August 11, 2002

Weekly news wrap-up: Ripping up UCITA, gearing up for LinuxWorld

-By Grant Gross -

The National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, that group of appointed political types who recommend laws to state legislatures, have recommended a series of changes to the controversial UCITA model legislation, including a couple designed to make the law more fair to Open Source software.
But critics of UCITA weren't exactly celebrating this week. A lawyer working with Red Hat says the changes don't go far enough, that UCITA still isn't going to be an Open Source programmer's favorite law. Red Hat continues to call for states to reject the legislation.

LinuxWorld on the way

And what that means is a bunch of press releases from companies talking how they are embracing Linux. But Robin "Roblimo" Miller looks beyond the press releases and talks to Sun Microsystems insiders, who say that we shouldn't expect a Sun Linux distribution. Instead, look for Sun to put a rebranded Red Hat Linux on some of its server products.

Robin also delivered an interesting story about the reasons behind RealNetworks' move to Open Source. It's mainly about setting a standard for the delivery of wireless multimedia and not letting Microsoft define that standard.

Meanwhile, Microsoft is still planning to be at LinuxWorld, but Linux and Main says to not expect any big surprises.

Desktop debate, Part 1,002,897?

There were a couple of Linux desktop-related articles making the rounds this week. Ximian's Miguel de Icaza says he remains optimistic about the growth of Linux on home computers. Another column argues that Linux companies' focus on the server lately is a losing proposition.

Odds 'n' ends

C|Net tracks down the people at Linuxcare, which has shifted its focus from services to selling software.

Harmony Central has an interesting article on Final Scratch, an Open Source program that allows DJs to mix MP3s using standard turntables.

Success story of the week

A new airline, appropriately named Penguin Airlines, is using Linux from the ground up, including its desktops and reservations systems. The air taxi service is working with the Lycoris distribution for its computing needs.

Newly released

Qt# 0.4 was released this week.

Newly reviewed says OpenOffice could challenge Microsoft's grip on the office suite market.

TuxReports offers several screen shots of the Mandrake 9.0 beta release.

New at NewsForge/

Among the other stories we reported first this week:

Tina Gasperson explains how Linux came through for a New York systems integrator and reseller after the September 11 terrorist attacks there.

Open Source advocate Bruce Perens calls the new Microsoft Software Choice campaign a "clever fraud."

Stock news

Wow! The Nasdaq closed up for the week, only the second time in the last couple of months. The tech-heavy stock index moved from 1.247.92 August 2 to 1,306.12 this last Friday. Is the economy starting to turn around?

Out list of 11 Open Source-related companies followed that upward trend, with only three down for the week, and the three down a combined .09. Several others were up considerably.

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

Company Name Symbol 8/2 Close 8/9 Close
Apple AAPL 14.45 15.00
Borland Software Int'l BORL 8.58 9.29
Caldera International CALD 1.15 1.13
Hewlett-Packard HPQ 12.80 13.41
IBM IBM 67.88 71.83
MandrakeSoft 4477.PA e2.20 e2.15
Red Hat RHAT 4.40 4.94
Sun Microsystems SUNW 3.66 4.17
TiVo TIVO 2.67 3.35
VA Software LNUX .66 .75
Wind River Systems WIND 4.60 4.58
Click Here!