Starting an open source business: preliminary thoughts

I’ve been very surprised as I’ve looked around the web that there doesn’t seem to be very many good guides about the nuts and bolts of starting an open source business. There are odds and ends, yes, and conferences that have sessions here and there, but given all the thousands…

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Government and open source: Public interest

This week I’m going to pose a series of questions in the hope of driving some discussion around the use of open source in government, as well as government involvement in open source. (General warm-up question) In what ways is it in the public’s interest for a government to make…

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Eco-Patent Commons news

There’s news today from the World Business Council for Sustainable Development that Ricoh and Taisei have joined the Eco-Patent Commons and Dupont has contributed more patents. From the release: Eco-Patent Commons, launched by IBM, Nokia, Pitney Bowes and Sony in partnership with the WBCSD, was founded on the commitment that…

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IBM’s patent announcement today

Today IBM announced that for the 16th year in a row, it received more US patents than any other company, The number for 2008 was also a record, 4186, for any company. Here are a couple of links to the story: New York Times: “Patent King I.B.M. Will Give Away…

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My personal favorite posts for 2008

As we wind down down 2008 and head into the holidays, I’ve been doing some planning about blog posts and longer pieces I plan to write in 2009. As part of that, I decided to go back over 2008 and list some of favorite posts from this year. “Ten challenges…

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Compatibility, interoperability, and interchangeability

I often find it amusing when people pull out a very significant sounding, obviously committee-written definition of “interoperability.” If I didn’t know better, I would have thought that the definition was written and then delivered on a stone tablet. Is this necessary, or is interoperability one of those things that…

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Everyone’s talking: standards reform

I’m a relative newbie when it comes to standards, only being involved for the last 12 or 13 years. I’ve never before seen the amount of attention that is being brought to the idea of standards reform by so many groups of people at various levels of organization. Rather than…

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LinuxWorld 2008 Prediction #7: Standards

Although I’ve previously published the slides for the talk I gave at LinuxWorld 2008 in San Francisco, I thought it might be useful to add some additional comments in the blog about each of the eight predictions I made. This is not the full text of what I said nor…

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CNet: “Free-software lawyers: Don’t trust Microsoft’s Open XML patent pledge”

[edited, less musical] See Martin Lamonica’s CNet article “Free-software lawyers: Don’t trust Microsoft’s Open XML patent pledge”. Compare with the 2006 statement from the Software Freedom Law Center’ regarding ODF, the Open Document Format, an ISO standard: On the factual basis described, and subject to reservations, it is our opinion…

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Ten challenges and priorities for open standards in 2008

Over the next couple of weeks I plan to publish several entries on “challenges and priorities in 2008” on a range of topics, some related to work areas of interest, some related to personal ones. I’m kicking this off today with standards. In 2008, I think that we collectively should…

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Standards: We need to talk

Last Friday I had the pleasure of speaking at Tsinghua University in Beijing at an IBM-sponsored conference attended by over 200 government officials, business leaders, and academicians to discuss the confluence of three important topics: open standards, innovation, and intellectual property policy. Below you’ll find the text of my address,…

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TCI Global Competitiveness Conference in Portland, Oregon

I’ll be giving the lunch keynote at the TCI Global Competitiveness Conference in Portland on Wednesday. The info about the talk is From Closed to Open—How the Technology Industry Learned to Share Wednesday, October 10, 12-1:30 pm In the IT industry, innovation is everything. For decades that meant the design,…

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The Peer-to-Patent: Community Patent Review project

If you’ve followed the things I’ve discussed over the last three years in this blog, you’ll note that while I’ve talked about open source and standards, I’ve also discussed patent pledges and some of the things that IBM has done to improve patent quality. This entry has some information about…

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An “OOXML is a bad idea” blog entry compendium

I thought I would put together a list of some of my blog entries that touch on the OOXML issue now being considered in the JTC1 Fast Track Procedure. This isn’t everything I’ve ever written, but it includes most of the main points. I’ve also included a few related entries.…

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Google becomes an OIN licensee to spur innovation, protect Linux

Per the press release: San Francisco (August 7, 2007) Open Invention Network (OIN), the company formed to spur innovation and protect the Linux System, today extended the Linux Ecosystem with the signing of Google as its first end-user licensee. By becoming a licensee, Google has joined the growing list of…

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Interoperability Specifications Pledge

This morning IBM announced a broad patent pledge that covers over 150 of the core software interoperability standards. These standards had all been previously given royalty free licenses, but from a variety of sources at a variety of times. This action simplifies and makes more consistent the intellectual property situation…

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Top Ten blog entries and some stats

I’ve now been up and running on this new host long enough that I’ve decided I can resume my monthly publication of the top ten blog entries that people have directly accessed. I’ve also added a few stats on the bottom of the list related to overall readership. Here are…

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Can you guess what this study is going to conclude?

See “Study: Developers Do Not Want GPL 3 to Police Patents” in eWeek. It starts: A new Microsoft-funded study has found that open-source developers do not believe that licenses such as the upcoming GNU General Public License 3.0 should enforce software patents or prevent deals like the Microsoft-Novell patent agreement.…

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#16. My Second Life: From the grid to a universe

As a reminder, this blog entry contains my personal opinions and does not necessarily represent the ideas of my employer IBM regarding virtual worlds in general or Second Life in particular. The rise in popularity of online multiplayer games and 3D interaction environments like Second Life naturally brings into question…

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Blackboard sort of does a patent pledge

Today Blackboard, a company in the education and course management area, announced a patent pledge: Specifically, the Pledge commits Blackboard not to assert U.S. Patent No. 6,988,138 and many other pending patent applications against the development, use or distribution of open source software or home-grown course management systems anywhere in…

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#2. Contradicting Microsoft Office Open XML – Updegrove

Andy Updegrove has written a very nice piece called “The Contradictory Nature of OOXML” about some of the problems with Microsoft’s Office Open XML specification that it would like the ISO to adopt in addition to ODF. Toward the end he says: As the February 5 deadline for report ing…

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Some new commentary on Microsoft/Novell deal

Here are some links to stories that broke today regarding the Microsoft/Novell deal: InfoWorld: “OIN speaks out on the Novell/Microsoft pact” Here is part of the OIN statement: “Customers can only benefit from greater interoperability between Linux and Microsoft products. In fact, interoperability has long been a known requirement, and…

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Microsoft vs. Novell

No wonder people were confused. See “Open Letter to the Community from Novell” and “Microsoft Statement on Novell Agreement”. Update: Here are a few more links: ZDNet blog: “This Microsoft-Novell partnership’s not all it’s cracked up to be” You know a partnership isn’t all it’s cracked up to be when…

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Will there be another Java?

This is the second version of this entry. In the first, I think I mentioned Java too often and in ways that opened myself up for criticism as a heretic, even though it wasn’t really my intention to find fault. This is especially true because the history of Java-the-phenomenon is…

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Office 2.0 Conference: “One Day in the Life of an Office 2.0 Worker” panel

Moderator: Matt Marshall Participants: Eric Hoffert, TJ Kang, Tom Snyder, Sridhar Vembu, Kevin Warnock, David Young This panel consists of various startups trying to do realtime online demos of their offerings. We’re in the second one and so far they both sound like pitches for VCs (probably are, and there…

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New IBM patent policy II

Yesterday I promised to post more about IBM’s new corporate patent policy. Let’s start with the broadcast links: IBM’s Dave Kappos talks on National Public Radio Discussion on CNN American Morning: Minding Your Business and here are some online print links: The press release: “IBM Establishes Worldwide Patent Policy to…

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