Prague in the Spring

It appears the Czechs are serious about GNU/Linux:

Prague is hot.

The whole country is doing quite well:

That’s consistent with reports that the Czech government uses FLOSS extensively:

Clearly, GNU/Linux works for them. It’s just silly that some commentators here cling to the idea that nothing can be done without that other OS. There is clear evidence to the contrary.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
This entry was posted in technology. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Prague in the Spring

  1. Clarence Moon says:

    The rest is just feature-bloat…The idea that people can have ideas if they are paid and cannot have ideas if they are not paid is preposterous

    I think that just shows a lack of experience with commercial software development on your part, Mr. Pogson. Consider that senior technical staff, namely developers who control what gets done, here, and at every other company that I have knowledge of that is in the serious commercial software business, are paid in the $150K to $200K salary levels for this “feature-bloat”.

    Successful commercial software is fantastically profitable and you can see that yourself from the SEC reports of major software companies. The thrill, I know, is in the doing and doing it for money is the same as doing it for fun if you are doing the same thing. You would have to be deranged to do it for nothing if you could do it for money just the same.

    Perhaps you should access the code from, say, LibreOffice and really study it to understand the overall structure and content. I think that you would find that it is a very intricate piece of C++ project code that you would not have the faintest glimmer of understanding of how it all fits together.

    There are good and cogent reasons why most companies who need office automation services in their business do not run out and try to save some money on MS Office purchases by switching to a FOSS alternative. They want to buy a long term solution that they can rely on to be there in the future due to a business-like profit motive, not due to the whim and fancy of some lunatic group out to destroy commercial software markets.

  2. kozmcrae says:

    @ldman wrote:

    “That’s because Libre office started a commercial software that was built and sold by (I believe) staroffice GMBH until it was purchased by Sun and then donated to open source.”

    Compare Open Office (“commercial” Oracle) to Libre Office (open source) and that will tell you all you need to know about open source vs commercial development. Open Office has stagnated compared to Libre Office. Libre Office has taken off like a rocket since it has been freed from its commercial entanglements.

    The world needs and wants an open source office suite that is developed by the people who actually use it. Now that it has it you will see its development take off. This is not a prediction but an observation of current events.

    It should be clear by now that the best way for software to be developed is by the people who actually use the software. Sharing in the development produces the highest quality. That also is not a prediction but an observation as in the case with Linux.

  3. oldman wrote, “the overall design conception that the community is living off of”.

    Office applications? I don’t think there’s anything original in there since the 1970s and simple text-editors. One opens a file, changes, displays and prints it. The rest is just feature-bloat. M$ nor anyone else has a patent on software applications. They have been around since the “stored-programme” concept of the 1950s.

    The idea that people can have ideas if they are paid and cannot have ideas if they are not paid is preposterous. Ask any child how that works.

  4. oldman says:

    “Oh, no. Not much of the original code remains. ”

    But the design does remain Pog, and it is the overall design conception that the community is living off of.

    Upgrading the plumbing in an existing structure is one thing. Designing and then building the structure from scratch is quote another.

  5. oldman wrote, “The reality is Most of the hard work of program design/architecture was done while OpenOffice was commercial. The community was presented with a fully developed fully working integrated product that they have only had to maintain and perform some internal “cleanup” on – a far easier task for a loosely coordinated amateur effort to manage that a full blown coordinated design for scratch.”

    Oh, no. Not much of the original code remains. There was no Java, for instance when StarOffice started back in 1984 when it was started. Also, a lot of work had to be done to strip non-FREE components. LibreOffice has also deviated a lot from the codebase in OpenOffice.org and then there are ports that StarOffice never saw, like AMD64. Software grows and evolves. There’s not much that’s static about it.

    The current source package for Libreoffice 3.4.5 is 345 MB as a tar.gz. The binary used to ship in OpenOffice.org 1 around 50MB.

