making deals with M$

Markus Hitter mah at
Mon Jun 9 20:36:57 UTC 2008

Am 09.06.2008 um 21:40 schrieb Remco:
> How are their users going to learn about free file formats,
> and why it is important? For them it's not even important anymore,
> because they can play it anyway. This continues the ruling of the
> proprietary codec organizations.

While this problem ist hard to tackle for the reasons you wrote, at  
least one solution exists: open source software has to be better than  
proprietary software. "Better" means more attractive to the user,  
more attractive to the vendor (of audio, video,...).

If you look at GNU command line tools like ls, tar, ps, rsync,  
gzip, ... for all these the GNU version is the most often used  
version - likely because it's the most attractive choice. I consider  
Firefox 3 to be a sample in the GUI world and it's market share is  
impressive - considering almost every computer in the world is  
shipped with another browser.

Looking at Firefox or at Apple's iTunes, the solution to make people  
more aware of attractive, free software and/or formats is clearly to  
port it to the "foreign" OS - which is done often already.

Sure, such strategies become more difficult with the current  
direction Web 2.0 evolves - but not impossible at all.

As for the video format on canonical's site - it's pretty easy to  
offer a free format for Linux users while sending another format for  
other OSs/Browsers. This way Canonical would at least avoid being the  
culprit yet another user has installed a questionable codec.


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Dipl. Ing. Markus Hitter

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