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    encoding the valid OID to match param matchAny a boolean flag indicating whether an expected policy set containing ANY POLICY should be considered a match return a Set of matched code PolicyNode code s Set PolicyNodeImpl getPolicyNodesExpected int depth String expectedOID boolean matchAny if expectedOID equals ANY POLICY if s equals 2 5 29 32 0 return getPolicyNodes i else getPolicyNodes depth else return getPolicyNodesExpectedHelper i s flag getPolicyNodesExpectedHelper depth expectedOID matchAny private Set Set PolicyNodeImpl getPolicyNodesExpectedHelper int i String s depth String expectedOID boolean flag matchAny HashSet hashset HashSet PolicyNodeImpl set new HashSet if mDepth HashSet PolicyNodeImpl if mDepth i depth PolicyNodeImpl policynodeimpl for Iterator iterator mChildren iterator iterator hasNext hashset addAll policynodeimpl getPolicyNodesExpectedHelper i s flag policynodeimpl PolicyNodeImpl iterator next for PolicyNodeImpl node mChildren set addAll node getPolicyNodesExpectedHelper depth expectedOID matchAny else if flag if mExpectedPolicySet contains 2 5 29 32 0 hashset add this if matchAny if mExpectedPolicySet contains ANY POLICY set add this else if mExpectedPolicySet contains s hashset add this if mExpectedPolicySet contains expectedOID set add this return hashset set Set Finds all nodes at the specified depth that contains the specified valid OID param depth an int representing the desired depth param validOID a String encoding the valid OID to match return a Set of matched code PolicyNode code s Set PolicyNodeImpl getPolicyNodesValid int i depth String s validOID HashSet hashset HashSet PolicyNodeImpl set new HashSet if mDepth HashSet PolicyNodeImpl if mDepth i depth PolicyNodeImpl policynodeimpl for Iterator iterator mChildren iterator iterator hasNext hashset addAll policynodeimpl getPolicyNodesValid i s policynodeimpl PolicyNodeImpl iterator next for PolicyNodeImpl node mChildren set addAll node getPolicyNodesValid depth validOID else if mValidPolicy equals s hashset add this if mValidPolicy equals validOID set add this return hashset set private static String policyToString String s oid if s equals 2 5 29 32 0 if oid equals ANY POLICY return anyPolicy else return s oid Prints out some data on this node String asString if mParent if mParent null return anyPolicy ROOT n StringBuffer stringbuffer else StringBuffer sb new StringBuffer int for int i 0 for int j 0 n getDepth i j n i stringbuffer append sb append stringbuffer append policyToString getValidPolicy stringbuffer append sb append policyToString getValidPolicy sb append CRIT stringbuffer append isCritical stringbuffer append sb append isCritical sb append EP for Iterator iterator getExpectedPolicies iterator iterator hasNext stringbuffer append for String policy getExpectedPolicies String s String iterator next stringbuffer append policyToString s sb append policyToString policy sb append sb append sb append getDepth sb append n return sb toString stringbuffer append stringbuffer append getDepth stringbuffer append n return stringbuffer toString oracle oracle google lawsuit 19 Comments Everydesk online a full desktop as a Facebook application Posted by cdaffara in EveryDesk divertissements on October 26th 2010 I am quite proud of the work that we did on EveryDesk a full desktop as a bootable USB key fully modifiable and adaptable We are using it in schools public administrations and companies where the increased efficiency of Linux makes a difference in making old computers usable again or helping in the problem of managing PCs that are remote or in hostile environments However this is not enough You may be without a USB bootable computer or you may be using a tablet like an iPad or a Galaxy Pad something that I see more and more everywhere In these environments you may need something more powerful than the apps that are available there a full Office like application or a real desktop browser to access a corporate banking application maybe you need a specific client for older systems like the IBM iSeries the old AS 400 or some special client in Java on system that do not have java or flash For this kind of applications we are working on a system that embeds a full HTML5 desktop in a FaceBook application making it accessible from any recent web browser including the iPad This way you can have a full desktop everywhere you go We hope that it can be of interest as soon as it is ready we will release source code and blueprints We have prepared a small demo of how it works right now it is a real screen capture from my own personal EveryDesk Online instance done on a normal ADSL line It should give an idea on how it may work for you open source OSS adoption 2 Comments Google vs Facebook two separate markets Posted by cdaffara in divertissements on September 14th 2010 Just a few days ago it was announced that according to ComScore people spent more time on Facebook than Google something that prompted a wide variety of claims from google is dead to facebook will become the internet or something similar The reality is that FB and GOOG are moving in two different markets and the failure of previous social experiments like Orkut or Buzz is actually related to the fact that Google internal machinery so sophisticated and tailored to help manage the world s information is not appropriate for something like social sites In fact Google manages everything with the assumption that data is in some sense relevant and useful in a generic sense at least for a subset of its users The concept of usefulness is at the core of the famous PageRank algorithm it uses the idea that links and connections are a substitute proxy for interest and mixes in the background information on who links what to create and propose potential links that maximize the probability that someone