ZDNet: Microsoft’s ironic valentine

February is the month most Americans reserve for sending
notes to loved ones, but Microsoft sent anything but hugs and
kisses this year in a series of interviews criticizing the Open
Source community.
Following Steve Ballmer’s proclamation that
Linux is currently the greatest threat to Microsoft, a handful of
Microsoft executives began a rather reckless attack of Open Source
— and everything related to it. Doug Miller piped in with “there’s
little value in free” and James Allchin boldly cried that Open
Source is an “intellectual property destroyer” that “kills

“Microsoft should have sent the Open Source community a big box
of candy and dozens of roses. Open Source software has been the
epicenter of some of the greatest innovations of our industry —
namely, the Internet. And these innovations have benefited
Microsoft handsomely. Sound ridiculous? Let me explain.”

“The genius of the Internet was two-fold: (1) its decentralized
architecture, which made it scalable, and (2) its implementation of
truly open protocols, which made it ubiquitous. Unlike gold, whose
value is in its scarcity, the value of a network is a function of
its ubiquity. The Internet was not the first computer network, but
it was the first that could grow organically without central
control. It was also the first network with published, Open Source
implementations of its fundamental protocol, TCP/IP, enabling
compatibility among competing implementations.”


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