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[News] How Separability Makes GNU/Linux Stronger Than Macs, Windows

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Linux is a mixture, windows is a compound.

,----[ Quote ]
| On the other side of the fence. Due to windows being a compound it cannot be 
| changed. One version of windows is only suitable for a single role. You have 
| no choice in the choosing of elements in windows. You cannot have it work 
| under several different file systems. You cannot replace the windowing 
| manager etc. etc. If you did want to do something like have a different 
| window manager or internet browser then all you can do is layer those 
| programs on top of the windows operating system. You cannot remove the 
| original programs or replace them and the layered programs will never be as 
| integrated as in a Linux system. Like many compounds, windows is also very 
| reactive. Any problems or corrosive substances (virus, spyware) coming into 
| contact with a windows compound effects the whole system.           



Modularity Gets Down to Business

,----[ Quote ]
| What's noteworthy here is that we have one company, Optaros, creating open
| source software to make the open source code of another company, Alfresco,
| work better. Again, this is a unique ability of free software, which both
| makes the code available, and adopts a licence designed to allow others to
| build upon it.


Why is Open Source/Community Developed Better?

,----[ Quote ]
| Anyway, just in case anyone was wondering, we are still arguing over which
| software is better, and I don't think we will ever stop, even if it is clear
| open source software has several advantages. What kind of advantages? Many:
| portability, enhancement, minimization, security, and dedication.


In Praise of Modularity

,----[ Quote ]
| In other words, the fact that he was working from his bedroom in Helsinki,
| with a team of coders around the world, whom he had never met, linked by the
| Internet, meant that the work on the kernel had to be parcelled out in a very
| precise way. This, in its turn, meant that the interface between the parcels
| had to be kept very clean – there was no scope for “fudges” to make stuff
| work.
| The knock-on consequence of this well-organised code was that new modules
| could be swapped in extremely easily. So when somebody came up with a better
| solution to a particular part of the kernel it was relatively easy to adopt
| it. This drove an extremely rapid evolution of the code while preserving
| great robustness.
| Modularity, and the re-use it allows, have since become two of the hallmarks
| of open source software. Indeed, the idea of modularity has proved so
| successful, that it has been applied at the next level up, in the creation of
| distributions. As opposed to the monolithic approaches of Windows, say, where
| elements are tightly integrated across packages and applications, the free
| software approach is to keep everything very loosely coupled so as to allow
| maximum flexibility, but without sacrificing compatibility.


The Linux Saga: Preface

,----[ Quote ]
| Chapter 7: More on those toy bricks
| One of the advantages of a UNIX system is the possibility to replace any part
| of the system with another provided that it has the same
| interface/functionality. You don’t like BASH? Use tcsh. You don’t like KDE?
| There is GNOME, Xfce.
| These are those basic rules on which UNIX is based that made this system so
| flexible. From, desktops, servers, mainframes to supercomputers and back to
| small mobile devices like smartphones or MIDs…


The Marvels of Modularity

,----[ Quote ]
| One word that has cropped up time and again on this blog is "modularity".
| It's one of the prime characteristics of the open source way - and one of its
| greatest strengths. Now wonder, then, that Microsoft has finalled cottoned
| on - helped, no doubt, by the abject failure of its Vista monster  
| [...]
| Needless to say, though, even in making this sensible move, Microsoft manages
| to add a touch of absurdity:
|     Unsurprisingly, Microsoft already has a patent on a "modular operating
|     system" concept.  
| A patent on modularity? Give me a break....



Microsoft to Release Modular Operating Systems

,----[ Quote ]
| Confirming Gartner's prediction, Microsoft has filed for a patent with
| the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for a modular operating system.
| The title of Microsoft's patent applications is "System and method
| for delivery of a modular operating system."
| [...]
| Instead of releasing a complete operating system, Microsoft will
| fragment the product, delivering a universal and basic core OS, and
| allowing the users to built upon the nucleus OS with additional
| operating system segments. In this manner, users will be enabled
| to buy the fundamental Windows Modular operating system and then
| add components, capabilities, features, each fragment with its own
| price tag and license.


Red Hat release renews OS debate

,----[ Quote ]
| Makers of "software appliances" are using the launch as an opportunity
| to predict that the days of the monolithic OS are numbered. They say
| the future lies in a modular system in which software runs with only
| enough lines of OS code to make it work.
| Some see promise in the appliance alternative to the OS, while
| skeptics think large enterprises will still need a general-purpose OS.
| The same questions arose recently around the launch of Microsoft
| Corp. Windows Vista. A trio of Gartner Inc. analysts published a
| report in 2006 that said the increasing complexity of Windows
| makes it "unsustainable." Gartner predicted Windows will be
| broken up into modular components.


Raising the abstraction level in open source

,----[ Quote ]
| Our view is that project plans are the latest evolutionary bump
| in the abstraction level - plans are the 'source' for the steps
| that enables the completion of a goal.


The Benefits of Modular Programming

,----[ Quote ]
| Consider how Linux distributions work. RedHat's Fedora, Mandriva, SUSE,
| and Debian all contain largely the same applications, written by the
| same people. The distributor simply packages them and provides the
| "glue" to install them together.

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