EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

01.30.16

Guest Article: Introduction to Microsoft’s Growing Role in the R Project Through the Linux Foundation and E.E.E.

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 7:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Can Microsoft bury R like it so often does after E.E.E.?

R Project

Summary: Concerns about E.E.E. (embrace, extend, extinguish) by Microsoft, which this time targets science and a lot of schools (many young people)

THIS article deals with an important topic that we recently mentioned but have not had time to delve deeper into. Over the past fortnight we corresponded with people and debated in the IRC channels all sorts of possibilities. There are different speculations from various people about Microsoft’s latest E.E.E. (embrace, extend, extinguish) moves. One of our contributors, iophk, sent us the following executive summary regarding the R project.


I’ve looked and this is what I’ve found about R:

The R Project is protected by the GPL in parts and the LGPL for the rest. It is owned by the R Foundation. Further, it is an official GNU project: “R is an official part of the Free Software Foundation’s GNU project, and the R Foundation has similar goals to other open source software foundations like the Apache Foundation or the GNOME Foundation.”

It is developed by the R Development Core Team, which lists its individual members but not their organizational affiliation.

That base seems strong.

In contrast, the R Consortium is arranged by the Linux Foundation and has Microsoft as a founding member with representation on the board. It also contains TIBCO which is a past Microsoft partner but not currently.

TIBCO is reimplementing R as proprietary software.

But it appears, if I read correctly, that R Foundation members are members in the R Consortium as well, if they are not over burdened by the extra work.

The R Consortium lists support of the R Foundation as a goal, but there is a lot of wiggle room in the other goals.

The Linux Foundation can be considered an opponent of desktop Linux, as can Microsoft, which is also antagonistic to the GPL. Perhaps both are. The Linux Foundation’s recent move to eliminate community representation from the board can be interpreted by some as a move against the GPL. Being a Platinum Member, Microsoft is on the technical Infrastructure Steering Committee (ISC) of the R Consortium, which among other things determines APIs.

The R Consortium focuses exclusively on the useR! conference. The R Project itself supports two conferences, useR! and DSC. The former is the main one.

The media has been writing up Microsoft Revolution Analytics, but Mango-Solutions* is out there, too.

R itself might be safe, but it could get covered over in the media. I guess the main vectors might be E.E.E. via Revolution Analytics** products and entryism (E.E.E. with staff) for useR! and the R Consortium.
________
* Mango-Solutions seems OK. I can’t find financial data for either it or Revolution Analytics.
** As of 2012, Revolution Analytics was still declining to report its revenue, could be quite small then. whois information for the domain “revolutionanalytics.com” is cloaked; other domains like “inside-r.org” show a Mountainview, CA address. FWIW, Microsoft historically buys weak/weakest companies e.g. where FrontPage came from.


Time will tell if Microsoft can make R a Windows/OOXML/.NET ‘thing’ and if so, to what degree…

As will be made evident from IRC logs (when they are published), there are other FOSS project being subjected to E.E.E. by Microsoft right now.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

A Single Comment

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    January 30, 2016 at 1:25 pm

    Gravatar

    R will probably do ok if the users and the R Foundation can take a warning from what M$ tried with “extending” Java and work to prevent a recurrence. Steer clear of “Microsoft R Open” and follow GNU R to future-proof statistical work.

    For background on what they tried against Java, skim down to the part about “result is or the impact is that what was once sort of community development property, the work of the industry and industry participants is appropriated essentially, is taken over by Microsoft.” in United States v Microsoft. “Plaintiffs’ Joint Proposed Finding of Fact.” Redacted Public Version. Civil Action No. 98-1233 (TPJ) United States Department of Justice:
    http://www.justice.gov/atr/us-v-microsoft-proposed-findings-fact

    and here about “extending”
    http://groklaw.net/staticpages/index.php?page=ComesExhN05#E2403

    If they follow the usual pattern, M$ will try to saturate, diffuse, and confuse the issues.

What Else is New


  1. Links 18/9/2019: Fedora Linux 31 Beta, PCLinuxOS 2019.09 Update

    Links for the day



  2. Links 17/9/2019: CentOS 7.7 and Funtoo Linux 1.4 Released

    Links for the day



  3. EPO is Not European

    Internationalists and patent trolls are those who stand to benefit from the 'globalisation' of low-quality and law-breaking patents such as patents on algorithms, nature and life itself; the EPO isn't equipped to serve its original goals anymore



  4. The EPO's Central Staff Committee and SUEPO (Staff Union) Respond to “Fascist Bills” Supported by EPO President António Campinos

    Raw material pertaining to the latest Campinos "scandal"; what Campinos said, what the Central Staff Committee (CSC) said, and what SUEPO said



  5. Storm Brewing in the European Patent Office After a Hot Summer

    Things aren't rosy in EPOnia (to say the least); in fact, things have been getting a lot worse lately, but the public wouldn't know judging by what media tells the public (almost nothing)



  6. Why I Once Called for Richard Stallman to Step Down

    Guest post from the developer who recently authored "Getting Stallman Wrong Means Getting The 21st Century Wrong"



  7. As Richard Stallman Resigns Let's Consider Why GNU/Linux Without Stallman and Torvalds Would be a Victory to Microsoft

    Stallman has been ejected after a lot of intentionally misleading press coverage; this is a dark day for Software Freedom



