a curious Yankee in Europe's court

blog about living in Europe, and Italy

If you love Linux

Posted on the May 5th, 2008

Linux, the superstar of open source software, “has shifted from being a volunteer effort to being a corporate initiative,” writes Nicholas Carr in his blog ROUGH TYPE (“Open source as corporate joint venture” April 21, 2008).

Quoting from a recent Linux Foundation report, Carr reports:

Of the many thousands of changes that have been made to the Linux kernel over the past three years, fully 73.2% came from employees working on behalf of their companies. (Three companies – Red Hat, Novell, and IBM – accounted for 28.4% of all the changes.) Only 13.9% of the changes came from volunteers without a corporate affiliation, and the remaining 12.9% of changes came from developers whose affiliation is unknown.

Read all about it here.

Tagged with: ,
Reader Comments (0) Comments Off on If you love Linux

Is Negroponte’s $100 laptop idea too great for its own good?

Posted on the November 25th, 2007

Nicholas Negroponte’s much praised plan to provide very low-cost laptops to poor children around the world “has been derailed, in part, by the power of his idea,” according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal (“A Little Laptop With Big Ambitions – How a Computer for the Poor Got Stomped by Tech Giants,” by Steve Stecklow and James Bandler, Nov 24, 2007).

The major derailers? Microsoft and Intel. Last year, Intel introduced its own cheap laptop, price tag less than $300, for developing countries, according to the article, and earlier this year in China, Microsoft’s Bill Gates announced a $3 software package that includes Windows.

Why are the technology giants doing this? Reportedly, to drive back a threat to their future profits that Negroponte’s idea represents. The $100 laptop uses Linux and other open source software rather than Windows, and it doesn’t use Intel chips, the article states. It’s an idea that the big tech companies apparently do not want to become popular.

All’s well that ends well, however, may be the final verdict. According to the WSJ article, developing countries now have several cut-price laptop models available to them, in addition to Negroponte’s star creation. Perhaps Negroponte’s thinking out of the (proprietorial) box has started something rather interesting.

Reader Comments (0) Comments Off on Is Negroponte’s $100 laptop idea too great for its own good?