Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Back page page.
It's The Linux Portaloo, courtesy of Alan Cox. It's "a one-day hack" which provides a nice, concise view of news from several sites.
Spanish-speaking readers may want to have a look at Proyecto Lucas, which claims to be the largest repository of Spanish-language Linux documentation out there.
Section Editor: Jon Corbet
July 1, 1999
Letters to the editor should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Preference will be given to letters which are short, to the point, and well written. If you want your email address "anti-spammed" in some way please be sure to let us know. We do not have a policy against anonymous letters, but we will be reluctant to include them.
Date: Thu, 24 Jun 1999 20:56:07 +0200 From: Toon Moene <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: GNU Cobol I read with some amusement the following blurb in LWN of the 24th of June: > GNU COBOL is now under development, as a result of Rildo > Pragana's decision to release the source code for a COBOL compiler > he created for MSDOS years ago. Alan Cox has apparently thrown in > some patches, as has Rildo, and now it actually produces GNU > assembler (gas). Of course, the goal is actually to get it to produce > C code. That would definitely help a lot of old COBOL projects move in > the right direction ... [Thanks to David S de Lis] A casual reader might interpret the last sentence as meaning that the only way to save old Cobol projects is to translate the Cobol code into C. I think this a somewhat naive view on the reasons why code is maintainable or not. Cobol has its strengths in dealing with the processing of business oriented data: It supports a declarative syntax to enable complex conversions between machine and human readable data. Converting Cobol to C would do nothing to improve the control flow of the programs, while making its data handling completely unreadable. Unless the only human resource one has available is C programmers, I would strongly discourage such a conversion. What the world needs is a free Cobol compiler - if this is the way to get one, even if it is not within the framework of the GNU Compiler Collection (which would make it retargetable to other architectures than the Intel ia32 model, among other benefits), then so be it. -- Toon Moene (email@example.com) Saturnushof 14, 3738 XG Maartensdijk, The Netherlands Phone: +31 346 214290; Fax: +31 346 214286 GNU Fortran: http://world.std.com/~burley/g77.html
Date: Sat, 26 Jun 1999 12:48:03 -0400 (EDT) From: <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Mindcraft Mk. II. Well, the results are in, and we didn't win. What do we do now? Firstly, it's obvious that these benchmarks have shown portions of Linux that need attention. I am, therefore, hopeful that these failings can be addressed quickly -- I know that several solutions are already being bandied about. But that still doesn't change the fact that we actually *learned* stuff from the Mindcraft fiasco. 1) People *do* listen to the Open Source community. The mere fact that we were able to make them recognize how unbalanced the first test was, really says something. 2) More interestingly, IMHO, is the fact that we learned Linux's own weaknesses -- things we really hadn't been aware of before, or at least _as_ aware of. I therefore suggest that the Linux community, on its own dime, run some sort of annual benchmark between, say, Solaris X86 or SCO (which nobody uses, but would be good yardsticks), NT, and Linux. The results, regardless of which way they lean, would be made public -- failings would be able to be addressed, and triumphs could be crowed about. But regardless of the way it went, we'd *know* more. Perhaps, even, PC Labs would be willing to run the test; I could see them enjoying a certain amount of prestige from being the moderators, and I'm pretty sure they have no editorial bias. Lord knows they'd have more to lose from biased results than Mindcraft. We've learned a lot from the recent test -- instead of trying to ignore it, or think of it as a single data point, let's take advantage of it, in a way that "closed source", simply put, can't. Sincerely, Ken D'Ambrosio SysAdmin, Cisco Systems, Inc.
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 1999 09:17:38 -0700 (MST) From: "M. Leo Cooper" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: Linux Weekly News <email@example.com> Subject: MS Linux? Amidst all the speculation and rumors about Microsoft coming out with their own proprietary Linux distribution, it seems that no one has considered a much more likely scenario. When the Red Hat IPO hits the market, MS could buy up virtually all the offered stock for $100,000,000 or so (Bill could take it out of petty cash) and thus acquire a name brand Linux, not to mention the services of the Red Hat sales and service staff and their engineers and developers. The question is whether MS would actually gain from this. MS had long practiced the strategy of buying out competing proprietary products and either incorporating them into their line or just letting them die. Liquidating a single Linux distributor, even if it is the largest and most well-known one, would have little long term effect on the Linux community. But, ah, the perception of the corporate IT world, that's a different matter. Mendel They said, "You have a blue guitar, You do not play things as they are." The man replied, "Things as they are Are changed upon the blue guitar." ---Wallace Stevens =============================================== + http://personal.riverusers.com/~thegrendel/ + ===============================================
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 1999 22:12:45 -0700 From: Matt Ettus <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: EE CAD on Linux story The folks at intusoft (www.intusoft.com) are trying to gauge interest in a Linux port of their software, which is like spice, but with schematic capture and more features. They already have a solaris port, and said that 200 indications of interest would cause them to do the port. This would be a huge help to those of us EE's trying to get our companies converted over to Linux. You can send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or see their web page, http://www.intusoft.com