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MS Releases Open Source Alternative To BigTable

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the devil-puts-on-gloves dept.

Microsoft 163

gollito writes in with news that Microsoft has released an open source alternative to Google's BigTable file system, which is used on large distributed computer clusters. Matt Asay writes for CNet: "I also believe that Microsoft's fear-mongering around open source cost it years of productivity and quality gains that it could have been delivering to customers through open source. I hope that reign of ignorance is over."

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Wow... just wow. (5, Funny)

Jonas Buyl (1425319) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891849)

So this means pigs CAN fly?

Re:Wow... just wow. (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27891893)

Swine flu. Now anything can happen.

Re:Wow... just wow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892017)

You can't deny that swine flu changed everything.

Re:Wow... just wow. (1, Funny)

marco.antonio.costa (937534) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892207)

Are you trying to say swine flu didn't change EVERYTHING, Brian?

Is this what you're trying to say?

Huh?

Huh?

Re:Wow... just wow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27893997)

That's pretty much where I was going with that.
I'm glad retards have mod points so they can give the guy who spelled it all out +2 and ignore the simple yet effective post it was copied from.

Re:Wow... just wow. (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892041)

Only if that pig is seated in a chair in Ballmer's office.

Re:Wow... just wow. (0, Offtopic)

EvanED (569694) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892093)

I see Ballmer chair jokes around here quite a bit, and between not being all that funny in the first place and going on for years(?), they have just become stupid. But yours actually works for some reason... I laughed a little. If I still had my last mod point that expired sometime in the last day, I'd have modded you up.

Re:Wow... just wow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27894371)

wait, but how can he throw the chair while he is seated on It?

Re:Wow... just wow. (3, Funny)

jvd (874741) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892561)

Yep, pigs flu... I mean, flew. Bad joke, I know, I know.

Re:Wow... just wow. (1, Funny)

ouachiski (835136) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893279)

They said microsoft would release an open source project with some value when pigs fly......Swine flu

Re:Wow... just wow. (3, Insightful)

sheepofblue (1106227) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893423)

Or this is Microsoft trying to hurt Google because they fear them more than open source

Re:Wow... just wow. (1)

upuv (1201447) | more than 5 years ago | (#27894083)

Holy crap some large brown pink animal just fell out of the sky and crushed my Porche with my X in it.

Oh God my neighbors yappy Mexican pocket purse dog just got obliterated but appears to 400lbs of chops!

This is either a great day or about to be the worst day of my life!

I lol'd (4, Insightful)

Aranykai (1053846) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891851)

Is this really news, or just another opportunity for us to have everyones favorite slashdot debate?

Re:I lol'd (4, Funny)

brusk (135896) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891873)

The latter. Pirates are better.

Re:I lol'd (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892317)

What are you on about? A ninja can (and indeed has) take on a ship load of pirates. With a frozen shamrock.

Re:I lol'd (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892557)

so, how many didn't get the doctor mc ninja reference?

Re:I lol'd (2, Funny)

icannotthinkofaname (1480543) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892781)

C'mon, there's no way ninjas are better!

Have you ever heard of anyone ninjaing software? Or music? Or games? No one ninjas anything. It's all about the pirates! :D

Re:I lol'd (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892985)

Oh but they do, but they are so stealth that the **AA haven't even found out about it and they probably never will.

PS: Actually some people found out about it but were killed befo [CONNECTION RESET BY NINJA]

Re:I lol'd (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893061)

Could be the No Income No Job No Assets ninjas. They run off with your economy while you where hunting pirates.
Now poor Mr Ballmer has to play nice with the SCO slaying Euro trash.
Why could it not be like United Fruit.
Call in a favour from Washington, over throw the Finnish government and make sure all of this 'open source' stuff is lost in the confusion.
Permanently.

Re:I lol'd (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27894269)

It's only obvious you haven't heard about ninja anything. They are that much better at concealing themselves :)

Re: Lumberjack Commandos (1)

Phrogman (80473) | more than 5 years ago | (#27894287)

I meet your ninjas and your pirates and raise you Lumberjack Commandos: [wordpress.com]

Re:I lol'd (5, Funny)

hairykrishna (740240) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892675)

Rubbish

emacs is clearly superior

Re:I lol'd (1)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893533)

Rubbish

emacs is a clearly superior Operating System

There, fixed that for you.

