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04.03.08

Another Hopeful ‘Prophecy’ From the Gartner Group(‘s Paying Clients)

Posted in Database, Deception, FUD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Oracle, SUN at 11:35 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“…analysts sell out. It’s their business model…”

Microsoft, internal document [PDF]

Gartner was accused yesterday of setting the market’s prices and rules, using disinformation. The streams of deception, or perception-shaping lies, just keep on coming. This time around, the Gartner Group gets echoed by InfoWorld, which had this to share.

“We advise clients that unless they have very strong IT resources, they should wait at least two years to think about deploying an open source database for mission-critical applications,” says Colleen Graham, Gartner’s longtime database market analyst.

As we noted right here, Oracle happens to be among the biggest subsidiaries of Gartner, so an open source database smear is only to be expected. That’s just how this business works. We also saw it recently in the Financial Express where Frost & Sullivan, along with the Gartner Group, were responsible for some abominable FUD, with MySQL’s market share claimed to be less than 1% (of course they selectively look at sales).

Gartner’s figures for annual sales of database software suggest that in 2005 and 2006, open source databases like MySQL and PostgreSQL had a Marketshare of less than 1%. Out of $105-million business estimated in India during 2006, according to Gartner, the open source vendors had a 0.2% Marketshare against Microsoft SQL’s share of 41.5%, Oracle’s 28.4% and IBM DB2’s of 17.6%. Gartner says it has not yet finalised data for 2007.

Another study, by Frost & Sullivan, based on an analysis of 300 enterprises across India, indicates that the Indian database market in 2006 was $148.6million (which is higher than the Gartner figure) and is expected to reach $424 million by 2010. Whatever be the numbers in terms of size, Sun…

We wrote about Frost & Sullivan in [1, 2]. Both firms (Gartner and Frost & Sullivan) are paid by Microsoft and at least one is well paid by Oracle as well. It is rather absurd that they claim to be able to gauge Free software usage. See this post about the market share lie.

“Perceptions get propagated, yet they are seeded in newspapers which parrot so-called analysts on contract.”MySQL has been downloaded over 100,000,000 times. Downloaded, not sold. Additionally, it comes preinstalled with some free software distributions, including GNU/Linux. Adding to one’s attention, how many blogs out there in India run MySQL? One should actually ponder how many blogs are not yet driven with Free software somewhere in the stack and also powered by MySQL.

The examples above are in full alignment with arguments you find elsewhere. FUD spreads. Perceptions get propagated, yet they are seeded in newspapers which parrot so-called analysts on contract. The same arguments are often getting used to downplay the role of GNU/Linux.

Database FUD is one thing, but in this particular case it comes from the very same firm that used to slam GNU/Linux and now come figures that contradict its own FUD. From the new article cited at the top:

But you can’t blame any cooling of the open source phenomenon for the weak traction of open source databases. Open source on the operating system, for example, sees continued gains: Linux was the No. 3 relational database OS with 15.5 percent market share in 2006, when it grew by 67 percent over the previous year, Gartner found. (Stats for 2007 won’t be ready for another few months.)

The following new comment speaks about how Gartner used to slam many things before they become too popular and widespread for their importance to be denied. That’s when commoditisation threatened their clients. It puts it
in good perspective the article above, to which it’s referring.

Seriously, I don’t trust anything coming out of ZDNet, Gartner, and a whole host of others. They’ve been dead wrong on a vast number of important things for YEARS now- at least a decade or more of it. Want junk advice- go looking to them for it.

Gartner’s word should remain as credible as the hand that feeds it. Watch again the quote at the top of this post. The press should really become more cautious when quoting people in reference to matters where wealthy clients are secretly involved. Financially even.

Despite Rigging, The World’s Population Said “No” to OOXML

Posted in America, Asia, ISO, Microsoft, Open XML, Red Hat at 11:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft is being very coy and dishonest this week. Having ensured that Microsoft itself is 'representing' entire countries and stealing the election in the majority of them, Microsoft wants the world to believe that over three quarters of ‘the world’ supports OOXML. Of course, it’s a foolish thing to believe and a lie of very great proportions.

Remind yourself of the truly appalling behaviour of Microsoft in India, including possible bribery and the well-documented ballot stuffing. Then consider China and recall the eye-opening story from a Brazilian delegate. In spite of these abuses, all three countries, the world’s largest populations in fact, ultimately voted “No” to OOXML. And here is an interesting fact:

Brazil, India, and China, which together count for more than a third of the world’s population, all voted against Office Open XML last week.

GNOME RPMJoining the protest against OOXML and the abuses of ISO we now see Red Hat.

Red Hat’s legal team published a statement criticizing the ISO fast track process and expressing disappointment with the outcome. “Will the real interoperability standard please stand up?” Red Hat’s legal team wrote. “Red Hat thinks governments and enterprises are not so easily confused. The Open Document Format, which has long been a multiparty-supported ISO standard, will continue to be a force in procurement decisions to be reckoned with. Government and Enterprises are tired of the lack of choice, lack of innovation, and premium rents from vendor lock-in.”

Statements from other key voices and vendors you can find here.

New Meme: “Open-Source Compatible”

Posted in Deception, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 10:41 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“We’re open source… open source… compatible.”

Convictions such as this one have become more common because the “open source” definition is being hijacked, deformed, diluted, bobbed of its spirit. Here we present yet another new example.

Microsoft/XAML

This example is a case of hijacking open source, as was mentioned earlier. Watch this headline:

Microsoft is to Release Open-Source Compatible XAML/WPF Specs

Microsoft has released an early draft of the specifications for XAML and WPF under the Microsoft Open Specification Promise. This offers patent protection for implementers against claims by Microsoft, allowing open source projects to use the specifications.

A few points ought to be made:

  1. XAML is the 'poison' that strives to close the Web, making it proprietary
  2. Antitrust investigators and the States (two continents) study this as a possible abuse
  3. Here you have “Open-Source” (open minus source). It’s not the same thing as Free software.
  4. The OSP, as we have seen before, is a case against the GPL [1, 2, 3]
  5. Even Miguel's recent comments on XAML/Silverlight revealed unsuppressed disappointment
  6. Microsoft has no plans of delivering Silverlight for GNU/Linux

Adobe/Flash

Another bothersome press release mixes the proprietary Flash framework with “open source code”. Even with Adobe aboard the Linux Foundation as a sponsor it remains unclear how ‘open’ Flash will ever be.

The founders of Influxis and Red5Server announced today the PaperWorld3D source code is now open to the public. PaperWorld, which leverages open source projects PaperVision3D and Red5, allows for rapid creation of MMOG 3D environments deployable over the Adobe Flash Player 9.

There is some more encouraging news however. As the following short article reminds us, open source needs truly open standards.

“It clear that the open source movement has gone far beyond the web page development stage, which is set to revolutionise communication,” he said.

De Wet also said that open protocols were needed for the industry to fully exploit open source software as a service.

Have a look again at this recent article which talks about the relationship between open standards and open source software. Adobe and Microsoft continue their pursuit trying to control the Web with proprietary technologies. The “open source” fluff they throw at the top is nothing but a decoy, an illusion.

Silverlight toilet

Final Decision on OOXML (at ISO Level) Still Two Months Away

Posted in Deception, ECMA, Formats, IBM, ISO, Microsoft, Open XML, Standard at 10:18 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Hey, put that champagne back in the ice bucket!”

We warned about this just a couple of days ago. Despite the fact that there are antitrust investigations [1, 2, 3] and loads of scrutiny at the highest of levels, Microsoft and ECMA bombarded the press with premature celebrations, leading to the false conclusion that all is said and done. Not so fast though!

We saw such massive journalistic fiasco back in September last year when Microsoft declared a win despite its definite loss. Many journalists bought this and therefore poisoned other people’s minds with disinformation (the ‘broken telephone’ effect). Let us calm down, look beyond the hype, and consider again some facts.

As the following article clearly states, two months remain for an appeal. That’s plenty of time for investigation.

Any of the ISO and IEC national bodies can lodge a formal appeal over the next two months, before the Office Open XML standard is published.

[...]

Bob Sutor, vice president of open source and standards for IBM and one of the harshest critics of the Open XML format, conceded that enough countries had changed their votes from the September ballot to allow the specification to move forward into the publication preparation phase.

