Google gets behind open source

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Google gets behind open source

Signs up to Open Invention Network (OIN).

Google has become the first end user of the Open Invention Network (OIN), which buys patents that can be used by anyone as long as they don't go against Linux.

The deal is an important boost to the OIN, which is financially backed by IBM, NEC, Novell, Philips, Red Hat and Sony. Google has not said what software it will be developing using the system.

"For us, today’s announcement marks the latest development in a long, fruitful relationship with the open source community. The Google Summer of Code program has trained over 2,000 students as open source developers, many on Linux-related projects," said Chris DiBona, Google's open source programs manager, on the company blog.

"We continue to fund external projects and host events like the and the Linux Foundation Innovation Summit. Hundreds of Googlers are submitting patches to Linux, and we’ve open-sourced over a million lines of code."

The news will be important in the future, with Microsoft insisting that the Linux kernel. Over 200 of its own patents – something Linux creator Linus Torvalds.

“As we look to grow the Linux Ecosystem, we are pleased to have Google become our first end-user licensee,” said Jerry Rosenthal, chief executive officer of Open Invention Network.

“Google is one of a growing number of companies, of all sizes, that value the openness and collaborative culture of the Linux community. We applaud their support for Linux.”

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