Re:I lol'd (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27893661)

Cool! I just installed it on my machine. Do you know where I can find a decent text editor for it?

Re:I lol'd (1)

edmazur (958154) | more than 5 years ago | (#27894343)

Rubbish

emacs is clearly superior

Excuse me, but real programmers use butterflies [xkcd.com] .

The Internet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892839)

The INTERNET: All of the piracy, none of the scurvy.

Re:Sharing (1)

furbearntrout (1036146) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892271)

To be a ninja, you only have to share something you made yourself.

Re:I lol'd (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27893213)

Amiga trounces AtariST!

really? (5, Funny)

Darlo888 (1235928) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891879)

They open sourced the surface?

Re:really? (2, Informative)

Earthquake Retrofit (1372207) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891917)

Misleading headline. Here's [theregister.co.uk] the link to the Register article with more details. Nothing to do with the Surface. Steve

Re:really? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892565)

The article isn't that great. To quote:

When Kumo launches, in early June, it will be one of the first "shipping" Microsoft products to include open-source code.

What about the network stack in NT 3.1 (1993)? Or all the GPLed UNIX userspace utilities that ran on the POSIX layer and were shipped by MS at about the same time?

Re:really? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892713)

Do some real research and stop proliferating garbage. The SpiderTCP stack used in NT3.1 was licensed from Spider Systems, who obtained and modified the BSD code, which was distributed under the BSD license. SpiderTCP is not and has not ever been open source, even if it was based on open source code.

Re:really? (2, Insightful)

MarkKB (845289) | more than 5 years ago | (#27894243)

Not to mention that it was only supposed to be a temporary solution. Work on the new, Microsoft-written TCP/IP started shortly after NT 3.1 RTM'd, and was released in Windows NT 3.5 and Windows 95. The command-line networking programs (like ftp) that were ported along with Spider's TCP stack were left in, mainly because they worked well enough that Microsoft saw no reason to replace them.

Re:really? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892571)

Man, there needs to be a facepalm moderation.

Which license? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27891885)

So... the linked article says the Kumo search team (the ones who develop the FS) USE open source. But I can nowhere see that the FS is released as open source. A citation would be good, especially since the used license would be quit important.

Re:Which license? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892855)

The product is called Hbase [apache.org] / Apache license, so it is open source.

Re:Which license? (4, Informative)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892895)

So... the linked article says the Kumo search team (the ones who develop the FS) USE open source. But I can nowhere see that the FS is released as open source. A citation would be good, especially since the used license would be quit important.

You should check your glasses and re-RTFA. Two points there:

1) The Kumo search team did not develop the FS. They've used the one Apache Hadoop [apache.org] (guess the license).

2) The Kumo search team have implemented a BigTable analog on top of Hadoop FS, and that's what they've open sourced. The result [apache.org] is a subproject of Hadoop now (again, guess the license).

Also, this isn't obvious from TFA itself, but looking at the sources that it references, this is really old news: the blog post they link to is from 2007. It is also before Powerset was bought by Microsoft (that happened in 2008), so the relevance of all this to Microsoft policies is unclear.

It's not an alternative to BigTable (4, Insightful)

wilsoniya (902930) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891899)

Google doesn't sell/license BigTable in any way. It's used internally. I fail to see how it's possible to release an alternative to something which can't be acquired in any form.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27891983)

I disagree. If something exists, and that something has the same functionality as another thing, then it is an alternative. Just because it's not a [ractical alternative for wilsoniya, myself, or the rest of slashdot does not mean that is simply isn't "an alternative." I mean, have you actually contacted Google? And they said no?

It's certainly an alternative for Google (and I'd argue it's an alternative for anyone using a file system who wants to use a different file system, however impractical the end result).

So there.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (5, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892007)

Google doesn't sell/license BigTable in any way. It's used internally. I fail to see how it's possible to release an alternative to something which can't be acquired in any form.

Not completely correct. You can use BigTable right now. There are Google AppEngine APIs that can access BigTable. You just can't use it without using Google's servers, that's all.

If, at this point, you still can't see why it's completely obvious why Microsoft would write an alternative to BigTable and open source it, all I can say you haven't been paying attention.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (5, Interesting)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893975)

Open sourcing anything software-related is a bad idea for Microsoft, unlike Google. Google are in the search/advertising business, not the software business. Their "crown jewels" are the databases they've collected about everything. Microsoft are in the sofware business. Their "crown jewels" are the source code for their products.

