industry consortium which includes Red Hat, MontaVista
Software and IBM is trying to make it easier for companies
to use the Linux OS in cell phones, network routers,
and other devices.
The consortium, which is named the Embedded Linux Consortium,
aims to ensure that Linux for 'embedded' devices conforms
to certain guidelines. Since Linux is an open source
software project, anyone can modify and redistribute
the software's underlying source code, which sometimes
makes for a fast-changing and chaotic environment as
companies and hobbyists develop and distribute their
The Embedded Linux Consortium's effort called the ELC
Platform Specification, helps freeze some aspects of
Linux technology, providing a more stable foundation
for companies thinking of using Linux in their gadgets.
On another front, a company called Reasoning, which
provides automated software inspection services, scrutinized
part of the code of Linux and five other OSs comparing
the number and rate of programming defects. Specifically,
Reasoning examined TCP/IP, a key networking technology,
and found fewer errors in Linux.
The company feels that the open source implementation
of TCP/IP in the Linux kernel clearly exhibits a higher
code quality than commercial implementations in general-purpose
OSs. The Linux defect rate was 0.1 defects per 1,000
lines of code.