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InfoWorld: Bob Young: The CEO of Red Hat says Linux momentum begets momentum

Aug 21, 2000, 01:53 (15 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Tom Sullivan)

"Infoworld: What are GNOME's challenges?"

"Young: The obvious one is applications. The beauty of it, though, is Microsoft didn't achieve its dominance by convincing people to unplug their DEC minicomputers and replace it with DOS. They took advantage of a huge shift in computing from the minicomputer to the PC, and Microsoft became the industry standard OS for that new technology. Tactically, we've been building all the desktop tools, and I expect we'll be reasonably successful in the classic desktop market, but it's a hard row to hoe -- to displace Windows thoroughly. The opportunity is that the future of computing is not on the desktop. The future of computing is in the Internet appliance and, of course, in many cases the Internet appliance is going to look very similar to what people think of as a PC. It really boils down to what you use it for, and if the bulk of the applications are actually on the Net or on your intranet, then it really is an Internet appliance; it's not a PC at all. And in that model, who needs Windows?"

"InfoWorld: Will corporations be willing to move away from Microsoft Office applications?"

"Young: The vast majority of us do not need the functionality of Microsoft Office. There is a subset of us who do, and Microsoft should be encouraged and allowed to serve that marketplace, because they actually build good office suite technology. The problem is we're all paying too much for it. Corporations are buying every one of their users a copy of Microsoft Office when only one out of 10 of their employees actually use the functionality of Microsoft Office. As soon as the CFOs start reigning in the MIS directors' willingness to write massive checks to Microsoft for licenses they do not need, you're going to see our share of the desktops increase."

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