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Posts tagged as “Patents”

Open Invention Network Helps Rid FOSS of Patent Lawsuits

Software patent issues aren’t in the news as much now as they were only a few years back, partly due to the Supreme Court’s 2014 Alice v. CLS decision. Another reason is the patent pool the Open Invention Network has amassed to discourage patent trolls.

The FOSS Force Video Interview

The Open Invention Network — OIN, as its friends call it — “is a defensive patent pool and community of patent non-aggression which enables freedom of action in Linux.” That’s what it says (among other things) on the front page of the organization’s website. Basically, if you join OIN (which costs $0) you agree not to sue other members over Linux and Android-related patents, and in return they promise not to sue you. Google, IBM, and NEC are the top three members shown on OIN’s “community” page, which lists over 2,000 members/licensees ranging from Ford to one-person Android app developers.

Robin "Roblimo" MillerRobin "Roblimo" Miller

Robin “Roblimo” Miller is a freelance writer and former editor-in-chief at Open Source Technology Group, the company that owned SourceForge, freshmeat, Linux.com, NewsForge, ThinkGeek and Slashdot, and until recently served as a video editor at Slashdot. Now he’s mostly retired, but still works part-time as an editorial consultant for Grid Dynamics, and (obviously) writes for FOSS Force.

India Nixes Software Patents, Linux Foundation Embraces Diversity & More…

FOSS Week in Review

India again shows sanity by doing away with “software only” patents, and the Linux Foundation continues to move towards diversity.

The old and the new both made big news on the FOSS front this week. Representing the old was what appears to be the ending of the SCO vs IBM case after something like 13 years, which means that Caldera/SCO now gets to go to its final resting place. For the new was the release of the Raspberry Pi 3, which comes wielding a 64-bit ARM processor with built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

But that wasn’t the only news of interest to the FOSS world this week…

Barely a month after putting an end to a Facebook supported scheme, “Free Basics,” in favor of supporting Net Neutrality, India has declared software to be not patentable. According to the Software Freedom Law Centre in India, the patent office will now use a three part test to determine patentability:

Christine HallChristine Hall

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001, she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and started covering Linux and FOSS in 2002 after making the switch to GNU/Linux. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux

Google & Microsoft Shake Hands in Patent Dispute

handshake
Photo by Tobias Wolter
Microsoft is full of surprises these days.

“Microsoft and Google are pleased to announce an agreement on patent issues,” Redmond has said in a joint statement with Google. “As part of the agreement, the companies will dismiss all pending patent infringement litigation between them, including cases related to Motorola Mobility.”

Christine HallChristine Hall

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001, she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and started covering Linux and FOSS in 2002 after making the switch to GNU/Linux. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux

Microsoft’s Linux OS & Open Source Cred

Microsoft has gone and built a Linux distro. Well, maybe it’s not a distro but some sort of Azure switch to use in the cloud. But anyway, Microsoft want’s you — meaning you open sourcers who never do anything but throw brickbats at the fine folks in Redmond — to know that it’s built on Linux. So there. Microsoft does love Linux, as if there was ever any doubt.

Microsoft logoGreat. Just great.

I’m sure they would’ve preferred to build their switch-masquerading-as-an-operating-system on Windows, but they couldn’t figure out how to pull all of the crap they didn’t need out of the Windows bloat. Of course, they could’ve used BSD and made the whole kit and caboodle proprietary, which would be more their speed, but that wouldn’t have given them any open source cred, which they’re so desperately trying to garner. Since there’s no need to make it proprietary as it’s going to be sitting on Azure where it can be used without ever having to show the source code, why not use Linux to prove their newfound love for open source?

Christine HallChristine Hall

Christine Hall has been a journalist since 1971. In 2001, she began writing a weekly consumer computer column and started covering Linux and FOSS in 2002 after making the switch to GNU/Linux. Follow her on Twitter: @BrideOfLinux

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