07.25.08

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Embracing and Extending OSCON

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FUD, GPL, Microsoft, Windows at 5:28 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Steve Ballmer scared of GPLv3
Changing Open Source before it’s ‘too late’?

Microsoft sponsored OSCON. Very, very handsomely. Lots of money exchanged hands so that Microsoft can be nearer to its #1 competitor (according to Steve Ballmer and Ray Ozzie).

So now, regardless of whether attendants like it or don’t like it, Microsoft is there to influence. It has lots to worry about because Mark Shuttleworth has just advocated GPLv3 in OSCON, but he was restrained and receptive towards Microsoft. Microsoft must be treated like ‘part of the club’. You have to be polite to them. Yes, in an Open Source conference, or at least that’s what it was supposed to be. Watch this report from yesterday:

Aker’s response came to a question from O’Reilly Media CEO Tim O’Reilly [...] When it came to Microsoft, Aker replied that “Microsoft is irrelevant.”

O’Reilly chuckled at the response and offered a bit of an apology to any in the audience from Microsoft. After all, Microsoft is a top-level Diamond Sponsor of OSCON this year.

Microsoft is also a Diamond Sponsor of SourceForge awards, whose winners have just been announced. Yes, this includes those ‘lucky’ winners that are "most likely to be sued." Nice going, Microsoft. It was eMule and WINE. Microsoft may have used SourceForge to smear those projects (among others) and generally incite panic with a reminder that “open source is illegal.” (or a grey area)

Speaking of WINE, remember the impact of Novell’s patent deal with Microsoft on the project. This was last mentioned here.

Some say that Microsoft’s presence in OSCON is innocent. What’s not to like? Microsoft is ‘embracing’ open source. Microsoft is open… like a bear trap. Watch how it’s proceeding.

Also at OSCON, Microsoft will unveil IronRuby-Contrib, a Microsoft Public License (Ms-PL) open source project for collaborative development of code supporting IronRuby or the underlying platform, but not part of the IronRuby distribution. An example of such a project would be the Ruby on Rails plug-in built to make it easier for Rails developers to add Microsoft’s Silverlight rich Internet application technology to their applications, a Microsoft representative said.

[...]

While often criticized by open-source advocates, Microsoft nonetheless has established a presence at OSCON this week, with its sponsorship of the Participate08 session at OSCON, which was focused on boosting dialogue about open source and other collaborative communities.

This was discussed here before [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]. Microsoft will continue wooing Ruby developers until they move over to Windows (also on the server), rely on .NET and on Microsoft licences. Watch out, Ruby.

“We do NOT want to ship the ’standard’ with Windows because we want to make the native APIs more attractive. We want to evolve the standard APIs rapidly, and not have ISVs [independent software vendors] spending time on something that is cross-platform. Java standard server APIs are bad news for us. I veto any cooperation with this group unless someone comes and convinces me otherwise.”

Bill Gates, Microsoft

“Don’t encourage new, cross-platform Java classes, especially don’t help get great Win 32 implementations written/deployed. [...] Do encourage fragmentation of the Java classlib space.”

Ben Slivka, Microsoft

“The core of this trial is consumer choice and the premise is that consumers ought to make that decision, not Microsoft. Microsoft’s argument that says Java would have died anyway is a little bit like saying if somebody shoots you they can defend [themselves] by saying you have cancer.”

David Boies

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2 Comments

  1. xlinuks said,

    July 26, 2008 at 11:34 am

    Gravatar

    Hi, “SoruceForge” should be “SourceForge” I guess.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    July 26, 2008 at 11:39 am

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    Thanks! I’ll fix this.

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