Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Is THIS The Golden Age of Linux?

Filed under
Linux

http://lobby4linux.com/modules/weblog/index.php?user_id=1
(article is under the page break)

Anything that evolves seems to have "spurts" during said evolution. The evolution of our own planet has a mystery of its own. A crucial gap remains between the time when nothing was alive and the arrival of the first living creature. Now, it is fully understood that man-controlled progress is not evolution in the true form, but for this topic. we're going to cheat and use it simply because it's convenient.

Generally, when we think in terms of evolution, we tend to think of long spans of time. Linux is a relatively new phenomenon and was first announced to the world in 1991. One would think that tracing the "evolution" of Linux to be a simple thing. hu-uh...not even close to simple.

It would take weeks for me to accurately report the chronological development of Linux. The tens of thousands of programmers and developers who have made Linux what it is today is a staggering thought in itself. Highlighting each one of these individual achievements just from a logistical standpoint alone is overwhelming. From the developers of vi to Open Office, the number of programs written for Linux is easily in the thousands.

The actual core or Linux Kernel is easy enough and the code of that original core is readily available to anyone who cares to research it. It is from that point on that things get a bit complicated. the question I pose is this. At this time in history, at this moment and keystoke, are we in The Golden Age of Linux? Is this our Renaissance? I want to take a few moments and present the arguement that yes, I believe it is...and why I think so.

I can do WHAT with it?

The point can be argued with great gusto, but many will agree that the Golden Age of Linux began with the development and release of the Live CD. I can think of no other technological achievements that have opened more doors for the New Linux User than the Live CD. While the majority of people believe that the folks who develop for Linux actually "invented" the Live CD, it was Mac who produced the very first Live CD as we know it. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LiveCD). I bet that bursts some bubbles. It shouldn't...Mac, as we all know, is a hardware-dependent OS and a Live CD for Mac accomodates no one but Mac users.

It was Klaus Knopper who gave the world the Live CD. (not just one group of users) There is little doubt that Mr. knopper will be recorded in history as one of the greatest inovators in software technology. Knoppix was the shot from Linux heard around the world.

On January 19th, 2003; Klaus Knopper fired that shot. Knoppix, widely regarded as the first stable, usable Live CD for Linux was released to the public. Word spread about this marvel at the speed of Internet. It was not long before the wonder of the GPL allowed an ever-growing list of improvements to be spun off and remastered. Today, The Linux Novice, the curious and the Microsoft-damned can explore, use and reap the benefits of a stable Linux system. This it seems is only the start.

Pocket Full of Linux

Thousands upon thousands of people slid their Live CD's into their pockets and took them to work, to school, and to every other place they could demonstrate and use their power. People who had never heard of Linux or those who thought it to be some obscure programming language were discovering that Linux could be the answer to their computing problem. Note I said problem and not problems, for the one problem in the eyes of millions of computer users is Microsoft.

While the majority of computer users hadn't a clue of their servitude, many did, and Linux gave them a way out. Of course, with the expansion of Linux came more interest in the development of Linux...and the commercialization as well. The development and proliferation of the Live CD would not have been possible without the GPL. Because the majority of Linux technology is open source, the spread and improvement of Linux is as certain as anything can be.

One development that has offered a massive improvement to Linux is klik. While the apt-get/dpkg/rpm software package management systems have vastly improved and simplified the installation of software in Linux, some still complain that there has to be an easier way. Personally, I think if it got any easier than Synaptic, it would present the perils that MS Windows faces with software installation. However, someone was listening and paying attention.

Klik is a software installation method that really does entail just one click. (maybe two if you import the system into your distro). Kanotix, OpenSuse and CPX-mini currently provide the klik software as part of their packaging but it has been made available to many distros for third party install. For details on klik, please see http://klik.atekon.de/.

