WorldWatch Week in Review

A look at worldwide OSS news for the week of August 23 - 29.

This week in WorldWatch.LinuxGazette, the most popular article was posted on Wednesday. In it we reported on how Microsoft has switched its servers to Linux because of continuing worms, viruses and other such problems that have plagued the Internet lately. Although it's not really a significant event, as we're sure they'll switch back to their own software as soon as possible, it certainly was amusing. But what else could they have done--fixed their own software in two weeks? In contrast, we thought that one of the least-read articles, about how the California Supreme Court has decided that banning the posting of the DeCSS DVD code-cracking software was not a violation of free speech rights in the US, was one of the more significant news items this week. We find it simply amazing that the gap between legality and reality has widened so much, especially in the US. We're guessing that our readers are already savvy to the meaning of this type of decision.

As this article about what's happening in Brazil points out, people in other parts of the world are embracing the changes, listening to such luminaries of the OSS movement as Richard Stallman, who was present at the event. Here's another encouraging article about the acceptance of OSS in the business community in India.

Of course, it's really a mixed bag in the US, as this article shows; we also covered a new open-source hardware/software group that, although formed in the US, is trying to bring the revolution to the Arab world.

We couldn't pass through such a busy week without news about SCO: there were some new FUD debunking, distant rumblings of a new lawsuit against SCO in New Zealand and a not-so-pithy but amusing article from The Economist. We also made note of a Web-based protest against the coming EU software patent directives, which are due to be submitted to the EU parliament on the first of September.

Two of our readers submitted articles that we published this week. One is an opinion piece from Phil Hughes entitled OSS in the Third World. Phil has been thinking a lot about this subject since he moved here to Costa Rica; his article is worth a read and may change your perspective. The other was a link from Brazzil.com by an anonymous poster; the article is entitled Microsoft, Go Home!, which reflects the mood of many OSS activists in Brazil.

It was a busy and interesting week here at WorldWatch. We now are installed in our new office, and with any luck, we will have a real Internet connection in two weeks. Thanks for your patience during the move.

Willy Smith is Editor in Chief of WorldWatch.LinuxGazette and lives in Costa Rica.

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