“So is that it? Of course not. The process of international standards-making has been laid bare for all to examine. People now have some sense that not all standards are created by a community of independent stakeholders, as some people may have previously assumed,” Sutor said in a blog post.

Furthermore, “The lack of transparency, the ability to see who voted and why, leads to less understanding and accountability,” Sutor wrote.

Publication of the standard is still two months away, and any of the ISO/IEC national bodies can lodge a formal appeal during this time.

The bits about transparency are extremely important. In case you needed to know why ECMA and Microsoft kept everything (including that horrid BRM [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]) in the dark, this is why. It hinders the investigation into abuse of the process, reducing scrutiny through obfuscation. Remember how Microsoft lied to everyone about the BRM? Remember how many Microsoft employees kind of secretly intruded the BRM?

It’s important that people come forward and make public everything they know before it escapes one’s memory scope. As the following InternetNews article stresses again (further validating the above), up to 2 months remain for complaints to be filed with the European Commission.

Meanwhile, the normal ISO process means that OOXML will not become an official standard until at least the two-month waiting period runs out.

The standards process, so far, has been a hard fight for Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) and its supporters — primarily European standards body Ecma International, which sponsored OOXML’s submission to the ISO last year.

That latter sentence is quoted for it is quite funny. If ECMA is a primary supporter of Microsoft/OOXML, then one should take another hard look at van den Beld [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]. Many OOXML ‘supporters’, all just jumping for dollars.

“Get me into that and goddam, we’ll make so much money!”

Bill Gates, Microsoft (source)

Novell’s Ron Hovsepian Slammed by Sun Employee

Posted in FUD, GNU/Linux, Interview, Microsoft, Novell, OIN, OpenOffice, Oracle, Red Hat, Ron Hovsepian, SUN, Ubuntu, UNIX at 9:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

With tactless CEOs like these, who needs enemies?

Ron Hovsepian confused

Yesterday we wrote about the poor recent interview with Ron Hovsepian, CEO of Novell. The interview was poor for a variety of reasons, some of which were already mentioned in previous posts, but one largely overlooked issue was the attack on Sun.

“Hovsepian, hypocritically enough, called the kettle black.”Why would Novell want to attack Sun? For that matter, why would Amanda McPherson of the Linux Foundation pick these fights, which totally escape and ignore the real dangers? Just because Oracle is in OIN, for example, does not make it ‘safe’ and benign to Linux, but at the same time, there is no justifiable reason to sort of ignite any of these ‘civil wars’ [1, 2], unless a company that uses GNU/Linux aligns with one which calls it a “cancer” and then uses FUD to market itself.

Ron Hovsepian’s ridicule of Sun (which needn’t be parroted here) was ironically enough about its open source strategy. Hovsepian, hypocritically enough, called the kettle black.

Here is one response to Hovsepian’s cheat shots or accusations. [via Simon Phipps]

Novell CEO Ron Hovsepian, (“ill considered” – Redmonk), not content with the murkiness of his own company’s patent arrangements with Microsoft (the two companies laughably “agreed to disagree” on whether or not their November 2006 agreement was an ackowledgement that Novell was infringing Microsoft patents), has decided to throw some mud in the general direction of OpenSolaris.

[...]

Now this isn’t Mr Hovsepian’s first ill-informed and misleading attack on OpenSolaris, but I don’t think that’s it’s really our fault. Simply put, he has a shortage of targets. I mean, who else is he going to attack? Given his position, he can’t very well attack another Linux distro, and he’s hardly going to attack Microsoft. Apple? For successfully porting of OpenSolaris technology into their operating system (without licensing any patents, we might point out)? Doesn’t really work, does it?

Open source needs better leadership that this.

Well done and congratulations, Ron Hovsepian and Novell. You’ve just made yourselves more enemies at Sun. Novell’s OpenOffice.org ‘fork’ [1, 2], which has some issues arising with the introduction of LGPLv3, didn’t do much good, either.

Just glancing over at Erwin’s blog you’ll come to discover another case study or reciprocity. It’s a case where OpenOffice.org assists GNU/Linux adoption and vice versa. 9,000 schools PCs were converted to GNU/Linux. So why fight?

