Shane foresaw this in 2006
Some interesting points came up in a conversation with a reader. “Microsoft has been backing software patents as a marketing tactic by playing up indemnification [page no longer there],” he says, stressing that:
Indemnification Becomes Open Source’s Nightmare and Microsoft’s Blessing, November 10, 2004
Microsoft is currently using the Novell-type deals and ‘open source’ posturing to prevent the EU from imposing heavy fines. Just watch yesterday’s analysis over at Microsoft Watch:
Microsoft Appeals €899M Fine
After pressing further, based on a different statement given to Reuters, I got acknowledgement that Microsoft has filed an “application to annul” the fine. I guess the drama with the Competition Commission is far from over. But Microsoft wants closure on one act. The company’s appeal is more than about money. Microsoft is seeking a precedent that could forestall future fines related to protocol disclosure.
The Commission already has 3 (soon 4, at least potentially) simultaneous antitrust probes against Microsoft. One might as well reckon that Microsoft wants to slow them down, using more bureaucracy.
Further adds our reader: “Again the importance of not just the GPL, but specifically GPLv3. The importance is not going unnoticed.” It was stressed yet again in this new opinion piece that’s centered around Sun Solaris.
Crystal Ball Sunday #2: OpenSolaris vs. Linux
Second, and perhaps more important, is the license that both operating systems will eventually live under. Linus Torvalds opposes GPL3 and currently refuses to allow the kernel to be governed by it. OpenSolaris was released under the CDDL (Common Development and Distribution License).
I think the first one of these operating systems that is releases under GPL3 will probably gain widespread acceptance with developers, corporations, and adopters. The reason is that most of the other open source apps released under GPL3 will receive vigorous adoption and development by the kernel that also matches that license.
There’s still the danger of patent trolls. Yesterday afternoon we wrote about Nathan Myhrvold, about whom our reader had this to day: “people like that don’t care about how much they screw up their own country or others.” █
“If people had understood how patents would be granted when most of today’s ideas were invented, and had taken out patents, the industry would be at a complete standstill today.”
–Bill Gates, Challenges and Strategy Memo (May 16, 1991)
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