Should I be sad or relieved? Groklaw, the website that played a central role in the SCO vs. sanity case, has just announced it will close up shop on May 16 of this year. Groklaw’s place in history has been secured, surely, but in recent years, the site became more and more like a relic from the past, clearly stuck in the everyone vs. Microsoft mindset of the late ’90s and early 2000s. Even in today’s announcement post, Groklaw shows that its time has indeed come.
I’ve never been an unequivocal fan of Groklaw, for the simple reason that its author, PJ, pretty much saw Microsoft’s hand in everything. However, this does not negate the fact that Groklaw has played a crucial role in the SCO case; PJ uncovered several pieces of important evidence in the case, which even lead to SCO targeting her on a more personal level.
Despite these accomplishments, the site started losing its edge the past few years – in my eyes, at least. PJ is still entirely hung up on Microsoft, even in today’s announcement post. She goes on and on about how Microsoft is tying to destroy Android, and keeps on talking about the mobile space as if it’s Microsoft vs. Linux, stating that Groklaw isn’t needed because Android has beaten Microsoft. This makes no sense – Microsoft was already beaten long before Android came onto the market. Android is beating iOS and BlackBerry, not Microsoft.
Still, credit where credit is due. “No matter what happens next, I know that we changed the course of history. How many people get to say that? I never expected it, frankly, and I am grinning just thinking about how much fun we’ve had doing it,” PJ writes, “Our work will be available for historians permanently, so the impact we had isn’t over today, and someday we’ll tell our grandkids that we were part of this, part of Groklaw. We are in the history books. Our work will continue as long as anyone cares about this unique time period in the history of computer software, a history that we are a part of forever. And that is a long, long time.”
Thank you, PJ, for your work, and good luck with any future endeavours.
Groklaw is not a relic of the past.
Software Patents & Copyright are very much in the here & now.
Think of all the MAD cases going on amongst the Mobile Phone makers?
Think of the Oracle vs Google Header Copyrights?
I’ve contributed to Groklaw for most of its existance. As someone who has been involved with computers for 40+ years I (and I’m not alone here) have a lot of experience that did prove useful in a few Patent cases.
As for the future, there are more and more lawsuits being filed everyday. (All those Law School grads have to do someting don’t they?) Us Techies/Geeks really do have to know about this stuff.
Ok, I’m probably biased as I had (in the dim an distant past,circa 1980) three patents related to Video Signal Decoding. These were all related to the use of FPGA and are really obsolete these days. I never got a dime from them but that was never the point.
These days, there are so many bogus/obvious patents that have been approved by the USPTO that if I dared file my applications now I’d probably be in breach of 20+ patents.
Then there is the analysis of the legal schennagins in the court rooms. This is not going to go away anytime soon. This has really taught me a lot.
So what do you propose should take it’s place?