Amiga president bails

Collas quits -- no reason given beyond 'to pursue personal interests'

So farewell, then, Jim Collas. You were president of Amiga, inc. but now you have quit to pursue "personal interests", as your former employer puts it. Did you jump -- or were you pushed? Actually, we suspect the former. Collas was put in charge of Amiga in an attempt to make something of the moribund operation PC vendor Gateway bought a couple of years ago and arguably allowed to get into a worse state by the time Collas took over. Since then Collas helmed Amiga's shift away from its roots, in an Apple-style attempt to rebuild the company on new lines, preserving its original approach and philosophy rather than its technology. The snag was, that approach narked the more conservative Amiga fans, many of whom seem more interested in preserving the computer rather than the company -- forgetting, in the process, that you can't have the former without the latter. That view was typified by the hostility that the company's shift away from QNX to Linux as the basis for its next-generation operating environment, a hostility based less on any superiority of QNX -- that's not to say it isn’t a decent real-time OS -- and more on the false assumption that since Linux is a PC technology, it's adoption by Amiga was a sign that the company wanted to move away from its heritage and closer to the PC world. Given the vitriol directed at Collas personally, you can't blame him for getting out. More likely he has simply had a better offer from another company -- or perhaps he sees less of a future in the Amiga platform (which has a market share that makes even Apple look like a dominant player) than the die-hards would care to admit. Collas recently registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission to sell 118,000 Gateway shares -- implying that he doesn't have another salary to go to and his move was indeed inspired by a degree of disillusionment with the Amiga community, Amiga, inc. and/or Gateway's plans for it. Collas has, however, yet to issue a statement on his decision to quit. Meanwhile, Amiga VP and COO Tom Schmidt has been named president in his place. ®

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