Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
It's not every day that a Microsoft executive as highly placed as senior vice president, corporate secretary and general counsel Brad Smith shows up at an open source conference, but he made an appearance at the Open Source Business Conference in San Francisco this week. I enjoyed the title of InfoWorld's summary of his visit: Microsot's Brad Smith Tries to Make Nice with Open Source Community.
Making nice was probably part of his motivation, but there's more to it than that. As Mike noted, Microsoft made some significant announcements this week about helping to develop the Apache POI project. Especially after being slapped with a huge fine from the EU, Microsoft needs to take concrete steps to work more closely with the open source community. Also, what people keep missing is how Microsoft's proposed Yahoo deal would force it to embrace open source.
Microsoft has shown no signs of backing down on its proposed Yahoo deal, and all signs point to it attempting to acquire Yahoo in hostile fashion.