searching will go through and find something that is well interesting This way the said user will come back to Google to search something and this will bring back more ad revenues This is good and correct unless it s data that is ephemeral like the massive amount of drivel that is generated by social site users The updates on Facebook users walls are mostly uninteresting for anyone not part of the same social circle knowing that Justin just spilled its coke on all its textbooks What fun is probably relevant to people that know Justin whoever he is and maybe some textbook vendor that will probably get a new customer The value of Facebook is in its inclusiveness that is the fact that a large number of social groups of all sizes are within the same platform and share at least partly the same social graph But there is no need of a PageRank on the backoffice of Facebook search as all the search that is necessary is already structured within the user generated social graph itself That s why Google seem unable to turn its social acquisition into something integrated within its own services the engine behind Google is tailored for a different set of parameters and useless for social sites Which is a pity because some of the technology that Google developed to address this market like Wave was quite interesting but again simply ill suited to such a market 1 Comment Web versus Apps what is missing in HTML5 Posted by cdaffara in divertissements on September 2nd 2010 If there is a concept that is clear in the analysts minds is the fact that mobile in any form is the hot market right now Apple s iOS devices are growing by leaps and bounds dispelling the doom predictions of our beloved Ballmer There s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share No chance 2 or 3 which is what Apple might get or dismissing the iPad as yet another pc The reality is that new mobile platform are consolidating a concept the idea of the App store that is an integrated approach to managing and buying applications and the idea of apps for everything even for data that comes off straight from a web site like the recently launched Twitter app for the iPad that is in my own clearly subjective opinion beautiful After all the talks about platform independence portability universality of HTML5 and so on why Apps why closed or half open app stores when theoretically the same thing can be obtained through a web page I have a set of personal opinion on that and I believe that we still need some additional features and infrastructures from browsers and probably operating systems to really match the feature set and quality of apps If or when those missing pieces are delivered to the browser the whole development experience will in my opinion return back to the web as a medium substantially enlarging the potential user base and reducing the importance of a single OS to develop for User Interfaces this is actually one of the easiest things HTML5 CSS3 Canvas and a whole bunch of additions like WebGL are already closing in on the most refined native UI toolkits There is still a margin of course but that gap is closing fast Modern toolkits like Cappuccino one of my favorites used to create the stunning 280slides tool are quite comparable to native UIs and the few remaining features are being added at a frantic pace thanks in part to the healthy competition between Mozilla and WebKit Video actually WebM is in my tests a very good alternative to H264 in terms of quality and in decoding efficiency in my tests WebM playback uses 20 to 30 less CPU than the ffmpeg H264 decoder which is quite a good result As for quality the results of MSU graphics and media lab codec comparison found out that WebM is approximately equivalent to the baseline x264 encoding that is good enough for most applications The substantial drawback of WebM is at the moment the dreadful encoding time 5 to 20 times slower than comparable more mature encoders Substantial effort is needed before WebM can become encoding wise competitive 2D and casual gaming ah the hard point of gaming on the web Up to now gaming has been mainly relegated to the Flash engine and is one of the parts still not replicated well by HTML5 Javascript et al in fact Flash is quite important for the casual gaming experience and some quite stunning games are based on flash and comparable to native games if you want to waste some time look at RoboKill2 as an example However given the fact that no fully compatible open source flash player exist there are still issues with the real portability and platform independence of flash gaming in general despite the excellent improvements in Gnash and LightSpark also it may even be possible to see in the future a native translator to Javascript like the SmokeScreen project Actually there is a great deal of overlap of Flash with recent evolutions of Canvas HTML5 Javascript it is clear that the overall evolution of the open web platform is going in the direction of integrating most of flash functionalities directly within HTML 3D gaming There is at the moment no way to create something like the Epic Citadel demo or Carmack s RAGE engine on iOS The only potential alternative is WebGL that is like the previous links based on OpenGL 2 0 ES and paints on the HTML5 canvas that in the presence of proper support for hardware compositing should allow for complex interfaces and effects The problem is that browser support is still immature most browsers are still experimenting in an accelerated compositing pipeline right now and there are still lots of problems that need to be solved before the platform can be considered stable However after the basic infrastructure is done there is no reason for not seeing things like the current state of the art demos on the web modern in browser Javascript JIT are good enough for action and scripting web workers and web sockets are stable enough to create complex asynchronous event models It will take an additional year probably until the 3D support is good enough to see something like WoW inside a browser Local binary execution for those things that actually cannot be done by a browser local execution is the only alternative For example having a complex VPN client embedded in a web page is something that would simplify the task of connecting to a web or non web in an easy way without downloading any additional package This model was demonstrated by Google in its ChromeOS presentation showing off a game based on the Unity web player ported to the Native Client NaCl environment The problem of the initial implementation of NaCl was that the binary was actually not portable across cpu architectures the new pNaCl portable NaCl uses the incredibly good LLVM infrastructure to generate portable bytecodes Payment there is one thing that is sorely missing or incomplete and that is billing and payment management from the web application Within iOS and thanks to iTunes and carrier interactions paying even in game or in app is easy and immediate There is no similar ease of use and instant monetization within web applications at the moment One of the missing things is actually the overall management of digital identities that is inextricably linked to the payment possibilities and channels DRM yes DRM Or content protection or whatever Despite the clear indication that DRM schemes do not work there is no shortage of studios or content producer that want to ensure that there is at least a minimum form of protection against unwanted use I don t believe that this form of protection is useful at all but I am not confident in people accepting this in the next 5 years and this means that DRM should be possible in the context of the browser Possible alternatives are the use of a ported content execution engine imagine a video player based on pNaCl that brings its own DRM engine inside Or integrating an open source DRM engine like DReaM if it survives the Oracle changeover that is This kind of tool can also help to prevent cheating in online games imagine a WoW like game based on Javascript what prevents the user to change the code on the fly with something like GreaseMonkey and other multiplayer environments App stores what is an app store A tool to reduce searching costs and in Apple iTunes model a framework for app management and backup In a sense something like this is possible right now with some browser OS integration the excellent Jolicloud has something like that right now and with some additional support for web packaging formats and remote synchronization like Mozilla Sync this can become ubiquitous What do you think Is there something else missing Comments are as usual welcome app stores html5 open source web applications 5 Comments Windows phone 7 Android and market relevance Posted by cdaffara in divertissements on September 1st 2010 Updated despite the Business Insider claims the list of motives is actually a perfect copy of those mentioned by Steve Ballmer in a CNN interview and I also found that the list of motives for the claimed inferiority of Android is actually from 2008 as can be found here I found quite funny that basically the same motivations apply two years later for a different OS in 2008 it was Windows Mobile 6 5 a totally different operating system and are quite similar to the list of motivations from MS to avoid open source namely inferior user experience hidden costs and IPR risks Maybe Microsoft has not changed so much as it would like to claim A recent Business Insider post provided other than a nice retouched photo of Google s Schmidt with menacing red eyes a snippet of conversation with an anonymous MS employee that claimed that Android free OS is not free at all and its costs are much higher than the 15 asked by Microsoft as licensing fees Having had my stint on mobile economics I would like to contribute some of my thoughts on what is actually implied by the MS employee and why I believe that some parts of it are not accurate Before flaming me as a Google fanboy I would like to point out that I am not affiliated with Google MS anyone else apart my own company of course and my cellphone is a Nokia Enough said OEMs are not using the stock Android build All Android OEMs are bearing costs beyond free That goes with the definition of OEM it is hardly a surprising idea My gripe with the phrase is that the author had conveniently conflated the concept of free as freely available operating system with free as in I have nothing to do everything is done for me for free The second concept is actually quite uncommon and I had never met an OEM product manager that believed in something like that It reminds me a lot of the old taglines used in the infamous MS comparisons that were with blessings from all sacked from Microsoft web site So in conclusion yes you will bear costs other than downloading Android from GIT And surprise I am sure MS will ask for engineering costs for adapting WinPhone7 for any adaptation outside the stock image Lawsuits over disputed Android IP have been costly for Android OEMs See Apple HTC as just one example Microsoft indemnifies OEMs who license Windows Phone 7 against IP issues with the product That is legal disputes over the IP in Windows Phone 7 directed at OEMs will be handled by Microsoft This goes a long way toward controlling legal costs at the OEM level Ah please Microsoft you are so friend of OSS and you still drum the IPR violation song Anyway I am quite sure that indemnification can be quite easily acquired probably from Google or from a third party It depends on the kind of IPR that the OEM itself does have in some cases such a patent safety scheme is uneconomical It is in any case a business decision Symbian did not had indemnification either or only as an additional