26 January 2009

Creative destruction at work

The NYT has an interesting article about how the depression is driving trends in technology, including the adoption of netbooks, virtualization, and Linux. Netbooks are interesting and all, but I'm more fascinated by the software side of this.

Recessions "can cause people to think more about the effective use of their assets," said Craig R. Barrett, the retiring chairman of Intel.

If recessions are good for anything it's that they force us to use all our resources to the fullest and in the most efficient manner. And people are noticing that this is not really compatible with the idea of proprietary software, which basically represents starting with something infinitely malleable (software) and then crippling it in some manner that suits the vendor. Not so great.

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