Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Microsoft once made the mistake of broad-brushing Linux as an intellectual property quagmire. It made Microsoft headlines, but few friends: lawyers didn't believe it, customers didn't want to hear it, and competitors dared it to sue.
Years later, Microsoft still hasn't sued, but instead plods away at convincing the world, one patent cross-licensing agreement at a time, that everyone, everywhere owes it money for alleged violations of its IP in Linux.
This week, Microsoft made its boldest move to date, signing yet another patent cross-licensing agreement with Amazon, calling out that this agreement allows Amazon to use Linux. Yes, Amazon sells its Linux-based Kindle device, but the agreement also covers Amazon's use of Linux (presumably for the Amazon.com service, EC2, etc.), representing, as ZDNet's Adrian Kingsley-Hughes writes, "the clearest indication so far from Microsoft that if you use Linux-based servers...you ow[e] them money."
If Microsoft has such an ironclad case in this matter, there's just one thing to do: