W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-web-plugins@w3.org > September 2003

Microsoft benefits a lot by loosing (?)

From: Reza Roboubi <reza@requestfinder.com>
Date: Wed, 10 Sep 2003 11:18:46 -0700
Message-ID: <3F5F6B06.3A28E5B6@requestfinder.com>
To: W3C Public Web Plugins List <public-web-plugins@w3.org>

Hector Santos wrote: 
> If it was anything else, this would be an easy patent claim to refute
> and circumvent.  For example, a NON-WEB BROWSER that offers its own
> proprietary component system such as our Wildcat!  Navigator.

This is exactly what worries me.

The more I read about this patent, the more I think: "why would
Microsoft _want_ to win this case?"  Let us assume for a moment that
this software giant lost, not because it was either stupid, or just
plain incapable, of winning such a silly case.

It seems that they can benefit a _great_ deal by loosing.

If they loose, then some smaller third parties won't be able to
distribute their ActiveX to IE users.  That may harm MS. But most people
don't regularly download (small) third party ActiveX components from
the web anyway.  Downloading untrusted content?  That's the whole
thing you want to avoid while surfing.

The GREAT benefit to MS on the other hand, is FULL control over the
browser market (finally!)  That feels rather cunning, don't you think?
MS has been bombarded by lawsuits from left and right.  Now it's
highly controversial C# must compete with a truly platform independent
Java, running on non-MS OS's.

What better way, than to turn the legal system to it's rescue this
time?  Now MS can go ahead and create it's own FULLY proprietary and
closed IE, with C#, VB, and proprietary MS libraries embedded
inseparably into the heart of IE.  Oh, the "visual display area," that
you rightly pointed out was central to this patent, is NO more: C# and
VB script can directly manipulate the DOM! Just like JavaScript does
today.  And MS RULES the free world.  Use IE or die.

Unless, the W3C mobilizes it's forces, and _standardizes_ JavaScript
into a complete programming language, to be implemented by Mozilla and
other compliant browsers.

If we did that, wouldn't you guys benefit technically? At the same time
of course, W3C will pursue other legal avenues already mentioned here.

Received on Wednesday, 10 September 2003 14:18:56 UTC

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