You'll note that Google aren't opening up their crown jewels: you can't just download their raw web page index and do your own thing with it. Since they're not in the software business, they can afford to give away or open their software tools. Since Microsoft are in the software business, that hurts them.

Now there's an interesting symmetry here. Being (primarily) in the software business should mean that actual content and databases isn't too important for Microsoft. If they wanted to hurt Google, they would open up their raw msnsearch indexes and other useful content databases. That would hurt Google, because people could download massive competing data collections and create their own competing search engines without the huge resource investment in crawler farms etc.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (5, Informative)

prockcore (543967) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892021)

Using Google's AppEngine, you can use BigTable.. so while you can't install it on your own servers, you can still write software that uses it.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892279)

Using Google's AppEngine, you can use BigTable.. so while you can't install it on your own servers, you can still write software that uses it.

Which means that your appliance that uses BigTable needs continuous access to the Internet.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (5, Funny)

BikeHelmet (1437881) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892763)

Which means that your appliance that uses BigTable needs continuous access to the Internet.

What!? This is absolutely outrageous~! None of my servers have internet access!

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (1)

madsenj37 (612413) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892413)

Do the services that Google sell depend upon Big Table in anyway? If so, then this is an alternative to BigTable.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (1, Insightful)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892647)

I fail to see how it's possible to release an alternative to something which can't be acquired in any form.

Really? So if all proprietary compilers where not sold, but were instead kept in-house as development tools, then GCC would cease to be an open source/free software alternative to them?

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27893667)

if all proprietary compilers where not sold, but were instead kept in-house as development tools, then GCC would cease to be an open source/free software alternative to them?

Umm, I understand what you're trying to say, but.. yes.

You may want to look up the definition of alternative:

"S: (n) option, alternative, choice (one of a number of things from which only one can be chosen)"

In your example, there is no choice to be made - there is only GCC, so therefore (by definition) it would not be an alternative.

Re:It's not an alternative to BigTable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27894025)

It most definitely is an alternative. It is simply an alternative to something that YOU don't have access to. Renting an apartment and going to work almost every day of the work is an alternative to living on your own private Caribbean island and sipping cocktails on the beach whenever you feel like getting out of bed.

needs an expert opinion (3, Insightful)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891911)

"...I hope that reign of ignorance is over."

don't count on it, you know about embrace/extend/extinguish?

Re:needs an expert opinion (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892461)

Summarizing the entire quote in the article summary:

Matt Asay writes for CNet:
"Wah!"

Re:needs an expert opinion (0, Offtopic)

cboslin (1532787) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892833)

I wish the reign of ignorance was over. It is NOT. HINT: If reviewing CSPAN briefs of elected officials or the documentation on IT matters, pay attention to the word PROCUREMENT. The slant is decidedly in Microsoft s favor.

Procurement is being used to focus government agencies on buying Microsoft ONLY solutions.

The politicians looked like they were buying the FUD, hook, line and sinker. The ignorance is alive, well and fostering. More of a pandemic than any flu could be.

Linux is now greater than 2%, get curious and discover why for yourself! Is this why Microsoft is giving away their new OS for 1 YEAR?

Personally I think it is much higher than that, with the stats being skewed based on the source of the data. I also believe that Microsoft is very, very worried.

Not only does the FUD continue, but now Microsoft is releasing FREE copies of their new operating system for 1 YEAR ONLY. At the end of that one year you will have to remove it or pay to upgrade. (Was announced on Leo Laporte s radio, twit TV pod cast today and I was surprised)

I believe they are counting on ignorance of people to not give another operating system or applications a chance, at least for a year so that they can either improve their offering (thus extending...) or replace it with something better. They definitely appear to be trying hard to extinguish the flow of people to other operating systems.

If you HAD to purchase NEW HARDWARE to run Vista and / or Windows 7, keep the old system and load up native Linux (no dual boot, no WINE, no virtual machine initially, no extra anything that might introduce problems and cause unnecessary frustrations, just Linux) and start giving it a try, you might surprise yourself, much has changed in the last year with Linux! Besides, the old PC is no LONGER your primary machine, so go for it, and try some new solutions, you will be glad that you did. Sadly I am not aware of a way to give MacIntosh OS X a try on old PCs, perhaps someone reading this can provide a link for those interested in going there, as my preference is honestly Linux.

