Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 8th Nov 2007 17:33 UTC, submitted by WillM
In the News One year after sealing their surprise alliance, Novell and Microsoft have announced an expansion of their technical collaboration to 'link together the existing Windows and Linux frameworks'. The firms will extend their existing collaboration to focus on virtualisation, standards-based management, directory and identity federation and document format compatibility. As part of this process, Microsoft said that both companies are 'now working closely' at the Microsoft and Novell Interoperability Lab in Massachusetts.
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RE[5]: Good for Novell!
by cyclops on Thu 8th Nov 2007 21:40 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Good for Novell!"
cyclops
Member since:
2006-03-12

"with regards to the threats, we do not know if they ARE unsubstantiated and this is where the FUD comes into play. What needs to happen is for someone to call their bluff.

The trouble with this is if it turns out they are NOT unsubstantiated then linux in the business world would crumble overnight."

They are unsubstantiated...until they produce anything thats the point. What is interesting is that I can remember a time when there was a awful lot of other Os's around and Office applications. Microsoft is *very* late to the game Thats ignoring a whole host of things like API's or even networking. Microsoft has more to lose than *anyone*, its gonna make computers unusable. I personally cannot wait for the patent wars to start.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[6]: Good for Novell!
by Teknoenie on Thu 8th Nov 2007 22:08 in reply to "RE[5]: Good for Novell!"
Teknoenie Member since:
2007-06-07

"The trouble with this is if it turns out they are NOT unsubstantiated then linux in the business world would crumble overnight."

I believe this is incorrect. The BSDs went through something similar in the early 90s. The infriginging lines were removed and BSD carried on. I think the same would apply to GNU/Linux, however, companies such as Suse and RedHat may have to pay some some sort of damages. The code is out there, it's easy to remove and create new open implementations, but the user base would suffer throughout the transition.

Of course, all this is purely on the speculations of Microsoft stating GNU/Linux is infringing without ponying up the proof.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[7]: Good for Novell!
by sbergman27 on Thu 8th Nov 2007 22:21 in reply to "RE[6]: Good for Novell!"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
I believe this is incorrect. The BSDs went through something similar in the early 90s.
"""

No. And this is an *extremely* important point to understand. The BSD lawsuit was about copyrights. The threats OSS faces today are about patents. That is a *completely* different scenario. One cannot simply rewrite sections of code to avoid infrindements. Whereas copyrights are about copying lines of code, patents are about implementing *ideas*. If we are found to be infringing, for the sake of argument, upon a patent which covers having a pointing indicator on the screen which one can control with ones hand, we cannot simply rewrite the code. We must stop using mouse pointers altogether and find a completely different way of interacting with the desktop.

Being called into question on copyrights is, at worst, a major inconvenience. Being found to violate certain patents could be absolutely *devastating*.

What is protecting us now is not necessarily that we are not infringing upon any patents, but that for various reasons, few actual players in the industry, short of pure-play patent trolls, dare to use their patents offensively.

If patent armageddon were, in fact, unleashed some day, OSS would be just a devastated as the closed source companies. Worse, perhaps, since other than Novell, we don't have much, if any, in the way of cross-licensing deals, and are not in a position to make them in order to save our skins.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[6]: Good for Novell!
by zegenie on Fri 9th Nov 2007 00:00 in reply to "RE[5]: Good for Novell!"
zegenie Member since:
2005-12-31

The patent war myth is just like "the clone war" myth - you have to wait for the fifth movie, 25 years to see if it's all it's hyped up to be.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[6]: Good for Novell!
by Adurbe on Fri 9th Nov 2007 08:52 in reply to "RE[5]: Good for Novell!"
Adurbe Member since:
2005-07-06

They are unsubstantiated...until they produce anything thats the point.


They may not be unsubstantiated, thats my point! until they produce anything we don't KNOW. (as a mere laymen I am sadly not privi to the details)

You are correct if you intend that to say 'unproven' at this point in time.

personally cannot wait for the patent wars to start.


To say you can't wait for patent wars is worryingly naive! Imageine for a second everybody and their dog enforced the patents they held. There are patents for sending email, storing them in a folder, having a web interface to view them.There is even a patent held for additional functionality for a web browser via plugins!! Basically in the worst case scenario it could make almost EVERY program you currently run ILLIGAL in some way or another, leaving you potentially liable for the costs

Patent wars have the potential to destroy the industry from which I take home a wage. Call it selfish but if the odd 'deal' here and there keeps it together then fine by me

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[7]: Good for Novell!
by cyclops on Fri 9th Nov 2007 15:51 in reply to "RE[5]: Good for Novell!"
cyclops Member since:
2006-03-12

"To say you can't wait for patent wars is worryingly naive! Imageine for a second everybody and their dog enforced the patents they held. There are patents for sending email, storing them in a folder, having a web interface to view them.There is even a patent held for additional functionality for a web browser via plugins!! Basically in the worst case scenario it could make almost EVERY program you currently run ILLIGAL in some way or another, leaving you potentially liable for the costs

Patent wars have the potential to destroy the industry from which I take home a wage. Call it selfish but if the odd 'deal' here and there keeps it together then fine by me"

No I am absolutely perfect in saying unsubstantiated, in not Give me a the list Microsoft has produced. I'd love to see it.

The reason you call me naive is *exactly* the reason I want the patent wars to start. Microsoft are painted all over the place as being *computing*. I *know* they are not. I cannot think of a single thing they did first...I'm not talking the fringe stuff. I'm talking File-system, Word Processor, Spreadsheet; Calculator, Chat Client, Dialog Boxes everything, Toolbars, 3 buttons on the mouse, animated Icons, Browser the list is endless. Ignoring the stuff owned by IBM, SUN etc we have thousands of little companies...and Microsoft are a more attractive target than Red Hat Simply because the risks are the same with the rewards being less. With potential Billions at stake...I'd be tempted for going for a "No Win, No Fee"

There will only be two possible outcomes Patent Reform, or the end of computing in America...both seem very attractive options

The *great* thing about the Microsoft/Novell agreement is it doesn't cover *clone* technologies which I suspect covers *everything* that Microsoft have done...but I suspect its more about formats. Oddly everything Novell is working on is a clone technology, can't wait till the knives come out on that one.

Reply Parent Score: 1