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02.04.18

PTAB Watch: Paul Hastings’ Naveen Modi, Worlds Inc. and RPX on Trolls in Semiconductors Market (Rambus/Hardware Patents)

Posted in Hardware, Patents at 5:35 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Chipset

Summary: The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) increasingly gets involved even in cases where trolls tread on patent pools; Rambus appears to be on the rise again, but only as a patent parasite

THE PTAB is today’s focus because it’s probably the most common facilitator the USPTO will ever have for invalidating software patents. Courts do not get involved as often as PTAB, at least not in the context of patents on software. The anti-PTAB lobby, which defends patent trolls and seems to be Koch-backed (at least in part), isn’t particularly happy to say the least…

Top parties in US district courts and at the PTAB were named a few days ago by Managing IP, but sadly that’s behind a paywall. All we can see is this:

Managing IP analyses the most important trends and cases that will impact US patent disputes in 2018, both in district courts and at the PTAB. We also reveal the top entities and law firms for lawsuits and petitions filed in both forums last year

“Most Active Attorneys in IPR” were also named/published some days ago and an IAM writer said that “Paul Hastings’ Naveen Modi most active IPR lawyer with 240. Say he has charged an average of $100k per review (which is on the low end) then that’s a $24m book of IPR biz over last 5 years.”

This is one of those cases where patent lawyers profit from bogus patents, ripping people off when the USPTO is overgranting.

Some days ago we became aware of this Worlds Inc. press release. They’re going after PTAB IPRs in an effort to deal with questionable patents. From the press release:

Worlds Inc. (OTCQB:WDDD) investors have chosen to exercise their warrants per the terms of the funding of the Inter Partes Review (IPR) appeal as reported in January 2017. The exercise of the warrants will provide Worlds with $875,000 to the balance sheet.

[...]

Worlds is obligated under the terms of the funding agreement to convert these warrants when its investors/shareholders elect to convert. By adding these funds to its balance sheet, Worlds is now in a financially stronger position to pursue potential infringers of its patents. Once a definitive determination on potential infringers is reached, Worlds intends to begin additional enforcement actions.

RPX was mentioned over a week ago by Reuters. RPX is collapsing and its sale seems likely. RPX sought to challenge trolls, but eventually it might be owned by trolls.

RPX has just mentioned the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) in this article about hardware (generically titled “Semiconductors”). To quote: “In December 2017, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) saw a new petition for IPR, institution decisions, and final decisions, in multiple NPE campaigns in the Semiconductors market sector.”

We’re assuming that RPX is attempting to untangle the maze which is semiconductor patents (companies like Intel have plenty of those).

Rambus, a hardware company notorious for its troll-like activities, turns out to be little more than a pile patents now. Rambus, based on its accounting, is little more than a patent parasite if not a troll because almost all of its money comes purely from patents. As IAM put it, “Rambus reported revenues for the quarter of $101.9 million, up by a little more than $4 million year-on-year, and full year results of $393.1 million, an increase of just under $60 million from 2016. Royalties, including patent licensing, accounted for almost $78 million in Q4 and $289.5 million for the year overall.”

If about three quarters of the income comes from patents alone (rather than the production of something), what can one conclude? Maybe that’s the kind of “NPE” RPX was alluding to above. There are several of these, most notably Qualcomm.

01.20.18

Qualcomm/Broadcom/NXP Combination Would Become a Disastrous Patent Thicket Which Benefits Nobody

Posted in America, Antitrust, Asia, Europe, Hardware, Patents at 3:20 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Monopoly power merely harms the entire market where resources (e.g. pipes) cannot be shared

Monopoly power

Summary: Worried by the prospect of mega-mergers and takeovers which would put far too much market power (and monopoly through patents) in one place, governments and corporations speak out

THE CHIPSET/SILICON giants are becoming fewer and bigger. This means that centralisation of respective patents (with patent thickets which prevent fair competition) carries on. This is further exacerbated by some recent industry moves.

“As promoter of software patents and a patent bully with a long track record, Qualcomm wants an even broader or thicker patent thicket.”China, for a change, is standing up to evil patent bullies like Broadcom and Qualcomm; this was soon spun by IAM, which noted that “[w]hen Broadcom first went public with its audacious plan to buy-out Qualcomm, Microsoft and Google were reportedly among the first tech titans to object to the deal in private, citing concerns about a potential loss of innovation.”

