Microsoft: we were wrong about open source



Condobloke

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It just leaves one to wonder if they have also seen the error of their ways in the Microsoft Services Agreement.....


Microsoft's Services Agreement:


" To the extent necessary to provide the Services to you and others, to protect you and the Services, and to improve Microsoft products and services, you grant to Microsoft a worldwide and royalty-free intellectual property license to use Your Content, for example, to make copies of, retain, transmit, reformat, display, and distribute via communication tools Your Content on the Services."


Source: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/servicesagreement
 

sp331yi

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Right on, Condobloke!
Taken together, it sounds as if M$ takes the right to use open source and call it their own, patents and all!
Can they really be trusted?
 
D

Deleted member 58530

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I don't trust any big corporations.

Unfortunately I still have to use Windows 10 to access certain websites that Linux can't access.

I don't like but have not other choice.
 

Nik-Ken-Bah

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Microsoft has gradually been adopting open source in recent years, including open-sourcing PowerShell, Visual Studio Code, and even Microsoft Edge’s original JavaScript engine. Microsoft has also partnered with Canonical to bring Ubuntu to Windows 10, and it acquired Xamarin to aid mobile app development and GitHub to maintain the popular code repository for developers.
Microsoft is even shipping a full Linux kernel in a Windows 10 update that will release later this month, and it moved to the Chromium browser engine for Edge last year. Microsoft is also collaborating with open-source communities to create PowerToys for Windows 10, and the company’s new open design philosophy may mean we’ll see a lot more open-source efforts in Windows in the years to come.

The disabling of open source by stealth that is what those two paragraphs are telling me.
They have been using a sledge hammer to beat opensource out of shape and unworkable, but that has resulted instead strengthening of the resilience of the opensource, the way a tree builds resilience when buffeted by the wind as it is growing by strengthening its root system.
But a tree can be weakened from the inside easier by parasites leading to its inability to resist the winds and it is toppled.
Closed source corporations are the wind and FOSS is the the tree.

I have no faith nor confidence in corporations that they will truly do what they say as they build their empires on delusions and illusions, and have more tricks up their sleeves than a Mandrake the Magician.
 

captain-sensible

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I have no faith nor confidence in corporations that they will truly do what they say as they build their empires on delusions and illusions, and have more tricks up their sleeves than a Mandrake the Magician.
if anyone sees Linux as a sort of "opposition" then to give you a metaphor some moan about the conservatives U.K but is the real problem that the opposition is not focused, doesn't work together like a football team and is generally "un-savvy" .
 

Alexzee

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Right on, Condobloke!
Taken together, it sounds as if M$ takes the right to use open source and call it their own, patents and all!
Can they really be trusted?
I sincerely doubt that they can be trusted, mate.

The government sued Microsoft for violating federal antitrust laws.
Google it when you have time.
 

70 Tango Charlie

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It just leaves one to wonder if they have also seen the error of their ways in the Microsoft Services Agreement.....


Microsoft's Services Agreement:


" To the extent necessary to provide the Services to you and others, to protect you and the Services, and to improve Microsoft products and services, you grant to Microsoft a worldwide and royalty-free intellectual property license to use Your Content, for example, to make copies of, retain, transmit, reformat, display, and distribute via communication tools Your Content on the Services."


Source: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/servicesagreement
@Condobloke @captain-sensible @Nik-Ken-Bah @Alexzee
Does a leopard change its' spots?
The MS Services Agreement sounds like they not only own the operating system but anything that you might develop using that system. If you write and instruction paper, it is theirs! In other words, they own you!
And I used to think that Apple was proprietary, Hah! I think MS is worse because they are deceitful about it.
As their agreement says - " to protect you and the Services" notice which word is capitalized.
When one slows down and digests what's in these agreements you must sign in order to use their merchandise, one gets an education in just who gets the shaft. No wonder. Legal 'experts' are the ones who concoct these assinine so-called agreements as to who gets protected.
It seems to me that anyone who believes that Microsoft is looking to protect you, is either uneducated, naive, ignorant, or just plain stupid.
Just the rambling thoughts of an Old Geezer :eek:
Tango Charlie
 

Nik-Ken-Bah

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It seems to me that anyone who believes that Microsoft is looking to protect you, is either uneducated, naive, ignorant, or just plain stupid.
With that statement I wholly concur .


