Microsoft claiming that it loves open source?! What next? Cats and dogs living together?!
Seriously, in a recent Network World interview, Microsoft’s General Manager of Interoperability and XML Architecture Jean Paoli said, “We [Microsoft] love open source” and that “We have worked with open source for a long time now.”
Really? But what about Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer saying “Linux is a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches” back in 2001? Paoli dodged that one saying that confusing all open-source technology with Linux was “really very early on” and “That was really a long time ago. We understand our mistake.”
Actually, Paoli just proved with that statement that Microsoft still doesn’t get it. Ballmer was using Linux as the prime example of what he saw as the critical problem of the GPLv2 (GNU General Public License, version 2). Guess what? Linux, the world’s most popular open-source program, is still under the GPLv2. A lot of other great open-source software is licensed with it or its updated version, the GPLv3. The bottom line is that a lot of important open-source software is as dangerous (or not) as it ever was to Microsoft’s way of doing things.