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NewsForge: When VA was the news

Aug 30, 2001, 11:45 (9 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jack Bryar)
"...Reporters who had managed to get into the announcement teleconference reported that VA would rely on sales of proprietary software in the future. So much for Open Source. The next day Eric S. Raymond added his own spin, as he distributed a message suggesting that VA's commitment to proprietary enhancements amounted to little more than an interim marketing tactic. Raymond said, "There is less here than meets the eye. This is a change in tactics, not strategy."

Raymond suggested that VA's problems were due in part to conservative IT managers, and that the only way to get these managers to buy software instead of simply downloading it and using it required "hanging some proprietary tinsel off the product." Raymond suggested strongly that VA's strategy and value proposition continued to be focused on "the service contract."

Unfortunately, there is little evidence to suggest that "conservatism" or a corporate reluctance to embrace Linux had much to do with VA's problems. On the contrary, Linux is rapidly being brought into enterprise environments, at least experimentally. According to Carl Howe of Forrester Research, better than half of the largest U.S. corporations have adopted Open Source for one or more projects in the last year, an adoption rate that exceeds the PC revolution in its earliest days."

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