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08.31.07

Xandros CEO Brags About Open Standards, But Signs ‘Intellectual Property’ Deals with Microsoft

Posted in GNU/Linux, Interoperability, Interview, Standard, Xandros at 9:17 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Loving standards, until Microsoft offers some cash

It is both awkward and appalling that a CEO who realises the value of standardisation at the same time looks the other way. He gets lured in by those who snub standards by requiring pricey agreements to enable and facilitate communication and collaboration. One such examples would be Xandros and its ‘intellectual property’ deal, as described by the article below. Andreas Typaldos did an interview with LinuxInsider and the text has just been publshed. Have a look.

LinuxInsider: Do you see the availability of so many Linux distros having a deleterious affect on Xandros’ growth and popularity?

Typaldos [Xandros CEO]: Not really. The nature of Linux is that anyone can put out his or her own flavor, so the plethora of choices should come as no surprise. More critical from our point of view is that software vendors should be able to support all the major Linux distros in a single pass, and this is being addressed through the Linux Standards Base and other work of The Linux Foundation.

If you have standards, then why sign patent deals for ‘interoperability’? “Interoperability” — going by Microsoft’s definition — is rarely about standards and it is usually a strong statement against standards. It’s about binary bridges and ‘interoperability tax’ or ‘innovation tax’.

“It’s like selling your mother’s blood for booze money”

According to sources, Typaldos and his company received (not paid) money to fall into this generalisable and unwanted patent trap. 20 million dollars to sign a patent deal, according to a less verifiable source. If this is true, here’s wishing to Andreas that he’ll enjoy his Xandros laptop in his new yacht.

Don’t forget where you came from and never bite the hand that fed you. It’s a poor strategy. It’s like selling your mother’s blood for booze money. You might have a good time for a little while, but sooner or later, the police will have you pull over.

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