So what gives? According to Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft’s corporate vice president deputy general counsel for intellectual property, this case is not about open-source, specifically. In an interview with Todd Bishop at TechFlash, he explained:
… open-source software is not the focal point of this action. The case against TomTom involves infringement of Microsoft patents by TomTom devices that employ both proprietary and open-source, and as I said, out of the eight patents, five of them relate to proprietary software infringement.
Some cool-headed folks within the Linux community also spoke out yesterday, urging others to “calm down.” One of these was the executive director of the Linux Foundation, Jim Zemlin, who posted a blog post that began with just that phrase. Other open-source leaders were leery, as was indicated in a CNET news piece on the suit.
It’s too early to tell, but from what I have seen, all the Linux community can do is watch and learn, and as Zemlin says, “hope for the best, and prepare for the worst.”]]>