An Open Letter to the US Navy (that everybody should read)

Marv Langston served as Department of Defense Deputy Chief Information Officer (CIO), where he helped initiate the Global Information Grid, Public Key Infrastructure - Common Access Cards, and led the Defense Department Year 2000 transformation. Prior to that he held positions as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Navy for C4I, Navy's first CIO, and Director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Information Systems Office. In 1999, Government Computer Week magazine honored him with an Executive of the Year award. More recently he wrote an Open Letter to the US Navy leadership that I believe applies to all who are thinking about the right go-forward IT strategy for the new year and the new decade.

Open Source, MySQL, and trademarks

Greg Stein (Apache developer and all-around nice guy) made an off-hand comment about open source trademarks in an article(How to Screw Your (Open Source Software) Customers). He was talking about how many users of MySQL have actually using a purchased proprietary licensed copy of the software, and not the open source licensed copy. MySQL's business model uses dual licensing: the GPL, and for the folks whom its strictures are unacceptable, a standard proprietary license.

Open Source and the future of SugarCRM

The following is a comment I left on a blog posting by John Mark Walker at OStatic.

I would be delighted to see Larry Augustin acting as the CEO of an Open Source company, but my knowledge of his past actions makes me dubious. Will SugarCRM remain faithful to the open source model? Or will it be carved up into a mixed-up model of giving away freely that which the company deems to be "low value" and keeping proprietary what the company deems to be "high value"?

Linux leads in Top500 supercomputers, again and even moreso

As families go, the Linux operating system family has become the family among the Top500 supercomputers, running on 89.20% of all systems. Proprietary Unix, which used to the the preferred OS for these supercomputers in the 1990s is down to 5% share, and Windows is reported to be running on exactly 5 systems, for a 1% share.

Project management lessons from the FreeDOS Project

A lot of people seem to think that open source is a magic solution to project management and that open source projects will automatically attract a large and healthy community of contributors and users who will improve the software. This, of course, is not the case. In fact, creating a successful open source project is a really major and difficult effort. You have to deliver an initial promise that people find interesting, attract other people, then facilitate and lead the community, etc.


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