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Microsoft Donates Code To Apache's "Stonehenge" Project

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the but-one-dimensional-villains-are-easier-to-comprehend dept.

Microsoft 184

dp619 writes "Several months after joining the Apache Foundation, Microsoft has made its first code contribution to an Apache project. The project, known as Stonehenge, is made up of companies and developers seeking to test the interoperability of Web standards implementations."Reader Da Massive adds a link to coverage at Computer World.

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Not that big a deal (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26553883)

Early reports were that MS had contributed 13000 lines of code when in actuality MS had only contributed 13 lines of code.

Re:Not that big a deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26553931)

Well, the massive Debian SSL fiasco was because of even smaller amount of rows. ;)

Re:Not that big a deal (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26553963)

Hey guys, Roland Piquepaille hasn't updated his blog in a while. I'm starting to get worried, is he okay?

Re:Not that big a deal (4, Funny)

mikehoskins (177074) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555853)

1: // Code Submission by
2: // Our first "open source" code contribution to this thing called "an Apache project"
3: //
4: //
5: // Copyright (c) 2008-2009 by
6: //
7: //
8: // Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.
9: // Use at your own risk.
10: // Read the EULA. You have been warned!!!
11: // All Rights Reserved
12: System.out.writeln("All your base are belong to us.\n");
13: System.out.writeln("Have a nice day.");

Re:Not that big a deal (1)

Larry Lightbulb (781175) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556427)

But they are v-e-r-y long lines.

MS: Make sure it's feet... not inches (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26553895)

NT

How will this turn out? (5, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 5 years ago | (#26553947)

If only we had some history of technical partnerships with Microsoft to use as a guide.

Re:How will this turn out? (5, Insightful)

davester666 (731373) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554113)

FTA: "The project, known as Stonehenge, is made up of companies and developers seeking to test the interoperability of Web standards implementations"

The first thing I thought of when I read this, is that Microsoft updated the project so it was compatible with IE (not making the project more standards compliant, but that it made IE appear to be standards compliant).

Re:How will this turn out? (2, Interesting)

Anthony_Cargile (1336739) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554557)

Oh, NOW it all makes sense...

Silly me, thinking Billy being gone and Ballmer's comments about OSS interest [slashdot.org] meant Microsoft would start supporting open source without any ultimately evil intentions.

Re:How will this turn out? (4, Insightful)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555747)

The first thing I thought of when I read this, is that Microsoft updated the project so it was compatible with IE (not making the project more standards compliant, but that it made IE appear to be standards compliant).

Close.

The sample app is a .NET application [microsoft.com] that's tied into the Windows Communication Foundation. It's the "Embrace" phase of the plan.

Re:How will this turn out? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554175)

Here's [wikia.com] a good one.

Re:How will this turn out? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26556353)

Only an AC would admit to knowing that movie that well.

Re:How will this turn out? (4, Informative)

Bogtha (906264) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554187)

I know you are kidding, but since they restarted Internet Explorer development, Microsoft have submitted thousands of testcases to the W3C CSS Test Suite, which were welcomed and almost entirely accepted without change.

Re:How will this turn out? (1)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554599)

Because they were delivered with cookies like all packages from the dark side!

Re:How will this turn out? (2, Funny)

nmb3000 (741169) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554663)

Because they were delivered with cookies like all packages from the dark side!

No, no. Not cookies. Cake! [arcanology.com]

Re:How will this turn out? (5, Insightful)

Trails (629752) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554805)

Yup, and I've made this is a point I've made in the past. I personally believe that while MS is generally evil, and Ballmer rates slightly below Dick Cheney on the evil intentions scale (decidedly lower on the actual evil scale due to Ballmer's patented apeish idiocy), Chris Wilson, program manager for IE, is trying to do The Right Thing.

Personally I think he gets away with it only because Ballmer hasn't noticed.

Re:How will this turn out? (4, Insightful)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555011)

Chris Wilson, program manager for IE, is trying to do The Right Thing.

The right thing is to let the truly inter-operable standards - the standards which won't require anybody to depend on somebody's charity - to come into acceptance. What MS has been doing will only contribute to the rise of pseudo-standards - standards whose inter-operability depends on one company's charity. This, in turn, leads to the death of other web-servers because they can't implement these standards in inter-operable ways. After that, MS quits Apache Foundation to be the single player.

