Open conversations, like "Open Source" communities, are a wonder. There's an intriguing conversation going on right now online between Linux author/guru Linus Torvalds and Jonathan Schwartz, president of SUN Microsystems around Open Source Solaris. Solaris is, of course, SUN's wonderfully robust operating system.
For background, Open Source refers in this post to software that is by design open to public modification, enhancement and updating. Thus, Open Source code is generally released with very few copyright restrictions and collaboration is presumed. Torvalds is responsible for the LINUX kernal in the popular LINUX version of UNIX open source code.
Back to the story. Torvalds, a legend in the coding community, recently posted an article about Open Source Solaris from SUN where he expressed considerable enthusiasm, and some reservations about the company's future plans for making their services truly public. And, he made a couple of cynical predictions. Read his post here.
Not to be outdone, and ever mindful of the power of public discourse, Jonathan quickly responded with this post, and invited Linus to dinner. Sweet. It *is* important for these guys to talk. At least to users, managers and IT professionals everywhere. Read the posts for yourself and decide: Solaris, really open? Or not? Leave me a comment.
As with many of my peers, I confess that SUN is a particular interest and sentimental favorite of mine. I've posted about the company and its products before, here and again, here. We're all depending on Java a lot these days, and I often wonder if users really appreciate the role that SUN had in making that important technology widely available. Sure, they're competitive (What successful company isn't?) but the company also has made substantial and long-lasting contributions to the industry.