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TechRepublic/Gartner: Vendors to work together on common desktop and application suite for Linux

Aug 25, 2000, 02:38 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Chris Le Tocq)

"Sun Microsystems has joined other major vendors in supporting the GNOME Foundation to create a Linux-based desktop, including open source productivity application services (PAS). ... Sun has committed to making the GNOME desktop the standard for Solaris in 2001. Although significant to UNIX desktop users, Gartner believes that Linux on the desktop and Linux PAS will make little headway in the United States—except where Linux is an embedded operating system for appliances whose primary interface is the Internet browser. Outside the United States where Microsoft is less entrenched (e.g., China), a Linux-based desktop and PAS could find opportunities. The GNOME Foundation and OpenOffice Foundation raise the level of competition with Microsoft but only a little."

"The announcement has more significance for Web-based PAS and productivity service developers. The GNOME project will provide a component system, XML file interchange standards and filters for other file formats. This announcement represents the open source threat to Microsoft's Windows.NET. However, a notable absence from the GNOME project's list of technology is synchronization—a clear requirement for effective Web PAS."

"Although multivendor cooperative projects do not have a stellar history of success, the open source movement is the best vehicle yet for derailing partisanship. ... The announcement is a good first step, but as with Windows.NET, the availability of services is essential to its success... The GNOME project has focused on UNIX; to succeed, the focus must shift to the Web."

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