I gave a keynote at OSCON yesterday. Always fun – especially if you have about 48 hours of warning that you’ll be the speaker… Imad, my boss, was called out of town on short notice and asked me to take over from him. Which I did quite happily as I love giving presentations (weird, I know).
The topic was Moblin – or more specifically, the Moblin.org open source project and our goal to get a larger and larger open source developer community together that will drive the direction of the open source software stack used on internet focused devices. Lots of “open source” in that last sentence. And that’s intentional. There are many projects that try to create open source or Linux based stacks for mobile devices. But none of them have really convinced me that they are truly open source. Openmoko may be an exception – but as I wrote a couple of months ago progress there has been slow.
So why is this focus on open source important? Because only if we allow the community to take the stack and push it in any direction they want to go, contribute back, take the ideas and start new projects and overall make this project theirs, only then will the type of innovation happen on Moblin that I think will be the key to the success of mobile Linux devices. And while I love my Mac and I know that my wife likes her iPhone, I’d much rather see a free and open stack be successful and competitive and ensure that innovation will continue.