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06.16.10

Forrester’s Marketers in Suits (Updated)

Posted in Deception, FUD, Marketing, Microsoft, Office Suites, OpenOffice at 7:59 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Microsoft sets off its $80,000,000 marketing campaign for Office 2010, spearheaded by analysts whom Microsoft is paying a lot of money through lucrative contracts

MICROSOFT’S latest version of its biggest (but ever-shrinking) cash cow is out, so Microsoft’s “perception management” [1, 2] kicks off, led by Microsoft marketers (masquerading as “analysts”) such as Forrester. This latest promotional fluff reminds us a great deal of the anti-Google Apps/Docs 'studies' from former Microsoft employees (also masquerading as independent “consultants”/”analysts”) because they deliver exactly the same talking points which are incorrect. As SJVN puts it:

Am I the only who finds Forrester analyst JP Gowdner’s blog proclamation that “Office 2010, Microsoft’s latest release, will continue to succeed with consumers” and “In terms of usage and penetration, Google Docs remains a failure” on the eve of Office 2010′s arrival to retails stores be a little … suspicious? Could it have anything to do with Microsoft having just launched n $80 million Office 2010 ad campaign?

Notice how they leave out OpenOffice.org. There are many examples just like this and it’s probably deliberate (distraction from the real competition). Neither Google nor Microsoft is the decent option here; both are proprietary. One ought to promote Abiword, KOffice, OpenOffice.org, and so forth. This omission of OpenOffice.org is a subject that has been brought up with examples in the IRC channel, especially in recent weeks. Microsoft knows that it would be promotional to mention its #1 competition, which it hires special staff to counter/suppress. It’s more convenient for Microsoft to pretend that it’s only competing against Google (one big brand against another).

Pogson explains “why schools should not use Microsoft Office” and Linux Pro Magazine drops some OpenOffice.org numbers:

Use GNU/Linux, a cooperative product of the world which works for you, not against you.

 

Popular open source productivity a154 million downloads since version 3.0

This number does not include tens of millions of GNU/Linux downloads that contain OpenOffice.org.

According to this new report from OSOR, a Danish ministry “leaves out open source savings in report on Police budget” (we alluded to this last week).

In a report requested by the parliament on the Police budget, the Danish ministry of Finance has left out recommendations by its consultants to switch to open source, which would result in savings of a 100 million kroner (about 13 million Euro), Danish newspapers report.

The omission was found by the Danish Association for Open Source Service suppliers (OSL), which compared the report sent to parliament with the original report by McKinsey, a consultancy. They recommend switching from the proprietary office system and relational database management system to open source alternatives OpenOffice and MySQL.

For an idea of what goes on in Denmark, see this post. Microsoft plays dirty.

Update: Microsoft is now using its partners from comScore [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11] to spread lies about the market share of Office for gullible journalists to repeat those lies in print.

Quote of the Day: “All Novell Are Offering Here is a Chance to be a Slave to a New Master”

Posted in Novell, Oracle, Quote, SUN at 7:21 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Novell cuffs

Summary: Microsoft-Novell slave trade in the words of Simon Phipps

TODAY’s words of wisdom come from Simon Phipps (formerly of Sun). Simon says:

While this is slick (if predictable) marketing there’s a smarter solution than switching away from the software in which you’ve already invested to something else from Novell (or anyone else) and becoming the slave of proprietary software.

Since most of the software Sun produced is open source, current users can just stick with it and buy the service they need from a new supplier, such as ForgeRock. That’s investment protection and technology continuity both provided by the liberties open source unlocks.

All Novell are offering here is a chance to be a slave to a new master, and they are offering it to customers who have already broken free – if they choose to be.

We don’t recommend the Sun/Oracle stack, but the point worth making is that Novell is not a Free software company. It’s a proprietary/Fog Computing company which maintains lock-in.

Did Microsoft Threaten to Retaliate Against Dell for Telling the Truth About GNU/Linux? (Updatedx2)

Posted in Dell, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Security, Windows at 6:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

[Update (17/Jun, 1:40 GMT): the page from Dell appears to have been reinstated.]

