Re: Microsoft and Open Source
Extend. Embrace. Extinguish.
As a company the motivations of machinations of Microsoft have not changed as the management behind those motivations and machinations has not changed. There has been no high-level turnover within Microsoft. There has been no new blood. There has been no shakedown or shakeout of existing employees.
In short, there is no evidence to suggest that Microsoft is performing, or going to be performing, any different actions than they have done in the past. Nor is there any evidence to suggest that Microsoft's motivations and goals for their current and future performances have changed in any way, shape, or form.
Microsoft wants to control all software. Microsoft wants to be the only software "choice" available. Microsoft wants no competitors. Microsoft does not want to compete. Microsoft wants to eliminate any existing competition. Microsoft wants to erase the rights of the consumer. These are the core concepts that Steve Ballmer and the rest of the senior Microsoft Management consider when making all of their business choices.
Microsoft sees Open-Source Licenses as but a tool, and a very useful tool. Microsoft is quite willing to play by Open-License standards, and even fields a selection of it's own licenses that do adhere to the definitions of an Open-License according to the Free Software Foundation. However, those licenses are explicitly incompatible with the GPL: http://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-lis ... leLicenses
What Microsoft hopes to gain is what they've always tried to gain in the past. A better Working Relationship
with Open-Source developers and a Friendlier Public Image
. As far as Microsoft is concerned, if Microsoft can show that it can work with Open-Source developers, then it must be the Open-Source developers who are opposed to Microsoft that are the radicals that everybody should ignore.
Which community? The Open-Source communities banded around the ideals of the GPL and the concepts of the rights of the consumer will likely respond with extreme suspicion and distrust of any move Microsoft makes. Open-Source communities that don't agree with the GPL or the rights of the consumer will likely hail the latest advance from Microsoft as the greatest performance ever, and that all Open-Source communities should feel vindicated by the capitulation of the Mighty Microsoft.
And this highlights where I stand. Microsoft does not perform business decisions for moral or ethical reasons. Microsoft only acts upon choices presented by moral, ethical, or legal conflicts when the moral, ethical, or legal choice is something that will make the company look good or avoid a court-case.
In recent history we've watched attempts such as the financial backing of SCO, the attempt to abuse the Nortel Patents, the attempt to abuse the AOL Patents, and the extortion of money over Android/Linux that's been highlighted by Barnes and Nobel. I see no evidence of any kind to suggest that Microsoft is doing anything that I would want to support.
So how will I react to this latest performance from Microsoft? By calling Bullmanure until Microsoft knocks off it's bad behavior.