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Japan, China, S Korea Agree To Standardize Linux 270

Ooi writes "Japan Today News reports: 'The governments of Japan, China and South Korea have agreed to work together to come up with an alternative computer operating system to reduce reliance on Microsoft's Windows, the Yomiuri and Nihon Keizai newspapers reported Sunday. According to the reports, the three countries will help their private sectors develop Linux, an open-source OS that can be copied and modified freely. The agreement was signed in Beijing on Saturday by senior government officials from the three countries.' Australian IT has an article on the issue prior to the meeting." A few weeks ago, I spoke at the Asia OSS meeting in Hanoi of which the three gov'ts above are also members. There's a very serious commitment to OSS especially among the governments represented there.
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Japan, China, S Korea Agree To Standardize Linux

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  • Re:But will it be OS (Score:3, Informative)

    by spafbnerf ( 749681 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @08:30AM (#8767919) Homepage
    Short Answer : No

    Not true.
    Quoted from the article []:

    Sources concerned said that as the three nations were heading for the same goal of promoting the cooperation on and development of open source software and pushing forward the campaign of opening source code in the northeast Asia, they agreed to exchange information on open source software, share research results, and make joint efforts on developing open source software of next generation based on the software with freely available source code represented by Linux.
    The three parties vowed to adhere to the principle of opening source code and make joint efforts to give contribution to the global open source software community.
  • Re:Red Flag (Score:3, Informative)

    by spafbnerf ( 749681 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @08:33AM (#8767934) Homepage
    China's Red Flag and Japan's Miracle Linux have a joint project named 'Asianux' which is now in beta.
  • by MrMr ( 219533 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @08:33AM (#8767935)
    Some judges may beg to differ. =c net&
  • by ctid ( 449118 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @08:45AM (#8768007) Homepage
    Linux is an open system. How could it become a monopoly? In other words, if company X introduces a Linux-based solution, what is to stop company Y from emulating that, or producing products that interoperate with it? If they don't abide by the terms of the GPL, you might have a point, but why would they want to do that? The point is that they're not beholden to a gigantic foreign company - the GPL helps them there.

    May I ask why you think that IT infrastructure is a sector that government should not touch? I mean, is there a real reason for believing that the private sector is superior in this area?

  • by rokzy ( 687636 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @08:50AM (#8768038)
    are you retarded? yes. here's why: a monopoly isn't about having the most users, it's about control. linux can't be a monopoly because no-one owns it or controls it in the way MS controls Windows. users have the choice, and the idea of this choice is built into the GPL such that it cannot be removed.

    monopolies are capable of being very good, for example they can make things standardised and there's no waste caused by repeating what's already been done. monopolies are ONLY bad when they act in such a way to remove a user's choice, otherwise survival of the fittest still applies.
  • by xandroid ( 680978 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @08:58AM (#8768090) Homepage Journal

    Actually, I can answer my own question. According to this story from the Korea Herald [], Red Flag will contributing knowledge, if not helping with the development:

    "At ['a meeting of government officials and industry figures in Beijing on Saturday'], Chinese software company Red Flag Linux and its Japanese partner Miracle Linux presented the results of their joint efforts in developing 'Asianux,' software designed as a compatible open-source standard for Asia. Korean companies Hancom, Wow Linux and others also exchanged their knowledge with the overseas counterparts."

    My only question..."Asianux"??

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 05, 2004 @09:05AM (#8768125)
    Ermm...some anecdotal evidence (The korean version of eBay) works fine on firefox
    - --this hosting site offers linux based hosting (haven't looked at any other hosting sites yet) works fine on firefox. works fine on firefox and loads faster than on IE.
    The major portals (naver/nate/daum) all work fine on Firefox

    Yes there is a lot of MS action over here in Korea, cause there are a whole lot of pirated installs of Windows over here. But the attitude is slowly changing, why just two days ago I saw a guy on the subway with a GNOME hoody.

