Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Vig

The Vigorish, or Vig, is a term used to describe the amount ones pays a bookmaker for their services. I got it from James Kunstler's recent story on his unprintable blog name, where he uses it to describe the looming sub-prime mortgage disaster. It turns out, the Vig applies to computing as well.

You might have heard about the Open Source Trials document that was put out by the U.K. Office of Government Commerce. Basically, they say that running Linux can double your hardware life cycle. I was going to pound away at this, but then an article over at searchopensource made me realize that i don't need to, because most of the world has already got it:

For many countries, however -- save the U.S. -- the U.K. report could be preaching to the choir. Many countries have already begun Linux migrations in earnest over the past six months. In February, at the Asia Open Source Software Symposium in Denpasar, Indonesia, it was announced that the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry's Information Service Industry had quietly been a long time user of open source. The governments of Cambodia, China, India, Pakistan, South Korea and Taiwan also announced a switch. The Cuban government, too, made news when it declared it was ending its use of Windows in lieu of an open source deployment.

But for those of us you don't want the free operating system, it's time to pay the yearly Vig - the hardware upgrades, the licensing fees, renew SLAs with Oracle and SAP, what have you. Maybe because of the fact that we are up to debt in our eyeballs that paying the Vig on computer equipment seems so natural... mortgage, car payment, new operating system...

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