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Good interview with Sam Hocevar, Debian Project Leader


I thank you for your thorough and well researched article on Debian's new
project leader, Sam Hocevar

Your phrase "at a time when Debian may be losing mindshare among both
users and developers to Ubuntu" leads to the false impression that
Debian was somehow bigger and more influential in the past.  I think
the evidence is very strong that, in fact, Debian has ascended to
become The most influential distribution.  The evidence starts with
Ubuntu: Bruce Perens set the goal for Debian to be The Universal OS.
Knoppix, Ubuntu, Linspire, Xandros and countless other distributions
may have more users than Debian, but are all descended from Debian.
Evidently, the Debian Universe breeds creative, successful progeny (how
many derivatives of OpenSUSE or Fedora are there?).  And remember apt?
Another shining example of Debian's mindshare:  it is even recommended
for Red Hat systems!!!

Certainly it is an interesting question:  what happens when the most
influential distribution gets partially eclipsed by one of its star
offspring (read: Ubuntu)?  Will Debian continue to be a prime mover in
the every evolving Linux distribution industry?  Only time will tell.

But Debian just put out its largest release ever:  18,733 packages
(vs. 15,490 in Sarge).  And this release was only a few months behind
schedule vs. Sarge which was over a year late.  Like a fine wine, Debian
seems to be getting better and better!

I'll leave it to a skilled journalist, such as yourself, to puzzle
out how to measure the "mindshare" and "influence" of the world's most
prolific and largest (in terms of number of packages if not contributors)
distribution.  But I think Debian deserves accolades for its amazing
success in demonstrating year after year for more than ten years the
type of software leadership that leads to other innovators like Ubuntu
to build their business on Debian's solid platform.  Wow, if that isn't
an amazing endorsement!!!

Am I not correct in realizing that the very evidence for Debian's "lost
mindshare" is in fact proof of its permeation and importance throughout
the industry?

Who will be the first journalist to investigate just how and why Debian's
model has succeeded so profoundly?  Why has Debian led to so many
successful kin such as Knoppix, Ubuntu, Linspire, Xandros and countless
other distributions?  What is Debian's secret?  Did Ubuntu acquire that
secret or is it just building success on top of Debian's mojo?

CJ Fearnley                 |   LinuxForce Inc.
cjf@LinuxForce.net          |   President & CEO
http://www.LinuxForce.net   |   Software & Web Solutions / Systems Management

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