Re:How will this turn out? (2, Insightful)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554851)

That's the very point which deserves close attention. If the standard itself was clean, there would be no need to ask Microsoft for help. Think about why nobody other than Microsoft could build the test-cases.

Re:How will this turn out? (4, Funny)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555087)

Im sure Ackbar would have something to say about this situation.

Good luck with that (5, Funny)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26553951)

Embrace - you are here.
Extend
Extinguish

You did it wrong. (4, Insightful)

gcnaddict (841664) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554347)

Embrace - you are here. Extend Extinguish

I do believe "Embrace" was covered when Microsoft joined the Apache foundation. Now that they're actually adding code... that's represented by "Extend."

Re:You did it wrong. (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554395)

Heh, good point.

Re:You did it wrong. (4, Insightful)

pm_rat_poison (1295589) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554669)

Actually, grandparetn's right. Extend is when you offer proprietary extenstions that are not part of the competing product / standard which create interoperability problems for those who do not use the "free" version. This will come later on.

Re:You did it wrong. (2, Insightful)

nschubach (922175) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555565)

Two words: Dot NET.

Mark my words. .NET extensions are on their way placing Microsoft in the hot-seat of Web development technology standards. They integrate .NET into the most widely used Web Server software on the Internet and then Introduce Windows .NET "Cloud." It releases as the only fully compatible Web-OS that works with this server launching it into a premium spot.

Re:Good luck with that (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554519)

  • Fanboyism
  • Hatred <- YOU ARE HERE
  • Bunny Suicides

Re:Good luck with that (4, Funny)

Khuffie (818093) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554701)

Hopefully at at least get a new set of bunny suicides [jimmyr.com] out of it

Other notable contribution (5, Informative)

wawannem (591061) | more than 5 years ago | (#26553959)

Although it is nice to see code donated, they made a much bigger contribution earlier allowing all apache committers access to MSDN. This is full d/l access to all of their products for testing, etc.

Re:Other notable contribution (0)

shaitand (626655) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554025)

Allowing accessed to the products for testing, development, and improving interoperability improves the value of Microsoft's products.

That isn't a gift, its an invitation to give Microsoft something for nothing.

Re:Other notable contribution (4, Insightful)

Clover_Kicker (20761) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554073)

But it makes Apache better too.

Sometimes it is possible for everyone to win.

Re:Other notable contribution (1)

shaitand (626655) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554227)

'But it makes Apache better too.'

In what way?

Re:Other notable contribution (4, Interesting)

batkiwi (137781) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554733)

It allows the apache developers to do compatability testing on MS os's without having to go to the store and buy a copy of each OS for each developer.

Re:Other notable contribution (0, Offtopic)

peragrin (659227) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554883)

shh because of the MSFT tax going to the store to buy a copy of the windows is a lot easier as it comes with most computers standard.

Re:Other notable contribution (1)

dangitman (862676) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556261)

You're going to buy a computer for every version of Windows you want to test? Perhaps you do not understand the textual material you were responding to.

Re:Other notable contribution (0, Troll)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554809)

Sometimes it is possible for only 2 people to win.

and all others to die.

Re:Other notable contribution (4, Insightful)

wawannem (591061) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554099)

I guess that's one way to look at it, but IMO, as one of the struts developers, I was happy to get easy access to copies of their OS so that I can virtualize them and test across browsers, etc. You can say it improves their product, but I say it improves mine... TOE-MAY-TOE / TOE-MAH-TOE however you want to look at it, I appreciated it.

Re:Other notable contribution (1, Funny)

shaitand (626655) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554271)

You'd do better on a bittorrent search engine than MSDN in that case. You will find handy copies that use the same disc to install various 'editions' of the operating systems as well. Less hassles and copy protections. Good stuff for testing and development. ;)

Re:Other notable contribution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554393)

Its also piracy that way and arguably immoral. By giving people free access, microsoft is helping the community make software work better for the community by giving them access.

While you might think this is better for microsoft, it isn't. In the end MS doesn't have any need to ensure your software works on all their OSes, YOU do. Because no matter what anyone says Windows has a larger distribution because they do it better, which means if you want a slice of the pie by getting your programs into their customers' PCs, you need their help not the other way around.

Face it, if Microsoft was as crappy as everyone always complains about they wouldn't be a globe spanning corporation that has products sitting in some way in almost every modern home.

Re:Other notable contribution (1, Insightful)

gyrogeerloose (849181) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554855)

Windows has a larger distribution because they do it better

No, Windows has a larger distribution because of unethical and often illegal business practices.

Face it, if Microsoft was as crappy as everyone always complains about they wouldn't be a globe spanning corporation

See above, Re: unethical and illegal business practices.

Nice try Mr. Ballmer.

Re:Other notable contribution (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555131)

Actually in the server market, microsoft DO need you, and dear god theyll do anything for that extra install.

Re:Other notable contribution (2, Insightful)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554445)

I see the value in what they provided. But is it the same value as contributing code?

One of the things I'm looking for is proof that Microsoft is changing from their past. Providing easier access to their products doesn't really do it. Providing code does as would open licensing of their patents.

Re:Other notable contribution (2, Insightful)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556405)

I honestly can't fault Microsoft for not open-licensing their patents. They do that, they lose their own weapons in what is basically a corporate cold war of patents.

Either everyone is going to open-license their patents, or nobody will.

Re:Other notable contribution (3, Funny)

msimm (580077) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554383)

How much did that cost them?

Re:Other notable contribution (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554559)

How much did that cost them?

Microsoft, or the apache committers?

Re:Other notable contribution (4, Insightful)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554611)

Their immortal souls...the usual.

Re:Other notable contribution (1)

msimm (580077) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556173)

Oh how I wish I had points tonight. I've been SOO one-up'ed. :-)

Re:Other notable contribution (1)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554893)

Contributing to ONE among a bunch of competitors is not the same as defining the standard cleanly in the first place.

Re:Other notable contribution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26556249)

Right. Pollute the developer pool. /.'ers love to make the Dark Side analogies and jokes, but Microsoft is, truly, fighting for its corporate life. It's amazing some people still don't realize what they're up to. My colleague is right, America does have a memory hole.

In the immortal words of Admiral Ackbar (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554007)

IT'S A TRAP!

To all you Microsoft fanboys: you get what pay for. Microsoft has EARNED every single bit of suspicion, distrust, and scorn heaped upon it.

Re:In the immortal words of Admiral Ackbar (0, Troll)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554735)

To all you Microsoft fanboys: you get what pay for. Microsoft has EARNED every single bit of suspicion, distrust, and scorn heaped upon it.

I am inclined to say to Hell with Microsoft, for their offensive behaivior they should be BANNED from contributing and access to Open Source. Since when have they gained the moral right to contribute? Certainly licenseing should bar them from Open Source using under any conditions.

Re:In the immortal words of Admiral Ackbar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26555243)

feck off, moron. They never needed any "moral right". You don't have the moral right to talk about the issue. And yes, I'm an anonymous coward!

Re:In the immortal words of Admiral Ackbar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554867)

you get what pay for.

and OSS is free.

Obligatory Spinal Tap joke (4, Funny)

ciaohound (118419) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554107)

Microsoft submitted the code on a napkin and specified inches instead of feet.

Donation? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554125)

So that's what they're calling a trojan horse these days...

Re:Donation? (1)

Anthony_Cargile (1336739) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554609)

No, that would be what they call backdoors these days. Trojans come after the fact.

Interoperability? (1)

ruphus13 (890164) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554139)

Choosing to contribute sample code here is definitely interesting here, given that the Stonehenge project is meant to promote interoperability between Web service standards. First Microsoft contributes money, and now they contribute sample code to promote interoperability (between standards and platforms)! Wonders never cease!

Re:Interoperability? (1)

HiThere (15173) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554475)

It's interesting. At this rate in 20 or 30 years I may take them seriously. If they don't do something else sinister in the mean time.

One think that might cause me to think less favorably if it happens in the meanwhile is another EULA trap. (I *did* say another. I've counted every EULA since and including the MSWindows2000 as a trap. To be fair that should just be every one that I've read, which is only a small percentage of them.)

Numerous factual errors in article and summary (5, Informative)

thehossman (198379) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554155)

"Several months after joining the Apache Foundation, Microsoft has made its first code contribution to an Apache project."

Corporations can not join the Apache Software Foundation (ASF). Microsoft became a "sponsor" of the ASF last summer, but only individual people can join the ASF.

