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OSDL Stands by Linux

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Linux

Martin Taylor, Microsoft Corp.'s general manager of platform strategy, recently approached Open Source Development Labs Inc., in Beaverton, Ore., to consider ways in which the two could conduct a joint research project to do some facts-based analysis of Linux and Windows. OSDL CEO Stuart Cohen talked to eWEEK Senior Editor Peter Galli about OSDL's future relationship with Microsoft and why he rejected the proposal out of hand.

Do you believe a campaign similar to Microsoft's Get the Facts is necessary and would be beneficial for the Linux community?

A: I told Martin [Taylor] that I was happy to work together with him on some things but that I was not sure a research paper was the best thing to go and work on.

I told him that what would happen is that we'll invest in a 100-page report, 99.9 percent of which will be great for Linux and the acceleration of open-source software, etc., and there may be one page or just one line that will talk about something negative, something critical, something that needs improvement, and [Microsoft] will then run a $100 million advertising campaign around a single sentence from one page of a 100-page document and will ignore the other 99 pages.

I would, then, forever be involved in trying to explain our involvement in such a shenanigan, and that's the part I can't have. So I told him that while I was happy to go and work with Microsoft on something, I can't let [Microsoft] run full-page ads in newspapers across the world for months on end around just one sentence of a 100-page document.

What was Taylor's response to that?

Full Interview.

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