In my RSS hunt & aggregate daily routine, I stumbled upon an article that initially made me groan. It did so as I thought to myself "here we go, another Proprietary vs Open Source debate, the never goes anywhere" and I was hoping that it for once left Microsoft out of the discussion heh.
Well I'm actually glad in many respects I read this as Miguel de Icaza has set the record straight around the codec license issues surrounding Silverlight + Linux (aka Moonlight).
In the United States and Europe if you want to redistributed this media software (and avoid getting sued) you must have a patent license with MPEGLA/Thompson. In the case of Moonlight, Microsoft has agreed to pay the fees related to distributing the codecs for Linux and taking care of the patent fees. It also happens to come in the form of giving us their tuned code for video decoding, as opposed to using the reference VC-1 implementation (which is known to be quite slow, but is available for download to MPEGLA licensees).
It for me reiterates, we are/can be a positive influence in the overall open source community, but sadly our praise isn't amplified as much. It's a red flag in front of the anti-Microsoft bull, but what the heck, I enjoyed reading Miguel's post and it gave me a warm and fuzzy feeling that I'm glad the company I work for can help move projects like Moonlight forward.
I'm sure there's going to be complaints...
See the article here:
Adobe's Flex and a Curious Definition of "Open" for RIA Platforms