This is also not the first time Microsoft has contributed code to an Apache project, pulling one quick example out of google...

http://port25.technet.com/archive/2008/10/14/microsoft-s-powerset-team-resumes-hbase-contributions.aspx [technet.com]

Re:Numerous factual errors in article and summary (1)

Fluffy_Kitten (911430) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555615)

In a legal context, a corporation is an individual.

Re:Numerous factual errors in article and summary (1)

thehossman (198379) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555887)

I concede that the bylaws of the ASF [apache.org] state "To be eligible for membership, a person or entity must be nominated by a current member..." however as a matter of practice the current membership of the ASF consists solely of people, and to the best of my knowledge no company/organization has ever been a member (or even been nominated to be a member)

It doesn't change anything about my underlying point: Microsoft did not join the ASF, and it is not Microsofts first code contribution to an ASF project.

I don't get it... (3, Insightful)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554205)

This is an open source project about web standards.

If Microsoft really cares about these things, why have they continued to hack on Trident, which has been so far behind in both of those areas? Why not just adopt Gecko or Webkit as the IE/Windows rendering engine?

As it is, they've consistently shunned open standards, including the Web. Only recently have they been starting to fix IE to follow web standards, and it really seems like they're doing the bare minimum they have to do to claim they're making an effort.

Maybe that's what this is, too? Good press for them, while at the same time, they're doing more to undermine web standards with things like Silverlight than they have ever done to support them?

Re:I don't get it... (3, Informative)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554377)

This is an open source project about web standards

Correction: this is an open source project about Web Service standards. If you see the development history of the various existing WS standards, especially the W3C ones, you'll see that Microsoft was a major driving force behind most of them, and many related standards (such as XML Schema), dating back to early 2000s. Then you may want to remember why .NET was called that in the first place (back when all MS products also got that prefix - Windows Server 2003 was originally Windows Server .NET, for example) - it was supposed to be all about web services (which were the Next Great Thing that will Revolutionize Software Development, Proactively Synergize your Paradigms, etc - the stuff which had essentially evolved into SOA today). Of course, Microsoft is still the big player on that market, and "interoperability and standards" has been the talking point for all that time, so nothing new here.

Re:I don't get it... (0, Troll)

HiThere (15173) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554515)

???
I feel like you are re-writing history a bit. MS was, indeed, involved in those standards. That's quite a bit different from saying it supported them. And the MS .NET is about the opposite of supporting standards in ANY area. It's more about breaking standard ways of operating that already exist and are working.

Re:I don't get it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554617)

has been the talking point for all that time,
BWAHHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA

you sir, are an idiot

Re:I don't get it... (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555877)

If you see the development history of the various existing WS standards, especially the W3C ones, you'll see that Microsoft was a major driving force behind most of them, and many related standards...

That also seems odd, especially in light of the Halloween documents. A web service protocol (WebDAV) would've been great for Exchange, but was instead extended/extinguished.

I'm not just talking about web standards. Microsoft has been against any standard they can't control for pretty much their entire lifetime.

Re:I don't get it... (4, Interesting)

b4dc0d3r (1268512) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554647)

It's a lot easier to fix IE than to ditch IE and shoehorn Gecko/Webkit into the IE programming model. If developers miss their COM objects, there will be riots in the street. When I say easier, I mean for a company that would have to throw away a huge investment as well as have many people around who know so much about a product that doesn't behave like that any more. Plus, not invented here.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26555183)

Why not open source it tho? it is free after all and that way it can be fixed instead of having workarounds on your website

Re:I don't get it... (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556073)

It's a lot easier to fix IE than to ditch IE and shoehorn Gecko/Webkit into the IE programming model.

Except that it's already been done, to an extent -- Gecko can be embedded in Wine, and used as a browser activex control.

And, current evidence would not tend to suggest that. Consider how many years Microsoft has been at it, and IE is still not fixed. Compare to several browsers which have been built from the ground up since IE6.

When I say easier, I mean for a company that would have to throw away a huge investment

It didn't work out. Oh well. Now would be a very good time to cut your losses.

as well as have many people around who know so much about a product that doesn't behave like that any more.

If you're talking about code, I can't imagine people want to work on IE, considering the alternatives. And there are plenty of open source developers they could hire.

