The FSGs funding had risen more than 40 percent over last year and is expected to rise even more significantly going forward. "We have some 35 corporate sponsors now as well as a number of member organizations. Our goal is to quintuple the number of application vendors participating in the group," he said. The FSG wants dozens of new applications on the Linux platform by end of this year, but it is counterproductive to hold Linux distribution vendors to a rigid time frame for supporting the LSB, he said.The large vendors are also stepping forward to voice their support for the LSB. Scot Handy, vice president for worldwide Linux at IBM, in Somers, N.Y., said that the LSB and IBM share the goal of making it easier for ISVs to target the larger multiplatform Linux opportunity. Wim Coekaerts, director of Linux kernel engineering at Oracle, said the support of open standards would enable Linux to achieve mass enterprise-class adoption. Jeff Hawkins, vice president of Novells Linux Business Office, said the company sees multiple advantages of a well-supported binary standard for Linux. "The LSB clearly has the momentum of the industry and is providing a crucial piece of the ongoing success of Linux," he said. Asked about the next release of the specification, LSB 3.0, Zemlin said this is on track for release later this month and will include cryptography, some key core libraries and a planned C++ update. "This is fairly close to release at this point; we are finalizing bug fixes and preparing the release candidates," he said. Regarding the move to componentize the specification, first reported by eWEEK in January, Zemlin said this is working well. "We have people contributing across a range of different components and working modularly on the standard so that we can drop in different components over time," he said. "We want more to be included in the standard so that it will address the needs of, and attract, a broader set of ISVs, and this modular approach will facilitate that and will bring them onboard as active participants," he said. Turning to the next major release of the LSB specification in about 20 months, Version 4.0, Zemlin said this will be a "massive historic turning point and will see great acceptance from application vendors and users. Hopefully, the LSB will also be a formal ISO standard by then. We are also working with the Chinese government to help with platform certification work as they are adopting the LSB as the core of their emerging Linux standard," he said. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest open-source news, reviews and analysis.
But the FSGs efforts to actively recruit ISVs are just beginning. "I believe this is just the tip of iceberg of ISV support for the LSB. While we are actively recruiting software vendors to be part of this effort, and we are aware that this battle will be won over time, it is a multiyear battle," Zemlin said.