20th dec, 2006

Bill Gates om Linux og IP

Som nogle af dem der har fulgt min og Anders´s debat om MS Novell aftalen vil vide er der nogle spørgsmål om Microsoft og deres IP som der ikke helt er enighed om;-)

Niall Kennedy har haft muligheden for at spørge Bill Gates om hvad der egentlig foregår?

Mht. IP svarer Bill:

We’ve been doing patent cross-licenses for a long-time. It was a tradition in the computer industry and so we had to go out to all of those companies and give them value, so if they had some intellectual property we could get a license from them.

Digital Equipment, SGI, Hewlett-Packard, NCR, we had to do about 50 different agreements. IBM is the mother of them all, to get the cross-patent agreement with them.

I think because we had a flurry of those, about 10 years to get those basic cross-patent deals in place. I’m not sure if we’re at our peak on that or not. I know we did a ton because we indemnify our users. When you buy Microsoft software we say “hey, if there’s any patent problems, we indemnify you for that.” So we have to both protect enough of our own stuff and have enough licenses in that we can feel comfortable providing that for people.

We got some IP rights from Novell. Novell’s customers got some IP rights from us. It’s pretty normal stuff. The only thing that’s abnormal is open source companies hadn’t been involved in IP licensing and indemnification before. In terms of the commercial industry it’s business as usual.

Så fra Microsofts side er det business as usual, hvilket efter min mening lyder meget sandsynligt. 

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