Monday, May 14, 2007

Pommeling A Pineapple

Mary Jo believes the GPL (the upcoming Public License for all Linux OS) is pressing Microsoft to make these wild statements about suing Linux users by Microsoft. I agree with that view. When GPL comes out Novell will either honor the Microsoft appendix as belonging to the Linux body as a whole or it will be lopped off and Microsoft will be right back where it started; With no apparent third-party interoperation available and a crippled internet/network affiliation strategy or approach.

What adds to my perception are the other timings and events as relate to the overarching subject of the VCSY intellectual property allegedly infringed upon by Microsoft .Net.

These events suggest Microsoft is cut off from joining others in using this sort of IP as long as the VCSY issue goes unresolved. Apparently Microsoft brains feel the patent has teeth so they elect to delay the most significant advancements from their $20 billion period of R&D and hack off any inferrence the subject matter issue is leaking out of Microsoft applications and operations bounds.

If they were more confident they would bring out a Silverlight for designers/developers. As Silverlight is we see a pale content/format automation environment and no facilities for integrating functionality management and governance as is needed in dynamic distributed application services.

So, I write the following blurbs and blathers.

To Wit:
May 14th, 2007

GPLv3 the impetus for Microsoft’s latest Linux attack campaign

Posted by Mary Jo Foley @ 4:35 am Categories: Corporate strategy, Legal, Linux, Novell

For those who prefer the short version of the statement, Microsoft suggests the press use this quote, attributable to Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft Vice President of Intellectual Property and Licensing:
“Even the founder of the Free Software Foundation, Richard Stallman, noted last year that Linux infringes well over 200 patents from multiple companies. The real question is not whether there exist substantial patent infringement issues, but what to do about them. Microsoft and Novell already developed a solution that meets the needs of customers, furthers interoperability, and advances the interests of the industry as a whole. Any customer that is concerned about Linux IP issues needs only to obtain their open source subscriptions from Novell.”
What's got Microsoft so spoooked? As the Fortune article noted, the GPL v3's provisions regarding the Microsoft-Novell deal suggest that Microsoft itself could be considered a "Linux distributor," and thus beholden to the GPL v3 terms. And even if that doesn't happen, under the GPL v3, other Linux distributors would be barred from doing deals like the one struck by Novell and Microsoft.
For the past few months, Microsoft publicly has pooh-poohed these arguments. But the company's latest decision to go public with claimed patent infringement numbers and other inflammatory statements, to me, shows Microsoft must think the GPL v3 has teeth.

More at article

Microsoft takes on the free world

Microsoft claims that free software like Linux, which runs a big chunk of corporate America, violates 235 of its patents. It wants royalties from distributors and users. Users like you, maybe. Fortune's Roger Parloff reports.

By Roger Parloff, Fortune senior editor
...there's a shadow hanging over Linux and other free software, and it's being cast by Microsoft (Charts, Fortune 500). The Redmond behemoth asserts that one reason free software is of such high quality is that it violates more than 200 of Microsoft's patents. And as a mature company facing unfavorable market trends and fearsome competitors like Google (Charts, Fortune 500), Microsoft is pulling no punches: It wants royalties. If the company gets its way, free software won't be free anymore.

More at article

MS to eradicate GPL, hence Linux

If you can't beat 'em, criminalize 'em

Published Tuesday 25th June 2002 22:30 GMT

See body of article

My point: Note the date. They've been throwing this rhetoric out for some time. GPL v3 signing coming up shortly portends a flood of servers (virtual - the hardware will support the number of operating system images you will run - Microsoft, once promising unlimited virtual machines [and giving a bunch away to get a footprint] now says virtual instances of Vista will be limited to what can fit on the server core... no virtualized virtual environments... thus, no real interoperation, thus, we find matronly MS. FT clinging to Novell like he's dear death. Like menopause has finally sapped her of all vitality and imagination and, faced with watching Mr. Novel cavort with his many interoperative clientele, wants to be at least invited to the party even if she can't chew her own crumpets.

This barrage by Ballmer at the CEOs CIOs and Cheif Counsels of the world betrays the bravado of Vista and Longhorn's future and vision. Microsoft needs Linux far more than Linux needs Microsoft. Vista is not necessary unless you insist on running Microsoft products. You know who you are. You're the kind we all used to laugh at in the 80's and 90's ... the folks who bought IBM because "nobody ever got fired recommending IBM". Now, the arguable truth is the user paradigm will shift quickly... thin clients across a wide swath of business will make PC's a diminishing commodity - the ROI will astound corporate watchers.

And Microsoft installations will become expensive overnight. They want the same thing to happen to Linux... as one doubts they could survive selling Vista bundles for $3 in th USA and Europe. Might as well be pencils on the street corner if you're reduced to that.

Still, for the average user, Vista is a wasteful exercise in too much too often with nothing to show. If virtualization and arbitration features projected by Ms. Ft (known to some as the "patio restoration" period) had actually been shipped with Vista and Yukon and WinFS et al for a more prominent user's place than developer place, we would all be watching the dwindling fortunes of Linux as Vista would actually offer something for the money beyond last years wrap. As it stands, Microsoft sets their developers up to take the hit on infringement on applications and systems they build using .Net.

Linux users will have interoperability as provided by Red Hat and IBM work behind the scenes. Microsoft users will apparently only gain access to that kind of capability by mating up with a Linux proxy. For some reason Microsoft can't virtualize and interoperate with other packages not built on the .Net framework or by one of their other partnership links.

What happened to Microsoft's domination of XML? Hmmm? I do believe it went the way of the girdle once too much was 'where?' to make it go 'there!'? Moomoos are the next bastion.

How can I be so confident? Because if Microsoft really had the goods in dynamic languages, arbitrary environments and virtualized components... we would see all that like chicken piled high on a plate. As it is we hear the clucking. We see feathers and chicken$#!@ all over the place... but not an egg nor a thigh one have we seen. I'm beginning to think it's Curly in the henhouse and the stooges are trying to sell this farm lot for a chicken ranch.

Need to turn up the public address system, Larry. We can hardly hear the nyuk nyuk nuances mixed with the cluck cluck declarations.

At it's most affordable basic price, Vista is XP with a dress. Soooo... Ms. Ft have made sure to have the store owners remove all XP's from shelves. The old girl comes off as transparently desperate. That's one hint and it's ugly but only if you're watching closely.

Microsoft making the deal with Novell was a more visible indication of trouble with "the plumbing", as it were. We can't interoperate as third party applications with Ms. Ft as there's no "equipment" to do so any more. Used to be in the golden years. You know... ought three... ought four when those XML parties made your jewels glitter like a $30 chandelier from Target.

That was embarrassment enough. But this latest display of untoward anxiety and hysteria over "other pretties" is disturbing to the cultural psyche.

Poor dear. This wail in the night sounds like a wounded heart. A realization the road of makeup and coverup and truss up and bind always comes to an end and all the ugly fat and wrinkled skin must finally succumb to gravity's taunts. We all have our moments of dread in front of the mirror, dearie. The mind is good at projecting a course of events from the currently known facts. It's a hunter and can tell where "this thing" will "end up" if "thrown". Wrinkles and aging is a trajectory in very slow motion so it happens daily while not showing up for years.

So become matronly is not all that tragic if you handle it with grace as others have:

IP attorney: Microsoft-Novell partnership creates internal competition for open source

By Jack Loftus, News Writer
08 Nov 2006

Bruce Sunstein, an intellectual property lawyer and head of the Boston-based firm Bromberg & Sunstein LLP, noticed the IBM undertones to last week's bombshell collaboration announcement between Microsoft and Novell almost immediately. Sunstein said that in this partnership Microsoft resembles IBM from five years ago in that it has recognized Linux is a legitimate means to an end when it comes to driving the company into new areas of business.

