IBM, meanwhile, seems to be all cozy with Novell and its argument that Novell, not SCO, is the real owner of Unix. This looks like one of those "my enemys enemy is my friend" situations, except that IBM and Novell were sorta close before the pleadings started to fly. I hope theyre happy together.And such a win would make customers unlikely to ever buy anything ever again that doesnt have a completely clean title. Maybe theres money to be made in the future by ensuring companiessuch as through title insurancethat the software they buy isnt infringing on someone elses intellectual property. Meanwhile, Id feel better about this if SCO were only willing towell, I am now imagining Clara Peller from the old hamburger commercial demanding to know, "Wheres the beef?" In SCOs case, if there is any beef, the company isnt willing to produce it. If there is infringing code in Linux, SCO needs to show it to us. The collective opinion of people I know who are following the case is that SCO doesnt have one. As someone who owns and creates intellectual property, I am all for protecting it. I was, for example, very much in favor of putting the Napster founders in jail. At the same time, I hate people who abuse the system. And the ownership of Unix is so murkythank AT&T for thisthat it opens the door to abusive slime such as SCO to try to hold up an entire industry for ransom. I dont think it will succeed, but I really wish it would just dematerialize for the benefit of all humankind. Check out eWEEK.coms Linux & Open Source Center at http://linux.eweek.com for the latest open-source news, reviews and analysis.
This whole mess would be little more than an entertaining final chapter of the breakup of AT&T, except that should SCO win, its likely to demand tribute from the Linux community at a level that could make Linux, at least as we know it, go away.