Topic: Microsoft offering Windows source code  (Read 8846 times)

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Offline Nemesis

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Microsoft offering Windows source code
« on: January 27, 2006, 09:06:19 pm »
Link to full article

In a nutshell:

1/ Microsoft ordered by the EU to document certain protocols by Dec 15th last year.

2/ Microsoft delivered 12,000 pages of documentation.

3/ Reviewed for compliance by someone (who's name escapes me) who was on a list provided by Microsoft to the EU as acceptable to do the review

4/ After he finished laughing hysterically he informs the EU that the document does not match their criteria.

5/ Microsoft told put up by Jan 22nd or face $2.4 million per day fine retroactive to Dec 15th

6/ Microsoft claims that they don't have and cannot create such documentation and offers to open windows source to external people who pay a licence fee and accept a EULA.  Fee and EULA not yet disclosed

7/ The EU is considering the situation and has delayed the retroactive fine but it may still his Microsoft.

I don't think that the EU will go for it as it has already been stated that you can't use the code you license and you can't use it for open source.
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Offline Strat

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2006, 10:18:20 pm »
Why should they be allowed to copy the code?  Thats just plain cheating.

If they want to make programs that are more compatible with thier OS's, and they don't like the documentation, then the source IS the solution though.

Anyhow, after reading all of that it seems to me to be another case of: 'You just can't please some people'.

People will always dislike Microsoft becuase, well, they just want to.  At its core, it's not logical.

What if they get source? And 10 years of support to read it?  People will still hate Microsoft.

For the legal remifications, time will tell; life will go on. 

There are many other industries in the world where one or two companies rules a market, and you never hear of them.  As for OS's, I've used many, and dont dislike any of them.  They all have thier places and strengths.

Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2006, 11:02:03 pm »
Err...  So... Would some care to explain wtf is going on?


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Offline Just plain old Punisher

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2006, 01:47:56 am »
Err...  So... Would some care to explain wtf is going on?

Sure, for 10,000 dollars and you have to sign a EULA promising not to understand the explination or to pass it on to others.

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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2006, 03:29:53 am »
Err...  So... Would some care to explain wtf is going on?

Sure, for 10,000 dollars and you have to sign a EULA promising not to understand the explination or to pass it on to others.

A bit short and lacking in details but Punisher does essentially have it right.

Slightly longer form.

Like the U.S. the E.U. found Microsoft to be a monopoly that had illegally abused its monopoly status.  The solution was that Microsoft was fined and ordered to document certain protocols so that they could be used by competitors for interoperating. 

Microsoft claims that they don't have such documentation and can't create it.  They want to license parts of their source code on terms yet to be revealed but that excludes open source software (Linux, BSD/UNIX etc).  In essence they want competitors to examine Microsofts code and then document it themselves for cloning purposes while agreeing to unspecified and possibly expensive terms that could potentially leave competitors open to law suits. 

Since a significant proportion of Microsofts current competitors are open source excluding those programs (in my opinion) violates the intent of the settlement ordered by the E.U..  Microsoft is also currently in trouble in the U.S. for "foot dragging" on compliance with the 2000 settlement orders.  In the U.S. they have also tried to put high prices and onerous EULAs on information ordered to be provided by the courts and have been fought on that but each time they just back off a little and have to be fought again while they claim to have complied with the orders.

This is just another example of Microsoft breaking the law and trying to evade the penalty while claiming to be "abused".
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2006, 12:09:02 pm »
Why should they be allowed to copy the code?  Thats just plain cheating.

Actually they don't want the code they want specifications.  But once you have seen the code you have legal liabilities if you come up with something "too close" to the MS code. 

If they want to make programs that are more compatible with thier OS's, and they don't like the documentation, then the source IS the solution though.

Professor Neil Barret was the one who rejected the documentation.  The EU courts chose him from a list provided by Microsoft of people acceptable to them to review the documentation.  Microsofts own chosen expert says they have not complied.

The source is not the solution.  It is a method of Microsoft saying we don't want to spend the illegally acquired billions making documentation so we will transfer the costs to other companies while leaving them legal traps that we can use later against them.

Now I am not a programmer but consider this.  If a given Microsoft program using a given protocol sends data in 128 bit chunks anyone studying that program will think that the spec requires 128 bit sizes and will code like that.  Later they may find that other Microsoft programs use different sizes of data chunks because the actual specification is 64 bit to 1024 bit.  Because they don't have the actual specifications they can't know that and can't choose a size that is most efficient for their own code.

Microsoft can also at that point change anything they want and point the finger at the other guy when things go wrong because by definition what they do is the spec. 

Think of the Windows metafile bug just recently revealed.  Anyone trying to deduce a specification from code would have implemented the same flaw.  Presumably it was not part of the specification and would not have been produced by someone actually working to spec.

Anyhow, after reading all of that it seems to me to be another case of: 'You just can't please some people'.

In this case Microsoft can by obeying the court order.

People will always dislike Microsoft becuase, well, they just want to.  At its core, it's not logical.

Just like people will always hate the guy who mugged them.  Hating criminals is pretty normal. Seems pretty logical to me. 

What if they get source? And 10 years of support to read it?  People will still hate Microsoft.

For the legal remifications, time will tell; life will go on. 

Legal ramifications is exactly where the problem is.

To use the MS source you need to establish a team that only studies the source and produces documentation (which Microsoft says that they cannot do themselves) which an entirely separate team has to use to then make your program compliant with the spec. 

Those programmers who studied the MS code are now "contaminated" and are pretty much unable to ever again work in the area that the code they studied covered.  The area that they obviously were expert in or they wouldn't have been hired to do the study in the first place.

Now if 3rd party companies can produce documentation from the code why can't Microsoft?  Why should other companies be required to spend the money to create documentation that Microsoft has been ordered to create?  I would guess that the Microsoft license to the code will prevent companies from sharing or selling that documentation so that the other companies can't combine efforts.

