10.10.09

Novell VP Brushes Off Microsoft’s Attacks on GNU/Linux, Promotes .NET

Posted in Apple, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, OIN, OpenSUSE, SLES/SLED at 10:53 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Miguel de Icaza
via Wikipedia

Summary: Novell’s de Icaza disregards substantiated warnings about Microsoft; Mono/C# spread to Apple’s territory

Novell has made it a lot clearer recently that it is no friend of Free software. And according to this, its vice president also ignores the warning from the Linux Foundation, the OIN, and the SFLC. They all warned about Microsoft’s active patent aggression against GNU/Linux [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6].

Novell vice-president Miguel de Icaza has dismissed Microsoft’s bid to sell patents that could be used to attack Linux, saying it was not a problem as the patents were now in good hands.

[...]

“As for the patent sale, they are now in good hands: the OIN, so they are not a problem.” (emphasis mine)

Mark pointed out that some of the comments, made in reaction to De Icaza’s post, made no sense because they were referring to this deleted portion. De Icaza did not respond to this post.

How typical. Similar questions were raised before and he either denies, spins or slinks away. But who can blame him? He works for Microsoft now. Sam Ramji, the Microsoft equivalent of Miguel de Icaza, not only escapes hard questions; he escaped the company.

Over at ZDNet, Dana Blankenhorn operates a poll regarding whether de Icaza is a "traitor" or not.

There is an implication in Perlow’s piece (mouse over the illustration at its top) that Miguel de Icaza, credited with launching both Mono and GNOME, should be that alternative spokesman. This is partly due to Stallman’s focusing on him as “a traitor” to the FLOSS movement.

Technically he is. But as I’ve noted before, being a traitor to FLOSS does not make you a traitor to open source. The two things are quite different, even if they share a license in the GPL. And open source, as opposed to to FLOSS, does lack a leader. a spokesman, a Stallman if you will.

At the time of writing, 40% consider de Icaza to be a “traitor” to Open Source (not Free software). People must bear in mind that the site’s readership is actually favourable to de Icaza because Blankenhorn is a lot more open source-oriented than GNU/Linux- or Free software-oriented. The way the question was phrased also said “open source”, as opposed to “Free(dom) software”.

Here are a couple of new comments from Linux Today. It’s regarding SUSE, which Richard Stallman does not endorse. The first commenter calls it “Microsoft Linux”.

It’s not their favorite, but there is a Microsoft Linux being sold. It’s called SUSE (Novell)

Looks like ‘world domination’ did happen. MS now has both outcomes covered.

The correct response is to ignore it all and just keep coding.

Fisher King’s message is titled “Being over obvious…lawyers vs. Product folks” and it says:

It is sad for the product development and product mgmt folks at Microsoft that they have to live by the crud their lawyers and CEO orchestrated with Novell.
Making them leap up and talk about the Novell patent protection, and spreading Linux FUD…like customers care. All it does is make customers leery, and makes the MS employees look and feel inadequate (like they can’t compete without the big bully standing next to them). I know for sure this upsets many smart, driven people that work at Microsoft. “Don’t talk about the quality of your product, sell Suse, and tell people why non-Suse Linux is bad”. What a giant waste of time and energy.

Novell’s unique output these days seems rather beneficial to Microsoft. Such is the case with MonoTouch, which we wrote about in:

Here is some more new coverage of this. It’s like free advertising for .NET, which comes directly from Novell.

Like the earlier announcement from Novell about MonoTouch letting .NET compile iPhone apps, Flash is using the same “ahead of time” compilation instead of “just-in-time” to build the native apps.

Microsoft cannot own the iPhone, so it tries to put its DNA in it, just as it did with Nokia/Symbian several weeks ago.

What developer tools are available? You can use the aforementioned iPhone SDK, or if you are using C#, Delphi Prism or other .NET languages, you can also use Mono Touch from Novell.

How nice of Novell to offer an endorsement of C#.

The new tool is called MonoTouch and it comes, ironically, from Linux company Novell (NOVL). “It definitely lowers the barrier to writing and porting iPhone applications because there are many more C# developers than Objective-C developers,” said Daniel Leuck, CEO of smartphone and social media software development company Ikayzo.

The above article contains an inaccuracy. Novell is not really a “Linux company”. Linux only makes up a small proportion of the company’s revenue, so a characterisation as such would prove misleading.

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