[Update #2 (18/Jun, 0:10 GMT): Dell has indeed changed this page (permanently), as the cached page clearly reveals. We have just grabbed screenshots to compare:]

Dell before and after

Dell monitor logo

Summary: After public embarrassment for Microsoft, Dell ‘censors’ its own Web pages that say GNU/Linux is more secure than Windows

SEVERAL years ago Microsoft threatened to "whack" Dell for supporting GNU/Linux. Microsoft may be doing something similar with Dell right about now.

We wish to begin by stating the fact that Microsoft produces fake security reports based on the hiding of known flaws that it silently patches. Microsoft has reluctantly admitted this last month. We believe this to be fraudulent although Microsoft’s definition of “fraudulent” is probably different from ours.

Anyway, Dell is being a coward because after publishing a “top 10″ list of reasons to buy a PC with Ubuntu GNU/Linux Dell is stepping back. A British news site says:

Dell appears to be back-tracking on a claim made on its website that Ubuntu is safer than Windows.

[...]

Dell’s proclamation was immediately picked up on by bloggers and news aggregators such as Digg.com, no doubt attracting the attention of Microsoft’s PR machine.

This morning, Dell appears to have taken down the Ubuntu page, although a copy of the original site (PDF) was saved by The VAR Guy website, in case Dell decided to pull it.

When PC Pro asked Dell what it’s official position on the relative merits of Ubuntu and Windows were, a company spokesperson replied: “With regards to the information cited on the Ubuntu page on Dell’s website, it is not Dell’s intention to recommend one OS over another, but instead to offer some educational facts that may be of interest to customers considering a system with Ubuntu pre-installed.”

Is Dell insecure about its own judgment? Is it afraid of Microsoft’s wrath? We may never find out until another lump of E-mail gets unsealed (like in Comes vs Microsoft).

For an idea of how much damage was caused to Microsoft’s reputation (maybe on par with Google’s abandonment of Windows), see some of the latest posts on the subject. There are many more and below we have just a new sample:

  1. Dell Says Ubuntu Is Safer Than Windows
  2. Dell Says: ‘Ubuntu is safer than Microsoft Windows’
  3. Ubuntu ‘more secure’ than Windows, says Dell
  4. Ubuntu is safer than Windows, it’s official
  5. Dell claims that Ubuntu is better than Windows
  6. Dell says Ubuntu is safer than Windows
  7. Dell Recommends Ubuntu

The page compares that other OS on a number of features and it looks pretty fair. I like that they actually tell people “Ubuntu is safer than Windows“.

That last one from Pogson is already being trolled by a known, longtime Microsoft booster (who has multiple identities), whose alleged friend once mailed me claiming that he knew him in person, as an AstroTurfer with pride. We already know that Microsoft employs AstroTurfers, but that’s a story for another type of discussion.

Pogson has another new post about Dell and about GNU/Linux malware — a subject which we wrote about earlier today and in previous posts with a lot of links in them.

In other news, according to IDG, “Hackers exploit Windows XP zero-day, Microsoft confirms”:

Hackers are now exploiting the zero-day Windows vulnerability that a Google engineer took public last week, Microsoft confirmed today.

Although Microsoft did not share details of the attack, other researchers filled in the blanks.

A compromised Web site is serving an exploit of the bug in Windows’ Help and Support Center to hijack PCs running Windows XP, said Graham Cluley, a senior technology consultant at antivirus vendor Sophos. Cluley declined to identify the site, saying only that it was dedicated to open-source software.

After almost 9 years of patches Windows XP remains insecure. Some known flaws will never be fixed, either. Vista 7 is not the solution.

