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    wahid's Avatar
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    Oct 2003

    US court case: Renewed attack on open source software

    Here is another business as usual activity...LOL
    nothing personal...just looking after the next billion...
    Who is going to champion the cause of the end user...that unlimted source of big corporation riches and strength..... !

    US court case: Renewed attack on open source software

    By John Neilson
    12 December 2003

    On March 6 this year, the US software company SCO Group filed a $1 billion civil lawsuit against IBM, claiming the latter had stolen proprietary code from the Unix operating system for use in the current version of Linux, the *ree open source operating system.

    The case, of huge significance for the software industry as a whole, raises important issues about who owns Unix and Linux. More fundamentally though, it has again highlighted the ever-widening contradiction between so-called intellectual property (IP) rights and the development of science and technology in general, under conditions of far-reaching changes in the software production process over the last quarter century.

    In a subsequent court filing on June 16, SCO Group claims to own the copyrights and licensing rights to the Unix operating system. SCO charges that IBM not only misappropriated Unix source code, but that it was moreover part of an attempt by IBM to “destroy the economic value of Unix anywhere and everywhere in the world”. IBM had paid licensing fees to SCO as part of the development of its own version of Unix (AIX).
    Who owns Unix?
    The issue of who, if anyone, “owns” Unix is problematical, as a glance at its historical development shows.

    Unix was initially conceived and developed by AT&T’s Bell Laboratories in 1969. In the following three decades, Unix experienced rapid growth and development as different organisations produced and sold their own versions. It became by far the most dominant operating system used by large enterprises. Companies such as IBM, Sun Microsystems, Hewlett Packard, SCO as well as the University of California, each played major roles in this process.

    These companies, however, each laid a proprietary claim against their version of Unix, an action that was in stark contrast to the initial development of Unix and indeed computer software in general.
    LOL Mankind


    Last edited by wahid; 02-22-2004 at 08:25 AM.

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