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August 10, 2004

welcome Kashmir

Quite refreshing to see the news piece related to Kashmir which doesn't have the routine violence coverage. Good economics beats bad politics any day.

Beginning of the long journey , lets welcome the start.

August 10, 2004 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Social Movement Versus The Litigation Machine

Every significant social movement invariably shakes the existing power hierarchy. When the hubs of influence are shifting as its happening in the world of Open Source there are few winners (customers for example) and lots of losers (it's not just the software vendors who are losing, list goes far and wide in the ecosystem. Keep an eye on the analyst community).

After my discussions at the LinuxWorld I have been gathering all the FUDs thrown around Linux and Open Source movement in general.

Microsoft settling their legal troubles, thus preparing ground for the oncoming patent fights ?
HP caught on the legal tightrope - whether to play Linux game or cater to the lucrative Hollywood market
IBM promising not to enforce their patent rights
OSRM claims Linux infringes on 208 patents (see you can build a reasonable business out of FUD. Thus confirming the fact that Open Source might be the next most lucrative area for the lawyers)
Bay Capital urging SCO to become litigation machine
Interpretation dilemma
How DMCA complicates the matter
Good overview here.

So next time when somebody asks you where is the money in Open Source , point that uninformed person to this link. FSF charging $875 for two day course on understanding the pits and black holes of GPL. If you do the numbers -

Number of enterprises
Number of IT Managers and decision makers
Number of educational and government agencies
Mandatory cross-sell and up-sells

and multiply that number by $875 and despite discounting it by 50% chances are you will be walking happily to the bank. Moral of the story - stay close to litigation machine and you will know your way to the bank.

August 10, 2004 in Open source | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 04, 2004

DOAP

DOAP -- Description of a Project -- is a metadata initiative aimed at describing the public resources associated with a software project, providing interoperability between software registry web sites and making life easy for project maintainers. This can be a good help for understanding and tracking those thousand odd Sourceforge projects.

According to Edd Dunhill this project will provide -

Internationalizable description of a software project and its associated resources, including participants and Web resources
Basic tools to enable the easy creation and consumption of such descriptions
Interoperability with other popular Web metadata projects (RSS, FOAF, Dublin Core)
The ability to extend the vocabulary for specialist purposes

Use cases for project descriptions include:

Easy importing of projects into software directories
Data exchange between software directories
Automatic configuration for resources such as shared CVS repositories or bug trackers
Assisting package maintainers who bundle software for distri

More details here. This one will be interesting to watch as more and more open source projects dot the landscape.

August 4, 2004 in Open source | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 02, 2004

We are in the stealth mode

Heard this statement from a friend recently. On one hand it sounded so much like 1998 and on the other it surprised me that the guy wont even tell me which sector this company is in. I joked whether this is dough nut company or a chip subsystem type startup. Nopeee can't tell.

Not that I cared that much but I was going on with my curiosity to understand that why would a company tell their employees not to tell others whether they are in soap business or in the laundry business. Is this behavior another indication that the Bay Area is once again moving into an irrational zone. Where the whole eco-system gets most worked-up. Starting with the 101 traffic.

August 2, 2004 in Entrepreneurship | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

More open source

OSRM is continuing on the subtle FUD sales strategy by digging out the patent dirt on Linux. and coming out with somewhat unsubstantiated assertion that - Linux potentially infringes 283 patents.

Research conducted jointly by non-profit body Public Patent Foundation and OSRM is bound to raise some concerns among the customer community. This is a serious (somewhat subtle) claim and discounting the fact that any large software is bound to have some gray areas (where lawyers usually make their money) this can still get dragged into that interpretation area where FUD usually shines.

In a related open source news , SugarCRM (rel link) landed with $2ml funding from Draper. This coming shortly after the Black Duck announcement, overall it's a great time for open source business models. Wont be surprised if we hear some more exciting announcements tomorrow at the LinuxWorld. I will be there.

Are we seeing a mini bubble around open source business models ?

August 2, 2004 in Open source | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack