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Interview with Havoc Pennington of Red Hat

michael posted more than 11 years ago | from the cry-havoc dept.

Red Hat Software 185

JigSaw writes "OSNews published an interview with Havoc Pennington, the head manager of Red Hat's Desktop department, also known for his freedesktop.org initiative and his very active/leading role in Gnome. Havoc discusses the internal changes on Red Hat, the future of the desktop version of Red Hat Linux, the XFree86 fork Xoutert, GTK+ and Gnome while he characteristically says regarding Linux eating UNIX's marketshare: '...nails are firmly in the UNIX coffin, and it's just a matter of time.'"

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hey (5, Informative)

Mohammed Al-Sahaf (665285) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962314)

Its Xouvert [xouvert.org] , not Xoutert.

You have brought it upon yourself! (0, Funny)

SMOC (703423) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962321)

You have criticized Michael Simms, prepare to be modded down.

Amazing! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962324)

An informative, on-topic first post!

Re:Amazing! (-1, Redundant)

minus9 (106327) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962389)

Even better, an informative on-topic and truthful first post from the Iraqi information minister.

Re:Amazing! (1)

Smoking (24594) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962496)

There has to be some trick...

Re:Amazing! (-1, Redundant)

Illbay (700081) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962575)

I just had a 'massage' from the Swedish Prime Minister.

Re:Amazing! (-1, Redundant)

Libor Vanek (248963) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962392)

Just imagine a beowulf of these...

Re:Amazing! (-1)

Amonynous Coward (705852) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962425)

Do you think this thing of karma whores profiting from articles typos in first posts is something new?

Re:hey (4, Informative)

oever (233119) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962454)

From the xouvert website:

What kind of a name is Xouvert?

Xouvert is named after the ancient Babylonian goddess of open windows, wooden digging implements, and moonlight. A notorious ritual among the higher levels of Freemasonry has kept her memory alive until now. Xouvert, awake!


Which is of course, complete bollocks. Xouvert is french for Xopen.

This reminds me... (5, Insightful)

PakProtector (115173) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962316)

...somewhat of the time I said DOS was dead, soon to be replaced by OS/2 Warp... ...Well, not quite. But isn't it premature to predict the death of such a venerable OS?

Re:This reminds me... (4, Insightful)

zakezuke (229119) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962375)

I must admit, i'm a little confused by this. You can say that MS-Dos is dead as no one is developing for it anymore. In fact the last DOS version i'm aware of was IBMs PC-dos 2000, which to be honest I never saw.

You could say that it was killed by the more advanced operating systems of last decade of the 10th century. This would be fair and reasonable.

But Unix being dead... that seems a bit of a leap. It seems to me that development for Linux is actually helpful in keeping Unix alive. There are still a vast number of applications distributed for specific flavors of unix that are offered in their binary form only, and OSS seems to be damn fucking useful in keeping these systems up to date and useable.

Re:This reminds me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962467)

In fact the last DOS version i'm aware of was IBMs PC-dos 2000, which to be honest I never saw.

Virtual PC 6 comes with a disc image which contains...PC DOS 2000. Seems quite odd to me but I guess they wanted something a user could try with a new installation...

Re:This reminds me... (3, Funny)

snake_dad (311844) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962469)

You could say that it was killed by the more advanced operating systems of last decade of the 10th century. This would be fair and reasonable.

DOS wasn't perfect, had issues with memory, very large filesystems were not supported, 1.0 did not even have directories and the available commands were a sorry bunch compared to unix, but to say that OS's from the Middle Ages were better is taking it a bit too far, IMHO.

Re:This reminds me... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962596)

the more advanced operating systems of last decade of the 10th century

Hell, I thought I was getting a bit long in the tooth, but I hadn't noticed missing over a thousand birthdays since the really modern OSs of the 1970s, but I guess living in a reverse time-warp can do that to you.

Pity it left me old and wrinkly, though... :-)

How can a prediction be premature? (2, Interesting)

Chuck Chunder (21021) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962483)

By definition a prediction has to be made before the event.

Nor does the statement "it's only a matter of time" seem that outlandish. Already we've seen Linux being adopted by major Unix vendors. It's not unlikely that it will continue to make inroads in core areas and gradually drive their traditional offerings to more "niche" areas which ultimatly may be too small to warrent the expense of maintaining a seperate offering.

http://www.freeesktop.org/? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962317)

Not to put to fine a point on it but your hyperlink is incorrect

http://www.freeesktop.org/

Re:http://www.freeesktop.org/? (-1, Redundant)

Tjebbe (36955) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962327)

(Use the Preview Button! Check those URLs!)

Re:http://www.freeesktop.org/? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962463)

Yours does not work either.

Re:http://www.freeesktop.org/? (2)

hatrisc (555862) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962508)

it may habe been nice to provide the correct link. http://www.freedesktop.org [freedesktop.org]

"Just a matter of time" (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962322)

Yeah. And someday the Earth will crash into the sun. But that doesn't mean that anybody alive today will give a rat's ass about it. What a meaningless, SCO-like statement.

UNIX is dying? (5, Insightful)

Dancin_Santa (265275) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962326)

I don't think you can seriously say that UNIX is dying and say that Linux is killing it. Linux IS UNIX.

Unless you are trying to say that commercial UNIX systems are losing ground to Linux, it simply doesn't make sense to make such a false distinction between UNIX and Linux. They are one and the same.

Re:UNIX is dying? (0, Funny)

popeyethesailor (325796) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962340)

Must have forgotten to add "SCO" in front ;)

Re:UNIX is dying? (2, Funny)

More Karma Than God (643953) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962479)

So is it SCO/Gnu/Linux or is it Gnu/SCO/Linux?

Re:You... (0)

botzi (673768) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962342)

such a false distinction between UNIX and Linux. They are one and the same.

....actually work for SCO, don't you?????

Re:UNIX is dying? (5, Funny)

Chris Sontag (684398) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962366)

He has it the wrong way round, my friend. Do not listen to the lies. Linux is like a snake we are going to cut into pieces. Unix will rise again! We will push those crooks, those mercenaries back into the swamp. They are retreating on all fronts. Their legal effort is a subject of laughter throughout the world.

Re:UNIX is dying? (3, Funny)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962367)

So what you're saying is: "Luke, I *am* your father."

"Nooooooooooooooooo!"

Re:UNIX is dying? (1, Insightful)

MoralHazard (447833) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962371)

Wha happen? You HAVE to be trolling. Come on--what?

Just because they both work with a BASH shell, they were both written in C, and they were both coded and championed by a geek clique don't make them both UNIX. Or are we going to say that BeOS is UNIX, too? Or how about Win2K with Cygwin? That looks a lot like UNIX, so it must be.

Can anyone believe this was at 5 (insightful)?

Re:UNIX is dying? (1, Funny)

Illbay (700081) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962591)

Wha happen?

Somebody set up us the bomb.

Re:UNIX is dying? (2, Interesting)

jhdsl (74051) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962705)

Linux smells like UNIX, so it *is* UNIX :-)

More points:
Linux uses the "everything is files" philosophy, Win2K does not, Cygwin does not.

Linux has all "traditional" UNIX API:s.

Internally in the kernel, Linux has a lot of "traditional" UNIX solutions, tty/ptys, serial ports, filesystem mounts, networking, etc. is very UNIX.

Most utilities are UNIX-utilitie (cu, ls, mount, etc.).

Sysadmin stuff is basically UNIX (/etc/init, runlevels, inittab, and more).

Linux is therefore much more UNIX than Cygwin, BeOS or anything from Microsoft.

It just feels like UNIX in a way that other OSes does not. It therefore *is* UNIX in my book.
Not trademark UNIX, the Open Group defines that, but neither is Cygwin, BeOS or Win2K.

Re:UNIX is dying? (1)

MoThugz (560556) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962391)

GNU Not Unix.

Re:UNIX is dying? (0)

SMOC (703423) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962422)

Yeah, but GNU's not Linux either, so what's your point?

Re:UNIX is dying? (2, Insightful)

godders (517242) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962588)

Well what's generally accepted as "Linux" these days is actually correctly referred to as GNU/Linux.

Nope Linux!=Unix (1)

linuxislandsucks (461335) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962631)

stopp blurting the flase SCO linux is unix arguemnt..

OpenGroup did not certify linux as a unix implementation thus your cliam is flae..