Linux as a sort of "opposition"
I don't view Linux or FOSS ideology as an opposition but a natural reaction to the likes of MS and Mac as well as the others of their ilk.
As a reaction it has many reactionaries all coming from a different point of view. All with varying methods to solve problems that arise in making systems and programs work better.
Like little trickles that wind down a mountain they join brooks and in doing so slowly change the landscape they flow through.
 

HAL_2000

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Somewhere, General Akbar is shouting "It's a trap!"

The MS instinct has never been beneficial but one more closely related to Tron's "Master Control Program," or the Borg. If MS could not beat a competitor, they bought it.

Anyone remember this?

A Look at the Microsoft-funded SCO Lawsuit in Light of Newer Anti-Linux Microsoft Lawsuits

Posted in Courtroom, GNU/Linux, IBM, Law, Microsoft, Novell, SCO, TomTom, UNIX at 10:18 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


“…Microsoft wished to promote SCO and its pending lawsuit against IBM and the Linux operating system. But Microsoft did not want to be seen as attacking IBM or Linux.”
–Larry Goldfarb, Baystar, key investor in SCO


SCO had little existence other than as a vehicle to bring a lawsuit to users of Linux, claiming that it held the intellectual property rights and thus was owed, lots and lots and lots of money from those freeloading Linux users. It didn't seem to pass the smell test but the litigation dragged on and on until ending in a whimper.

Meanwhile MS has acquired SKYPE and LINKEDIN and just about anything that showed any promise on the internet.

I would be very, very wary of MS.


That being said, in my humble opinion, Linux will remain relegated to use by coders and developers, who love tinkering with Terminal Codes and compiling code, and remain out of the hands of the general computer-using population.

Why?

MOST people don't want to have to be a mechanic and know how to tear down a transmission in order to drive a car. MOST people take their driver's ed course, get their license and USE their car to drive from Point A to Point B.

I would extend that analogy to computer use.

Linux users cling to the Command Terminal like the Samurai did, well after the introduction of repeating rifles.

Moms, kids, grandpas want to be able to get on a computer and USE it, to read the news, play games, watch videos, send and receive e-mails.

Businesses want their IT to be secure, but also be readily understandable with a basic learning curve for the rank and file employee, so Minion-Employees can start being productive and generating TCP reports as soon as possible.

Neither General Public use nor Business use is served by having a new, esoteric operating system which is largely controlled by Terminal commands (something MS largely abandoned after Windows 95).

Please keep in mind that I am here because I have despised the politics and market practices of MS for a long time and want LINUX very much to win broad acceptance. But I have used the last two months to good advantage in striving mightily to learn LINUX. I've installed and uninstalled Zorin, Ubuntu, Lubuntu, LXLE, Linux Lite, Mint and Q4OS/XPQ4.

IMHO, coming in from the prospective of a long-time Windows user, wanting very much to avoid Windows 8/10, there are some things that at least ONE distro of LINUX will have to offer before it can gain broad general acceptance.


1) It needs to be easy to install and use, right out of the box.

Some distros are getting there. LXLE, Linux Lite and Q4OS are fairly easy to install. (I have just installed MINT and it looks promising). As to being easy to use, the program and application names should suggest their use, and in many cases, the icons and app/program names do not suggest their intended use.

2) Engineer at least one distro or version of a distro, that uses Graphic User Interface, and avoids reliance upon the Terminal.

Does anyone remember what MS was using before Windows?

By memory, first, there was the Heathkit (make it yourself) ALTAIR. Then there was Radio Shack / Tandy TRS-80. There were dozens of early computers, some using big floppy disks while others used cassette tape memory. Apple Mac shook things up with the Graphic User Interface and the "Mouse."

MS was still using the DOS command line, but suddenly came up with "Windows" it's own version of a GUI, driving complaints from Apple of MS stealing its 'Look and Feel.' Look and Feel was too ambiguous to earn legal intellectual property protection, and so Windows took off. Bill Gates became a very wealthy man, and the personal computer, using a GUI and not a command line, was broadly adopted by the general public.


3) There needs to be a place where new users can get quick and friendly 'how to' advice and problem solving.