More at article

Would that other more sane and less bombastic voices in Microsoft could be heard above the din of garbage can banging and distractions. The neighborhood would much rather have commerce than combat.

Companies are like people in that they always resort to struggling and fighting when they see their life threatened. The direction they vent their frustration and anxiety and the strength with which they explore avenues for escape or remediation show whether their situation has paths for options or is blockaded and hopeless.

This all sounds as hopelessly frantic as can be.

So, for Ms. Ft to screech such a shrill panged love song to Mr. Novel and a warning to all suitors to avoid anything dressed in Linux because of a taint... That's a bit melodramatic and unpleasant.

IBM and the enabled and socialized web community are demonstrating daily the minimal impact to the networked corporate information structure and integrity and the "hole in the ocean" feeling users will have with open-source materials when the Microsoft products are jettisoned. Naturally there will be that licensing fee to address the patent issue with Microsoft, and Microsoft will again be relevant. but, that won't happen without a lot of plastic surgery and a significant diminishing of the current money pile to make room for a new income source.

My first indication this is a botox job on the eyes: They're putting this out in Fortune 500 Magazine to scare businesses. If it were aimed at scaring the technology companies directly this would have been released in that arena. They want a FUD cloud over the business decision to deploy Vista or Linux and they want the technology companies to believe... .what? that corporations will change their minds about buying Vista and will stick with Linux but only a Novell Linux?

Good luck. When this next version of GPL pops out of the woom there will be a million aunts and uncles and not one parent to be found. Microsoft will have to accommodate or evaporate.

Anyway, here's something worth a read to familiarize yourself with the open-source movement of which IBM is a proactive agent for change. VCSY has patents which have secured relationships... or the entire thing was a scam. Your choice. Read a bit and tell me what you think. That's what the "Comment" hyperlink is for. I must scare the crap out of people. Nobody ever comments on my posts. I know at least ONE person who would like to comment, but I never hear a peep. They've all gone underground or morphed into an "optimistic VCSY long".

...The summit consisted of talks by Microsoft people, including Bill Hilf and Sam Ramji. Sam runs the Open Source lab, and Bill is General Manager of Platform Strategy, started the Open Source lab and now also runs the Get the Facts campaign. There were other talks about SOA, IE7, Xbox, PowerShell and a whole bunch of stuff which was largely unrelated to our work. The talks were interesting, particularly as I haven’t really been involved deeply in Microsoft technologies for a few years, however I also spent some time in discussions unrelated to the agenda.

...Some of the talks would start with Microsoft technology and then at the very end say “by the way, here is how it is better than (insert Open Source equivalent)”, which seemed a little patronising. I guess they were trying to change out minds. This was most evident in the IIS talk where at the very end the guy started seriously bagging out Apache, much to the amusement of several attendees who debated his opinion.

Bill Hilf had been talked up by several notable Open Source characters, including Tridge, however his talk (which launched the Summit) was very disappointing. It was arrogant, limited, and appeared to miss the larger picture of Open Source. He talked about how they are focused on Open Source only as a development model and business model, which would be fair enough, however he went to to rant about how he is not running a “jihad”, that Open Source is “writing and licensing software. That’s it. It isn’t freedom, it isn’t a movement”, and how he’s just here to sell licences. I questioned Bill and Sam on the sustainability of a strategy only seeing Open Source as a mechanism for driving licence revenue, as every successful company building revenue around Open Source has multiple revenue models and usually a strong services approach....

... Sam and Bill both also made the unfortunate mistake of painting any Open Source people who didn’t comply exactly with their views as fanatics and extreme, which isn’t a great way to endear them to the community. I had to really sit Sam down and say every time you compare the vast majority of Open Source people to fanatics, you are only making it harder for yourself to successfully participate. He was, to his credit, open to constructive criticism. I can understand his position being in between a rock (Microsoft) and a hard place (the community), however I think for him to succeed he and his team really need to keep grounded through keeping in touch with the community. ...

More at article
worth a read

You could also tell them people get a little nervous when people throw things.

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