[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Edlug Archive Mar 2004 ]

Re: [edlug] Big blue v Big poo

Not really a debate. The IBM guy gave a standard suit-oriented pitch on why Linux was a good thing for business. The MS guy gave a talk containing many half truths on why Linux wasn't nearly as good as people were saying it was.

However the MS guy was by far the better performer and is obviously one of their open source diplomats. He fielded most of the questions and did so very well. As with all diplomats he is very accomplished at not telling the whole story. Two of his pieces of evidence that I can recall through the post-debate booze-induced haze were,

"we commission these reports but don't get to influence how they're written - these consultants have their reputation to think of", and 

"Mitre summaries show that Linux has more reported vulnerabilities than windows and that Linux's is going up while Windows' is going down"

The first, while strictly true is misleading because the report's commissioner gets to lay down the criteria by which comparisons will be made so can skew things in their own favour.

The second misrepresents what cve.mitre.org is about. It is a record of publicly known vulnerabilities and if anything means two things. That more people are looking for vulnerabilities in Linux, reporting it and ensuring it gets fixed. MS on the other hand keep shtum about any vulnerabilities they know about so their count of 'known vulnerabilities' is lower. A classic example of open vs closed thinking.

And no, I didn't think of either of these until much too late.

Notably the MS guy didn't really address the debate's topic 'Is Open source a viable business alternative' and only talked about linux.

Overall a sterile affair, far too polite but a good networking event helped by copious free hooch.

-----Original Message-----
From: Leo Friel <leo.friel@xxx.xxx.xxx>
To: edlug@xxx.xxx.xxx
Date: Fri, 26 Mar 2004 19:07:38 +0000
Subject: [edlug] Big blue v Big poo

Anyone got any tales from last nights Open Source debate (or links to  a blog 
even)? (Would love to have been there but new baby and all that...)

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