Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Something Rotten in the State of Denmark

Filed under
Microsoft

It may be located at the perimeter of the European Union, but nevertheless the fairy-tale Kingdom of Denmark has become Bill Gates’ beachhead and stronghold in his ongoing trouble with the EU Commission. Last year The Italian commissioner responsible for competition, Signore Mario Monti, slapped Microsoft for it’s monopolistic conduct and fined the software behemoth a stunning 497m euros ($613m; £331m) for abusing its dominant market position and also insisted Microsoft must reveal secrets of its Windows software [to competing developers]. Furthermore, Microsoft was ordered to release a version of Windows without it’s Media Player. Harsh conditions, don’t you think ? - Well, read on :

Microsoft appealed, but the European Court of First Instance, presided by the Danish judge, Mr. Bo Vesterdorf, rejected the appeal. However, a final sentence isn’t expected until 2010, at best.

Meanwhile Microsoft has deposited the money in it’s own bank account and released a “reduced” Windows that nobody, of course, wants to license [due primarily to the fact that it costs the same as the normal version]. But it hasn’t revealed any useful code to make Windows more cooperative with other types of competing software [and what it has released is under license terms that are unacceptable to it’s biggest competitor]. And it probably never will.

So now, Microsoft has plenty of time to further strengthen its monopoly in Europe, and it doesn’t waste it. A few examples :
The EU Commission wants to enforce the patentability of software, US-style. This severely reduces European companies, which typically are small or medium-sized, in their ability to compete with large, multinational corporations, like Microsoft. Naturally, a lot of those companies as well as nation-states like Poland, Germany, Portugal, the Netherlands and - lastly - Denmark objected and demanded a complete re-write of the Software Directive to be sent back to the European Parliament for re-consideration.

Denmark objected ? - Well, not really. Although the Danish Parliament obliged it’s Secretary of Trade, Mr. Bendt Bendtsen, to reject the Directive in the Council of Ministers, he only did so reluctantly, to put it mildly. (A transcript of his pathetic performance is here, and you can hear Mr. Bendtsen humiliate himself and his country here).

Normally, a minister who ignores his parliament would be fired immediately. Not so this time. The Directive on Software Patents stands and so does Mr. Bendtsen. The noble art of corruption is by no means strange to the EU, but so far Denmark has been - well, relatively - free of it. Let’s delve a little deeper to see if there’s something rotten in the state of Denmark :

Full Article.

More in Tux Machines

CoreOS Releases Building Block For Distributed Systems

Hyperscale Linux operating system specialist CoreOS said it is releasing its latest open source component for sharing and managing configuration data and other functions used in distributed systems. San Francisco-based CoreOS announced its first stable release of etcd, or “etc distributed,” an open-source distributed key value store that provides the backbone of CoreOS clusters and the etcd clients that run on each machine in a cluster. “Our goal with etcd has been to make building and using distributed systems easier,” CoreOS CTO Brandon Philips said Wednesday (January 28) in announcing the release. Read more

The 5 best open source email clients for Linux

Windows users have Outlook; Mac users have Mail. What options are there for Linux users? As it turns out, Linux land is rich with email clients. I have chosen five of the best, fully open source email clients (with two exceptions) for Linux users. Each has its pros and cons, and which email client is best for you is heavily dependent upon your needs. Read more

LibreOffice 4.4 Released With Major UI Revamp

A new version of open-source office suite LibreOffice is now available for download and the hands behind it are calling it ‘the most beautiful’ release ever. Jan Holesovsky, leader of the LibreOffice design team, says “LibreOffice 4.4 has got a lot of UX and design love, and in my opinion is the most beautiful ever.” The productivity suite, which was spun out of the slow moving OpenOffice project back in 2010, has certainly upped its game in the design department over the past few years, with each release of the 4.x series adding finesse. Read more

Android shipments in 2014 exceed 1 billion for first time

Google's Android mobile operating system has reached a major milestone. For the first time ever, worldwide shipments of smartphones packing Android exceeded 1 billion units in 2014, a significant gain from the 780.8 million units that shipped around the world in 2013, researcher Strategy Analytics announced Thursday. Android dwarfed its second-place competitor, Apple's iOS, which mustered 192.7 million worldwide shipments in 2014. Read more