Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Commerce page.
The Cahners In-Stat Group has put out a bulletin stating that Linux is the telecommunications operating system of the future. Cahners In-Stat is one of these think-tank groups that puts out high-priced advice for corporate clients. Such groups have typically been somewhat unfriendly toward free software solutions, so it is interesting to see this point of view come out.
If you are not a subscriber to their services, obtaining a copy of this report will cost a cool $500; so most people will need to content themselves with seeing their press release. However, the author of the report (Brian Strachman) was kind enough to send LWN a copy for review.
Our impression: the report suffers from some minor technical inaccuracies. Cahners In-Stat evidently knows the telecom business better than it knows the Linux world. Nonetheless, they have clearly understood what the real benefits of open source software are. "It is this global community of millions of computer programmers making changes to Linux and sharing the results that have made it the advanced system it is today." The "free beer" aspect - no license charges - is mentioned in passing, but is not the main point. These people get it.
The telecom world is one that needs rock-solid reliability, and Linux is able to provide that. Cahners In-Stat thinks that the remaining obstacles to widespread Linux use ("legitimacy," applications) will be overcome shortly. As they say in their title, they believe that Linux is the operating system of the future for this field. It is a very strong endorsement.
Please contact Cahners In-Stat for further information, or if you are interested in obtaining this bulletin.
Corel has kept itself in the news this week with two separate announcements. First, Word Perfect 8 will be made available for free downloading, though for "personal use only." Interested people can preregister for the download on this web page.
Then, it was announced that Corel and Red Hat have formed a new partnership. Red Hat will produce a version of its distribution for the ARM processor, which will then ship with the Netwinder computer. Thus Red Hat becomes the official distribution for this machine. Happily, however, this is Linux, and the Debian distribution, at least, will also run on the Netwinder. Thus it is possible to buy this computer without being tied in to just one distribution.
For those interested in media coverage of the Corel events:
Pacific Hitech is bringing their TurboLinux distribution to the U.S. Market. TurboLinux is currently the most popular distribution in Japan; they hope to do well in the corporate market on the other side of the Pacific pond. Here is their press release on the move. The distribution business is looking ever more competitive.
Opera Software's attempt to produce a Linux version of the Opera browser has failed, at least for now. In a way this is not entirely surprising; the Opera folks are evidently trying to get the port done with volunteer labor, but Opera for Linux remains a proprietary program. As Eric Raymond remarks in this Wired News article, that just is not the way to inspire volunteer developers. Nonetheless, Opera for Linux would be a nice thing to have available; here's hoping that they manage to get things together.
Cybersource has announced a Red Hat Linux support program in Australia. Here is their press release.
We got a note from another new Linux systems VAR. This one is called The Computer Underground. They specialize in custom-built systems, and offer a variety of distributions which can be preinstalled.
Kurt Wall has made available an FAQ for Informix on Linux.
Does your car radio run Linux? If not, maybe you want to check out the 'empeg' unit. There taking registrations from people who would like to buy one... (Thanks to Edwin Metselaar).
Some new newsgroups have been created for discussion of Oracle on Linux. For now you have to connect to a dedicated server to get these groups; if they take off the effort will be made to get the groups made an official part of the Usenet hierarchy. Here's the announcement if you would like to tune in.
Amos Shapira wrote in to report another commercial product that is supported on Linux: the EMANATE Run-time Extensible Agent System from SNMP Research.
October 29, 1998