View Full Version : South African Don't Understand FOSS (???)

May 22nd, 2008, 08:49 PM
Read here:


“Any innovation on Linux that is broadly applicable will immediately be picked up by Red Hat or Novell and commercialized globally with little economic benefit coming back to SA.”

Not that I'm a South African, but, ugh... Just read for yourself...

May 22nd, 2008, 09:02 PM
This is according to Microsoft director of corporate standards, Jason Matusow.

I am from SA, and I am regarding these comments in a slightly dubious light....

“Deep dev of the core OS” was not likely to happen in South Africa where students were “still grappling with coding skills”, says Matusow. They are “not going to dive into the inner workings of Linux”, says Matusow.

Ok well, last time I checked we were still a developing country. We still need to feed people, let alone teach them how to use computers. We dont have the resources of other First world nations to be able to do hardcore development.

One response to Matusow points out that a number of key open source projects have South African roots. Ubuntu, the most popular Linux distribution, was founded by South African Mark Shuttleworth while OpenBSD and OpenSSH are the brainchild of ex-South African Theo de Raadt.

Again, read the whole thing. Dont take everything you read at face value. Question, enquire, investigate...

May 22nd, 2008, 09:16 PM
Again, read the whole thing. Dont take everything you read at face value. Question, enquire, investigate...

Actually, I've read it a few times before posting here. It's not about the last paragraph that I find "interesting".

But this:

Despite having an open source strategy the South African government doesn’t really understand how to benefit from OSS.

What was he thinking? How about not having to pay extraordinary expenses just for upgrading MS Office in every departments for a start? And that also applies to every nations on earth as well.

And yes, there are a lot more of other developing nations. And the numbers of software developers coming from such nations are understandably far lower, not to mention decent internet connection in those countries. But contributing to a F/OSS development isn't only about coding, like a reply in that link:

Why he thinks that “going to dive into the inner workings of Linux” is necessary for participation in the free software ecosystem is beyond me : there are plenty of other valuable contributions such as translation, documentation, quality assurance, forum moderation, community development or teaching users.

May 22nd, 2008, 10:26 PM
I believe nothing about open source that a Microsoft employee says. For me, the fact that they are employed by Microsoft completely invalidates any opinion they might give. But that's just me. ... :roll: