Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 23rd Feb 2010 16:04 UTC, submitted by lemur2
Legal Reminiscent of the much-discussed deal with Novell, Microsoft has entered into a patent agreement with Amazon, in which both companies promise not to sue one another over patent-related issues. So far, that doesn't sound all too uncommon, but what makes this one stand out is that Microsoft explicitly mentions Amazon's use of open source technology such as Linux, rekindling an old claim from Microsoft.
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by vaette on Tue 23rd Feb 2010 16:12 UTC
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Of course Microsoft has bunches of patents which can be applied to various things in a Linux distribution. Most likely all major software companies have some, seeing how wide patents can be and the raw number of applications made. It seems unlikely that Microsoft has any complaints which are sufficient to make bringing the patents to court (which would gain them little even if they were to win) however. There is probably a deal involving a collection of actually interesting patents at the bottom of this, but a grab-bag cross-licensing deal is bound to involve a lot of iffy stuff as well.

The patent system is quite broken, and one can't really blame Microsoft for taking part, since it is more or less a question of a cold war mutually-assured-destruction kind of environment between corporations.

Edited 2010-02-23 16:16 UTC

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