If you're talking about end-users, they won't know, and they won't care. IE9 is going to be strange and different any way they do it. Why not make it strange, different, and actually better?

Plus, not invented here.

Neither was DOS. But if that's the reason, it's a truly petty reason that's costing them quite a lot.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556423)

Except that it's already been done, to an extent -- Gecko can be embedded in Wine, and used as a browser activex control.

Gecko as an actual OCX, however, seems to have fallen by the wayside.

I know that somebody related to Mono (shana, I think?) is working on a .NET-compatible wrapper for Gecko, but I don't know how far along she is.

Re:I don't get it... (4, Insightful)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554743)

Maybe that's what this is, too? Good press for them, while at the same time, they're doing more to undermine web standards with things like Silverlight than they have ever done to support them?

When did Flash become a web standard?

If it is one, what's so bad about competition forcing it to become better or die? Doing Flash programming used to be about as much fun as repeatedly slamming your junk in a car door. Now it's getting better from that perspective and I don't doubt that competition looming from Silverlight is some of why.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555153)

Neither Flash nor Silverlight is a standard. It's just a fight between two evils.

Re:I don't get it... (2, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555365)

Ok, but which one is Alien and which one is Predator?

Re:I don't get it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26555407)

When did Flash become a web standard?

Flash is a web standard in the same way that Windows is a standard OS.

P.S.: Oh lol! CAPTCHA is "accuracy"! Ha ha ha ha ha!

Re:I don't get it... (1)

Dotren (1449427) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555519)

When did Flash become a web standard?

If it is one, what's so bad about competition forcing it to become better or die? Doing Flash programming used to be about as much fun as repeatedly slamming your junk in a car door. Now it's getting better from that perspective and I don't doubt that competition looming from Silverlight is some of why.

Something I've learned about this site... it's only a monopoly and/or evil if it's Microsoft.

Adobe has somehow convinced people that its a good thing that they have little to no competition and that they'd never be an "evil" corporation like Microsoft.

Re:I don't get it... (3, Informative)

markdavis (642305) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555977)

Like BhaKi says below- "a fight between two evils".

Except that Flash:

1) Has been around a lot longer
2) Works on all major browsers (Firefox, IE, Safari, Konqueror, Opera, Seamonkey, etc)
3) Works on all the major operating systems, and natively (MS-Windows, Linux, Mac, Solaris)
4) Is self-contained
5) Has development tools for most platforms

I have no great love of Flash, but at least it works and works on all the machines I need for it to work. I can't say that about Silverlight. And based on MS's history, Silverlight seems very much "isatrap".

I would feel much better about Flash if Adobe would just get over itself and open source the client- they have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Time is ticking... open sourcing it NOW might be their own weapon against Silverlight.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556093)

When did Flash become a web standard?

When did Flash become the only alternative?

We've still got HTML5, SVG, Javascript, etc.

Silverlight could've been cool -- but they built it on .NET, which means it's going to be hard for a lot of people to trust. In any case, it's a plugin, as opposed to an actual, direct improvement to the existing technologies.

And they still haven't got those right. Why not take all of the Silverlight developers, and have them work on maybe finally getting CSS right in IE?

Re:I don't get it... (1)

McBeer (714119) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554781)

If Microsoft really cares about these things, why have they continued to hack on Trident, which has been so far behind in both of those areas? Why not just adopt Gecko or Webkit as the IE/Windows rendering engine?

I sometimes wonder this myself. I think it comes down to two things: 1) They tightly couple IE as an activex control into a great many things. This would not be permissible under the GPL, so Gecko is right out. I think that would still be fine under lgpl/WebKit though. 2) If they start replacing each component of the windows suite with indiviudal apps that perform better, they would have a reduced set of things they were selling as an OS and have a harder time justifying the prices they charge.

they're doing more to undermine web standards with things like Silverlight

I'd double check that. Silverlight is much more open then its only real competitor (flash). Heck, MSFT put in a good amount of work just this week to help get video streaming in moonlight working for the inauguration. Silverlight is much easier to develop in then Flash as an added bonus.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555671)

Silverlight is much easier to develop in then Flash as an added bonus.

That's a matter of opinion if I ever saw one.

Re:I don't get it... (3, Insightful)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554821)

they're doing more to undermine web standards with things like Silverlight than they have ever done to support them?

