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Will Oracle Turn MySQL Into ‘Crippleware?’

Since Oracle obtained MySQL in the Sun takeover, many FOSS folks have been wary of Oracle’s plans for the open source database, a wariness that wasn’t eased by Oracle’s handling of the OpenOffice/LibreOffice split. When a couple of weeks ago we learned that Oracle has added three commercial extensions to MySQL, many figured that was the beginning of the end of MySQL as a free and open project.

According to The Register, the commercial extensions offer “…thread pool scalability, a pluggable API for PAM and Windows authentication, and additions to Oracle VM and Windows Server failover clustering support within MySQL Enterprise.”

From the moment this story was published, Oracle’s been working to spin this as “good for FOSS.” The Register article mentioned above quotes Giuseppe Maxia, former MySQL community team member, who predicts the negative response from the FOSS community, which he then pooh-poohed:

HP Board Misses One Shot Opportunity

HP’s Board of Directors could’ve solved a lot of their problems with the single action of replacing failed CEO Léo Apotheker with a competent executive capable of managing a diversified (some would say bloated) giant like HP. The CEO job would not be a position to fill with haste, which the board seems to have done.

HP Welcome Sign outside corporate headquarters.HP Welcome Sign outside corporate headquarters.Sure, Meg Whitman is something of a minor CEO rock star insofar as her name has a brand recognition. That brand is connected to her performance leading eBay to über success and to a failed bid to become California’s governor. As has been pointed-out countless times since Thursday, when when she was hired as HP’s latest CEO, however, eBay is not a technology company but is an auction house that happens to reside in cyberspace. As for her venture into West Coast politics – does blowing $144 million of her own money (and an additional $34 million of other people’s money) in a failed election bid instill confidence in her ability to make sound decisions?

Phone 7 FUD, Windows 8 Lockout, Samsung Takes Off Gloves

Friday FOSS Week in Review

This week’s biggest story in FOSS was the quick changing of the guard over at HP. Although HP isn’t really a FOSS company, they do of course sell Linux servers and were recently considered to be on the verge of becoming a major FOSS player with their webOS. There’s no need to cover any of that here, however, as I posted my viewpoints on this fiasco last night.

DigiNotar Put out of Business by Hackers

You know, when you’re a security firm it pays to have your security in place. I mean, it doesn’t look even a little good when you’re hacked, especially when your business is telling other people how not to get hacked. This is a truth that became much more self evident early this week when Dutch security firm DigiNotar announced they were going into voluntary bankrupcy and putting themselves out of business as the end result of a hacking incident that began last July. It seems that attackers gained access to the firm’s internal systems and issued a slew of fake certificates that allowed the hacker/crackers to impersonate web firms like Google, Facebook, Twitter and Skype. Evidently, the certificates were used to gain access to over 30,000 Google email accounts.

No Brass Ring on HP’s CEO Carousel

Since September 18th I’ve been saying that Hewlett-Packard needed to get rid of Léo Apotheker sooner rather than later. Well, the deed’s been done and Apotheker’s been shown the door. The trouble is, HP’s board doesn’t seem to have learned their lesson. They’re replacing him with former eBay CEO and would be California governor Meg Whitman, who might even be less qualified than Apotheker to run the ailing tech giant. The announcement of the switch came early this evening, pretty much timed to coincide with the closing of the stock market.

Apotheker’s Troubled Tenure

Léo Apotheker
It wasn’t obvious that Léo Apotheker was a good choice to replace Mark Hurd in the catbird seat at HP last September when it happened, and it has never been obvious since. In fact, it’s never even been obvious that Mr. Hurd’s resignation should’ve been forced to begin with, as the cloud over his head, a charge of sexual harassment, was evidently short on substance. HP’s board, evidently after blood, ignored the fact the he’d put the company on a sound financial footing and had charted a reasonable course for the company to follow, a course that left room for expansion into other areas.

None of this mattered, according to James B.Steward writing in The New York Times, for the bigwigs at HP thought the company to big to fail:

Top 10 Runlevels for Windows 8

Ah! Thursday! Who can we mess with using the half baked humor of our top 10 list this week?

You heard the news, we’re sure, that Ballmer & Company unveiled a preview of Windows 8 this week. We FOSS types couldn’t help but notice that the Microsofties seem to be copying more than a few Linux ideas with their new release, so we sent our crackpot investigative reporter Ms. Dos (well, she’s a crackpot, we know that much for sure) to nose around Redmond to see if she could find any unknown ways that the upcoming Windows operating system mimics the penguin.

Lo and behold! We discovered that Microsoft is secretly including Unix-like runlevels into their new OS. Some of these runlevels will be available to the user (although they won’t be called “runlevels”) and others will only be able to be activated by MS through the Windows Update feature, without user control. Doesn’t sound good, does it? Things from Redmond seldom do.

So, here it is, our list of the top 10 runlevels for Windows 8….

Happy Belated Birthday, Mageia

I absolutely have to stop for a moment to wish a big happy birthday to the folks at Mageia.

A year ago, when I wrote about a group of Mandriva former employees and contributors who’d decided to create a fork called Mageia, I had no idea whatsoever whether the project would survive to actually release a product. Well, a year has come and gone and Mageia not only released Mageia 1 in June, it’s now a distro with a year’s worth of organization under it’s belt. That may not sound like a lot, but to my mind it’s quite an accomplishment.