Note it is always better to buy hardware from a vendor that focuses on the operating sytem, either Linux or MacIntosh, that way the computer will run out of the box without problems. If you attempt to convert your existing PC to Linux, be patient and remember that some or much of the hardware was NOT designed to run with Linux and therefore problems are to be expected.

Better yet, but a new computer meant to run on and with Linux. One of the better offering is the Zareason either the Limbo 2550A ($299, will run Compiz, Beryl and other 3D desktop effects) [zareason.com] or the Breeze 3660 ($349) [zareason.com]

Once you go either Mac or Linux, you do NOT HAVE TO go back to MS. At least not if you are smart after learning about alternative software packages to do literally anything and everything you can do in a MS OS environment.

Expect a learning curve, just as you would with the new Microsoft operating system, nothing new there.

Are they vainly trying to staunch the flow of users away from Microsoft operating systems and applications to other alternatives? Especially considering the economy and the markets frustration with Vista and Windows 7.

Personally I was surprised they did not extend Windows 95 yet a second time. At least it would run on a netbook ($200 - $300 PC) with 512MB or less of RAM.

Perhaps they are planning a version of their new Windows OS that will run adequately in 512 MB of RAM and therefore on netbooks

Crap (4, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891937)

Article says that they "use open source". Doesn't mean they give ANYTHING back at all, because they are not distributing it, thus the HEADLINE is so false it's unbelievable.

For instance, say they took even a GPL'd piece of software, extended it to add marvellous and important new features and then KEPT IT IN HOUSE. They can still use it, still claim it's "open source" but they NEVER have to let anyone but themselves see that code.

It's bad editing, bad reviewing, bad summarising and just outright lying. There is nothing "Open" about anything being done here apart from the software that MS chose to use.

Re:Crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27891967)

http://hbase.org/

Is what the article is referring to, it's an ASF project, licensed under standard ASF terms.

Re:Crap (4, Informative)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892043)

They did: they gave to the Hadoop project an open source equivalent to Google's BigTable. Not only was this mentioned in the article, it was also mentioned in the summary.

Note also that while Google has a bigTable, they have not released it as open source (as far as I can tell, but they do sell it as a webservice). So there may be some desire to undercut Google here with this move.

Re:Crap (0, Redundant)

Vertana (1094987) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892651)

Nowhere in that summary does the word Hadoop appear.

Re:Crap (2, Funny)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892761)

Indeed, this is so clear that one could reasonably assume I was not suggesting that they used the word 'Hadoop' in the summary. In fact, your assumption in such a case would be correct: I was not actually implying that they used the word Hadoop in the summary. I WAS however implying that Microsoft did release open source software, which was mentioned in the summary. My second sentence was referring to the primary clause of my first sentence.

My post was accurate in this case, but I admit sometimes they are not. In general it's a good idea to assume the best possibly meaning from another person's post, and if at all possible not assume they are a complete idiot. That way even if you are wrong (and they are a complete idiot), at least you can still have half a good discussion. As opposed to this case you've wasted your words discussing something that isn't particularly interesting or relevant.

This ought to be the first rule of internet discussions since 90% of the people you meet online are, certifiably, idiots.

Re:Crap (4, Insightful)

mc1138 (718275) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892169)

Looking at Microsoft's history, I could see them releasing it, making it freely available, just to take a little bit away from Google. The animosity between Microsoft and Google isn't exactly a secret, and neither is Microsoft's do anything to win attitude. Case in point, look at how they've handled piracy overseas. Rather than crack down, they've been lenient to help keep their market share up. Better Window's for free than no Windows at all... I could see them going totally open source if they thought it would improve their hold on the market or at least hurt some competitors.

Re:Crap (5, Informative)

bockelboy (824282) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892217)

Actually, you're not even close.

A company called Powerset developed the open-source alternative to BigTable called HBase. This was developed as an Apache Software Foundation project under the Apache license.

Microsoft bought Powerset for a bucket of money because their search technology based of Hbase was pretty damned good. This was last year. This year, the folks behind powerset - as Microsoft employees - were given the go-ahead to continue committing to the ASF project and they continue to make it better. For what I can see, they aren't keeping anything juicy in-house.

