Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 10th Apr 2007 18:53 UTC
SuSE, openSUSE As reported by Slashdot, debate has risen over ClearType in Linux. OpenSUSE recently disabled this technology, saying "that this feature is covered by several Microsoft patents and should not be activated in any default build of the library". Other websites have picked up on this as well: "The strange thing is though: no matter the fact that Novell and Microsoft are now buddies, openSUSE still has to be concerned about the ClearType patents!"
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unclear summary
by thebackwash on Tue 10th Apr 2007 19:37 UTC
Member since:

I read the bug report, and just to make certain, it's not cleartype, but sub-pixel antialiasing, which is disabled. When I first read the summary, it sounded like the actual Microsoft implementation was found in freetype. Which wouldn't be a bad thing; I use a mac, but I think MS's implementation of sub-pixel antialising is far and above the best one.

[PIPE dream]
Let's see if we can raise enough funds to buy a license to distribute cleartype under the GPL

Reply Score: 2

RE: unclear summary
by Almafeta on Tue 10th Apr 2007 19:55 in reply to "unclear summary"
Almafeta Member since:

[PIPE dream] Let's see if we can raise enough funds to buy a license to distribute cleartype under the GPL [/PIPE]

Typically $2/copy for an OS, assuming a legit OS. Releasing MS's property under a copyleft license, if even possible, would be much more expensive (somewhere on the lines of paying for a ClearType license for every computer it could possibly be run on between now and 10-20 years from now, when support for it will end).

However, if you are using a license other than the GPL, then you can pay $2 per copy of the OS you sell, keep the code you license from Microsoft closed-source, and do whatever you want with the rest of your product.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: unclear summary
by kaiwai on Wed 11th Apr 2007 13:57 in reply to "RE: unclear summary"
kaiwai Member since:

Incorrect, what you're doing when you licence the "IP" of Microsoft is being allowed to use the patented algorithms invented by Microsoft - just because the 'exist' out there in the wild, doesn't make their use 'legal' in the sense of usage without payment of

There would be no need worry about whether the code exists, but whether the entity has the right to ship products with patented algorithms that are active in the product at moment of shipment.

For example, you can download OpenSolaris right now, and it is shipped with Freetype Cleartyle disabled, however, you can enable it. Rather than the vendor itself being held responsible, the responsibility then falls on the patent holder itself to ask for payment off the individual users who choose to activate that particular piece of technology.

What that does, infact, benefit the 'opensource world' from the point of view that it forced Microsoft to accept that their technology *WILL* be used, with or without their permission, they can either accept that and move on OR try and attack every single individual who recompiles their copy of Freetype - which quite frankly, would be a waste of resources.

Reply Parent Score: 2