I don’t want to even get into the whole IBM thing – enough other people have mentioned it without me fanning the flames. So here’s the way I tend to deal with FUD: any time you hear about that sort of stuff in the press, just ignore it. The perfect thing to do is to simply come back with a demo. Yes, it’s changing the subject a little – but that IBM fud was designed to make you concentrate on socio-political stuff, and distract you from the actual hold-it-in-your-hands operating system technology which you can now get for free [as in, um, whatever ]
When you’re talking to someone about OpenSolaris, nothing beats a sentence along the lines of “… Oh, and have you actually seen OpenSolaris running ? Here, let me show you…”, followed by a short whirlwind tour around SMF, DTrace, ZFS, Zones and anything else you feel you can cram in. People will quickly forget the verbiage that’s been bandied around in the press, and will actually concentrate on what matters.
Case in point: a year or so ago, we were in the reception of a hotel, at a wedding of some good friends of ours. The morning after the ceremony, a group of us were uploading photos from our various digital cameras onto our collected laptops, browsing each other’s photos. Someone looked over my shoulder and asked “What Linux distribution is that you’re using, Tim?”
Cue ad-hoc demo from me on my OpenSolaris-based laptop, followed by nice discussion of the merits of OpenSolaris – my audience cared about the technology, not the politics.
That’s all you need to do – OpenSolaris can pretty much demo itself – you just need to give it a helping hand: the DTrace Toolkit can assist, as does this script about ZFS, but nothing beats pure enthusiasm. Get out there, tell your friends and stop worrying about FUD – life’s too short.
ps. the last time I was ranting about the media, it was here – see you in another 12 months or so ;-)