09.14.09

Microsoft Runs Away from the Press After Trying to Have GNU/Linux Sued by Proxy

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, OIN, Patents at 3:35 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Lawsuit by proxy

Summary: Microsoft cannot deny trying to “screw Linux” by proxy; Miguel de Icaza’s new role at Microsoft revisited

Microsoft’s shameful behaviour may not be a violation of American law, but for this despicable pattern of behaviour, an embargo or a boycott would only be reasonable. Microsoft got caught trying to sue its competitor, GNU/Linux, by proxy [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]. This is not some so-called “conspiracy theory” and Microsoft, which got caught red-handed, is doing everything it can to avoid and to distract. It is possible, as we argued yesterday, that the CodePlex Foundation announcement was made specifically as a strategic tool for altering the centre of debate. This also comes shortly after a leak showed Microsoft attacking GNU/Linux in retail [1, 2, 3, 4].

Information Week has apparently attempted to reach Microsoft for a comment. Surprise, surprise… everyone at Microsoft must be on a September vacation because the company arrogantly refuses to reply to important questions.

Microsoft did not respond to a specific question about whether it had labeled some of the patents as “Linux-focused.” It didn’t respond by press time to a follow up question on whether its marketing material included suggested targets for patent claims.

[...]

Microsoft acquired the 22 patents several years ago in a larger deal with SGI, the former Silicon Graphics Inc., and the patents have been labeled by some sources as only concerning 3D graphics. OIN CEO Bergelt said that’s not correct. The patents are more valuable than that. Some of them affect core Linux operations, he said.

At Ziff Davis (Microsoft partner [1, 2]), Darryl Taft is yanking many repetitive messages to already move away to another superficial topic. Check out his latest proportional headlines:

  1. Microsoft: The Great Open-Source Advocate?
  2. Microsoft Open-Source Efforts to Go ‘Mainstream`

The CodePlex Foundation is a Windows-oriented farce, accommodating those whose interests are not GNU/Linux. “Perfect timing,” writes Pamela Jones about the CodePlex Foundation announcement. “[It's] about the The same week Microsoft gets caught trying to secretly torpedo Linux with patent trolls, it opens and funds its very own “open source” foundation, where all those stupid enough to trust Microsoft can go and get eaten alive, like the jury just said that i4i was. And all that sharing should be just perfect for new patents for Microsoft. Hey. Gotta innovate, ya know. And do you think Microsoft cares if code is open source, as long as it’s patented, by Microsoft, so you have to pay them to actually use it? Only Miguel can imagine this can possibly work out, and sure enough, there he is, on the Microsoft-heavy board. Sam Ramji gets to explain the patent troll thingie, I guess, since he’s heading up this totally unnecessary “open source” entity. I can’t wait to hear him explain exactly what Microsoft had in mind. Good luck, fellas, and may it work out for you just as I imagine it will. Mind if I ask you a question? Just how stupid do you think we are?”

“And do you think Microsoft cares if code is open source, as long as it’s patented, by Microsoft, so you have to pay them to actually use it?”
      –Pamela Jones
It was shortly afterwards that Jones discovered Ramji was leaving. Considering the fact that Ramji was put in the board ahead of time and announced his resignation shortly afterwards (duty in absentia), it seems likely that all those recent events — ones where Microsoft brutally attacked Free software — led him to this decision. But not to worry; Microsoft has already found people who are more than keen on trashing GNU/Linux, people like Miguel de Icaza. In my conversations with him in USENET he seems happy enough to say that GNU/Linux has a “minuscule” market share (it hasn’t, that’s just a Microsoft talking point) and he’s all cool with words like “freetard”.

Had de Icaza not been associated with some FOSS history, it would be easy to mistake him for a Microsoft technical evangelist. His latest, so-called ‘contribution’ to FOSS is a Microsoft patents-ridden framework that makes Microsoft stronger — one that seems to be adopted by former Microsoft employees like MindTouch and Collier. Both users and developers of GNU/Linux reject Mono and it’s easy to see why. Here is the latest:

Sometimes automake is no good… Mono projects

[...]

It’s not that I just don’t like the way the Makefiles are written, but factoring in the fact that automake does not support C#/Mono natively, you get to the point where:

* the support for dependencies is just not there;
* automake is designed to support language where a source file is translated into an object file, and then linked; C# does not work in that way since all the source files are given when building a single assembly;
* the support for various flags variables is just pointless with the way the compiler work.

I guess there are mostly two reasons why autotools are still used by C#/Mono based projects, the first is that it integrates well when you also have some native extensions, like F-Spot has, and the latter is that it provides at least some level of boilerplate code.

Followers of de Icaza will hopefully realise that they are following a worker of Microsoft, a company that merely attacks GNU/Linux.

“We could refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop with Moonlight”

Miguel de Icaza

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This post is also available in Gemini over at:

gemini://gemini.techrights.org/2009/09/14/microsoft-thuggery-running-away/

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