LIS-3353 - Software

History and Software

Some big ideas

..YMMV

The Ticker Tape Theme

Human communication? NO. DATA.

(there are a LOT of ways to express this)

A L'IL ECON

The marginal cost of software (and anything else "digital") is zero,
and economics (for better or worse) tells us that its real price will approach zero.

A reasonable idea

If software is infinitely reproduceable and can be shared everywhere for free;
then no piece of software should *ever* be rewritten;
and everyone should always have the best one.

A reasonable idea THAT DEFINITELY DID NOT HAPPEN

If software is infinitely reproduceable and can be shared everywhere for free;
then no piece of software should *ever* be rewritten;
and everyone should always have the best one.

Instead?

A lot of people are sharing and that is awesome...but also
to figure out how things are going,

consider software more as a free resource, not so much a product

NNT's "Lindy"

A good predictor of how long something will be around in the future..
... is how long it has been around in the past

Evolution

Individual pieces of software are sometimes intelligently designed...
...but the ecosystem is DEFINITELY evolution.

(i.e., a lot makes no sense

See also luggage wheels aka)

Luggage wheels.

Y'all.

We put a man on the moon before we put wheels on luggage.
ARE YOU SERIOUS.

LAW

yeah, if that existed on the internet that'd be nice

JOKING SORT OF (I take this seriously in Info Policy?)

Digging deep into the web

You find two things:
Free and Open Source software (esp Linux)
AND
Text

(these two things are STRONGLY related)

The Prof's Million Foot View

1) More open generally wins in the long run
2) Piracy? Meh

Innovation


Apple? IBM? MS?

Innovation

Nah, Xerox.

Innovation

“You’re ripping us off!” Steve Jobs shouted. “I trusted you, and now you’re stealing from us!” Gates just sat there coolly, looking Steve in the eye….

“Well, Steve, I think there’s more than one way of looking at it. I think it’s more like we both had this rich neighbor named Xerox and I broke into his house to steal the TV set and found out that you had already stolen it.”

The First PCs

Pioneers of Freedom?

Apple II/Macintosh series

Apple v. IBM (COMPATIBLE)

MS Windows v. OS/2

THE APPLE II SERIES

The Steve at Apple who REALLY mattered?

The First PCs, APPLE et al

Apple IIgs

The Dominance of Apple

(1977-1984ish)

Apple dominates.
Keeps EXCLUSIVE right to make
“Apple” Machines

ENTER IBM

ENTER IBM

Apple was winning, IBM was in confusion
(Classy, Steve)

IBM didn't want it at first

But through a series of fights, other companies got the *right*
to license IBM's Operating System to Other Manufacturers

Result? IBM DOMINATES

See ya later, Steve

Also: Steve Jobs is FIRED from Apple by John Sculley (1985) :
“Overpriced Mac is a toy, and dropping prices won't help”

IBM DOMINATES

And decides to make a new O/S

IBM Screws up. TWICE.

  1. Decides to completely ignore history...the new “OS/2” will be IBM ONLY.

  1. ... Hires this guy to write the thing...

IBM Screws up. Twice

Enter Bill Gates

(Also, makes the unfortunate mistake of keeping this guy around to write it, since his people wrote the old one. It was
”MS-DOS” after all.)

So they do both OS/2 and this other side project you may have heard of...

Bill's (not so) Evil Genius

"Letter to Hobbyists"

Letter to Hobbyists

Convinces developers
(and the world)

“SOFTWARE IS A PRODUCT”
(please appreciate how weird this is)

Letter to Hobbyists

Convinces developers
(and the world)

“SOFTWARE IS A PRODUCT”
(please appreciate how weird this is)

Is Math? is Science? Also?..

Letter to Hobbyists

How you gonna sell an OS
WITHOUT A COMPUTER? And Vice-Versa?

MICROSOFT WINDOWS

Standalone* office appliances running proprietary software.

*infrequently connected or networked.
“Sneakernet!”

The Dominance of MS

Probably not Windows the OS, but ...

The Dominance of MS

Probably not Windows the OS, but ...

How (not) to kill a giant

Direct competition?

They just buy you out, or EEE

Government Intervention?

It worked for AT&T, and it might work again, but not for MS

The original "Surface" (2003-2007)

The Microsoft Tablet (2002)

Embrace, Extend, Extinguish

(I didn't make this up, they used it INTERNALLY)
Either BUY OUT your competition, or E,E,E.
(e.g.)
.Net
ActiveX
DirectX vs. OpenGL
Attempted with odt.
This prevents you from having to competitively innovate.
(and is kind of understandable.)

Embrace, Extend, Extinguish

“ "One thing we have got to change in our strategy—allowing Office documents to be rendered very well by other peoples browsers is one of the most destructive things we could do to the company. We have to stop putting any effort into this and make sure that Office documents very well depends on PROPRIETARY IE capabilities. Anything else is suicide for our platform. This is a case where Office has to avoid doing something to destory [sic] Windows."

- Bill Gates, memo to Office working group, 1998

Ha, how do we even HAVE that memo?

Because of discovery, and the other thing

Not even the (U.S.) gov't.

United States v. Microsoft, 253 F.3d 34 (2001)(mostly over IE.)

Europe did, but without much consequence...except that you can legally now say "Convicted Monopolist, Microsoft"

Not even the (U.S.) gov't.

The argument:

Monopoly Leveraging – not that MS had an impermissible monopoly, but that it would use that monopoly to take over the internet, with that AMAZING browser….

Internet Explorer.

(ps, EU courts Europe basically won this same case, the crazy result being that when you installed Windows, over there you could pick a browser.
(instead of using IE to install Firefox like we did here)

Missed it...

"Sometimes we do get taken by surprise. For example, when the Internet came along, we had it as a fifth or sixth priority." - Bill Gates

Microsoft:

Home Computer as Household Appliance(running proprietary/closed source software)...

but what about those other big computers and networks and stuff...old school?

Wow, so how DO you kill a giant?

SLOWLY.

With The Internet
+
With Non Computer Devices

Both of which run on:
Free Software

Unix

Unix

The Unix Way

Recursion, again

mostly just to understand the goofy names, a way to do the robot
In computers, it's actually okay to define something with itself.

GNU(Gnu's Not Unix)

Richard Stallman, 1983ish
“complete Unix-compatible software system”

The GNU Manifesto → Golden Rule → GPL

But..no kernel...

Richard Stallman

Weird picky guy who says outrageous things about technology

Richard Stallman

Weird picky guy who says outrageous things about technology
THAT END UP BEING TRUE*

*definitely not an endorsement of his non-tech ideas

Richard Stallman

Weird picky guy who says outrageous things about technology
THAT END UP BEING TRUE

DON'T call it Linux. Call it GNU/Linux!!!

and

They're going to go into your home
and burn your books!!

Linux(Linux Is Not UniX)

..I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won't be big and professional like gnu..

Should we be using "GNU/Linux?"

“Sadly, a kernel by itself gets you nowhere”
- Linus Torvalds

GNU shells, compilers, userspace system tools, libraries. are added.

Also, most importantly:
GNU GPL is adopted for Linux

This slide is technically incorrect

but good enough for now..

Free Software / FOSS / FLOSS
Here's some code, do what you want, but please share back what you do.

Open Source
Here's some code, do whatever you want. (including lock it back down)

Unix Descendants

(aka, why am I talking about all this?)

LITERALLY LINUX:

e.g. Ubuntu, Mint, PopOs, Raspbian etc.
Windows Subsystem for Linux

Unix Descendants

(aka, why am I talking about all this?)

Super close ("Posix Compatible etc)

Unix Descendants

(aka, why am I talking about all this?)

EVERYTHING THAT ISNT WINDOWS*

Servers, the Cloud, the Web, whatever

Are MOST often running something that
- literally is Linux OR
- is at least Linux like

(you see this in things like URLS, email addresses, etc)

Unix Descendants

Why do LOTS of devices these days ship WITHOUT easy access to a file manager – if they have one at all?

Unix Descendants

Why do LOTS of devices these days ship WITHOUT easy access to a file manager – if they have one at all?
Because that's how they go into your home and burn your books, like I said.

If you can't get to your files

If you cant get to your files...

Open Source

A bit more complicated than one might think...

Free v. Open

Free software existed first.
"Free as in speech, not free as in beer."
Libre v. Gratis

Real hard to sell stuff when it's called "free"

So, "Open-Source" is adopted.
All free software is open source, but not all open source software is free (as in speech or otherwise)
And so, you get a pretty good mix....

Open (but not free) Source

You can do most anything with it, including lock it back down and making it unfree.
(BSD, Apache, anything MIT Licensed)

Free Software

You can do most anything with it yourself..
EXCEPT you may NOT re-release it closed.

GNU/Linux, Firefox etc.

THE DEVICES

OLPC

A failure, but a big deal anyway

PDAs (but this AND a phone?)

MP3 Players

Ipod

Blackberry

AKA THE LAST CELL PHONE MAKER EVER ☺

Nokia N900

iPhone

Darwin/POSIX Compliant (but basically closed)

Android

Linux Kernel , Weird OS

And here we are

Some Claim:

The OS wars are over, and Linux and "Open-source" won.

What is the internet made of, software-wise?

Historically?
Free and Open Source, overwhelmingly

Today?
Free and Open source, overwhelmingly,
but with weird business models...

But...

OKAY, what is LINUX exactly. An OS?

Yes, but — what is an OS?

Lots of different kinds of software at
different levels.

(Apple/Windows just squishes them all together)

A rough car analogy

Linux is a Kernel

A rough car analogy

GNU is..uh this other stuff i'm not a car guy

A rough car analogy

Distros are like Models/Makes

A rough car analogy

Window Managers or Desktop Environments are like the dash

For Comparison - Windows 7?

Win 10?

Os X?

Choices Choices Choices

Linux has MANY Different
Window Managers
used in even more different
Desktop Environments
which probably looks a lot like "different operating systems"

old KDE

Current KDE

Elementary

Raspberry Pi OS

Ubuntu

Fancy old Compiz Fanciness

OpenElec/Kodi

Kali Linux

Awesome

Evaluating Tools

Like I said, LINUX and TEXT.

But there's A LOT OF MONEY in between, aka PLATFORMS

Much more on this later

Also, "the cloud"

There is no cloud, it's just someone elses computer.

Almost *always* running Linux.

Web hosting, etc.

(e.g. the LAMP stack)

The other thing you find when you dig deep..

Relatedly:

TEXT.