Oh, you mean giving competition the alternative to Silverlight, the extremely web-standards savvy and committed Adobe/Macromedia Shockwave/Flash? That doesn't even have a really XHTML standardized way of being embedded yet? link to w3's entry on embedding flash [w3.org]

I guess I should stop using Apache. It's funded by MS :) On the other hand, I refuse to take the "karma" approach to companies, and will praise MS on their good actions and complain about their bad actions. I will not complain about their good actions because I am still sore from their bad ones...

Re:I don't get it... (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554843)

The reasons they dont abandon MSHTML/Trident and use gecko or webkit include:
Licensing (webkit is LGPL, gecko is GPL/LGPL/MPL) and Microsoft doesn't want to use LGPL software in their OS for obvious reasons.
Code ownership (Microsoft has no way to be 100% sure that the code in there is written by the people who claim to have written it and with Microsoft and Windows being such a HUGE target, its a risk Microsoft cant afford to take no matter how small it is)
Application Compatibility (Many apps use and embed MSHTML/Trident including htmlhelp, MSDN library, the GameSpy Arcade frontend, at least one PC game I have and who knows how many more. Microsoft needs to maintain MSHTML/Trident for the benefit of these apps so that they keep running and aren't exposed to security flaws just because MS isn't fixing MSHTML anymore)
Web Compatibility (Many web pages, especially on corporate intranets wont run in anything other than IE and Microsoft needs to maintain MSHTML/Trident so that those pages continue to work)
Security (No current webkit or gecko browser supports any kind of network-wide lock down in the way that IE does with group policy, nor do these other browsers support any kind of "protected mode" ala IE7)

Basically its just not possible to replace MSHTML/Trident with gecko or webkit and not break a whole bunch of stuff that is VERY important to Microsoft customers.

Re:I don't get it... (4, Insightful)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556153)

Microsoft doesn't want to use LGPL software in their OS for obvious reasons.

Sorry, it's not obvious. Were it GPL, you'd have a point.

Consider that Apple uses Webkit in Safari, which is shipped with OS X. Why is that not a problem for them?

Microsoft has no way to be 100% sure that the code in there is written by the people who claim to have written it

Apple has already taken that risk. No one has come forward. The iPhone is getting pretty huge, and it has Webkit on it.

Google has also taken that risk. It's on Android. It's in Chrome.

Many apps use and embed MSHTML/Trident including htmlhelp, MSDN library, the GameSpy Arcade frontend...

So include Trident as a legacy version. Apps which support the newer library can use it.

But when Wine uses Gecko, these same applications don't seem to have any problems.

Many web pages, especially on corporate intranets wont run in anything other than IE

Those pages are abortions. No new pages like that should be built.

For the existing ones, they don't necessarily work with IE7, and IE8 is about to be released (or is it out already?), so I think making a newer, incompatible version wouldn't be such a tragedy.

nor do these other browsers support any kind of "protected mode" ala IE7

...except Chrome, which is splitting it out per-process.

What's more, given the environments we've seen these run on, I doubt there would be any real problem doing that. It's a rendering engine -- why should it care what user it runs as? Everything that needs to run outside the sandbox is chrome anyway, and could be carried over.

Basically its just not possible to replace MSHTML/Trident with gecko or webkit and not break a whole bunch of stuff that is VERY important to Microsoft customers.

You mean, like they did with Vista and UAC? Microsoft isn't exactly known for backwards compatibility.

At the very least, they could start shipping other browsers as the default -- and this takes almost no effort. People for whom the above matters can use IE.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555097)

If Microsoft really cares about these things, why have they continued to hack on Trident, which has been so far behind in both of those areas? Why not just adopt Gecko or Webkit as the IE/Windows rendering engine?

NIH?

Nothing to lose, only to win for Microsoft (3, Interesting)

postmortem (906676) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554229)

Interoperability simply means that Microsoft stuff that was not used (or possible to use) with OSS projects, will be used now. Which leads to more sales.

Microsoft still charges for its products, it just has opened doors to more customers.

Re:Nothing to lose, only to win for Microsoft (4, Funny)

garett_spencley (193892) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554661)

"News Flash: A business acted last night in a move that is expected to increase it's revenue. A spokesperson for the business did not comment on whether or not this move is expected to directly, or indirectly increase revenue. She only told us that it is a general policy of the company to act on behalf of the financial interests of it's share holders and employees".

