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Mr. Mueller implies that he'd be happy to see Samsung's products banned, stating, "From a short-term perspective, it would certainly be great if every device maker could steal every original innovator's intellectual property. I'd rather live in a world in which some wireless devices get banned from time time than in a dictatorship with a weak rule of law."  (Source: PDF Devices)
Mr. Mueller says Google giving early Android builds to Verizon may prove wrong-doing

One person certainly wasn't happy about Verizon Communications Inc.'s (VZamicus curiae brief ("friend of the court petition") on behalf of Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd.'s (SEO 005930) in its case against Apple, Inc. (AAPL) -- Florian Mueller.  The FOSS Patents writer fired off a long critical blog/editorial he implies that Verizon may be illegally conspiring with Google, Inc. (GOOG) to support Android at the expense of Apple.

He writes, "I'm sure that Apple will view this move as a self-serving attempt to game the system in Android's and Samsung's favor, as another sign of Verizon being staunchly Android-aligned in exchange for market-distorting favors from Google, and as an attack on the intellectual property-centric business model of Apple and other innovators."

He links to a document he believes supports this bold suggestion of Google and Verizon's conspiring to exchange "market-distorting favors".  He writes that court filings contain "... a document that shows Verizon and Google promised each other unspecified favors, potentially anti-competitive ones since they did not document them in writing."

The document in question comes from Oracle Corp.'s (ORCL) court case against Google and states:
Lead device concept: Give early access to the software to partners who build and distribute devices to our specification (ie, Motorola and Verizon). They get a non-contractual time to market advantage and in return they align to our standard.
In other words Google says that it rewards partners that honor its device specification with early releases of its source code.  This appears no different than Apple's early releases of iOS/OS X to trusted developers, Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) early releases of Windows code to businesses, or countless other examples.  But Mr. Mueller appears convinced that it's actually evidence of a possibly illegal conspiracy.

He goes on to accuse Verizon of intellectual property incompetence for its decision to support Google.  He writes, "I seriously wonder whether Verizon's top-level management is completely incompetent with respect to intellectual property issues and perhaps being a bit irrational, or whether it's just doing all of this in exchange for whatever Google may have promised them."

It's unclear whether Mr. Mueller supports Apple's claims to own exclusive rights to produce minimalist tablet designs.  He does qualify, "I've been highly critical of the German injunctions based on an excessively broad design-related right."

But he goes one to write, "I'd rather live in a world in which some wireless devices get banned from time time than in a dictatorship with a weak rule of law," and, "From a short-term perspective, it would certainly be great if every device maker could steal every original innovator's intellectual property."

Both comments seem to suggest he believes that Samsung stole Apple's iPad design, as Apple claims.  His commentary clearly seems to imply Apple is an "innovator" in his eyes, and Samsung a thief.

Mr. Mueller has drawn a great deal of attention for his strong opinions on the case, even getting quoted in The Wall Street Journal.


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RE: I'm a little confused
By TakinYourPoints on 9/26/2011 10:05:47 AM , Rating: -1
Apple is pretty open on the software side. Webkit was internally developed at Apple and then open sourced, and they continue to update it with enhancements still being rolled into Google Chrome. Same thing with OpenCL, developed by Apple and then open sourced. Enhancements made to both OS X and iOS (which are based off BSD) have been contributed back to the community for years. Advocacy for open HTML5 standards over closed third-party plugins like Flash is another example. A rare example with hardware is the mini-DisplayPort connector, developed by Apple and then made available with no license fees or (unlike USB) usage restrictions. Now it is seen in all new AMD cards as well as Intel's Thunderbolt port.

The reasoning for this is simple: Apple is a hardware company, that's where they make their money. Unlike other companies who's leverage relies on closed-end software, it is in Apple's best interest for cross-platform compatibility and open standards. If the web only worked properly on IE or any other specific but popular piece of software, then they would be in serious trouble in terms of compatibility. That example extends far and wide. It is in Apple's best interest for all software to work on all platforms given the fact that their hardware and OS makes up a relatively small global percentage.


RE: I'm a little confused
By Stratagem on 9/26/2011 10:38:09 AM , Rating: 5
quote:
Webkit was internally developed at Apple and then open sourced...

No, it wasn't. It was created by the KDE project and forked by Apple. They kept the license because they had no choice.

quote:
Same thing with OpenCL, developed by Apple and then open sourced.

OpenCL is an API. It was created to compete with DirectX (DirectCompute) and CUDA, mainly. The "open source" files you refer to are actually just an implementation of FFTs in OpenCL. This is known as example code.

quote:
Apple is a hardware company,

Apple is a marketing company with a focus on electronics and patents :-).


RE: I'm a little confused
By MrAwax on 9/26/2011 11:03:30 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
OpenCL is an API. It was created to compete with DirectX (DirectCompute) and CUDA, mainly.
OpenCL IS CUDA standardized to be independant from NVidia.
It was co-defined in strong relationship with NVidia who was at that time a important provider of GPU to Apple computers.


RE: I'm a little confused
By TakinYourPoints on 9/26/2011 6:16:56 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. OpenCL isn't a closed API made to compete with other closed APIs, it is made to run on a variety of hardware (NVIDIA and ATI) and operating systems (Windows, OS X, Linux, etc etc). CUDA and DirectX are closed and proprietary by definition.

This again points back to the core argument that open software standards are a net benefit to Apple as it gives them relevance and compatibility that they otherwise wouldn't have since they have a small marketshare relative to Windows.


RE: I'm a little confused
By TakinYourPoints on 9/26/11, Rating: 0
RE: I'm a little confused
By TakinYourPoints on 9/26/11, Rating: -1
"Game reviewers fought each other to write the most glowing coverage possible for the powerhouse Sony, MS systems. Reviewers flipped coins to see who would review the Nintendo Wii. The losers got stuck with the job." -- Andy Marken














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