Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 6th Oct 2008 10:37 UTC, submitted by John Mills
Mono Project The Mono project has released Mono 2.0. As most of you will know, Mono is an open-source implementation of Microsoft's .NET framework for Linux, Mac OS X, Windows, and other operating systems. The 2.0 release comes packed with new features, the main ones being the compiler upgrade to C# 3.0 with support for LINQ, as well as the inclusion of ADO.NET 2.0, ASP.NET 2.0 and System.Windows.Forms 2.0. The release notes detail all the changes and new features.
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RE[7]: Amazing
by lemur2 on Wed 8th Oct 2008 23:50 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Amazing"
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Wine is a bit more problematic. Wine is a free-software implementation of a translation between Windows win32 API and the Linux API that covers the same purpose.

Just on Wine ... there is another argument. Wine is not a copy of Microsoft's source code for the win32 API, so it is in no danger from copyright law. Wine is a reverse engineering of the win32 API functionality, but that is OK IF the win32 API is only protected by virtue of it being a trade secret. Wine is only a problem if it violates a valid patent held by Microsoft.

OK, there is certainly a lot of prior art for the concept of an API, so Microsoft have a hard task right off the bat to try to establish that they did have a valid patent in this arena, but let's suppose for the moment (for the sake of argument) that the US patent system is inane enough to allow Microsoft an enforceable patent on some aspect or another on the win32 API.

OK, a patent is actually a form of IP protection for a "method" of doing something. It does not protect the actual "doing of something", but only the method of doing it described in the patent.

Example of what this means: it would be possible for Edison to get a patent on his invention of an incandescent light. The patent would be to protect edisons "method of producing light from electricity". That after all was Edison's invention.

OK, a flourescent light, or a LED light, both are also "methods of producing light from electricity" ... but neither would violate Edison's patent on his incandescent light because both the flourescent light and the LED light sources use an entirely different method to produce the light from the electricity.

With me so far?

OK then ... Wine uses an entirely different method to provide the win32 API services to any running programs than Windows does.

Wine passes the calls (with translated parameters) on to and back from the Linux API, whereas Windows processes the calls directly.

Therefore, you could argue, that Wine does not violate any patent that Microsoft may hold, because Wine uses entirely different methods than Windows does.

Edited 2008-10-08 23:52 UTC

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