27 June 2006

Horror vs. Horror: A Study in Contrasts

As TechDirt notes, it's rather curious that not one but two articles about Nathan Myhrvold's Intellectual Ventures should appear almost simultaneously. One is in BusinessWeek Online, and the other in Fortune.

Both tell the frightening story of Intellectual Ventures (IV) that I've commented on before. What's interesting here is the study in contrasts that the two features offer. It's worth reading both, just to make your flesh creep.

The Fortune piece is better, because it has a real nugget:

Microsoft confirms to FORTUNE that it is putting $76 million into IV: $36 million as an equity investment and $40 million for the right to use IV's inventions, with an option to invest an additional $40 million later.

This is an important fact, because it shows why Intellectual Ventures is likely to become the twofold bane of the open source world - because patents are problematic in general, and because it will be convenient for Myhrvold's ex-boss.

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