· Naughties
· · 2005
· · · June
· · · · 13 (2 entries)

Microsoft and China · Boy, is the blogosphere ever a buzzin’ over MSN Spaces’ policy of not allowing yourself to label yourself with inconvenient words like “Freedom” or “Democracy”. Although I profoundly disagree with Scoble on this one, you gotta respect him for sticking his head out of the trench under heavy fire (here and here). Look, there’s nothing in the basic workings of the free market, nor in U.S. legislation, that says MSN can’t be Beijing’s bitch to buy some bloggers. But remember, it is a free market, on this side of the Pacific. So first, I suspect there’s a lot of people—the kind of creative, independent-minded people that Microsoft needs—who’d generally rather not work at a company that does that. And second, there are a lot of other people who’d prefer to avoid buying products from one. [Update: I’m getting pushback because it’s been claimed that Sun sells some of the gear in the Great Firewall. If true (and it’s believable), that’s sad. It feels quite different to me from pro-actively suppressing the use of the words “Freedom” and “Democracy”; but make your own judgment. Anyhow, read the disclaimer at your right; it’s me, not Sun, that’s talking.]
The Unix Horse Race · The big OpenSolaris launch is today; there’s a huge crowd of bloggers giving you the deep technical poop, so I’ll stick to sports metaphors. I don’t know what the word “Unix” means legally, but if it’s got a real fork(), it’s Unix to me; that includes GNU/Linux and the BSDs and Solaris. Which is to say, they’re more alike than they are different, and they’re all pretty good. Nobody cares much about the history now; it’s about fast, reliable, and cheap, and that’s as it should be. If you look at the core engineering teams for Linux and Solaris, neither of them is dramatically bigger than the other, so I think the race is pretty fair. My personal take? At the moment Solaris is ahead in scaling and observability and production management. The good Linux distros are ahead in installing and packaging (“In the Beginning there was nothing. So God said apt-get install light”) and user interface. Is there a downside? The BSDs might get crowded out in all the excitement, and that would be sad. Aside from that, it’s gonna be fun to watch. And the people who are lined up to bet are waving real money, lots of it.
author · Dad
colophon · rights
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