Qualcomm has little to do with innovation; it’s all about taxation. As promoter of software patents and a patent bully with a long track record, Qualcomm wants an even broader or thicker patent thicket. According to Korean media, the “trade watchdog sets conditions for Qualcomm’s NXP takeover” — another takeover possibly in the making. To quote:

South Korea’s corporate watchdog said Thursday that United States-based chipmaker Qualcomm must make several commitments to get approval for its takeover of the global Dutch company NXP here, including the sale of NXP’s standard essential patents.

Qualcomm is infesting and driving up the price of almost everything. As noted the other day in relation to the above, “Qualcomm agreed to exclude certain near-field communication patents from the transaction and committed to allowing NXP to license those patents to third parties.”

“Qualcomm is infesting and driving up the price of almost everything.”The European Commission wrote about it as well some days ago. The opening of its statement sounded similar to Korea’s. To quote: “The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of NXP, based in the Netherlands, by Qualcomm of the US. The approval is conditional on full compliance with commitments offered by Qualcomm. Both firms are important players in the semiconductor industry.”

Going back to Broadcom, it turns out that it’s being investigated by the FTC right now. As Wall Street media put it the other day:

The Federal Trade Commission is investigating whether semiconductor company Broadcom Ltd. engaged in anticompetitive tactics in negotiations with customers, people familiar with the matter said.

Recently we covered Broadcom in relation to a patent case at the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC). The case arose from an appeal to PTAB and was mentioned in this “international report” at IAM a few days ago. It all started when “Broadcom filed an inter partes review petition which sought to review [patents of] Wi-Fi One,” as we covered at the time (we first took note of this feud about a year ago).

“In this particular case what we have is PTAB in the role of protecting the larger entity; it may sound bad on the surface, but if the underlying patent/s is/are not eligible, then it’s beneficial for justice and detrimental primarily to trolls.”All these latest articles about Wi-Fi One, LLC v Broadcom Corp. concern time-bar decisions. As one law firm has just put it: “While the Wi-Fi One decision is confined to the reviewability of the time bar under § 315(b), some believe that its rationale may extend to the reviewability of other issues. It remains to be seen how far the court will extend its reasoning, if at all, but we will keep you updated here on the AIA Blog when the court issues significant decisions.”

In this particular case what we have is PTAB in the role of protecting the larger entity; it may sound bad on the surface, but if the underlying patent/s is/are not eligible, then it’s beneficial for justice and detrimental primarily to trolls.

05.14.17

Industry Giants Challenge Qualcomm’s Patent Practices While the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Closely Examines Such Behavior

Posted in America, Antitrust, Apple, Hardware, Patents, Samsung at 3:10 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Qualcomm doesn’t do much but collect patent royalties

Qualcomm building
Photo credit: Coolcaesar

Summary: Scrutiny of Qualcomm’s patent aggression and coercion — scrutiny that can profoundly change the way software patents, SEPs and FRAND are viewed — as seen in various amicus briefs (amici) from industry giants that are affected

THE many patents granted primarily by the USPTO to Qualcomm continue to represent a threat to the productive industry, as we noted earlier this year [1, 2, 3, 4].

“Remember that it was a Samsung foe, Apple, which played a big role in this battle and has in fact stopped paying Qualcomm (which sent the stock nosediving).”Belatedly, companies are complaining and regulators take a closer look at Qualcomm’s behaviour. Even a Microsoft AstroTurfing/front group, Association for Competitive Technology (ACT), is going to intervene, based on Florian Müller, who wrote a couple of new posts late on a Friday [1, 2], having just scrutinised new documents.

“Intel’s brief in FTC v. Qualcomm is pretty good,” he wrote. “It was just too late for me to still comment on it yesterday. Will do so next week.”

He quotes from the brief: “For years Qualcomm has maintained an interlocking web of abusive patent & commercial practices that subverts competition on merits” (hypocritical for Intel to state that).

Here is what Samsung had to say. “Samsung just filed an amicus brief supporting the FTC against Qualcomm,” Müller noted, “explaining how it’s being harmed by QCOM’s conduct in two biz areas.”

