The Win, Fail and Meh of Open Source in 2008
With 2008 coming to an end, heise online UK picks what was full of win, who was waiting for the failboat, and who just made us go meh. So in no particular order, here are the Wins, the Fails and the Mehs of Open Source from 2008.
Win - Ubuntu 8.04LTS - Canonical shipping a long term support version of Ubuntu was a real win for the FOSS operating system. It gave those users who need the assurance a version of Ubuntu to deploy that has support for longer than the normal 18 months. While there have been Linux distributions with similar offerings, they are usually associated with services or subscriptions. Ubuntu has brought that level of support to a free operating system. Ubuntu has also done more to popularise Linux in 2008 than possibly any other vendor, creating an enthusiastic, inclusive community, around a Linux distribution that sets out to be easy to work with for the general user, rather than just those with a corporate cheque book to hand.
Fail - SCO - A fail for SCO, a win for open source, as another year passed and SCO continued to excavate the hole they began digging when they tried to claim Unix as theirs and threatened Linux for patent violations. What's left is a company that doesn't even have friends with big cheque books any more.
Meh - Microsoft joining the Apache Foundation -