It's honest-to-goodness MS committing to an Apache project.

Re:Crap (0)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892307)

That reminds me of Hong Kong. When it was british ruled, it was a capitalistic oasis. When china took it over, they kept some of the capitalism, but there was no change elsewhere.

Re:Crap (2, Informative)

ruphus13 (890164) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892251)

This came about as a result of their acquisition of Powerset. Those guys have been working on Hadoop, and contributing back for a while (pretty much since the beginning). Here's what the linked article in the OP [theregister.co.uk] states, "When Microsoft acquired the company, Powersetters Michael Stack and Jim Kellerman took a hiatus from their full-time HBase contributions. But by October, Redmond had cleared the pair to resume their open coding. And that's what we'd call giving yourself cancer. "While Microsoft has supported open source in the past," a company mouthpiece tells us, "this is the first time that Microsoft has continued to support open source with an acquired company."" So, rather than release their entire effort as Open Source, the participants in Kumo/Powerset will continue to work on Open Source projects and software they embed.

so what's the license? (2)

Punto (100573) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891965)

is it mentioned anywhere? I can't find it.

Re:so what's the license? (1)

Q-Hack! (37846) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891989)

is it mentioned anywhere? I can't find it.

I was wondering the same thing. If it is just the standard MS open development model, then it is not really news. GPL on the otherhand...

Re:so what's the license? (3, Insightful)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892361)

It's apache, which is more free than GPL.

Re:so what's the license? (2, Insightful)

wrook (134116) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893861)

It's apache, which is more free than GPL.

While this is an informative post, modding it insightful is a bit trollish. If your definition of "free" means "less restricted", then it is certainly true. If your definition of "free" refers to the "free" as commonly used in "free software", then the statement is meaningless. Either it is free (gives me the 4 freedoms) or it isn't. There isn't "more" or "less".

By saying it is "more free than the GPL" you are making a distinction which is completely unnecessary in this context. The Apache license is both free as in "has few restrictions" and free as in "free software". So you can merely say that the Apache license is a "free license" as opposed to Microsoft's "shared source" licenses.

I, for one, am getting tired of these pointless political jabs.

More Or Less (2, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893875)

It's apache, which is more free than GPL.

More free if you want companies to be able to use the software without giving anything back to you.

Less free if you want changes to always be public for everyone forever.

I'm all for BSD style licenses in some cases that allow a company to use code without contributing changes back to anyone. But do not redefine what "free" really means just because you have an irrational fear of prophetic guys with beards.

Otherwise you are missing the whole point behind open source software, which is that the source in in fact open. Allowing some changes to exist behind locked gates is in fact less free no matter how you weasel it.

Re:so what's the license? (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892373)

"... the available Hadoop technology, Powerset decided to give back to the community by developing an open-source analog to BigTable that is built on top of HDFS (Hadoop Distributed File System)."
Since Hadoop is Apache License 2.0, presumably this extension is so too.

It is called HBase according to the cited release post [powerset.com] .

Wiki:
http://wiki.apache.org/hadoop/Hbase [apache.org]
Yahoo and Adobe seem to run it too (see PoweredBy).

Project website:
http://hadoop.apache.org/hbase/ [apache.org]

Looking inside the last release tarball, it really is Apache License Version 2.0.

.Net? (1)

Parker Lewis (999165) | more than 5 years ago | (#27891993)

Will be it attached to .Net? Probably, right?

Meanwhile, the Big Table has python and java (or any JVM variant) as languages.

And how open-source the MS Big Table will be? You can download it and use in your cluster or single PC?

Re:.Net? (3, Insightful)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892199)

Will be it attached to .Net? Probably, right?

Java more likely (since it's built on Hadoop, which uses Java).

Slighty embarrassing for microsoft, perhaps? But remember, this comes from a group that microsoft acquired, not something that has always been a part of microsoft.

Re:.Net? (2, Informative)

perryizgr8 (1370173) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893011)

And how open-source the MS Big Table will be? You can download it and use in your cluster or single PC?

apache license 2.0
imo better than gpl.

