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Philip R. Zimmermann is the creator of PGP (Pretty Good
Privacy). He is now working on a new project called Zfone to
build a secure VoIP telephony system.

During these 10 years, a lot of things happened in the
open-source world. What impressed you positively, and what
negatively?

Philip Zimmermann: I'm happy to see that open source has
become a mainstream concept in corporate circles, as the LAMP
bundle‹especially Linux‹has gained momentum. And now, Linux
is poised to become the dominant platform in the mobile
market, including phones. The idea of mobile phones breaking
out of the walled garden is exciting, and open source is
accelerating that trend. Also, Linux is finally, after all
these years, getting within striking range of becoming useful
to humans on the desktop, especially the Ubuntu distro.

On the negative side, open source has not led the way with
the most innovative products. Mac OS X is a much nicer user
experience than Linux, for example. Photoshop and Apple's
Aperture are nicer to use than GIMP. It seems the raw
Darwinian profit motive is the best way to get innovation.
Open source then has to catch up. I wish we could do the same
in the open-source world. Maybe it's because
commercially-developed products like Apple's are centrally
managed with a strong vision. Microsoft Windows is a negative
example of the Cathedral, but it's hard to find Insanely
Great products like the iPhone at the Bazaar.
-----

One of the founders of the concept of free software... wonder how many
people in COLA will agree with him?


--
It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu
speech. -- Mark Twain