This is probably the greatest hindrance to broad acceptance for Linux.

Naturally, there are exceptions, but getting friendly, clear and helpful assistance from other users is as rare as hen's teeth.

Any distro that can take the quick and secure Linux code, and put a user-friendly front end on it, and have a ready source of helpful answers to seemingly stupid questions will have earned the Brass Ring of mass public acceptance and steal the march from fortress Redmond.
 

Nik-Ken-Bah

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There needs to be a place where new users can get quick and friendly 'how to' advice and problem solving.
Yeah and even MS fails on that score from my experience of them.

The writer also forgot one very important aspect of why MS took off the way it did and it had nothing at all to do with the OS, it had to do with marketing before the internet. No matter what brand of computer you purchased they came with two items that made it hard to get away from using them.
MS windows and Intel processors.
Vindows was normally preinstalled when you bought a box, and the processor was Intel, the set-up included the materials required to install the OS whether that be 3.5 or the 2.5 floppy discs.
Other providers didn't really get a look in due to the hype that was spread about Vindows.
 

sp331yi

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There needs to be a place where new users can get quick and friendly 'how to' advice and problem solving. . . . This is probably the greatest hindrance to broad acceptance for Linux.
The real problem, IMHO, is the 'MS Mindset' where all one has to do is point-and-click, not thinking of nor understanding how to get where the User wants to go. As I understand secondhandly, even the 'cmd' command has been deleted from current offerings of MS Windows and tweaking the registry is out of the question. This midset is tantamount to mind control.
. . . but getting friendly, clear and helpful assistance from other users is as rare as hen's teeth.
Oh, really? Maybe for those with the aforementioned mindset!

Things have gotta (IMO) change and the present pandemic may help sway the staus quo of four months ago to where we value each other and ourselves as we are meant to. I read this Seattle Times article just a few minutes ago. It may be apropos here and now. As Fox News is fond of saying, "You decide!" LOL!
A Chance for a Reset . . .
 

HAL_2000

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HAL_2000 said:
There needs to be a place where new users can get quick and friendly 'how to' advice and problem solving.
Nik-Ken-Bah
Yeah and even MS fails on that score from my experience of them.

Customer service from nearly every vendor fails on that part, which horror stories of getting routed through a maze of voice-menus and speaking to rude and unhelpful foreign nationals with heavy foreign accents... it's not the pay-for assistance I am speaking of.

I respectfully submit that the differences between the Masses paying for and using Windows, versus, Free, but limited acceptance Linux, are: ease of use, and ability to get questions answered quickly and without too much drama.

I've been rebuilding Windows-based computers since the late 1980's as a hobby and not a profession.

For Windows-based machines, there is a wealth of fora where you can get tech assistance. Naturally, there are always those who respond with non sequiturs like "it can't be done," or, "buy a new computer," when the call of the question is: 'how do I fix this situation with this computer?'

In the intervening years I have almost always found an article or help forum which provided the fix, and usually, without too much of a wait.

Contrast this with informal tech assistance for Linux. I've been to Ask Ubuntu and other Linux-based fora and the mindset is very different.

I could not have better encapsulated the Mindset better than Eric Steven Raymond.

How To Ask Questions The Smart Way

Table of Contents
Translations
Disclaimer
Introduction
Before You Ask
When You Ask
Choose your forum carefully
Stack Overflow
Web and IRC forums
As a second step, use project mailing lists
Use meaningful, specific subject headers
Make it easy to reply
Write in clear, grammatical, correctly-spelled language
Send questions in accessible, standard formats
Be precise and informative about your problem
Volume is not precision
Don't rush to claim that you have found a bug
Grovelling is not a substitute for doing your homework
Describe the problem's symptoms, not your guesses
Describe your problem's symptoms in chronological order
Describe the goal, not the step
Don't ask people to reply by private e-mail
Be explicit about your question
When asking about code
Don't post homework questions
Prune pointless queries
Don't flag your question as “Urgent”, even if it is for you
Courtesy never hurts, and sometimes helps
Follow up with a brief note on the solution
How To Interpret Answers
RTFM and STFW: How To Tell You've Seriously Screwed Up
If you don't understand...Dealing with rudeness
On Not Reacting Like A Loser
Questions Not To Ask
Good and Bad Questions
If You Can't Get An Answer
How To Answer Questions in a Helpful Way
http://www.catb.org/%7Eesr/faqs/smart-questions.html#idm667

While some of this goes without saying, there is a sense of contempt you get by asking questions in the 'wrong' way, to a degree and intensity I have not encountered in the Windows world. It brings to mind the Seinfeld Soup N a z i attitude.

