Breaking news: IBM, Nokia, and others join in patent pledge to accelerate OSGi adoption

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This press release is just out: “Leading Tech Companies Unite to Boost OSGi Technology with Royalty-Free Patent Pledge; Plan Will Encourage Use of Open, Dynamic Software Components in Computers and Devices That Use Java“. Here’s an excerpt:

SAN RAMON, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–July 26, 2006–Five high-technology companies and the OSGi(TM) Alliance announced today that they will pledge royalty-free access to necessary patents that can speed the adoption of OSGi technology worldwide. The technology creates a service-oriented, component-based environment for developers and provides standardized ways to manage the software lifecycle. These capabilities greatly increase the value of a wide range of computers and devices that use the Java(TM) platform. The team includes the OSGi Alliance (http://www.osgi.org/) itself as well as OSGi members Gatespace Telematics (http://www.gatespacetelematics.com/), IBM (http://www.ibm.com/us/), Nokia (http://www.nokia.com/), ProSyst Software (http://www.prosyst.com/osgi.html) and Samsung (http://www.samsung.com/).

The OSGi Alliance brings together world-class technologists and business experts dedicated to developing and promoting open, industry-standardized solutions to address fundamental new challenges and opportunities posed by a networked world. In today’s world, more of the value provided by all kinds of devices is driven by software and the interaction of that software with networks.

Specifically, the six organizations want to spur innovation among software developers by pledging royalty-free access to any of their patents necessary for the implementation of OSGi Service Platform Release 4. This open OSGi platform is the industry-leading component software standard for networked computers and devices. It spans digital mobile phones, vehicles, embedded appliances, residential gateways, industrial computers, desktop PCs, and, most recently, high-end servers, including mainframes.

The OSGi Service Platform offers increased value, because it allows developers to create sophisticated, component-based solutions and then assemble compatible software components on a customized, “just-in-time” basis. More specifically, it provides a standardized, dynamic module system for applications and services that use the Java platform. Users can therefore manage the lifecycles of software components, which can be installed, assembled, updated, combined with other functions or removed “on the fly” — without disrupting the operation of a device.

Today’s action is notable because it formally extends royalty-free access to necessary patents owned by these six organizations to the general public to encourage use of the OSGi Service Platform Release 4. Previously, such access was generally granted to full OSGi members. The details of today’s action are provided in each organization’s pledge. (To view the pledges, please use the following URL: http://www.osgi.org/products/non-assert.asp?section=3).

I’ll have links to stories as they appear.


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