[svlug] Latest attack on Linux

Rafael Skodlar raffi at linwin.com
Mon Aug 4 23:10:16 PDT 2003

The answer is out there. Rick Lehrbaum, editor-in-chief of
LinuxDevices.com dissected the report that bothered me:


On Mon, Aug 04, 2003 at 02:44:10PM -0700, Joe Buck wrote:
> On Fri, Aug 01, 2003 at 12:46:05AM -0700, Rafael Skodlar wrote:
> > The latest attack on Linux seem to come in direction of embedded Linux
> > development.
> > 
> > July issue of RTC magazine, twice as thick as June issue, has a short
> > segment on "Study Challenges Cost Model of Embedded Linux Development"
> > by Tom Williams, Editor-in-Chief, alledging that development of a
> > typical project takes 14.3 months and 14.2 developers for Linux and only
> > 8.1 months with 7.9 developers for Windows. Study comes from Embedded
> > Market Forcasters, "premier market intelligence and advisory firm"...
> > and is contrary to what I learned in other publications.
> It's possible that this is valid in the sense that the statement you quote
> is not a lie.  The problem is that this kind of analysis does not suffice.
> With embedded systems, we have to consider both the non-recurring
> engineering (NRE) cost and the per-unit cost.
> Profit_per_unit = Sale_price - per_unit_cost - NRE / N_units_sold
> Precisely because of the much greater flexibility of embedded Linux (as
> compared to WinCE), it may make more sense to spend more up front to
> determine the best architectural tradeoff, to lower the per-unit cost.
> And then there's the fact that with WinCE, you have to pay a fee for every
> unit shipped; not so for embedded Linux.
> Finally, there's no indication as to whether these projects are of similar
> scope.


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