Newsbytes: Linux Seeks Balance Of Openness, Simplicity – Keynote

“Seeking to explain the lure of the Linux operating system, Bob
Young, chief executive of Red Hat Software, Inc., seizes on a
phrase he admits he borrowed from a colleague. ‘Would you buy a car
with the hood welded shut?'”

“Most people wouldn’t, Young pointed out in a keynote address at
Comdex/Canada Thursday, yet buying most commercial software today
is very like buying a car that cannot be repaired by anyone but the
manufacturer. Young said he believes the reason for Linux’s
popularity is the fact that those who use it get the source code,
which they can modify as they wish.”

“In fact, he said, the US regional Bell operating company SBC
Communications Corp. chose Linux for some highly critical systems
not because SBC thought Linux was better than Windows NT or one of
the commercial releases of Unix, but because there were things SBC
wanted that the other systems would not do. ‘They had to use Linux,
because it was the only operating system that they could make do
what they needed to make it do.'”

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