On Battles and Wars
The date on the cover of this magazine is January 2000. Welcome to the 21st century. I'm writing this in November, but the events of this fall point to a very interesting beginning for the next millennium -- not only for Linux, but for the entire technology industry.
|Revolutionary Player: Open Source advocate Eric Raymond says that both Microsoft and the government should be abolished (interview, pg. 36).|
The date on the cover of this magazine is January 2000. Welcome to the 21st century. I’m writing this in November, but the events of this fall point to a very interesting beginning for the next millennium — not only for Linux, but for the entire technology industry.
November means only one thing in the technology biz — Comdex — and that’s where the Linux Magazine staff is right now. Talking to show attendees, you can’t help but notice that Linux is becoming a powerful force in mainstream computing. Both Bill Gates and Linus Torvalds gave back-to-back standing-room-only keynote addresses. Linux now has its own “show” co-located with Comdex — The Linux Business Expo.
But the attention that is being focused here is only a reflection of Linux’s impact on the rest of the technology marketplace. It seems like everyone is interested in Linux.
Many people believe that one of the primary reasons for Linux’s recent success is the Justice Department’s anti-trust lawsuit against Microsoft. The anti-trust suit has given Microsoft’s competitors and customers an opportunity to act freely and without fear of repercussions.
Finally, on November 5, Federal Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson issued a statement finding the Microsoft corporation to be a harmful monopoly. The judge’s finding was not the end of the case, but it represented quite a significant victory for the Department of Justice.
Meanwhile, Dave Whitinger (one of the founders of Linux Today) posted a piece on the Internet called “The Battle That Could Cost Us The War.” It was an article acknowledging that Microsoft is “winning” the Browser Wars, and that this particular battle will have more impact than any other in the fight to make Linux viable on the desktop.
As an interesting side note, Dave recently announced that he was leaving Linux Today and joining Jason Talley’s Atipa Linux Systems. Atipa is an up-and-coming player in the Linux hardware space with a strong sense of responsibility to the Linux community. Look for good things from them in the future.
The U.S. Justice Department’s short-term victory in the Microsoft case is just that — a short-term victory. It is still up to us as a community to stand together and provide a viable alternative to existing commercial software no matter what the courts decide.
If nothing else, the opening years of the 21st century are shaping up to be a heckuva battle. Have a great 21st century, and I’ll see you next month.
Adam M. Goodman
Editor & Publisher