We do not...agree with Microsoft's characterization of the situation involving GPLv3. Microsoft cannot by any act of anticipatory repudiation divest itself of its obligation to respect others' copyrights. If Microsoft distributes our works licensed under GPLv3, or pays others to distribute them on its behalf, it is bound to do so under the terms of that license. It may not do so under any other terms; it cannot declare itself exempt from the requirements of GPLv3.… Read more
Students everywhere are stirring from their summer stupors to stock up on supplies for the coming year. If your back-to-school must list doesn't include software, listen up. Browse some picks of student-friendly downloads for elementary-aged young'uns to graduate scholars, or get a run-down in the video below.
Earlier I had a trilogy of postings about DropMyRights (Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3) that included the warning to run Microsoft Office applications in restricted mode in case a file (Word document, Excel spreadsheet, etc.) carried a virus or some other type of malicious software.
But what do you do if a Word document or Excel spreadsheet doesn't display or work properly when the application is run in restricted mode? A decision needs to be made whether to trust the file and open it in unrestricted mode.
If the file was sent to you by e-mail, you'… Read more
Why would anyone steal free software? Hint: it's not about the price, it's about the freedom. Some downstream users want their software with no obligations attached. In other words, they want someone else's cake, and they want to eat it, too.
Selfish, greedy, naughty people.
But now there's apparently a way to detect and prove GPL violations, as reported on Slashdot. The technique is called birthmarking, and while the academic paper [PDF] calls for birthmarking Java, the same technique is generalizable to other languages.
Here's how it works:… Read more
InfoWorld is reporting that IBM may soon open source key parts of its Jazz collaboration software. Jazz comes from the Rational side of IBM's business, and is a development tool that facilitates code collaboration between developers. It's not the sexiest project out there, but arguably a useful one.We might think about open-sourcing some of the very lowest layers (of the framework) so that the APIs (application programming interfaces) are available, and people could build on the kernel.
The reason? To drive pervasiveness of the Jazz platform.
Open source is just about the only way to get platform ubiquity in today's software world. IBM understands this better than most. What it might want to watch out for is its messaging around the move....… Read more
As the author of both the headline and the blog, I'm glad you took the time to write down your thoughts, not just curse me inwardly, because it affords me the opportunity to offer the following response. It is, as the blogosphere cliche goes, a conversation.
The headline is perhaps a bit snarky, but I don't think it's wholly inaccurate. John Loiacono took pains to point out the flaws of … Read more
In advance of Labor Day weekend and its inevitable coast-to-coast traffic jams, Microsoft is releasing Streets & Trips 2008 software. Among the new features in the deluxe edition are live traffic updates, information on nearby gas prices, and estimates of what filling up along the journey will cost for that Hummer, Prius, or whatever else you're driving. It also hooks up to Live Search maps that you can mark up, and which chart businesses including hotels, snack spots and camping areas.
Despite such helpful features, this product seems like an odd fit in the market when you can get … Read more
Adobe Systems has embraced open-source software for some products, but its core Creative Suite line looks like it'll remain proprietary.
In a blog posting Sunday, Adobe's top creative products executive, John Loiacono, made unflattering remarks about open-source alternatives whose free cost is offset by the time that creative pros have to spend fiddling. "Time is money," he opines, not without merit, and links to a blog posting by Eric Vreeland, who observed, "Debugging recent installs of certain open-source software has wasted immense amounts of my spare time; charged at my hourly rate these hours represent … Read more
I've always liked Jive Software. My company, Alfresco, is used in conjunction with Jive's products in a range of accounts, and so I've had the chance to talk directly with Jive's customers. They all say the same thing: Jive's "lightweight" collaboration provides heavy-duty benefits at a significant cost advantage.
Like so much else on the Internet, you have to be skeptical about the star ratings of software. Perhaps you suspected this, but now there is proof.
A software developer in the U.K., Andy Brice, was suspicious about the ratings assigned to his software, so he did a test--a lab experiment if you will. He started with a plain text file that said "this program does nothing at all" a few times. Then he renamed the file so that it ended with ".exe" and submitted it to 1,033 download sites. The "program," … Read more