Too long and partially off-topic digression

Added by Itchy Koroshiya over 3 years ago

Some thoughts about what has happened with OpenSolaris (preceded by a far too long digression):

http://koroshiyaitchy.wordpress.com/2010/08/22/open-source-and-a-kingdom-of-free-men/

If it is not obvious enough at this point, I have nothing to do with the Solaris community. I just guess that the Devil finds work for idle hands to do...


Replies (5)

RE: Too long and partially off-topic digression - Added by Jonathan Edwards over 3 years ago

the big problem with OSS at Sun is that not enough people understood it well enough, or it's business model, to understand how to leverage it and monetize it .. don't get me wrong - there was a passionate group attempting to promote it .. but it was small and I can remember far too many internal conferences where the topic came up and a lot of people (typically the older crowd [mid 40's to 60's]) decried the idea as idiotic (giving away our IP?? why?) and i hold that it was this prevalent attitude that helped to hinder a broader adoption .. too many people just wanted to persist in the 80's and 90's and not really move into the 21st century.

At one point there was an extremely long, pointless, and passionate internal email thread when Ian Murdock (newly on board) had proposed using the name opensolaris for Sun's distribution of the packaged opensource nevada bits. Much weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth decried the effort (and really soured Ian i think) - holding that the name was sacred and should not be used to describe any distribution - even Sun's distribution .. also much debate around ksh93 as a default shell (bash was evil), and /usr/gnu/bin as a default path (could never really turn the corner with non-Sun IP or accepting decent OSS code from the community to actually put it in /usr/bin) .. overall - it really was a bubble in there - it's not until you come out of that world and it's endless discussions of code genealogies that you encounter a much broader world that's already moved on

RE: Too long and partially off-topic digression - Added by Jeppe Toustrup over 3 years ago

I suggest that you read ahl's blog post on the history of Solaris in the open source world, in order to get an insiders glimpse of what reasons Sun had to do as they did: http://dtrace.org/blogs/ahl/2010/08/27/the-future-of-solaris/

RE: Too long and partially off-topic digression - Added by Jonathan Edwards over 3 years ago

Jeppe Toustrup wrote:

I suggest that you read ahl's blog post on the history of Solaris in the open source world, in order to get an insiders glimpse of what reasons Sun had to do as they did: http://dtrace.org/blogs/ahl/2010/08/27/the-future-of-solaris/

thanks - good read from Adam .. I see he's moved on as well .. and ah, Indiana - memories of the heated debates after Sun hired Ian - complete culture clash .. yes, Sun Engineering was always very proud of their "technologies" (almost a bit much at times) but always seemed a little weak on how and where to distribute (the enterprise-only focus lost footing when enterprise hardware became commodity) .. this tended to cultivate a large NIH syndrome, along with a "everything else is crap" approach to things that made it hard for engineering to embrace some of the s/w acquisitions .. don't get me wrong though - great examples, training materials, and Documentation teams ("we're the M in the RTFM") and some wonderful ideas and tools .. i'm not so sure that all of them were as wonderful as we all thought and with a fractured licensing model that made it impossible to give or take from the larger linux community

btw hilarious link for Mike Shapiro out on http://dtrace.org/blogs .. ah the age old problem of amassing a little bit of power turns some people a bit funny - but I've got to agree that he always did seem a bit reactionary when he lost some of his control

RE: Too long and partially off-topic digression - Added by A Hettinger over 3 years ago

Jonathan Edwards wrote:

the big problem with OSS at Sun is that not enough people understood it well enough, or it's business model, to understand how to leverage it and monetize it .. don't get me wrong - there was a passionate group attempting to promote it .. but it was small and I can remember far too many internal conferences where the topic came up and a lot of people (typically the older crowd [mid 40's to 60's]) decried the idea as idiotic (giving away our IP?? why?) and i hold that it was this prevalent attitude that helped to hinder a broader adoption .. too many people just wanted to persist in the 80's and 90's and not really move into the 21st century.

ahh yes, the 21st century. The standard reason given to randomly deviate from standards with no reason whatsoever.

At one point there was an extremely long, pointless, and passionate internal email thread when Ian Murdock (newly on board) had proposed using the name opensolaris for Sun's distribution of the packaged opensource nevada bits. Much weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth decried the effort (and really soured Ian i think) - holding that the name was sacred and should not be used to describe any distribution - even Sun's distribution ..

A large segment of the community outside of sun was pissed about that. A lot of us DIDN'T like the confusion introduced into every conversation by Ian usurping our already established verbage to validate his distro. As someone not in Sun who was involved in some of those exchanges let me say: Ian Murdock was being a dick.

also much debate around ksh93 as a default shell (bash was evil),

Using bash for "/bin/sh" is evil. It encourages script writers to write scripts that cannot be used in any POSIX compliant sh. I have a fear that using ksh93 for /bin/sh will do the same thing. I don't care what the default for a user account is, it's trivial enough to change, but I want all scripts to work against ANY POSIX and SUS compliant shell. At the vary least they should advertise if they don't (with a proper #! line).

and /usr/gnu/bin as a default path (could never really turn the corner with non-Sun IP or accepting decent OSS code from the community to actually put it in /usr/bin) ..

/usr/gnu/bin should not be the default path. Too many utilities in there do not meet SUS and/or POSIX. You can call me old fashion, but YES I do like my UNIX to actually be a UNIX (comply with SUS).

overall - it really was a bubble in there - it's not until you come out of that world and it's endless discussions of code genealogies that you encounter a much broader world that's already moved on

It has nothing to do with "code genealogies" and EVERYTHING to do with "standards compliance" and "reverse compatibility." I'm loath to ever use linux because of it's complete lack of standards (or atleast willingness to deviate from them at the drop of a hat, and I mean ANY hat).

A Hettinger

RE: Too long and partially off-topic digression - Added by mrmill mr over 2 years ago

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