[Fsf-friends] Queries about FLOSS...

Imran William Smith imran@imran.info
Wed Mar 31 01:58:42 IST 2004

On Thu, 4 Dec 2003, mayur m wrote:

> <>
> 1) There are so many versions of linux so how do the
> common people come to know what is best for them.

Try www.distrowatch.com

>>2)in linux community is there someone controls the
>>development and expansion of the open source free
>>fragmentation of linux like it happened in the past
>>with Unix.

The 'Linux Standards Base' by www.freestandards.org
aims to do that.

>>Secondly why is there no democratic body at the core
>>which oversees development of software in open source

Generally open source software is a meritocracy -
you get more votes or more influence on one particular
project by contributing more/better to the project.
It seems fair to me that Linus Torvalds has
much more influence in the future direction of Linux
than I have.

>>3)The companies supporting free software&open source
>>are supporting with what motives is quite
>>questionable. .Is it to bring down a monopoly or make
>>their own 
Theoretically, you cannot have a monopoly with open
source since the source code will always be available
to stop this.  IBM and Novell know that a portion
of a large pie is better than most of a tiny crumb.  So
they are both working aggresively to increase the size
of the pie (open source).

>>4)After the SCO case I think developers who develop
>>open source software and especially linux must come
>>together ,sit and decide that further such an event
>>does not happen.(it may not affect linux and open
>>source community but it does drive out companies who
>>are ready to embrace linux by bringing suspicion in
>>their minds.)
An increased awareness of copyright law, patent law,
fair use etc. is necessary for all software developers,
both open source and proprietary.  Hopefully this
will be a positive outcome of SCO.

>>5) Why is everyone trying to make a new package

Diversity vs duplication of effort - you could argue
both ways.  A Linux distribution is unlike a traditional
engineering project - it's easy to create a new one,
a few days' work, and a huge financial burden to keep
it alive.  So, many people start distros then they
slowly die unless they can reach a critical mass.

>>Yours faithfully;
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Imran William Smith

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