05.12.08

Microsoft to FOSS Poster Child: Come And Join Hands with Us

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Open XML, Windows at 12:16 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Some things should only work on Windows, some things work cross-platform…”

Steve Ballmer, 2007

Remember ThinkFree? There are many situations where Microsoft approaches or acquires projects to ensure it can successfully exclude competitors and make third-party software developers (including their end users) more Microsoft-dependent. Watch what Microsoft is up to with Bldender at the moment. Blender is a FOSS poster child.

Microsoft has just approached the Blender guys, and I would assume have or will approach other FOSS projects since we learn that Microsoft has assigned a guy to work with Open Source projects, with a request for information on how to make Blender run better on Windows.

[...]

Get it? They view everything as a battle. “All Open Source innovation” means to him, I gather, that Windows runs the applications so well, the GNU/Linux operating system dies off. Who needs it? That’s how they think, because they don’t grasp any purpose to freedom for the code or for the end user. If you do, please watch out. The OOXML saga stands as a perfect example of how Microsoft plays to win, by hook or by crook. It is a “standard” that only Microsoft can fully use. That’s not openness to me.

Nothing has changed. Microsoft believes it can just buy people’s souls — buying them away from its #1 competitor. Watch out for those who possibly enable Microsoft to achieve this. Watch out, Blender developers.

Related articles:

OOXML is fraud

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4 Comments

  1. AlexH said,

    May 12, 2008 at 3:05 am

    Gravatar

    This might be the first time they’ve done this with file formats, but they’ve been doing things a bit like this for a while now: they’ve flown developers out to Redmond to work on better Windows support.

    It is a bit of a double-edged sword: for example (if memory serves), Mozilla/Firefox had NTLM authentication on Windows only for a long time, which meant it could do real single sign-on just on that platform. Very important for people using corporate intranets, but obviously putting non-Windows platforms at a disadvantage.

  2. defenestrator said,

    May 12, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    Gravatar

    It’s no surprise. M$ recently bought a competitor to Blender and since M$ never buys good products nor can compete, it has to throw sand in the gears for the good products:

    http://www.infoworld.com/article/08/02/08/Microsoft-buys-3D-company-for-Virtual-Earth_1.html

    M$ has started to fall behind in OpenGL support and with the rise of the game consoles (of which even the PS2 outsells the M$ turd) there is no need for Windows PC-based gaming.

    However, since many of the consoles dual boot Linux, I’d like to see the option to plug the console into the main desktop machine and act as a single-node render farm.

  3. Balzac said,

    May 13, 2008 at 9:18 am

    Gravatar

    I love Blender and I can’t stand Microsoft. I hope the Blender project keeps Microsoft’s dirty influence far away. They’re only trying to sabotage another great project.

    I hope the Blender guys aren’t politically-naive like many in the “open source” crowd.

    I’m so tired of the “open source” people criticizing RMS and free software ideology when they’re so damned naive!

    Don’t play nice with Microsoft, your community will be violated in the end!

  4. aussiebear said,

    May 13, 2008 at 5:42 pm

    Gravatar

    What do you expect from Microsoft?

    “Initiate Plan A”
    * Destroy FOSS with FUD => “Get the Facts”, “Cancer”, etc.

    “Outcome of Plan A”
    * Spectacular Failure.

    “Initiate Plan B”
    * Create the impression of “interoperability” by olive branching with FOSS.

    Why do I say “impression”? Because its very obvious that all this is a facade!

    (1) “MS’s Open Specification Promise” is deliberately incompatible with the GPL. (They won’t officially acknowledge it, but instead, provide some half hearted response about “legal interpretation”. It was a simple “Yes/No” question, and they couldn’t even answer it!)

    (2) Their intention is to encourage open source developers to work only on their platform. (ie: Windows)…The goal is to kill Linux. An OS is nothing without good applications.

    (3) They have tried to emulate FOSS. And this has also failed. (Their version of SourceForge and their “Linux/Open source Lab”…Port25).

    (4) They’ve only become generous when they know it gives them leverage over others OR they have been legally pressured into it. (See the European anti-trust case).

    (5) They have manipulated the ISO process to their advantage. Every geek on this planet who cares for standards knows it. (ie: Stacking the votes with local Microsoft Certified Partners in certain countries).

    (6) Instead of working on an OOXML to ODF (vice versa) plug-in themselves, (as they have the full OOXML implementation), they hire third-parties to do the work, and put the project on Sourceforge to TRY to make a good impression.

    The fact is, despite all their recent “olive branching”, it doesn’t hide the values and principles of Microsoft for the last 20yrs+.

    That is:
    (1) Destroy ALL competition by any means. This is WAR!
    (2) Take control or develop OUR OWN standards.
    (3) Subvert anything that will hurt our future.

    They have NO intention of actively taking part in Open Source in the traditional sense. Instead, they will redefine what “open” means under their terms and use their PR to push their definition.

    They ARE the bad guy. No matter how hard you try, you cannot do deals with bad guys. Because you will always be left out in the gutter, bleeding from the huge knife in your back.

    The best way to handle Microsoft is to ignore them, and minimise your reliance on them. (Being completely independent of them is often the best outcome).

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