More threats to Microsoft
Mon Oct 20 11:52:50 GMT 2003 More threats to Microsoft
(Push for Open Source Link):
Although some analysts say open-source products may offer stronger security and greater reliability, the argument that they make it easier for systems to talk to each other falls apart if many of those systems are already Microsoft.
"Politically, there are only pros, but in terms of government employee productivity there are quite a few cons," said Schadler, the Forrester researcher.
When have politicians ever let little things like productivity interfere with political gain? It certainly is true that dumping Linux on Mass. government will cause confusion and turmoil, but the political tide is starting to demand it. Microsoft's awful security record doesn't help their case, and making Office into something that requires a Microsoft server just isn't feeding anyone's comfort index.
Sure, Microsoft can offer deep discounts (and already has), but politicians are more aware than anyone that these are just drug dealer ploys: free samples until you are hooked, and then we bleed your soul.
It's truly unfortunate that this SCO mess is clouding the picture for Linux. Other than that, all signals are saying that Linux can make a real leap forward to the desktop in spite of it really not being ready to do so. Of course, it is that very reality that is causing Microsoft and other vested interests to redouble their efforts to put Linux down.
I expect things to get very dirty. Microsoft isn't going to just stand idly by and watch state after state embrace Linux. If discounts and innuendo won't turn the tide, they'll push harder on the legal front, patents and copyrights, and quite likely attempts to invalidate the GPL and any form of Open Source. It won't be pretty, and we have to remember that it's never going to be clean and honest: there will be political alliances, complicated *redacted*-for-tat deal making behind the scenes, and general skullduggery. Technical merits are completely unimportant. In some ways that's unfortunate, but on the other hand, Linux isn't really ready for the desktop, so if politics make that less important than it otherwise might be, that can be good. We'll see..
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