Thursday, April 08, 2004

Is WiX a trick?

MS Open-Source Move is Straight from Playbook "Looking more closely, WiX enables developers to translate programs from Windows Installer Databases (.msi/.msm) formats to a text-based, XML-file format. XML is an open standard, but to work with MSI/MSM, those XML files have a very specific format. Now, what company has already sought patent protection for specific expressions of XML code? The answer is, of course, Microsoft, with its Office XML formats.

Has Microsoft done this with WiX's XML formats yet? I don't know. But if the pros from Redmond haven't yet, they will. They did it for Office XML document formats; they'll do it for this. Thus, Microsoft's open-source code will work only on Microsoft-proprietary XML to produce Microsoft-proprietary installation programs. With open source like this, who needs proprietary programs?"

"Now, while it may look like Microsoft is doing something new, or perhaps even something helpful to the open-source community, it's not. What Microsoft is really doing is putting more of the Halloween memo's plans into action. Why shouldn't it? The Halloween plans are just an elaboration of Microsoft's time-tested embrace-and-extend technique The only embrace Microsoft is really giving the open-source community is a stranglehold. "
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