Here are some interesting tidbits of open source news/updates from the past week or so:
- Red Hat Digital Keys Violated by Intruder - Security. Vulnerabilities in operating systems are nothing new. But let's be real for a second, when it occurs at an open source vendor like Red Hat the underlying assumption is that open = vulnerable. Still, this incident does bring into question the issue of certification as it relates to distribution of open source. I mean, if I download Fedora from Mirror #5 located in Country X, how sure am I that Red Hat, the assumed originator of the binary/source code in question, vouches for the contents of that package at that particular time?
- Does the market really want open options for cloud computing? I tend towards the perspective that open standards/open source sounds like it has more overlap with cloud computing than it actually does, at the current moment. I'm not particularly sure at this stage in the life of cloud computing that there is enough differentiation between a proprietary and open source cloud to drive preference for either. In essence, I think the market is still sorting out exactly what the cloud is about.
- Can Dell capture emerging markets with simplified PCs? I've got to wonder what cultural barriers might play a bigger role in determining if Dell can capture emerging markets. After all, price is only one determinant of success in capturing emerging Asian, African and Latin American nations. The article mentions computing needs, which I think is an apt term on account of the inherent diversity across the different nations in those regions. If the millions of "consumers" who compose these places are simply lumped into the emerging nations category from a strategy perspective, I feel like the results will suffer.
- Where will JavaFX lead? The question shouldn't be does Sun have a shot in the mobile arena but how will it fit into the picture. How a mobile app space, one that has yet to mature to the point where bona-fide structural characteristics are evident, does not have room for another player is beyond me. That being said, it's also not clear exactly what JavaFX will bring to the table as an Rich Internet Application (RIA) enabler. Granted, the alignment between Java and JavaFX is a great for Java developers who have been left out of the RIA picture while Adobe, Microsoft and AJAX have provided their developers with capable tool sets. However, the JavaFX development kit simply needs to get out there and assert itself as an option before it's place is clear.
- What is Spacewalk? A summary of what the open source (GPLv2) Linux systems management solution allows you to do might go as follows:
- Perform inventory on systems (hardware and software information)
- Install and update software
- Collect and distribute custom software packages into manageable groups
- Provision (kickstart) systems
- Manage and deploy configuration files
- Monitor systems
- Provision and start/stop/configure virtual guests
- Distribute content across multiple geographical sites.
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