Linux Foundation Corrects Schwartz on 'LAMP' Interpretation

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If you haven't seen it yet, Linux Foundation's marketing director, Amanda McPherson, took Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz to task over the weekend. First, she thinks the company's strategy to target Web 2.0 developers is simply "too little, too late." Second, she indicates that Schwartz is out of line to suggest that Sun isn't bound by the "L" in LAMP and would, in fact, substitute Solaris for Linux in the stack.


On the targeting of Web 2.0 developers, McPherson asks:

[W]hich and how many Web 2.0 developers? You mean the ones who are not on Linux? Unfortunately that doesn't leave very many. Facebook, Amazon's cloud computing initiatives, Google, YouTube, Flickr, Technorati, Wikipedia, Digg, del.icio.us all run on Linux. New developers are targeting Linux. Why? Cost, choice and talent pool.

She goes on to point out that a majority of Sun's x86 sales are Linux rather than any version of Solaris.


As for substituting Solaris for Linux in the LAMP stack, she says:

Sun can certainly substitute Solaris for Linux in the stack, but I'm not sure many customers will. (Customers tend to be pretty literal in their technology decisions.) Why would a "young Internet company" tie their business to a platform with shrinking market share and a tiny non-Sun developer base? We are confident MySQL will continue supporting Linux as its primary platform partner since that is where they make their sales.

Interestingly, Schwartz seemed to agree with at least the first part of this statement in a Jan. 19 blog post where he answered questions about the impending MySQL acquisition. The relevant questions and their answers were as follows:

Will you change their platform priorities? Absolutely not. Why not? Because the L in LAMP stands for Linux, not Looney. Customers prioritize MySQL's platform choices, not Sun. As with Glassfish, their number one download platform is still Windows -- and we're very committed to those developers, as well.

It certainly seems like he's changed his tune, but maybe I'm missing something.