This is about the time of year where FOSS pundits decide to take a plunge and predict what the following year will bring. The only thing that is certain — and I can make this prediction with complete certainty — is that these same scribes will sit in the same place a year hence, shaking their heads and wondering what the hell they were thinking a year ago.
Of course, there’s no way I’m being left out of this exercise.
So what’s 2014 going to bring? Get ready.
Next year, 2014, will be the year of the Linux desktop.
OK, someone had to say it.
More likely, though, 2014 will be the year of the Linux gaming console, thanks to Steam OS and the hardware that Gabe Newell and his crew up in Washington state have announced will be released sometime next year.
We’ll have to see what’s in store there, but if that engine fires on all cylinders, then you can add wider acceptance of Linux in everyday life to the list of 2014 accomplishments, piling it atop the progressively increasing acceptance of Android, which is kind of/sort of Linux in spirit, if not in name.
The Steam OS/game console drama is going to be your big story of the year going forward, not some vaporware super-ultra-mega-smartphone or a TV console promised at CES a couple of years ago.
So remember where you heard it first.
Also in 2014 — and for many, this may be more of a warning than a prediction — I am going to be making some personal changes of my own, digitally speaking. Nothing earth-shattering, and the fact that the only way I’m using Ubuntu is only at gunpoint does not change (sorry to disappoint). You’ll have to stand by for news on that.
One more thing: While this is not FOSS-specific, it is still a good read. Melinda Byerley, a founder of Vendorsi, wrote this great blog post about how pattern recognition is, well, complete and utter bullshit, and we’d have a much better 2014 and later if folks seeking to fund and grow projects would stay the hell away from it.
Happy 2014, all, and don’t forget that SCALE 12X is coming up sooner than you think; February is right around the corner.
This blog, and all other blogs by Larry the Free Software Guy, Larry the CrunchBang Guy and Larry Cafiero, are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs CC BY-NC-ND license. In short, this license allows others to download this work and share it with others as long as they credit me as the author, but others can’t change it in any way or use it commercially.
(Larry Cafiero is one of the founders of the Lindependence Project and develops business software at Redwood Digital Research, a consultancy that provides FOSS solutions in the small business and home office environment.)