Palm Refuses Yet Another BeOS Licensing Proposal

From TheRegister: “..sysadmin Robin Bandy, who launched the alternative DNS co-op OpenNIC, proposed first to Be Inc and subsequently to Palm, that a community of developers be allowed to fork the BeOS code base. Under Bandy’s proposal, Palm would receive $10 million over ten years, and get the rights to all modifications made in the fork…That’s a pretty good deal, you’d imagine, for an asset that Palm doesn’t want or need, and that has a rapidly diminishing commercial value. BeOS was last updated almost two years ago in March 2000. And it almost matches the $11m Palm paid for Be’s assets in August. Developers would pay an annual subscription in return for the right to modify the forked OS code. That would help repay Palm, with a balance to the developers. Binaries produced as a result of the work would be freely distributable. Under these sums “It’s essentially an open source model within a limited community,” says Bandy. Both Be Inc’s former CEO Jean Louis Gassée and Palm’s current hardware chief Steve Sakoman found the unusual proposal intriguing, says Bandy, but Palm clearly has no intention of letting go. Palm had asked for an upfront figure of $2 million. But that proved a stumbling block, as the fledgling “BeFork” community didn’t exist apart from on paper.” Our Take: Hmm… $2m upfront just to start negotiating…

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