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Microsoft wants money

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Steve Ballmer looks like a gorilla or a street thug in that picture. RMS looks like a hacker Jesus.

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That article says it all. M$ is in trouble with $hareholders. It's a money issue.

Lets hope that the free program writers can prove their independent writing of the programs/files if it comes to it. But court, if it comes at all, could be years away.

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DJ_Haruko said:

RMS looks like a hacker Jesus.


Jesus sure let himself go these last 2000 years. :/

EDIT: Intresting read.

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Searcher said:
That article says it all. M$ is in trouble with $hareholders. It's a money issue.

The article does not seem to talk about that; it just looks like a threat, probably as a response to the GPL v2, in the ongoing pushing and shoving with the big Linux distributors and associated companies that stand between, with Microsoft on one side and the Free Software Foundation on the other.

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Searcher said:

That article says it all. M$ is in trouble with $hareholders. It's a money issue.

Lets hope that the free program writers can prove their independent writing of the programs/files if it comes to it. But court, if it comes at all, could be years away.

It's not quite like that. The patents in question aren't about CODE copying, but rather CONCEPT copying. UI elements, methods of performing operations, things like that. That's what makes this so tough, there's no need to prove one wrote something independently if it clearly demonstrates a violation of a patented process/style/method.

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From the article linked above:

-------Quote--------
"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."

"In 2003, Microsoft executives sat down to assess what the company should do with all those patents. There were three choices. First, it could do nothing, effectively donating them to the development community. Obviously that "wasn't very attractive in terms of our shareholders," Smith says."

"So Microsoft took the third choice, which was to begin licensing its patents to other companies in exchange for either royalties or access to their patents (a "cross-licensing" deal). In December 2003, Microsoft's new licensing unit opened for business, and soon the company had signed cross-licensing pacts with such tech firms as Sun, Toshiba, SAP and Siemens."
------ End Quote-----------

So if you don't agree that is just fine with me. I still say all of the above quoted info is all about money. Unfavorable market trends is a key wording there. They are not going to be able to continue with the kind of growth they have seen in the past and realize the $hareholders are going to get angry.

I was in the investment community for many years as a broker and can tell you for sure this kind of wording is always about money and only to a lesser degree about those other things mentioned above. So I will agree it may be partly about concept copying but I doubt it is the main reason this is all coming to a head so to speak. It all smells of $money$

Edit:typo

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Searcher said:
They are not going to be able to continue with the kind of growth they have seen in the past and realize the $hareholders are going to get angry.

My point (or the article's) was/is that they don't threaten (or eventually even sue to a greater degree) mainly for the money directly, but as a tool to gain money, or more properly, power over the competition (for market dominance), not that money isn't involved.

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Searcher said:

So if you don't agree that is just fine with me. I still say all of the above quoted info is all about money. Unfavorable market trends is a key wording there. They are not going to be able to continue with the kind of growth they have seen in the past and realize the $hareholders are going to get angry.

I was in the investment community for many years as a broker and can tell you for sure this kind of wording is always about money and only to a lesser degree about those other things mentioned above. So I will agree it may be partly about concept copying but I doubt it is the main reason this is all coming to a head so to speak. It all smells of $money$


Also note that this is coming three months (i.e. about one quarter) after the release of Vista. MS flooded the market, and now Vista isn't just competing with Unix/Linux and Apple, but XP too.

MS over-estimated. Vista is not the same step forward in utility and stability that XP was from 9x, and the average consumer doesn't find any benefit from switching. There also isn't the need for the layperson to upgrade their computer as there was during the 9x period. Hell, I'm typing this on my primary machine, which is a fairly basic Dell from '02.

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Dr. Zin said:
MS over-estimated. Vista is not the same step forward in utility and stability that XP was from 9x, and the average consumer doesn't find any benefit from switching. There also isn't the need for the layperson to upgrade their computer as there was during the 9x period. Hell, I'm typing this on my primary machine, which is a fairly basic Dell from '02.

Well, overestimation or not, without doing something like this they were likely going to lose ground, with upgrades to Apple and free OSs (and other or associated sevices). I don't think this is a clear indication that they are in trouble, but that they are struggling.

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myk said:

Well, overestimation or not, without doing something like this they were likely going to lose ground, with upgrades to Apple and free OSs (and other or associated sevices). I don't think this is a clear indication that they are in trouble, but that they are struggling.

I'm not so sure. If anything, they are in at least a little bit of trouble. Dell has started offering XP again on machines, and also plan on offering Linux pretty soon, both of which are probably not sitting well with MS. After all, this is an OEM, and if you rely on OEMs as a major method of distribution, this is a pretty scary thought.

I think people are starting to ask "Why Microsoft?" and that such a question is posing a threat to MS that they know they should be afraid of. Especially since with GNU/Linux, they can't sue or buyout a company to make it go away. They can try to coax people into buying their stuff again (in China, MS is launching a $3 bundled version of XP and Office...), but I think people are starting to see that they do this.

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The problem is that you can patent simple ideas now. It's totally ridiculous.

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(Stallman insists that "GNU/Linux" is the proper name, and he refuses to give interviews to reporters unless they promise to call it that in every reference. In part for that reason, he was not interviewed for this article.)


Ha ha.

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Microsoft has no proof, however. They're just trying to scare Linux for some reason, and it isn't even working. The whole reason why any court date is estimated to be a year or two away, is because people will forget about MS ever doing this by the time that comes around.

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