  • by RoLi ( 141856 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @09:23AM (#8768245)
    Well, at least on the server-side, there is a lot of action in Korea: kr/index.html []

    which is somewhat a prerequesite for Linux on the desktop. If admins in companies have experience with Linux on servers, only then they will evaluate it on the desktops. It seems Microsoft has already lost the Korea-server market without any hope of gaining ground (When you run Linux, you have more choice of webhosters, have better support and on top pay less.) the desktop is next. It will take much longer than on the servers, but it will happen, especially when the government is helping.

  • by RoLi ( 141856 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @09:27AM (#8768266)
    It's funny that such anti-Linux comments pop up frequently, yet the posters don't seem to have problems with the US-Army's (and many other governmental organization's) "Microsoft-only" policy.
  • by lambent ( 234167 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @09:56AM (#8768561)
    The problem with localisation plugins ... aside from the Western-European standard they were all begun with, it doesn't always work well, or reliably, or accurately.

    This was discussed when the Asianux thing first came up on /. several months back ... for example, can you guarantee through a plugin system that multi-byte characters will display correctly all the time? Or weird accents? How about languages that read right to left, of top to bottom?

    I have enough trouble getting japanese & cyrillic characters to display correctly as it is (sometimes i'll get a mish-mash of squares and glyphs, or nothing at all). I have yet to see uniform treatment for internationalization in the consle (making file administration of foreigh-language encoded files completely impossible without a GUI).

    And heaven help me if i want to work in hebrew, or that weird ancient greek thing where they went left-right on one line, and then went right-left the next (okay, now I'm joking).

    Point is, you won't get the functionality these governments want using gettext, pango and i18n. (hell, i use all those and i'm still pissed off) The changes need to be funadmental to the software itself, not just after-market mods to western goods.
  • by bulgogi ( 768608 ) on Monday April 05, 2004 @10:00AM (#8768608)
    With 70% of their 44 million citizens on broadband already, and an economy growing far faster than Japan's, it is clearly nonsense to say Korea just wants a cheap OS for rapid growth.
  • Re:Nano (Score:3, Informative)

    by Gleef ( 86 ) * on Monday April 05, 2004 @10:08AM (#8768684) Homepage
    You can get "-w mode" also by putting a set nowrap line in either /etc/nanorc or ~/.nanorc, depending on whether you want to make it the system default or your personal default. That should do it.
  • by Archibald Buttle ( 536586 ) <> on Monday April 05, 2004 @03:46PM (#8772420)
    I'm a Mac user with a Korean girlfriend, and whilst she's pretty happy that she can use my OS in Korean she often has problems accessing web sites.

    The site she seems to spend most time at is This site often fails to render correctly - the front page is generally OK, but many bits are slightly screwy. She used to access it through public Internet kiosks though running Opera on Windows, which was a real rendering nightmare.

    For reading news and accessing her email it's OK, but for anything more than that Daum seems to require a Windows only plug-in. This is for simple things like accessing a chat room (which should be a simple Java applet) and viewing comic strips (which could be in Flash format, or even JPGs). For discussion boards they require you to read a two character code from a graphic and type it in to ensure it's not a bot posting to the board, but even with exactly the right characters entered it fails to recognise them.

    The reliance on Windows only plug-ins seems prevalent amongst Korean web sites. This is probably in part a reflection of the fact that they have had ubiquitous broadband for quite some time now and developers cater for the most common option first. It also seems like poor planning to me, since there have usually been cross-platform solutions for many years.

    At a really simple level some web sites also fail to identify that they are written in Korean, so they get rendered with strange Roman characters. Easily fixed by picking the appropriate language encoding in the browser, but easily fixed too by the web master mmaking sure their server correctly tags their web pages.

    Both of us usually use Safari - MS Internet Explorer generally gives an even worse experience.

    It seems to me that Korean web masters are both very lazy and are indeed, as the parent post suggested, owned by Microsoft.

When you are working hard, get up and retch every so often.