FOSS Week in Review
Death and taxes: I avoided the first and completed the second. Metric tons of thanks to Christine Hall for standing in for me while I was recovering from what seemed for awhile there to be a terminal case of the flu as well as an appointment to do paperwork for our friendly Internal Revenue Service.
The best news of the week, of course, is that we’re everywhere. Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols wrote a story in ZDNet yesterday reporting on the results of the ninth annual Future of Open Source Survey. There’s an upside and a downside, as Steven reports: Enterprise is adopting open source like crazy, but they’re not managing it worth a darn.
Such language, Steven!
On the latter, Vaughan-Nichols reports that “[b]efore we get too excited about proclaiming OSS has won and the wicked witch of proprietary software is dead, we must take into account that companies still lack OSS formal management policies.” Over half of those who replied said that their company has no formal policy or procedure for open-source use, and just over a quarter — 27 percent — have a formal policy for employee contributions to OSS projects.
That part of the proverbial equation will definitely have to be fixed, but overall it’s excellent news and something to build on.
Linux-Friendly Dell, take two: Yep, we’ve heard this song before, and now here’s an encore. An Engadget article this week announces that Dell is offering its XPS 13 laptop with Ubuntu, in a myriad of configurations from which to choose.
I hate to be the look-a-gift-horse-in-the-mouth guy — to be honest, I hate raining on parades, even Ubuntu’s — but this news is not as great as it appears. For starters, buying one will set you back anywhere from $949 to $1,849.
But here’s the real sticking point: Ordering it from the Dell site will cost you ten to thirteen days of your life waiting for it to be delivered.
Seriously, Dell? Would it absolutely, positively kill you to provide a bunch of Ubuntu-laden XPS 13s to a huge vendor like Best Buy, since rather than wait up to nearly two weeks for one, folks might just buy a Windows laptop at their local big box, get an Ubuntu disk, and do the deed?
A better solution, and I never tire of saying this, is to buy from hardware makers building specifically for Linux, like ZaReason or System76. Yes, you pay more and I know some of you can’t (it’s a stretch for me, frankly), but you’re getting good quality and manufacturing that is aimed at a FOSS market. And the sale of the hardware is not being tallied in the Windows column.
Kernel 4.0 in Fedora 22 Alpha: Quoting Fedora Magazine: “Early this week, Linus released version 4.0 of the Linux Kernel. Now, this updated version of the Linux Kernel is available in the official Fedora repositories for users running the alpha release of Fedora 22.
“To get the updated version of the kernel on your Fedora 22 machine, either update the system via the Software application (in Fedora Workstation), or using dnf update on the command line.”
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how it’s done.
See you next week.