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Doug's Mailbag: Politics and IT Don't Mix, More

A few more readers echoed Jim's sentiment regarding comments with a political bent:

While I may not like Ann Coulter any more than you, I don't feel that the political chiding has any place in these IT articles. I've seen you make similar comments in past articles and it's difficult to overlook. I really enjoy my Redmond magazine and Visual Studio Magazine subscriptions, but these types of comments are really starting to turn me off of these publications.

I mean nothing personal, but it would be nice to see you use a small degree of professionalism -- as I know you're capable of from past articles -- and refrain from the political commentary.

Your political comments are out of place in this newsletter.

Reader count: minus one (hopefully more).

Doug asked readers this week if they thought Microsoft had any open source credibility. Marc says no, but that's OK:

To the open source zealots? No! Nor is there ANYTHING that Microsoft can do to win over these folks. That said, all one has to do is look at the number of open source applications -- especially in academia -- that are NOT ported to Windows (even if it has UNIX/GNU/Linux roots) to understand that it really doesn't matter what the zealots think. The point is that open source ISVs are no different than any other software developer. They will write code for whatever platform their users want to use. As long as Windows is the overwhelming choice of users, it will also be the overwhelming choice of open source developers.

The zealots would prefer that we only think about the GPL when we talk about open source, but there are a number of open source licenses out there and there is a lot of public domain code and "closed source" code available at no charge, as well. Microsoft's reticence to work with GPL is understandable since GPL 3 proponents don't even want GPL code running under Windows. Well, too bad. There needs to be room for all and Microsoft's decision to invite all open source developers to the table (while also self-serving) is a smart one.

A few weeks ago, Doug asked readers to share their worst hacker story. Rich's story probably wouldn't qualify for the "worst," but if you're a Yankee fan, it's probably up there:

Neither I nor my company has ever been hacked, but I do recall the N.Y. Yankees' Web site being compromised after the Yanks beat the Mets in the 2000 World Series. The very next morning after Game 6 (around 8:30), I went to their Web site and was greeted with a picture of...hmm, how shall I say? Let's put it this way: It was a very "up close and personal" shot of some place on the human body where the sun does not shine. It was up for maybe 10 to 15 minutes before the site suddenly became "unavailable." I haven't heard or read anything about it since.

Since you're from Massachusetts, I wouldn't be surprised if you are smiling right now.


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Posted by Doug Barney on 09/16/2009 at 1:17 PM


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