Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:07 UTC, submitted by anonymous
Microsoft Software behemoth Microsoft could be one of the biggest losers from proposed license changes to the Linux operating system unveiled Wednesday. That's a possible outcome of updates to the license pushed by the FSF. The FSF wants to make mutually exclusive pacts such as the Novell-Microsoft open-source agreement a violation of the next iteration of the GNU GPL, the license that governs Linux use. "It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers," said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft's vice president of intellectual property and licensing.
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You are kidding, right?
by bolomkxxviii on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:30 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

Microsoft locks out competition every chance it gets. Now they are going to say it is unfortunate now that the shoe is on the other foot?

Reply Score: 5

RE: You are kidding, right?
by cjcox on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:36 UTC in reply to "You are kidding, right?"
cjcox Member since:
2006-12-21

While true, I don't think we've seen anything take on patents so directly. In the past, companies obtained patents just for such things as deal making... GPLv3 says no to that. GPLv2 was merely about preservation of code... which might be a tough pill for some companies to swallow... but GPLv3 extends it to restrict what companies can/cannot do with their patents (and in fact, without too much tie in to the code itself.. just be frank and honest about it all).

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: You are kidding, right?
by dylansmrjones on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:45 UTC in reply to "RE: You are kidding, right?"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Now, that's wrong.

The only difference in regard to patents between GPL2 and GPL3 is that GPL3 has an explicit clause against it, while GPL2 is merely implicit. But if you release code under the GPL2 using your patented code, then the patent is released under the GPL2 - for everybody to use (under the GPL2). The same goes for releasing it under GPL3. What _is_ the difference is certain DRM-restrictions and limitations on "we promise not to sue your customers"-deals.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: You are kidding, right?
by bornagainenguin on Fri 30th Mar 2007 04:40 UTC in reply to "RE: You are kidding, right?"
bornagainenguin Member since:
2005-08-07

No, the framers of the GPLv3 simply want to ensure senseless software patents on prior art don't cripple people's abilities to continue to code.

If it's a tough pill to swallow for those companies then they should look at the new GPLv3 regarding patents the same way they looked at GPLv2 with regarding code--as a way of contributing and benefiting without others profiting off of your work as they could under BSD...

--bornagainpenguin

Reply Score: 3

RE: You are kidding, right?
by twenex on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:38 UTC in reply to "You are kidding, right?"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

Just to be clear: the GPL3 is not meant to "lock out Microsoft"; it is meant to "lock out companies using classically Microsftian tactics". If Microsoft cease and desist using "classically Microsoftian tactics", they will be welcome to the party.

EDIT: Fixed blooper.

Edited 2007-03-29 22:39

Reply Score: 5

The only...
by dylansmrjones on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:42 UTC
dylansmrjones
Member since:
2005-10-02

benefit Microsoft cares about is the monetary benefit Microsoft can gain on dubious "patent" agreements.

Reply Score: 5

Diddums den
by twenex on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:43 UTC
twenex
Member since:
2006-04-21

It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers.

Bwahahah. Microsoft? Collaborate? Notwithstanding the fact that he probably meant to say "cooperation" ("collaboration" having negative connotations), considering the source that is the funniest statement I have read in quite a while.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Diddums den
by google_ninja on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:48 UTC in reply to "Diddums den"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Like EFI? or XML?

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Diddums den
by twenex on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Diddums den"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

Like EFI? or XML?

Er, what about them, exactly? EFI is a standard promoted by Intel (not only that, but in my opinion it is also far inferior in certain aspects to Open Firmware, which was already available and already a sort of standard); XML is a Web standard which Microsoft are attempting to shoehorn into a proprietary framework (as usual). "Must conform to the behaviour of obsolete proprietary Microsoft products", anyone?

However, let's talk about Samba now. How long has Samba been around? At least since Linux started to replace NT as a file server, by definition - and probably before that. Where were Microsoft's "interoperability" efforts, then?

So, given that, and the attempt to threaten anyone who distributes Linux and isn't Novell (one provision the illegality of which didn't need clarifying in GPLv3), we can see where this is heading: The one and only threat to interoperability with Microsoft is, was, and will be: Microsoft.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Diddums den
by Doc Pain on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Diddums den"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

"XML is a Web standard [...]"

No, it is a markup language, less complex than SGML. It is designed for multi purpose use. Yes, for web pages (HTML, XHTML), but as well for databases or even configuration files.

"[...] which Microsoft are attempting to shoehorn into a proprietary framework (as usual)."

As usual, of course. Why conform to existing standards? :-)

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: Diddums den
by twenex on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:28 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Diddums den"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

No, it is a markup language, less complex than SGML. It is designed for multi purpose use. Yes, for web pages (HTML, XHTML), but as well for databases or even configuration files.

I stand corrected.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Diddums den
by BluenoseJake on Fri 30th Mar 2007 00:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Diddums den"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

"At least since Linux started to replace NT as a file server"

Actually, I think most of what Linux has been replacing is Netware and old school Unix, Windows and Linux both have been gaining marketshare in the server room, but mostly at the expense of the dinosaurs and prop Unix. Now don't get me wrong, I think Linux makes a great fileserver, and most other types of servers too, but I don't think that it's gains are at MS's expense

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Diddums den
by twenex on Fri 30th Mar 2007 06:32 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Diddums den"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

Actually, I think most of what Linux has been replacing is Netware and old school Unix,

Whatever - it still needs the ability to share files over smb, act as a domain controller, etc. Which was my point.

Windows and Linux both have been gaining marketshare in the server room, but mostly at the expense of the dinosaurs and prop Unix.

Yes, and Linux has been gaining faster than Windows...

Now don't get me wrong, I think Linux makes a great fileserver, and most other types of servers too, but I don't think that it's gains are at MS's expense

Umm, ok...

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Diddums den
by Soulbender on Fri 30th Mar 2007 07:36 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Diddums den"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

"Yes, and Linux has been gaining faster than Windows... "

That's not the same as Linux gaining at the expense of Windows though. It might be but one does not automatically lead to the other.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Diddums den
by google_ninja on Fri 30th Mar 2007 03:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Diddums den"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

microsoft was part of the development of both EFI and XML. (and many others, im tired and those are the two that immediately come to me) Samba is a reverse engineered microsoft technology, as is mono. I never said anything about interoperability, microsoft is all about promoting their stack, but you were talking about collaberation, which is something totally different. Microsoft is on many standards boards, along with other industry heavy weights.

Reply Score: 1

would be fun
by maceto on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:44 UTC
maceto
Member since:
2005-07-06

if one looks at it this way, a humble guy from Finland would make the largest OS software company reach for money and desperate measures, who saw this coming 5 years ago? yes some said so, but who believed them? Microsoft did not think of OSS as a threat before 2003 there abouts.. not really, now there are doing deals, trying to be more open, loosing large accounts to OSS and so on.

Reply Score: 2

RE: would be fun
by dylansmrjones on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:46 UTC in reply to "would be fun"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

I was among those who saw it already 7 years ago. But I'm a geek so my opinion doesn't count ;)

Reply Score: 5

RE: would be fun
by Kroc on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:24 UTC in reply to "would be fun"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

It's not just one humble Fin guy anymore. The largest portion of contributions to Linux are made by massive corporations; all of whom are in competition with Microsoft in one way or another.

Reply Score: 5

RE: would be fun
by tristan on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:28 UTC in reply to "would be fun"
tristan Member since:
2006-02-01

if one looks at it this way, a humble guy from Finland would make the largest OS software company reach for money and desperate measures, who saw this coming 5 years ago? yes some said so, but who believed them? Microsoft did not think of OSS as a threat before 2003 there abouts.. not really, now there are doing deals, trying to be more open, loosing large accounts to OSS and so on.

Without wishing to sound like one of those boring FSF "call it GNU/Linux"-types... what's caused this is not "one humble guy from Finland" but many thousands of coders from all over the world, working on thousands of bits of free software. The "Linux" system is much bigger than just the kernel.

Also, since when has Linus been "humble"? ;)

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: would be fun
by jessta on Fri 30th Mar 2007 09:25 UTC in reply to "RE: would be fun"
jessta Member since:
2005-08-17

Also there is a good chance that changes made in GNU GPLv3 are not going to affect linux at all.
Linus has previously said that he won't re-license linux to GNU GPLv3 and even though he has stated that he is 'pretty pleased' with the new draft. He still seems to have some issues with it.

One of the main reasons not to refer to GNULinux as just Linux is to avoid confusion. The other being to respect the developers of the original userspace tools.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: would be fun
by B. Janssen on Fri 30th Mar 2007 09:29 UTC in reply to "RE: would be fun"
B. Janssen Member since:
2006-10-11

tristan: The "Linux" system is much bigger than just the kernel.

Agreed and that's just what the OP of this little thread overlooked. Microsoft or any other proprietary software company (e. g. Tivo) is not worried about Open Source Software, they have shown that they are perfectly able and willing to circumvent the provisions coming with OSS. Free and Open Source Software under the GPL3 on the other hand will hopefully not be so easy to subvert and that's why they are making such a noise.

The very opposition of Microsoft et al. to the new GPL3 is the best proof that the FSF is doing something right there.

Reply Score: 5

No news here
by Almafeta on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:46 UTC
Almafeta
Member since:
2007-02-22

Yet another article claiming Microsoft is losing ground/Microsoft is going down/Microsoft is losing market share/the Microsoftkiller has arrived.

Less political diatribes and more articles with actual information about operating systems, please.

Reply Score: 1

RE: No news here
by tristan on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:29 UTC in reply to "No news here"
tristan Member since:
2006-02-01

Less political diatribes and more articles with actual information about operating systems, please.

You mean "fewer".

Reply Score: 4

RE
by Kroc on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:10 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

The solution to software patents is not the GPL3, it's to just not have them at all (thank you Europe); so that neither person has the upper advantage. IMO The FSF trying to step above the patent system is just as bad as Microsoft trying to use it.

Reply Score: 5

RE
by poundsmack on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:29 UTC in reply to "RE"
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

completely doing away with patents isnt the answer either. if i develope and app (or god forbid an OS) I want to have the right to charge for it, licence it, and if others use the technology i have developed i belive it fair to collect revenue if thats how I want to market my product. I DO thoguh belive that large companies take advantage of there current patent situation (a patent on the progress bar, now thats not right). But at the same time there are always other ways to do things even if it means reinventing the wheel...

Reply Score: 1

RE
by Kroc on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:43 UTC in reply to "RE"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

That is what copyright is for.
A software patent is complete protection for an 'idea' - you don't even have to implement it. If software patents were available back then, I could have patented "a computer inteface to return to previous views" and nobody would be allowed to implement back buttons in their software. Now that would really have set the Internet back!

Reply Score: 5

RE
by WorknMan on Fri 30th Mar 2007 00:24 UTC in reply to "RE"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

That is what copyright is for.
A software patent is complete protection for an 'idea' - you don't even have to implement it. If software patents were available back then, I could have patented "a computer inteface to return to previous views" and nobody would be allowed to implement back buttons in their software. Now that would really have set the Internet back!


So does a codec (audo/video/whatever) fall under the realm of software? In other words, should a codec fall under copyright or patent?
IMHO, if you spend hundreds or thousands of dollar and/or man hours developing something like that, you deserve to be compensated for it monetarily. While some would choose to give their work away for the greater good of man, we're not all socialists ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE
by MollyC on Fri 30th Mar 2007 03:14 UTC in reply to "RE"
MollyC Member since:
2006-07-04

"So does a codec (audo/video/whatever) fall under the realm of software? In other words, should a codec fall under copyright or patent? "

I think the algorithim falls under patent, while the source code and compiled binary falls under copyright.

Reply Score: 4

RE
by dylansmrjones on Fri 30th Mar 2007 11:27 UTC in reply to "RE"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

That's how I understand it too. Modded you up since it's such a wonderfully short explanation ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE
by lemur2 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 03:21 UTC in reply to "RE"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{ So does a codec (audo/video/whatever) fall under the realm of software? }

Yes, it does.

{ In other words, should a codec fall under copyright or patent? } }

Copyrights are meant to be able to restrict the copying of published works, so copyright could apply to published software code to protect that particular expression. Copyrights should not apply to works that are not published. You could argure that you can copyright the exact binary pattern in any given executable, and that would not prevent independent competing implementations from being written, so that is fair enough. You can then sue people who sell direct binary copies of your executable codec files without your permission.

Patents should apply to "inventive methods of doing <some function>". Not to "<some function>" per se. It is very debateable if a "codec" represents a patentable invention or not, just as it is entirely debateable if patents should apply to any software. Even Microsoft, apparently, have argued in court that patents should not apply to pure software.

{ IMHO, if you spend hundreds or thousands of dollar and/or man hours developing something like that, you deserve to be compensated for it monetarily. }

No problem with that. You can sell your version of your codec for as much as you think it will sell for.

I can't see a valid arguement for giving away a codec for free but at the same time trying to prevent other people from writing an independant implementation of the same codec ... especially if they write it for a platform that you do not support yourself.

{ While some would choose to give their work away for the greater good of man, we're not all socialists ;) }

While some would desire to restrict other people from doing original work in competition to themselves, fortunately we are not all despotic control freaks.

Edited 2007-03-30 03:30

Reply Score: 5

RE
by Almafeta on Fri 30th Mar 2007 03:55 UTC in reply to "RE"
Almafeta Member since:
2007-02-22

Not to "<some function>" per se. It is very debateable if a "codec" represents a patentable invention or not, just as it is entirely debateable if patents should apply to any software.

Just to note, as patenting algorithms is specifically permitted by the U.S. Constitution, this is not something likely to change -- unless, for some reason, some court decides that computers don't use algorithms (which is entirely possible given the level of understanding of computers that courts the world over have repeatedly shown) or some senator decides to pass an amendment.

While some would desire to restrict other people from doing original work in competition to themselves, fortunately we are not all despotic control freaks.

Protecting yourself != restricting others. Others will have the same ability to create something new as they have always had. They just can't force you to do something that you don't want to do, just so they have an easier time of it.

Reply Score: 1

RE
by lemur2 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 05:26 UTC in reply to "RE"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{ Protecting yourself != restricting others. }

Likewise, writing a codec, distributing a binary executable for Windows only, then trying to prevent others from writing a new implementation of that codec for another platform != protecting yourself. You don't have anything to sell for that other platform, therefore you are not harmed by the newly-written codec.

Reply Score: 2

RE
by dylansmrjones on Fri 30th Mar 2007 11:25 UTC in reply to "RE"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Just to note, as patenting algorithms is specifically permitted by the U.S. Constitution

Woot? O_o ... where do you read that? The word "patent" isn't in the Constitution, nor is the word "invention" or "algorithm".

The Constitution says in article 1, section 8:

The Congress shall have Power To...

...promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;


http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html#A1Sec8

Getting patents are not a right according to the Constitution but a possibility IF the Congress chooses so.

It does permit software patents, but it does not do so specifically.

Protecting yourself can restrict others if you protect yourself by restricting other individuals. Patents are such a restriction. Others will not have the same ability to create something new if you hold a patent, since their very own idea has become a government granted monopoly. They are barred from implementing their own ideas and barred from competition.

A few decades ago algorithms could not be patented in USA. As far as I recall it a court ruling in the 1970'es changed this. It could be changed back of course.

They just can't force you to do something that you don't want to do, just so they have an easier time of it.

That one doesn't make sense. Nobody is forcing you to do anything against your will by not granting you a monopoly on an idea (or a specific implementation of said idea). The Government is however forcing people to NOT do something their are otherwise capable of by granting you a monopoly. Your idea is not your property until you have received a Government granted monopoly. Until then it's public domain due to the fact that more than one person can get the same idea independently of eachother.

Reply Score: 3

RE
by lemur2 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 13:42 UTC in reply to "RE"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{ Others will not have the same ability to create something new if you hold a patent, since their very own idea has become a government granted monopoly. They are barred from implementing their own ideas and barred from competition. }

This seems to be a common misconception amongst Americans in particular.

Holding a patent does NOT grant a monopoly on an idea, and it does NOT prevent others from making a competing product.

Patents protect only a particular method of doing something.

Therefore, as an example, even during the time when Panadol/Tylenol was on the market and its makers held a valid patent for the formula for paracetamol, that patent did not prevent other pharmaceutical companies from putting their own competing headache tablets on the market, such as aspirin, dispirin, codeine, naprogesic (naproxen) or nurofen (ibuprofen).

Patents do NOT protect ideas (such as "headache tablet") per se, they protect only one possible method of doing something (such as "formula for paracetamol").

Edited 2007-03-30 13:54

Reply Score: 3

RE
by gustl on Mon 2nd Apr 2007 14:46 UTC in reply to "RE"
gustl Member since:
2006-01-19

Just to note, as patenting algorithms is specifically permitted by the U.S. Constitution

I am sorry, but that is not true.
That is the very long stretched interpretation of the USPTO and the courts that handle patent cases (special courts for IP laws).

It is NOT the interpretation of the highest US court. That court refused to take a case regarding the patentability of software ideas until this date.

What is in the US constitution is merely the statement, that the congress CAN (not MUST!!!) give a limited time monopoly to inventors in exchange for their making the invention public.

How far away a usual software patent tody is from the ideas of the constitution writes can be easily seen.
What exactly is not patentable is also given: Mathematics. And software code is pure Mathematics.

A Mathematician cannot patent his solutions to mathematical problems, as well as a programmer should not be able to patent his solutions to a mathematical problem (like data compression is one).
The line should be drawn where actual physics (and knowledge and innovative use of phsics) is necessary.

If you make an algorithm to have a better anti-locking brake, then the use of this algorithm for physical anti-locking brakes should be patentable, the use of the same algorithm in a video-codec should not be patentable. In effect this is the interpretation of most european courts of almost the same wording in their respective constitutions.

Reply Score: 1

You still have to differentiate:
by gustl on Mon 2nd Apr 2007 13:57 UTC in reply to "RE"
gustl Member since:
2006-01-19

The algorithm itself (the mathematical construct) is patentable in the US (because they see it as "invention"), and not patentable in Europe (because they see it as "discovery").

The written source code which implements the algorithm to be run in a computer is copyrightable (everywhere).

Now let's see what software patents effectively do (in 99.99% of the cases): Prevent software development, because too many bogus patents which would fall in the realm of "obvious" do get through the USPTO.
In cases where algorithms used for file-formats are patented the damage is even worse: Complete vendor lock-in, because not even reverse-engineering is allowed.

Patents have been granted for industries like pharmacy which have huge development costs to bear, and need a time-limited monopoly to get back their development costs. In that area patent databases are easily searchable, and inadvertent infringement is almost impossible. One product usually utilizes few patents.

In software development, development costs are very low (most programmers could easily "invent" 2 patents daily which would make it through USPTO), search is almost impossible (so no one can be sure that his programm does not infringe any patents), and every product utilizes hundreds of patents (not all of which will be found, even if for every block of code a patent search through the whole database is made).
Additionally, most time goes into implementation and testing of the code. Therefore, patents are usually not needed.

The US software patent system is clearly not working (and will not be working in the foreseeable future), look at all those funny lawsuits aimed by patent-trolls at large corporations with deep pockets to milk them dry. Also look at all the large corporations with huge patent portfolios who rip off the small start-ups simply because they can (or deny them entry to the market).

If you would invent a new video codec which Microsoft or IBM would like to use, I can tell how that game would be played:

You: Have new codec, who wants?
BigCorp: I want.
You: Want money.
BigCorp: Do you have an implementation?
You: Yes.
BigCorp: Give to us, we pay you $NOTMUCH license fee.
You: Want more, have patent.
BigCorp: Sure, but you probably infringe on 10 of our patents.
You: Is not true, see here. I infringe on none of your patents.
BigCorp: Maybe, maybe not. But for sure you will loose all of your money if we drag you through a 10-year patent infringement lawsuit, and you can't pressure us, the entire market is locked into our format already.
You: Well, OK, then give me $NOTMUCH

It already has happened to several companies just like that.

No, Software patents are extremely good for patent trolls, good for megacorporations like MS and IBM, bad for small businesses, and extremely bad for open source software.

Since most innovation happens at small startups, Softwarepatents are a hindrance to innovation, and are proliferating the monopolisation of entire landscapes of science.
Patents are a necessary evil for pharmacy, a less necessary evil for "pysical engineering". What remains for software development is only evil, stripped of any necessity to exist, because copyright is the right method for protection of your work.

Reply Score: 1

RE
by alisonken1 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 00:18 UTC in reply to "RE"
alisonken1 Member since:
2006-03-20

completely doing away with patents isnt the answer either. if i develope and app (or god forbid an OS) I want to have the right to charge for it, licence it, and if others use the technology i have developed i belive it fair to collect revenue if thats how I want to market my product.


Your oversimplifying.

Patents are good for inventions (which may be a little debatable), but when talking software, patents are the wrong venue.

Software is not an "invention". Software is an "idea".

Ideas are copyright material - not patent material.

Reply Score: 5

Collaboration
by zztaz on Thu 29th Mar 2007 23:37 UTC
zztaz
Member since:
2006-09-16

No one is trying to stop Microsoft from collaborating as one among equals. No on is trying to stop Microsoft from working on interoperability.

No one other than Microsoft themselves.

Reply Score: 5

why would GPL hurt MS?
by stephanem on Fri 30th Mar 2007 00:10 UTC
stephanem
Member since:
2006-01-11

They aren't even in the Linux business. This hurts Novell - they are starved for MS's money. THis hurts all the SuSE people Novell employs, this hurts customers of Novell.


MS has just saved a ton of money they had set aside for a gamble.

Reply Score: 4

RE: why would GPL hurt MS?
by codehead78 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 19:37 UTC in reply to "why would GPL hurt MS?"
codehead78 Member since:
2006-08-04

Not that I don't love yet another pointless MS bashing thread, but isn't this the real issue. The new clause hurts commercial Linux distros since the clause is about removing the ability to distribute Free Software. How does this hurt Microsoft?

Reply Score: 1

walterbyrd
Member since:
2005-12-31

"It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers,"

Typical load of FUD from the FUD factory. If msft wants to collaborate there is absolutely nothing stopping them. Why doesn't msft start by cooperating with the modest demands made by the EU, and the US-DoJ?

Reply Score: 5

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

"Why doesn't msft start by cooperating with the modest demands made by the EU, and the US-DoJ?"

THe modest demands of the EU? That's just nuts. The EU is just shaking MS down, because they know that Europe is too big of a market for MS to abandon. I think the DOJ let them get off a bit easy, but the EU's demands are crazy

Reply Score: 1

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

The US DOJ did nothing, because it was told to do nothing by the powers that be. Money leads to corruption, and Microsoft has LOTS of money.

The EU has been far too soft, and too kind on Microsoft. There are ways to deal with Microsoft's monopoly, but no one wants to recognise them and enforce them.

Let's take an example here - MSN Messenger, which is the #1 IM client - the licensing agreement to connection to the .net messenger network states that you cannot use a 3rd party client to connect. Wow. Microsoft makes a (obvious) Windows client, and a Mac OS X client, but not a Linux client, why? More people use Linux these days than OS X, so the usual number of users argument is FUD. By not releasing a Microsoft MSN Linux version, or removing said clause from the licensing agreement, Microsoft is attempting to stifle competition. Microsoft knows that IM is a big part of most computer users lives these days, it's integral.

A simple way to fix this problem is to FORCE Microsoft to port MSN Messenger to the Linux and BSD platforms. Simple.

