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Novell VP Openly Laments Microsoft Deal

According to IDG news service, Novell Vice President Miguel de Icaza publicly decried his company's patent licensing deal with Microsoft at Redmond's MIX08 conference last week in Las Vegas.

"I'm not happy about the fact that such an agreement was made, but [the decision] was above my pay grade; I think we should have stayed with the open-source community," IDG reported de Icaza as saying at the panel, which also included representatives from Microsoft, Zend and Mozilla.

The statement came as part of a discussion on how the patent licensing agreement will work with Novell's port of Silverlight to Linux, called Moonlight. According to the report, de Icaza said that anyone who downloads Moonlight will be covered, but distributing Moonlight code is another question: "...you have to talk to Microsoft."

At the same panel, however, according to IDG reporter Elizabeth Montalbo, de Icaza jumped to Novell's defense about signing the agreement later in the discussion in response to comments from Mozilla by pointing out that Novell wasn't the only one to sign and that many tech companies have patent licensing agreements with other tech companies, such as IBM.

Novell signed its patent protection deal with Microsoft in November 2006.

Read the full report here.

About the Author

Becky Nagel is the vice president of Web & Digital Strategy for 1105's Enterprise Computing and Education Groups, where she oversees the front-end Web team and deals with all aspects of digital strategy for the groups. She also serves as executive editor the ECG Web sites, and you'll even find her byline on PureAI.com, the ECG group's newest site for enterprise developers working with AI. She recently gave a talk at a leading technical publishers conference about how changes in Web technology may impact publishers' bottom lines. Follow her on twitter @beckynagel.

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