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To read comments to this article, go here
Yarro Said APIs Should Belong to the Community in 1997
Tuesday, March 29 2005 @ 12:14 PM EST

This is interesting. Remembering all that SCO has claimed about owning APIs (cf. Frank Sorenson et al's article on ABIs), take a look at what felixcatuk on SCOXE's Yahoo message board found, a press release from 1997, quoting Ralph Yarro of Canopy Group (then) saying this:

  "APIs should belong to the community at large, no one entity should control them," said Ralph Yarro, general manager of The Canopy Group, Inc. "We want users to have the freedom to choose the platforms that best serve them and not be limited by the lack of applications that run on them"

Excellent digging, felixcatuk.

Here's the complete press release, for those who do not like to click on links:

******************************

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CANOPY PROVIDES OPEN SOURCE CODE FOR FORMER WILLOWS CROSS-PLATFORM TECHNOLOGY: WINDOWS API/ABI

Usage Requires No License Fee

OREM, UT-JUNE 17, 1997, The Canopy Group Inc. today announced the immediate Internet availability of a cross-platform, Windows compatible Application Programming Interface (API) and provisional Application Binary Interface (ABI). This technology was formerly known as the ATWIN API under the company name of Willows Software (a division of the Canopy Group) and requires no license fee. The source code and provisional binary license allows for the rapid continuation of the technology with increased support for small and large ISVs.

The TWIN API is a cross-platform Windows Application Programming Interface (API) and provisionally, an Application Binary Interface (ABI). The API allows developers and companies to port and provide Windows applications and utilities for operating system platforms other than Windows. The ABI allows Windows applications to run unmodified on many diverse platforms including but not limited to: Novell NetWare, Apple Macintosh and Caldera OpenLinux.

The TWIN API also provides Windows API compatibility, supplying interfaces for 16 and 32 bit Windows APIs. Other popular Windows interfaces such as WinSock, Shell, Registry, Common Dialogs and Common Controls are also provided.

"APIs should belong to the community at large, no one entity should control them," said Ralph Yarro, general manager of The Canopy Group, Inc. "We want users to have the freedom to choose the platforms that best serve them and not be limited by the lack of applications that run on them. That's why we support not only this action, but other developments like the Wine Project and Java as well. We greatly appreciate the investment of time and money that developers have made to the Windows API. It is our intention to give them a free and efficient alternative for moving their products to other platforms without further investment."

Rob Farnum, the inventor of the Willows technology, is under contract with The Canopy Group to oversee the Internet development of the technology and resulting product direction and evangelization. "After watching the development of Linux over the last couple of years, I have become convinced that the Internet development community will keep the Willows technology moving forward with the best solutions possible," said Mr. Farnum. This bold move by The Canopy Group will allow the technology to benefit from the worldwide contributions of the best that the development community has to offer."

The Canopy Group's original intent for the Willows technology was to support their Caldera, Inc. Linux offering. However, this opportunity will now benefit the entire Internet community. "This action by the Canopy Group is a good one for us and the industry." said Bryan Sparks, president and CEO of Caldera, Inc. "The TWIN API/ABI broadens the scope of solutions that Caldera can provide on our OpenLinux platforms. It also provides resellers with an alternative for providing their custom solutions on other platforms. It gives them and their customers increased freedom-of-choice and better overall solutions."

"We have watched the Wine group's Internet success closely, and believe that the Willows code will help them be even more successful," continued Ralph Yarro of The Canopy Group. "The Wine project is a free Windows emulator currently being developed by volunteers on the Internet. The publication of the Willows source code means that both Willows and Wine will be able to benefit from each other's work, and build an even better emulator by combining the strengths of both products." Alexandre Julliard, leader of the Wine project concurs. "This is very exciting for us, being able to share code and ideas with Willows. It will be a huge help to fulfill our dream of a free Windows environment. It is a great day for the free software world!"

The Source code is available for download via FTP at: ftp.willows.com. Two email groups have been created for developers and users at: twindev@willows.com and twinusers@willows.com. For all other information you may contact Ralph Yarro at (801) 229-2223 or visit the Willows web site at: www.willows.com.

The Canopy Group is a division of NFT Ventures, Inc. based in Orem Utah. Its mission is to grow the industry by supporting and developing emerging companies and technologies that foster choice, offer strategic alternatives, and demonstrate industry leadership and vision. For more information visit www.canopy.com.

All products, services, companies and publications are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

Mailing lists: twindev@willows.com and twinusers@willows.com
How do I subscribe to the Willows mailing lists?
FTP: ftp.willows.com
URL: www.willows.com

Press Contact:
Ralph Yarro
Tel: (801) 229-2223
Fax: (801) 229-2458

Technical Contact:
Rob Farnum
Tel: (408) 867-5009
Fax: (408) 366-0344


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