Let's move onto MS Office. Office is deliberately tied into the Windows kernel at a very low level. This is deliberate, to make it very hard to port to other operating systems. This is deliberate market lock in behaviour from Microsoft. Office is teh de facto standard for office documents these days, more and more people and businesses use it. Openoffice is good, but it is only so good, it's not the 'real thing' and isn't perfect (and I mean that as no denigration to the OpenOffice development team/product). Writer is good, calc is well, not so good, impressa (or whatever it's called) is shocking. An open source Access replacement? Not so good. If you want to be sure that your office documents work with others, then you *have* to run MS Office. And that means either using Windows, or OS X. With all the new changes to Office, even the OS X version is having problems now, because of a variety of compatibility issues, and problems implementing core office features onto a non Windows platform. Microsoft has no interest in fixing this, or writing code that is modular, and can be easily ported by themselves to other opreating systems. Microsoft wants you to use MS Office on Windows. This leads to again, using and levering a market monopoly to your advantage.

The only real solution here is to again FORCE Microsoft to fully port Office to other platforms. Imagine how many business would probably move to a Linux desktop with MS Office on it - the savings in deployment costs, the safer environment (less trojans/viruses/worms/spyware), the more robust and reliable file systems etc would be a boon to business. Microsoft will never do this (unless forced to by some brave government), because it knows it'll lose business in the operating system arena.

Shall we now talk Windows Media player?

We need real people in places of power, who'll FORCE Microsoft to stop its anti competitive, anti monopolistic behaviour,and simply force it to compete on the quality of its products, not by illegal market leverage antics.

Dave

Reply Score: 5

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Wow, I've seen misinformation and nonsensical anti-corporate rants before, but this one's a real winner.

>> Let's take an example here - MSN Messenger, which
>> is the #1 IM client


Uhm, AIM is the #1 client - sorry try again.

>> the licensing agreement to connection to the
>> .net messenger network states that you cannot use
>> a 3rd party client to connect.


Uhm. NO. You may want to read:
http://messenger.msn.com/help/terms.aspx

specifically:
>> You may only use Microsoft software or
>> authorized third-party software to sign into and
>> use the Service. You can find a list of authorized
>> third-party software at
>> http://messenger.msn.com/Help/Authorized.aspx.


Even so, they HAVE been known to actually contribute freely information needed for some clients - Like TRILLIAN to work. (unlike AIM, which actively blocked third party clients, then reversed after a bunch of sites started blocking AOL with protest messages about it) AUTHORIZED - The trick is to actually ASK.

http://gaim.sourceforge.net/msn.php
You might want to read that too - it's four years old, NOBODY considers your little rant an issue anymore.

>> but not a Linux client, why?
Because it would cost more money for them to develop in house than to turn a blind eye to the existance of GAIM, Trillian, Fire, Adium, et al?

>> A simple way to fix this problem is to FORCE
>> Microsoft to port MSN Messenger to the Linux and
>> BSD platforms.

>> The only real solution here is to again FORCE
>> Microsoft to fully port Office to other platforms.

>> Shall we now talk Windows Media player?


The moment anyone tries to FORCE a company into action, you've defeated the purpose of free enterprise. How about instead we force RealNetworks to not SUCK and try to hijack the behavior of machines it's installed on to?

Passing and enforcing laws to PREVENT abuses by releasing code or not releasing software bundled is one thing, Using the laws to force them to release entirely new versions of their work for products they don't want to do is utter and total bull, especially when it expends a companies resources for something even the general public really doesn't give a **** about.

Of course, people love to penalize the big evil corporations with unfair and unjust laws - which of course opens the doors to other unjust and unfair laws targeting any single 'hated group'. It is the SAME rheotoric used by racists, hate groups and religions - and it's utter and total bull.

For the law to be fair, it should target all groups equally in the same circumstance. The 'media player' issue is a perfect example of this bullshit in action. Windows has come with a media player since the 3.1 version - EVERY OS comes with a media player... I don't see the EU going after linux distributors for bundling totem or Apple for bundling iTunes.

Hell, the wide-spread installation of iTunes on PC's is a great example of what total bullshit the whole media player incident really was, and reminiscent of the Navigator bull (remember, NN4.x sucked compared to IE5 back in the day, so instead of making a better product they claimed anti-trust).

It was not that the other players like realnetworks and quicktime couldn't compete because WMP was bundled, it was because their products SUCKED by comparison. (I've never understood the obsession with the bloated pile of crap known as realplayer in Europe - hell, the thing is damn near malware). Competition should come about by making a better more desirable product, not wussing out and running to the government because you suck.

We finally have someone who did EXACTLY that adding desirable functionality resulting in a product taking off through the roof - and it had NOTHING to do with the EU's bullshit way to milk a company for money.

JUST because they are on top, does NOT give the right to single them out the way the EU has, monopoly or no. There is a difference between anti-trust and 'we need a quick income boost because our own industry sucks'. Open up the books, restrict the making and distribution of a product - fine.

You don't force them to make a linux version of messenger, you attack their EULA for people to make and use compatable products. You don't force them to make a version of office, you make them release an open specification of their format so you can make a compatable program (oh, wait! they did it themselves and STILL get attacked for using a in-house for features they wanted instead of a so called 'open' format that didn't have them), you don't force them to not bundle media player, you use the hooks they documented (that are available just about everywhere) to make a better player (like BSPlayer or Media Player Classic).

'Force a company to make a product' - it was tried. Soviet russia fell and China has embraced the open market philosophy. Thanks for playing, always fun to see socialist propaganda in action.

Edited 2007-03-30 02:36

Reply Score: 5

pinguis Member since:
2007-01-31

Just a nitpick. MSN is the #1 IN EUROPE, AIM is virtauly unknown arround here.

Reply Score: 4

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> Just a nitpick. MSN is the #1 IN EUROPE, AIM is
>> virtauly unknown arround here.


Wow, you folks do live in hell.

Reply Score: 0

dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Wow, you folks do live in hell.

Well, can't argue about that ;)

Reply Score: 2

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Still, Denmark is just one of the first circles of hell. To find where AIM is the leader you'd have to visit the 9th circle.

Reply Score: 3

MollyC Member since:
2006-07-04

"Just a nitpick. MSN is the #1 IN EUROPE, AIM is virtauly unknown arround here."

This is true.
But regardless, MSN is actually an example of Microsoft collaborating with others, as they and Yahoo combined the MSN and Yahoo Messenger systems so that MSN Messenger and Yahoo Messenger can interact with each other.
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2005/oct05/10-12MSNYahooMe...
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2006/jul06/07-12IMInteropP...
http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20060927-7846.html


AIM, on the other hand, does have a history of lock-in via lock-out (locking in users by lockout out alternatives).

Edited 2007-03-30 04:09

Reply Score: 3

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Quote: "Uhm, AIM is the #1 client - sorry try again"

Maybe in America, not anywhere else I'll wager. Of course, Americans think that they're the centre of the world, so that probably explains your attitude.

OK - as to the 3rd party client connection to the msn .net messenger network, my wording wasn't the best, agree. Some, and I say some, 3rd party products can connect (legally, as per the EULA). There goes Gaim/AMSN/Kopete. Microsoft in the past has maliciously changed the way its connection protocals work to hinder these 3rd party applications from working. Of course, Microsoft hasn't been as bad as AIM, but since I'm not a user of AIM (never have been, never will be, it's simply not the de facto IM client in Australia and never has been).

Quote: "Because it would cost more money for them to develop in house than to turn a blind eye to the existance of GAIM, Trillian, Fire, Adium, et al? "

But, they ported it to OS X didn't they? I mean, more people use Linux on the desktop than OS X, if they can afford to port to OS X, why not Linux? Or is there maleovelent intent here? I think most reasonable and sane people know I'm right.

Quote: "The moment anyone tries to FORCE a company into action, you've defeated the purpose of free enterprise. How about instead we force RealNetworks to not SUCK and try to hijack the behavior of machines it's installed on to?"

