December 31, 2001

Weekly news wrap-up: Looking ahead to Linux in 2002 and 2003

Author: JT Smith

- By Grant Gross -

It's that time of year when pundits like to look back and forward. Indeed, NewsForge/Linux.com will have a news roundup of 2001 this week. Looking forward this week were a couple of writers who boldly offered predictions on Linux.

Our friend Joe Barr offered 10 Linux predictions for 2002. Some are serious, some less so. Among his predictions: The Linux business sector will emerge from slump, and "at least one global megacorp will announce a complete migration away from all Microsoft Windows platforms to an interoperable mix of Unix, Mac and Linux platforms." He also sees a bigger acceptance of Linux on desktops in the coming year.

NewsForge's Robin "Roblimo" Miller gazed into his crystal ball a little further, predicting what will happen to Linux in 2003, when Microsoft will stop full support of Windows 98 and NT. He predicts many people running old versions of Windows will move to Linux instead of upgrading their hardware to run Windows XP.

Santa switches to Linux, Open Source

OK, so a lot of you don't believe in Santa Claus anymore. But NewsForge freelancer Daniel P. Dern swears he visits with the old guy once a year, and this year, Santa says he's switched to Linux and other Open Source tools. Hey, could I make this up?

New releases

While the holiday week made for a slow news week, there was a whole lot of Open Source software releasing going on. Perhaps the developers used time off from their day jobs to crank out code on their pet projects. Among the new releases this week:

Devils-Linux 0.5 beta 5 3.

PHP 4.1.1.

Window Maker 0.80.

ROCK Linux 1.5.12 (Development).

KDE 2.2.2 for Solaris and FreeBSD.

Newly reviewed

Tech-Junkie.com reviews Red Hat 7.2 and Mandrake 8.1 on the desktop, taking readers from set-up to using the Linux distributions. From the conclusion: "With the equivalent technologies deployed, Red Hat's focus appear to be for professionals and Mandrake's focus on the average desktop user. As a result expect more wizards and fancy front ends from Mandrake's offering. This is not necessary [sic] bad, since shortcuts can save a lot of time even for experienced users. All Linux users should be happy, as long as quality distributions in the future don't treat and second-guess users through some drug-induced, Disney-eue [does he mean Disney-esque?] experience."

New at NewsForge and Linux.com

Other stories that NewsForge and Linux.com reported first this week:

Tina Gasperson caused quite a stir with her review of Linuxsucks.com. Her opinion: It needs a lot of work to be credible.

Columnist Jack Bryar suggests where Open Source fans can focus their charitable contributions. Among his suggestions: The Free Software Foundation, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Peace Corps.

Stock news

The holiday-shortened stock week was a good one for the tech-heavy Nasdaq and for many Open-Source related Linux stocks in general. The Nasdaq ended last week at 1,987.26, up from 1,945.83 Dec. 14, and some analysts are predicting continued increases based on news last week that the manufacturing sector seems to be turning around and consumer confidence is up.

As expected, it was a slow news week for the companies on our Open Source stock list.
Of the 11 Open Source-related stocks on our list, eight were up this week, although most posted modest gains. Only Hewlett-Packard and MandrakeSoft posted losses for the week, while Wind River Systems ended the week at 18.05 for the third week in a row.

Here's how Open Source and related stocks ended this past week:

Company Name Symbol 12/21 Close 12/28 Close
Apple AAPL 21.00 22.43
Borland Software Int'l BORL 15.39 15.85
Caldera International CALD 0.77 0.89
Hewlett-Packard HWP 21.00 20.82
IBM IBM 122.00 122.90
MandrakeSoft 4477.PA e4.90 e4.69
Red Hat RHAT 6.95 7.02
Sun Microsystems SUNW 11.74 12.59
TiVo TIVO 5.47 6.30
VA Software LNUX 2.48 2.49
Wind River Systems WIND 18.05 18.05
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