Yesterday saw IBM cease the sale of the OS/2 Operating system. Come the 31st of December, standard support for the OS will end also. However, a significant number of companies and people continue to use it, and they are finding ways for OS/2 to live on.
Back in April of this year, OS/2 website OS2 World started a petition. It's aim was to get IBM to release OS/2 as an open source piece of software, so that existing users could continue to use and develop it, should they wish. In November, after nearly twelve thousand signatures had been collected, the petition was sent to IBM's CEO, Sam Palmisano. As of yet there has been no response from IBM.
However, regardless of whether IBM release OS/2 as open source or not, there are still others working to keep it alive. US based Serenity Systems International have developed an OEM version of OS/2 called eComStation, setting the ball rolling for an OS/2 build of the popular office suite OpenOffice.org. Additional projects for eComStation include new graphics drivers, audio support and wrappers for Windows LAN and wireless drivers. It's clear than that some are still passionate about OS/2 and keeping it going, even if IBM have given up on it.
However, if current OS/2 / eComStation developers could get their hands on the source code for OS/2, it would help them out with current and future developments. OS2 World hopes that at some point they'll be able to talk the issue over with IBM and maybe come to an arrangement. However, for now the ball is in IBM's court, and developers will have to battle on with what they've got.
Long live OS/2?
OS2 World - Petition status and update.