    RedHat’s archives show http://ftp.redhat.com/redhat/linux/enterprise/3/en/os/i386/SRPMS/openoffice-1.0.2-8.src.rpm at 131MB

    RHEL 6 shows http://ftp.redhat.com/redhat/linux/enterprise/6Workstation/en/os/SRPMS/openoffice.org-3.2.1-19.6.el6_0.5.src.rpm at 214 MB, so a lot of work was done after it became FLOSS.

  6. oldman says:

    “Libre Office is a good example of another project that is not amateurish.”

    That’s because Libre office started a commercial software that was built and sold by (I believe) staroffice GMBH until it was purchased by Sun and then donated to open source.

    The reality is Most of the hard work of program design/architecture was done while OpenOffice was commercial. The community was presented with a fully developed fully working integrated product that they have only had to maintain and perform some internal “cleanup” on – a far easier task for a loosely coordinated amateur effort to manage that a full blown coordinated design for scratch.

    As far as its future is concerned, the real proof of that will be if/when the community attempts to expand beyond its current architecture. THEN you will see what the “community can or cant do…

  7. kozmcrae says:

    iLia wrote:

    “Actually, this statement is true only for Linux kernel, and maybe for some other hight-profile FLOSS projects, which are important for some big companies, but the overwhelming majority of FLOSS projects is still amateurish stuff.”

    Sorry, yes, that’s true. I was thinking of the Linux kernel but wrote “open source” instead. Yes, many FLOSS projects a amateurish. Many are dead too. But that doesn’t mean the same thing as it would if you were talking about proprietary projects. That’s where the comparison fails. Ninety nine percent of all open source projects could be absolute junk and that would still leave hundreds or more that would be successful. That’s not what’s wrong about open source, that’s what’s right about it. That’s how it works.

    Libre Office is a good example of another project that is not amateurish. It’s star is rising quickly and could soon replace Microsoft’s Office as the industry standard. I believe that will happen sooner rather than later.

  8. ilia wrote, “the overwhelming majority of FLOSS projects is still amateurish stuff.”

    That may be true of all kinds of software because amateurs can roll their own. The statement says nothing about the many projects that do deliver tremendous value to the world. I could just as well say, “The overwhelming majority of gardens are amateurish.” and the statement would have as much value.

    ilia also wrote, “I do not believe that in 2003 Linux was better than Window XP, almost no drivers, no software. I tried Linux for first time in ~2005 it took me two days to switch back to Windows XP.”

    That’s absurd. That’s about the time Munich decided to migrate to GNU/Linux. They would not have decided to do that if there were almost no drivers. I installed FLOSS and GNU/Linux on hundreds of PCs from 2000 to 2010 that were just laying around and there were very few problems with drivers. All the stuff on motherboards from HP, Dell, Acer, Lenovo, IBM and a few local Canadian companies all worked. I did find a few lose-modems, though and rarely a wireless thingy but there were tons of drivers working in Linux. The reason is that Linux targets chips and not devices so one driver for a chip from a manufacturer in China could drive all the products in many devices around the world. All the commonly encountered stuff certainly has a driver because almost everyone wants their stuff to be used with GNU/Linux PCs and servers.

  9. iLia says:

    Seventy percent of all open source code is submitted by company coders.

    Actually, this statement is true only for Linux kernel, and maybe for some other hight-profile FLOSS projects, which are important for some big companies, but the overwhelming majority of FLOSS projects is still amateurish stuff.

    Windows has no value “per se”, it is a huge amount of windows applications which make Windows useful. Not all of them perfect, but it seams to me that the quality of windows application is quite high, simply because people who write it are paid for their job.

    And with Linux you are never sure that the application you need exists or is mature enough to be useful.

    And the price? Nothing wrong with it. When someone does something useful for you he has the right to ask something in return. Capitalism is still more successful than socialism or natural economy.

    re-re-reboots

    How often you need to reboot Windows 7?

    And let me explain how my Huawei USB-modem works under Linux. Sometimes it looses connection and I have to open terminal and type:

    sudo killall modem-manager
    sudo killall NetworkManager

    then pull the modem out and plug it in again. Only after these manipulation I can establish internet connection. Not really friendly.

    This was about 2003.

    9 years ago, is it still relevant? And I do not believe that in 2003 Linux was better than Window XP, almost no drivers, no software. I tried Linux for first time in ~2005 it took me two days to switch back to Windows XP.

    And even now GNU/Linux is no better than Windows 7.

    Sad but true.

  10. kozmcrae says:

    You do know your history iLia. I retract my statement about you not being familiar with your country’s history in full. And yes, Stalin did more damage to his people than the Germans did.

    Just because coders love freedom does not mean they write amateur stuff. Seventy percent of all open source code is submitted by company coders. They love freedom but that doesn’t mean they are amateurs. You are confusing freedom with unprofessional. That would be a mistake.

    You are living in a world where both open source and proprietary software are fighting for dominance. You would not be so happy with your beloved Microsoft if it were the only source for your IT needs. The only reason the end user has any clout at all is because there are choices. You have a choice, whether you use it or not it still works for you. You’re welcome.

  11. iLia wrote, of M$’s fees: “To pay once in 5 years $100 for a good OS it is not that expensive.”

    If that were all that it amounted to, you would be right but there’s the cost of re-re-reboots, malware, incompatible file formats, moving goal-postsprotocols, etc. One buys a horse and wagon to haul stuff around and it’s crazy to buy the horse and wagon and let someone else lead the horse the way they want to go. That’s why Munich migrated, to lead their own horse their way. In the days when I migrated, people were having nearly one failure per day of that other OS. It’s reliability is better now but there’s still malware and Patch Tuesday and the price has not kept pace with Moore’s Law. M$ scarcely paid any attention to quality until a few years ago.

    Another big place for costs indirectly due to M$ is the need to buy a new PC with the OS. So, the price is not $100 but $500 so it’s $100 per year to keep M$’s “partners” employed. One can buy a usable tablet or smartphone for the cost of one round of upgrades for M$’s OS. Then there’s the office suite… M$ has a virtual monopoly on retail channels. The only reason they don’t double the price is that the price the consumer sees is so outrageously high already. We buy the hardware. We should not have to pay periodically to keep it running.

  12. iLia says:

    By the way, read this and this.

    Hitler is dead but his ideas thrive in the West and are implemented on the horrific scale.

  13. iLia says:

    I don’t care about Goebbels, Germans and Jews, 3 my great grandfathers died in this war and I think it was very, very stupid to continue fighting Germans and their allays after the soviets pushed them from Ukraine and Belarus, it was very stupid to sacrifice millions of Slavic people to solve some European problems.

    Oh, by the way, my fourth great grandfather managed to survive the war, although he was fighting from the very beginning, but after the Victory, Mr. Stalin send him in Gulag for 10 years, just because before the war he was convinced as “an enemy of the people”, i hope you understand the objectivity of the stalinist trials.

    And don’t forget that Mr. Stalin managed to kill 20 millions, Nazi killed 5 millions, so during Nuremberg process Mr.Stalin and many, many other soviet bosses should be presented as defendants and hanged.

    And I don’t care about freedom loving coders, they can spend their time how they want, but don’t make me use their amateurish stuff.

    To pay once in 5 years $100 for a good OS it is not that expensive.

  14. kozmcrae says:

    iLia wrote:

    “So go ahead, Mr.Pogson, start promoting …[ a whole lot of nasty stuff ]… governments all over the world like such things.”

    I’m not sure what you hope to accomplish with such over-the-top associations. No one is going to take you seriously. And you’ll just erode whatever credibility you may have had.

    Later he wrote:

    “This Chramosta is another Linux-worshiper and FLOSS-Goebbels, or maybe they simply convert their documents in PDF before sending them?”

    I guess you are not familiar with you county’s history. You fought a Great Patriotic War against Joseph Goebbels and his countrymen. It was touch and go there for a while in the beginning. Russia almost didn’t make it. Associating Joseph Goebbels with Petr Chramosta trivializes him, Mr. Goebbels that is. Are you sure you want to do that? And that kind of trivializes the sacrifice of your country’s Greatest Generation. Just so you can try to tear down the efforts of freedom loving coders. You are not on the side of freedom iLia. Have a melt down and think about that.

  15. Phenom wrote, “Who simply want to get their work done with the tools they know.”

    The folks knew GNU/Linux tools and were happy with them. The bosses, apparently, were less flexible, a top-down choice but silly, expensive and inefficient. Presumably they have fewer bosses than workers so they could have equipped/retrained the bosses for less cost than reverting.

    I have had bosses like that. One time I was in a school where the lab had been changed from Lose ’98 to XP with new machines. There was a stack of old Lose ’98 machines in storage when I was hired. I quickly put them to work in classrooms with GNU/Linux, so an unused resource became useful. This was about 2003. As it happened, a PC in the staff room refused to boot. I just installed GNU/Linux on it and left a post-ittm note how to boot and browse. The boss happened in on a visit from head office and happened to touch the GNU/Linux machine. He freaked… It was no issue at all for the other staff. Thankfullly, he never entered the high school classrooms where bunches of those old machines were happily being thin clients of Beast I and giving students the best performance in the building… 😉

  16. iLia says:

    Grygov has about 1400 inhabitants. The local administration uses ten desktop PCs and less than a handful of servers. The local network connects some 160 households.

    Not a big deal.

    Actually Russian Maykop has about 140 000 inhabitants, and they switched back to Windows, as their desktop OS.

    “We have no problems exchanging documents, and that includes some complicated documents with tables that we exchange with ministries and the regional administration.”

    I simply do not believe in it!

    This Chramosta is another Linux-worshiper and FLOSS-Goebbels, or maybe they simply convert their documents in PDF before sending them?

  17. Phenom says:

    Pogson wrote: They are accounting, permitting, communicating, etc. , general-purpose computing

    Who don’t know what an operating system is, let alone care about floss or other philosophies. Who simply want to get their work done with the tools they know.

  18. iLia wrote, “the employees were liking FLOSS

    What kind of employees? Linuxoids? System administrators? Ask professional designers why they don’t use Linux, or ask gamers why they don’t use Linux.”

    It’s a municipal government. How many designers or gamers are they likely to have on the payroll? Most municipal governments have a ton of clerks, a few secretaries and some bosses. They are accounting, permitting, communicating, etc. , general-purpose computing.

  19. Clarence Moon says:

    You rail about ills in the world, Mr. iLia, but the only things that truly matter to many here are the demise of Microsoft and the rise of GNU, never mind Linux.

  20. iLia says:

    the employees were liking FLOSS

    What kind of employees? Linuxoids? System administrators? Ask professional designers why they don’t use Linux, or ask gamers why they don’t use Linux.

    And don’t forget that this people joined EU, a totalitarian super-state, of their own free will.

    What does it mean? It means that they voluntary gave up their rights to govern their own lives. And it means that they are very, very pliant to cheap propaganda!

    So, I don’t trust them! It seams to me that the only way Linux is can be imposed on users is through government regulations and decrees.

    So go ahead, Mr.Pogson, start promoting UN, Agenda 21, abolishment of human rights in favor of equality, One Child Per Family, forced abortions in Africa, India and China, Internet censorship, junk food, abolishment of Canadian sovereignty in favor of North American Union, it seams to me that governments all over the world like such things.

    The only exception is young tech-males, others prefer to stay as far as possible from Linux, and many of they actually prefer to pay a lot money to Apple.

    It seams to me that people really like small and expensive stuff. The most people buy the most expensive stuff they can afford. And the cheap stuff goes to the poor and money-less basement-dweller geeks.

Leave a Reply