The FSFE’s founder, Georg Greve, is one whose business depends on some Nokia-owned work that it offloaded or neglected (for the time being Qt will live). He writes:
Elop to leave Nokia in 2012? That must be some kind of record for most damage done to major business in shortest time. http://is.gd/7yRqjU
This has really hurt KDE/Qt, as we predicted even back when Nokia got Trolltech. This latest corruption by a Microsoft mole is bound to damage the Finnish economy and to anybody who says that Microsoft creates job or adds something to the economy, look no further than Nokia to see the very opposite. Microsoft has put many companies and many people/families out of a job just so that its billionaires can become richer (from the destruction of others). The question is, which will be Microsoft’s next victim? We already saw Yahoo! and Novell (and countless others before that, e.g. Corel) totally exploited and left naked by Microsoft. A few years ago we showed that Microsoft had begun Juniper entryism as well. It put many executives in there, including the CEO’s position. Now, watch this report titled “Microsoft and Juniper warned of dangerous IPv6 hole”. It says:
Security experts are urging Microsoft and Juniper to patch a year old IPv6 vulnerability so dangerous it can freeze any Windows machine on a LAN in a matter of minutes.
Microsoft has downplayed the risk because the hole requires a physical connection to the wired LAN. Juniper says it has delayed a patch because the hole only affects a small number of its products, and it wants the IETF to fix the protocol instead.
This is yet another example of M$ caring about licensing fees and not service. Use GNU/Linux. The problem has already been fixed in Linux.
As companies keep leaving Windows and are also leaving the #1 cash cow of the monopoly (Office), expect Microsoft to cut corners, distort the market (e.g. antitrust complaints by proxy, patent litigation by proxy), attack competitors, change laws by lobbying, and bribe for lucrative contracts (like in the case of OOXML). Office sales declined and so have Windows sales. When will Microsoft repay its debt? Right now it is passing all the costs and the risk to other companies such as Nokia. This has got to stop. █
Summary: KDE joins OIN (Open Invention Network), the defensive patent pool which seems to be a concerning development to foes of GNU/Linux
THE OIN is on a roll. Some days ago the ‘umbrella’ organisation of LibreOffice joined the OIN following several others who sought defence from the patents Novell tactlessly gave to Microsoft et al [1, 2]. The H is yet another publication which covered it following Glyn Moody’s claims that the OIN is “in the spotlight” amidst interesting new developments. We could not be happier seeing that Microsoft Florian loathes the OIN because it means that OIN is indeed harming Microsoft’s agenda. OIN is mostly the creation of IBM (Rosenthal roots) and whilst IBM is not against software patents, they would have prevailed in the US even without IBM’s involvement, so IBM’s engagement in defence of Free software using patents is a nice addition to its high-profile sponsorship of the FSF, which praises OIN on occasions (Microsoft Florian mocks the FSF, just as he mocks anything that’s a threat to Microsoft because it cannot embrace and extend it).
The latest addition to OIN is KDE, which had the news announced here, discussed in some places like this LWN discussion thread, and then covered here:
Open Invention Network (OIN), the company formed to enable and protect Linux, today extended its community with the signing of KDE as a licensee. By becoming a licensee, KDE has joined the growing list of organizations that recognize the importance of leveraging the Open Invention Network to further spur open source innovation.
The ‘smell test’ for institutions that claim to be supporting software freedom often ought to be Microsoft’s reaction, applied in reverse. Later on we’ll show that EIFv2 is bad news, based on Microsoft’s reactionary statement. █
Summary: Quick endorsement of Fedora 14 and KDE 4.5.x
YESTERDAY there were almost no posts at all. The reason is, well… I was setting up a new machine that had arrived with Windows on it. Obviously I just wiped Windows and installed the latest Fedora 14 with KDE desktop. I am sorry to say that I have not found a single bug yet. Any person who looks for something that works brilliantly out of the box and is easy to use should take a look at the KDE spin of Fedora 14. I have not had a chance to test the main ISO, which is GNOME based. I downloaded it but did not burn it. Either way, I am sticking with Fedora and the least I can do is recommend it to other people. The KDE team also deserves praises for excellent work it did to deliver 4.5.x, which is polished. Another user of Fedora with KDE is Pamela Jones from Groklaw. █
Summary: A polite call for KDE to put its weight behind LibreOffice
“LibreOffice and the Document Foundation are for sure a hot topic today here at OWF,” wrote Red Hat’s Jan Wildeboer this morning.
