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IBM Adopts Open Patent Policy 91

Andy Updegrove writes to mention a New York Times article about IBM's bold new move to reform patent practices. The nation's largest patent holder will adopt several new policies intended to clear up the veil of secrecy and wall of lawsuits that plague the patent process. From the article: "The policy, being announced today, includes standards like clearly identifying the corporate ownership of patents, to avoid filings that cloak authorship under the name of an individual or dummy company. It also asserts that so-called business methods alone -- broad descriptions of ideas, without technical specifics -- should not be patentable. The move by I.B.M. does carry business risks. Patents typically take three or four years after filing to be approved by the patent office. Companies often try to keep patent applications private for as long as possible, to try to hide their technical intentions from rivals."

Microsoft Port 25 interviews Miguel de Icaza 202

Ben Galliart writes "Microsoft's Port 25 blog, the voice of MS Linux Labs and a spin-off from the MS Channel 9 blog, has an interview with Miguel de Icaza where they discuss the Gnome and Mono projects. It is a nice change of pace to see Microsoft go from attacking Novell and Linux to interviewing a Novell employee about a Linux desktop system. Port 25 has come under some fire since they can not always be trusted. Port 25 has on occasion put out FUD such as claiming Microsoft is doing more to improve security than any other vendor and a security guide attacking Red Hat for not providing security updates for Red Hat v9 despite that Red Hat ended support back in 2004. They have also released a password synchronization daemon for Red Hat, AIX, HPUX and Solaris that must run as root and makes several calls to strcpy() (which violates Microsoft's guidelines for doing secure coding)."

Yahoo! Sells, Advocates DRM-Free Music 244

prostoalex writes "Jessica Simpson's 'A Public Affair' will be sold on Yahoo! Music in MP3 format with no DRM attached. According to Yahoo! Music blog, this is a big deal for the major online music store: 'As you know, we've been publicly trying to convince record labels that they should be selling MP3s for a while now. Our position is simple: DRM doesn't add any value for the artist, label (who are selling DRM-free music every day -- the Compact Disc), or consumer, the only people it adds value to are the technology companies who are interested in locking consumers to a particular technology platform. We've also been saying that DRM has a cost. It's very expensive for companies like Yahoo! to implement. We'd much rather have our engineers building better personalization, recommendations, playlisting applications, community apps, etc, instead of complex provisioning systems which at the end of the day allow you to burn a CD and take the DRM back off, anyway!'"

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