back to article Countdown for IBM Project Zero

Over the years, Microsoft's taken a lot of flack for attempting to undermine open source. Despite giving away code snippets and working with vendors like Zend and MySQL, what really sticks in the mind are attempts to shore up its market share by spooking people on IP and by playing hardball. Microsoft's position contrasts …


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  1. tok

    IBM a giver - what a laugh!

    Compare say Sun and IBM. Sun is open sourcing faster than any other major corportation. IBM is just making noise.

    IBM raped its OS/2 community and refused to open source. Global Services will still support you though if you are rich enough.

    IBM won't open source the virtualization layer on their mainframes, so you can run Open Source Linux but at a huge cost on a propretry platfrom.

    IBM's VPs have more or less laughed at the idea of open sourcing Aix. They say they world only needs 1 Open Source OS.

    What about websphere - no, closed source

    What about DB2 (the real version) - no, closed source

    What about Director and the other System Management products

    IBM's code base dwarfs a compnay like Sun's and yet they have given so little but their marketing has claimed so much.

    So next time you see your IBM rep just ask "What are you going to open source today..." He'll tell you they just open source old tat thats 100 years past its sell by date then charge you by the word for his wisdom...

  2. Ian Michael Gumby

    @tok you're missing the point.

    IBM is not an open source company. Never was. Never will be. That is to say that while they'll give source code to the open source community, they are stiill a for profit company and will keep their good stuff "closed source" as you call it.

    But that's not to say that IBM isn't being hypocritical.

    Did you ever check out the licensing agreements under which IBM has given source code away?

    Can you say Apache? Have you even bothered to read the Apache License agreement? Essentially what IBM has been doing is trying to get free input from those who willingly contribute to the opensource community.

    They seed their code via Apache et al, you come up with a nifty enhancement and release it under apache. They then take it and use it as they see fit.

    IBM pulled out of Derby support. I wonder why... ;-)

  3. Kevin

    @tok- typical response from an open source fanatic

    I hear your argument, and you make good points, most of all that IBM doesn't contribute as much as they boast. But your point is tainted by your attitude towards it. You sounds like a typical open source zealot that confuses "contributing to open source" with "giving everything to open source". IBM donates, but you're upset because you don't think they donate enough. Well, Ian nailed it, they are a huge company with a lot of people working on things for them, and they would be out of business if they gave everything away. Just because they don't contribute everything they do to open source, does not mean they don't contribute.

    If you want to wag a finger, wag it at google. They heavily use open source, and do not contribute their coding to the community. Why? Because technically they don't distribute it, they just use it across the company. They are a prime of example of using and not contributing, "violating" the spirit of open source.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    From supposed hero to supposed zero

    IBM did do some advertising for linux - but to be fair it was crap, who is going to be swayed by some albino kid, looking like an extra from an odd horror movie.

    No, they should have used cute penguins, all CGI'd up and doing commando stuff for the IT world, with an IBM logo branded on their penguin tushes.

    If IBM wants to develop a tool that is commercial, using an open source platform then all power to them, that is what most developers do. If they make an alteration to Eclipse, PHP, or Ruby in the process, then yeah they should release the change back to the community, that is the idea But, their product does not have to be open source.

    To believe that all development should be open source and free is ridiculous, most devs want a customizable stable environment, a few tools and the ability to code for their living.

    And yes google, of 'do no evil fame' are perhaps the worse for not contributing back, they will have made some alterations to the linux kernel that they are sitting on.

    Opensource is not really for your day to day consumer, it is meant for the IT field. People have installed it for the avg users to increase wide spread adoption, that enables the commercial software development to gain a foothold. It is actually quite an interesting balancing act.

    This has happened because of mismanagement of unix, and MS window dominance. Mismanagement in not charging a smaller fee for Unix say $100 back in the days of SCO, and MS charging the correct amount for consumers. There were other debacles as well, such as not being able to fix your own printer driver.

    The vast majority of Open Source is not altruistic, but it is not selfish either. It is the evolution of shareware and freeware, and the understanding that corner stones of technology are better off being open. Most developers don't even give it too much thought, they just have a personal itch to scratch, and because they don't want to polish it they open source it.

    It does go deeper than this, but the idea that developers never wish to be paid for another line of code they write in their lives is a fallacy.

  5. amanfromMars Silver badge

    Work RESTful and Play?

    "REST detractors note the lack of tool support and the scarcity of truly RESTful applications deployed on the web of today....." ...

    Would that be because it is a SMART Phish looking for Predators/Next Generation Systems? It would certainly be something they could be looking for to act as a Host Developer/Hosting Proxy.

  6. mvrx

    IBM needs to native add cfml support this

    CFML is an excellent language, much easier to use than PHP.. While there are open source versions of ColdFusion servers, IBM should license the core from Adobe and include it standard with this new platform.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    At least IBM innovates

    One supposed benefit of open source is that you can "stand on the shoulders of giants" and so software as a whole can develop far more rapidly.

    A REST application server is the type of initiative I would hope that the open source community would come up with, and be able to work together on.

    So why does has it taken IBM to do this? I'm sure there will be open source copies of Project Zero in time, but where is the original innovation? (In fairness this type of functionality is being added to a number of popular frameworks)

    Yelling at IBM for delivering innovative, commercially desirable software for a fee seems a little, uh, silly. Personally while disappointed that IBM's Project Zero is not open source, their "beta program" was not misleading to me.

  8. Peter Mc Aulay

    So what?

    First of all, who cares about WebSphere?

    Secondly, if its development is going to be "community driven": if you don't like the licence, don't contribute to it. It's not like IBM is /forcing/ anyone to work for them for free or anything.

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