Jackass of the Week: BitMover CEO Larry McVoy

BitKeeper is a proprietary, commercial source code management system. Mercurial is an open source, free source code management system. Bryan O’Sullivan works at a company that uses BitKeeper, but on his own time, he worked on Mercurial. Larry McVoy (CEO of BitMover, the company behind BitKeeper) contacted O’Sullivan’s employer to “[convey] his very legitimate worry that a fast, stable open source project such as Mercurial poses a threat to his business, and that he considered it ‘unacceptable’ that an employee of a customer should work on a free project that he sees as competing.”

What’s ironic about this is that BitKeeper’s home page prominently features a quote from open-source demigod Linus Torvalds. (Cf. the Wikipedia entry on BitKeeper for more.)

Friday, 14 October 2005