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Lies, damn lies, and statistics

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I don't normally head over to Groklaw, but I did recently based on some other links and came across an article about a study conducted by Microsoft on how developers don't want the GLP, version 3, to "police patents." If you dig a little deeper into the study, the following facts about the study are exposed:

1. It was conducted by email.

2. 354 emails were sent out between Feb 28 and April 4 2007.

3. 332 reached their destination.

4. 34, or slightly more than 10%, responded.

Now, PJ chose a particularly inflammatory (some might even go so far as to say trolling) title: "Only 11% of OS Targeted Programmers Willing to Help MS-Funded Study." And that's because Microsoft did indeed fund yet another study seeking to bolster their position with regards to the GPLv3. I don't see it quite that way. I see that only 10% of the targeted group (according to my simple math skills) bothered to respond (frankly, for reasons unknown). And those 34 bear the heavy responsibility of representing the rest of us who either refused to respond or who were never even contacted. Great responsibility indeed.

More Here.

We can trust Novell and Microsoft

After all, they used similar tricks to show us using a a survey that customers 'loved' the deal. The ethics at Novell are on par with Microsoft's and SCO's.

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