In his guide, Raymond writes:

What we are, unapologetically, is hostile to people who seem to be unwilling to think or to do their own homework before asking questions. People like that are time sinks — they take without giving back, and they waste time we could have spent on another question more interesting and another person more worthy of an answer. We call people like this “losers” (and for historical reasons we sometimes spell it “lusers”).

We realize that there are many people who just want to use the software we write, and who have no interest in learning technical details. For most people, a computer is merely a tool, a means to an end; they have more important things to do and lives to live. We acknowledge that, and don't expect everyone to take an interest in the technical matters that fascinate us.

Nevertheless, our style of answering questions is tuned for people who do take such an interest and are willing to be active participants in problem-solving. That's not going to change. Nor should it; if it did, we would become less effective at the things we do best.


As long as that is the prevailing attitude in many places where "noobs" seek assistance in getting around software issues, Linux will remain something relegated to programmers, coders and IT types.

On a brighter note, some of the recent Distros are moving closer and closer to user friendliness in the INSTALL and USE components.

LINUX as a whole has huge potential following.

The reason I am here, for instance, is that I do not like the increasing control and invasiveness of MS products. You must be personally identifiable. Some of you are already well aware of what happens to personally identifiable information on the internet, and it needn't even be embarrassing selfies and browsing history.

In addition, the costs, the bloat, the built-in crippling of software packages.

Linux, aside from some commercial distros, is free. It should have massive market penetration. MS costs and MS-related software can have substantial costs. So, on one hand, you have a FREE operating system with paltry market penetration, and then you have a glitchy, bloated, intrusive operating system which costs money.

I respectfully submit that the differences are: ease of use, and ability to get questions answered quickly and without too much drama.

I am not advocating for those who enter a forum and ask a stupid, lazy question. In that respect, I agree with Raymond. But if Linux is to gain broader acceptance and use, it has to take into account that the average computer user does not want to compile a driver or download endless dependencies, they need to be able to select and download a file from a support site, click on it and have it install. This is the standard the Windows environment has set, and expecting more of the average user is not realistic.
 

HAL_2000

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Nik Ken Bah wrote
"The writer also forgot one very important aspect of why MS took off the way it did and it had nothing at all to do with the OS, it had to do with marketing before the internet. No matter what brand of computer you purchased they came with two items that made it hard to get away from using them."

Not at all, Nik.

For a while after graduation, I had to take a job selling computers while I did my regular job search. We had one regular customer who shopped for computers based on their hardware. This was in the mid-1990's. He would tell me that he did not care about whatever software or OS was installed on the machine in question (we sold both Intel and Mac based machines).

And why not? Because when he got his new hardware home, he'd wipe the hard drives and install Linux. He told me that Linux could move swiftly with even less RAM than a comparable Windows or Mac system.

Aside from the TEACH YOURSELF LINUX books you would find at Barnes & Noble with an install disk (I remember getting Red Hat and Mandrake), Linux has always been free. Nothing has stopped anyone from downloading and installing LINUX on whatever hardware they had.
 
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70 Tango Charlie

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@HAL_2000 @Nik-Ken-Bah

Hal,

Just because something is 'free' does not mean that there is no cost involved.
Take this forum for example. Use of it is 'free' but there is a cost involved in keeping it running.
The cost of using Linux is the time it takes to learn a few things that the average Windows or Mac people are not interested in paying. So really, they should continue paying with money to have someone else do their thinking for them. Many people simply do not like the cost of freedom.
Besides that, why do people think that Desktop Linux needs to be more popular?

One other thing I have noticed with people coming to Linux from a Windows environment - they seem to be in a very big hurry. {I was guilty of this myself when I first started with Linux}. I since have found that the best way to digest something is to 's l o w d o w n' a little bit.

