Microsoft's concept of openness is not the same as ours

The concept of open

There are words that can have different meanings depending on who uses them. A few years ago in a Disney Channel series the protagonists installed a virus for using "open source software." This was not a campaign orchestrated by proprietary software companies. The writers mistook open source for freeware and thought they were talking about any program available for free on the Internet.

I remembered this, because Satya Nadella, the president of Microsoft just told him to the Wall Street Journal that Windows 11 claims to be the center of "an open technology ecosystem." Should we understand that anyone will be able to review, modify or redistribute the code. No not at all.

Microsoft's open concept

In a video conference report with the Wall Street Journal, Nadella said that while Google (Chrome OS and Android) and Apple drag users to increasingly closed platforms, Windows bets on users who want freedom to decide what they use, pretending to be the most open ecosystem that exists (In case you're wondering, he said it without laughing.)

For Nadella, an open ecosystem is one that can interact with another, for example connecting the phone to the computer using the latter to connect with other phones or computers. It also talks about Windows' ability to run various types of applications, including:

  • Native applications.
  • Progressive web applications.
  • Android applications.

When the Wall Street Journal reporter asks him about the differences between the new Windows model and Apple's, Nadella replies thate is the user's ability to choose other app stores. He also points out that although Windows 11 will have its own collaborative platform (Microsoft Teams) integrated, it will in no way block competitors such as Zoom or Slack.

Our open concept

For some reason, the first thing I thought when I saw the 7 minutes of the report is that since they are so open to other platforms, they might as well enable support for Ext4. It would be great to be able to see the files on the Linux home partition in Windows Explorer and not have to save them to the cloud. Yes, I know there are programs. But, since they are going to open up to other platforms, they could well inhabit it natively.

Moreover, beyond the possibility of installing Android applications (None other than from the store Amazon, a company whose monopolistic practices are being questioned) there is nothing new, except the expansion of the application formats that can be uploaded to the official store (From which almost nobody downloaded anything). One could already install Zoom or Google Meet and disable Skype (In the future replaced by Teams) An opening sample would be to let you choose which browser, video conferencing client, cloud storage service or app store to use during installation).

This whole opening up thing is to escape scrutiny from regulators who have already set their sights on Apple, Google and Amazon.

Nor is the obligation to have a TPM chip that is not usually included in most motherboards a good sign of "openness".. According to our survey, its price on the buying portals shows a tendency to rise.

Let us remember that according to the Open Source Initiative, the concept of open applied to software must meet the following requirements:

  • You cannot put any kind of restrictions on free distribution. One of the functions of the damn TPM chip is to prevent piracy.
  • The source code must be accessible.
  • The license must allow modifications and derivative works. Ever dreamed of making your own Windows? Well, they can't.
  • No person can be prevented from using the program for any reason. For example, for living in Cuba or not paying the license.
  • The right to use a program cannot be subject to use in conjunction with other programs or a specific technology. Like a TPM chip for example?

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  1.   Bilbo said

    At my old company (a Microsoft product reseller consultancy) they installed Microsoft Teams and Sharepoint. Despite being based on open standards and web technologies, this monster did not even allow us to share a text file without doing a thousand and one tricks. And of course, posting something in HTML or Markdown was mission impossible. The ecosystem is designed to be able to create content only with proprietary Microsoft tools, all of them very rudimentary and basic (with the exception of Excel).
    It would be something anecdotal but because of the frustration of the users, the hours lost, the loss of productivity, how difficult it was to find or share something properly (the Sharepoint search engine is a toy, ...). I estimate that the use of closed tools (both from Microsoft and IBM, SAP,…) costs the West around 500.000 million a year in lost productivity. Then we complain when China goes over us and beats us in everything, but we have designed an economic system that hurts 99% of the population to save the benefits of the remaining 1%. Pure theater that is dismantled with each passing day.

  2.   Liam taylor said

    The LinuxAdictos (or in other words "fanboys"), are trying to sell smoke at all costs with the TPM.

    I have a laptop that I bought in 2018 for exactly $ 499 and it comes with UEFI, Secure Boot, and TPM support.
    I don't know what they want to play with, but the TPM has been around for years.
    Check the BIOS, they probably have it.

    I highly doubt that Microsoft would risk asking for a requirement that (according to haters) the "99% do not meet."

    I DO NOT USE WINDOWS, but let's talk reality.
    Linux-like media trying to sell smoke to discredit Windows when will they stop fighting users vs. OS's users?

    You are like those who still refuse the death of 32bits ...

    1.    Diego German Gonzalez said

      If there is someone on Linux Addicts that you cannot accuse of being Anti Microsoft, it is me. It is true that there are computers with TPM support, but not all for the version that Windows requests. And, in fact, they have not given a reasonable explanation for why they are asking for it.

      In fact, there are already tutorials on how to skip that requirement

    2.    Cyril said

      Linux does not require TPM to install it. The TPM is your dear windows problem. Enjoy it.

  3.   Guti said

    Even so, we must admit that in the last decade their attitude has changed a lot, which we cannot say about other software houses.