IRC Proceedings: June 16th, 2010

Posted in IRC Logs at 6:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME Gedit

Read the log

Enter the IRC channel now

Links 16/6/2010: No Android for Nokia; Sidux 2010-01

Posted in News Roundup at 5:48 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open Source Software for Social Networking

    Mοѕt οf thе open source software programs fοr social networking ѕο far аrе free. One thаt charges іѕ PHPizabi bυt despite thаt thеrе аrе still people willing tο υѕе іt. Sοmе οf іtѕ features include being аbƖе tο access іt through уουr desktop, communicating wіth friends іn thе chat room аnԁ maintaining a contact system.

  • Curtin Sarawak ECE Students Shine In Open Source Contest

    Students of Curtin University of Technology, Sarawak (Curtin Sarawak) have won two prizes in the Sarawak Open Source Competition organised by Sarawak Information Systems Sdn Bhd (SAINS).

  • Open Source EGL Means an RPG Generator Is Possible

    IBM wants to take Enterprise Generation Language open source. Last week at its Rational user conference in Florida, the vendor submitted a proposal to the Eclipse consortium that would place the bulk of EGL–a high-level language intended for Power Systems and mainframe shops that generates Java, JavaScript, and COBOL code–into the public realm.

  • Vuvuzela

  • Events

    • Linux 2010 trade show in Berlin

      As Michael Kleinhenz, member of the extended board of LinuxTag said, “in the long term open source has huge potential for saving costs. Thus it is all the more important to make funds available for research and investment, in order to get even more companies, public authorities and administrations to make use of open source. Open formats which everyone can use free of charge also increase transparency and improve security. More IT decision-makers should take this into account. LinuxTag contributes towards raising awareness of open source even more and thus propelling it even further.“

  • Mozilla

    • Firefox Losing Foothold on Linux Distros?

      When you install the Ubuntu Netbook Edition in October, don’t look for Firefox on the desktop — it won’t be there. Chromium, Chrome’s open source cousin, is going to be taking its place. After years of desktop dominance on Linux, is Firefox losing its foothold or is this an anomaly?

  • SaaS

    • New Open Source Cloud Data Integration Solution Runs on Amazon EC2

      Talend, another open source company, offers a data-integration-as-a-service solution, called Talend on Demand, which launched in 2007. I’d love to be able to tell you the difference between offering a cloud-based solution and a SaaS-based solution, but I’m still trying to figure that one out. Obviously, Jitterbit’s solution runs on Amazon EC2, whereas Talend is a subscription service that requires you to download a management product, but beyond that, I’m not sure. I’ll have to get back with you on that one.

  • Databases

    • Ingres Shows Faster Queries With VectorWise

      Open source company Ingres has released a vector version of its database, which it claims speeds up database operations enough to reduce the equipment required and greatly extend the use of realtime analytics.

  • CMS

  • Business

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Mendeley, the-Last.fm-of-research, rolls out premium packages to steady customer nerves

      Mendeley offers a secure online database for scientists, academics and researchers to store their research papers in the ‘cloud’, making it easier to share those documents with peers. The system also helps researchers find and connect to like-minded academics in similar fields by looking at and extracting relevant meta-data from the millions of research papers stored in its database.

    • Open Access/Content

      • The return on peer review

        A while ago I took a decision to only publish in open access journals. I recently received two requests to review articles for journals. Peer-review is one of the great unseen tasks performed by academics. Most of us do some, for no particular reward, but out of a sense of duty towards the overall quality of research. It is probably a community norm also, as you become enculturated in the community of your discipline, there are a number of tasks you perform to achieve, and to demonstrate, this, a number of which are allied to publishing: Writing conference papers, writing journal articles, reviewing.

      • What Do I Want from the Publisher of the Future?

        When I took on the role of Editor-in-Chief of this open-access journal, I began, for the first time, to think about scholarly communication beyond submitting my papers and getting them published.

Leftovers

  • High court quashes plan for fast food outlet near ‘healthy eating’ school
  • $11.7m judgment against Spamhaus slashed to $27,000
  • The Advertiser’s Doom

    Advertising (as is traditionally recognised) is inevitably in decline. This is because it resulted from an extreme asymmetry that developed between vendors and customers when vendors became mass producers, and could no longer meet their customers on a one-to-one basis. It was further exacerbated when vendors took advantage of mass communications technology (printing, broadcasting) to communicate UNIDIRECTIONALLY to their customers (current and potential). Very little communication has been possible in the other direction for decades if not a century or more, i.e. customers needing to communicate their wants and prices to potential vendors, especially mass producers.

  • Personnel Today goes online only
  • Science

    • Ancient Mars Had Vast Ocean, New Evidence Shows

      A vast ocean chock-full of microbes may have once covered more than a third of Mars’s surface, scientists say.

      The new evidence, from an analysis of dried-up Mars river deltas, adds to growing signs the red planet was once wet.

    • Nasa warns solar flares from ‘huge space storm’ will cause devastation

      Britain could face widespread power blackouts and be left without critical communication signals for long periods of time, after the earth is hit by a once-in-a-generation “space storm”, Nasa has warned.

    • New Worlds to Explore? Kepler Spacecraft Finds 750 Exoplanet Candidates

      The Kepler spacecraft has found over 750 candidates for extrasolar planets, and that is just from data collected in the first 43 days of the spacecraft’s observations. “This is the biggest release of candidate planets that has ever happened,” said William Borucki, Kepler’s lead scientist. “The number of candidate planets is actually greater than all the planets that have been discovered in the last 15 years.”

  • Security/Aggression

  • Environment

  • Finance

    • The Coming Financial Meltdown

      The problem is getting worse. Notional amounts of derivatives held by federally insured banks have risen to more than $200 trillion.

    • Obama’s Treasury Dept Working To Defeat Derivatives Proposal ‘Of Utmost Importance’ To Reforming Wall Street

      A Senate proposal to force banks to shed their lucrative yet risk-laden derivatives units — which is vehemently opposed by Wall Street — is gaining steam, picking up the support of some regional Federal Reserve chiefs with more on the way.

      Yet President Barack Obama’s Treasury Department, led by Timothy Geithner, continues to oppose the measure, Senate aides say, who add that Treasury is supporting Wall Street over Main Street by opposing the measure considered of “utmost importance” to financial stability.

    • Battle Over Reform
    • Sen. Blanche Lincoln’s derivatives-spinoff plan gains support in Congress

      An effort to force some of the nation’s biggest banks to spin off their lucrative derivatives-dealing operations appears to be gaining traction, as members of a House-Senate conference begin finalizing details of far-reaching new financial regulations.

    • Blanche, back to business as usual

      This one’s pretty amazing. So as you know, Blanche Lincoln had this tough primary, which she ultimately won narrowly. Once the seriousness of the challenge became apparent to her, she sidled to the left and toughened up her derivatives language and set out to prove that she was in the pocket of no one except the good people of Arkansas.

    • Watching Obama, yearning for FDR

      President Barack Obama took office more than 75 years after Franklin Delano Roosevelt was inaugurated, but, to Obama, that chill March day in 1933 must seem like only yesterday, so often has his performance as president been contrasted with that of FDR’s in the halcyon days of the New Deal.

    • Presidents, the Tax Burden, and Economic Growth

      This post also appears at the Presimetrics Blog. It contains some information that has appeared in a few different Angry Bear posts, but I think I’m starting to manage to put it into a more coherent narrative. And as I’m able to do that, I’m able to move slowly to the next part of the story.

    • SEC is hiring more experts to assess complex financial systems

      Today, the Princeton-trained nuclear physicist is investigating for the SEC what was behind the massive flash crash that sent the stock market into a tailspin last month. A specialist at culling conclusions from masses of chaotic information, Berman is in part trying to ascertain whether wrongdoing played a role.

      Although lawyers fill most of the SEC’s ranks, the agency has been hiring experts with specialized quantitative skills and those who have worked on Wall Street who are hip to its tricks.

    • New book offers another view of Goldman Sachs’s destructive power

      There’s been no shortage of books that purport to dissect the financial crisis and all that ails Wall Street. Get ready for another entry: Chasing Goldman Sachs, by Suzanne McGee of Barron’s, the latest journalistic effort to get the real story behind the implosion that’s still rocking the economy.

    • Goldman Sachs’ Ethics Reflect Its Ethos

      Goldman culture rewards hard-nosed aggressiveness and doesn’t put the client’s interests before those of the firm.

    • The Amazing, Versatile and Unethical Goldman Sachs Code of Ethics

      Now it seems that we were lacking a crucial document: the firm’s internal Code of Ethics, which Goldman Sachs recently made public. Under the provisions of this remarkable Code, what Goldman Sachs did to its clients wasn’t unethical at all; deceptive, conflicted, and unfair, yes…but not unethical, in the sense that it didn’t violate the Ethics Code itself. “Impossible!” you say? Ah, you underestimate the firm’s cleverness.

    • One Crowd Is Still Loyal to Goldman Sachs

      Despite all the bad headlines — the accusations of fraud, the talk of a big settlement, the risk, however remote, of criminal charges — there’s an inconvenient truth that’s been largely ignored: Most of Goldman’s big customers are not bolting.

    • Goldman Sachs Envy Drove Big Boys to Blow Up Money Grid: Books

      McGee, a contributing editor at Barron’s, isn’t out to bury Goldman Sachs Group Inc. or Blankfein, its chief executive officer. Her goal is, rather, to show how Wall Street bankers became preoccupied with their own short-term interests and drifted away from their raison d’etre — to funnel capital from investors to companies that need it.

    • Latest Assault on Goldman Sachs: Bed Bugs?

      As if a nearly two-year siege of negative attention hasn’t been enough of a distraction for Goldman Sachs, now the controversial investment bank appears to be battling a potential bed bug problem.

    • What’s Reputation Worth? Just Ask Toyota, Goldman And BP

      If reputational risk wasn’t a top issue for CEOs and boards of directors prior to 2010, the watershed events of the first half of this year should make them reconsider their priorities. Of course there’s the wrath of the American consumer wrought by BP, thanks to the deadly accident on board the Deepwater Horizon rig and the subsequent Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Before BP, however, two other companies sullied their sterling reputations and are still paying the price.

    • Mr. President, Here’s a Rear End You Can Kick: Goldman Sachs’

      Last week, President Barack Obama told us he is looking for someone’s “ass to kick.” He seems to be still looking for one, so perhaps he could use some suggestions.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • US record labels starts fake “citizen’s group” to support Canada’s DMCA

      A website in support of Canada’s proposed US-style copyright law looks to be a work of corporate astroturf, and signs point to the Canadian Record Industry Association (mostly composed of US record labels; many Canadian labels have left to form an independent lobby that opposes much of CRIA’s agenda) as the entity behind it. The group, Balanced Copyright for Canada, has bought headline placement on Bourque, and recently took down its member list after TVOntario reporter Jesse Brown announced that it appeared to consist of record execs from CRIA’s member-companies.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Deep packet inspection soon to be $1.5 billion business

      Deep packet inspection (DPI) hardware continues to sell, with ABI Research now estimating that vendors will move $1.3 billion of the stuff in 2015, up from $207 million in 2008. According to Infonetics Research, DPI will be a $1.5 billion business—by 2013.

      What will DPI devices be used for? According to ABI, “optimizing” mobile networks will be one of the chief uses—and by “optimizing” they mean limiting or prioritizing traffic from data-hungry mobile devices.

      “Brute force won’t solve this problem,” said ABI’s Aditya Kaul. “If you double the number of smartphone users, you can’t just spend $10 billion to double the capacity of your infrastructure.”

    • Armed police at Merseyside school after FBI warning

      The United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation raised the alarm after picking up a threat posted on social networking site Facebook.

      A 19-year-old man was arrested and later released on bail.

      More than 1,000 students, some of them taking their GCSEs, were in the Birley Street school at the time of the alert.

      All entrances and exits were sealed while police investigated.

      ‘Leaving this world’

      The school said it was the FBI who raised the alarm after internet scanning software picked up a suspicious combination of words.

    • Location Services Raise Privacy Concerns

      But the downside is that everyone who reads the posting will know the user isn’t home. On top of that, some services, such as Foursquare, can be linked to Twitter feeds.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

  • Copyrights

    • Massive P2P Conglomerate Backs New TV-Series

      The largest P2P conglomerate ever assembled is supporting today’s launch of the first episode of ‘Pioneer One.’ The show, made for and made possible by the P2P community, is actively promoted by uTorrent, Limewire and a variety of prominent torrent sites including The Pirate Bay and EZTV.

    • Geist: Opening up Canada’s digital economy strategy

      The federal government’s national consultation on a digital economy strategy is now past the half-way mark, having generated a somewhat tepid response so far.

      The consultation document itself may bear some of the blame for lack of buzz since the government asks many of the right questions, but lacks a clear vision of the principles that would define a Canadian digital strategy.

  • ACTA

    • WTO Report on TRIPS Council and ACTA

      The World Trade Organization has posted further information on last week’s Council meeting where India, China, and other developing countries raised concerns with the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement.

Clip of the Day

Introduction to the Semantic Web (2006)


Novell Still Markets “Intellectual Property (IP) Peace of Mind”

Posted in Marketing, Microsoft, Novell, OpenSUSE, Patents, Servers, SLES/SLED at 12:04 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Peace of mind, or else…”

Peace of mind

Summary: Novell still uses software patents protection as a business proposition to users of SUSE

Dustin Puryear, who has defended the Microsoft/Novell deal, no longer seems too impressed by the patents part of it. From Network World (IDG):

Microsoft Canada has a case study out on a Proof of Concept (POC) they did with Novell for a client.

[...]

Here is a quote from the case study: “The organization has intellectual property (IP) peace of mind from the commitment Microsoft and Novell have made to bridge the gap between open source and proprietary software.”

Sigh.

It’s good to see that people are not exactly tolerating this whole software patents protection racket (“intellectual property (IP) peace of mind” is a euphemism). The interesting thing is that in Google News, Novell has gone into a lot of pages in IT World Canada (IDG) in the months of May and June (possibly no accident). Maybe it’s just a coincidence, but actually it’s a bit of a nuisance and maybe it’s intentional. Novell advertises with IDG.

Also from Network World we have this column titled “SCO: So die already!”

Another shoe has dropped for the SCO Group — this makes about a dozen — but when will this outfit go away?

First the SCO Group sues IBM for billions in a case related to alleged intellectual property infringement, and then it starts threatening Linux and Linux users. Then, after Novell says that the SCO Group does not have the rights to Unix that it needs to sue and threaten, it sues Novell. Since then it has been mostly downhill for the SCO Group.

SCO has definitely lost, but as we noted before [1, 2, 3], it is not waving a white flag yet.

In other Novell news, despite Microsoft’s massive contribution to pollution [1, 2], “carbon footprint” is named as reason behind dumping Novell for Microsoft at WWF-UK:

Conservation lobbyist WWF-UK has moved to Microsoft Exchange and Outlook to reduce its IT costs and carbon footprint.

The not-for-profit environmental group had been using Novell Groupwise since 1995, but had concerns about Novell’s staying power and the availability of third party support.

Microsoft Exchange is not energy efficient. It uses Windows. They ought to have gone with Free software like Kolab, which is also far more secure than Exchange. This whole article smells like an advertisement, but we lack evidence to state/pose this as more than suspicion.

Closing off with some more Novell news, Adobe Flash is a hazard in SUSE, OpenSUSE Build Service makes some more waves [1, 2], and a business park where part of Novell is located gets revamped.

The business park is already home to IT firms Fujitsu and Novell, mortgage advisor GMAC-RFC and aviation product manufacturer Honeywell.

If Novell gets sold soon, it is likely to shrink.