Re:UNIX is dying? (3, Interesting)

emil (695) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962715)

Just imagine for a moment what might happen if Sun released some version of the Solaris kernel under the GPL.

Solaris is far more scalable than Linux; Linux would begin bleeding enterprise market share, and would probably never recover. Solaris doesn't seem to scale down very well, so it is probable that Linux would retain its embedded systems market share.

The moment that Linux becomes a real threat to the software environment of an E15k, I have to believe that Sun will do whatever is necessary to protect this segment.

Of course, the sooner that Sun does this, the sooner that the question of enterprise Linux is put to rest. Sun is probably dragging its feet because they don't want to see Solaris running on the HP Superdome (especially since HP is killing their own UNIX and thereby depressing sales). They already have to contend with Solaris running on Fujitsu Primepower (which are arguably better machines than an E15k), but I am convinced that eventually, Sun will have to level the playing field by truly opening the Solaris source.

Re:UNIX is dying? (1)

DrWhizBang (5333) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962982)

I don't think you can seriously say that UNIX is dying and say that Linux is killing it. Linux IS UNIX.

McBride?!!! Wake up, McBride!!! I can't pass in my code in your handwriting, now can I? ...

Seriously though, linux is not unix. or at least. UNIX is the crufty old stuff that linux used to want to be like. Linux may look like UNIX in some ways, but it is not. It does it's own stuff now.

UNIX / LINUX (4, Insightful)

Manos Batsis (608014) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962336)

Geeeez, lets get some things even I know straight:
  • Linux is (in a way) derived from UNIX, so UNIX is not getting dead any time soon
  • Linux is not as mature as the UNIXes used in demanding production environments, so UNIX is not getting dead any time soon
  • UNIX is not getting dead any time soon

Re:UNIX / LINUX (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962344)

What is this "getting dead"? Do you mean dying?

Re:UNIX / LINUX (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962370)

I'm not sure I completely understand.

What you're trying to say is... UNIX is dead? right?

Re:UNIX / LINUX (1)

silas_moeckel (234313) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962489)

Here Here somebody that understands that Liux may be good but it missing a pile of features to make it realy work in single box no downtime for even scedualed maitnence production the nitch currently filled by Sun and IBM's AIX for the most part.

Re:UNIX / LINUX (0, Redundant)

Haeleth (414428) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962490)

Okay, but what about BSD? That's still dead, right? :p

Re:UNIX / LINUX (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962623)

However, the likelyhood of SCO surviving IBM's wrath is very slim, hypothetically if IBM gets the patents , rights, and so forth of UNIX, then I would think the first thing that they would do it take all the good UNIX stuff GPL it and put it into Linux.

What's that rumbling sound? (2, Funny)

BabyDave (575083) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962345)

Is it an earthquake? A herd of elephants?

No, it's all the SCO jokers, with their (+5, Funny)'s at the ready! Time to run for cover, guys!

Re:What's that rumbling sound? (0, Funny)

Chris Sontag (684398) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962356)

Sir, That joke is the Copyright and Intellectual Property of the Santa Cruz Operation. Please cease and desist.

Re:What's that rumbling sound? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962357)

and would you be a SCO meta-joker ? ;)

Re:What's that rumbling sound? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962448)

Man walks into a bar with SCO Unixware under one arm, and Redhat Linux in the other.... ...and to make a long story short the bartender said, "hey that's my anus".

Re:What's that rumbling sound? (1)

hype7 (239530) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962599)

Is it an earthquake? A herd of elephants?


No, it's all the SCO jokers, with their (+5, Funny)'s at the ready! Time to run for cover, guys!


Oh come on. The interview is with a guy named Havoc Pennington. I'm sure there'll be at least a few original (+5, Funny)'s in the stampede.

-- james

Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (2, Insightful)

MoralHazard (447833) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962351)

I really, really doubt that all of these efforts to push Linux onto the desktop will tend to attract more "developer"-type users, as opposed to more "user"-type users.

New developer-users make contributions, bug fixes, and give intelligent feedback on problems and solutions. Your secretary, on the other hand, will probably not be much use when it comes to putting out bug reports. So I'm not all that excited by Redhat's ever-onward desire to convert the masses. Actually, I'm a little bit DIS-excited.

