[OTP] RE: Linux stifles innovation...

From: David D.W. Downey (pgpkeys@hislinuxbox.com)
Date: Thu Feb 15 2001 - 15:43:50 EST

On Thu, 15 Feb 2001, Alan Olsen wrote:

> I expect the next thing that will happen is that they will get patents on
> key portions of their protocols and then start enforcing them.

They can only patent their own creations. I'd like to see them try to get
patents for their "extensions" to TCP or some other bastardization they've
made to the various standard protocols. They'd be isolating themselves out
of the market in a heartbeat. Who would be willing to pay for their
breaking of standards? Their existing user base perhaps but not many more
than that, save the few companies that decided it was in their best
interests to pay the fee. More than likely they'll kill their own market
they go that route.

> With the various IP laws that have been passed in the last few years in
> the US (and through WIPO) they will have a large brick to try and hit us
> with. (IMHO these laws pretty much allow large entities to buy their
> markets and are the biggest threat to innovation out there.)

OK, WIPO? Never heard of it. Got a URL?

> Actually I am sending copies of his rant out to all of my friends who
> still use Microsoft products.

hehe, already done that. Got some GOOD feedback off of that. So far 5 of
the 10 I've emailed have responded in rage. Don't know too many humans
that take kindly to being politely called an idiot in public, which is
basically what M$ has been saying. "You're an idiot if you use Linux
because Linux stifles inovation. Thus you are a pawn of the Linux movement
which makes you part of the threat to intellectual property (Read this as
you are a part of the threat to my bottom line.

> If that is the attitude they have towards their customers and the
> development community then it is time to get away while you still can.

Microsoft relies rather heavily on the belief that their business model
has locked their client base in. What they don't understand is that, the
"movement" of Opensource as they so call it, will start to cost them even
MORE money than we do now. Why? because as more people get pissed off at
the mindframe of M$ and realize that there are comparable OpenSource
products out there, they'll be leaving M$. Admittedly this will start out
as a small trickle, taking place over the next say 2 years.

Microsoft needs to wake up to the understanding that the only way they
will survive if the "Linux movement" (their words not mine) gets ticked
off enough to truly start a concerted effort to make open source based
replacements for Microsoft products, is to play nice with Linux and
OpenSource products in general, they're dead in the water.

> Of course, the reason I moved over all my development to Linux in the
> first place what that I did not have to worry about being screwed over by
> a "corporate strategy" or have the license terms changed on the next
> release or have to pay for something over and over again in the vain
> attempt to get something to work.

I started with Linux in 94 because I thought it was a replacement for
Windows. Even back then, when Linux was still a dog of a kernel, it seemed
to exude power and inovation. (My personal belief so no one flame me for
that line.)

> With Linux I can read the source. There are no hidden interfaces. No
> mystical archane knowledge that you have to pay the company to learn get
> the job done. It is all there and it all works. (Or if it does not, then
> the tools exist to make it work.)

Microsoft relies HEAVILY on the changes they've made in their product
lines to hide details from the consumer, some of whom NEED to know those
changes. This is just a case of a company that's chosen a business model
that can't compete with it's exact opposite. They know it, we know it, and
their advantage right now is that the general public DOESN'T know it.

I do feel kind of sorry for Microsoft. Their attornies and marketing force
must have tons of ulcers trying to figure out how to beat (not just
co-exist with) a product that has no clearly defined (read suable) human
owner, and that changes on an hourly basis like the sea changes the layout
of the sand on a beach. Severely tough to fight something like that.

> I wonder what kind of law they will try to push to outlaw Open Source? >
> If this is his idea of "The American Way" then he needs to take a basic
> civics course. He obviously slept through the last one.

He wasn't sleeping. He was down the hall in Corporate Raiding 101.

David D.W. Downey - RHCE
Consulting Engineer
Ensim Corporation - Sunnyvale, CA

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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Feb 15 2001 - 21:00:27 EST