Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Is this the future of tech journalism?

:Link to Article:
With the 4th Estate going the way of the dodo, we are faced with the prospect of reading blogs to get our daily dose of news. This might be a future event for most forms of journalism, but Tech journalism has already made the move to the web with mixed results. Take this story from the Daring Fireball today:

VirtualBox is: “a family of powerful x86 virtualization products for enterprise as well as home use. Not only is VirtualBox an extremely feature rich, high performance product for enterprise customers, it is also the only professional solution that is freely available as Open Source Software under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL).”

I need to use this for a certain project I’m working on. Admittedly, I’m not using it in any “enterprise” sense, whatever that means. I’m just using it as a desktop virtualization system. But from that perspective it strikes me as inferior to VMware Fusion in every way. An inferior product given away for free — is it any wonder that Sun is in trouble?
Without providing specifics about what was inferior (everything can't be), or any details about how the product was used, this post, in my opinion, is more slander than journalism. Turns out, Daring Fireball is a blog read by thousands, so this post will prevent its readers from even giving VirtualBox a fair chance. Maybe I am old school; when writing about a product, I try to accurately represent the pros and cons of using it. Unfortunately, I don't have the power to strike a product down with my keystrokes (a single flick of the pen doesn't seem apt any more). I believe that people whose fingers do wield that power should use it wisely.

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