LinuxWorld 2003 in San Francisco
By Bill Claybrook
July 25, 2003
Usually by this time of the summer, I have fielded a number of calls from journalists asking me what I might expect to be big news at LinuxWorld (scheduled for Aug. 4-7 in San Francisco). So far, I have gotten no calls on this. But I am still getting lots of journalists calling me about the SCO vs. IBM lawsuit [ http://www.aberdeen.com/ab_abstracts/2003/03/03030019.htm ]. Journalists are looking for stories in this lawsuit, sometimes seeking out a potential conspiracy or a new angle that will bewilder all of us.
One question I got today concerned whether the announcement by IBM that it is giving away a free SuSE license with the purchase of pSeries servers had anything to do with the lawsuit. I suppose that you could conjure up something that would tie the two together, but I viewed it as just an action by IBM to get some headlines. Maybe this is an attempt to let us all know that IBM is alive and is still supporting Linux [ http://www.aberdeen.com/ab_company/hottopics/ibmlinux/default.htm ], but I’d rather think that this is not the case. IBM wants to sell pSeries servers to run Linux because it believes pSeries servers offer more bang for the buck for users who need 64-bit Linux — and IBM makes more money selling pSeries than selling xSeries servers.
The buzz around LinuxWorld this year will surely include the SCO vs. IBM lawsuit (watch for my Weblog posts from San Fransisco). But there are other things of interest there as well. HP and IBM have new announcements (HP’s are still under NDA) that will interest enterprise users. As far as I know, Sun has nothing new to announce, but a new eight-way AMD Opteron Linux platform would be great news from Sun. OSDL, which has a new CEO and a new vision, will generate some interest, especially since Linus now works at OSDL (see my OSDL-related Weblog posts from July 24 and 21 and June 20).
LinuxWorld is maturing [ http://www.aberdeen.com/ab_abstracts/2003/02/02030009.htm ] so rapidly that the conferences are not as much fun as they used to be. Only two or three years ago, you would see 13-year-old boys moving around the exhibit floor with bags full of marketing collateral. After they got tired, they would sit against the wall and look at all the stuff that they had collected. I have not noticed that the last couple of years. Maybe one of them will be the next Linus and the fun can start again.