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We have a special responsibility because we are the king toolmakers of
the digital age; our work and our values will have a large part in
shaping the future of communications and media everywhere. We have a
special need because the way these intellectual-property issues work out
will come back to haunt us more than most if we get then wrong.
-- from Eric S. Raymond's Two faces and Big Lies, August 2000
The August 2000 LinuxWorld Conference and Expo is held in San Jose, California. Everything about this conference, from its long sold-out exhibit space to the incredible pile of commercial announcements, has told the wider world in a language it understands that Linux and free software are here to stay. LWN's coverage from the conference is available here.
Even Forrester Research seems to join in the celebration with a new report, covered in Wired News, which predicts great gains for open source software. "Forrester analyst Carl D. Howe predicts that Microsoft's business model will clash so severely with the new open-source-fueled development and distribution models that the company's market share will shrink for the first time in its history. And eventually, the report forecasts, MS will become little more than a 'legacy vendor,' offering support for its antiquated products."
Debian wins the IDG/Linus Torvalds Community Award, check included, at the August 2000 LinuxWorld conference.
Debian 2.2 is released. The first major release out of Debian in a year and a half contains no end of new features, additional packages, and more. LWN covered the press conference, see Liz Coolbaugh's report for the details.
Caldera Systems and SCO announce the purchase deal that has been rumored. Caldera Systems will pick up the Server Software and Professional Services divisions of SCO. A new holding company, called simply "Caldera, Inc." will be created to take possession of the new groups. Ransom Love will be Caldera Inc.'s CEO, while David McCrabb from SCO will become the President and COO. For more information, see this SEC filing from Caldera.
Transmeta puts in its IPO filing.
The Netscape and Java "Brown Orifice" exploit is reported by Dan Brumleve. He reports that Netscape could be used to "allow arbitrary network access and read-access for local files and directories." He put up a website, entitled "Brown Orifice", under which he ran a webserver to demonstrate the problem.
We feel that we have a superior product than GNOME, and that people
will see this when KDE 2.0 released. The press GNOME is getting
will make us re-double our development and our PR efforts. In fact
we do not have much of a PR presence, we prefer to rely on our
technology. But that is going to have to change. GNOME is getting
a lot of backing and we have to speak up. We plan on getting KDE
out there more in the press. We will let GNOME have their week,
but the war is not over :-) I will tell all of our millions of
users out there, that KDE is here to stay!
-- KDE spokesperson Robert Williams from an email to LWN
Transvirtual announces the of the "PocketLinux Framework" for handheld systems, complete with a companion web site at PocketLinux.com.
Agenda Computing announces the "Agenda VR3" Linux-based PDA in three variants, with the entry system going for $149. A good look at the Agenda system can be found in this LinuxDevices.com article.
IBM's Linux-powered wristwatch,announced on August 7, 2000, drew a great deal of attention this month
Bluepoint Linux Software announces that it has the top spot for software sales in China, according to Federal, "the largest Chinese software vendor." Note this is not a comparison of Linux sales, but of general software sales. "Bluepoint Linux 1.0, Tianhe Mechanical CAD and Microsoft Office 2000 (Chinese version) are currently ranked as number one, two and three on the Top 10 list".
Having seen Linux from its early days as a fun toy
through to the latest figures on its usage the one thing I have learned
is that predicting the future in computing is not very practical.
-- Alan Cox in this interview with O Linux
Sleepycat Software joins with the MySQL folks to launch a new system called MaxSQL. Essentially, Sleepycat's Berkeley DB transaction engine has been grafted into MySQL, giving the latter the full transactional capability that it has lacked for so long. The result has been released under the GPL, and is available from MaxSQL.com.
The Tux2 filesystem is released for the first time. Tux2 resembles the journaling filesystem efforts in that it seeks to produce a crash-proof system. Initial tests appear to confirm that its "phase" tree approach yields better performance than journaling. Tux2 is the work of Daniel Phillips; it was sponsored by innominate AG.
IBM announces the release of the Andrew Filesystem (AFS) under the IBM Public License. The IPL is, according to the FSF's license list, not compatible with the GPL. Thus, AFS will not become part of the standard Linux kernel.
IBM releases SashXB as open-source under the LGPL license. "SashXB is a technology that allows web developers to access the native GUI". See the SashXB for Linux page for more information.
IBM announces that the Jikes Java compiler project is now available as an open-source project. It's now licensed under the IBM Public License.
Unofficial word that IBM plans to release the large number of OS/2 printer drivers as open source surfaces from a "printing summit" convened by VA Linux Systems in Sunnyvale
The Open Source Development Lab is created. "Enable Open Source developers to build data center and telco class capability into Linux, accelerating its growth into enterprise e-Business deployment and development.", reads the OSDL mission statement. The OSDL is a well funded collaboration between HP, IBM, Intel and NEC, with additional support from Caldera, Dell, Linuxcare, LynuxWorks, Red Hat, SGI, SuSE, TurboLinux, and VA Linux Systems.
