[svlug] Business models (was Re: RANT: Ubuntu is Evil)

Karen Shaeffer shaeffer at neuralscape.com
Wed Jan 20 21:52:22 PST 2010

On Wed, Jan 20, 2010 at 09:27:57PM -0800, Greg Lindahl wrote:
> Another big contribution is companies like Intel and IBM, who pay
> people to work on open source software so that they can sell more
> hardware and services.

Agreed. And this was the catalyst that transformed linux into a
world class business technology. I might be wrong, but I believe
that Intel and IBM were the first two corporations to invest
venture capital into the linux ecosystem. From this perspective,
I believe the GPL license was critical in inducing these corps to
envision the path to success using the linux ecosystem.

> Another contribution is anyone who redistributes GPLed software as
> part of a product, like all of the people shipping embedded Linux in
> products such as routers or tablets or phones or whatever. While the
> development company generally don't want to upstream their changes,
> they are available for others to look at and upstream.
> Interestingly, while you might think that the last group would tend
> towards BSD, much of the activity there is with Linux.

Yes -- There are a number of BSD appliances out there, but there are far
more linux based appliances. And I am aware of one very significant BSD
shop that has made the switch to linux. Its very healthy that companies
have a choice of business model for appliances with respect to BSD and
Linux. What works in one place may not be best at another. Choice is
good for the entire ecosystem.

 Karen Shaeffer
 Neuralscape, Palo Alto, Ca. 94306
 shaeffer at neuralscape.com  http://www.neuralscape.com

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