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Oracle Government Open Source

Oracle Attacks Open Source; Says Community-Developed Code Is Inferior 394

Posted by Soulskill
from the completely-unbiased-and-without-any-sort-of-agenda dept.
sfcrazy writes "Oracle has a love-hate relationship with open source technologies. In a whitepaper (PDF) for the Deparment of Defense, Oracle claims that TCO (total cost of ownership) goes up with the use of open source. They're essentially trying to build a case for the use of their own products within the government. 'The skill required to successfully and economically blend source code into a commercially viable product is relatively scarce. It should not be done directly at government expense.' Oracle also attacks the community-based development model, calling it more insecure than company developed products. 'Government-sponsored community development approaches to software creation lack the financial incentives of commercial companies to produce low-defect, well-documented code.'"
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Oracle Attacks Open Source; Says Community-Developed Code Is Inferior

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  • Prejudiced much? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by erroneus (253617) on Tuesday October 15, 2013 @03:00PM (#45135111) Homepage

    That is the most insulting demonstration of hubris from Oracle I have seen in a very long time.

  • by TopSpin (753) on Tuesday October 15, 2013 @03:47PM (#45135699) Journal

    wouldn't Java be a example of the contrary to this?

    Yes, but not the best one. The best would be Oracle's database. Despite the fact that Oracle Database Server is not the result of a 'community-based development model,' the product has a long, ugly history of vulnerabilities. For some reason it fails to be composed of 'low-defect code,' despite apparently having all the best financial incentives. The list of vulnerabilities [cvedetails.com] is long and grows regularly.

    The only reason Oracle Database Server has never been the victim of a SQL Slammer type exploit is that it is so expensive that most instances exist only well behind corporate and government firewalls that, if not well maintained, at least exist. Many SQL Server admins apparently don't believe in firewalls.

    However, [Solaris] is more of Sun's creation than Oracle's.

    Likewise with Java.

  • by Kjella (173770) on Tuesday October 15, 2013 @04:32PM (#45136289) Homepage

    There is masses of half-assed, broken, wretched and downright brain-damaged open source code out there, and anyone who claims otherwise doesn't know what they're talking about. Much of it is written as a quick and dirty hack to solve an individual's problem and then released, with scant regard to long term maintainability. Yes, there are some gems, but they are hidden amongst many many times more garbage. The good thing is you can fix it, if needed, and the software will evolve. But typically commercial software has gone through that process several times before it gets to market, because despite what people here may say about microsoft, not many people will pay good money for completely broken crap that doesn't work.

    Many companies have paid ridiculous amounts of money for code that doesn't work, particularly custom and semi-custom code. The NHS in the UK scrapped a >10 billion GBP - that's 16 billion USD - national healthcare system. Vertical integrators that have a stranglehold on certain professions are often full of horrible, horrible code. Insane amounts of spaghetti code have been made by cheap outsourcing companies to go into "commercial software". Closed source has its gems. Open source has its gems. But as a broad generalization it's the pot calling the kettle black, both have a huge spread. Often it's just good vs better or bad vs less mediocre and the question to pay or not depends on whether a $50k+ worker could be 1% more effective - that's $500 - with that tool or not.

    Personally I find there's a difference of layers, closed source software doesn't sell unless it looks good on the surface with user interface and hand-holding documentation, comes with buzzword compliance, feature checklists and fancy demos of the capabilities. Open source is more grab it, put it through its paces and see if it works for you. Doesn't have to be so pretty to look at, but be a solid workhorse with detailed technical documentation but often a high learning curve. It's usually more about manpower though than anything else, often you realize there's five open source developers trying to compete with a hundred closed source developers and it's not so much a better of the quality of the coders but simply about being outgunned.

  • Re:Prejudiced much? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by erroneus (253617) on Tuesday October 15, 2013 @04:53PM (#45136501) Homepage

    Oh, I have. Especially with GNOME and GiMP developers. Talk about failure to listen. The whole Linux community watched as XFree86 refused to listen and work with the communities. Eventually X.org was born and very quickly by any measure replaced XFree86 and rendered their stagnant asses irrelevant. GNOME, meanwhile, gets away with it because there's not yet enough original GNOME developers willing to pull away to spin off a fork... yet. In the mean time, we've got MATE and all that. And GiMP? Don't get me started.

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