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Is it just me . . .?

November 3, 2007 Leave a comment

A lot of times we see or hear things and wonder whether we’re the only ones who get the peculiarity or irony in what has revealed itself.

Like:

Is it just me, or has Ubuntu 7.10 made a significant number of people hit a proverbial “speed bump” in this latest upgrade? The reason I ask — my “upgrade” resulted in getting only a shell that I had never seen before, and as a result I had to revert to reinstalling the prior version of Xubuntu running on this machine — is because others who had done the upgrade had significant problems with their machines shortly afterward (many of whom, of course, righted their machines after a significant amount of adjustments, but is that how upgrades are supposed to work?). Don’t get me wrong: I like all the flavors of Ubuntu, even Kubuntu, but rather than drinking the Kool-Aid, you have to bring this stuff up when it happens for the good of the distro.

Is it just me, or do the these two people deserve more credit than they’re often given: Pamela Jones of Groklaw, and Ken Starks of HeliOS Solutions (also the blogger known as “helios“)? The former has earned my unwavering respect for doing what those in the both the legal and journalistic professions, by and large, have stopped doing; i.e., stopped doing the right thing in their professions. The latter — who as I’ve blogged in the past I have joined in a business venture — is tireless fighter for FOSS in the face of health issues that would floor the strongest of us.

Is it me, or is blogging, as I perceive it, harder than it looks?

[FSF Associate Member](Larry Cafiero, editor/publisher of Open Source and Free Software Reporter, is an associate member of the Free Software Foundation.)

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A lesson in dealing with the devil

July 24, 2007 Leave a comment

Lindows — I’m sorry, it’s Linspire — sold its soul recently to have Microsoft help them “build a better Linux” (waiting for laughter to die down). Here’s a list of what they got:

True Type fonts.

Windows Media 10 Player.

DVD Playback.

Patent (ahem) “coverage,” which many people might consider extorted “protection” money, but I digress.

That’s it.

This deal is worse than the Novell deal, says Pamela Jones at Groklaw, and outlines Linspire’s soul-selling-for-mere-pittance, line by line (almost), here. Being the journalist and legal eagle that she is (although she warns that you should consult a real attorney if the agreement affects you in real time), Jones goes to great lengths to show what a dog this deal is and displays, just as she has been tireless in the SCO case, just why it sucks to be Linspire these days.

At the end of her lengthy tome, she makes the following poignant observation which, going forward, should be at the forefront of the GNU/Linux discussion: “For myself, I think it’s time to think really seriously about who should be allowed to use the name Linux, before the trademark loses all its traditional meaning.”

Indeed.

Also, I can’t help wondering how long it will take the people at Linspire to grab pitchforks and torches and race through the streets of Lindowsland looking for Kevin Carmony in order to give him a good tar-and-feathering.

[FSF Associate Member](Larry Cafiero, editor/publisher of Open Source Reporter, is an associate member of the Free Software Foundation.)

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