Nobody hassles a thing when it's a fringe-user, ubergeek phenomenon. There's a reason why SCO is fucking around with Linux and not the BSDs--Linux is getting popular and widespread enough now that slimeballs like D and the boyz see opportunities to milk it. Sure, it's nice that IBM contributed all they did, but it wasn't a free ride.

(Not that the BSDs are dying, or anything--give them another couple of years, and maybe they'll get sued by a huge mulitnational... oh, wait.)

I'm NOT saying that it's a bad thing that more people use Linux, just that the next 10,000 users of RH's pre-packaged, duh-whats-a-compiler will be substantially less of a pure good thing for MY Linux experience than the the first 1,000 kernel contributors were. Even if nobody else whips out a lawsuit for a while (knock wood), the new luser influx will be at least temporarily troubling until people start getting up to speed. Go check out what's happened to the Samba listserv, if you don't know what I mean--I unsub'd entirely because of the 1:100 ratio of {sensible questions|useful answers} to droolers who can't find a fucking man page, let alone a step-by-step HOWTO.

I swear, if Redhat ever actually gets into the black, I'm switching to Apple, stat. Fuck market share--I want something where nobody will bother me with free tech support requests.

Re:You are wrong... (3, Insightful)

botzi (673768) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962384)

duh-whats-a-compiler will be substantially less of a pure good thing for MY Linux experience than the the first 1,000 kernel contributors were.

You forgot that the developers are those that give birth and educate, but it's the users that become close lifetime friends. The people who use a software(even on some profan level) certainly are not so useful for the products development as the programmers team, but are crucial to its survival. A product will die without its users and gaining a larger user DB can not be a bad thing.

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (2, Informative)

!the!bad!fish! (704825) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962405)

I swear, if Redhat ever actually gets into the black, I'm switching to Apple, stat. Fuck market share--I want something where nobody will bother me with free tech support requests.
Decembler 2002 - Red Hat has reported a profit using Generally Accepted Accounting Principles [com.com]

I recomend OpenVMS if you really don't want any bother.

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962407)

what is a "Decembler"?

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962442)

its a typo [google.co.uk]

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962612)

I recomend OpenVMS if you really don't want any bother

Or better still, MCP :-)

but ... I have a bad attitude. (1)

azaroth42 (458293) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962417)


So, uhh, you use an operating system based on how many people ask stupid questions about -applications which run on it-?

Just don't interact with people who ask 'stupid' questions. If you don't like the signal:noise ratio on a list, unsubscribe and look for a dev list.

That said, Linux is probably better without elitist jerks giving it a bad name anyway.

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962440)

Ever since the beginning of my puberty I had a thing for farting. The superb vision for me is to watch Courtney Love and Geri Halliwell at a lounge with a birthday cake on the floor. Courtney and Geri hike down their pants, turn their bare butts at the cake from approximately 2 inches each one from different side, then simultaneously "beat the drum" on the cake, trying to blow the candles, as if attempting to compete each against the other when it comes to smell, rancidity, loudness and how long the fart lasts. And they release their intestinal methane gas until the room is increasingly rendered unbearable to stay in. Then they yank a slice of the cake and shove it down my throat full of their fart-aroma.

Sicko (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962609)

Geri Halliwell and Courtney Love are rough, ugly slappers, nearly as bad as Madonna. Please.

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (5, Insightful)

Illbay (700081) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962606)

So I'm not all that excited by Redhat's ever-onward desire to convert the masses. Actually, I'm a little bit DIS-excited.

So in other words, "user"-users like me aren't really welcome when it comes to Linux, because we won't "make Linux better" through code-contribution and timely bug reports?

Um, may I ask what is the raison d'etre for any operating system?

Following your logic, no one but automobile designers should be allowed to drive automobiles.

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (2, Interesting)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962709)

Now these users may have already read the FAQ but because the FAQ is sometimes wrote by a elitest prick or someone who assumes too much, they are asking the question on the list. People should write documentation like they were writing it for someone who has never seen Linux before and not for someone who is in it everyday. PLUS,if it was not for people wanting to use Linux, you would not HAVE a Linux unless you want to depend on Debian unstable for production and I sure don't. If Red Hat, SuSE and Mandrake all die, then all that will be left is Debian and I am sure they won't have their new installer ready by then....of course I could be wrong and it may already be stable (the installer that is). Or if SCO has their way, we may have to wait for HURD to become stable (hah ahhahahahhahhhaaaaa!).