I hope that the EU imposes the fine and tells Microsoft that the fine will increase if they don't OBEY THE LAW.  Sooner or later Microsoft would have to obey the law because the expense of breaking it would finally be too great.

If Microsoft truly cannot produce the documentation what does that say about the quality of their code?  If they can't do it with internal resources then it is time to hire an outside firm to do it for them and to then require their coders to adhere to the documentation that is created.

There are many other industries in the world where one or two companies rules a market, and you never hear of them.  As for OS's, I've used many, and don't dislike any of them.  They all have their places and strengths.

Because those companies don't systematically break the law to maintain the monopoly?

Using your monopoly in one area to extend it into other areas is the crime that Microsoft keeps being judged guilty of. 

Here is the method.

1/ Company X produces a new product and creates a sales niche.

2/ Company X grows that niche until Microsoft says "there is good money there and it should be ours"

3/ Microsoft goes to PC companies that have bundling agreements with Company X and says "here is our version of Company Xs product".  If you bundle their product with your PCs instead of ours you will find the price of Windows (and Office if also bundled) goes up enough to compensate us for the losses

4/ Company X finds themselves cut off from being bundled with PCs.  Since Microsoft makes similar agreements for prime shelf space in retail stores many of those retail stores will either not be able to dedicate space to both products or will be forced to display it in hard to find locations.

5/ Company X is now back as a niche product or destroyed without regard to who had the better product.

There are other methods. 

For example you may have heard of the Microsoft Windows beta that would crash with an error stating that the DOS was incompatible.  The beta checked for DR-DOS and crashed if it was found.  Not because of actual incompatibilities but merely because it was detected.  The result was that companies who were using the beta to develop programs compatible with the next version of Windows wouldn't support those programs if you used Windows on DR-DOS, after all DR-DOS was incompatible with Windows and any problems caused were Digital Research's fault not theirs. 

The next phase was to combine the OS and the OE (Operating Environment), not because they needed to be combined but to kill off DR-DOS which is exactly what happened. 

Kill any company that threatens the monopoly or who is in a market that Microsoft can add as yet another monopoly.  Which is exactly why they want to exclude Open Source.  Steps one to 5 only work in the market Microsoft is used to.  The Open Source community works outside those rules and is pretty much immune to the normal Microsoft tactics.  The only ways Microsoft currently has to fight them is FUD (which they are doing) and keeping them from connecting into the dominant Microsoft systems. 

Next for Microsoft will be using software patents (which Microsoft is a proponent of though they formerly opposed them as stifling innovation).  The FAT patent is likely to be the first one used, at least until it is defeated in court and it will be at great expense.
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Offline Commander Maxillius

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2006, 02:10:05 pm »
I say Microsoft should give the EU the code for Windows as well as an implementation guide 4 days before releasing Longhorn.

OR, Billy should revoke the entire EU's use licence, as is his right according to the EULA. Then he should buy lots of airtime in the EU to tell people affected people that the reason theiir PCs are no longer supported is that their leaders have their heads so far up their arses that they forgot to read the EULA of the product they're fighting over.  Then, release a virus that deletes the registry of machines whose clock settings are set to european time zones so that non-EU machines are unaffected.



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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2006, 02:32:05 pm »
I say Microsoft should give the EU the code for Windows as well as an implementation guide 4 days before releasing Longhorn.

OR, Billy should revoke the entire EU's use licence, as is his right according to the EULA. Then he should buy lots of airtime in the EU to tell people affected people that the reason theiir PCs are no longer supported is that their leaders have their heads so far up their arses that they forgot to read the EULA of the product they're fighting over.  Then, release a virus that deletes the registry of machines whose clock settings are set to european time zones so that non-EU machines are unaffected.

-Maxillius the True Bastard ;D


So what you are saying is that Microsoft should be allowed to continue and even escalate its criminal acts without punishment or making restitution?

How about in the U.S.?  They have the same type of problems under the law there.  In fact if the U.S. had handled things well back in 2000 the EU would have dropped everything as having been resolved.  The U.S. dropped the ball when the administration changed hands and suddenly the DOJ instead of being hardline became very softline.

Link to full article
Quote
But in a filing to the U.S. District Court in Washington, the Justice Department and 10 states said Microsoft was dragging its feet and its last filing had "not detailed the seriousness of the current situation."

The company had fallen significantly behind and needed to "dramatically increase the resources devoted to responding to technical documentation issues."

The U.S. filing said Microsoft had acknowledged it provided inaccurate information and on some occasions had been unable to provide accurate information.


I suppose that you wouldn't mind if Microsoft were to do as you suggest in the U.S. as well as the EU?
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Offline Bonk

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2006, 02:46:51 pm »
It never ceases to amaze me that people want to punish Microsoft for winning at the capitalist game. <shakes head> Make up your bloody minds people, is it a free market or not?

Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2006, 03:20:14 pm »
It never ceases to amaze me that people want to punish Microsoft for winning at the capitalist game. <shakes head> Make up your bloody minds people, is it a free market or not?

Define free market?  Is it like freedom of speech?  You know the freedom that has certain limits like your not allowed to yell fire in a crowded theater unless you really have reason to believe there is a fire?  Just as free speech has limits so does the free market.

When Microsoft went to customers and said "sell our competitors products and we will hurt you" it wasn't what I would consider a free market. 

In a free market if a distributor decides to bundle an Office Suite other than Microsoft Office Microsoft would not raise the price of Windows to that distributor.

In a free market Microsoft could not have forbidden distributors from installing Netscape Navigator on PCs with Windows.

In a free market if I buy a PC to put Linux on it Microsoft would not be paid too, afterall I'm not buying their product why should I be forced to pay for it?

When the media was riddled with reports that the Microsoft DOS developers had as a slogan "DOS isn't done until Lotus won't run" it wasn't a free market. 

