[Marketing] [SoaS] Competition for the XO

Caroline Meeks solutiongrove at gmail.com
Sun Oct 25 17:43:50 EDT 2009

Woohoo!  This is excellent news!!

Sent from my iPhone
Caroline Meeks

On Oct 25, 2009, at 5:27 PM, Sean DALY <sdaly.be at gmail.com> wrote:

> one of those happy (for me) occasions I can say I told y'all so:
> Microsoft unwraps netbook Windows 7 upgrade tool
> http://news.idg.no/cw/art.cfm?id=8D089C46-1A64-6A71-CE5E2B4B5BE26477
> "Microsoft has released a tool that lets netbook owners install
> Windows 7 on their machines using a USB flash drive, sidestepping the
> usual requirement of a DVD drive... The utility, Windows 7 USB/DVD
> Download Tool, creates a bootable flash drive from a downloaded .iso
> file, or disk image, of Windows 7, and can be purchased from
> Microsoft's online store."
> MS announcement:
> http://windowsteamblog.com/blogs/windows7/archive/2009/10/22/windows-7-arrives-today-with-new-offers-new-pcs-and-more.aspx
> "The Microsoft Store will be providing a tool called the Windows 7
> USB/DVD Download Tool (rolls right off the tongue doesn’t it?) –  
> or
> WUDT for short. For netbook users without DVD drives, the WUDT will
> take an ISO image and create a bootable USB device that can be used to
> install Windows 7. The WUDT can also create a Windows 7 installation
> DVD from the ISO file as well."
> For my part, I think "LiveUSB Creator" sounds a lot more professional
> than "WUDT" :D
> This is fabulous news, because there is now incentive for every OEM,
> tech site, blogger, etc. to describe how to set BIOS to boot from
> USB!!
> Such instructions will become easily googlable, lowering the barrier
> for booting Sugar on a Stick (or indeed any liveUSB system)
> Sean
> On Sat, Oct 10, 2009 at 7:14 PM, David Farning  
> <dfarning at sugarlabs.org> wrote:
>> On Sat, Oct 10, 2009 at 5:18 AM, Sean DALY <sdaly.be at gmail.com>  
>> wrote:
>>> This list from early 2008 is way out of date... for OLPC, they are  
>>> off
>>> by a million machines or so :D
>>> Nevertheless, it is useful, thanks Tim
>>> I agree that any OEM deal will raise Sugar's profile immensely.
>>> However, seeing OEMs is time and travel intensive, difficult with  
>>> our
>>> limited resources. I should add that as we are dependent on an
>>> underlying distro, all of which have encountered difficulties inking
>>> OEM deals.
>>> It's my belief that the most promising OEM deals with GNU/Linux
>>> distros and "Sugar on top" will happen over non-x86 processor
>>> architectures such as ARM - in other words, on machines which can't
>>> run Windows. This is how EeePC started the retail netbook craze;
>>> Windows couldn't run on the lowest-end netbooks, and even where they
>>> could, they didn't wish to be price-squeezed at the bottom of the
>>> market. Their response has been to pressure OEMs to beef up netbook
>>> specs and drop GNU/Linux distros, to rename netbooks as "ULCPCs" (a
>>> total failure), and to insure that Windows 7 will be technically  
>>> able
>>> to run on netbooks. They are claiming this for the launch later this
>>> month, but what's missing is how they intend to ease the upgrade  
>>> path
>>> from Windows XP (wipe and install necessary) on machines with no
>>> optical drives. Is online update of the whole OS an option? Or
>>> requiring price-conscious netbook owners to buy an external optical
>>> drive just for the upgrade? I myself believe the rumors that there
>>> will be a Windows USB stick SKU, possibly with a tool for saving and
>>> reinstalling WinXP data. None of the major tech journalists  
>>> following
>>> Microsoft are talking about this problem which leads me to believe
>>> they have been briefed on Microsoft's plans under embargo.
>>> Our approach up to now has been to establish our identity parallel  
>>> to
>>> but separate from OLPC, in order to minimize the impact of their bad
>>> press, while at the same time supporting OLPC as our primary  
>>> installed
>>> base. OEM deciders need to know about us - Mike Lee mentioned how at
>>> NECC in Washington DC a few months back, he showed Sugar on a Stick
>>> running on an EeePC to a surprised Asus executive - so we work on
>>> raising our public profile and building a meme that "Sugar runs on
>>> everything". Press launches raise buzz and the news reaches NGOs  
>>> too.
>>> We are also planning promotional work to NGOs with the FSF.
>>> Concretely, what this means is I try to add the names of OEM execs  
>>> to
>>> our press mailing list, and we are making efforts to be present at
>>> education tech shows and conferences where OEMs can see us.
>>> How do you think we could better reach OEMs? There is of course
>>> working the phones, which David and Walter do a lot of.
>>> Finally, there is the community aspect. OEMs will take risks  
>>> choosing
>>> any GNU/Linux distro and for a Sugar-branded machine in particular.
>>> They want to know that our community is vibrant, growing, active in
>>> the distro ecosystem, and well-governed.
>> Sean is spot on with this assessment.  OEMs are not particularly
>> concerned with the sugar product.  They are interested in the Sugar
>> Labs project.  If they just want Sugar, they can fork it.  The value
>> for an OEM comes from being able to build a competitive product on  
>> top
>> of the 'output' from Sugar Labs.
>> As an example, 10 years ago there were dozens of kernels and  
>> operating
>> systems for embedded devices. Now we are down to a handful.  The
>> quality of the remaining kernels and operating systems is good enough
>> that it is seldom worthwhile for a embedded device manufacture to  
>> roll
>> their own.
>> Embedded device manufactures collaboratively develop Linux while
>> competing by selling devices which run Linux.
>>  The relationship between Sugar Labs and OLPC is a case study in the
>> nature of a relationship between sugar Labs and any other OEM.  OLPC
>> (or other OEMs) must:
>> 1. Build the hardware.
>> 2. Pick sugar over (or in addition to) other learning platforms.
>> 3. Pick a Linux distribution.
>> 4. Combine Sugar with a standard Linux distribution to run on their  
>> hardware.
>> 5. Optimize the standard Sugar/distribution for their hardware.
>> 6. Sell the hardware/distribution/sugar 'product.'
>> 7. Support the hardware/distribution/sugar 'product.'
>> 8. Generate enough Return On Investment to make it cost effective to
>> repeat steps 1-7.
>> An interesting note is that from an operations point of view, SoaS is
>> very similar to a 'normal' OEM relationship.  But in this case the
>> hardware is a USB memory stick which runs on other systems.
>> david
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