Tech Firms Facing the Abyss

There seems to be quite a few tech companies in trouble these days. In fact, in an article published yesterday on 24/7 Wall Street, tech firms represent six out of the eight major companies listed as being in troubled financial waters. There aren’t any surprises here for anyone who’s been paying attention, but a year or so ago most of us wouldn’t have suspected that some of these companies would even be capable of falling on hard times.

Topping this list is Best Buy. Although we’ve known for some time that the company is ailing, this is still something of a surprise given the recent history of consumer electronics retailing. After all, it was only a couple of years ago that Best Buy’s main competitor, Circuit City, floated to the surface face down, killed by intense competition from…you guessed it, Best Buy. For the latest quarter, the chain’s net income dropped $77 million from the same quarter last year, from $254 million to $177 million.

More Linux Site Hacks, ReactOS Ready to Go, Obama Signs ‘America Invents Act’

Friday FOSS Week in Review

In many ways, FOSS news this week is like a soap opera with lots of stories being continuations from last week’s items. However, there is some new stuff to report. If you’re like me, all FOSS news is interesting….

Bartz Resigns from Yahoo Board

After being fired by telephone last Tuesday, Yahoo’s former CEO Carol Bartz resigned from the Internet company’s board on Friday. According to a Reuters report posted on Yahoo, the resignation was made public on Sunday and first reported by The Wall Street Journal:

Top 10 Career Choices for Yahoo’s Ex-CEO Carol Bartz

Oops… You forgot it was Thursday, didn’t you? Too late, you’re here now. Time to subject yourself to another of our inane top ten lists.

Of course we couldn’t let the firing of Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz slide by without getting the top ten treatment. After all, they fired her on the telephone, then she went and showed us that she knows some words that are, er, not very polite. On top of that, she’s been willing to ignore a non-disparagement clause in her contract, possibly forfeiting over $14 million in money owed to her by Yahoo. Perhaps you can see how we might find this to be fodder for humor, no?

So, here it is, our list of the top 10 career choices for Yahoo’s ex-CEO Carol Bartz….

  1. Become CEO of Since they’ve never been very successful, they won’t be expecting much.
  2. Put her in charge of HP’s consumer PC division. They want to get rid of it anyway – maybe this will help.
  3. Become a professional drunken sailor. She’s got the vocabulary down.
  4. Do what every IT CEO does after being proved incompetent – run for public office.
  5. Two words: Roller derby.

Intel Still MeeGos, Apple Loses Again, Yahoo Presents ‘The Charlie Sheen Show’

Friday FOSS Week in Review

What a wacky week for tech news this has been! I couldn’t make much of this stuff up if I tried – and if I did, you wouldn’t believe it. That’s one of the nice things about the Internet, I can provide you with links so you can see for yourself that these stories really happened…

Apple Loses Another iPhone Prototype in Bar

Less than a year and a half after an Apple employee lost a top secret prototype of an iPhone 4 in a bar, it’s happened again. This time the prototype of an iPhone 5 was lost at Cava 22, a bar located in San Francisco’s mission district. Although every tech site on the planet is covering this story, I think it’s only fitting to turn to Gizmodo for a quote, given their connection with the first lost prototype:

Top 10 Things To Do With an iPhone Prototype Found Abandoned in a Bar

It’s Thursday, and around these parts that means it’s time for the Top 10 list, which means nobody nor nothing is safe.

This week it was deja vu all over again (to steal somebody else’s line) over in Cupertino town, where the Zapple… (oops, that’s a cheap wine they might not even make anymore) …the Apple folks have once again managed to misplace (that means “lose” or “leave behind”) a valuable prototype of an unreleased iPhone at a bar. Hmmm… come to think of it, maybe they are the Zapple folks after all.

Just in case you’ve been living in a cave on some remote island somewhere, the exact same thing happened a year ago in an incident that’s just now getting sorted-out in court. You tell us, doesn’t it seem that a company trying to keep its secrets secret would learn not to take those secrets into a bar? But, then again, we’re poor and they’re rich. We do understand that rich yuppies act much differently than folks like you and I.

Anyway, that got us thinking about the possible things a person might do upon finding an iPhone prototype abandoned in a bar. We wanted this to be realistic, so to put ourselves in the proper frame of mind to fully understand the mindset of your typical bar patron, we opened up a bottle of Wild Crow and then let our imaginations run away with us.

So, here it is, our list of the top 10 things to do with an iPhone prototype found in a bar….

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  1. Do the right thing and return it to Apple. Then you get mad when they don’t offer you a reward and start a blog ( or something) and spend the rest of your life writing tirades against Apple.
  2. You call Gizmodo and try to sell it to them. They say no-way-Jose, been-there-done-that, we-can’t-afford-the-legal-fees, or words to that effect.
  3. After slipping it in your pocket, you take it back to your apartment. About 4 AM you’re awakened by the sound of fifteen or twenty storm troopers from the SFPD, accompanied by Steve Jobs, breaking into your apartment. After they’ve recovered their device, Jobs will erase your memory so you can’t tell anyone about the new features incorporated into the new iPhone. They’ve got a app for that.
  4. You steal it, but give it to some other bar patron after you discover it won’t play Flash videos.
  5. Although you decide to keep it and use it as your new smart phone, you discover after playing with it for about at hour that it’s nowhere near as capable as your Droid Bionic. You leave it behind at another bar.
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