The New York Times reports that IBM has publicly committed to Linux on the desktop and will be working to provide a server-based administration setup of Linux workstations for corporate users.
As the article also notes,
Linux advocates say that the full complement of Microsoft desktop software has far more features, and is far more costly, than most workers at many companies really need.
For a long time, Microsoft has been counting on extra features, as well as improved security, for enticing users to upgrade. Will businesses finally see that the newest, the latest, may not improve productivity, instead only adding cost to their bottom line?
Good news for Linux on the desktop. The New York Times reports that
Sam Docknevich of IBM's Global Services group plans to discuss how Linux's popularity now has spilled over into the desktop market, according to the agenda for the Desktop Linux Conference in Boston. Docknevich's speech is titled, "The Time is Now for Linux on the Desktop."
I wonder if this related to Novell's announcement to buy SuSE Linux? It would be a good marketing ploy for IBM to announce something as well and capitalize on the current prominence of Linux in the news, especially since IBM has also invested $50 million in Novell as a result of this deal. Will this presentation reveal some additional investment in Linux for the desktop?
I have not tried ithis flavor of Linux for myself; I'm just not the biggest fan of Michael Robertson's business model with Lindows. Nevertheless, credit is due to Robertson & company for this great idea. Lindows and Seagate will soon be selling hard drives with Lindows preintalled. Maybe we'll get really lucky and Maxtor or Hitachi/IBM will do a similar deal with Fedora.
For those that might wonder how well this is going to work, know that Linux is pretty good at autoconfiguration. Much better than Windows. About a year ago, I upgraded the server running this site from a PIII 700 to an AMD 1.33ghz. Linux didn't even hiccup at the reboot on the new motherboard. My experience with Windows is that switching to a different motherboard is generally not the best way to maintain a stable system.
Original link from Slashdot.
Slashdot guided me to this Economic Times article "IBM promotes Linux in new ad". The ad, to be aired initially during the opening NFL game and the US Open Men's Finals, will feature the catch phrase "Linux: The Future Is Open." What's significant is the strong metaphor of the young boy as Linux:
In the IBM commercial, a blond, blue-eyed boy sits mum as a stream of celebrities ply him with information on everything from plumbing to the mysteries of the universe. The more knowledge the boy absorbs, the more it benefits humankind, it says.
"Collecting data is only the first step toward wisdom, but sharing data is the first step toward community," Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr advises the boy in the ad, recalling the ethos of the programming community behind Linux.
AdAge has more details, as well as a link to the advertisement itself. Watch the video. This is a fantastic advertisement for the open source community because of the messages about community and sharing embodied in the ad; indeed, for all that see community and collaboration as the most effective means of knowledge production .
Gotta love that the media format for the version of the ad available above is Windows Media Player :)