When Microsoft used control of Windows to crash developers Windows betas on DR-DOS while telling them DR-DOS was not compatible to make those companies drop support for DR-DOS the market was not free. 

When competitors have to worry that their product may not work after each and every Microsoft patch but the Microsoft products all will the market is not free. 

Letting Microsoft screw over competitors by their control of Windows is not what I call a free market. 

When Microsoft threatened legal action for showing how to run a Microsoft product under Wine at a show the market wasn't free.  They claimed that you are only allowed to use the product you bought under Windows not under any other OS.  They claimed the right to dictate how you use the product that you bought.  Not exactly what I call free.

Microsoft believes on freedom for Microsoft and for no one else.

Once upon a time IBM did the same types of things and had the same legal fights.  Eventually when they realized they were going to lose they prepared for a breakup and reformed their behaviour.  In  the end they eliminated the need for a breakup. 

Microsoft should learn from that instead of insisting on a bitter fight to the end where either Microsoft beats the governments of the world or they get destroyed.  I don't think Microsoft can win if they fight to the end.  I would much rather they emulated IBM and survived.

I believe on the free market I should be able to choose whose products to use without Microsoft using its corporate might to compel anyone on the chain between us to make sure my choice is limited to paying Microsoft.  I believe in a free market.  I just don't believe that under the current Microsoft hegemony that we actually have one in PC software and that needs to change.  That will change without regards to the desires of the King of Redmond.
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Offline Bonk

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2006, 04:30:38 pm »
The way I see it, all is fair and love and war. The principle of the free market economy is to rip off thy neighbor, its all out war as far as I'm concerned.

Quote
When competitors have to worry that their product may not work after each and every Microsoft patch but the Microsoft products all will the market is not free. 
Take a close look at the silliness known as Sun Java.

Please re-examine the logic of this statement:
Quote
Letting Microsoft screw over competitors by their control of Windows is not what I call a free market.
Windows is Microsoft's product, they should have full control over it. There is the Peter Norton school of product subversion however... ;)

Quote
Once upon a time IBM did the same types of things and had the same legal fights.  Eventually when they realized they were going to lose they prepared for a breakup and reformed their behaviour.  In  the end they eliminated the need for a breakup.
And where is OS2 today? ;)

I still think QNX is a far superior OS, however you do not see any governments trying to tell them what to do with their product. ;)

« Last Edit: January 28, 2006, 04:42:23 pm by Bonk »

Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2006, 05:46:47 pm »
The way I see it, all is fair and love and war. The principle of the free market economy is to rip off thy neighbor, its all out war as far as I'm concerned.

Where do you draw the line?  False advertising (Microsoft has been convicted)?  Lying about your competitors (Microsoft has been convicted)?  Software Piracy (Microsoft has been convicted)?  Guido being sent to break your kneecaps or torch your offices (Microsoft has yet to be accused of that).  Where is the line that you say is too far?  There pretty much has to be one somewhere I'd like to know the limits that you think a company is/should be allowed to go to.

To me if one side can use compulsion to force the use of their products the market is not free and Microsoft has been doing that for a long time. 
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Offline Just plain old Punisher

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2006, 06:24:55 pm »
LOL I'm reminded of that Simpsons episode where Homer creates a useless internet home-business and Bill Gates comes to "Buy him out"

Hehe, like 2 burly nerds come in and trash the place.

Then Bill Gates says "Oh I didn't get rich by writing checks Mr Simpson"

Classic.

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Offline E_Look

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2006, 10:39:53 pm »
Ah, Bonk, you misunderstand capitalism.  There is laissez faire capitalism which in the end benefits no one except at the time for the few practitioners who survive.  That capitalism makes use of human greed is a truism; but it is also a two way street- greed will use capitalism as well!

Capitalism must be regulated, to protect it, to protect people in general from those immoral ones who would abuse the economic and stylistic freedom that capitalism affords.  Water is good.  Water is necessary for our continued existence.  But try to only drink just water and nothing else, and eat nothing, but drink water.

Offline Just plain old Punisher

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2006, 02:31:03 am »
Spoken like a man who hasn't purchased a solid gold car with money he embezzeled from his companies old widows and orphans fund.

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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #15 on: January 29, 2006, 06:23:23 am »
Why should they be allowed to copy the code?  Thats just plain cheating.

Well, most microsoft code seems to be based on stolen apple and unix code...


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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #16 on: January 29, 2006, 07:26:16 am »
Well, most microsoft code seems to be based on stolen apple and unix code...

Any actual evidence of that? 

I know that Microsoft has used BSD/Unix code for the TCP/IP stack which is perfectly legal under the BSD license so long as they don't remove the copyright notices.  Apple uses BSD code the same way as does Linux.    Nothing wrong with that it is totally legal and above board.

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Offline E_Look

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #17 on: January 29, 2006, 12:46:44 pm »
Spoken like a man who hasn't purchased a solid gold car with money he embezzeled from his companies old widows and orphans fund.

... spoken like a man who has watched others purchase solid gold cars with money they embezzled from their companies old widows and orphans fund.

Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #18 on: January 29, 2006, 03:09:03 pm »
For those who may be interested in other Microsoft lawsuits:

A List of Microsoft Litigation
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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #19 on: January 29, 2006, 04:19:20 pm »
Well, most microsoft code seems to be based on stolen apple and unix code...

Any actual evidence of that? 

I know that Microsoft has used BSD/Unix code for the TCP/IP stack which is perfectly legal under the BSD license so long as they don't remove the copyright notices.  Apple uses BSD code the same way as does Linux.    Nothing wrong with that it is totally legal and above board.



So, if he's willing to benefit from the generosity of others, ie. the OS movement, perhaps it's time, after years of earning billions through the use of OS transfer protocols, to give something back? 

Incidentally, I don't recall seeing any requester pop up to tell me that I was using a BSD/Unix protocol the last time I used Outlook Express... Perhaps it's hidden away insome small print somewhere?

And yes,there is actual evidence...  The guy has been embroiled in more law suits than I've had hot dinners...


I mean, Jesus Christ, we might not have it 100% right in Europe, but at least over here there is a debate about how much bullying massive corporations should be allowed to get away with, and I can assure you, if Microsoft was based in London, Gates would have had his neck reeled in a long time ago...  The practices of the Freemarket (and I hate that name because "free" implies some kind of benefit to the consumer and some kind of ethical dimension, neither of which exist) must have some ethical restrictions on them, and Gates has gotten away with murder over the last twenty years... 

Using OS products while trying to shut down every single competitor?  I detest double standards, I always have, that is the failing in humans that pisses me off more than anything else, and Gates is guilty of some bloody big ones...


   
Microsoft Windows: 32-bit extensions and a graphical shell for a 16-bit patch to an 8-bit operating system originally coded for a 4-bit microprocessor, written by a 2-bit company that can't stand 1-bit of competition


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Offline E_Look

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #20 on: January 29, 2006, 04:34:15 pm »
... Microsoft Windows: 32-bit extensions and a graphical shell for a 16-bit patch to an 8-bit operating system originally coded for a 4-bit microprocessor, written by a 2-bit company that can't stand 1-bit of competition

Well, that 0.5 bit of cleverness deserves one full point!

Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #21 on: January 29, 2006, 05:09:42 pm »
... Microsoft Windows: 32-bit extensions and a graphical shell for a 16-bit patch to an 8-bit operating system originally coded for a 4-bit microprocessor, written by a 2-bit company that can't stand 1-bit of competition

Well, that 0.5 bit of cleverness deserves one full point!

I wish it was my cleverness, but your looking at a 0.25 bit of plagerism...  ;)


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Offline Just plain old Punisher

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #22 on: January 29, 2006, 06:15:56 pm »
Spoken like a man who hasn't purchased a solid gold car with money he embezzeled from his companies old widows and orphans fund.

... spoken like a man who has watched others purchase solid gold cars with money they embezzled from their companies old widows and orphans fund.

Naw, I'll just charge the government for some of those $500.00 toilet seats.

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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #23 on: January 29, 2006, 06:39:45 pm »
So, if he's willing to benefit from the generosity of others, ie. the OS movement, perhaps it's time, after years of earning billions through the use of OS transfer protocols, to give something back? 


The authors of that code chose to put it on a license where the only thing that they required is the copyright notice.  Nothing else.  It was their code and they chose the license.

Giving something back would have been nice but nice isn't required by the BSD license.  Which of course is why Microsoft likes the BSD license and hates the (as MS calls it viral) GPL.

Incidentally, I don't recall seeing any requester pop up to tell me that I was using a BSD/Unix protocol the last time I used Outlook Express... Perhaps it's hidden away insome small print somewhere?


I think that you have to look at the binary with a hex editor but people have checked and the copyright notice was retained.  So long as the rules were followed and the rightful copyright holders are satisfied then I don't see any reason to complain.

And yes,there is actual evidence...  The guy has been embroiled in more law suits than I've had hot dinners...


Any of those suits for theft of Apple and/or Unix code?  I don't recall any.  Feel free to show me a link to one.  The Microsoft Lawsuits link that I provided would love to add such evidence if you can show it to me.

Any big company is going to have trouble with lawsuits.  Remember the recent Wendy's "finger" lawsuit?  The one where it turned out to be a frame up?  It does happen even to good companies.

I mean, Jesus Christ, we might not have it 100% right in Europe, but at least over here there is a debate about how much bullying massive corporations should be allowed to get away with, and I can assure you, if Microsoft was based in London, Gates would have had his neck reeled in a long time ago...  The practices of the Freemarket (and I hate that name because "free" implies some kind of benefit to the consumer and some kind of ethical dimension, neither of which exist) must have some ethical restrictions on them, and Gates has gotten away with murder over the last twenty years...


You mean England would have done something to stop William Gates III KBE?  They have found Microsoft guilty of false advertising (and complaints are currently being made on that score again) but I don't recall England actually doing something to limit him beyond saying "stop and please don't do it again".

The EU is currently trying to take quite a tough stand on things.  Hopefully they won't let him stall long enough to make any punishments irrelevant.  Also I hope  that the EU stands fast on software patents and the U.S. gets smart and backs off on them, but software patents are another issue.  ;)

Using OS products while trying to shut down every single competitor?  I detest double standards, I always have, that is the failing in humans that pisses me off more than anything else, and Gates is guilty of some bloody big ones...


So long as they don't violate the license of the Open Source products I have no problem with them using them.  It is very much in keeping with the Open Source spirit to share even with those only want to use and not give back.  Sort of shows who is really better doesn't it?  Microsoft takes and doesn't return.  Apple does some returning (even when the return isn't required).  RedHat not only returns but has made (and bought) original creations and given them as well. 

I think that over the long run Microsoft will fall because when they make an enemy it is for keeps and they aren't making new friends.  Sooner or later they will have too many enemies to stand alone against and no one to stand with them.  They can still buy new friends but such friends only last so long as the money keeps coming and that will fail them in time.

If Massachusetts succeeds with ODF that will open the flood gates and Microsoft will have begun to lose one of the twin pillars on which it is built.

But they could still turn it around if they dumped the current board and the new board decided to work with some ethics and legality.  I hope they do.  A lot of people will be hurt if/when Microsoft falls.  Unless Microsoft changes more will be hurt if they don't fall.  Fall or change are the only two futures I see for Microsoft and fall is so much more likely.
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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #24 on: January 29, 2006, 07:27:20 pm »
So, if he's willing to benefit from the generosity of others, ie. the OS movement, perhaps it's time, after years of earning billions through the use of OS transfer protocols, to give something back? 


The authors of that code chose to put it on a license where the only thing that they required is the copyright notice.  Nothing else.  It was their code and they chose the license.

Giving something back would have been nice but nice isn't required by the BSD license.  Which of course is why Microsoft likes the BSD license and hates the (as MS calls it viral) GPL.

Incidentally, I don't recall seeing any requester pop up to tell me that I was using a BSD/Unix protocol the last time I used Outlook Express... Perhaps it's hidden away insome small print somewhere?


I think that you have to look at the binary with a hex editor but people have checked and the copyright notice was retained.  So long as the rules were followed and the rightful copyright holders are satisfied then I don't see any reason to complain.

And yes,there is actual evidence...  The guy has been embroiled in more law suits than I've had hot dinners...


Any of those suits for theft of Apple and/or Unix code?  I don't recall any.  Feel free to show me a link to one.  The Microsoft Lawsuits link that I provided would love to add such evidence if you can show it to me.

Any big company is going to have trouble with lawsuits.  Remember the recent Wendy's "finger" lawsuit?  The one where it turned out to be a frame up?  It does happen even to good companies.

I mean, Jesus Christ, we might not have it 100% right in Europe, but at least over here there is a debate about how much bullying massive corporations should be allowed to get away with, and I can assure you, if Microsoft was based in London, Gates would have had his neck reeled in a long time ago...  The practices of the Freemarket (and I hate that name because "free" implies some kind of benefit to the consumer and some kind of ethical dimension, neither of which exist) must have some ethical restrictions on them, and Gates has gotten away with murder over the last twenty years...


You mean England would have done something to stop William Gates III KBE?  They have found Microsoft guilty of false advertising (and complaints are currently being made on that score again) but I don't recall England actually doing something to limit him beyond saying "stop and please don't do it again".

The EU is currently trying to take quite a tough stand on things.  Hopefully they won't let him stall long enough to make any punishments irrelevant.  Also I hope  that the EU stands fast on software patents and the U.S. gets smart and backs off on them, but software patents are another issue.  ;)

Using OS products while trying to shut down every single competitor?  I detest double standards, I always have, that is the failing in humans that pisses me off more than anything else, and Gates is guilty of some bloody big ones...


So long as they don't violate the license of the Open Source products I have no problem with them using them.  It is very much in keeping with the Open Source spirit to share even with those only want to use and not give back.  Sort of shows who is really better doesn't it?  Microsoft takes and doesn't return.  Apple does some returning (even when the return isn't required).  RedHat not only returns but has made (and bought) original creations and given them as well. 

I think that over the long run Microsoft will fall because when they make an enemy it is for keeps and they aren't making new friends.  Sooner or later they will have too many enemies to stand alone against and no one to stand with them.  They can still buy new friends but such friends only last so long as the money keeps coming and that will fail them in time.

If Massachusetts succeeds with ODF that will open the flood gates and Microsoft will have begun to lose one of the twin pillars on which it is built.

But they could still turn it around if they dumped the current board and the new board decided to work with some ethics and legality.  I hope they do.  A lot of people will be hurt if/when Microsoft falls.  Unless Microsoft changes more will be hurt if they don't fall.  Fall or change are the only two futures I see for Microsoft and fall is so much more likely.


Then feel free to continue your love affair with a gargantuan sloth that has held the computing industry back years...  No skin off my nose...


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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #25 on: January 29, 2006, 07:31:34 pm »
It is very much in keeping with the Open Source spirit to share even with those only want to use and not give back.

I don't recall Stallman or Torvald mentioning earning Bill Gates a living in any of their mission statements...  It is in the spirit of the OS movement for any code that Microsoft have modified or utilized that was open source to be spread without restriction...  There is no tennet in the OS movement to say that anyone can appropriate OS code, write it into a Closed Source Operating System and pass it off as their own...

There is no doubt that what made PC sales Mushroom in the late nineties was the Internet, and none of it's protocols were written by Bill Gates...  Shame Shame Shame!


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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #26 on: January 29, 2006, 07:47:14 pm »
I think that you have to look at the binary with a hex editor but people have checked and the copyright notice was retained.  So long as the rules were followed and the rightful copyright holders are satisfied then I don't see any reason to complain.

Really?  Well maybe you should visit an optician in that case... A copyright notice that requires a binary hex editor is all very well for the 0.01% of the population who might actually ever use one of the things to look at Outlook Express Code, but what about the other 5.99 * 10 to the 9th of us who just blindly assume that the code was written by microsoft? 

I can see a pretty big problem with that, and if I had written the code I'd make sure Gates was on the wrong end of a high profile law suit until I read my name when the TCP/IP protocol was used.  It is abundantly obvious that Gates has no intention of crediting the copyright holders in any meaningful way...


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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #27 on: January 29, 2006, 08:10:22 pm »
Then feel free to continue your love affair with a gargantuan sloth that has held the computing industry back years...  No skin off my nose...

You clearly have not been reading my postings from the beginning.  I am not pro Microsoft and am currently moving more and more towards Linux because of Microsofts behaviour.  However I would defend Satan himself (if he existed) from false accusations.  Microsoft is guilty of enough that no one needs to falsify things.

I still await links to evidence of their theft of Apple and Unix code.
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #28 on: January 29, 2006, 08:13:02 pm »
Really?  Well maybe you should visit an optician in that case... A copyright notice that requires a binary hex editor is all very well for the 0.01% of the population who might actually ever use one of the things to look at Outlook Express Code, but what about the other 5.99 * 10 to the 9th of us who just blindly assume that the code was written by microsoft? 

I can see a pretty big problem with that, and if I had written the code I'd make sure Gates was on the wrong end of a high profile law suit until I read my name when the TCP/IP protocol was used.  It is abundantly obvious that Gates has no intention of crediting the copyright holders in any meaningful way...

He only has to follow the rules that the copyright holders say and he has.  You can argue that he should do more and I wouldn't say much but he is not in any way required to.  The copyright holders know and do not object that is enough for me.
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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #29 on: January 29, 2006, 08:53:56 pm »
Then feel free to continue your love affair with a gargantuan sloth that has held the computing industry back years...  No skin off my nose...
I still await links to evidence of their theft of Apple and Unix code.

I can't remember where I heard the Apple assertions, it was years ago... If you're that desperate, I suggest you consult Google.  That is what Search Engines are for...

As for the Unix issue, copyright messages that have to be viewed with a binary editor are not the spirit of Open Source, and if you've ever so much a looked at the GNU and GPL, you know that as well as I do...  I view passing OS code off as your own as theft, if you do not, then I'll agree to disagree with you...


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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #30 on: January 29, 2006, 08:56:53 pm »
He only has to follow the rules that the copyright holders say and he has.  You can argue that he should do more and I wouldn't say much but he is not in any way required to.  The copyright holders know and do not object that is enough for me.

Perhaps your definition of theft allows a little more leeway than mine...  The obvious intent of using a legal loophole like this to hide the copyright ownership of the transfer protocol code can only be to pass it off as Microsoft's own work.  There is no other reason... That is theft by any sensible definition of the word...


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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #31 on: January 29, 2006, 09:01:13 pm »
The copyright holders know and do not object that is enough for me.

Given when that code was written, the copyright owners have quite possibly died of old age by now...  That is not the issue...


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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #32 on: January 29, 2006, 09:23:14 pm »
I can't remember where I heard the Apple assertions, it was years ago... If you're that desperate, I suggest you consult Google.  That is what Search Engines are for...


So what your saying is that you can't be bothered to back your arguments up and want me to do the work for you?  Sorry thats not how debate works.

You see I have been following PCs from the beginning and believe that if there had ever been credible accusations such as that I would be aware of them.  So why should I waste my time looking for what I am sure does not exist in an effort to bolster your argument?

As for the Unix issue, copyright messages that have to be viewed with a binary editor are not the spirit of Open Source, and if you've ever so much a looked at the GNU and GPL, you know that as well as I do...  I view passing OS code off as your own as theft, if you do not, then I'll agree to disagree with you...


Now as you see I am willing to use google to back up my argument.  Offical online acknowledgement from Microsoft of using BSD code.

Link to BSD Code use acknowledgement by Microsoft

Quote
Copyright (c) 1988, 1989, 1990 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

This code is derived from software contributed to Berkeley by Adam de Boor.

This software and documentation is based in part on BSD Networking Software licensed from the Regents of the University of California, Berkeley. We acknowledge the role of the Computer Systems Research Group and the Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences Department of the University of California, Berkeley, and the Other Contributors in its development.

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:

1.Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.

2.Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.

3.All advertising materials mentioning features or use of this software must display the following acknowledgement: This product includes software developed by the University of California, Berkeley and its contributors.

4.Neither the name of the University nor the names of its contributors may be used to endorse or promote products derived from this software without specific prior written permission.


They have followed the rules.  Maybe reluctantly but they have done so and by following the rules they gain the rights those who set the rules up grant them.
Do unto others as Frey has done unto you.
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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #33 on: January 29, 2006, 10:41:55 pm »
Microsoft may not even be able to charge royalties for any information provided under the EU ruling.  To charge royalties they would have to prove that the protocol was "innovative".  Innovation is something that historically they talk about but they don't actually do.

Link to full article

Quote
A letter by Professor Neil Barrett, the Commission’s technical adviser in the case, states that there is nothing “innovative” about the 12,000 pages of information drawn up by Microsoft so far. Because the group is only allowed to charge rival companies for licensing information if it is “innovative”, this assessment would allow Brussels to prevent Microsoft from charging any fees at all.


Quote
the information made available by Microsoft so far is “totally useless” and falls far short of the regulator’s expectations.
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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #34 on: January 30, 2006, 05:17:21 am »
I can't remember where I heard the Apple assertions, it was years ago... If you're that desperate, I suggest you consult Google.  That is what Search Engines are for...


So what your saying is that you can't be bothered to back your arguments up and want me to do the work for you?  Sorry thats not how debate works.

You see I have been following PCs from the beginning and believe that if there had ever been credible accusations such as that I would be aware of them.  So why should I waste my time looking for what I am sure does not exist in an effort to bolster your argument?

As for the Unix issue, copyright messages that have to be viewed with a binary editor are not the spirit of Open Source, and if you've ever so much a looked at the GNU and GPL, you know that as well as I do...  I view passing OS code off as your own as theft, if you do not, then I'll agree to disagree with you...


Now as you see I am willing to use google to back up my argument.  Offical online acknowledgement from Microsoft of using BSD code.

Link to BSD Code use acknowledgement by Microsoft

Quote
Copyright (c) 1988, 1989, 1990 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

This code is derived from software contributed to Berkeley by Adam de Boor.

This software and documentation is based in part on BSD Networking Software licensed from the Regents of the University of California, Berkeley. We acknowledge the role of the Computer Systems Research Group and the Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences Department of the University of California, Berkeley, and the Other Contributors in its development.

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:

1.Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.

2.Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.

3.All advertising materials mentioning features or use of this software must display the following acknowledgement: This product includes software developed by the University of California, Berkeley and its contributors.

4.Neither the name of the University nor the names of its contributors may be used to endorse or promote products derived from this software without specific prior written permission.


They have followed the rules.  Maybe reluctantly but they have done so and by following the rules they gain the rights those who set the rules up grant them.


So, if I was to use your intellectual property and pass it off as my own with a copy right notice that nobody will ever see, you wouldn't be worried about it?

I'll keep that in mind if I ever happen to spot any of your work that is marketable in Scotland...

You obviously condone this kind of practice, I consider it legal theft.  I am not arguing about whether Microsoft broke the law, I am fully aware that there are two rules of law in the Western World, one for the ultra rich and one for the rest of us, and I am well aware that the American justice system has even exonnerated paedophiles (Jackson) and murderers (Simpson) on the grounds that they are fabulously wealthy, but that does not alter the fact that what microsoft have done in appropriating billions of dollars on the back of code they did not create by using it in a spirit it was not meant to be used in is sickening, depressing and demeaning...  So, if what they have done is alright by you, the we'll just have to agree to disagree...

On the other point, it's not a question of not being bothered backing up arguements, I am far to busy at the moment to spend hours on google chasing up an allegation I heard on a television program ten years ago.  I was debating with you on breaks from work, and I can't even remember the names of the individuals involved.  When I said Apple Code I wasn't exactly referring to OS 10, I was talking about stuff from the botched together binary disaster areas that people were building in the seventies...
« Last Edit: January 30, 2006, 05:32:21 am by prometheus »


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Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #35 on: January 30, 2006, 05:29:02 am »
So what your saying is that you can't be bothered to back your arguments up and want me to do the work for you?  Sorry thats not how debate works.

You see I have been following PCs from the beginning and believe that if there had ever been credible accusations such as that I would be aware of them.  So why should I waste my time looking for what I am sure does not exist in an effort to bolster your argument?

In the interests of keeping the peace, I withdraw my allegations about Apple.  I don't have time to look into this at the moment, I'm working on several prjects that demand a lot of my attention...   Probably what has happened is that I have picked up on something Gates has done that again was legal under US law, but which Apple strenuously objected too...


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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #36 on: January 30, 2006, 09:44:26 am »
So, if I was to use your intellectual property and pass it off as my own with a copy right notice that nobody will ever see, you wouldn't be worried about it?

I'll keep that in mind if I ever happen to spot any of your work that is marketable in Scotland...

If I publish it under a license that allows you to do that and you obey the licence?  Sure go ahead because the license already gives you my permission and you don't need anything else.

You obviously condone this kind of practice, I consider it legal theft.  I am not arguing about whether Microsoft broke the law, I am fully aware that there are two rules of law in the Western World, one for the ultra rich and one for the rest of us, and I am well aware that the American justice system has even exonnerated paedophiles (Jackson) and murderers (Simpson) on the grounds that they are fabulously wealthy, but that does not alter the fact that what microsoft have done in appropriating billions of dollars on the back of code they did not create by using it in a spirit it was not meant to be used in is sickening, depressing and demeaning...  So, if what they have done is alright by you, the we'll just have to agree to disagree...

How is it theft when the owners say here it is, use it under these rules and Microsoft adheres to the rules? 

How you can call this an example of there being a law for the rich and a law for the poor when Linux also uses BSD code under the same rules I don't know.  The same TCP/IP code was used by both.

Both used the code, both followed the rules, neither broke the law or used their vast wealth and power to steal the work of others (in this instance).

On the other point, it's not a question of not being bothered backing up arguements, I am far to busy at the moment to spend hours on google chasing up an allegation I heard on a television program ten years ago.  I was debating with you on breaks from work, and I can't even remember the names of the individuals involved.  When I said Apple Code I wasn't exactly referring to OS 10, I was talking about stuff from the botched together binary disaster areas that people were building in the seventies...

Whatever you have been smoking is bad stuff get rid of it.  Claiming that Windows is based on code stolen during the 1970s?  Your reality cheque has just bounced.

At most back then there was the Xerox Palo Alto research center windowing system, a prototype never marketed.  The PC didn't exist and the Microcomputer barely did.  Apple was king of the roost and licensed Applesoft Basic from Microsoft in 1978 (a bad deal for Microsoft actually).  Microsoft didn't even have an OS until 1980 when they produced Xenix under license from AT&T.  MS-DOS came out a year later in 1981.

There was indeed once a lawsuit between Apple and Microsoft.  It was over the appearance of Windows.  They settled and among other things Microsoft had to change the appearance of their Recycle Bin so it didn't resemble the Mac garbage can.  That involved no source code.  No theft of the actual image only the allegation that Windows looked too much like the Mac OS.
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Offline Mr_Tricorder

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #37 on: January 30, 2006, 12:40:29 pm »
I've been away from the dynaverse forums for a few days and look what happens.  I wish I got into this one earlier.

I agree completely with everything IKV Nemesis has said.  Prometheus, give him a break, I agree with what you're saying is the spirit of open source, and I'm sure Nemesis does too.  He's not condoning the actions of Microsoft, he's simply pointing out that they are complying with the bare minimum requirements of the BSD license and, however unfair it may seem, they are not breaking the law in this manner.

Whenever you acquire a piece of software that someone else wrote, it comes with a license.  That license states what you can and cannot legally do with the software, regardless if it's fair or not.  If you don't like the license, don't use the software.  If you feel you're getting ripped off by the way someone else is using your software even though it complies with the license you attached to it, it's your own damn fault.

Is Microsoft complying with the BSD license?  Yes.
Good for them.  That's one less legal battlefront they have to worry about.

Is Microsoft going against the spirit of Open Source by taking what they want, using it in closed source, proprietary software and obscuring the proper credits from all but those who know exactly where and how to find it?  Yes.
Shame on them.  They get "bad rep" points and people may be less willing to do business with them.

What Microsoft is doing here is unethical, but not illegal.
(Keep in mind that I'm only talking about this one issue and not about the entire legal history of Microsoft)

Just so you know where I stand, I am also a Linux user (currently running SUSE 10.0) and have no love for Microsoft.  I have my system set up for dual-boot because I need to use Photoshop (I'm not nearly as good in GIMP as I am in Photoshop yet), 3ds max, and games, but if I could do all of these things in Linux, I would gladly kiss Windows goodbye.

Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #38 on: January 30, 2006, 05:49:41 pm »
I'm not accusing them of breaking the law...  The problem for me is that certain people seem to lack the penetration to see the problem...  This is what allows the problem to persist...  All it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing...

There are many ways to steal while staying on the right side of the law... 