Novell is a Fog Computing Company Looking for a Buyer

Posted in GNU/Linux, Novell, Servers, Virtualisation at 11:34 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Fog from plane

Summary: Novell’s thick blanket of fog is looking to engulf the computing world after largely-failed attempts to sell ‘patent protection’ for GNU/Linux; these efforts may be short-lived as reports about Novell’s negotiations suggest no withdrawal from sale

NOVELL’S negotiations of a sale are very quiet and there have been no reports about them for a while. As DZone points out, this issue is important also because Novell owns UNIX [1, 2, 3], which can potentially be used against Linux (even on a basis of false allegations).

Although we now know that Novell’s Linux-related patents are safe from SCO, there’s no telling what could happen when Novell is acquired (companies have started bidding).

Earlier today we found this report about Novell’s buyout situation. The most relevant part says:

While the answer given [to Elliot] by Novell’s board was a clear refusal, it also stated that it would be prepared to consider alternative offers. According to an May 2010 report in the The Wall Street Journal, about 20 suitors – mostly private equity firms – had approached the company with offers. At the time of publication of this article, no offer had been accepted.

Private ownership may allow Novell to take the drastic action required to turn its business around, should the intelligent workload management and “cloud enabler” strategies prove insufficient. There is, for example, an opportunity for a company with deep pockets to become a commercial open source consolidator. It would be ironic if the opacity of private ownership were to allow Novell to pull this off.

Novell tries new directions, mostly Fog Computing-oriented. The article above mentions IWM and there is also PlateSpin, which continues to receive some coverage [1, 2] although probably too little to make a turnaround.

Harald Welte Supports Apple in Enforcement Against Apple and Freedom-Hostile Apple Sympathisers Withdraw From GNOME

Posted in Apple, FSF, GNOME, GNU/Linux, GPL, Law at 11:18 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Harald Welte
Credit: Harald Welte, photo by Quinn Norton

Summary: Harald Welte remarks on GPL violations at Apple; ACCESS leaves the GNOME Advisory Board

SINCE the end of May we have been posting about half a dozen items about Apple’s hostility towards the GPL, which it excluded/removed rather than comply with. One of the well-regarded figures that publicly supported the FSF’s action against Apple was Harald Welte, whose second post on the subject ought to explain why Apple took a disappointing route that demonstrates its general approach.

So yes, by removing the software that was distributed in violation of the GPL terms, Apple has done legally the right thing: Reduce the danger/risk of committing further (knowing) infringement.

The FSF (and probably the Free Software community in general) of course want something else: For Apple to alter their app store terms in a way that would enable software authors to have Apple distribute their GPL licensed software in it. While this might be possible very easily with small modifications to their legal terms and to the implementation of the app store, it is probably not quite easy to make a legal claim and try to force this upon Apple.

Anyone always has the choice to either distribute GPL licensed software compliant with its license terms – or not distribute it at all. If Apple prefers the latter, this is very unfortunate (and you might call it anti-social or even anti-competitive) but something that they can very well do.

In better news, an Apple proponent/former employee and Internet bully/troll lost impact in the GNOME Foundation after he had repeatedly smeared the FSF and also took Apple’s side (not that the two events are related). Here is a compilation of messages of interest.

Xavier Bestel had made a comment to a gnome member regarding their choice of OS and E-mail client. The person promptly fired back with an anti software freedom tirade and blurted out insider info from ACCESS as to why they pulled out on funding. This is the same person identified by RMS as “a troll like enemy of the free software movement”. Normally I avoid mentioning this individual but the information is far too important. It’s public information that anyone can access.

Let me be very frank with you, Xav: this sort of behavior was definitely a contributing factor to ACCESS’ leaving the Advisory Board this past January, and for our lack of sponsorship for GUADEC this year and last. It was a directly contributing factor to my rescinding my offer to provide media training for potential GNOME spokespeople at GUADEC this summer.

This is good news for GNOME and for software freedom in general. ACCESS was like a rogue lobbyist. Combined with the latest news about Mono, Free software is on the right track.

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