True. I never said real player didn't suck, it did, big time. I stopped using it a long time ago, circa 98. It's crappy software, buggy, and full of spyware. No thanks. Quicktime was never crappy, it's a high quality player. Like with Internet Explorer, msn messenger and windows media player were bundled with the operating system, as money loss earners. If you include a freebie, and it's half decent, people won't go looking elsewhere.

Let's look at it from the point of view of your belovéd capitalistic nature. The .net messenger network has advertising, this is a money earner for Microsoft. Imagine if there was less msn messenger clients, that would mean less advertising revenue. WMP? By having a market share of media player consumers, Microsoft can more easily dictate and negotiate terms with the MPAA and RIAA, something it couldn't do if it didn't have reasonable market share to bully itself into the playing arena. So, bundling these freebies with the operating system allows Microsoft to gain a market share and monopolise it, by leveraging their operating system monopoly. Windows wasn't better than OS2/warp 4. IBM's advertising campaign did suck, but Microsoft deliberate sabotaged OS/2 in a variety of ways, these ways are well documented on the net. Go search.

Quote: "The moment anyone tries to FORCE a company into action, you've defeated the purpose of free enterprise. "

To be honest, I don't give a flying **** about free enterprise. It's the one reason why this modern world is so ****** up. Money is more important than people, people stab each other in the back to keep a job and make a dollar. No thanks. That's the human race at its worst. Communism works - it's just that the human nature is damn well greedy and self centered. If man was a decent species, he wouldn't have a problem with communism and it'd work just fine. And don't give me the bullshit that free enterprise has resulted in the world being the way that it is, and technology etc. That's just bullshit. Many scientific discoveries benefitting mankind were made long before corporate free enterprise that you Americans so love. Let's consider the G8 summit of 2005, where money was more important, than wiping the debt of many poor African countries and helping them with aid to become developed nations. Capitalism is bad, it teaches people to treat others badly, to consider money and social status more importannt than anything else.

If all things are equal, as you suggest, then why are big corporations allowed to influence governments so? I mean, hell, they're only a small percentage of the population, and they don't have the right to vote, only individuals do. Why did the RIAA/MPAA and commercial record labels lobby the US Congress to increase copyright etc, which is against what the founding fathers intended [in regards to copyright]. Answer me that eh? Extending copyrights is NOT in the interest of the public. It's about milking it all for more money. Again, your belovéd free enterprise.

Quote: "I don't see the EU going after linux distributors for bundling totem or Apple for bundling iTunes."

No, you don't, because they're not monopolies. Most Linux distributions not only have totem, but half a dozen or more media players. There's no deliberate favouritism, no deliberate bundling to force a person into using a certain product, or building psychological bonding between a consumer and a certain type of product, so that they exclude other similar products. Social programming by monopolism my friend.

Quote: "JUST because they are on top, does NOT give the right to single them out the way the EU has, monopoly or no. There is a difference between anti-trust and 'we need a quick income boost because our own industry sucks'. Open up the books, restrict the making and distribution of a product - fine."

Ahh, but the EU doesn't just "pick on Microsoft". It's rather fair and balanced in its justice, which is more than I can say for other countries interpretations of justice. I could say more, but they would be blatant anti US political comments.

Quote: "oh, wait! they did it themselves and STILL get attacked for using a in-house for features they wanted instead of a so called 'open' format that didn't have them"

What a load of crock. They ONLY did this because of ODF, and they're pulling every single dirty string to get their so called open format in front of ODF, so that they can retain their market monopoly. Nothing more, and nothing less.

Quote: "Soviet russia fell and China has embraced the open market philosophy."

See my earlier comments about human greed.

Quote: "Thanks for playing, always fun to see socialist propaganda in action."

No problem. :-)

Dave

Reply Score: 2

archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

"Accept human nature and work within it's framework - or be exploited your entire life."

This is off-topic, but I need to point out that with your approach there would have been no social progress whatsoever over the past couple of millenia.

"Pure" capitalism cannot function, which is why no Western Democracies use it. The U.S., in particular, likes to talk about free markets and such but is in reality a very interventionist country.

Just because selfish, negative urges exist doesn't mean we have to live by them. I think one needs to understand human nature, but at the same time understand that human nature evolves, that progress exists (and is desirable) and that justice is more important than profits.

Reply Score: 2

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

But a good read nevertheless. I agree with most of your points. It seems that human nature is not conducive to treating others right, and business just echoes that. I do honestly believe that free enterprise and capitalism show this problem off more.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

"Uhm, AIM is the #1 client - sorry try again. "

Only in the U.S.A, everywhere else AOL is a tiny, if even existing, player.

Reply Score: 3

gustl Member since:
2006-01-19

You have a point when you say, that Microsoft should (and actually cannot) be forced to make their product for another platform.

I might add, that even your parent got some facts wrong:

The EU commission never wanted MS to port anything to Linux or BSD, they just wanted them to publish the protocols and file formats that are used by windows (for example the SMB protocol). That is an action someone who has 90+ percent marketshare on the desktop should expect from the EU commission. The EU commission simply reestablishes the possibility of a free market. They do NOT however require that MS itself is porting something over.

You say, the Soviet Union failed because of a lack of market powers, well that is exactly the reason why the EU reestablishes those market powers where the market has turned monopolistic. And ONLY there the EU commission acts.

Now, Microsoft never wanted to publish their protocols and file formats, to keep their monopoly grip on the market, MS failed for several jears(!) to deliver a single protocol spec to their competitors. And for that they are sanctioned, rightly so.

Reply Score: 1

PlatformAgnostic Member since:
2006-01-02

Office is deliberately tied into the Windows kernel at a very low level. This is deliberate, to make it very hard to port to other operating systems.


Have you ever heard the expression, "never assume malice before considering incompetence?"

People often treat Microsoft's actions as conspiratorial or evil. Sometimes I can see that this is the case, at least with things like the OEM deals and the whole OS/2 NT debacle.

But you really stretch my mind when you declare that Microsoft is conspiring to NOT do something. It'd be like my wanting a sandwich and claiming that my roommate is "deliberately" not making me one because he's sitting there doing his homework. Now tell me, should I expect him to make me a sandwich and is he morally obliged to do so? How about if I'm also simultaneously trying to steal his girlfriend?

By the way, Office is not in the kernel and that's a really ludicrous claim. Next thing you're going to tell me is that IE is part of the kernel too. Hint: to be in the Windows kernel, you have to be part of ntoskrnl.exe or hal.dll or have a filename that ends in .sys. Look in Office for any of these files.

One thing you could say is that Office has an advantage on Windows because they have access to the Windows team (the people, not the source code). They can request features in Windows and they can report bugs in Windows faster than external customers. But the Office team does do a lot of work to make their stuff faster and better than other Windows applications. For instance, they have their own widget toolkit and create windows as blank canvases onto which they paint everything themselves. They then recreate all the accessibility infrastructure and standard behaviors for their widgets. This is what you have to do to get a really high-performance app like office in Windows. Sure, it's a little easier if you're at Microsoft, but there's still a lot of work and Office is a gigantic team.

In fact, office relies on a couple of core windows technologies like OLE and GDI, but most of its drawing is handled internally and is thus sorta platform independent. Porting to Linux would take time, but it is not infeasable considering that Office already runs fine on the Mac. They just don't have any good reason to do it right now. It's not in their interest, and there is no real moral or economic principle that indicates they should be forced to help their competitors.

Reply Score: 4

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{ But you really stretch my mind when you declare that Microsoft is conspiring to NOT do something. It'd be like my wanting a sandwich and claiming that my roommate is "deliberately" not making me one because he's sitting there doing his homework. }

I don't want my roommate to make my sandwich, I just want him to stop bitching whenever I make my own sandwich. I'd also like him to tell me if he has any particular dietary requirements so that I can make sandwiches that we both can eat.

Apparently, he would like to ban me from our shared kitchen, just because he knows I am fully capable of making sandwiches.