Re:.Net? (1)

Parker Lewis (999165) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893037)

I agree.

did they use hot chicks to promote it? (2, Funny)

ifeelswine (1546221) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892053)

i just wonder if they're as desperate as the couchdb bozos: http://www.slideshare.net/mattetti/couchdb-perform-like-a-pr0n-star [slideshare.net]

Re:did they use hot chicks to promote it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892145)

Rails is a Ghetto, man.

Re:did they use hot chicks to promote it? (2, Informative)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892273)

Matt Aimonetti is a Ruby on Rails bozo:

http://merbist.com/about/ [merbist.com]

He doesn't seem to be particularly involved with CouchDB:

http://couchdb.apache.org/community/committers.html [apache.org]

I guess he was presenting information about CouchDB to the ruby community.

Re:did they use hot chicks to promote it? (2, Insightful)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892385)

when to use couch?

when availability is more important than consistency

I think I'd rather not subscribe to that newsletter.

no surprise (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892069)

Clearly Microsoft is using open source as a tactical weapon here, the way companies often do against entrenched competitors.

But is this a new tactic for them? No. Back in the '90s, they competed against Netscape in the browser wars by giving away IE for free; unlike Netscape, which was hoping to eventually start charging for Navigator, Microsoft made IE part of Windows (so it was effectively free for anyone who already paid for the PC).

And Microsoft released an "Open Letter to Netscape", asking its rival to cooperate with the W3C and avoid making proprietary extensions to web protocols. As if anything else about Windows desktop development at the time was based on open standards!

Going back even further, at one point Borland International was the leading PC software tools vendor. Microsoft wanted this title for itself (remember "developers developers developers developers"), so to compete against Borland's Object Windows C++ framework, they came up with MFC. And following Borland's lead, they made MFC open source (or "shared source" or whatever. Source available).

So no, they aren't having a change of heart. They will do whatever it takes to get control of this hot market segment.

Re:no surprise (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27893015)

please mod parent up!!

Re:no surprise (1)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893025)

> Back in the '90s, they competed against Netscape in the browser wars by giving away IE for free; unlike Netscape, which was hoping to eventually start charging for Navigator, Microsoft made IE part of Windows (so it was effectively free for anyone who already paid for the PC).

Why wasn't Microsoft charged for "product dumping" ?

Lets see (3, Informative)

codepunk (167897) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892099)

100 bucks a copy for os licenses x 50K boxes...hmmmm no thanks..

Money? (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892109)

> ...Microsoft's fear-mongering around open source cost it years of productivity and
> quality gains that it could have been delivering to customers through open source.

Yes, but did it cost Microsoft any *money*?

Re:Money? (1, Informative)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893229)

Yes, but did it cost Microsoft any *money*?

Vista. It cost MS its reputation. Before then, MS, in the non-tech world was considered pretty decent. Sure, XP was as insecure as heck, froze up randomly, etc. But it was decent enough. Then came Vista. By being totally committed to proprietary designs, MS managed to release a train wreck which cost them customers, their reputation, and many man-hours on the redoing of Vista.

Just look at what Apple did with OS X. They took an open source foundation (BSD), added a nice GUI, some compatibility, and they got a pretty decent OS once they worked out a few issues. All this for a much lower cost then developing a new beginning for Mac OS 9 totally in-house.

Re:Money? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27893807)

Sure, XP was as insecure as heck, froze up randomly, etc.

No it didn't. Before then, MS, in the non-tech (and tech world) was considered the standard, and still is.

I'm familiar with the situation (2, Funny)

melted (227442) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892133)

And I can tell you that the entire original Register article was pulled out of author's ass. The CNet article just extended that ass pulling, Goatse style. Must be a slow news day. None of this will ever end up in Live Search. Nothing to see here, move on.

Try the Powerset demo, compare it to even current Live Search or Google. Realize that this is just Wikipedia they've managed to index, even at that quality. Scratch your head and wonder why Microsoft paid $100M for it.

HBase isn't a Microsoft product (5, Informative)

bryanduxbury (1235994) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892147)

This article is really confused. Powerset, before it was acquired by Microsoft, started work on HBase, which is a BigTable-like storage system that runs on Hadoop. Both HBase and Hadoop are Apache projects that are out in the open basically in no relation to Microsoft.

Microsoft has allowed two of the primary HBase developers, who work at Powerset, to continue their open-source work on HBase, which is definitely cool. But to say that Microsoft is releasing this is just flat out wrong.

