A Look to the Future
In 1993, before I began publishing Linux Journal, I knew that in order to succeed the magazine would need the support of the Linux community. At that time, most of the community existed on the Internet—not surprising, since Linux development was primarily on the Internet and most developers had met only over the Internet.
To test the waters, I posted a questionnaire to the comp.os.linux newsgroup on Usenet. I had two goals: to find out how much interest existed for a print publication and what information was needed. Interest was high; I received very positive feedback. My goal was to have Linux Journal address as many of the needs of the community as possible.
The first need was to help newcomers join the Linux community. Many were not familiar with Usenet or didn't have access to it. These newcomers needed an accessible source of information in a convenient format—a print magazine addressed that market.
Introducing businesses to Linux was another area that had to be addressed. While our very existence was a help—many people have told us they managed to get Linux integrated into their business by showing their boss a copy of LJ to prove Linux was real—we wanted to be more active. We started our “Linux Means Business” column to show LJ readers where Linux was being used as a business solution.
Today, the Linux community is quite different from what it was five or six years ago. A strong development community still exists, but the business and commercial user community is now a significant portion of the total Linux community and growing rapidly. Linux is no longer a development project—it is a real solution for a significant number of enterprises.
The Jay Jacobs retail chain is installing point of sale systems based on Linux in their 180 stores. The U.S. Postal Service has installed 5000 OCR systems based on Linux to scan mail. Also, Linux is being used to run elevators in Japan, trains in Germany and interactive TV in Denmark—even to mediate reality in Canada.
Is there still a community here? Yes. Its members aren't sales clerks in Jay Jacobs stores or postal workers bagging mail, who most likely don't even know they are using Linux. They are the people porting software to Linux, IT managers selecting Linux and those installing Linux. These people need to work together and learn from the work of others.
To help build this community, Linux Journal has done two things. First, I volunteered to coordinate a mailing list for Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) as part of the Linux standardization project. This list is designed to give ISVs an opportunity to have a united voice in the standardization effort. Second, we added an IT Solutions supplement to Linux Journal, designed to help IT professionals see Linux as a possible solution to their needs. The first supplement appeared with the January, 1999 issue of LJ; the next will appear with the June issue.
We are, in fact, building two communities. If this was happening with proprietary software such as Microsoft products, I would see this as a problem. In the Linux realm, however, I feel all is well. Let me explain.
The Linux development community benefits from growth in the commercial use of Linux. This growth also means more hardware and software vendors will want to support Linux, resulting in more potential employment for Linux professionals.
On the other end, commercial users of Linux benefit from growth in the development community. Unlike proprietary software, more developers means better software without increased cost.
These two communities complement each other. Their levels of interests or understanding may not all be the same, but one benefits the other; hence, cooperation is needed between the two.
Linux Journal has plans to aid in that cooperation. Just as we provided a forum for developers and newcomers in the early stages, we hope to provide a forum for the development and commercial communities to better understand each other. We are addressing this goal by doing the following:
IT Solutions supplements, help for business professionals wanting to know what Linux can do for them
Linux Resources (http://www.linuxresources.com/), a starting place for finding all you want to know about Linux
Linux Journal Interactive (http://interactive.linuxjournal.com/), containing serious articles on Linux from both a technical and a business point of view
Linux Gazette (http://www.linuxgazette.com/), an open forum for discussion of technical issues, as well as articles and Linux tips
SSC, the owner of Linux Journal, publishes books and reference cards to help people use Linux and Linux-related programs. Examples include books on Samba and the GIMP and a whole series of reference cards to help the more technical user deal with utility programs included in Linux distributions. In 1999, expect to see new titles to help Linux move to the desktop. More information can be found at http://www.ssc.com/.
The bottom line is we have been a part of the Linux community since 1993 when SSC first began selling Linux distributions. The Linux community and Linux Journal have grown up together, and we plan to remain the primary print resource for Linux as its evolution continues.
Phil Hughes, Publisher
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
July 20, 2016 12:00 pm CDT
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
Free to Linux Journal readers.Register Now!
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With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide