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Microsoft Claims Patent On Elements of Embedded Linux? 191

Posted by Zonk
from the strange-bedfellows dept.
Preedit writes "An InformationWeek story points out a recent deal between Microsoft and Japanese printer maker Kyocera Mita. Under the agreement, Kyocera obtained from Microsoft a license to patents used in 'certain Linux-based embedded technologies.' The question the author asks is why Kyocera needs a patent license from Microsoft to develop its embedded Linux products."
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Microsoft Claims Patent On Elements of Embedded Linux?

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  • Simple (Score:5, Funny)

    by eclectro (227083) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:28PM (#21384635)
    Agree to the deal or get a chair in your face.
    • Re:Simple (Score:5, Funny)

      by Tackhead (54550) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:37PM (#21384731)
      > Agree to the deal or get a chair in your face.

      Close, but those aren't the right laws. Here are laws.

      MONKEYDOME!

      0) Who run Microtown? STEVIE BALLMER RUN MICROTOWN!
      1) Two competitors enter, ONE MONOPOLIST LEAVES!
      2) Agree to the deal, or YOUR IP WE'LL STEAL!
      3) Laissez-faire? FACE THE CHAIR!

    • Re:Simple (Score:5, Funny)

      by ozmanjusri (601766) <aussie_bob@@@hotmail...com> on Friday November 16, 2007 @09:00PM (#21385983) Journal
      ...or get a chair in your face.

      Worse than that.

      "We believe that intellectual property licensing is an empowering way to bring innovation to the IT ecosystem," said David Kaefer, general manager of Intellectual Property and Licensing at Microsoft.
      "Empowering way to bring innovation to the IT ecosystem"??? I've been read Vogon poetry that was less nauseating than that line.
  • Useless Article... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by gillbates (106458) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:29PM (#21384639) Homepage Journal

    I used to be an embedded Linux developer.

    However, I could more thoughtfully comment on this if the article revealed just what patents Microsoft believes Kyocera to be violating. It could have nothing to do with Linux; moreover, it could very well be a patent on some method of printing which is specific to the Kyocera hardware and just happens to be implemented as a Linux driver.

    Looks more like FUD against Linux than anything else.

    • by flymolo (28723)
      We know Microsoft has some patents involving anti-aliasing and other font rendering stuff. I would be more interested if they convinced an embedded developer, who wasn't using a GUI or printing or SMB.
      • We know Microsoft has some patents involving anti-aliasing and other font rendering stuff.

        We also know that UCLA has recently sued over the non-licensed usage of it's patents by a number of software technology firms, including Microsoft.

        All your stolen Microsoft patents are belong to Cali!
        • by tjstork (137384)
          We also know that UCLA has recently sued over the non-licensed usage of it's patents by a number of software technology firms, including Microsoft.

          I think we need to stop providing federal money to universities that act like patent trolls.
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by ozmanjusri (601766)
        Kyocera also make digital cameras and other devices that use removable media.

        Microsoft has been granted patents to FAT32 and VFAT, so there's a good chance Kyocera would want rights to use that.

      • by arivanov (12034)
        who wasn't using a GUI or printing or SMB.

        WTF do you think Kyocera makes? I suspect it used WinCE or something else which was MSFT based for its printers before so it had the antialising patents bundled. Now it had to buy them separately.

    • by Mrs. Grundy (680212) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:36PM (#21384719) Homepage
      Absolutely,

      From the article:

      Is it adding proprietary Microsoft technology on top of embedded Linux?
      Could be...

      Hard to know what that means--it's deliberately vague.

      Now that's some reporting. There is really nothing to see here.
      • by nametaken (610866) on Saturday November 17, 2007 @02:50AM (#21387849)

        And there probably never will be. If you've ever contacted MS IP Licensing you know that you can't even discuss licensing their technologies until after you're under NDA.
    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by mordors9 (665662)
      Gil, Babe... are you a /. poster or not. Just make up any facts that you need to post an opinion ;-)
    • by davidsyes (765062) on Friday November 16, 2007 @07:26PM (#21385189) Homepage Journal
      (I keisseikki will mod me troll or flamebait, but...)

      Based on the recent news of a major Korean company being under investigation for corruption/et cetera (this isn't localized to Korea, just mentioning it in proximity to this article), I will go on a limb and say microsoft is just wheeling and dealing and paying some exec to "go along with the script":

      "We'll claim you're violating one or more of our patents; doesn't matter which ones, if they're pending or not; doesn't matter if later the USPTO tells us we're full of it; doesn't matter if prior art exists. WE rule this world, and if you play by our terms, Sonsaengnim, you'll make a buttload of money."

      That's the business world for you.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        I agree, since everyone knows that Japan and Korea are really the exact same country, and everything that applies in Korea is exactly the same as in Japan. In fact, all of Asia is really just like one big homogeneous country. Kind of like corruption in Mexico means America is corrupt too.

        On second though, it does sound more like a troll to me.
  • by compumike (454538) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:30PM (#21384653) Homepage
    We know that Microsoft claims to hold patents that Linux users are infringing... but they won't tell us which ones. What's new?

    So there are two possibilities: either they've got a specific one or two that they're really able to show Kyocera that are troublesome, or they've just got this massive library of "probable" ones that Kyocera decided to give in to. What would be more interesting to know is who approached who about the deal. What does it permit? What did that cost?

    Anyway, this is at the stage where it isn't using patent law, but is just using corporate risk expectations. Very dangerous... which is why MSFT doesn't want to show their hand.

    Software patent lifetimes should probably get quite a bit shorter, too...

    --
    Educational microcontroller kits for the digital generation. [nerdkits.com]
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by cptdondo (59460)
      Or they just cross-licensed some proprietary stuff and threw in the 'linux' word for fun. Kyocera has been working with MS since at least the TRS Model 100 days - they built the hardware, MS supplied the software and that was - what - 25 years ago?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by krycheq (836359)
      Yes, but when does a "patent" become a hindrance to society by stifling innovation and competition? All that Microsoft has done is made a non-specific claim about owning patents and companies that can't pay the toll are afraid to move forward because they might end up sued into non-existence.

      That's called a back-door monopoly... and it hurts us, the marketplace, and the implementation of the benefits of technology we should all enjoy.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by JohnBailey (1092697)

        Yes, but when does a "patent" become a hindrance to society by stifling innovation and competition? All that Microsoft has done is made a non-specific claim about owning patents and companies that can't pay the toll are afraid to move forward because they might end up sued into non-existence.

        That's called a back-door monopoly... and it hurts us, the marketplace, and the implementation of the benefits of technology we should all enjoy.

        It doesn't really say anything. Its like a major news story about an explosion in an animal shelter with the tag line "authorities do not suspect terrorist involvement" Spices up the story a little, but adds no actual information.

        There are three distinct and unrelated aspects to the story.

        1) Microsoft and Kyocera signed a cross licence agreement.

        Common business practice. Nothing suspicious. The only relevant bit.

        2) Kyocera uses Linux in some of it's products.

        Again nothing unusual, and nothing suspicious. M

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by alx5000 (896642)
      Or maybe the agreement invoves certain benefits for the Korean firm from MS (money, etc), in exchange for providing the world with this PR stunt, that would complete their threat on linux alleged infringement on MS's IP...
    • Microsoft
      Patent Application N 32121323423412341234

      A Method for providing some useful softwares routines and a commom layer of functionality on a environment where other programs can run atop.
      (...)
      We call this an Operating System, blah blah blah....
    • software patents (Score:3, Interesting)

      by falconwolf (725481)

      Software patent lifetimes should probably get quite a bit shorter, too...

      Software patents shouldn't exist at all, neither should patents for business methods. Only non obvious hardware implementations and unique solutions not already published should be patented.

      Falcon
  • It's a trap! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by cromar (1103585) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:31PM (#21384661)
    But seriously, it seems that Microsoft is going to keep after Linux until it has it surrounded on all sides. Then I suppose they'll get to a lawsuit. And, while Linux will be found to be free of MS patents, it will end up costing Microsoft's enemies so much to defend Linux that they will be forced into oblivion...
    • But seriously, it seems that Microsoft is going to keep after Linux until it has it surrounded on all sides. Then I suppose they'll get to a lawsuit. And, while Linux will be found to be free of MS patents, it will end up costing Microsoft's enemies so much to defend Linux that they will be forced into oblivion...
      Just like SCO/Microsoft did to IBM and Novell? Yes...
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by memojuez (910304)
        Novell and IBM had deeper pockets than SCO. Microsoft infused enough cash to keep SCO going for awhile.
      • It encouraged the Novell/Microsoft patent cross-licensing. As good as Novell has been about the SCO insanity, it wasted resources they might have spent to for legal expenses of patent violations by Microsoft, and doubtless left them quite tired of wasting time and money in court.
  • Japanese culture? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:31PM (#21384665)
    My uncle works in IT for a Japanese company of some size. He often speaks of the Japanese management as if this were still the eighties and sometimes its almost racist,so I apologize for him if this is insulting to anyone so take this with a heaping dose of salt.

    He thinks that it goes against the Japanese culture to use a technology without paying for it, that it shows disrespect to not pay for software licenses. He is not even allowed to consider using Linux or any other OSS for that matter.
    • In fact, most distros prefer it.
    • Re:Japanese culture? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by DragonWriter (970822) on Friday November 16, 2007 @07:26PM (#21385193)

      He thinks that it goes against the Japanese culture to use a technology without paying for it, that it shows disrespect to not pay for software licenses. He is not even allowed to consider using Linux or any other OSS for that matter.


      Many companies I've known won't use software if they aren't paying someone for support and a license (and, often, particular support guarantees and/or performance warranties.) I don't know anything about Japanese culture, but in business the need to have some else that's feet can be held to the fire if something goes wrong is a big deal.

      Of course, you can get paid support (and sometimes licensing, when the software is under a dual OSS/commercial licensing model) for most OSS you might want to adopt in a business environment, so neither cultural nor business-based reluctance to use software without paying for it should be a major barrier to OSS adoption.
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Ox0065 (1085977)
        I've personally worked in two Japanese companies, in Japan. One massive, monolithic and very conservative, the other a young upstart with incompetent management. In both cases, accountability, or the avoidance thereof was all.

        In the big one, any proposal/request had to be stamped by a long LONG line of people before it could be approved, so that if anything went wrong the blame was distributed. If there was no form in existence to suitably acquire said distributed blame, it was 'difficult'
        (= impossible / fo
    • Re:Japanese culture? (Score:5, Informative)

      by tbird20d (600059) on Friday November 16, 2007 @07:43PM (#21385351)
      I work for Sony, putting Linux into many different Sony products. I also lead the CE Linux Forum, which has a number of large of members from Japan. I can assure you that Linux is used in Japan in droves, and that the range of practices for obtaining Linux, from paying a vendor to downloading directly from kernel.org, is as broad there as anywhere else in the world.
      • Question:

        Sony uses the Tron OS in many of their consumer electronics (so I've been told). Does Sony plan on replacing Tron with Linux? Is it because they don't want to pay the royalty fee for using Tron, or is it considered outdated and/or difficult to develop for?
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Tablizer (95088)
      He thinks that it goes against the Japanese culture to use a technology without paying for it, that it shows disrespect to not pay for software licenses. He is not even allowed to consider using Linux or any other OSS for that matter.

      What if they donate some money to antarctic penguin preservation?
               
    • by dunng808 (448849)

      ... so take this with a heaping dose of salt. He thinks that it goes against the Japanese culture to use a technology without paying for it, that it shows disrespect to not pay for software licenses. He is not even allowed to consider using Linux or any other OSS for that matter.

      A mountain of salt; so why mod it 5 Informative? I agree that Japanese culture results in less petty crime. Japanese cities are as safe as any to walk around in even at night. To the extent that using COMMERCIAL software without

    • by MobyDisk (75490)
      I call FUD.

      This is rumor spread by an AC who wants to imply that Linux isn't good enough. And telling us to "take this with a heaping dose of salt" doesn't make it worthy of being modded-up. Go tell Steve Ballmer that if he wants to pay you to post here, at least register for an account and delete it the next day. This subtle anti-Linux, anti-Mac, anonymous posters have become more common over the last two weeks.
    • by macshit (157376)
      I work for a major japanese electronics company (in software development); they've slowly been getting more and more enthusiastic about linux etc, but it's a very slow process. The main driving factor I see behind reluctance to use linux and other free software is not "respect", but rather fear and risk-aversion -- they're used to the old way, and it kinda works most of the time, so they don't want to change. I think this is true in big companies anywhere in the world, but it's especially true in Japan wh
  • by Arabani (1127547) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:32PM (#21384671)
    Kyocera Mita appears to be a "small" company - revenues for the parent corporation (Mita is their printer division, it appears) were a little shy of $3 billion in 2006, while Epson had revenues of $12.7 billion last year. Granted, I'm not sure how valid this comparison is, but if this disparity is typical, it could very well be that Kyocera decided it would be safer to play Microsoft's game than to potentially face a court battle they would have trouble fighting.
    • by sumdumass (711423)
      Kyocera generally make large office printers and copy machines. they generally have an expensive built in Ethernet print board that runs some sort of base OS separate or independent from the machine's OS.

      It is highly likely that they run the printer with linux and the print server with some software capable of connecting with MS servers and such (maybe linux too). This might be much like the original Novell deal where the patent deal was supposed to cover new technology made to interact with MS products. It
    • by smoker2 (750216)
      I'm not sure what you mean by "revenues", but their consolidated net sales as of March 31st 2007 were $11,557,268,881 which is just a tad more than $3 billion.
      Corporate info here [kyocera.com].
  • They Don't. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheRaven64 (641858) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:33PM (#21384675) Journal
    The GPL states that they may only distribute the code if they accompany it with the rights for any derivatives to use any patents it infringes. If they discover that they infringe some patents in Linux then they must stop distributing Linux until they have obtained a license to the patents that is compatible with the GPL (which means that anyone who is in the transitive closure of recipients of the code from them also gains the license). In summary, if they have obtained a license from Microsoft then either they are in violation of the GPL or no one else needs to obtain such a license and Microsoft's FUD evaporates in a puff of logic.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      That puff was logic?
      Damnit! I thought it was Opium. :-(
    • by SharpFang (651121)
      ...or they obtained all the patent rights, not just the license itself. This way they can relicense the patent as they see fit - like, release it on GPL.

      Unlikely but not impossible.
    • You are assuming that these licensed patents are to be used in the linux kernel itself instead of "certain Linux-based embedded devices." It's entirely sane that a linux-based embedded device might include software that isn't in the linux kernel. In fact it's guaranteed that there will be software that isn't in the linux kernel involved.

      But you sure sounded smart there for a minute.
    • by mritunjai (518932)

      The GPL states that they may only distribute the code if they accompany it with the rights for any derivatives to use any patents it infringes.
      No. Only GPL v3 has that clause. GPL v2 (which is what the kernel is under) does not have such a clause and as such can be threatened by patent claims and DRM restrictions.
  • Not just fud... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by tqft (619476) <ianburrows_auNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:39PM (#21384747) Homepage Journal
    I think it is more than fud...

    By binding potential developers (and we will may never see what is in the agreement in total) to MS it may make it a lot harder for them to deliver products that work with linux.

    Now everytime they go to release a driver legal are going to have to have a good hard look at driver and the MS agreement.

    How long before it gets to be too much hard work and they not bother?

    "developers, developers, developers" is still true. Without delivery of new products any OS will die. Kyocera Mita make stuff people want to use in business settings - printer/fax machines and stuff like that.
  • by petes_PoV (912422) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:47PM (#21384831)
    It looks like Kyocera don't recognise a bluff when they see one.

    Maye we should all get in touch with them and say that we might own patents that they may be infringing. Just to be sure, they need to sign this licensing agreement and pay $xxxx for an assurance that we won't sue them in the future.

    This seems to be just what MS have done, but being bigger and scarier than we are, they can get a way with it.

    • by davidsyes (765062)
      This is just downright INFURIATING that Kyocera is so blind and pliant to mshaft.

      Sometimes, retribution just takes too damn long. Life would be so nice if corruption and racketeering were smacked hard and fast more often than few an far in between /far/few in between.

      If I were Korean, I'd start (like in the movies) wielding some baseball bats in the mshaft boardroom -- AND waking up the Korean staff that they are being screwed by ms tactics. Sometimes, you just sniff the money and pass, not take. Dammit! Ma
    • Maybe NS offered Kyocera big bucks to sign onto the patent agreement like they did with Novell.
    • by thethibs (882667)

      Right. Kyocera and Novell, both of whom have large patent staffs of their own, lack the resources or the will to check on Microsoft's claims. We on Slashdot, however, have the wisdom to see through this ploy.

      (chuckle)

      • by sumdumass (711423)
        It is most likely that the patent stuff like Novel's deal was for something they were implementing in order to connect with MS servers better. It might not be anything in linux or even related to it outside them using it as a base OS.
        • But then Jeremy Allison, the Novell employee who was also one of the primary Samba developers, threw a hissy fit calling the deal illegal and resigned. And Jeremy is a sharp person: I take his opinion seriously.

          The end result is that Novell thought they were getting a helpful license deal, and instead shot their own MS services development through the head. I wish I could find Jeremy to buy him the ice cream sundae of his choice. But he's over at Google now: I wonder what they're up to in the filesharing fi
          • by sumdumass (711423)
            It looks like Jeremy is still with Samba so i'm not sure what your attempting to get at with the Google file sharing bit. Novell doesn't own samba.

            Of course Jeremy Allison is "anti-microsoft" and pro FSF in general. So he either could have been in on the scam the FSF did to gain support for the GPLv3 seeing how he moved Samba to it as soon as possible and is an active A commity member who was seeing little support and popular rejection up until that point of the GPLv2 drafts made available to the public. Or
    • Maybe it's not a bluff but still not about patents. They need information from Microsoft to produce Microsoft OS printer drivers and if a hint that this flow of information is going to get cut off if they don't sign the agreement may be enough. It would of course require some underhanded business practices at Microsoft - perhaps requiring the sort of people that would fabricate video evidence in an anti-monopoly trial. It could be something other than such gangster tactics but perhaps it would be worth i
  • by NullProg (70833) on Friday November 16, 2007 @06:48PM (#21384835) Homepage Journal
    What does Kyocera get? The right to use patented Microsoft technology in its printers, copiers and "certain Linux-based embedded devices."

    Maybe Kyocera just licensed Fonts/ODBC or some other mundane MS technology to use in their products. Food for thought.

    Enjoy,
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by James Youngman (3732)
      I think you have hit the nail on the head there. I'd bet that the technology under consideration is Microsoft's fonts (or perhaps the mechanism for using the associated rendering hints).
      • Well, as for rendering hints, if that were the case then either Microsoft told some pretty big lies or we'd be talking about a patent deal with Apple or Adobe instead (patent holders on hinting in TrueType and Type 1/PostScript respectively I believe). As for using Microsoft's actual fonts, that would be a copyright license, not patent (maybe design patent? I doubt it though). Could be maybe a license of ClearType [wikipedia.org] maybe if it's font-related, but that applies more to rendering text on an LCD display than
  • What does Kyocera get? The right to use patented Microsoft technology in its printers, copiers and "certain Linux-based embedded devices."

    This seems to say that Kyocera will get it's ass in a sling putting Microsoft crap into an embedded linux cellphone or something. This is hardly what the article title seems to be suggesting. In fact, tfa seems to suggest the M$ is allowing certain linux embedded devices to employ it's IP. I hate M$ just as much as the next linux geek, but I call bullshit whichever sid
  • getting their printer drivers "certified" on Vista...
  • I find this to be rather ridiculous! Did they buy a license to use "all" microsoft patents? Without since explicitly defined range of identified patents, then they didn't explicitly buy anything at all. Microsoft must have identified which patents, in particular, they feel Linux is violating or else a Japanese company wouldn't have been persuaded to buy it. It goes against everything I know of Japanese personality to buy anything "nebulous." If they bought "protection" from microsoft, I'd be inclined t
    • by calebt3 (1098475)

      Microsoft must have identified which patents, in particular, they feel Linux is violating or else a Japanese company wouldn't have been persuaded to buy it
      Force Japanese company to sign a non-disclosure agreement? ;-)
  • Seems to me, Kyocera needs to release the added "MS IP" code they are using as required by the GPL ASAP!
    If the Linux source code Kyocera is using is really containing "IP" from Microsoft, we should be able to see what the heck Kyocera licensed.
    • by sumdumass (711423)
      What are you going to do if they just release th source and don't point to the offending IP? Nothing in either GPL's state that they need to point out where the code it.

      It is more likely that is anything is covered by MS patents, it would be something that is also covered by the aggregation sections of the GPLs and not be inside any actual GPLed program.
  • I'm guessing this wasn't the core of what Kyocera needed. It's just as likely MSFT threw it in there as a FUD grenade target of poopertunity. An IP stink bomb.

    This whole thing is just so...seedy. This is not how a supposedly world class company acts. It would be far more effective if they fielded high quality products at reasonable prices. Or is that a quaint concept nowadays?

    Of course, with telcos spying on Americans, banks and credit card companies nickel and diming customers to death at will and

  • I'd give my eye teeth to know whether the same kind of effort Microsoft put forth unsuccessfully in Nigeria worked in the more understated environment of the Japanese corporate world. I doubt anything will ever be proven, but watch out for a quid pro quo down the road somewhere.
  • by westlake (615356) on Friday November 16, 2007 @07:17PM (#21385123)
    Under the deal, Microsoft gets to add patented Kyocera Mita technology to its Windows and Office products. What does Kyocera get? The right to use patented Microsoft technology in its printers, copiers and "certain Linux-based embedded devices."

    Kyocera [kyocera.com] makes everything from ball-point pens to machine tools.

    Kyocera is interested in things like data security in printing. Kyocera Mita America's Data Security Kit Offers Critical Data Protection of Stored Data on Color Multifunctional Products [kyoceramita.com] [November 14, 2007]

    Microsoft is also interested in things like data security in printing.

    Tell me why the Geek trots out his paranoia every time two companies that compliment each other sign a cross-licensing agreement.

  • by mr_mischief (456295) on Friday November 16, 2007 @07:47PM (#21385377) Journal
    it only says they're gaining the right to use Microsoft IP in embedded Linux devices. It doesn't say they were using the property already or that there was any infringement. Kyocera could make this deal and start using Microsoft IP that they were not using beforehand and Microsoft could word it exactly the same way. Kyocera could gain the permission to use Microsoft tech combined with Linux and still not plan on using it, and Microsoft could still word it the same way.
  • by nurb432 (527695) on Friday November 16, 2007 @08:16PM (#21385625) Homepage Journal
    If they can tie up enough hardware and software distributors and make it difficult to release anything commercially for linux, it will help kill it off or at least reduce it back down to a mere hobby and no longer a threat.

    Once the next generation of hardware comes out, and you cant get a driver as its so tied up in the legal world that it can never escape, what will you have left to run? Why, officially endorsed Microsoft software and hardware of course.

    It wont happen today, or tomorrow, but they have the time and money to think *really* long term ( like in decades ) on this
  • Probably XPS (Score:4, Informative)

    by AirLace (86148) on Friday November 16, 2007 @09:05PM (#21386025)
    This is likely to be about XPS, the Microsoft XML Paper Specification, Microsoft's PS/PDF successor. I'd guess that Kyocera has written an XPS implementation for Linux, and wants to deploy it to support uses printing directly from XPS-enabled software. An open source XPS implementation was written within a few weeks of the release of the XPS spec -- maybe they're even just shipping that: http://www.ndesk.org/Xps [ndesk.org]

    The spec is freely available, but the introductory paragraphs in the spec suggest that implementing it without licenses is not permitted.
  • Nothing new... (Score:2, Informative)

    by DeviceGuru (1136715)
    Microsoft and LG Electronics, best known for its DVD players, home theater systems, and cellphones, announced on June 7 [linuxdevices.com] that they had entered into a patent cross-license agreement to enable LG to use Microsoft patented technology in its product lines, including in its Linux-based embedded devices.
  • You know, it certainly wouldn't make a news story, but the first rational response to this news isn't that microsoft is trying to assert ownership over linux (which is the impression i got from tfa), but rather that they licensed some form of interoperability to kyocera. For instance, ntfs support? any of the office formats? decent exchange inter-opability? some aspect of smb et al thats currently not in samba (hrm active directory in a stable branch of samba?), so on and so forth.

    Then again however, tha
  • Hmmm... A story involving Microsoft. To this, I must add the obligatory "flying chair" comment:

    Google is a better company than Microsoft.

    This story also mentions Linux. Did I mention that the better company uses Linux extensively? Hmmm... maybe that has something to do with Google being better.

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