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12.21.09

Neon Challenges IBM’s GNU/Linux Mainframes, EU Challenges IE Bundling, and Microsoft Helps Push Mono and Moonlight Into GNU/Linux

Posted in Antitrust, Europe, GNU/Linux, IBM, Interoperability, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Patents, Servers, Windows at 5:54 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Expansion of some news picks from Groklaw, ranging from Neon news to the European Commission, Microsoft, Mono, and Moonlight

IBM has been charged with “anticompetitive” allegations by a company that appears not to be connected with Microsoft. Coverage about this includes:

Now, look at the company’s homepage. We have captured screenshots because the homepage will change in the future.

NEON Web site

Let’s look more closely:

NEON vs IBM

The company’s news section is narrow in terms of scope:

NEON news

T3′s homepage was also all about IBM immediately after T3 had sued IBM. We captured screenshots of that too, writing about them in previous posts about T3, whose connection to Microsoft we wrote about in:

The above might become handy in the future. At Groklaw, Pamela Jones points to this article when she writes: “Well, without knowing anything about the facts of this case yet, I do recall Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith’s remark when the EU Commission announced the deal about the browser, “It is important we believe to create a level legal and regulatory playing field,” Smith said. “Everyone that has a high market share needs to respect the same set of rules. I think a number of these rules are likely to be applicable to other companies and other products.”

Groklaw’s response to the atrocious deal with the European Commission (the “interoperability” aspect of it [1, 2, 3, 4]) initially went into negative territories, after citing the ‘Microsoft press’ that says:

First, Microsoft has committed to implement a range of important industry standards in its software, including Web standards in Internet Explorer. Our agreement also recognizes that standards are often complex, and sometimes imprecise or even incomplete. To account for that, we will publicly document how we have implemented relevant standards so the information is readily available to all software developers. Our customers can reap the benefits of some of this work already in the beta version of Microsoft Office 2010, available today, which enables users to save and open documents in a variety of industry standard formats. These formats include Open XML (a standard originally sponsored by Microsoft) and the Open Document Format (a standard originally sponsored by competitors to Microsoft)….We also are posting our protocol documentation on the Internet, so any developer can access it easily without entering into a license with Microsoft.

Quoting Todd Bishop/Brad Smith from the Microsoft-funded Microsoft blog, Jones mocks the part which says: ‘“The most important question that we look at is whether a feature has APIs, or application programming interfaces, that are going to be important to the developers of Windows applications,” explained Brad Smith, Microsoft’s general counsel, in an interview with TechFlash this morning. “The browser is such a piece of software today. It has APIs that other applications call. That’s one reason we included the browser as part of Windows in the late 1990s. I think there was a recognition of the value that this creates for the industry as a whole by the courts in the United States and now the European Commission, in effect, today, because an important part of the announcement today is that Internet Explorer will remain a part of Windows, including in Europe.”‘

Jones writes: “Recognition of the value… hahahaha. Pass out laughing. But first I will point out that this seems to be an indication of what the settlement is about from Microsoft’s standpoint.”

Opera expected this to happen, but it is funny how Microsoft views its role. Last year it was Craig Mundie (Microsoft’s Chief Strategy Officer and lobbyist [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]) who said: “Google Owes Its Business To Us”

Does Microsoft really want people to believe that there would be no computers without Microsoft?

As a side note, Jones also remarked on the Moonlight news, highlighting the following important bit:

There is one catch, however.

The new patent covenant extension is only for Moonlight and does not extend to the full Mono project, which is Novell’s implementation of Microsoft’s .NET framework. Novell updated Mono to version 2.6 this week. As a result, the agreement covers only the subset of Mono that comes as a part of Moonlight. “This patent covenant only applies to Moonlight and the version of Mono that ships with Moonlight,” Goldfarb said.

So the problems with Mono basically remain and Moonlight is still Novell-only software for other reasons. One piece of software that only Novell customers can use safely (that would Banshee) is latching onto Docky now.

No need for a massive evolution from the Gnome-Do Banshee control plug-in, this is a nice addition for Banshee users.

It’s a bit like Telepathy. Mono is grabbing all sort of other parts of GNOME, just like moss in a highly-fertilised garden. Novell is paying for this and Microsoft does too (it pays Novell).

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