Re: [unrev-II]MS exec: Open-source approach is flawed - ZDNet Discussion Zaplet

From: Eugene Eric Kim (
Date: Tue May 08 2001 - 10:34:05 PDT

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    On Mon, 7 May 2001, Eric Armstrong wrote:

    > The difficulty with proving the proposition is the invisibility of the
    > effect. Once, there were 20 different unix competitors. (That was not
    > a good thing, mind you. The lack of standards was apalling.) Now, there
    > is Linux and Solaris. Will others ever exist? It's hard to tell. It's
    > *extremely* hard to identify how much work is not going on in a given
    > area, due to the lack of ability to derive compensation from it.

    Before Linux and the free BSDs started becoming popular, the UNIX market
    was in decline. Microsoft was making serious inroads into corporate
    markets with NT, and the talk of the town was that UNIX was dead. In the
    past four years, the overall market for UNIX has once again been growing,
    and Linux and Solaris have been the only two major operating systems with
    increasing market share other than Microsoft. That doesn't sound much
    like killing an industry; sounds more like saving it from assimilation.

    > That is a great example. It shows how great things can happen. But to
    > whom does the browser industry now belong? To the only company that
    > was actually making a profit at the time (and that from doing other
    > things).

    To a company that wouldn't allow OEMs to license software from its
    competitors. The two major browsers at the time were both proprietary.
    Open source didn't kill the browser industry; a monopoly did.


    +=== Eugene Eric Kim ===== ===== ===+
    |       "Writer's block is a fancy term made up by whiners so they        |
    +=====  can have an excuse to drink alcohol."  --Steve Martin  ===========+

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