From his post about it:

In today’s opposition to a Qualcomm motion to dismiss the FTC’s antitrust complaint, the FTC says “[o]ther chipmakers may not wish to sue Qualcomm for a number of reasons, including fear of countersuit for infringement, escalation, litigation fees, disrupted relationships with OEMs [...].” While all of that can affect a chipmaker’s calculus, the situation is far worse for device makers: they have to fear massive disruption should Qualcomm cease to supply its chipsets to them. Also, Qualcomm’s rebate deals (that effectively result in some patent royalties being paid back) appear to be tied to total abstention from any kind of antitrust action against Qualcomm. All in all, it’s like a strangehold on an entire industry.

Remember that it was a Samsung foe, Apple, which played a big role in this battle and has in fact stopped paying Qualcomm (which sent the stock nosediving). Here is some of the latest:

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has just responded to Qualcomm’s motion to dismiss its antitrust complaint in the Northern District of California….

We have studied some of the above and it certainly seems like most of the industry, not just the FTC, is eager to put an end to Qualcomm’s exploitation of software patents to make money out of nothing but “licensing”.

04.16.17

Apple’s Legal Actions Against Android and Against Qualcomm Could Eventually Weaken Patents at Two Levels

Posted in Apple, Courtroom, Hardware, Patents, RAND, Samsung at 8:42 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

…Hardware (chipsets) and software alike, with dubious software patents that accompany them, have made phones incredibly expensive

Phone and USPTO

Summary: By tackling the practices of Qualcomm and by dragging companies to court over ridiculous design patents (potential of blanket ban by the Supreme Court) Apple weakens the very business model it will need to rely on as its market diminishes, leaving it with nothing but patents

THE mobile market is worth a lot of money these days. The exact numbers depend on how it’s measured and what exactly gets included in the measure. But no doubt more and more people now turn to mobility. Many sales are made in it, both of devices and software (licensing). Apple’s sales are declining and many of the headlines we come across (when it comes to Apple at least) are about new patents and patent applications from Apple. Perhaps that’s just Apple’s vision/foresight of its future. It want to prey on OEMs that are actually shipping a lot of phones (Huawei for example). This is why Microsoft, for example, attacked Samsung in the courts — using software patents of course — and then virtually forced Samsung to become its vassal. It’s a strategy of coercion. A lot of patent battles are now focused/centered around the mobile market (connections, interfaces, touch-enabled devices, navigation and so on) as many companies try to turn a pile of patents into revenue without actually creating anything. Qualcomm is a good example of this.

“It’s a strategy of coercion.”Qualcomm's management seems growingly nervous about the antitrust action in various places as well as the lawsuits/complaints [1, 2], notably Apple‘s. The $815m BlackBerry arbitration, which was mentioned here the other day, gets a mention in patent maximalists’ sites and Florian Müller took note of it after we had sent him some links related to it. It seems possible, albeit it’s subjected to the Supreme Court’s instincts, that another Apple case against Android will reach the Supreme Court (SCOTUS). As Müller put it just before Easter (taking special note of the role of CCIA):

One organization that has previously supported Samsung against Apple, the Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA), appears to have decided not to get active again at this stage. But in case certiorari is granted, I wouldn’t be surprised to see CCIA get involved again. With respect to design patent damages, CCIA’s work was really great. But even CCIA may at some point experience such a thing as litigation fatigue: the Apple v. Samsung dispute is now six years old.

Samsung’s design patents-related petition was exceptional. It had tremendous support and, since it raised sort of a once-in-a-century type of issue, it was a slam dunk (to the extent that a cert petition can be a slam dunk at all, given overall stats). The fact that certain amici who supported Samsung on design patents aren’t on board this time doesn’t mean that the three issues raised last months aren’t also certworthy in their own ways and their own right.

We wrote about this case many times before and if it reaches SCOTUS, then we definitely expect the patents to be challenged and quite likely invalidated, as per the pattern of recent SCOTUS decisions on patents. If that happens, what will Apple be left with? Apple is the next Qualcomm.

02.28.17

More Hardware Companies Adopt Software Patents and Become Like Patent Trolls

Posted in Hardware, Patents at 7:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Intel too has been lobbying for software patents (and its employee Peter Detkin co-founded Intellectual Ventures)

“We cannot hope to own it all, so instead we should try to create the largest possible market and insert ourselves as a small tax on that market.”

