Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 27th Jun 2006 13:25 UTC, submitted by jeanmarc
Legal "Nathan Myhrvold, formerly Microsoft's chief technology officer, retired six years ago from the software giant with a fortune that, it's safe to say, runs well into nine figures. But instead of taking early retirement as a chance to relax, travel, and maybe dash off a unified field theory or two, Myhrvold has founded a firm that has produced almost as much rage, terror, and ominous speculation as Microsoft once did."
Permalink for comment 137659
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
One story about Nathan Myhrvold
by pablo_marx on Tue 27th Jun 2006 14:44 UTC
pablo_marx
Member since:
2006-02-03

Here's a story according to Steve Schramm, former General Manager of the Magic Cap division and CEO/President of DataRover/Icras:

Andy [Hertzfeld] strived to open Magic Cap at the time of the GMGC bankruptcy. If I remember Andy's explanation correctly, Nathan Myrvold, formerly of Microsoft, used the bankruptcy process to capture the IP after Andy Hertzfeld working with Andy Rubin had won two previous decisions to get the Magic Cap IP. Nathan mostly wanted the Telescript agent patents for his dead startup patent collection, though.

Afterwards, Andy H. continued to work with Nathan to pry the Magic Cap IP loose, since Nathan allegedly didn't care that much. But Nathan kept putting more and more restrictions on Magic Cap's use to the point that few would have been able to use the Magic Cap technology for anything practical or interesting even if it was open source. So Andy finally stopped trying.

The bottom line is that even though no one is using Magic Cap, we can't make it available as open source. And thus, and incredible amount of creativity, investment and hard work is effectively lost to the world (except for what people remember in their heads).

Reply Score: 3