Subject: Re: What should Sun do?
From: Anthony Long <along@flexiety.com>
Date: Tue, 01 Feb 2005 05:34:05 -0500
Tue, 01 Feb 2005 05:34:05 -0500


David N. Welton wrote:

>Tim O'Reilly <tim@oreilly.com> writes:
>
>  
>
>>On Jan 31, 2005, at 12:52 PM, Laurent GUERBY wrote:
>>    
>>
>
>  
>
>>>Sun main contribution to free software is Open Office, much more
>>>significant than Mozilla and probably the biggest contribution
>>>ever by a proprietary software company.
>>>      
>>>
>
>  
>
>>Actually, openoffice.org is just the tip of the iceberg.  If I
>>recall (albeit dimly), when Rishab Ghosh did analysis of the
>>copyrights in a typical Linux distribution, about 5% of the code was
>>copyright Sun -- a higher percentage than was copyright the FSF,
>>btw.
>>    
>>
>
>So I suppose that brings us back to the initial question.  If they
>have all this code out there, they are getting a terrible 'image'
>return on their investment.  What do they need to do to turn that
>around?
>
>I think it's a message problem, in part.  Redhat might not have all
>that money, but they are pretty much 100% "on our side", whereas Sun
>has put out very mixed messages.  In terms of a 'warm fuzzy feeling'
>with the free software world, it would appear that people value the
>moral support more than the financial or even code support, if the
>money or code doesn't come with a strong endorsement of the ideas
>behind it.
>
>  
>
Do people think it would help the image of Sun to donate the 
OpenOffice.org codebase and project to a non-profit consortium made up 
of key players such as Sun, Red Hat, Novell, and others who have a stake 
in OpenOffice.org?  Would this help increase code contributions from 
other corporations and individual volunteers?




David N. Welton wrote:
Tim O'Reilly <tim@oreilly.com> writes:

  
On Jan 31, 2005, at 12:52 PM, Laurent GUERBY wrote:
    

  
Sun main contribution to free software is Open Office, much more
significant than Mozilla and probably the biggest contribution
ever by a proprietary software company.
      

  
Actually, openoffice.org is just the tip of the iceberg.  If I
recall (albeit dimly), when Rishab Ghosh did analysis of the
copyrights in a typical Linux distribution, about 5% of the code was
copyright Sun -- a higher percentage than was copyright the FSF,
btw.
    

So I suppose that brings us back to the initial question.  If they
have all this code out there, they are getting a terrible 'image'
return on their investment.  What do they need to do to turn that
around?

I think it's a message problem, in part.  Redhat might not have all
that money, but they are pretty much 100% "on our side", whereas Sun
has put out very mixed messages.  In terms of a 'warm fuzzy feeling'
with the free software world, it would appear that people value the
moral support more than the financial or even code support, if the
money or code doesn't come with a strong endorsement of the ideas
behind it.

  
Do people think it would help the image of Sun to donate the OpenOffice.org codebase and project to a non-profit consortium made up of key players such as Sun, Red Hat, Novell, and others who have a stake in OpenOffice.org?  Would this help increase code contributions from other corporations and individual volunteers?