Originally Published: Monday, 7 February 2000 Author: Ed Matthews
Published to: corp_features/General Page: 1/1 - [Printable]

Linux Everywhere?

WinCE is a flop and the web ensures that more and more people know that Windows New Technology isn't, really, even in the year 2000. Now, Linux is entering all the same markets as Windows: servers, desktops, and hand-helds. Will Linux proponents also find themselves the victim of blurred focus, out of touch with too many markets? I don't think so, and here's why.

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I read Bob Lewis' recent opinion piece at InfoWorld that stated Microsoft's strategy of Windows everywhere would eventually not let them win anywhere. WinCE is a flop and the Web ensures that more and more people know that Windows New Technology isn't, really, even in the year 2000.

Now, Linux is entering all the same markets as Windows: servers, desktops, and hand-helds. Will Linux proponents also find themselves the victim of blurred focus, out of touch with too many markets?

I don't think so, and here's why.

Linux adds value to hardware, without the expense

Today, what kind of server would your small to medium sized business like? Got an extra machine, but not a thousand bucks for a software license? Sounds like you want Linux. Hey, not an upgrade fee or limit on the number of concurrent users in sight.

Is Fortune 500 part of your corporate identity? Get started with the well-mannered Linux OS today for file, print, fax, or web services, then later this year you'll be ready to use it when your big name vendors like Oracle, IBM, and SAP come calling. They know what Linux learned in kindergarten, to play well with others.

Want to put your own corporate logo on the corporate desktop or otherwise customize startup? If you're a Value Added Reseller (VAR), how about selling desktop space on the machines you preload with the Linux OS for various local ISPs? No one will tell you can't. No threat of increased OS licensing fees for you!

Got an idea for a small device with a small price? What's going to get you higher margin for each unit sold, licensing fees for the OS, or a free OS that works better?

Linux adds value to software applications, with less risk

You can write a program knowing you're on an even platform with others. There are no hidden features you didn't know about, that the OS maker did when writing his applications. You don't have to worry about the OS owner becoming your biggest competitor when your great new idea becomes public.

Create freely. Sleep better at night.

Hardware and software companies can innovate with Linux to serve their markets

This means better products for you and me. With DOS and then Windows, we've had 15 years of the same old PCs, apps, and operating systems.

Linux gives the groups that are targeting new markets the power to innovate with the operating system instead of relying on the OS manufacturer. This puts the user interface design one step closer to its customer.

Also, innovation comes from letting disparately thinking groups try new things. This is why Linux will successfully integrate into an endless range of devices where any other proprietary software will fail.

All of these different kinds of groups working on their different projects will find more new ways for software and hardware to work well together than all the coders in the various proprietary OS campuses.

Finally, each hardware group can focus on its own needs for its markets. Linux's modular structure allows it to be very portable, customizable, and still compatible with other devices.

Linux is a small program that was always built for networking, Windows is an enormous program built on a single-user heritage

In an age where connectivity and sharing are mandatory, you've got a free OS with decades of networking experience behind it and a terribly expensive one built on a creaky isolationist foundation. Which one is the 'Net OS across devices small and large?

It's got a future, no matter what the future holds

Use it risk-free. The "company" won't ever go out of business. Nor will it decide to compete with you after your great idea reaches the market. You won't pay outrageous license or upgrade fees for your servers or your desktops or your hand-helds.

The programming skills required to build on it are widely available. When you want a new feature to support your new consumer portable device, you can hire someone to write it.

It's the World's Operating System

Did I mention it's already a huge hit in Europe, India, and Asia? Did I mention it's free?

So. You're in business. What are you waiting for?





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