Reply Score: 5

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{ But you really stretch my mind when you declare that Microsoft is conspiring to NOT do something. It'd be like my wanting a sandwich and claiming that my roommate is "deliberately" not making me one because he's sitting there doing his homework. }

I don't want my roommate to make my sandwich, I just want him to stop bitching whenever I make my own sandwich. I'd also like him to tell me if he has any particular dietary requirements so that I can make sandwiches that we both can eat.

Apparently, he would like to ban me from our shared kitchen, just because he knows I am fully capable of making sandwiches.


Oh, BTW, the grumpy so-and-so has NEVER made me a sandwich, even though I have made a good many for him, and even if I offer to pay. In fact, like a petulant two-year-old, he absolutely refuses to do so.

Edited 2007-03-30 06:19

Reply Score: 2

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Office is deliberately tied into the kernel. Office DLL files will not communicate with the operating system unless the DLL files see/communicate what needs to be said.

Let's look at it another way - OpenOffice runs on BSD, Linux, OS X and Windows. It's code that's been written to be open and cross platform independant. Can you say the same about Microsoft Office? Nope. Can you imagine if Microsoft were made to port Office to Linux/BSD, we'd be getting "but we can't, there's parts of Windows that it needs to function properly [or function at all]. Microsoft made this very same argument when the DOJ questioned them about bundling IE in with Windows. They argued that Internet Explorer could not be removed from the system, not without breaking it. This point was proved totally bogus by 3rd party software engineers I might add.

Microsoft has no intentions of severing the interoperational ties between office/msn messenger/wmp etc. It wants them tied to the operating system, to retain its operating system monopoly. It knows that as soon as those applications/suites run on other platforms, it'll lose sales big time.

As to your last sentence, what a load of bullshit. More people use Linux on the desktop than macs world wide. If they can afford to port to OS X, then hell, they can afford to port to Linux. Typical pro Microsoft bullshit.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

"Office is deliberately tied into the kernel. Office DLL files will not communicate with the operating system unless the DLL files see/communicate what needs to be said."

Awesome nonsense. Yes, it is so tied to the Windows kernel that it runs on OSX.

"Let's look at it another way - OpenOffice runs on BSD, Linux, OS X and Windows"

OO.o compiled for OSX does not run on Linux. Does that mean OO.o is tied to the OSX kernel? (No, it doesn't)

"It's code that's been written to be open and cross platform independant. Can you say the same about Microsoft Office? Nope."

So what? They have no obligation to make Office run on other platforms although it does run on OSX. It's their product and it's not for you (or anyone else) to say what platforms it should run on.

"Microsoft made this very same argument when the DOJ questioned them about bundling IE in with Windows."

This is a COMLETELY different issue. It's not like Windows comes with Office and you can't remove it.

"Microsoft has no intentions of severing the interoperational ties between office/msn messenger/wmp etc."

Interoperational ties? How does WMP tie to Office? or MSN Messenger?

"Typical pro Microsoft bullshit."
Oh the irony.

Reply Score: 3

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Quote: "Awesome nonsense. Yes, it is so tied to the Windows kernel that it runs on OSX."

Did IQs just f--king drop? I didn't say that, so don't misconstrue my words. I said that it is deliberately tied at low levels to run on the Windows platform, to discourage it being ported to other operating systems. This is done deliberately, to force people to buy Microsoft Windows.

Quote: "OO.o compiled for OSX does not run on Linux. Does that mean OO.o is tied to the OSX kernel? (No, it doesn't)"

My point was that OO runs on pretty much every major platform, because it's designed to be modular and cross platform independant. MS Office hasn't. Someone else posted that Office for Mac was done from the ground up, that sort of proves my point that the original code for Office on Windows was never intended to be ported to another operating system. Again, vendor lock in.

Quote: "So what? They have no obligation to make Office run on other platforms although it does run on OSX. It's their product and it's not for you (or anyone else) to say what platforms it should run on."

And this is where I'm not a fan of free enterprise as some have coined it. This is selective support from Microsoft, it fears GNU/Linux, so it will do absolutely everything in its power to make sure that interoperability on the GNU/Linux platform is hindered. If Microsoft is so good, what does it have to fear by porting Office to Linux? It must be really afraid of losing business.

Quote: "This is a COMLETELY different issue. It's not like Windows comes with Office and you can't remove it."

Really? I *bet* you cannot totally remove MS Office. And I mean completely. Every single bit, every single dll file, system file, registry file. The auto uninstall leaves so much shit behind it isn't funny. And most people would never have any idea of where to look (or what to look for) to find it all and successfully remove it. This isn't just for MS Office, though, nearly every Windows application does it like this. If I want to remove an application from my system, I should have every single legal right to have it TOTALLY removed. Period. At the moment, no government has the balls to legally enforce this, because they're pandering to the needs of big business, instead of looking after their constituents - the people.

Quote: "Interoperational ties? How does WMP tie to Office? or MSN Messenger?"

Let me re-word this (and I think you deliberately misunderstood what I originally wrote) - I'm referring to the interoperability ties between msn messenger/office/wmp and Windows. Not between each other.

Quote: "Oh the irony."

I see no irony, I simply see truth. You're obviously a Microsoft fanboy, and a capitalistic fanboy.

Dave

Reply Score: 1

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>>And this is where I'm not a fan of free enterprise as some have coined it. This is selective support from Microsoft, it fears GNU/Linux, so it will do absolutely everything in its power to make sure that interoperability on the GNU/Linux platform is hindered.

Except the 'selective support' as you put it is nothing new or unique to Microsoft or computer development of the past two and a half decades. CROSS PLATFORM is, at least in the home computer market, the 'new kid' on the block.

How all the programs you bemoan only existing for Windows, well, only existing for Windows is not exactly unusual in the computer industry... I never expected VIC Basic programs to run on an Apple 2, I never expected C=64 programs to run on my Coco, I never expected TRS-DOS programs to run on MS-DOS, I never expected Appleworks and Hypercard to run in Windows, and I most certainly don't expect Microsoft Office to waste the manpower and resources to run native on linux.

IF they were so obsessed with quashing the upstart as you claim, they'd have sought legal action against Wine, Crossover Office, ReactOS and Mono long ago.

Besides, they probably looked at what happened when WordPerfect tried it, and said "oh, hell no."

Writing cross-platform programs is not easy, and usually involves either rewriting the program once for each platform (the traditional method and how Zork was ported to every platform in the '80s), relying on API wrappers like QT and GTK+ or using a interpreted or JIT language such as Basic or Java... the latter methods usually resulting in buggy slow programs that don't mesh smoothly with their host OS. Different operating systems means different ways of sending and recieving messages and interacting with files, hardware and the user.

If it didn't, they wouldn't be different operating systems.

You can see it in Firefox and Thunderbird with the "Memory Feature" and absurd bloat, or OpenOffice using it's own font renderer so it kerns text like a sweetly retarded epileptic crack addict. Programs like Limewire and Morbeus chewing >90% cpu for a task Shareaza can do at only 3%.

>> Did IQs just f--king drop?

You do keep posting and name calling. I imagine a number of people probably feel dumber for having read your posts.

Oh, besides.

Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers, Developers!!!

It had to be said.

Edited 2007-03-31 00:32

Reply Score: 0

merkoth Member since:
2006-09-22

It's amusing to see you all guys call each other "communist" as an insult. I thought that that kind of stupidity had died soon after the cold war. Free Software has nothing to do with politics, I'm fed up of reading this kind of posts everywhere. Don't like F/OSS, don't use it, the same way I don't use MSFT products without insulting anyone.

Reply Score: 4

Gryzor Member since:
2005-07-03

It is also amusing to see how you didn't mention how some of "we guys" were called "capitalists" as an insult.

None is an insult, but yet you only mentioned my comment, as If I had started anything. The original poster insulted people as if Capitalism is "bad".

We only read what we want to... as usual.

Reply Score: 1

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

I think you'll find the basic definition of port (in regards to operating systems) means to move X application from 1 operating system to another. How they did it is irrelevant. The gist is that application X originated on X operating system, but now has been re-written to run on Y operating system.

I'll bash Microsoft as much as I like. Their products are sub standard, overpriced, and their behaviour as a company is atrocious. You might like this sort of behaviour in the gung ho streets of the good ole us of A, but the rest of the world isn't necessarily just big good ole capitalist fans because the US is. Criticising Microsoft for their repetitive anti competitive and monopolistic behaviour (which is still going on to this very day, and the US DOJ does f--k all about it) is completely valid. If you don't like it, tough shit. It's the truth, and sure, the truth must really hurt.

Dave

Reply Score: 2

Gryzor Member since:
2005-07-03

Your answer is too simplistic, so it can't be corrected. The problem being discussed here is about MS Office for Linux and why they didn't port it, if they ported it to Mac. They didn't "port it", they rewrote it because they (correctly) considered that the Macintosh is (or was back then) a viable Desktop alternative used by more users. If this has changed now, I don't know (I don't think so, but I don't know). So the Mac is a more appealing environment to have an Office version. Now you could start firing arguments about they afraid of Linux taking over Windows marketshare; and we can start laughing about it.

Regarding your "criticism" of MS, it's your problem. I don't care they are being monopolistic, I really don't care. I do not live in the US, for what is worth. Bitch about the US all that you want, they are still the #1 power ;)

I am not an US Citizen of any kind. You can read my comments in the past to find out where I come from.

People criticising MS (or any other company) make me laugh. Seriously. Go and spread your word, the world will listen to you.

Or you could stop making noise, and produce something useful. I will. (by using both Apple and MS products). Oh and some Unix too, OpenBSD rocks ;)

Martin.

Reply Score: 1

ThunderBug Member since:
2006-03-05

Good points, but I'm finding little need to spend money on a port of MS Office if ever offered on Linux. OpenOffice is coming along nicely and for most uses, it's not necessary to pay the tax.

Kudos to the OOo crew!!!

Reply Score: 2

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

"Shall we now talk Windows Media player? "

It's been already said, but I'll say it again, Lots of OEM's ship other media players with Windows computers, it's just a facetious argument.

"Let's move onto MS Office. Office is deliberately tied into the Windows kernel at a very low level. This is deliberate, to make it very hard to port to other operating systems. This is deliberate market lock in behaviour from Microsoft"

Office really has nothing to do with the EU's problems with MS, as they have published the schema and documentation for thier XML document spec, and are trying to get it standardized. They may have acted that way in the past, but if you are talking the present, Office 2007 is the most open office (hee hee) yet.

"Let's take an example here - MSN Messenger, which is the #1 IM client - the licensing agreement to connection to the .net messenger network states that you cannot use a 3rd party client to connect."

Where does it say that? I use GAIM, nobody ever stopped me from connecting. I am pretty sure that even if it does, it's unenforcable, and everybody and thier dog has a client to talk to MSN messenger.

Reply Score: 2

fsckit Member since:
2006-09-24

<sarcasm on>

Yeah I hear ya man. Having to fully document your APIs so the folks who paid good money for them can actually make use of them, that's just f--kin nuts.

<sarcasm off>

Reply Score: 4

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> Having to fully document your APIs so the folks
>> who paid good money for them can actually make use
>> of them


Which was the part of the EU going after them which at least made sense - UNLIKE their previous efforts over things like bundling media player.

Someone pays for a product and you don't deliver - THAT's reason for legal action.

Going after someone for including something for free that the opposition ALSO includes for free? That's bullshit.

... and then there's this *******

Reply Score: 2

TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

First, Samba is an implementation of SMB, an IBM technology. This protocol is what makes up windows file sharing.

Second, the EU isnt on MS about bundling WMP with Windows. Its the fact the computers arent allowed to be shipped with Real or QUicktime as the default player. MS insists it must maintain a consistent image. Well, that automatically means that WMP is the default standard whether you like it or not. A bit different from Linux which could come with ALL the media players installed by default. Its an interesting problem though. In t he end I think the right answer is to let computer makers put whatever the hell they want on the machine and take the decision out of MS's hand. Then if WMP is still #1, at least they will have earned it on merit.

Reply Score: 3

deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

>> Second, the EU isnt on MS about bundling WMP
>> with Windows. Its the fact the computers arent
>> allowed to be shipped with Real or QUicktime as the
>> default player. MS insists it must maintain a
>> consistent image.


Where did you get THAT? MS has NEVER stopped vendors from shipping third party video players overriding the default behavior - Hell, after some of the CRAP DVD players that take over all video playback that come from certain optical drives and sound cards (yes, creative media center, I'm looking at YOU) I've often wished they DID.

If that wasn't what the EU was doing, then why in blazes did MS have to go back and make the 'reduced media' version of XP, and then STILL get harrassed for leaving too much of their media routines in place.

Media routines by the way that without which a hefty portion of the players for windows ceased to function until you run the optional install to put it back in - Players like BSPlayer, DivX Player, and even Quicktime.

Nothing like crushing the competition by removing your own product. Thanks EU.

Reply Score: 1

MollyC Member since:
2006-07-04

"Second, the EU isnt on MS about bundling WMP with Windows. Its the fact the computers arent allowed to be shipped with Real or QUicktime as the default player."

No. HP, for years, installed iTunes as the defualt music player. Dell, at various times in the past, installed MusicMatch as the default music player and Dell's own "Media Experience" app as the default DVD player. The reason nobody installs Real or QT as the default video players is because no user in his right mind would want that. Real sucks, and the Windows version of QT sucks as well.

"MS insists it must maintain a consistent image. Well, that automatically means that WMP is the default standard whether you like it or not."

Um, no.
In XP, go to the Add/Remove Progrmas Control Panel and select the "Set Program Access and Defaults" tab, which allows the OEM or user to set the default browser, email client, media player, IM client, and JVM to whatever he chooses (I think the apps have to use some API (a registry setting or somesuch) to let the system know that they are a browser, IM client, or whatever, so that they show up in the list of options).

Hell, it even allows you to remove access to the Microsoft products altogether.

Edited 2007-03-30 05:48

Reply Score: 4

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

it would be if that was the only issue, but forcing them to remove mediaplayer? Getting cranky about messenger? Come on, anybody can download a 3rd party messenging app, I use GAIM myself on windows.

Lots of OEM's also ship other mediaplayers with thier computers, have you ever heard of WinDVD? PowerDVD? Quicktime? if that was the only thing the EU was cracking down on MS about, I would agree, but most of thier demands are just cash grabs.

Reply Score: 2

Microsoft's Comments
by hackus on Fri 30th Mar 2007 04:12 UTC
hackus
Member since:
2006-06-28

"It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers," said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft’s vice president of intellectual property and licensing."

Translation:

We are displeased that the GPL V3 protects the Linux OS from becomming a target of patent litagation, and further FUD campaigns like the one we proxied via SCO.

We would like the community to reconsider so that we can crush Linux, destroy free software and eventually allow only the richest and most powerful companies to write software.

Everyone else must go to jail, particularly if they write for our trusted PC platform.

We feel to improve the quality of software in general, only Microsoft knows whats good for everyone else, and if everyone would just let us destroy free software we could bring you even more expensive software.

We are very disappointed.

-Hack

Reply Score: 5

Who's the Real Loser?
by sfraider24 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 05:19 UTC
sfraider24
Member since:
2007-03-30

I have to believe that Linux, not Microsoft, will be the real loser if FSF gets its way.

Reply Score: 1

heh, no joke :)
by l3v1 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 06:20 UTC
l3v1
Member since:
2005-07-06

Software behemoth Microsoft could be one of the biggest losers

Well, they won't, at least money-wise, since their hordes of marketeers don't work for nothing. Other than that, a bit of "looser"ness maybe will wake someone at MS to think a bit.

"It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers," said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft’s vice president of intellectual property and licensing.

