I am not hiding the fact that Red Hat funds my work on some Free Software projects, nor the fact that as GNU Classpath maintainer and as one of the IcedTea maintainers I have some knowledge and interest in this issue. And I have even contributed articles on both the projects I work on in my free time and on company time to LWN. So none of this should really come as a surprise for those we read LWN (comments) regularly.
LWN's coverage of the issues and companies involved seem fact based. I do like reading them. But it is indeed a fact that although Red Hat as a company is based on and guided by Free Software principles, trying to lead, be good community participants and take a very strong anti software patent stance, they do operate in the current economic reality and have to pick causes that interest their customers and provides a stable income.
Pushing OIN to not just cover the GNU Java implementation, but also other ones seems like a good idea. For IcedTea/OpenJDK we have a shot since it could be seen as the successor release of the gcj/libgcj implementation since it has overlap with the community and maintainers of the GNU Java projects and most ION members now rely on it now as their default free java implementation in preference to the GNU Java one that was used for running other OIN components like Apache Ant, Derby, Tomcat and Eclipse. For Dalvik it seems a bit harder since OIN seems very focussed on the free software GNU/Linux server side. But IMHO we should certainly try to get the scope of OIN broader. It isn't surprising OIN doesn't help when software not covered by it is attacked, or when companies not part of OIN attack projects. It is certainly only a very small patent-peace. Ultimately the real solution will be abolishment of software patents.
As for the opinions of Florian Mueller I am not sure how trustworthy or helpful they are. His attacks seem somewhat random to me. His reasoning is driven by unknown motives to arrive at some point I must be missing. He is a good politician. See how in the above he was able to turn the discussion from whether there was any factual basis for his smearing to whether or not anybody could confirm some vague email actually exists. An email that doesn't actually support his allegations, all it does is say that someone saw some people talking, so the whole "proof" hangs on assumptions based on hearsay and guilt by association - anybody who ever talks to IBM is bad? I am a little sad that I just don't grok his motives. He can sometimes be right and he can be a good alley if your goals align, but beware if he has other interests http://lwn.net/Articles/148668/. I had hoped to better understand his motives, association, goals and who is funding his current activities. But I am afraid I just don't get it.
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