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[News] Microsoft is Losing Its FUD Against Linux

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"The European Patent Office is an executive organisation, it deals especially
with patent applicants, as such, its view of the world may be biased. As an
executive organisation, its interpretative powers are very limited. The
European Patent Convention excludes computer programs, it is outside the EPO's
power to change this."


The Partial Victory in Microsoft Vs. TomTom

,----[ Quote ]
| Although Microsoft asserted in a May 13, 2007, Fortune magazine article that 
| it had concluded open source code violates 235 of its patents and the Linux 
| kernel in particular, 42, it only claimed TomTom was infringing on three of 
| its patents.    



Microsoft Vs. TomTom: Beating A Dead Horse

,----[ Quote ]
| So in the short term, Microsoft didn't gain very much by picking on TomTom.
| And in the long term, the company's decision to sue could explode in its
| face.
| TomTom may have stepped aside, but some much bigger and better-funded
| open-source players are now stepping up to the plate. The Open Invention
| Network, for example, is already pondering a counterattack that could include
| legal action designed to invalidate Microsoft's FAT patent.


TomTom & Microsoft each file notices of dismissal "without prejudice"

,----[ Quote ]
| Two notices of dismissal have been filed with the courts -- Microsoft's in
| Washington State, and TomTom's in Virginia, each dismissed without prejudice,
| ending both patent litigations. "Without prejudice" means that either could
| ramp it up and do this some more in the future, should circumstances arise
| that made it necessary. But in most cases, it means the litigation, or
| whatever, is over. Remember when SCO withdrew "without prejudice" its
| emergency motion to sell its assets, or Novell's assets, depending on your
| point of view? We never saw that again, did we, despite it being
| withdrawn "without prejudice".


Analysis: Microsoft-TomTom settlement is end of a battle, not the war

,----[ Quote ]
| The Software Freedom Law Center, an organization focused on protecting
| open-source and free software, said in a statement that the "settlement
| between Microsoft and TomTom ends one phase of the community's response to
| Microsoft patent aggression and begins another. On the basis of the
| information we have, we have no reason to believe that TomTom's settlement
| agreement with Microsoft violates the license on the kernel, Linux, or any
| other free software used in its products. The settlement neither implies that
| Microsoft patents are valid nor that TomTom's products were or are
| infringing."


TomTom - "Settled, But Not Over Yet" says SFLC

,----[ Quote ]
| There's more. Red Hat's legal eagles have put out a statement too, the meat
| of which is this: "Red Hat was not a party to this case. Even so, without a
| judicial decision, the settlement does not demonstrate that the claims of
| Microsoft were valid."
| In fact, SFLC says they believe they are invalid:
|     The FAT filesystem patents on which Microsoft sued are now and have
|     always been invalid patents in our professional opinion. SFLC remains
|     committed to protecting the interests of our clients and the community.
|     We will act forcefully to protect all users and developers of free
|     software against further intimidation or interference from these patents.
|     SFLC, working with the Open Invention Network and the Linux Foundation,
|     is pleased to participate in a coordinated, carefully graduated response
|     on behalf of all the community's members to ongoing anti-competitive
|     Microsoft conduct. We believe in strength through unity, and we think our
|     community's unity in the face of these threats has helped to bring about
|     Microsoft's quick settlement on all issues with TomTom.

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