(Full disclosure: I am a non-Microsoft-employed HBase committer.)

Reign of ignorance? (3, Funny)

Nick Ives (317) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892155)

I hope that reign of ignorance is over.

Lets see... Nope, Ballmer is still in charge!

HBase / Powerset (1)

SuperQ (431) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892187)

So completely missing from article summary and article itself is any information about the software.

This guy is just late to the party. HBase was contributed to the hadoop project by Powerset. A startup that microsoft bought.

Probably HBase (2, Insightful)

allenw (33234) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892195)

None of the articles say it, but they are probably talking about HBase [apache.org] . If this is the case, this is seriously old news.

HBase was started by the Powerset guys before being acquired by Microsoft. After the acquisition there was a lot of concern in the Hadoop community about whether the Powerset guys would be allowed to continue to contribute. They have, and as far as I can tell, the community is not particularly concerned about MS's involvement.

Releases? (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892243)

A fast reading got me confused about that terminology. Lets see:
- Last july Microsoft bought Powerset, that were developing what would be the base of a semantic search engine.
- That company (before all of that) used Hadoop, and helped to build over it a BigTable-like distributed storage engine, called HBase.
- And in last october (thats Microsoft contribution to open source) Microsoft enabled the Powerset's developers that were contributing to HBase to continue their work there.

They aren't releasing any "new" open souce, just some of the new employees keep contributing to a project they helped to start when they weren't inside Microsoft. What they will be releasing (not as source, only as service) a new search engine based on that work.

Re:Releases? (1)

melted (227442) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892401)

>> a new search engine based on that work

Thas was made up by The Reg and regurgitated by CNet. Kumo is NOT "based on that work".

!YOU FAIL IT! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892249)

gloves, condoms = 1440 NETBSD morning. Now I have prima donnas to distribution make That they can hold distributions OUTER SPACE THE the NetBSD project,

Matt Asay (0, Offtopic)

Inquisitor911 (935895) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892449)

Every time I see Matt Asay's name mentioned in article summaries here on /., I'm shocked for a moment, because I have an uncle with that name.

Re:Matt Asay (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893395)

Let me guess... same reaction every time you see goatse?

Re:Matt Asay (1)

Inquisitor911 (935895) | more than 5 years ago | (#27894077)

Similar, only without the need to vomit afterwards.

disappointed (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27892475)

i thought microsoft could do better than this. open source is for total fags.

why do u think MS cares about quality ? (1)

cinnamon colbert (732724) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892789)

they are a business, they care about profit.
the great thing about being a monopoly is, you don't have to ship quality products - your customers can have whatever they want so long as it's black.
seriously, if you are a de facto monopoly, as ms has been for the last, say 20 years, and you make 50 % gross margins , why on earth would you spend money on quality ?
that sort of thinking is what seperates techies, who toil in the trenches, from c suite execs

Re:why do u think MS cares about quality ? (1)

CodingHero (1545185) | more than 5 years ago | (#27892961)

they are a business, they care about profit.

It's true. Look at those people at Apple turning out trash and naming their own price because there are no competitors! Oh wait . . .

Re:why do u think MS cares about quality ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27893465)

No "oh wait", no irony. Apple *is* selling overpriced trash.

Re:why do u think MS cares about quality ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27894257)

Whatever happened to the meme that Apple's computers were exactly the same as everybody else's since they were made in the same Chinese factories?
Kinda hard to have "closed architecture" and "trash" in the same camp as "same as everyone else's".

It's NOT open source. MODS please change topic. (0, Troll)

gavron (1300111) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893371)

The referenced software isn't licensed under an open-source license.

Microsoft doesn't produce software. Never has. They buy companies that do, they kill companies that do. They buy software that is. They kill software that is. They're still working hard to make sure their OS is compatible with Windows For Workgroups and Botnets For Losers.

Microsoft is a software developer like Vince Shlomi is a ShamWow inventor.

E

Re:It's NOT open source. MODS please change topic. (1)

DaMattster (977781) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893493)

That and much of their software has come from their efforts at "embrace, extend, close, and patent."

Re:It's NOT open source. MODS please change topic. (1)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 5 years ago | (#27893781)

Microsoft doesn't produce software. Never has.

You subscribe to definitions of "doesn't" and "never" that are somewhat less than strict, huh?

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