This is an important cause at this particular stage, primarily because of Oracle. The goal it to override OpenOffice.org (notice how it came from proprietary StarOffice to dual with OpenOffice.org and now all the way to freedom with LibreOffice).
LibreOffice boasts a growing list of supporters (growing as we speak), but KDE has not yet been added to this list. GNOME has been there for several weeks (based on information Techrights received in advance [1, 2]), so we can only assume that KDE was approached for support and declined.
“[W]hy does the steering committee and founding member list have only two developers?” –Aaron Seigo, Plasma developerAaron Seigo, one of the most prominent voices from KDE, has voiced his opinion in Identi.ca by writing: “best of luck to Libre Office, as Oracle’s ship of F/OSS sinks faster and faster … though somehow i doubt they care… though i have to say .. “Document Foundation”? really? contender for “Poor Foundation Name Of The Year”, subcategory “Vague and Misleading”… and why does the steering committee and founding member list have only two developers? (inc one guy who worked on the KDE integration)… are there really that few developers left, or are the local(ization) teams for OO.o the managerially savvy ones?”
For reasons we explained this morning, Oracle is not a safe company to trust. Can KDE explain why it has not added itself to the list of supporters, or at least not yet? Might it be because the KOffice team collaborates with OpenOffice.org on some code?
“To suggest that KDE is hard to use because of versatility is not correct based on these experiences. It’s more of a stigma.”Interestingly enough, the page appears to have just been deleted (it worked earlier and the front page still has the content). Could backlash have caused it? It starts by saying “I originally bought a Macbook to use as a nice Linux laptop and for some iPhone and Qt OSX development.” The funny thing is that this person bought an overpriced Mac and then said he was “Moving to OSX” (which is what’s already installed on the computer to begin with).
Earlier this week I spent hours installing PCLinuxOS (with KDE 4.4) for some other people and they found it very simply to use, even as former XP users with no GNU/Linux experience at all. No guidance was needed. To suggest that KDE is hard to use because of versatility is not correct based on these experiences. It’s more of a stigma. █
Summary: A glimpse at the latest news from Nokia, VMware, Novell, and SCO
MeeGo is at stake when a Microsoft president becomes Nokia’s CEO [1, 2, 3, 4]. Nokia is crucial to the survival and thriving of Free software projects like Qt (the very essence of a lot of KDE) and also MeeGo, which is co-developed with Intel (a successor to Moblin, which was once managed by the Linux Foundation too). “Nokia silent on MeeGo” says this new forum thread which worries the person who mentioned it earlier:
It sounds like Nokia has something cooking in the background, or they are totally clueless. I am not sure which, but I guess we will find out soon enough.
Hopefully they have something going on. With their ownership of Trolltech and Qt, the same toolkit used to create KDE, Nokia has the ability to define and influence development tools, which they can use across Symbian, Meego, and any other platforms they choose to support.
If Nokia screws up with MeeGo and with Qt, then surely some people will point the finger at the company’s new CEO from Microsoft.
Jos Poortvliet from KDE and OpenSUSE (OpenSUSE is a proponent and key participant in KDE) may soon work for several ex-Microsoft executives, who are now running VMware and want to buy SUSE. Poortvliet is still trying to determine how to best deal with the community he was assigned to manage. Would volunteers work for VMware like they worked for Novell? Anyway, from Poortvliet’s latest post:
Your strategy team has been working hard, as promised, to incorporate the comments you have all given over the last few months into a new document. That document aims to describe where openSUSE stands right now, what users we target, what we are doing. Who we are has been covered pretty decently in the current community statement and now we would like to present you with what users we target.