Nathan Myhrvold, Microsoft at the time (now a patent troll at Intellectual Ventures)

Summary: A glance at the ‘trollisation’ of large companies that are tempted by the prospects of patent bullying, even if it’s known to be damaging to one’s brand and a distraction from productive activities

Softbank and Inventergy

Qualcomm’s software patent attacks were the subject of some recent articles of ours, e.g. [1, 2] and so was Softbank, which had just bought ARM from the UK (one of the biggest technology companies here). As we noted earlier this month, Softbank was potentially becoming a Japanese patent troll. It looks like it may be about to happen, primarily as a by-product of inheritance of longtime patent bullies.

As the trolls’ apologist put it earlier today:

It is not clear what role, if any, Fortress played in the decision to file the suit against Apple, but it’s notable that such a high-profile case has been filed so close to the restructuring vote. The investment giant now looks set to become a significant force in the assertion market just as it is in the process of being taken over by Softbank, the Japanese tech and telecoms giant, in a $3.3 billion deal.

Maybe it’s time for Softbank to just abandon negotiations with Inventergy and dump this troll altogether. When firms resort to this kind of behaviour it is often a sign of misery and desperation. Softbank, if it was to allow itself to become another Qualcomm, would tarnish ARM’s powerful and highly valuable brand.

BlackBerry and Nokia

Speaking of large companies that flirt with patent trolling, the Canadian press has belatedly realised that Canadian giant BlackBerry is now effectively (although only in part) a patent troll. Earlier today it wrote, right there in the headline in fact, that “BlackBerry may have a brighter future as patent troll than as a software developer” and to quote the opening sentence: “BlackBerry Ltd. (BBRY), the former smartphone and software technology developer run by CEO John Chen, may have a brighter future as patent troll than as a software developer with a portfolio of some 44,000 patents worldwide, many of which have been described by Envision IP as high quality based on reverse citations.”

“Speaking of large companies that flirt with patent trolling, the Canadian press has belatedly realised that Canadian giant BlackBerry is now effectively (although only in part) a patent troll.”Several months ago we showed that even corporate media called BlackBerry a "patent troll". Another new article speaks of how one large troll attacks another, as we pointed out a few weeks ago. This new report says that “Blackberry And Nokia ]are] In Court over patent infringement issues. BlackBerry is asking Nokia to obtain license for use of as many as 11 patents” (Nokia will probably demand something similar from BlackBerry, if it still makes any phones by then).

USAA

In other news from today — news that was quite widely spread in fact [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] — in spite of absence of software patents in India USAA managed to get an Indian firm to swallow the bait. As one report put it: “San Antonio-based financial services company USAA inked a deal with a software development firm in India to exclusively license some of its patented technology, which will be used to create new commercial software.

“India is a smart choice for such things because India barely has any patent trolls and it certainly does not tolerate patents lawsuits over software development.”“Persistent Systems plans to use the patents and security algorithms USAA developed to detect fraudulent activity on its customers’ accounts using an authentication system that considers risk and previous activity — beyond passwords and even biometric scanning.”

Whether or not this was patented, in India these patents have no potency, unless the eventual product is to be exported to the US, at which point injunctions can be pursued. But the point of the matter is, did the media need to focus so much on these software patents? It sounds as though USAA just merely contracted/hired some software developers to implement things. India is a smart choice for such things because India barely has any patent trolls and it certainly does not tolerate patents lawsuits over software development. We’ll say more about India in our next post.

02.07.17

ITC and FTC Weigh in on Competition/Antitrust and the Patents-in-Standards Question

Posted in America, Antitrust, Hardware, Patents, RAND, Standard at 5:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Related to the FRAND/RAND debates but currently focused on hardware

No trespassing

Summary: Regulatory agencies in the US (International/Federal Trade Commission) grapple with anticompetitive aspects of patents

IN PREVIOUS years we wrote a great deal about the ITC. It’s the US-centric agency (not “International” as its name conveniently and misleadingly suggests) that helps embargo rivals from abroad; it does so with patents as a tool/blunt instrument.