With Linux gaining in popularity on a daily basis, it only stands to reason that we will gain new developers from those numbers. How can that be a bad thing? Within the past year we have seen projects such as Elive, SymphonyOS, Wolfix and SkyOS take root within the fertile soil of Linux. Individual projects such as KmyMoney and Appgen's Mybooks Pro (proprietary) have given Linux Users the tools to move completely to Linux.

These tools allow the Linux User to import their Quickbooks/Quicken data files to Linux, thus they are no longer dependent upon windows for one single application. With projects such as Xara planning to port their program to Linux, those who depended upon PhotoShop and Xara in Windows can now unshackle themselves as well from the MS yoke.

So is this our Golden Age? My crystal ball is foggy and I cannot see the future as clearly as I would like to. Obviously, I picked the Astro's in 6. If the pace of development for Linux and Linux applications continues at this clip, this is indeed an exciting time. Linux has finally become user-friendly enough for the least computer-adept among us. And I do have one stock tip that you can take safely to your broker. Tums, Rolaids and Maalox are all three good investments right now. I know everyone from mid-management on up at Microsoft will be needing them in great volume.

More in Tux Machines

Red Hat News

Raising Funds for GNU/Linux

  • $25k Linux Journalism Fund
    Linux Journal's new parent, Private Internet Access, has established a $25k fund to jump-start the next generation of Linux journalism—and to spend it here, where Linux journalism started in 1994. This isn't a contest, and there are no rules other than the ones that worked for journalism before it starting drowning in a sea of "content".
  • Nearly six years after the Kickstarter, Stainless Games claim Carmageddon is still coming to Linux
    Another year has passed and it's now nearing six years since the Carmageddon: Reincarnation Kickstarter that was supposed to have a Linux version. The developer said it is still coming, apparently.

Linux Foundation Events: India Digital Open Summit 2018, Open Source Networking Day, Open Source Leadership Summit

GPL Violations: Grsecurity Carries on Bullying Bruce Perens, Israel Complies with AGPL, Xiaomi Violates GPL

  • Linux's Grsecurity dev team takes blog 'libel' fight to higher court
    Open Source Security, Inc., the maker of the Grsecurity Linux kernel patches, suffered a setback last month when San Francisco magistrate judge Laurel Beeler granted a motion by defendant Bruce Perens to dismiss the company's defamation claim, with the proviso that the tossed legal challenge could be amended. The code biz and its president Brad Spengler sued Perens over a blog post in June in which Perens said that using the firm's Grsecurity software could expose customers to a contributory infringement claim under the terms of the Linux kernel's GPLv2 license. Open Source Security contends that statement has damaged its business.
  • Israel’s Information and Communications Technology Authority Bows to Pressure to Comply with Affero GPL
    Under pressure from open source advocates, the Israeli Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Authority recently shared its first open source software, extensions made by the ICT Authority to the CKAN data portal platform to help make the platform usable in Hebrew. The CKAN software is an open source data portal platform used since 2016 by the ICT Authority to make Israeli government data open and available on its government database website. The CKAN software is licensed under the GNU AGPL Version 3 license, an “ultra-strong” open source license that requires users of modified versions of CKAN software to offer its source code, even in the absence of distribution, to users interacting with software over the Internet.
  • Xiaomi Violating GPL 2.0 License With Mi A1 Kernel Sources
    Xiaomi is in violation of the GPL 2.0 license of the Linux Kernel project by still not releasing the kernel sources for the Mi A1 Android One and has been publicly criticized on the matter by established Android developer Francisco Franco earlier this week. While the smartphone was released in September and the Chinese consumer electronics manufacturer’s official policy is to publicize kernel sources for its devices within three months of their market launch, the Android One edition of the Mi A1 remains undetailed in this regard. Mr. Franco — best known for his work on the Franco Kernel, one of the most popular custom OS cores in the Android ecosystem — had some harsh words for the company on Twitter, calling its laidback approach to publicizing the kernel sources for the Mi A1 “an embarrassment” for the open source community and the type of software it allows it to create its commercial devices in the first place.