I can guarantee any of my sources inside Novell cannot talk about anything one way or the other, but as soon as I can find some answers to the question “What does this mean for openSUSE?” I will be sure to report back.
“One might say that VMware has been causing a brain drain and a mindshare drain in F/OSS ever since it was taken over by former Microsoft staff.”OpenSUSE is rightly called “a distro that matters” in this new post, but its developers should fork to save it from VMware. Just look at what VMware did with Zimbra. It’s almost unheard of after the acquisition because VMware is a proprietary software company with even less commitment than Novell to “open source”. One might say that VMware has been causing a brain drain and a mindshare drain in F/OSS ever since it was taken over by former Microsoft staff.
1. Fending off Red Hat: No doubt, Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst plans to attack VMware. The strategy involves Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV). Within the halls of VMware, there is some concern about RHEV, which is based on the open source Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM). Whitehurst believes RHEL and RHEV can eventually topple VMware the way Linux toppled the traditional Unix market. But it’s going to take time for Red Hat to strengthen RHEV with management tools that match VMware.
Instead of allowing RHEV to gain some momentum, VMware could use SUSE Linux to launch a preemptive strike and attack Red Hat’s core Linux business.
People have been saying that VMware would attack Red Hat for quite some time. Here is the summary from Slashdot along with a very long discussion:
minutetraders writes “According to the Wall Street Journal, VMware is attempting to acquire Novell’s SUSE Linux operating system business. This move would give VMware a full stack of enterprise software and allow it to establish itself as a full-blown infrastructure and software vendor in direct competition with Red Hat.”
Yes, it’s Red Hat again. Should SUSE not try to replace Windows instead? How much of a role do the roots of VMware’s management in Microsoft play here? Groklaw once suggested that confrontations between VMware and Microsoft are just staged. Right now Groklaw has this hypothesis about the UNIX virtual 'products' sale by SCO (also covered by The H right now):
As you have witnessed in the past decade as SCO has sued one customer after another, ensuring continued customer viability has always been at the top of SCO’s bucket list and close to its noble heart. My question is, might the timing of all this be connected with the rumored sale of Novell? Not to be cynical, but with SCO, I always assume there will be vultures.
It seems not impossible that former Microsoft executives in Nokia and in VMware help suck the core of F/OSS out of the F/OSS world. It’s just a theory and it will be tested over time. █
“Pamela Jones [...] has told Infoworld that Microsoft will be the next SCO Group”
openSUSE is far more conservative when it comes to upgrading packages in the stable release. Making it a much more stable platform. So, that means you’re always a bit behind and you can’t have the latest and greatest? No! openSUSE users CAN have their cake and eat it too. Thanks to the Build Service, newer versions of enduser applications and libraries can be entirely build against the stable distribution, lowering the number of packages you need to pull in and thus increasing stability.
To a certain extent, Poortvliet is responsible for marketing KDE but his paymaster urges him to market OpenSUSE. How can objectiveness be maintained under such pressures? Can one consolidate two roles without a conflict of interest?
Historically, Novell has been good at marketing, not necessarily at execution (not in recent years anyway, as it suffered a brain drain). Some years ago Novell made commercials for GNU/Linux, but ever since it signed a deal with Microsoft there has been almost nothing of this kind. Even right now, the videos produced by Novell promote Novell Teaming (proprietary) and user “Novelldemo” uploaded many Novell Pulse videos this month, starting with this one. Pulse is also proprietary. It has been a long time since Novell produced anything promotional about Free/open source software. User “Novell” in YouTube uploaded 6 success stories at the beginning of this month [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6] (there is another one about Novell’s booth at VMworld 2010), but that too has nothing to do with software freedom.
It sure seemed like several years ago KDE rebuilt and rewrote the site so as to introduce KDE as “Free software” (as in freedom, not open source). It would be a shame if Novell’s involvement in KDE changed that. KDE is already being used to promote OpenSUSE (e.g. the live CD). █