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Open source doesn't make Gartner's "top-ten" list

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Perhaps the biggest news in Gartner's latest "Top 10 Technologies" report is the absence of open source. Or perhaps its omnipresence. The report offers essentially the same technologies as last year's list, with some curious additions:

  1. Multicore and hybrid processors

  2. Virtualization and fabric computing
  3. Social networks and social software
  4. Cloud computing and cloud/Web platforms
  5. Web mashups
  6. User Interface
  7. Ubiquitous computing
  8. Contextual computing
  9. Augmented reality
  10. Semantics

More Here

No surprise here. Partner Group = Microsoft

See the following resources for info:

“Analysts sell out - that’s their business model… But they are very concerned
that they never look like they are selling out, so that makes them very
prickly to work with.”

–Microsoft, internal document


Reality Check: What does Gartner really DO?

,----[ Quote ]
| I have this notion to write a series of columns from time to time under the
| title "Reality Check" -- columns intended to explain how the world of
| Information Technology actually functions. Because like any other entrenched,
| complex, and often closeted industry, things in IT don't really work the way
| many people think they do. I'm guessing the Vatican is a bit like that, too.
| So I'll be looking at various IT players and their roles and trying to put
| them into perspective, much as I did recently with a column or two about the
| role of computer consultants. This week the topic is Gartner Inc., or rather
| all the Gartner-like operations that give advice about technology to
| America's largest businesses: what do these guys actually DO?
| Not much of real value I'm afraid -- at least of value in my view.
| [...]
| Into this knowledge vacuum come the vendors, who want to sell stuff, and the
| consultants like Gartner, Forrester, IDC, and the Yankee Group, who need IT
| managers to feel uncertain about every decision except the decision to buy
| something, anything. Then look at the number of "research reports" that are
| commissioned by vendors. Uh-oh.
| The five P's of IT are Pride, Prejudice, Politics, Price, and Performance,
| with the last two being by far the least important. Consultants like Gartner
| are very useful for minding the pride and politics, their real function being
| to provide $2 billion worth of IT management CYA per year.

PC deal could save public sector billions

,----[ Quote ]
| Suffolk told Gartner, “I think we have fundamentally failed on a worldwide
| basis as an IT industry to understand the cost of what we do. And I roundly
| blame Gartner for this, because you guys are the ones who come up with TCO
| [total cost of ownership] benchmarking. It has become a self-fulfilling
| prophecy.
| “So, I go out and I pick boring desktop infrastructure. What price do you
| think the suppliers broadly pitch? You will not be shocked to know that it is
| somewhere around the Gartner TCO benchmark.”

Need some data to support your cause? Hire an analyst

,----[ Quote
| raises an important issue about the integrity of research being done
| by industry analysts. Namely, if a sponsor pays for the research, do they get
| favorable treatment in that research?
| [...]
| I'm not suggesting that the research is corrupted. I'm just suggesting that
| it's hard to remove the taint of sponsored research. Just take a look at
| Gartner's "Hype Cycle" on open source, which is woefully inaccurate, probably
| in part because Gartner gets its information from the vendors who sponsor its
| research, not the customers who are buying into open source in droves.
| So, the next time you read a report, blog entry, or article, consider who
| pays the writer (including when reading this blog).

Gartner analyst: OOXML important domino

,----[ Quote ]
| Businessweek (Jennifer L Schenker) quoted Gartner analyst Michael Silver last
| week who puts OOXML in a wider commercial perspective...
| "appear more open". This is how Gartner views the credibility of the new
| [OOXML] openness....
| Look how optimistic Gartner's Silver is...

NY Times bans Microsoft analysts from Microsoft stories

,----[ Quote ]
| Just days after banning Enderle from discussing Microsoft because
| he has Microsoft as a client, the Times quoted Gartner analyst
| Michael Silver and AMR Research analyst Jim Murphy in a story
| about Microsoft's Windows and Office software.
| If the paper would prefer not to quote an analyst who has
| experience with a client, it did a poor job. Silver is Gartner's
| vice president in charge of client computing. Microsoft happens to
| do lots of business with Gartner and also happens to have a
| client-software monopoly. We're guessing that Silver knows
| Microsoft's products well and has direct involvement with the
| company.
| And, sure enough, he appears a number of times on Microsoft's
| own site and thousands of times in stories about Microsoft.
| Jim Murphy - wait for it - covers Microsoft too and is even more
| prolific than Silver.
| [...]
| Part of the problem stems from the reticence of companies such as
| IDC and Gartner to reveal their clients. That should make everyone
| nervous, but it doesn't. So called objective technology publications
| keep publishing material bought by vendors without telling you this.
| They're also too lazy or scared to ignore the likes of Gartner and
| IDC until the firms change their disclosure rules.

Buy Vista or die

,----[ Quote ]
| Gartner research vice president Michael Silver said that outfits have delayed
| their Vista migrations to the point of stupidity and now some are considering
| late 2008 or even 2009, while others mull skipping the OS completely.

Other Underreported Stories: Analyst Integrity?

,----[ Quote ]
| There was a pretty interesting discussion with views on both sides. Some felt
| that the rumors have been so persistent that, well, where there's smoke
| there's fire. Others saying they have heard from someone who heard from
| someone that once they started paying their exposure improved. Others saying
| it's just like the rumors that magazine advertisers get better reviews, an
| accusation that has been levied to Ziff-Davis publications, as well as
| photography and stereo equipment magazines for years.

Credibility Of Analysts

,----[ Quote
| Research firms make their living by offering expert advice to business and
| technology people about the best ways to invest their IT dollars. It can be
| invaluable insight, but only if that analysis comes with no strings attached.
| And on that, there's no guarantee.
| Forrester, Gartner, IDC, and others insist their output is squeaky clean, yet
| they also rake in millions providing services to the very same companies they
| monitor, heavyweights like Cisco, IBM, Microsoft, and Oracle. Which leads to
| a question that continues to dog the research firms: How much influence do
| technology vendors have over their work?

"Consultants: These guys are your best bets as moderators. Get a well-known
consultant on your side early, but don’t let him publish anything blatantly
pro-Microsoft. Then, get him to propose himself to the conference organizers
as a moderator, whenever a panel opportunity comes up. Since he’s well-known,
but apparently independent, he’ll be accepted - one less thing for the
constantly-overworked conference organizer to worry about, right?"

-- Microsoft

Chicken Little

Hopefully you're well paid to be "that freaky tinfoil hat Open Source guy" - otherwise your never ending "chicken little" act can't be a good career strategy (unless you live in the fantasy Open Source world - where food and transportation and health care and living expenses and housing and education and entertainment are all free -- I'd settle just for Open Source Gas!).

Without fail, for the last 10 years, every high-level tech project meeting (i.e. with "the suits") I've ever been in, that had even a smidge of Open Source tech in it, brings up the "freak discussion".

People like you and RSM and the numerous others who do nothing but "cry wolf" actually do more AGAINST the wide spread adoption of Open Source then Microsoft could ever do. The whole freak act does nothing but scare off business projects that could easily benefit from an Open Source solution, but decide NOT to, because of all the negative crap that even a Luddite Executive with his two finger hunt and peck typing style can find doing a simple google search.

Here's the simple explanation for all you "OS is a Religion" freaks. Businesses DOESN'T CARE - EVER! To a business, it's ALL ABOUT ROI AND THE BOTTOM LINE. If (or when for you optimistic types) OPEN SOURCE can increase either one (i.e. ROI or the BOTTOM LINE) businesses will be LINING UP with their buckets of money in hand to adopt OPEN SOURCE. Until that happens, stop spreading your own Religious-esque FUD. All you're doing is making the buy-in risk WAY TOO FREAKING HIGH for any sensible business manager to even consider.

So if you want Open Source to "win" (whatever that means in your pointy little heads) MAKE IT WORK BETTER then non-open source solutions. It's really just that simple.

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