Ruminations on the Digital Realm

Jan Stedehouder

I'm an {open source} hero

Originally on Content Only! 26 April 2007

At least, that is what Microsoft is trying to tell me. Some time ago, the company that used to call open source something nasty launched it’s {Open Source} Heroes website. You may call it part of a wider strategy to provide a place for developers who warm up to open source, but wish to stay within the known boundaries of Windows. Port25 and Codeplex are two other ‘must register’ sites for WOSS developers (WOSS = Windows Open Source Software).

What does a {WOSS} Hero need to conquer the Windows desktop? Of course, your own Hero Hack Pack. Being curious by nature I requested one and received it two days ago.

You’ve got to grant Microsoft one thing: the company knows how to get marketing right. And they learn quickly. The package is a large 30 x 15 cm (something like that) folder with Chris Travers on the cover (who appears to do a lot on Open Source Interoperability) ready to start skying in a great vista (pun intended) with snow covered mountains. As the lingo says: “Now that’s a hero”. (he also tends his 30+ heirloom rose garden).

Inside it contains all I need to get started with Open Source and Microsoft technology: (1) A 90-day evalution version of Visual Studio 2008 Professional Edition and (2) A “up to 120-Day Evalution” of Windows Server 2008. Wow! That is a full 60 day less I got with the trial edition of Windows Server 2003 (and inside it says 30 days to start with, after which you need to request an extension). Microsoft must be loosing money. When the trial period ends: “Your trial software will cease to function and you may uninstall it.”

Do you, as an aspiring {WOSS} Hero feel warm and and fuzzy inside? Are you now ready to finally get rid of your free and open source desktop, developing tools and brethren in the open community to join the ranks of Rocketman, Flash Gordon, Superman and above all, Captain America?

{WOSS} Hero, the champion of the Windows desktop.
Neither free nor cheap.

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