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (5, Insightful)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962777)

I'm NOT saying that it's a bad thing that more people use Linux, just that the next 10,000 users of RH's pre-packaged, duh-whats-a-compiler will be substantially less of a pure good thing for MY Linux experience than the the first 1,000 kernel contributors were

What an incredibly arrogant attitude. I am not a kernel hacker, and if I can avoid it, probably never will be. When I first started using Linux, I didn't know C, yet today I hack on Wine, which is used by a metric ton of people, and am busy writing and designing autopackage, which from the feedback we're getting seems to be something that people want. It'll make it easier for luser types to use Linux.

Oh, and guess what. I use Red Hat 9, because I prefer getting stuff done to dicking about with my WM configuration. So sue me.

By your logic, I should never have been allowed in, because these people might *gasp* hassle you for tech support.

Let me make you aware of something. If it weren't for those legions of "lusers" out there, buying their Dell PCs and surfing MSN with Internet Explorer, it's highly unlikely most of us could afford a PC at all. The only reason I can have my own computer is because I can put together a decent little box for less than 500, and the only reason I can do that is because economies of scale caused by mass market acceptance make it cheap for me.

If those people didn't use computers, there would be no mass market, no economies of scale, and I wouldn't have a computer at all! I'd never have been able to learn C, hack Wine or write my software.

So, feel free to spit and vilify people who don't match up to your supposed guru-ness (though I really doubt you are as good a developer as you think you are), I for one will continue to enjoy cheap hardware and free software, and I won't bitch when newbies ask me questions. That's fair game, in my books.

Re:Not that I have a bad attitude, but... (-1)

akpcep (659230) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962941)

Mod that shit right up, you sir have spoken sense.

Linux vs Unix (2, Interesting)

mantera (685223) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962386)


I think the momentum linux has over Unix is a matter of its GPL license, which makes it widely and freely available, and ensures a constant flux, NOT that it's technically superior. I think it's generally established that Solaris or FreeBSD for example, are technically superior to linux, however, both Sun's proprietary or BSD licenses are the detriments of those two Unices in the face of the Linux onslaught. (do you like how I used Unices as a plural to Unix? I do.)

Linux, ironically, now fits into the legendary "worse is better" more so than Unix does.

Re:Linux vs Unix (0)

gredman (665454) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962500)

both Sun's proprietary or BSD licenses are the detriments of those two Unices
what

Re:Linux vs Unix (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962574)

What about the BSD licensing makes FreeBSD less "widely and freely" available? It is the GPL, not the BSD license, which imposes strict restrictions of use. Therefore an OS like FreeBSD can find itself used in business environments without fear of reprisal. FreeBSD is significantly more free.

And for you GNUtards who are going to flame me with "GPL is more free because it gives the developers more rights," no it fucking doesn't. It takes away their rights to use the project as they see fit. BSD doesn't in any way remove that right. That's like saying that patents are more free because it gives the patent holders more rights.

Re:Linux vs Unix (1)

mantera (685223) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962783)

Yes; FreeBSD's license is more free than the GPL. There's no doubt about that.

However, the GPL somewhat ensures the exchange and flux of code; I would argue that it is the GPL that makes the difference in momentum betwee linux and BSD. With BSD, people can use it however they see fit, with linux, they're sorta obliged to contribute back modifications if they use it.

Re:Linux vs Unix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6963001)

As far as the "joe shmoe" end user is concerned he don't give a shit about the GPL because checking his email and writing documents is something that the GPL has no bearing on.

The GPL's purpose is to keep the code open. It keeps your code out of the hands of companies like Microsoft, if thats what you want. If you don't care where your code is going then choose the BSD license. The GPL is at one extreme, closed source is at the other, and the BSD is in the middle. Boy would that make a terrible threesome.

