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SCO Unix: Overview

© Tony Lawrence, aplawrence.com

This section of the site is entirely dedicated to the SCO lawsuits and related material. Like most people, I'm not happy about any of this, and think it will do Unix-like operating systems serious harm if they win.

One of the biggest problems SCO had is that they listened to their big customers. Of course they did. All good companies do, and that's what kills them: see Book Review: Innovator's Dilemma.

Big customers are important, but they are also dangerous: when you lose one of them, you've lost a lot. So SCO management listened to what it's best customers told them, and ignored the squawking from the peanut gallery.

For years SCO seemed nearly oblivious to the mice that were nibbling at their toes. Everything is great, sales are up, life is rosy. Let's go kill another woolly mammoth and not worry about these damn mice..

Listening to big customers is the surest course to disaster. Big customers don't innovate; big customers do everything they can to keep on doing what they have always done.

Worse than that, big customers are woolly mammoths. One of the benefits of the computer revolution is that little guys can now make a startup with very little capital: little bands of people and even individuals can now do things that only giant moneybags used to be able to do. That's happening in almost every industry, from making movies (digital movie cameras are now dirt cheap- and dirt poor people are starting to make films) to books (on demand publishing and electronic books aren't there yet, but they will be) to whatever- the barriers to entry are crumbling. You had better believe that Linux is a part of that, too: $1,000.00 for an OS can be too much money for a startup- and when that $1,000.00 OS is crammed with features little folk don't need, and is missing what they do need.. well, it's pretty obvious, isn't it?

This is why I think Linux will ultimately take over. Microsoft IS smart enough to listen to its small customers, but they still are driven by their own internal needs so they will make sometimes make bad decisons.

However, I'm not a SCO hater in the all-encompassing way that some are. I think SCO's management has made a terrible mistake, and I suspect they'll pay for that dearly. See SCO Sympathiser for more on that.

People using SCO operating systems should read Self defense for SCO Users.

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