2 Replies to “A comic link”

  1. Mm, allegory.

    Now, this comes down to “offending people and wasting time on the Internet,” but I think the present http://home.shiningsilence.com/cleanlogo.gif has some genius to it. Tux is “genius” because he’s a malleable character who can be portrayed and anthropomorphized in infinite ways; the “DragonFly Cross” is a single unmistakable symbol, but at the same time the *character* of Fred can be as flexible as Tux or Chuck, without the risk of such uses being mistaken for ‘official’ project artwork.

    That, in turn, characterizes the subtle difference between a conventionally BSD project (as DragonFly is) and Linux… DragonFly, ‘professionally’/’semantically,’ is what resides in project CVS; Torvalds has trademark rights on “Linux,” but the openness of the brand means “Linux” itself is whatever you’ve got on disk at the time. (Thus “Linux” gets the benefit of never being forked, because Linux users refuse to call forks forks, while DBSD gets the usual benefit of being “one thing” people can tell if they are/aren’t compatible with, etc etc.) … Yes, there’s the “one true Tux” image (and the “one true FreeBSD logo”), but none of that is obvious to normal humans, especially when third-party graphics derive from them.

    It’s not unlike that darn boing ball (or the forgotten double-checkmarks before it), and philosophically on par with or ‘better’ than the Windows or Java logos (note that I’m only bothering to compare logos that attempt to apply to a ‘technology,’ not a business), because those have been levered to make unrelated technologies seem to fit together.

    Of course, unless/until things get noticed enough to the point of [insert link I couldn’t dig up to generic Linux story important enough to warrant commissioning art of a backwards-capped penguin smashing out billg’s windows with a baseball], it doesn’t matter too much anyway.

    NB: For a long time, I assumed the daemon was just some sort of athletic mascot for UCB. ;)

  2. Oh, the corollary I left out — it *also* gives you the freedom to say “Cripes, it’s an insect!” to any nuts who think it just kinda vaguely resonates with that other symbol.

    [There’s a really subtle and deranged parallel with early Hi-Toro/Amiga Inc. management philosophy here, but I’m not going to say it, because Matt’s surely got better things to do than defend himself from such comparisons. ;) Hey, gotta endure those Promethean analogies when creating ‘enabling technology.’]

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