Open Source, GPL, Linux and Apple #Linuxcon

Jim Zemlin LinuxCon KeynoteFrom the ‘There is GPL code for that app’ files:

SAN DIEGO. Apple is one of the most closed companies on Earth. Yet according to Jim Zemlin, the Executive Director of the Linux Foundation, Apple embraces open source too.

Speaking in the keynote address at the LinuxCon CloudOpen event, Zemline said that the days of just creating software on your own are over, there is a real need to collaborate. He said that the most successful technology companies in the world are now masters of using and contributing to open source.

When it comes to successful tech companies, no one is more successful than Apple.

“There is lots of open source software in every device Apple creates,” Zemlin said. “They get how to leverage open source.”

To prove his point, Zemlin said all any iPhone user need to do is to go into General > about > legal notices on an iPhone. Among the items listed are multiple open source GPL components. The legal notices also identify Ted T’so, a well known Linux kernel developers for his code as well.

Going a step further, Zemlin reminded that audience that Apple is now the steward of the CUPS (Common Unix Printing System) that is on every Linux (and Apple) system. Apple purchased the copyrights for CUPS and employs its core committers.

“My point being is that the world has really moved full scale in this direction,” Zemlin said. “Even companies we think of as closed source embrace open source to compete.”

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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