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Offline Mr_Tricorder

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #39 on: January 30, 2006, 06:47:10 pm »
I understand what you're saying, but that's an entirely different matter altogether.  You can't fight Microsoft on a moral basis because too many people sell their morals everyday.  I agree that many of Microsoft's actions are evil, but the only ones we have the ability to combat are the illegal ones.  You will be very hard-pressed to find a company that hasn't committed something that could easily be labeled an evil act, whether or not it was legal.

You can say "Microsoft is evil" and give every reason for it all day long, but it won't do anything.  Microsoft is so big and powerful now that the only way to get it's attention is through legal means.  I agree with you about Microsoft's complete lack of ethics, but unless their doing something against the law, the only way to do anything is to change the law, and not only is that difficult, it could have ramifications beyond what you indended to accomplish, and could possibly backfire.  The best solution is to use the law as it presently is since Microsoft has breached it on countless occasions and will no doubt continue to do so until the US and the EU finally decide that they've had enough.

Offline prometheus

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #40 on: January 30, 2006, 06:53:43 pm »
I understand what you're saying, but that's an entirely different matter altogether.  You can't fight Microsoft on a moral basis because too many people sell their morals everyday.  I agree that many of Microsoft's actions are evil, but the only ones we have the ability to combat are the illegal ones.  You will be very hard-pressed to find a company that hasn't committed something that could easily be labeled an evil act, whether or not it was legal.

You can say "Microsoft is evil" and give every reason for it all day long, but it won't do anything.  Microsoft is so big and powerful now that the only way to get it's attention is through legal means.  I agree with you about Microsoft's complete lack of ethics, but unless their doing something against the law, the only way to do anything is to change the law, and not only is that difficult, it could have ramifications beyond what you indended to accomplish, and could possibly backfire.  The best solution is to use the law as it presently is since Microsoft has breached it on countless occasions and will no doubt continue to do so until the US and the EU finally decide that they've had enough.

There is another way...  If serious computer users and businesses refused to buy into their draconian lisencing activites...  I'm with you, the only reason I'm not using Linux is because all the best sound recording stuff is written for Windows or MACS...  Also, trying to get Linux to speak to a lot of non standard hardware can be a nightmare...  The time will come, and from what I've seen of recent Linux releases it could be coming very soon, where Linux will be as simple to install and easy to use as windows...  if computer retail outlets started to ship Linux instead of Windows, and Businesses started to switch to Linux (as many in Europe are doing) Microsoft would be forced to toe the line...

but it's never going to happen if people take the attitude that provided Western Law isn't violated, no harm, no foul...


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Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #41 on: January 30, 2006, 07:49:52 pm »
Once upon a time each year was pronounced by the media to be the year of the network.  It never was.  One day however people forgot the whole concept because the network had crept up on us a little at a time, no sudden predicted surge.  One day the network was ubiquitous.  No year just day by day gaining ground.

Linux has had the year of Linux pronounced over and over.  It hasn't happened and I don't think it will.  I think it is going to just continue to creep up a little more common each day until it just is everywhere, just like the network. 

The only way it could be stopped is through legal manipulation (software patents).  It has been somewhat slowed by the FUD spread by The SCO Group with their lawsuits (partially funded by MS or course) and campaigns like Microsofts "get the facts" campaign but it keeps coming. 

It is better to debunk the FUD and present unequivocal truths backed with facts than to rant against Microsoft.  Let Microsoft be the one convicted of false advertising.  Let Microsoft be convicted of telling lies about competitors.  Better to be the side with demonstrated integrity and let Microsoft have the low ground.  Step by step Microsoft is digging its own grave.
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Offline Just plain old Punisher

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #42 on: January 30, 2006, 08:13:15 pm »

"Sex is a lot like pizza.  If you're not careful you can blister your tongue". -Dracho

Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #43 on: January 30, 2006, 08:20:19 pm »
He knows too much.  Must put a contract on Punisher.  Hey Pun what is your price to kill yourself?
Do unto others as Frey has done unto you.
Seti Team    Free Software
I believe truth and principle do matter. If you have to sacrifice them to get the results you want, then the results aren't worth it.
 FoaS_XC : "Take great pains to distinguish a criticism vs. an attack. A person reading a post should never be able to confuse the two."

Offline Just plain old Punisher

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #44 on: January 30, 2006, 08:39:09 pm »
10 grand.

That's why I keep the clones around.

"Sex is a lot like pizza.  If you're not careful you can blister your tongue". -Dracho

Offline Mr_Tricorder

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #45 on: January 30, 2006, 09:37:13 pm »

This means I'll have to step up my timetable for getting Texas to secede from the M$ Empire.  Don't worry, it can be done.  It's in our state constitution  ;D

edit:
PHASE 1:  Get Texans to use Linux
This ought to do the trick.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2006, 10:45:26 pm by Mr_Tricorder »

Offline Mr_Tricorder

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #46 on: January 30, 2006, 11:35:17 pm »
Here's something that I forgot was on my computer until recently that I think goes well with this thread.

Offline MrCue

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #47 on: January 31, 2006, 12:27:00 am »




Offline Bonk

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #48 on: January 31, 2006, 10:22:07 am »
Hahahahaha! MS sticks it to Norton:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/01/30/vista_security_allchin/

I love it. Beautiful move.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/10/10/eu_probes_ms_security_plans/

I'd bet a million dollars (if I had it) that if Microsoft was based in the EU this crap would not be happening at all. I see it as creative international business tax.

Offline Nemesis

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Re: Microsoft offering Windows source code
« Reply #49 on: January 31, 2006, 04:09:45 pm »
Microsoft is planning a new version of Windows to take the best features of its best prior versions

Link
Do unto others as Frey has done unto you.
Seti Team    Free Software
I believe truth and principle do matter. If you have to sacrifice them to get the results you want, then the results aren't worth it.
 FoaS_XC : "Take great pains to distinguish a criticism vs. an attack. A person reading a post should never be able to confuse the two."