Bonum Certa Men Certa

Sam Ramji, the Man Who Wants to Politely Steal from GNU/Linux

Novell still leans towards Microsoft, too

Gavin Clarke is at it again. He does yet another Ramji/Microsoft glorification piece. This time, for a change, he adds this:

"We need to engage with Windows administrators - this stuff runs on Windows," Ramji said.

For more from Ramji on how Microsoft surrendered sovereignty to the Open Source Initiative, on chief executive Steve Ballmer's apparent rapprochement with open source - just don't mention the "L" word - and how Microsoft won't be open sourcing Windows, you can download George's 11 minute podcast here.


Remember what Microsoft has in mind. As Steve Ballmer once shouted (and even damaged his vocal chords in the process), it's "Windows Windows Windows".

The Ramji/Clarke-like series isn't an isolated incident and it never stops. Remember how Microsoft raves about its control of the press and its ability to push so-called (pseudo) 'open source' figures into the headlines. It even says so in a job description.

John Fontana does Ramji another glorifying piece, calling him a "guru". And then there's this:

Then it turned ugly.

The first questioner from the audience wanted to know what it would take for Microsoft not to claim patent infringement violations in open source code.

His inquiry was followed by whoops, whistles and thunderous applause.

The next question was about trust, as in why should we trust you this time? And the next referenced what the questioner called the "Office Open XML debacle" and accused Microsoft of using its power to buy international standards.


To explain what has happened here, consider this: Microsoft attacks Free software at the back and uses people like Ramji as a punch bag to absorb criticism and make critics of Microsoft look ugly (because, hey, Ramji didn't say anything to aggravate, did he?). For similar reasons, female representatives are sometimes used to mitigate a verbal assault. It was a similar situation in OSBC 2008 [1, 2, 3, 4, 5].

Here is what Pamela Jones wrote recently about Microsoft's attempts to bury memories of the OOXML fiasco:

Now, when it looks like the world really does want ODF instead of OOXML, surrogates are sending a dual message -- first, that ODF has won, so OOXML isn't worth fighting any more (and anyone who does is an "extremist" anti-Microsoft whiner), and two, that OASIS isn't able to do a good job with ODF, so the same folks who brought you OOXML should take it over.


In the same vein, the message Microsoft delivers to us now is that Microsoft just loves open source and if someone complains about it (or -- God forbid -- insults 'poor Ramji'), then that someone is "an "extremist" anti-Microsoft whiner," to repeat the wording used above. It's a moral shield which used to ensure that the Trojan horse can penetrate the very centre of Open Source City and then change its governance.

There is actually a lot more of the same in ODF/OOXML. Alex Brown [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21], for instance, played innocent a while ago by issuing an apologetic press release. Microsoft pulled the same type of stunt. The purpose was to shut up critics and make them look bad by pretending that Microsoft had already lost.

“The purpose was to shut up critics and make them look bad by pretending that Microsoft had already lost.”As Groklaw showed some hours ago, Microsoft lied. It was self-serving double-speak. Pamela Jones wrote: "If you believed the story put out that "ODF has won", you may be in for a surprise. ZDNet Asia has some quotes from Oliver Bell, Microsoft Asia-Pacific's regional technology officer, a CompTIA person, and a sales guy there, all touting OOXML as the dominant choice, due to it allegedly being the default format in Word. I'll show you one example, but you'll find it all of interest. Of course, what is available in Word is not the ISO format OOXML, despite what this article says."

"CompTIA," eh? Does it not matter who pays the wages there?

Also on the same subject, Novell continues bragging about its own version of OpenOffice.org. It won't say out loud (with rare exceptions that it's only for Novell's paying customers. for whom it claims to have paid Microsoft for 'protection\. Remember that this thing is filled with Mono hooks, VBA, and OOXML. Novell even makes the Windows version better than the GNU/Linux version. It was a promise made in the agreement between Ron Hovsepian and Steve Ballmer. Sun has many reasons to be displeased. Novell is with Microsoft. Novell supports Microsoft technologies like .NET and OOXML and nothing will change.

Ron Hovsepian and Steve Ballmer

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