Re:Linux vs Unix (1)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 11 years ago | (#6963062)

I think it's generally established that Solaris or FreeBSD for example, are technically superior to linux, however,

No, they aren't. FreeBSD is not superior to Linux, even if FreeBSD advocates like to tell you so. Hell, if it was indeed superior to Linux, they could scrap Linux altogether, fork FreeBSD under the GPL, and build on that. FreeBSD just recently got SMP, for chrissakes. Constantly repeating the superiority of FreeBSD (which the advocates insist on doing) doesn't necessarily make it so.

And as far as Solaris goes, it's just a matter of time. One has to be pretty short sighted to expect Solaris to thrive in the future - already it is considered a "legacy" OS, to be replaced by a Linux/Windows box after a while.

Already slashdotted... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962387)

Anyone with a mirror?

Bad article style (-1, Offtopic)

BenjyD (316700) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962397)

Why is it that all interviews online are posted as question, answer, question, answer...

It's such a boring, lazy way of writing. Why not do what [guardian.co.uk] grown [guardian.co.uk] up journalists do [independent.co.uk] and actually write something?

Re:Bad article style (4, Interesting)

RobotRunAmok (595286) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962441)

Why is it that all interviews online are posted as question, answer, question, answer... Why not do what grown up journalists do and actually write something?

Because most online tech-site interviewers are *not* "grown up journalists," or even writers, and their operations are in fact run on shoe-string budgets which do not provide for in-person interviews. Consequently, when the interview is being conducted over the phone, through IM, or across several e-mail sessions, it's kinda tough to get a feel for what type of sofa upon which the interviewee is sitting.

Note, too, that most of the readers of tech-site interviews are not as discerning as you. They are looking for "news" or "answers" -- and quickly. No one browses OSNews in anticipation of savoring the linguistic bons mots of some proto-Hemingway.

Re:Bad article style (1)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962942)

Note, too, that most of the readers of tech-site interviews are not as discerning as you. They are looking for "news" or "answers" -- and quickly. No one browses OSNews in anticipation of savoring the linguistic bons mots of some proto-Hemingway.

Indeed. Q & A format is great, because it lets you absorb all the necessary information quickly, possibly skipping boring questions. Reading an interview where the interviewer tries to be creative, using phrases like "he said", is a drag.

Re:Bad article style (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6963096)

Ask a couple of questions...get a couple of answers...write it down.

As opposed to:
Ask a couple of questions...get a couple of answers...try to come up with as many ways as you have questions to say "he said"...write it down in a way that would make your reader want to claw their eyes out.

Heh (3, Funny)

arvindn (542080) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962400)


Verisign could have made a lot of money [slashdot.org] by redirecting http://www.freeesktop.org/ and http://www.xoutert.org/ to their own ad pages :-)

Re:Heh (-1, Offtopic)

DrWhizBang (5333) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962995)

Dude, I wish I had mod points for you...

Unix is dying (0)

Amonynous Coward (705852) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962416)

Doesn't this mean that Linux is dying too?

Gnome will kill Linux (5, Funny)

DrSkwid (118965) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962420)

Dan Egnor says it best :

Somewhere deep inside the secret headquarters of the RedHat/GNOME/Ximian/Mozilla Cabal, there's a hidden document with a list of everything in Unix you know and love, marked with a date for its final expurgation. I think 'ls' is slated to be finally replaced with a symlink to 'nautilus' in 2007. Except that symlinks will have been replaced by ".shortcut" files, which are interpreted by the Mono implementation of GNOME-VFS.

Luckily the spirit on Unix lives on [bell-labs.com] .

Havoc Pennington? (3, Funny)

JazFresh (146585) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962426)

It is me, or does that sound like the name of the next Bond villain?

Re:Havoc Pennington? (0)

SlamMan (221834) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962522)

Or else he's going to run around with the X-Men.

Not quite accurate.. (1)

floydman (179924) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962458)

"Unix is dying"...

He is partially right, the above post mentions that Linux is another Unix flavor, so Unix is not dting which is true...

Where i work, there are almost 24 AIX nodes (16 processors each), endless Solaris blade server.. and all of these are being replaced by Linux clusters. My team and i are responsible to get the app.'s on Unix to be up and running on the cluster... BOTTOM LINE he is partially right...but not quite

P.S. (-1, Offtopic)

mantera (685223) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962470)


Please enough with the signatures, "clippies", and links at the end of posts; They're distracting, enormously taxing on attention, irrelevant and useless to the topic discussed, and increasingly unfunny.

Please stop it, they're totally spoiling my Slashdot experience and i run a risk of losing interest in slashdot altogether thanks to them. I am also inclined to think negatively of people, and their opinions, whose signature/clippy/link at the end of post annoy me enormously.

Cool name (0)

Talence (4962) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962516)

Offtopic perhaps, but he has an interesting first name. I wonder how much he got teased with it in school.

Re:Cool name (2, Funny)

Wirr (157970) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962582)

I was thinking the same.
It's a bit like naming your son Warlock or Judas.
Possibly his parents were thinking of his adult sex life, like "Go force young beatiful girls and wreak Havoc".

I think this is my worst post ever.

Re:Cool name (0, Offtopic)

Spy Hunter (317220) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962796)

I think this is my worst post ever.

I concur.

Re:Cool name (2, Informative)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962950)

Actually his real first name is Robert, Havoc is his middle name (iirc). Nope, I dunno why he flipped it ;)

Re:Cool name (0, Offtopic)

DrWhizBang (5333) | more than 11 years ago | (#6963038)

I think this is my worst post ever.

No argument here.

Nail in the Unix coffin... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962523)

What an ignorant fool. But obviously, he's speaking for RH.

Havoc and Fascism (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962573)

Why weren't any of the really hard-hitting questions asked, like:

Why are you making Gnome suck by mandating that metacity be the default windo manager?

Why are you making Gnome suck by refusing the help of the community in fixing such obviously broken pieces of code such as metacity (seriously, look at the bugzilla entries for this thing to see how many applications break ONLY when run with metacity, and to see Havoc's "won't fix" attitude, because adding any code to metacity would be "crack")?

Why do *you* get to be the new Gnome dictator? Is it because Miguel is just too busy doing his caffeine-induced .NET dance?

Havoc Pennington has the right idea (3, Insightful)

connect4 (209782) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962587)

Desktop standards are critical to Linux achieving greater desktop market share.

ISP: Hello?

Mom & Dad: Hi, I can't connect. I'm having trouble getting the modem to dial . . .

ISP: Ok, whaddya got? A Mac? Some kind of windows?

Mom & Dad: Uh, yeah . . . it's a PC

ISP: Ok, click on "start" in the bottom left hand corner of the desktop . . . . .

Mom & Dad: Um . . . I can't see start, there's like a "red hat / footprint / dinosaur" in the "bottom left / bottom right corner.

ISP: OK, we only support mac and windows, right. Bye now.

-Click-

The issue in this example is that tech-savvy call centre staff with no more than thirty minutes training can be expected to support mac and windows dialups over the phone. But until the same can be done for Linux, ISPs (for example) will never support it. This is a big barrier to Linux take-up by "Mom & Dad" type users. Standardising (across distros) things like the location of the pppd configuration would allow (again, for the sake of this example) ISPs to provide quick training to staff on how to support Linux users.

Things like this are great for Linux penetration, 'cause when someone rings their ISP saying "My computer won't start up properly, it states that ntoskrnl is missing, and I don't have the CD or windows key", rather than saying "too bad call back when you have the CD", the ISP support staff can prod these "Mom & Dad" users in the direction of Linux. Not possible when the ISPs position is that Linux can't be supported and staff who try are wasting company time.

Re:Havoc Pennington has the right idea (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962608)

Mom & Dad were saying those lines together, in unison? What great parents...

Re:Havoc Pennington has the right idea (5, Insightful)

Azghoul (25786) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962626)

Not to pick on your nice thought, but if I put Linux on Mom & Dad's machine, you can be sure they'll be calling ME when something goes 'wrong', not the ISP.

In fact, if your parents don't call you already, even with their Windows questions, you must suck. Or be a bad child.

Excuse for a cool title (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962666)

Admit it, you like saying "Havoc Pennington"

Let's not wreak HAVOC!