The other day MIP wrote about what we can expect from the ITC in 2017, citing what it called the “first antitrust claim for 25 years.” To quote:

Highlights at the International Trade Commission in 2016 included the most Section 337 investigations since 2011, the first live hearing for a decade and the first antitrust claim for 25 years. Michael Loney asks ITC practitioners what trends they expect in 2017

What we have come to expect from the ITC (see past writings) is servitude to US corporations that control the political platform/establishment and public discourse. Disdain for ITC ‘justice’ is something they have come to deserve. Remember all those antitrust cases (EU, Korea and more) against Intel, whose offences are plenty and include patent aggression (not to mention lobbying for software patents)? Well, based on this new report, Intel’s arch-rival “AMD filed a legal complaint against a number of companies accusing them of infringing its patents covering graphics processing technologies. The company requested the United States International Trade Commission (US ITC) to investigate the matter and, if the ITC finds in their favor, ban products based on chips that infringe on AMD’s intellectual property rights.”

“What we have come to expect from the ITC (see past writings) is servitude to US corporations that control the political platform/establishment and public discourse.”ITC again. Guess in whose favour it is likely to rule? Even if many of these patents are applicable to or are required by industry standards…

Andy Updegrove spent a long time writing about anticompetitive aspects of standards with patents in them. He now says that a “Court Rules Standards Incorporated by Reference into Laws Need not be Free”. To quote: “When standards developed by the private sector become laws, should anyone be able to download a copy for free? At first blush, the answer seems too obvious to debate. But yesterday, a U.S. district court held otherwise, saying that the developer of a standard that has been “incorporated by reference” (IBR) into a law continues to have the right to enforce its copyright. It also confirmed the right to charge a reasonable fee for an IBR standard.”

“This is a case and opportunity for the FTC to show it has teeth; it’s also a case by which to squash software patents abuse, as some of the patents at the centre of these shakedowns are Qualcomm’s software patents.”The subject is contentious and hotly-debated these days, in particular because of Qualcomm, which faces lawsuits, antitrust investigations and so on. MIP, noting the latest development in China (covered here two weeks ago), wrote last week that the “FTC charged Qualcomm with practicing unfair methods of competition under Section 5(a) of the Federal Trade Commission Act. Meanwhile, Apple has sued the telecommunications company for $1 billion worth of rebated royalty fees that Apple says Qualcomm is withholding. Other trade commissions, such as Korea’s, have investigated and ruled against Qualcomm’s practices, and Apple has additionally sued the company in China.”

This is a case and opportunity for the FTC to show it has teeth; it’s also a case by which to squash software patents abuse, as some of the patents at the centre of these shakedowns are Qualcomm’s software patents.

Are regulatory bodies like the FTC and ITC likely to recognise that for the world to advance and develop we need standards that are not usable by billionaire corporations alone? Are they competition facilitators or merely gatekeepers (wolves in sheep’s clothing)?

02.01.16

UEFI is Bricking PCs, Yet Again

Posted in GNU/Linux, Hardware, Kernel at 12:07 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: A few remarks about a new defect which is starting to attract media attention this morning, serving to highlight the lesser-discussed dangers of UEFI/EFI

TECHRIGHTS has been a rather prominent longtime critic of UEFI. We even got invited to speak to the top executives behind UEFI, involving several people on a conference call. They were hoping to silence/suppress my criticism by speaking to me for about an hour, but they didn’t have anything substantial to say in order for me to change my mind. In fact, they only revealed other issues (throughout the conversation) which I later wrote about. The Wiki has plenty of details about that and it also covers examples or remote bricking of PCs (via UEFI). Truly nasty if not malicious, too.

“Stuff like UEFI also gives governments stricter controls over people (like dissidents).”There is a newly-discovered issue involving systemd and EFI/UEFI. This has shown up in several prominent online forums and also in bug reports for almost a week (or longer). I had mentioned it online for a while, but only earlier today did I decide I have enough of a confirmation regarding this severe problem. It is now mentioned in news sites, too [1,2,3], so I wanted to very quickly remark on it (due to lack of time), noting that here again we have an example of remote bricking by means of UEFI — a subject that the NSA previously warned about (accusing China, warning that it had attempted to do something similar).

Don’t accept UEFI. Like DRM, TPM and many other malicious ‘features’, it is intended to give corporations control over the users, rather than enable the users to control their computers better. Stuff like UEFI also gives governments stricter controls over people (like dissidents).

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. In A UEFI World, “rm -rf /” Can Brick Your System

    Running rm -rf / on any UEFI Linux distribution can potentially perma-brick your system.

    As a public service announcement, recursively removing all of your files from / is no longer recommended. On UEFI distributions by default where EFI variables are accessible via /sys, this can now mean trashing your UEFI implementation.

