There's nothing like a stoush to grab an audience. I'm thrilled that Julian Bajkowski's article "SCO war of attrition descends to farce" (page 6) scored fantastic online hit rates when we put it up on our site, but left wondering if "Source Wars, Episode 7" is more world series wrestling than really serious reckoning. This round of the battle has Red Hat tag-teaming with IBM in a legal counterattack on SCO. Nursing a broken ankle (rumoured to be from a leaping headlock manoeuvre gone wrong), Mark Webbink general counsel for Red Hat is now kicking out with claims that SCO cannot survive the legal war of attrition. SCO has countered by putting up some scary posters. The posters, pegged in the ground outside SCO's corporate HQ, include one showing Linus Torvalds as a fat, dope-smoking hippie wearing a T-shirt bearing the slogan "Legalise stupidity, smoke Linux".
More serious open source discussion happened last week at SAGE-AU (System Administrators Guild of Australia) conference in Hobart. Techies at that show like Andrew Whyte, corporate systems administrator at Central Queensland University (CQU), believe that Linux is not ready to run high-end systems because of the lack of vendor support and frequent kernel updates (see page 10). Whyte said the Uni's experience with Linux was problematic due to the lack of vendor software updates. I reckon the experiences of Whyte & Co represent the real but relatively boring Linux story right now.
I'm predicting a full industry recovery in 2004, based on nothing more solid than the vibe of current investment trends in convention parties, seasonally adjusted. I've had reports that the dancers with "SAP" plastered across their bikini bums were absolute stars at a recent Genasys conference in Melbourne. This, I'm told, was the best SAP branding ever. Look for a spike in SAP sales. I've heard that Tech Ed, now on in Brisbane, is enjoying the record attendance of some 1600 delegates.
These lucky souls are getting the message that Microsoft staff is truly vertically aligned to the needs of their business and all that old stuff such as enterprise licence agreements pushing up software costs by 40 per cent is now in the past. The friendly message was reinforced by a party at Club Family in Fortitude Valley where the chicken rolls, wine, beer and the Sandman were all on Microsoft. Spirits were extra. Look for a spike in sales of Microsoft's vertical solutions. Then there was the infamous SAGE_AU conference in Tassie from where our intrepid reporter Rodney Gedda claimed to be the skinniest guy in the whole joint. It's clear that sysadmins remain well fed. Look for spike in Coke and pizza sales. Next event coming up is Dimension Data Forum 12. Which is bound to cause a spike in something.