Sunday, November 05, 2006

at least M+N are trying to move forward

David Sugar in his FreeSoftwareMagazine article, From freedom to slavery; a week of two distros, issues a rallying cry, bemoaning the Novell+Microsoft deal. His rhetoric is strong and his positions are compelling. My first inclination is to uninstall my most recent SUSE instance and wave my GPL/FOSS flag high.

Yet I am left wavering... first, wishing to acknowledge that Novell's SUSE is a great distro. One of the few that, as a tool, has 'met my hand''. ("If the tool does not meet the hand do not pick it up.") SLED10 is well appointed and comfortable. The comfort is an indication that thought and preparation went into the UI. Right from the 'box' SUSE is both accessible and visually appealing. Form without function is the downfall of many distros - the Chameleon's selection of Gnome based applications provides a well integrated suite of software tools. (I once heard a Novell rep refer to the lizard as a gecko - I don't think so!)

More important than my personal tastes in Linux distributions is a base, fundamental question; Where will the reconciliation start? To this end I applaud both Novell and Microsoft in their willingness to face the reality of our current situation and hammer out a working arrangement. Only the hind sight of history will validate or vilify this agreement but... at least M+N are trying to move forward.

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