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Firing up the Corporate Forge
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| This is all good stuff. The only thing that
| leaves me perplexed is the fact that all this
| openness is happening inside a company that is
| one of the most vocal and powerful supporters
| of software patents in Europe. That's
| paradoxical because software patents are the
| antithesis of open source and its methodology.
| If SAP gets its way on software patents, it
| will be pointless for others in the company to
| set up software forges, since the legal issues
| surrounding open, collaborative development
| will make that prohibitively complex and
| expensive to police.
SAP: Open Source's Friend or Foe?
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| For example, the European Commission organised seven workgroups looking at
| various aspects of European software policy. One of these was on open source.
| Among the groups taking part in this was the Free Software Foundation Europe,
| and SAP. At the end of their joint report (PDF, HTML), there are a number of
| appendices that represent the particular views of participants. SAP's is by
| far the longest, running to some 17 pages.
| Most of that space is used to bolster the following statements through
| supporting comments of various kinds (mostly links to news items):
| A number of key open source projects depend on the contributions by mixed
| source / hybrid model companies
| Hybrid / mixed source models seem to be a key element of the larger open
| source ecosystem
| Open source development like closed source development has its pros and cons
| It is very difficult to discriminate between open source and non-open source
| vendors any longer
| Open source software is proprietary as well
| Different business models and business interest lead to different positions
| regarding IPR, standardization and interoperability
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