Open Source Contributors

With the recent news of Sun Microsystems buying MySQL AB for one billion dollars (insert Dr.Evil’s evil laugh here), I hear plenty calling Sun the largest contributor to open source. I beg to differ.

Sun is doing a lot for open source, there is no argument about it, and whatever they do is much appreciated. But calling them the largest contributor to open source, is a little bit too far fetched, I think. First of all, let’s see what we are talking about. Here is the list of open source stuff from Sun (according to their open source initiative page):

  • Solaris Enterprise System / OpenSolaris
  • Linux from Sun
  • StarOffice / OpenOffice.org
  • NetBeans
  • OpenSPARC
  • Java

That’s something, but doesn’t qualify for the number one contributor. First of all, these are mostly Sun’s own offerings. Secondly, some of these (Java and OpenSolaris) have been opened to be saved. They were open when it was pretty much obvious to everyone that if they are not, they aren’t going to last very long. Or, at least, they won’t prosper as they should. Thirdly, the effort that was put in some of these (StarOffice / OpenOffice.org) by Sun isn’t all that impressive. I mean, yeah, they bought and opened StarOffice. People jumped on it and started to improve it. And it improved a lot. But it’s still huge, bloated, and clunky, after all these years…

As I said, it’s still appreciated. There is plenty of good in Sun’s open source initiative. But I think there are companies that have done more good to open source than Sun did. I think that IBM did a great deal more. And it did it before anyone else, when open source needed help the most. Then, I think Google has done plenty and is still doing a lot. And, I think it’s not fair at all to forget Red Hat. These guys made a lot of money on open source software, but they were more than willing to share and invest those money back into the community.

What Did You Change Your Mind About in 2007?

Slashdot runs an excellent discussion on the topic of “What Did You Change Your Mind About in 2007?“.  If you want to learn more about what people on the Web had changed their minds in 2007, try this Google search – plenty more there.

What did I change my mind about in 2007?  Short answer: Google.  Continue reading for the long version.

Continue reading “What Did You Change Your Mind About in 2007?”

Conspiracy of context sensitive advertising

I think I’ve uncovered another conspiracy by Google, particularly with their context sensitive advertising service AdSense. It’s not a bad conspiracy – as far as I am concerned, they are trying to do a good thing. But still, it’s a mean way to go about it.

A reader of this blog left a comment to one of my earlier posts about media brain wash, a story about Dell notebook exploding at some conference. Jon agreed with me that this story was a pure media hype. In his comment he said exactly this:

Now it won’t be long before some terrorist hops on a plane with Dell laptop batteries strapped all over his body. I agree, this story is media hype.

In order for me not to miss any comments, and to respond faster to my readers, the moment any of your post a comment, I get an email notification. As you know, recently I moved all my email affairs to Google’s mail service GMail. Now, Google uses its own AdSense service to show ads to people while they are reading their emails. The content of the email is used to determine which related ads should be shown.

GMail adsense When I openned a notification email with Jon’s comment I was shown four ads on the right. All four ad links were about notebooks. Two links were generic, but two others featured a brand. And although the brand in the content of the email was Dell, both branded ads were about IBM.

Now, you might think that this is just a coinsidence. But for two links out of four? I don’t think so. What is more probable is that Google undestood that Dell brand was used in connection with terrorism and tried to substitute that for IBM. Probably that was an attempt to sell non-explosive items to terrorists. Thanks Google, but no thanks.

NOTE (this note should have been written a very small font, but since noone will read so far down, I’ll leave it as it is): please, don’t take this entry seriously. I’m just messing with you.

Looking for a notebook

I’ve never particularly liked notebooks. They are clumsy, uncomfortable, hot, slow, weird, and hard to fix or upgrade. And expensive, of course.

But circumstances are changing now in such a way that I’ll need to have a notebook pretty soon. We can’t manage on a single computer nomore, and there is no place to put a second one. Plus I am way too often moving around.

I am not in a hurry yet, but I can’t delay the purchase for another six month. Tha gives me enough to time to study the options and compare the prices.

So far I haven’t done any research what-so-ever. And with this knowledge I am looking for the following:

  • IBM ThinkPad T41 notebook (I’ve heard lots of positive comments about this particular line of products, and it supports Linux pretty good too.)
  • Fast CPU is not an issue. Even 1 GHz will be enough.
  • RAM is good, so I’ll need more. 1 GByte is pretty close to perfect.
  • I don’t want an elephant in the bag, but I want something bigger than my mobile, so the ideal size of the screen is 15″.
  • Well-supported video card – NVidia MX-series or something similar.
  • CD/DVD/DVD-RW is a must.
  • USB is a must.
  • WiFi card, supported by Fedora Linux 4 or later is a must.
  • 10/100 (or maybe even 10/100/1000) Mbit Ethernet adapter is a must.
  • Soundcard with line-in (read: Skype) is a must.
  • Battery life is not essential – if it can live and work for 2-4 hours, then it’s good enough. Usually, I am pretty close to power lines.

That’s pretty much what I have thought of at this moment. Any suggestions, ideas, or pointers are very welcome.

P.S.: The system will be running Fedora Linux and Fedora Linux only. No dualboots to Windows or anything crazy like that.

P.P.S.: Notebook can even be second-hand, if in good condition.