I have recently started playing with OpenIndiana as part of renewed effort in the BeleniX space to realign with the latest developments. We intend to collaborate and participate in the OpenIndiana community. We are still firming up the plans and approaches.
In the meantime I have been playing with OpenIndiana a bit and find it quite appealing once the few initial hiccups are worked around. They are minor in any case. It is fast and smooth especially the speed with which Firefox loads. This is how the OpenSolaris distro project should have been setup I feel, driven and “owned” by the community from which SUN could have derived value. However communities were formed and then messed up. For example http://lwn.net/Articles/370157/, and BeleniX efforts which were broadly leveraged to build a flagship product and then the original source summarily ignored.
However that is all past now the organization having succumbed to the many problems that riddled it. Some things stand out like diversity issues and lack of business innovation. There are interesting developments happening now in the fledgling community around Illumos and OpenIndiana. I am excited by all that and motivated to participate and contribute.
OpenIndiana in all this is really looking good and I highly recommend it for folks to try out. The technical credit no doubt goes to the erstwhile SUN engineers around distribution, OS, install, desktop and related groups who put in countless hours of effort. Credit also goes to folks like Alaisdair, Guido for getting the community to rally round all this, organizing and actually delivering something excellent which was earlier missing in action. This is just the start though and a lot of concerted effort is needed by the community to keep this going and developing. Lets hope for the best.