[nycbug-talk] Re: BSD Success Stories (fwd)

Dru dlavigne6
Fri Sep 24 07:22:52 EDT 2004

Hi guys,

I've got lots to say but can only address a few points before heading out 
to work. More later.

> I happily disagree completely with the word 'fraction', so far as web hosting 
> and servers go- (the desktop is another thing altogether).
> So, for this survey, (which is arguably a survey that really matters) the 
> BSD's are not represented as a fraction at all- and end up representing 
> pretty hardcore in the top half of that list, when viewed according to 
> performance.
> I don't know why people buy less BSD books- there may be a lack of advocacy 
> out there, but to be really honest- does anyone in the BSD's really care 
> about the BS that comes with fame?
> For example, who really wants someone writing some lame article about the 
> BSD's in eWeek or that ilk?
> (I'm referencing the thread from a few days ago, 
> http://lists.nycbug.org/pipermail/talk/2004-September/002647.html )
> IT managers and CIO's read that stuff, not tech books.  Do we want to get 
> before their eyes in that context?  Is that really best for the BSD's?  It 
> sure would bolster 'real world' business support... but at what cost to what 
> drives the BSD's?

All of these points are related and the key word is "perception". We're 
techies and are concerned with quality. We're often asked for our input 
but we're rarely the decision makers. We're rarely the fly on the wall 
when the marketing machine comes knocking at our place of work and the 
deals are made regarding how the IT budget is spent.

That above article (which I've been chewing my lip on all week because I 
haven't had time to join the discussion) is "exposure". All of those 
little mis-informations add up to "perception". When they're not rebutted 
(keeping in mind that rebuttals tend to be one-liners buried somewhere in 
the mag), they're the only perception that gets out there. That perception 
is seen by our bosses and by non-users in general. And it's a vicious 
cycle which feeds on itself.

Here's a smattering of _one week's_ perceptions I've had personal contact 

"There's actually drivers available for BSD? I thought hardware support was
non-existent." "There's actually software for BSD? How hard is it to 
install?" "What do you mean there's NO certifications for BSD? Every 
company and his dog has a certification."

I'll say much more on that last point this weekend. While the BSD 
community has been arguing the merits of certification the big companies 
have been creating a "value" structure with certs. As techies, we 
smirk at that worthless piece of paper. As businessmen we should realize 
that they really mean value as in dollars. Example: Cisco, MS, et al give
sizable discounts on their support _if_ x number of employees are certified.
Entire spending policies are written around this business fact.

And the vicious cycle? We don't have as many drivers because we don't have 
the user base. We don't have the user base because of out-dated 
perceptions. And the perceptions that are true aren't being addressed.

I'm off to work.


>>> I can only speak for myself so I went through my book receipts for this 
>>> year. I've bought 8
>>>  tech books, none of them BSD. (If I don't count the Annaliese Anderson 
>>> one I've promised to buy for a former student but haven't had the time to 
>>> order yet). So this weekend I'm going to order Greg
>>> Lehey's latest to replace my well-thumbed 1st edition as well as 
>>> McKusick's latest.
> I agree, as this may have to do with things like INSANELY GREAT MAN PAGES, 
> and projects like the FreeBSD Handbook.
>>> ,
>>> On a related, it's been a long week, topic, I had lunch with some execs of 
>>> a fortune 500 company today. (I've had an ongoing contract teaching their 
>>> employees Linux+.) Of course, BSD always comes up in class. Not just 
>>> because of yours truly, but because the students are current BSD admins 
>>> whose company's product line is migrating from FreeBSD 3.x to Redhat 9. 
>>> Many of the employees requested that the company pay for a FreeBSD course. 
>>> The execs were willing and wanted to know the name of the BSD 
>>> certifications that were available. Their training budget is related to 
>>> certifications: no certification, no training money...
>> Right. . .I do think it's worth creating a NYCBUG mailing list on the topic 
>> of a BSD certification.  Certainly BSD Mall is in a good position to 
>> sponsor, as they have a respected name in the community.  We can get a list 
>> of necessities for a certification brewed up through a dedicated mailing 
>> list.
> If there's interest in this, that's great- but I for one have had to work 
> with way too many techs with excellent certs, who didn't know a nic from 
> their ear.
> I'll leave it at that.
>>> O'Reilly's response and this company's response should be a very big 
>>> wakeup call to anyone interested in BSD. I won't be posting to advocacy 
>>> until my double-shifts are over next Thursday. I need time to think and 
>>> rest so I won't be overly irritated when that advocacy thread fizzles into 
>>> nothingness.
>> understandable. . .particularly for someone who can quickly find out the 
>> books they purchased in the last year. . .
>> <g>
>> <snip>
> Rocket-
> .ike
> --
> P.S. My email address has changed with the incorporation of my business, 
> though structuredsystems email will continue to reach me.  I can now be 
> reached at:
> isaac at diversaform.com
> http://diversaform.com

More information about the talk mailing list