  8. Links 16/9/2019: GNU Linux-libre 5.3, GNU World Order 13×38, Vista 10 Breaks Itself Again

    Links for the day



  9. Links 16/9/2019: Qt Quick on Vulkan, Metal, and Direct3D; BlackWeb 1.2 Reviewed

    Links for the day



  10. Richard Stallman's Controversial Views Are Nothing New and They Distract From Bill Gates' Vastly Worse Role

    It's easier to attack Richard Stallman (RMS) using politics (than using his views on software) and media focus on Stallman's personal views on sexuality bears some resemblance to the push against Linus Torvalds, which leans largely on the false perception that he is sexist, rude and intolerant



  11. Links 16/9/2019: Linux 5.3, EasyOS Releases, Media Backlash Against RMS

    Links for the day



  12. Openwashing Report on Open Networking Foundation (ONF): When Open Source Means Collaboration Among Giant Spying Companies

    Massive telecommunications oligopolies (telecoms) are being described as ethical and responsible by means of openwashing; they even have their own front groups for that obscene mischaracterisation and ONF is one of those



  13. 'Open Source' You Cannot Run Without Renting or 'Licensing' Windows From Microsoft

    When so-called ‘open source’ programs strictly require Vista 10 (or similar) to run, how open are they really and does that not redefine the nature of Open Source while betraying everything Free/libre software stands for?



  14. All About Control: Microsoft is Not Open Source But an Open Source Censor/Spy and GitHub/LinkedIn/Skype Are Its Proprietary Censorship/Surveillance Tools

    All the big companies which Microsoft bought in recent years are proprietary software and all of the company’s big products remain proprietary software; all that “Open Source” is to Microsoft is “something to control and censor“



  15. The Sad State of GNU/Linux News Sites

    The ‘media coup’ of corporate giants (that claim to be 'friends') means that history of GNU/Linux is being distorted and lied about; it also explains prevalent lies such as "Microsoft loves Linux" and denial of GNU/Free software



  16. EPO President Along With Bristows, Managing IP and Other Team UPC Boosters Are Lobbying for Software Patents in Clear and Direct Violation of the EPC

    A calm interpretation of the latest wave of lobbying from litigation professionals, i.e. people who profit when there are lots of patent disputes and even expensive lawsuits which may be totally frivolous (for example, based upon fake patents that aren't EPC-compliant)



  17. Links 15/9/2019: Radeon ROCm 2.7.2, KDE Frameworks 5.62.0, PineTime and Bison 3.4.2

    Links for the day



  18. Illegal/Invalid Patents (IPs) Have Become the 'Norm' in Europe

    Normalisation of invalid patents (granted by the EPO in defiance of the EPC) is a serious problem, but patent law firms continue to exploit that while this whole 'patent bubble' lasts (apparently the number of applications will continue to decrease because the perceived value of European Patents diminishes)



  19. Patent Maximalists, Orbiting the European Patent Office, Work to 'Globalise' a System of Monopolies on Everything

    Monopolies on just about everything are being granted in defiance of the EPC and there are those looking to make this violation ‘unitary’, even worldwide if not just EU-wide



  20. Unitary Patent (UPC) Promotion by Team Battistelli 'Metastasising' in Private Law Firms

    The EPO's Albert Keyack (Team Battistelli) is now in Team UPC as Vice President of Kilburn & Strode LLP; he already fills the media with lies about the UPC, as one can expect



  21. Microsoft Targets GNU/Linux Advocates With Phony Charm Offensives and Fake 'Love'

    The ways Microsoft depresses GNU/Linux advocacy and discourages enthusiasm for Software Freedom is not hard to see; it's worth considering and understanding some of these tactics (mostly assimilation-centric and love-themed), which can otherwise go unnoticed



  22. Proprietary Software Giants Tell Open Source 'Communities' That Proprietary Software Giants Are 'Friends'

    The openwashing services of the so-called 'Linux' Foundation are working; companies that are inherently against Open Source are being called "Open" and some people are willing to swallow this bait (so-called 'compromise' which is actually surrender to proprietary software regimes)



  23. Microsoft Pays the Linux Foundation for Academy Software Foundation, Which the Linux Foundation is Outsourcing to Microsoft

    Microsoft has just bought some more seats and more control over Free/Open Source software; all it had to do was shell out some 'slush funds'



  24. Links 14/9/2019: SUSE CaaS Platform, Huawei Laptops With GNU/Linux

    Links for the day



  25. Links 13/9/2019: Catfish 1.4.10, GNOME Firmware 3.34.0 Release

    Links for the day



  26. Links 12/9/2019: GNU/Linux at Huawei, GNOME 3.34 Released

    Links for the day



  27. Links 12/9/2019: Manjaro 18.1 and KaOS 2019.09 Releases

    Links for the day



  28. EPO: Give Us Low-Quality Patent Applications, Patent Trolls Have Use for Those

    What good is the EPC when the EPO feels free to ignore it and nobody holds the EPO accountable for it? At the moment we're living in a post-EPC Europe where the only thing that counts is co-called 'products' (i.e. quantity, not quality).



  29. Coverage for Sponsors: What the Linux Foundation Does is Indistinguishable From Marketing Agencies' Functions

    The marketing agency that controls the name "Linux" is hardly showing any interest in technology or in journalism; it's just buying media coverage for sponsors and this is what it boils down to for the most part (at great expense)



  30. Watch Out, Linus Torvalds: Microsoft Bought Tons of Git Repositories and Now It Goes After Linux

    Microsoft reminds us how E.E.E. tactics work; Microsoft is just hijacking its competition and misleading the market (claiming the competition to be its own, having "extended" it Microsoft's way with proprietary code)


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts