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Re: [DotGNU]Re: the .NET API patent issue

From: Norbert Bollow
Subject: Re: [DotGNU]Re: the .NET API patent issue
Date: Sat, 11 Oct 2003 03:41:22 +0200 (CEST)

Hash: SHA1

Rhys Weatherley <address@hidden> wrote:

> I feel that it is best that DotGNU take a two-pronged approach to patent 
> avoidance.
> The first prong is to build all of the MS API's, using stock-standard, 
> non-tricky algorithms.  This is needed for compatibility and for migrating 
> Windows programmers away from dependence upon Microsoft's .NET 
> implementation.
> During this, all major features will be marked up with #if's in the
> code.  The #if's are primarily for stripping the size of the system
> down for embedded platforms.  But they are also useful should
> Microsoft take issue with some feature - the #if's will tell us
> exactly what code to remove upon reception of a cease-and-desist.
> The second prong is to develop completely different ways of doing similar 
> things.  e.g. DGEE instead of ASP.NET, MACS instead of Passport, Qt#/Gtk# 
> instead of Winforms, etc.  Any core functionality that DotGNU
> requires should be rooted in ECMA-only API's (e.g. Xsharp works just
> fine in ECMA_COMPAT mode because it avoids non-ECMA API's).
> Norbert's message primarily refers to the second prong, but some
> people seem to think that we should cease the first prong.  We
> shouldn't.  Absent a cease and desist letter, we should keep moving
> along, making contingency plans but otherwise not letting Microsoft
> scare us.

Yes... the one thing that I want to add to this is that even if we
get a cease and desist letter, none of the work which has gone into
the "first prong" stuff is really lost... it'll probably just have
to be distributed only from ftp servers outside the US, and be
marked "not for use in the US" or something.

Greetings, Norbert.

- -- 
Founder & Steering Committee member of
Free Software Business Strategy Guide   --->
Norbert Bollow, Weidlistr.18, CH-8624 Gruet (near Zurich, Switzerland)
Tel +41 1 972 20 59        Fax +41 1 972 20 69
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