Profile of Serdar Yegulalp
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Articles by Serdar Yegulalp
posted in July 2009
A rift has opened within the ranks of the CentOS project -- a schism between the project's team and its leader that, to me, points up the differences between a "hobby" and a "professional" open source project.
I didn't make it to OSCON this year, so I missed out on more than a few nifty events. One was a panel chaired by Matt Asay of Alfresco, where he cited research to show that companies do switch to open source as a way to save money, but that there are other, much larger goals beyond that.
After my talk earlier in the week about open source in health care, I turned to a parallel discussion -- using open source in a federal agency that's long been hidebound by closed-ended legacy systems. Namely, the FAA.
The other day I spoke with Rick Jung, COO of Medsphere, of the commercial open source health care software package OpenVista. Their mission: to get health care providers of all strata to use open source, save a bunch of money, and change the way we do this stuff for keeps.
We look at Adobe Premiere Elements, DeskShare Auto Movie Creator, Cyberlink PowerDirector, Corel VideoStudio, and other video editing software for vloggers.
Any discussion about open source that doesn't bristle at least some hairs isn't worth having. That doesn't make the other guy right -- but it does mean nobody's going to learn anything as long as we just pat each other on the shoulder. Some conflict is vital.
The saga of Microsoft's contributions to the kernel just took another curious step. A key engineer with open source network-infrastructure company Vyatta indicated that Microsoft had no choice but to post the drivers as GPL. The implication is that they wouldn't have if no one had pointed it out to them.
I've already commented on the meaning of Microsoft's contributions to the Linux kernel and releasing extensions for Moodle, but after going over what I wrote I thought some more analysis of the present and future of Microsoft's open source strategies are worth talking about. And no, pigs are still not flying, although they're getting mighty light-footed.
The group's name: Open Source for America. The group's mission: revolutionize the way we govern ourselves, from IT departments on outwards. Or at least just the IT departments.
Two announcements, both things offered as open source, have come from entirely different corners of the industry. In one corner is Canonical -- the Ubuntu folks. In the other is Adobe, a name not normally associated with open source, but there are signs they're working to change that.
"That'll never happen." I'm learning not to say those words, because never is a long, long time. How about, for instance, Microsoft contributing GPLed code to the Linux kernel? Well, guess what.
If you've been curious about Google Android but aren't up for a) dropping the cash to buy an actual mobile device to run it on or b) hacking the existing codebase to make it run on your notebook, someone's just saved you a lot of trouble. Welcome to the first Android live CD.
An in-place operating system upgrade to Microsoft Windows 7 on a Windows XP system is impossible. Here's how to migrate your data and apps with the fewest hassles.
Funny how things feed back into each other. Just the other day, a book recommendation from a friend that was not at all related to computers made for an interesting parallel with a discussion elsewhere about open source vs. closed minds -- the closed minds being those of some open source advocates.
Analysis of open source from a legal perspective has typically been the domain of websites like Groklaw, or the occasional column in a law journal. Now there's a whole journal focusing exclusively on the legal issues that arise from open source: the International Free and Open Source Software Law Review, or IFOSS L. Rev., for short.
Sun's got a long, hard road ahead of it as a new sibling in the Oracle family, but I'm not inclined to believe the recent doomsaying that Solaris, or OpenSolaris, is about to be kicked out of the house. If that happens, it won't be for years yet, if at all.
There are a few ways to see Microsoft's plans for a free web-based version of Office. One, it's self-competition; two, it's competition with open source software; three, it's competition with other web services. Which one matters most?
It's remarkable how the same article can contain both prescient insight and things that make me slap my head in dismay. In this case, it's a piece about the way open source software has eaten into commercial offerings, but it draws a distinction between proprietary and open source that might well not exist.
Earlier in the week before everyone went all Google-eyed, I did a quick back-and-forth interview with Miguel de Icaza -- lead programmer for the free .NET implementation, Mono, and leader of the GNOME desktop project --about Microsoft and their Community Promise for C# and the CLI.
It's finally happened. Google's dived headfirst into the desktop operating system game, just like people speculated they would. And from the sound of it, it's an OS where the main user-interface metaphor is the web. Pass the aspirin.
We look beyond the traditional open source OS of choice to other free options such BSD, OpenSolaris, HaikuOS, ReactOS, and PureDarwin.
Seems like just the other week there was the strong possibility of vendor-neutral support for video as a standard element in HTML 5. Now it's all up in smoke no thanks to disagreement on what codec to implement as the base standard, and disagreement over a free-and-open spec vs. a for-pay spec.
Mark Cuban has a way of making people listen even if what he says turns them off. This definitely applies to a blog post he made over the weekend: people who live by free are gonna die that way, too.
After installing 64-bit Windows on one of my test machines, I scurried around to see what 64-bit desktop applications are available in the open source world. Firefox is one of them, but not officially -- at least, not yet. The reasons for this are not what you might think.
At the New Yorker, there's a review of Chris Anderson's new book Free: The Future of a Radical Price by Tipping Point author Malcolm Gladwell. The points made in the article, while not aimed directly at die-hard open source advocates, might well have been. Free, as Gladwell puts it, is just another price.