*World Gasps In Shock*

so, is it safe? (0, Troll)

Adult film producer (866485) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554249)

taking microsoft contributions to an opensource project.. whats to say that filthy assholes at microsoft won't claim some sort of protected patented IP intellectual secrets in a few years ? Trust microsoft to do the right thing? You would have to be crazy... you can be their lawyers are scheming right now.

Re:so, is it safe? (3, Interesting)

HiThere (15173) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554545)

If the company itself, i.e. the patent holder, donates the code, then it is probably safe. I'm not in a position to judge how useful it might be. But MS has long taken the position that it supports the BSD license, and other similar licenses that allow it to take code contributed by others, close it, modify it, and sell the closed & modified version under a new name.

I can't say that I know that they actually support such projects, but that's been their official position for over a decade.

Re:so, is it safe? (1)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555623)

As long as Apache's added the proper stipulations, then they're fine. Plus, in a patent infringement suit, being able to point to Microsoft giving them the implementation really hurts Microsoft's case.

This story's tags are killing me (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554409)

one of them as of this moment is "masturbation" ...

Re:This story's tags are killing me (2, Informative)

greg1104 (461138) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554573)

I'm surprised it's not tagged "itsatrap" yet.

Re:This story's tags are killing me (1)

markdavis (642305) | more than 5 years ago | (#26556033)

The night is young...OK, OK.... I just did. But, if they can hold the course for 8 or maybe 10 years like this, I will be willing to consider partial forgiveness their some of their numerous past evil doings and resend the "isatrap" on this one.

Besides, this is much less of "isatrap" than Silverlight.

What a choice for the name (5, Funny)

icejai (214906) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554423)

Project Stonehenge!

Abstract:
Nobody will know why something so large and simple was created, what it's good for, how it's supposed to be used. It will face complete abandonment and isolation, only to be admired and appreciated by a handful of people once a year.

I keed I keed!

Re:What a choice for the name (1)

rkanodia (211354) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554725)

I guess you'd have to ask the creators why they chose it. Trouble is, no one knows who they were, or what they were doing.

fro5t pi5t (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26554471)

Beware of the Redmond! (0)

wilsoniya (902930) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554615)

I hope Microsoft doesn't donate any smallpox infected code to the Apache peoples.

Look at the big picture (4, Insightful)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#26554731)

1. Create protocols/formats/standards/specifications which are not inherently inter-operable. (Remember how buggy, incomplete and inaccurate OOXML spec was. Remember how Windows-specific the .NET and Silverlight specs are.)

2. Pick one of your competitors, give him (and him alone, not the whole public) code and/or patent-freedoms so that he can make an inter-operable software. (Remember Novell OO.Org plugins, Mono and Moonlight.)

3. Claim that the standard itself is clean and inter-operable by showing the existence of the above competitor's inter-operable implementation as "proof". In making this claim, take advantage of the fact that most people, organizations and courts make the mistake of not seeing any difference between the original definition of an inter-operable standard - "A standard whose specification is public, true to reference implementation and complete so that any developer can make a fully inter-operable implementation without paying any fees or signing any license agreements" and the twisted definition given by Microsoft - "A standard that has at-least one competing implementation besides the reference implementation".

4. As the claim gradually gets accepted, the "standard" becomes a de-facto standard and more people and government will adopt it. This leads to the death of 1) other standards and 2) other independent implementations of the same standard. (because the top implementations are not inter-operable with them)

5. Now you and your friendly competitor are the only ones in the business. After everyone forgets history, pull the plug and let your competitor die.

Re:Look at the big picture (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555209)

i believe ackbar was more to the point, but wholeheartedly agree with the entirety of your post.

Just too much. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26555051)

In this thread, I sense the fury of a thousand basements rising up! This time, Microsoft shall know the true meaning of fear!

It's a decent addition (3, Funny)

dangitman (862676) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555107)

The code that Microsoft contributed was the Happy Slider. It should be set to maximum if you really want your server to sing.

Don't trust 'em . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26555111)

You only have to look at who is leading M$ to know that they can't be trusted. By all means, build a completely standards based internet, but leave M$ twisting in the wind while you do it.

Great... (3, Funny)

R3d Jack (1107235) | more than 5 years ago | (#26555969)

Who's going to debug that mess?
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