How impolite of Novell not to acknowledge this and also forget where its code came from (Novell is a latecomer). It previously tried to throw mud also in the face of Red Hat, whose hard labour Novell enjoys yet discredits.

Realising that Red Hat FUD comes back to bite Novell in the rear, the company is looking for new targets. Novell will never criticise its new partner, Microsoft. So, who else? Should Novell be surprised that Sun is now doing business with Canonical (Ubuntu), as reported yesterday by Reuters? Novell painted itself into a corner, surely.

Links 03/04/2008: 42,000 Russian Post Offices Move to Red Hat GNU/Linux and ODF?

Posted in News Roundup at 9:56 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

When You Know That Microsoft Has Formally Hijacked Open Source

Posted in Asia, Deception, Free/Libre Software, ISO, Microsoft, Open XML at 7:59 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Holy Macaroni! At first, when viewed in the feeds reader, the following article seemed like humour, but it’s not (it’s from April 3rd, not April 1st). The Times of India, a respectable publication, has just published an article with the headline: “MS says it won open source war.” This refers only to the OOXML fiasco. So, what on earth is “open source” here (mind another hijack of this term) and what makes this a win, let alone a “war”? It’s only an isolated step, which was taken using sheer corruption that remains under investigation with an appeal. OOXML won't ever be implemented and whatever strives to implement something close to it is not open source, it’s proprietary. OOXML itself is proprietary.

Can you see how Microsoft hijacks the team “open source” and puts it up for display in mainstream papers, claiming that it “won the open source war”? As in defeated others at an open source game, using proprietary formats? What would an innocent non-techie reader think? The term “open source” is being artificially diluted here and this dilution serves no-one but Microsoft. Remember Aras?

On a brighter note, if you want some OOXML humour, Groklaw has some.

Gartner et al Fixing the Price for the Entire Industry?

Posted in Deception, Finance, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, GPL, Microsoft at 4:25 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Microsoft did sponsor the benchmark testing and the NT server was better tuned than the Linux one. Having said that, I must say that I still trust the Windows NT server would have outperformed the Linux one.”

Windows platform manager, Microsoft South-Africa
Reference: Outrage at Microsoft’s independent, yet sponsored NT 4.0/Linux research

Earlier today we mentioned some of the latest FUD from Gartner, which was directed at the GNU/Linux server/desktop in particular. Always remember the Gartner-Microsoft connection and also remember how Microsoft views analysts.

A couple of hours ago we cited this item, which contains a lot of information about Gartner, with which you are probably familiar if you have read this site for a while. One of our readers wrote in to request “a knock against Gartner Group for “unintentionally” setting desktop infrastructure pricing.” Watch the supporting statement from the article.

Suffolk told Gartner, “I think we have fundamentally failed on a worldwide basis as an IT industry to understand the cost of what we do. And I roundly blame Gartner for this, because you guys are the ones who come up with TCO [total cost of ownership] benchmarking. It has become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

“So, I go out and I pick boring desktop infrastructure. What price do you think the suppliers broadly pitch? You will not be shocked to know that it is somewhere around the Gartner TCO benchmark.”

“Give ‘em a 1,” he said, referring to this index. It is now done (down from the rather arbitrary level of 2).

As we said before, Microsoft hopes to ‘reform’ open source, so it is more afraid of Linux and the GPL, which bear all the roots of the Free software movement, spirit and… well, licence of course. It all boils down to the licences, no matter how much we might hate lawyers or misunderstand law. IANAL.

Always remember that Microsoft’s #1 priority is money. Money, money, money. It’s a mindset. It’s hard to cure, if not altogether impossible. In his recent CNET interview, Steve Ballmer called Linux his number 1 competitor. Also see Microsoft’s latest SEC filing about Linux. Mind the part about IPR ‘education’ as a ‘battle plan’.

Remember that a lot is at stake and it boils down to one thing: perception.

This weekend we shall briefly mention an articles about a CIO from Australia, who had to face a little conflict with Novell over misconceptions. Jeff Waugh gave him a hard time as well, but he slammed vocal critics.

Gartner is among those used to deceive a lot on TCO, so we must remember it and keep track of the FUD. It’s just what these folks are paid to do and IDC is even worse than Gartner. Remind yourself again of how Microsoft views analysts, based on its own written words. Never forget this.

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