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Linux on Wall StreetRaven Zachary, April 24, 2006 @ 11:16 am ET
I’m at the Linux on Wall Street Conference today in New York City. The web site lists the conference as “Linux on Wall Street”, but the show guide prominently displays “Linux/Open Source on Wall Street” – a sign of greater diversity. While the exhibition area is dominated by Linux hardware vendors and the big guys (IBM, HP, Intel, Red Hat, Novell, Unisys, Dell, Cisco), there are also a few software vendors – CollabNet, Sybase, Black Duck, ActiveState, and SourceLabs, to name a few. SpikeSource and JBoss are here as speakers, but not exhibitors (I’ll go check out the Red Hat booth and see if there are any JBoss folks hanging out). This one-day conference is in its 4th year.
Linux conferences and magazines are highly dependent on hardware vendors as sponsors/advertisers. What is going to happen in 5-10 years when virtually everyone has migrated to commodity hardware and the new customer acquisition phase is mostly over? Yes, people will continue to upgrade, but I don’t foresee this level of marketing for customer retention. Will services and software vendors pick up the slack, or will we see a reduction in vendor spend as I saw first-hand at LinuxWorld in Boston?
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