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08.12.09

Novell Ignores Microsoft’s Community Promise Limitations

Posted in Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Patent Covenant, Patents at 4:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Man keeping it together

Summary: Novell’s development of Mono steps outside the sandbox defined by Microsoft’s Community Promise

AS WE noted 5 days ago, the Mono developers (of which there are not many) are making Sqlite easier for Microsoft to embrace and extend (if Microsoft ever wishes to do so). Miguel de Icaza is just one among several who rave about this and yesterday he wrote about C# 4 and Mono, confirming the worries that Microsoft’s useless Community Promise (MCP) will be rendered “not applicable” as .NET continues to evolve.

“This is why projects such as Banshee are also stepping in areas of .NET which the MCP simply does not cover.”In essence, Novell already knows that Microsoft’s MCP is limited to particular packages/components and versions of C#/.NET (and their Mono equivalents). Novell can totally ignore this because it has a special and exclusionary deal with Microsoft (regarding software patents, to be more specific). This is why projects such as Banshee are also stepping in areas of .NET which the MCP simply does not cover.

For the time being, Novell’s new release of Evolution seems unencumbered by Mono, but this changes as soon as Evolution is put inside distributions and gains plug-ins [1, 2, 3]. The same goes for Novell’s Go-OO, which happens to share the same “go-” prefix as “go-evolution” and “go-mono”. It is almost as though they are all part of the same dynasty.

As another new article puts, “Microsoft [is] wary of [the] Linux threat.” It does not give .NET away as a ‘gift’ — no more than the town of Troy enjoyed the gifting of a large wooden horse.

“The patent danger to Mono comes from patents we know Microsoft has, on libraries which are outside the C# spec and thus not covered by any promise not to sue. In effect, Microsoft has designed in boobytraps for us.

“Indeed, every large program implements lots of ideas that are patented. Indeed, there’s no way to avoid this danger. But that’s no reason to put our head inside Microsoft’s jaws.”

Richard Stallman

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A Single Comment

  1. JohnD said,

    August 12, 2009 at 6:05 pm

    Gravatar

    Well since there are so few of them, I guess what the Mono project is doing is really a non issue.
    Miguel also stated when the promise was announced that they would create a branch that was limited to what the MCP covers.

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