  2. Running a single delete command in Linux can permanently brick some laptops

    It’s fairly stupid to run such a command, but usually not destructive to anything but the Linux installation. However, as it turns out, on MSI laptops it’s possible to completely wipe the EFI boot partition from inside Linux.

  3. Running “rm -rf /” Is Now Bricking UEFI Based Linux Systems

    Running rm -rf / on any UEFI Linux distro can potentially perma-brick your system, Windows PCs also vulnerable

01.17.16

Anti-Competitive and Anti-Choice: the ‘New’ Microsoft Reveals New Abusive Policies

Posted in GNU/Linux, Hardware, Microsoft, Vista 10, Windows at 6:28 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Can’t compete? Then cheat…

“I’m thinking of hitting the OEMs harder than in the past with anti-Linux. … they should do a delicate dance”

Joachim Kempin, Microsoft OEM Chief

Two locks

Summary: After scheming to make new hardware incapable of booting GNU/Linux (in the name of UEFI ‘security) the company now attempts to tie up hardware (processors) with malicious new malware called Windows 10 (more like Vista 10, with the user-hostile ‘features’ of Vista)

“Want Freedom To Choose Your Hardware? Choose GNU/Linux.”

That’s the message from Robert Pogson. Some days ago we became aware of a nasty little scheme from Microsoft. The abusive monopolist, Microsoft, is calling monopoly abuse “innovation”. In additional to more DRM and antifeatures, including mass surveillance in real time, the company goes further as “Upcoming Intel And AMD CPUs Will ONLY Support Windows 10,” to quote FOSS Bytes. “In the latest change to its update policy,” wrote the author, “Microsoft has announced that older versions of Windows like Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 will lose support on the Intel 6th generation Core processors, also known as Intel Skylake. So, if you have just bought a new PC, you should consider upgrading to Windows 10 within the next 18 months.”

“Does anyone really think there is a ‘new’ Microsoft which is benevolent?”And Microsoft later expresses shock that people generally dislike it, some more than others.

Microsoft Peter shows how, after UEFI lockout of GNU/Linux (which he wrote about last year, arguably breaking the news), the historically abusive Intel helps Microsoft impose NSA-friendly spyware on everyone. “Microsoft Will Not Support Upcoming Processors Except On Windows 10,” says another report and “New hardware must have the latest Windows,” wrote a Microsoft booster. Microsoft’s influence over OEMs may be diminishing, the development teams may be shrinking (based on our confidential sources they are!), so the company is now limiting the scope of its operating system using hardware manufacturers/chipmakers, i.e. doing exactly the opposite of Linux (whose hardware support is always broadening).

Moreover, as revealed by this new report from The Register, Microsoft is really trying to piss people off and make Vista 10 synonymous with malware. Watch what they are doing right now:

Microsoft’s relentless campaign to push Windows 10 onto every PC on the planet knows no bounds: now business desktops will be nagged to upgrade.

When Redmond started quietly installing Windows 10 on computers via Windows Update, it was aimed at getting home users off Windows 7 and 8. If you were using Windows Pro or Enterprise, or managed your machines using a domain, you weren’t supposed to be pestered with dialog boxes offering the free upgrade.

[...]

Microsoft claims it’s doing this because many small businesses – the sort of organizations that run Windows Pro, use a domain, but leave automatic updates on – want an easy way to install the new operating system. If companies really want this software, you’d think they’d install it themselves – or opt in for it, rather than having to opt out repeatedly.

You can try your luck following these instructions to halt the upgrade – until Microsoft changes the rules again. Windows Enterprise edition in large corporations will avoid the automatic, virtually mandatory, upgrade.

Does anyone really think there is a ‘new’ Microsoft which is benevolent? iophk has been writing to us for a number of days about this kind of topic. He said quite a lot of things about what Microsoft plans to do to R right now (or some time in the near future).

“Attacks against R continue with “Microsoft R Open {sic}”,” he said, “with the announcement of vaporware” (we wrote about this some days ago).

“Stewart Alsop, industry gadfly, presented Gates with the “Golden Vaporware” award, saying, “The delay of Windows was all part of a secret plan to have Bill turn thirty before it shipped.”

Barbarians Led by Bill Gates, a book composed
by the daughter of Microsoft’s PR mogul

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