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The patents used by IBM against Hercules are a threat to several major FOSS projects

Apr 13, 2010, 23:02 (21 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Florian Mueller)

"As I reported last week, IBM sent a list of 173 patents (67 of them applications) to the founder of the Hercules open source project.

"Meanwhile I have taken a closer look at some of the patents. The patents IBM uses against Hercules are also a potential threat to other key FOSS projects. Based on a first analysis, those include (but are not limited to) OpenBSD, Xen, VirtualBox, Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization, MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite and Kaffe.

"I will list below the relevant patent numbers and explain why I believe they could be used against certain projects. Considering that IBM has already used them in a threat letter to TurboHercules, those patents must be considered particularly dangerous. I just explained why IBM's attack on Hercules is an attack on interoperability and FOSS innovation in general. The fact that the patents in action here are also a threat to other key FOSS projects underscores the need to act."

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