06.11.08

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Neelie Kroes Dismisses Novell-type Intraoperability with Microsoft

Posted in Antitrust, Europe, Interoperability, Microsoft, Novell, Patents at 4:01 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Neelie Kroes

“Where interoperability information is protected as a trade secret, there may be a lot of truth in the saying that the information is valuable because it is secret, rather than being secret because it is valuable… we should only standardize when there are demonstrable benefits, and we should not rush to standardize on a particular technology too early… I fail to see the interest of customers in including proprietary technology in standards when there are no clear and demonstrable benefits over non-proprietary alternatives.”

Neelie Kroes

It has been no secret that Novell became an ally in Microsoft's fight against open protocols and open formats. For selfish reasons, Novell chose to become a sidekick in Microsoft’s monopoly and rely on nothing more than Microsoft's promises. Interoperability is just a hoax and a weasel word. It’s about bringing revenue to Microsoft.

Lots of very interesting points were raised throughout Neelie Kroes’ latest speech, including some of the accompanying remarks from Groklaw. Mind the following important correction:

Why is she lauding software patents when Europe doesn’t for the most part recognize them? And in software, there is no “emerge from markets” because Microsoft owns the market, and not necessarily because it’s the best choice or even *a* choice. Just try to buy a computer without Windows.

At the end of the day, it’s the bits quoted at the top that are probably most telling. Segregation with trade secrets, Novell/Microsoft-style, is not the way to go.

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