High Availability and Clustering is the subject of a number of August 2000 LinuxWorld announcements. Such as:
HP announces its increased interest in Linux. Included is the designation of Linux as a "strategic operating system," the intent to release MC/ServiceGuard - its high availability clustering system - for Linux; the ability to run Linux binaries on IA-64 HP-UX systems; a couple of its workstations will be made available with TurboLinux installed; and there is a 64-bit PA-RISC port available. Check out the Linux HP web site for more information.
Michael Cowpland resigns as the President of Corel. He plans "to dedicate his time and resources to new start-up opportunities."
VA Linux Systems reports its results for its fiscal year ending July 28, 2000. The company brought in $120 million over the year, a nice increase over 1999's $18 million. The company is still losing money, of course, but less so than before.
VA Linux Systems launches the Open Source Developer Network site, a repackaging of the Andover.Net sites with Linux.com and SourceForge.. VA also announces a number of "charter members" of OSDN, including Compaq, EMC, Hewlett-Packard Company, IBM, Intel and Sun.
Red Hat announces that it is acquiring C2Net, providers of the Apache-based Stronghold web server. The acquisition is happening for just under 2 million shares of stock.
The plans for Jabber, an XML-based instant messaging platform, are unveiled by Webb Interactive Services.
EBIZ and LinuxMall.com announce the finalization of their merger agreement. The balance of power would appear to have moved a little toward EBIZ during the negotiations: the headquarters of the company is now in Scottsdale, AZ, and LinuxMall's founder Mark Bolzern now has the role of "open source community evangelist."
Caldera Systems posts its quarterly results (announcement here). Revenue for the quarter was $1.2 million, up 9% from the year before. They turned in a net loss of $7.5 million in that time.
Matt Robinson releases the 2.0 version of his Linux kernel crash dump analyzer.
Dan Farmer and Wietse Venema release The Coroner's Toolkit (TCT), a set of tools for doing a post-mortem on a Unix system after a break-in. The tools are released under a combination of the IPL (IBM Public License) and a modified version of the BSD license.
XEmacs/GTK is released. William M. Perry has completed his project (sponsored by BeOpen) to bring XEmacs into the GNOME world.
The Tcl Core Team is created. In July 2000 John Ousterhout posted a call for volunteers for a "Tcl Core Team" to manager the Tcl core. By August, Michael McLennan posts the announcement for a community election of the new Tcl/Tk Core Team.
The LI18NUX2000 Globalization Specification is released by the Free Standards Group. This specification is aimed toward standardizing the internationalization features of Linux distributions. The standard itself can be found on the LI18NUX site. LI18NUX has taken a step toward showing how best to support the world, and that is a good and useful thing.
Grant Taylor launches his web site, LinuxPrinting.org, dedicated to information about printing under Linux.
The Linux Test Project is announced by Nathan Straz of SGI. The project has set out to provide a comprehensive regression test system for the Linux kernel - something that has been missing for a long time.
The Timpanogas Research Group announces a project to create an open source, NetWare-compatible operating system in 2001. TRG has already been supporting a free NetWare filesystem for Linux; the kernel for the new system is available as well.
HA-Linux is a new, high-availability distribution from Motorola, which is based on Red Hat 6.2 and runs on Motorola's boards.
Blue Cat Linux 3.0 is announced by LynuxWorks.
SuSE 7.0 is announced. With 7.0, SuSE is splitting the distribution into flavors: the "personal" and "professional" editions. The personal variant is aimed at newcomers and desktop applications, while the professional version is set up for servers.
SSH Communications eases the restrictions placed on its licensing terms for ssh in July 2000. It can now be used free of charge on Linux and the BSD variants for any purpose. There is a free software alternative available, OpenSSH, from the folks at OpenBSD.
VINE integrates mail and news into VI If you are tired of the VI editor's small memory footprint and fast execution speed, check out VINE, the Vim Integrated News and Email project. Kidding aside, this might be a useful addition for the VI die-hards. (Found on NTKnow - where else do you look for that sort of thing?).
acid and Jimi Hendrix at the Woodstock of old, lager and Linux drew
160 programmers to England's Lake District. So what happens when
technosavants -- all but four of them men -- gather amid the majesty
that inspired William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge? They
compute with abandon."
-- The Wall Street Journal covers the Linux Beer Hike
VAR'AQ: Finally, programming support for Klingon
For the fearless only, NTK reports on var'aq,
a "stack-based, Forth-ish language, with Lispish data structures, and
an object-verb-structure grammar designed for use by Klingons."
Comments project leader Brian/B'Rian Connors/C'onnarrghs, "'If you
are afraid to tread in hostile territory like this, you might want to
hold off on playing with var'aq for a while.'" NTK retorts, "But
then, maybe you are weak, and dishonour us all with your cowardice,
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