Emergic: Rajesh Jain's Blog

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Playing the Linux Game

May 21st, 2003 · No Comments

IT-Director has an article on the Linux Game: “Players compete to make their business commercially viable in a world of Open Software. There are no rules.”

Linux getting traction on the desktop is clearly Microsoft’s nightmare. Microsoft knows how fast a market can flip over. After all, it watched Excel rip the spreadsheet market from Lotus in a few short years and it watched Microsoft Word perform the same trick on WordPerfect. Right now desktop Linux is still a market for enthusiasts and hobbyist, but the developer trend tells me that it won’t remain so forever, and the leaked email may even prove to be a trigger for change.

So Steve Ballmer insists that Microsoft will not port its products to Linux. Let me make a prediction.

Within the next 5 years Microsoft will announce that it is porting its office products and many of its other products to Linux.

An important point: “Platforms gain market share by virtue of applications. So for email, Windows is dominant, in web servers it’s a fairly even match, for running ERP systems Linux is on the up, Windows has some of the action and Unix, OS/400 and OS/390 are all players. The ultimate driver of the market is what developers are developing for.”

Linux needs to exploit its existing applications base. There are thousands of open-source apps, which need to be highlighted. The developers are already there; what’s missing is the aggregation of what they have developed.

Tags: Software

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