Monday, August 1, 2011

Linux, Linux, everywhere!

Every year there are articles published about this being the "Year of Linux". I read many of them and I realized that there is no specific "Year of Linux". I also wrote my own article arguing that every year is the year of Linux and as the Linux market share grows, one day we will realize that Linux is everywhere.

Not long ago, I started to realize that Linux is already creeping up on me from all sides. People who have never heard of Linux were raving about it. They were showing me their latest gadgets and telling me how cool they were. After several months of random people going on about their gadgets I did realize that Linux is everywhere and it came upon us from an unusual source. If you haven't figured it out yet, I am talking about Android which is based on the Linux kernel. A lot of people purchasing their latest phones do not know what Linux is or that Android is based on the Linux kernel. However, they are definitely happy with their latest hardware and the many features Android has. Moreover, Android phones are selling in large quantities and are surpassing Blackberry and iPhone sales. This is amazing and the trend seems to be continuing with excellent and solid phones such as the Samsung Galaxy S2. The Galaxy S2 is a gorgeous phone and it is even better than the iPhone 4. Apple will definitely have to come up with many cool new features for the iPhone 5 to be able to compete with the Android Smartphones.

One great thing about Android is that it is not limited to cellphones only. Android is being used on netbooks and tablets which have become very popular in the last few years. Because many users who use Android on their cellphones are familiar with the operating system, they have no problems buying netbooks and tablets which run Android as well. The cellphone industry was a great way to introduce people to the Android OS and then place the software on other gadgets as well.

Walking through a Big Box computer store today you will notice how many devices are running Android as well as the massive push in advertising. This is really neat to see and I am surprised that Android is so popular among everyday users who are not tech savvy. These people are the majority of consumers and are snapping up cellphones, netbooks and tablets running Android in large numbers.

Linux is definitely everywhere and continues to grow into markets that were dominated by other operating systems before. The server market is already being dominated by Linux. Cell phones, netbooks and tablets are starting to be dominated by Android and the last frontier is the desktop in which it has limited reach so far. However, one day we might just see Linux slowly creep up on us on the desktop as well.


  1. my samsung led tv has linux inside

  2. I have converted 13 people to Linux in the last couple years. Each of them frustrated with Windows and sick of all the issues and lengthy boot times. They ask me if I can reformat their hard drive and reinstall windows for them. I make them an offer, I tell them to try Linux for just two weeks (free of payment) and after the two weeks if they don't like it, I will reinstall windows for them at a cost.

    After the two weeks, they always say the same thing.. THIS IS AWESOME!

  3. You're right, here's my tally of Linux devices in our household:
    - 4 Android phones
    - 2 Sat. TV boxes
    - 1 Wifi Router
    - 1 Android tablet
    - 3 laptops (Thinkpad, Dell, Mac)
    - 1 desktop

    At work I have a mac mini and a 256 core compute cluster running Linux.

    Year of Linux? Yeah, we got that ;-)

  4. Android != Linux
    Open Source just doesn't work when it comes to consumer products used by the masses, and Google knows this, this is why the newest versions of Android are never open source

  5. A couple of weeks ago, a vendor told me that I needed to upgrade the software in the lab's Hach spectrophotometer. When the update came as a gz tarball, I poked around to see that the update script checked for Linux version and then selected the appropriate update for a unit either running a 2.4 or 2.6 kernel.