"The history of Unix is judged a tragedy by those who regret how
a great operating system failed to establish itself as a unified
standard. The fate of Unix is well known. Split by commercial
vendors into into a babel of incompatible versions, today the
various Unixes compete only with each other for a piece of the
dwindling Unix market."
"Could history repeat itself with Linux? It is true that the
GNU General Public License (GPL) gives Open Source developers the
explicit right to mutate any GPL'd project, thus opening the door
to a potentially injurious "code fork." But, in a seeming paradox,
Open Source developers regard the right to fork as a mechanism that
protects against the actual possibility of a fork. At the same
time, they view the absence of that right in the Sun Community
Source License (SCSL), used for Java, Solaris, and Jini, earns
derision for the SCSL as a feeble substitute for the more
"This poses a challenge for Linux implementors in the business
world: they probably have to work hard to fight customer fears that
GNU/Linux will fragment into a hundred incompatible versions
because there's no single big corporation in charge. And here I
come, saying isn't it wonderful that Open Source licenses guarantee
everyone the right to do just that."
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