Profile of Serdar Yegulalp
News & Commentary Posts: 760
Follow Serdar Yegulalp and BYTE on Twitter and Google+:
Articles by Serdar Yegulalp
posted in November 2007
After my last post about how "failed" open-source projects aren't really failures at all, a colleague of mine provided me with more perspectives on that situation. The very way open source works, he claimed, is like an amortization of risk against failure in software development.
People in South Korea speak of folks in North Korea more as lost brothers than bitter enemies. Over the years the two have made various rapprochements, but now it looks like North and South are teaming up on a whole new kind of joint project: a Korean-language Linux distribution.
The other day I posted about how Asus had apparently not released all of the source code for its Linux-based Eee PC, and I branded it a goof that would be rectified soon. Looks like that was indeed the case: Asus has fixed its mistake.
Sourceforge.net, the premier repository for open-source software, has more than 160,000 projects registered. Many of them will never reach the 1.0 revision marker. But is that really a bad thing?
With all the buzz about Verizon promising to open its wireless network to third-party devices in 2008, I find myself being strongly skeptical. This could turn out to be an open network in nothing but name.
The recent interview with Linus Torvalds cemented a number of things I've believed about Linux for a while now. Linux isn't an OS, or even a kernel: it's an embodiment of a design philosophy. One aspect of that philosophy could be described as "ignore the competition."
One of the provisions of using open-source code is that you have to honor the license the code was provided under, which usually means supplying the source on demand. From what other people have observed, Asus may not have properly fulfilled its obligations under the GPL to release all the source code used to build the Eee PC's proprietary hardware drivers. Or maybe someone just goofed.
Yes, I know the headline sounds like the fodder for a joke: "Run IE on Linux? Why would you want to?" But there are circumstances where it's unavoidable -- compatibility testing, or accessing IE-only sites without dual-booting -- and in the last few weeks I've come across a couple of interesting approaches to this issue.
The more I read about Amazon's Kindle device, the more I realize Amazon's managed to sell one thing and call it another. It's not an "electronic book" -- it's a portable vending machine for syndicated content and EVDO access. And if it works, it might hint at a new way to sell high-speed wireless access to the Internet as a whole, albeit in a heavily closed-ended way.
After my first post about creating my own Linux distribution as a learning project, I received a lot of extremely positive letters from readers, many of whom had suggestions about particular distributions to use as the core for the project. Here's some of what they had to say.
After reading about Microsoft cutting a deal with Kyocera to cross-license some of its patents in certain embedded Linux devices, I wondered if this really had anything to do with Linux at all. Many of the posts I've read on the subject have taken that to be the case, but is that true?
"Microsoft" and "open source" have, for a long time, not been two words you would typically breathe in the same sentence. And now I find myself reading an IWeek piece in which one of Microsoft's open-source point men, Bill Hilf, speaks up on both subjects.
The source code for the Linux-based Splashtop system environment, a way to run applications on a PC without ever formally booting it (among many other things), has just been released to the public.
Many in the open-source community applauded when Dell, arguably the single most influential PC maker right now, began -- however tentatively -- to provide Ubuntu Linux as one of its preloaded desktop system offerings. Now it's going a few steps further to offer both Ubuntu Server and OpenSolaris as standard server items along with the other Linux server OSes it has traditionally offered.
In my earlier blog post about Google's Android, I wondered if one of the fruits of that labor would be a phone user interface that didn't leave those of us not buying a phone that starts with the lower-case letter "i" out in the cold. Then I saw the videos on the Android Developer Channel and had a hard time not
Open-source video application Miro released its 1.0 version yesterday for Windows, Mac and Linux, but its creators don't think of it as just another me-too media player. They want it to be something a little more ... well, revolutionary.
Here's a project I've been thinking about for a good long time, and which I've finally decided to get under way in public: I'd like to try and build my own custom Linux distribution.
Back when Everex's Linux-based "Green PC" hit stores courtesy of Wal-Mart, I wasn't all that excited about it -- I saw it as being an also-ran to a much more exciting product, the Asus Eee subnotebook (also Linux-based). That said, the gPC is apparently selling like mad -- and now I think I see why: it's the Linux version of the Mac Mini, sort of.
If Linux and open-source developers in general want a good idea of a project to take cues from, there's one from Microsoft that is worth a long, hard look. No, not Vista -- in fact, it's not a desktop product at all, strictly speaking. It's Windows Home Server.
It didn't take very long for the Apple hacking community to make short work of the iPod Touch and hack into it, mere hours after a new "locked-down" firmware was released for it. It makes you wonder why they bother -- but then again, that goes for most everything kept under a digital lock and key, doesn't it?
I'd been curious about the Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud or "EC2" before, but I'm twice as curious now: Red Hat and Amazon have knocked heads to provide Red Hat Enterprise Linux as one of the standard offerings for EC2.
Not long after I covered Splashtop, the instant-on Linux-based boot environment that runs from flash memory, it looks like other hardware makers are getting into the same game. Meet Phoenix's Linux-based HyperSpace.
Google's "vapor-phone" announcement (as some people have branded it) has me hoping they can do something about the mobile phone market that so far only Apple, of all people, has done anything about: Make the phones less of a clumsy eyesore.
Sun Microsystems has turned its Solaris operating system, which uses the next-generation ZFS file system, into an open-source project; free downloads are now available.
And so now two new PCs running Linux out of the box have hit the shelves this week: Asus's $399 Eee Flash-storage mini-notebook and Everex's $198 TC2502 gPC, courtesy of Wal-Mart. Yes, they both run Linux, but the similarities end there -- and my money's on the Eee being the real success story of the t
With all of the hollering about Linux, Ubuntu or otherwise, there's another open-source operating system that just celebrated getting a new 4.2 release out the door. It's one that hasn't been quite as widely-celebrated as Linux but is still deeply important in its own way: OpenBSD.
In the first post in this series, I talked about how open-source operating systems were one of a galaxy of three major and complementary forces. The second, and in some ways more important force, is open-source applications.