Future "collaboration" ? ;) ) Geez, someone must have drunk too much cofee this morning ;) ) Well, thumbs up though, since at least he recognizes the opportunity: now he has something to use as an excuse for not collaborating.

Of course GPL3 doesn't seem like a sugar coated birthday cake for Microsoft, why should they like any move that could strenghten IP (geez, how much I hate even the abbreviation, not the words, but what they've been turned into) protection of anything that doesn't belong to them, let alone Linux.

These guys are just desperate, and have no freaking idea what to do about FOSS and Linux, generally or specifically, besides mirage-like cooperation/collaboration steps, which mostly are just marketeer moves for mild image enhancement targeted for the unknowing masses, and/or "IP"-related threatenings. I just can't keep guessing what they use those many hundreds of brilliant minds for, who they've hired along the years.

Reply Score: 3

Yeah, MS... we get it
by Darkelve on Fri 30th Mar 2007 07:01 UTC
Darkelve
Member since:
2006-02-06

"It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers,"

Well, heaven forbid that someone should try to give benefits to *customers*! Sigh...

And also, the license does not prevent MS and Novell to work together... all it does is try to prevent methods of working together which, in the long run, are harmful for said customers.

Edited 2007-03-30 07:03

Reply Score: 3

Debate Pointless
by PlatformAgnostic on Fri 30th Mar 2007 07:08 UTC
PlatformAgnostic
Member since:
2006-01-02

Linus didn't propose that the kernel would change to the new license. He just said that the license was "okay" and "sane" as opposed to the earlier ones. Reading the LKML indicates that he is generally opposed to a license change, thought it could happen anyway because some other big contributors are pushing for it.

For those people who think that the GPLV3 will protect you from patent lawsuits, I'd like to ask on what basis you make those claims?? If someone releases code that infringes on a patent or violates a copyright under the GPLV3, the recipients, distributors, and users of the code are just as liable as if that code were GPLV2. If a company releases code as GPL V2 without relinquishing patent rights, and then tries to assert those rights they will probably not be able to do so because it would be a violation of the license. The Novell-Microsoft partnership is a little silly and it does cast clouds over open source in the minds of those who care more about laws and pissing contests than technical excellence. But ultimately, no one can really sue open-source since there's no single entity that controls it. The code that would result in a lawsuit will be widely distributed and there won't be political will to force all this code to change. Especially of the code was released in "bad faith."

It might be good that there's a new GPL, but I'd say that people shouldn't worry about theoretical concerns like the license and potential lawsuits that won't occur for the next 5 years. These things should be non-issues until Linux is getting serious. Look, a mark of a successful movement that's making money and threatening the establishment is the number of lawsuits that spring against it. If people are making a worthwhile amount of money out of linux, they can afford the court fees. If not, there's no reason to believe they will be sued. Don't worry about it: they're not going to sue you as an individual user of linux.

Reply Score: 2

it is unfortunate...
by mmu_man on Fri 30th Mar 2007 10:12 UTC
mmu_man
Member since:
2006-09-30

that MS claims IP that isn't theirs...
SHOW US THE CODE!
http://www.showusthecode.com/

Reply Score: 1

RE: it is unfortunate...
by Laurence on Fri 30th Mar 2007 11:00 UTC in reply to "it is unfortunate..."
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

that MS claims IP that isn't theirs...
SHOW US THE CODE!
http://www.showusthecode.com/


TCP/IP was designed by BSD systems

Reply Score: 1

Lost for Words
by segedunum on Fri 30th Mar 2007 10:15 UTC
segedunum
Member since:
2005-07-06

"It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers," said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft’s vice president of intellectual property and licensing.

Says it all, really. The pot and kettle analogy is just too mild.

The article is rather sensationalist though, because it depends on if people adopt GPL3 and if the main contributors to many FSF hosted projects are happy about it.

Reply Score: 3

Free Market?
by christianhgross on Fri 30th Mar 2007 13:10 UTC
christianhgross
Member since:
2005-11-15

It's funny how people talk about free market and yet they backtrack...

>>> Let's take an example here - MSN Messenger, which is the #1 IM client - the licensing agreement to connection to the .net messenger network states that you cannot use a 3rd party client to connect. Wow. Microsoft makes a (obvious) Windows client, and a Mac OS X client, but not a Linux client, why? More people use Linux these days than OS X, so the usual number of users argument is FUD. By not releasing a Microsoft MSN Linux version, or removing said clause from the licensing agreement, Microsoft is attempting to stifle competition. Microsoft knows that IM is a big part of most computer users lives these days, it's integral.
<<<<<

Funny, you want competition free market economy and then to force individuals to do things to your taste. If Microsoft does not release a Linux client SO BE IT!

For example, Zimbra is not available to run on a Windows server. Well I use a Windows server so darn it Zimbra should be forced to create a distribution for Windows!

Agree or disagree? If you agree then your MSN IM argument is consistent. If you disagree then your are being hypocritical.

>>>Let's move onto MS Office. Office is deliberately tied into the Windows kernel at a very low level. This is deliberate, to make it very hard to port to other operating systems. This is deliberate market lock in behaviour from Microsoft. Office is teh de facto standard for office documents these days, more and more people and businesses use it. Openoffice is good, but it is only so good, it's not the 'real thing' and isn't perfect (and I mean that as no denigration to the OpenOffice development team/product). Writer is good, calc is well, not so good, impressa (or whatever it's called) is shocking. An open source Access replacement? Not so good. If you want to be sure that your office documents work with others, then you *have* to run MS Office.
<<<<

Don't you find this a bit ironic? Office costs quite a bit of money. Yet x years later we have this free package called OpenOffice and it still has not made any dent whatsoever! Even Firefoc, Thunderbird and other open source packages have made a dent.

What this tells me regarding OpenOffice is that the developers of OpenOffice are not addressing the needs of their customers whereas Microsoft is.

You want to make a dent? Don't buy Windows. Don't buy Office. Don't use any Microsoft products! That's how consumers can make a dent! Even though many will argue that you are being forced to use Microsoft, I have not seen any MS employees point a gun to my head and saying buy this. Thus I have free choice, and I make use of that choice thank you very much!

Reply Score: 4

I tend to believe them...
by RMSe17 on Fri 30th Mar 2007 14:11 UTC
RMSe17
Member since:
2006-03-06

"It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers,"
I think there is truth to that.. There is a group of losers within the FSF who think their software vision is more important than the ease of use and benefit of end user.
I have seen myself how they would not allow NVIDA binary drivers to be part of a Linux distribution, even if that made Linux easier to use.
If they keep going this way, them and Microsoft might as well merge, since they are doing the same thing from a different angle: making it harder on the end user.

Reply Score: 1

gustl Member since:
2006-01-19

I think that sentence is wrong.

What benefits customers? I would say, that to know that simple use of Linux on your company servers cannot get you a patent infringement lawsuit from Microsoft would be a benefit for customers.

Well, nothing in this world stopüs Microsoft from making a pledge, that the will never sue mere end users of any software for patent infringement.

This still would allow them to sue any distributor, but the end users would be safe.

If that is what Microsoft customers want, than I guess Microsoft should start listening to their customers and publish such a pledge.

They should however not attempt to get a company turning their community colleagues (and competitors) down by asking (or forcing) them into a contract which clearly violates the spirit of the GPL.

The Novel - MS contract divides the cummunity in two parts, one which will have no incentive to help the other, should a Microsoft patent lawsuit hit a distributor. That is what the GPL3 is drafted to prevent, and in my opinion, rightly so.

BTW, closed source drivers are a real pain in the a.., when the driver development gets discontinued because NVIDIA decides that all their previous customers should buy another video card.

Reply Score: 1

Poppycock...
by NixerX on Fri 30th Mar 2007 14:44 UTC
NixerX
Member since:
2006-01-04

Aint that the pot Calling the kettle black..
"It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers,"

OSS can't have closed source vendors robbing them. Just look at how Firefox IE7 is. IMHO.

Reply Score: 1