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Open source guru advocates ideological shift

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Eric Raymond, one of the high priests of open source, has told the community that painful compromises are needed to the way it deals with closed source platforms and formats to avoid losing ground on desktops and new media players.

Raymond said the community is not moving fast enough to engage with non-technical users whose first-choice platform is either an iPod, MP3 player or Microsoft desktop running Windows Media Player.

With iPod holding a massive market share and Windows Vista coming down the pipe, Raymond warned that Linux risks getting locked out of new hardware platforms for the next 30 years unless it proves it can work with iPods, MP3s and WMP.

It was an unexpected reality check from the unorthodox Raymond, author of the famed Cathedral and the Bazaar, participating in a spirited panel at LinuxWorld in San Francisco, California.

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