This clears nothing up
Posted Nov 28, 2006 19:51 UTC (Tue) by piman
In reply to: This clears nothing up
Parent article: Novell's IRC session on the Microsoft deal
Here's how I understand the question (and it's one I also have): You say the money is exchanging hands for patent licenses (convenants, whatever) for customers. At the same time, you say you are unaware of any patents that Novell is infringing on. So there are two possible ways to consider this:
1) Novell is not aware of any patents they are infringing on, but believe they are infringing on some (this is a reasonable belief given how many software patents there are). This implies that they also believe MS could theoretically sue their customers, and the protection is important.
2) Novell is not aware of any patents they are infringing on, and do not believe they are infringing on any. In this case, you believe MS is paying you for nothing. You say "It doesn't matter if the allegations from MSFT are true or not" but MS certainly believes it, and believes it enough to pay you millions of dollars. Alternately, MS is irrational, and just likes throwing money at you.
This means there are three possible outcomes. First, Novell is waffling and believes they did actually purchase real protection for their customers, but doesn't want to admit it to the people who they didn't purchase it for. Second, Novell and Microsoft have very different opinions about the efficacy of the contract they have agreed to, MS believing it means something and Novell believing it doesn't. Third, Novell is doing business with a company that is completely irrational.
None of these options reflect very well on Novell. So please, explain what exactly Novell is paying for, and why.
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