As far as getting help with questions, there is so much help online for Linux that I don't think anyone could read it all in several years time. In addition to that, many folks just do not know how to phrase a question properly. Some of the time they don't even know what to ask.

I for one, do not think that Linux should be for everyone, just as flying airplanes is not for everyone.
Just some wandering thoughts of an Old Geezer,
Tango Charlie.
Cheers!
 

HAL_2000

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Hello Tango Charlie (sounds MilSpec! ),

In many ways I do agree with you, from my understanding of your points:

1) There is an opportunity - cost to the use of any operating system / application.

Absolutely.

If you have a business, you don't want your employees essentially off the clock and learning how to use their software. Rather, you would like to have an easy, intuitive interface that allows the employee to start to USE the software to do productive work as quickly as possible.

I suppose those whose work is focused on compiling code will disagree, but good engineering of any device is doing as much of the unnecessary thinking for the intended user in advance, so that the user can focus on the USE and not how that device works.

I'll use a couple analogies. First, does anyone remember the days of DIP switches and Jumpers on motherboards? Certainly, having jumpers and DIP switches gives the user granular control of what is going on with the motherboard circuitry, but the fact of the matter is that the engineering progressed to the point that anything you needed to do with Jumpers and DIP switches has now been taken over by the software, and those are unnecessary steps today to operate a mothernboard.

And Tango Charlie, if you are an old veteran as your handle suggests, you might remember two different weapons: the Thompson submachine gun and the AK-47. Both were famous in their day, but their paths diverged broadly due to their design philosophies.

The Thompson submachine, aka Tommy Gun was the automatic that made the 1920's roar (so it was said), and even saw some service in WWII in a slightly altered form. But if you ever hefted one, much less shot one, you would know that it was very heavy as far as subguns went, and very complicated to break down, clean and reassemble. Those were critical things in a wartime environment. Of course, teaching troops in maintenance took valuable time.

The Tommy was replaced by the extremely simple Grease Gun (M3A1 if you'd like to look it up), which was very simple to learn to use, clean and maintain. It fired the same bullet as the Tommy. The JOB was firing, but the MEANS was simplified. Same thing for the AK, which saw worldwide adoption. The AK has been very successful in that it is reliable, robust and simple to learn and use.

The KISS principle is one that follows the advancement of many designs. Cars don't need to be hand-cranked to start. Airplane engines don't need someone to swing the prop to get it started.


2) Windows users are more in a hurry to get answers.

Agreed. But I also don't think that's a bad thing.


3) Linux is not for everyone.

Agreed. Certainly in its current state of development.

Is there room enough in Linux for one more distro that will have broad appeal?

I would like to think that there is, as, since Linux is highly configurable, there could be at least one PLAYSKOOL LINUX that uses a GUI frontend for the everyday user, while having the same efficient Linux code running in the background.

I've been building and gifting computers to the needy for years now. Kids, moms, vets. One thing in common that such users share is that if they encounter a roadblock, 'the computer is broken' and at the very least, they don't use it. Just as often, they throw a perfectly good piece of hardware away.

So any machine I give away has to be ready to use and require the least possible amount of instruction necessary for the average user to begin using it right away. This is the sort of user, which I respectfully submit, Linux is currently unsuited for.

Please remember that I don't like MS all that much, but do like Win 7 a great deal. I would like Linux to prosper and put a big dent in Redmond's market share. It will not do that when there is no Linux install which isn't as complicated as a Rube Goldberg device.


4) Folks should all slow down and enjoy life.

Sage advice. Not always possible when you punch someone else's clock.

But I agree with the sentiment.
 

Nik-Ken-Bah

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HAL_2000

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@Nik-Ken-Bah

This was in the early days of Windows, so the standard OS for PCs at the time was Windows 95. We called them Intel boxes, as opposed to Macs, which we understood to use Motorola CPUs. The Intel PC brands included some that are rarely, if ever, seen today, Packard Bell (which always had an odd, medical smell when you opened the cases), NEC, IBM, Acer, Compaq, along with Toshiba, Dell and others.

The suite of applications varied with the model and manufacturer.

I found it odd that they generally did not have the Macs on as working displays, so I can't tell you all that much about Macs, aside from the fact that Mac owners were very loyal and enthusiastic about the brand.
 

Nik-Ken-Bah

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