Profile of Serdar Yegulalp
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Articles by Serdar Yegulalp
posted in January 2008
This may not be "the year of Linux on the desktop" -- and who knows, maybe it is -- but there's little to no question that this is a pivotal year for open source as a mainstream economic phenomenon in the tech world, as my colleague Charles Babcock has indicated. My big question is: what next?
Something I've noted in passing about the recent spate of open-source acquisitions -- Nokia and Trolltech, Sun and MySQL AB -- deserves to be expounded on at length. What's being bought here is not the software, but the talent behind it. The software is free, or as free as this sort of thing gets. Talent is priceless. That's what's being bought and sold here.
What with Six Apart's blogging/CMS software Movable Type now released in an open source edition, I decided to go directly to someone at the company -- namely, VP Anil Dash -- and talk to him about where his company's headed. Movable Type's become one of my personal open source case studies, partly because I use the program myself (as does InformationWeek) and because I'v
The latest open source acquisition just came down the pike, and from the outside it's one of the unlikelier pairings imaginable: Mobile handset vendor Nokia just made a $150+ million offer for open source software makers Trolltech.
Yesterday my colleague Charles Babcock brought us the news about HP's release of the FOSSology tool, a license-auditing application that promises to help organizations cut through the thickets of software licenses that can come with open source programs. When you get down to it, though, it's just a tool: the real decisions about software licensing have to and always
Most of my nightmares tend to be mundane nonsense about being late for school. Folks in the open source community have nightmares about open source products becoming closed source properties. That's nightmarish, to be sure, but I have to ask how much of the nightmare is not wholly real.
Here's how to get ready for Windows Vista Service Pack 1, due from Microsoft in March, with its much needed performance enhancements, security upgrades, and compatibility revisions.
An article ran a couple of days ago in the New York Times (whose coverage of technology can be spotty), entitled "The Risk of Innovation: Will Anyone Embrace It?" by G. Pascal Zachary, a Stanford journalism professor. The thesis was pretty straightforward: "Great innovations have foundered over human stubbornness." Just because you build it, that doesn't mean they will come. (And sho
Whether you want to customize Knoppix, respin an existing distribution of the open-source operating system, like Puppy Linux, or are intent on creating your own package from scratch, we'll walk you through the process.
Well, you can't say they didn't try. After one of the more prominent online OS/2 communities (OS2 World) delivered a politely worded petition with 11,000 signatures to IBM to make OS/2 into an open source product, the word has come back from IBM: Sorry, but no. Not happening.
The other day, when talking about Microsoft's adventures with the OOXML standard it drafted, I said something to the effect that someone could easily write a book about that escapade. As it turns out, someone is.
If there's one document format out there that's been a de facto standard that defines de facto standards, it's the Microsoft Office .DOC format (vintage 1997-2003), which has the double whammy of being binary and proprietary, despite also being heavily reverse-engineered. Now Microsoft has decided to kick off an open source
After the filing of the Verizon / BusyBox suit, and after reading about any number of other, similar incidents where a company showed what could only be seen as flagrant disregard for the GPL, I had to ask myself: Why do people do this? Are companies really that naive about the GPL, or do they just think they can get away with anything?
Sun's open source strategy has just ratcheted up a notch: they've purchased MySQL AB, the makers of one of the most widely-used open source database solutions. So, is this a good thing or a bad thing? My take: It ought to be a good thing.
Not all open source software is Serious Business. A project that caught my attention in the last couple of days is a port of the classic Infogrames / EA title SimCity -- released for just about every platform known to man -- into an open source implementation named Micropolis.
When IBM sold its personal computer division to Chinese PC maker Lenovo, one of the flagship products that went along on that sale was its invaluable ThinkPad notebook line, home of some of the best engineering I've seen in notebook PCs in the entire time they've been on the market. Now Lenovo is preparing to take the ThinkPad a step ahead and ship them with SUSE Linux preinstalled.
Wow, that didn't take long. Barely days after Sony's announcement about its peculiar plan to sell unprotected MP3s through a brick-and-mortar-store gift card system, it's relented and announced that it will begin selling portions of its music catalog as unprotected MP3s through -- who else? -- Amazon.com.
After Jimmy Wales took the wrapping off the first version of his Wikia Search system, many people agreed with his warning: yes, it does indeed suck. The search results are spotty, not always properly relevant, and sometimes just inexplicable. But really, is there any way for someone to make something new in as wel
Leave it to Sony to come up with a way to screw something up in a way that almost no one else has before. Amidst the rush of news flooding out from CES, they announced their plan to sell music from their catalog without DRM -- and it sounds almost as dumb as DRM itself.
There was a lot of intriguing feedback from my last post, about the MakeTheMove.Net campaign to get people to switch to Linux. Most of it revolved around the issue I'd touched on with my own discussion: Amongst nontechnical users, Linux (and probably open source in general) has a bit of a PR problem, and the people doing the adv
Never underestimate the power of a clever ad campaign. Love them or hate them, the white-studio Apple ads have made the Mac that much more visible and enticing an option to PC users. Now a cadre of Canberra Linux Users group folks have crafted a simple Web site to compel Windows and closed-source software uses to switch to Linux/FOSS: Make The Move. It's a great idea, but as much as I hate to admit it, I think the delivery
After posting my article about five things that open source needs in 2008, I braced for a storm of feedback, as would be generated by most any discussion of the subject. To my surprise, I got more than a few things worth chewing over and sharing.
Who remembers BeOS? The "media OS", produced by a company with former Apple alum Jean-Louis Gassée at the helm, and which was briefly considered as a possible replacement for the Mac OS? Well, after an all-too-brief moment of possibility, it died. Ended up in the hands of Palm, and a few people (me included) shook their heads at what could have been. And now, after a fashion, it's been reborn. Me