The Free Standards Group: Squaring the Open Source/Open Standards Circle
As Andy himself summarised it in Slashdot:
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| Before there was Linux, before there was open source, there was of
| course (and still is) an operating system called Unix that was robust,
| stable and widely admired. It was also available under license to anyone
| that wanted to use it, and partly for that reason many variants grew up
| and lost interoperability - and the Unix wars began. Those wars helped
| Microsoft displace Unix with Windows NT, which steadily gained market
| share until Linux, a Unix clone, in turn began to supplant NT.
| Unfortunately, one of the very things that makes Linux powerful also
| makes it vulnerable to the same type of fragmentation that helped to
| doom Unix - the open source licenses under which Linux distributions
| are created and made available. Happily, there is a remedy to avoid
| the end that befell Unix, and that remedy is open standards -
| specifically, the Linux Standards Base (LSB). The LSB is now an
| ISO/IEC standard, and was created by the Free Standards Group.
| In a recent interview, the FSG's Executive Director, Jim Zemlin,
| and CTO, Ian Murdock, creator of Debian GNU/Linux, tell how the FSG
| works collaboratively with the open source community to support the
| continued progress of Linux and other key open source software, and
| ensure that end users do not suffer the same type of lock in that
| traps licensees of proprietary software products.