OSNews, blah... (4, Informative)

vsync64 (155958) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962669)

While reading through the interview, I noticed such bizarre and nonsensical statements as:
Looking Red Hat's recent press releases and web site lately, it reveals a new, stronger effort to shift focus further into the Enterprise and leaving Red Hat Linux to the hands of the community for the home/desktop market while leaves a "hole" in the previous target of Red Hat at the "Corporate Desktop market".
At the end of the day, we have seen patents being so "duh, brain dead", that many have said that writing software is almost impossible anymore. What a solution for this issue OSS software should find, to ensure a future that is not striked by lawsuits left and right?
Once, you started a C++ wrapper for GTK+, but then the project got sterile.
Do you feel that Linux is replacing Unix slowly but steadily, or do they follow parallel and different directions in your opinion?
I said to myself, "This article must be by Eugenia Loli-Queru", looked to the byline, and lo and behold I was correct. The local rag [steamboatpilot.com] is more respectable, which is saying a lot, considering that they routinely misspell the names of cities in front page headlines and such. Even JeffK makes more sense than Eugenia.

Re:OSNews, blah... (1)

paranerd (672669) | more than 11 years ago | (#6963048)

I typically avoid OSNews because of the poor quality of their writing, but this article hit a new low. After struggling to understand Eurenia's first question I switched to reading Pennington's answers only.

I hope they standardize. (3, Insightful)

anonymous coword (615639) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962718)

Gnome and KDE can't merge, but they can unify some of their interfaces. Here, in my opinion is what they need to do, which don't appear to be on freedesk yet.
  • Ditch the Foot/K-gear and replace it with a standard menu button, something like start but better.
  • Unify font/color configuartion. So when I choose green with arial size 12 on KDE my gtk programs comply too.
  • Common shortcuts. For example, to open a tab on Konqueror you have to press ctrl+shift+n while mozilla and freinds use ctrl+t, Konqueror should switch to ctrl+t!
  • Standards for icons/emblems/backgrounds
  • Unified help/control system (man and /etc don't count), we need to be using gconf&scrollkeeper!
  • STANDRARD BUTTON ORDER! THIS THE MOST IMPORTANT! And make it easy to switch. People usually say yes or no! Not no or yes in real life.

Re:I hope they standardize. (1)

noselasd (594905) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962872)

www.freedesktop.org
Just remeber that standarization and unification like this does
not happen over night.

Re:I hope they standardize. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962896)

FreeDesktop the Havoc Pennington's VOICE. His domain, his webpage himself dictating standards.

Off-topic Trollish Comment (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6962812)

Can anyone on the OSNews staff write a grammatically correct sentence?

ED: Error in URL (0, Redundant)

mydigitalself (472203) | more than 11 years ago | (#6962842)

The freedesktop.org url you have is incorrect - it is pointing to freeesktop.org!
correct: click [freedesktop.org]

??? /. Reader in a /. manner ??? (1, Offtopic)

justsomebody (525308) | more than 11 years ago | (#6963059)

It's really dissapointing to see that
30% is commenting on guys name.
30% is commenting on grammar mistakes
10% is commenting on wrong hyperlinks
20% is commenting if Linux is UNIX or not
9% are trolls
1% actualy managed to stay on topic

My best guess is that all /. people that:
always bitch on how clipboard doesn't work
lack of 3D Desktop drawing and translucency
lack of KD, GNOME, X11 cooperation
no default printer interface
etc.

don'teven nearly realise that:

Havoc is one o the leading people on freedesktop.org, which should provide KDE-GNOME cooperation,

freedesktop.org and Xouvert cooperation would solve more than people would wnat (standard SVG library, standard clipboard, 3D desktop, standard printer interface),

that Xouvert should be fully transpaent to XFree, so exchange would be a piece of cake

By the way, he said one truly correct thing:
eople bitchin' about over such things are not developrs that contribute to either project, mostly those ones are users who preffer one interface over the other

Re:??? /. Reader in a /. manner ??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6963097)

I hate to bitch about grammar. But this article was almost unreadable it was so bad. Pennington is an important player, and what he has to say is important. He deserves better treatment than he got by OSNews.

Usability (1)

jensend (71114) | more than 11 years ago | (#6963065)

Havoc is an absolutely fantastic programmer. He's also, in my opinion, a spectacularly bad usability "expert". Ever since he got on his usability kick, the stuff he's programmed has become less and less usable in many respects.

I agree! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6963075)

....nuff said
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