Ben Laurie blathering

Apple Sauce

I found this report on an Apple European Analyst Event, whatever that is. Apple, apparently, say

The fastest way to get to open standards (our commitment) is through open source.

So far, so good. They go on to say

We’re a major contributor to Jabber, mySWL, modperl, php, OpenLDAP, Apache, python, SQLite, Rails, CalDav, FreeBSD, freeRadius, SpamAssasin, SquirrelMail, ApacheAnt, OpenSSL etc

Well. I don’t know about the rest of them, but I do know about OpenSSL and Apache. I’ve been working on OpenSSL since it began, and I don’t remember any contribution from Apple. I just checked the CHANGES file – not a single mention of Apple. Also, I know for a fact that Apple have spent a good deal of energy trying to remove OpenSSL from their stack.
I was going to say the same holds true of Apache but my friend Fred Sanchez has worked on Apache forever and also works for Apple. To what extent his contributions to Apache were effectively Apple’s and not his own, I don’t know. Apart from Fred, though, I’m not aware of any Apple contributions there, either.

I wonder if the rest of their “contributions” are equally fanciful?


  1. No ant contrib. Sun, IBM, HP (me :), Redhat, novell, yes. Lots of users, yes. No apple, at least not from their email address

    We normally notice vendor specific contribs if they are to get Ant working on a platform, the IBM mainframes, Netware and VMS are specific examples, or to integrate with a vendors toolchain. As MacOS is a unix, there’s no need for that.

    Maybe their contrib is “they spend time getting their OS to work so that Java and ant and apache and the like work”

    Comment by Steve Loughran — 7 Dec 2006 @ 20:09

  2. This caused a bit of bit of discussion with the Apple FanBoys in my office this morning (okay, maybe I stirred them up on purpose – sometimes it’s fun to watch).

    I hate conversations that spiral into this, but maybe it’s a valid point? maybe not? The debate here came down to the phrase “We’re a major contributor…” Does Apple mean “we” as in Apple Computer Corp is an official contributor. Or did they mean “we” as in “our employees.”

    As seems to be the common response, very few contributions (if any?) comes from Any contributions thus far would seem more to be “indirect” – in that perhaps they allow employees to spend company time on OSS projects, which get contributed personally.

    If that’s the case – I’m very sorry that Apple’s PR/Marcom group chose the phrasing they did. Good move on their part for I’m sure many people will accept it at face value & thus Apple continues to win “OSS points.”

    Comment by Steve (Lock) Kirk — 8 Dec 2006 @ 17:51

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