Page 2

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2003-07-10 Print this article Print

"HP does not allow any software to be open sourced if it cannot be proved that the rights to that code belongs to us. You also shouldnt open source a product if it competes against other products in the open-source community and doesnt add value or differentiate itself in any way," she said. Customers should use open-source technologies if they want to promote an existing standard or if there is an existing, pervasive technology, she said, adding that there are also some cases where open-source technologies should not be used.
These include instances where the technologys direction does not match the companys strategic goals; if the products chief architect does not agree with the proposal; and if the time-to-market is critical and that product does not currently have all the features needed, she said.
HPs internal open source policy was designed to ensure legal compliance, honor open source licenses, prevent unintentional "copylefting," establish proper business controls based on a clear understanding of open source, and have a place where all open-source projects are understood, Peters said. Open source customers also need to understand what they are using and the license governing it. Support levels also differ and are often not included with open-source products. Documentation is sometimes not available or as comprehensive as with proprietary products, and indemnification and warranties can also be different from a piece of proprietary software. Customers, especially governments, also want to know who is contributing the code, and are concerned about possible issues around ownership of that code, she said.

Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at


Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel