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Interview: Joe Brockmeier, openSUSE Community Manager

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Despite some downsizing in response to the fragile economic climate Novell have managed to keep up the pace of new development. The H Open spoke to openSUSE's Community Manager Joe Brockmeier for his views on the recent changes at Novell and his take on the future of openSUSE.

It’s always a shame when a vibrant open source-focused company is working hard to reinvent itself during an economic downturn and news of a few job cuts overshadows some of the better work being carried out beneath the corporate underbelly.

Although the company has admittedly shed a few pounds of employee flesh over the last year, Novell has come to the fore with its support for Moblin 2.1, its enterprise collaboration platform known as Pulse and its new Mono Tools add-in module for Microsoft Visual Studio.

At a time when enterprise open source implementations are blossoming and talk of Windows to Linux interoperability is fervent, Novell is hedging its bets on commercial implementations of OpenSUSE 11.2 and hoping that desktop/client Linux is about to witness a renaissance the likes of which have never been seen.

But has OpenSUSE developed into the fully blown distro that it needs to be to sit well in the enterprise space with the required level of interoperability? What makes it different from the next distro and why should we care? The H spoke to Joe Brockmeier (known to his friends as Zonker) , who is OpenSUSE's Community Manager for the inside track on the newest iteration of the Novell enterprise Linux stack.

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