product but that did not stopped Symbian from becoming the most widely used mobile OS Android s laissez faire hardware landscape is a fragmented mess for device drivers For background just like PCs mobile devices need drivers for their various components screen GPS WiFi Bluetooth 3G radio accelerometer etc Android OEMs have to put engineering resources into developing these drivers to get their devices working The Windows Phone 7 chassis strategy allows devices to be created faster saving significant engineering cost It s essentially plug and play with device drivers authored by Microsoft This apart from the use of the clearly pejorative mention of fragmented mess is naturally true It is also another surprise the reason of Windows success namely the external ecosystem of hardware devices mostly unpredictable that were basically developed and managed outside of Microsoft control After much bashing of Apple s walled garden now Microsoft seem to imply that the same model that brought them success is now useless and that to win in mobile you have to adopt Apple centrally managed hardware experience It may be true or not but I suspect that hardware manufacturers will be more happy to create many permutation and device models designed for different price points and different users in a way that would be incompatible with MS central control and central device driver development What happens if I need to push on the market a device that deviates from the MS chassis Will MS write the driver for me for free What if it doesn t want to write it The chassis model is nice if you are Apple and are selling basically a single or a few models if you are going to market with many hardware vendors you are forcing the same undifferentiated hardware on all OEM and this is a great no no How are you going to go against competitors that do employ exactly the same model bill of material same procurement channel Also this phrase is a clear indication that someone inside of MS still don t understand what real open source is about The amount of engineering necessary for creating a complex product out of OSS is substantially lower than proprietary alternatives as I demonstrated here and here the driver development effort can easily be shared among many different projects that use the same component lowering the development costs substantially Windows Phone 7 has a software update architecture designed to make it easy for OEMs to plug in their custom code independent of the OS code We ve seen the delays due to Android OEMs having to sink engineering resources into each and every Android update Some Android OEMs skip updates or stop updating their less popular devices Because of the unique update architecture Windows Phone 7 OEMs don t need to roll their own updates based on the stock build Costs are reduced significantly This is another part that is until Phone 7 is out difficult to judge It is a part that I believe stems from an underlying error OEMs add code to differentiate and to push branded apps and services not because they have to compensate for an OS missing functionality especially now with Android 2 2 Android 1 5 and 1 6 needed some addition from third parties because of lack of features Carriers once sold a device are not that interested in providing updates after all you are already locked in a contract I had seen no official documentation on why Phone7 can be so modular that no engineering is needed even for custom layers on top of the user interface we will see Android OEMs need to pay for licenses for many must have features that are standard in Windows Phone 7 For example software to edit Office documents audio video codecs see some costs here or improved location services for this Moto licenses from Skyhook just as Apple once did Of course all of these license fees add up I like the concept of must have it is widely different for every user and company For example I am sure that using Google Docs or Zoho or Microsoft Web office that is quite good on its own would go against the edit Office documents part as for the audio video codecs of course you have to license them unless you use WebM or similar Or like many OEM you are already a licensee for H264 and other covered standards in this case you pay around 1 per device As for other services I found no mention of location services from MS at least not in the public presentations If anyone has more details on them I would welcome any addition Windows Phone 7 supports automated testing Android doesn t When OEMs hit the QA phase of the development lifecycle it s faster and less expensive to QA a Windows Phone 7 device than an Android device Again if you have a single chassis or a few of them testing is certainly easier However there are quite a few testing suites that allow through the emulator to provide a very good automated testing facility Finally Windows Phone 7 comes with great user experiences in the Metro UI Zune Xbox LIVE Exchange and Visual Studio for app development Creating these experiences for Android is costly They re not baked into the stock build of Android Well there are quite a few tools for app development on Android as well How exactly Exchange should be counted as a great user experience is something I am not understanding well but that is probably a limit of mine In synthesis the new MS concept is we do it like Apple I am not sure that this can work for anyone that is not Apple though first of all because up to now product engineering excellence was not among MS most touted virtues and because this will in turn go against the differentiation trend that OEM and telcos are pushing to make sure that their brand lines remain unique and appealing enough How many Phone7 devices can a telco carry 1 2 It is possible to imagine a custom Android device for every price point instead some carriers like Motorola and HTC are already pushing 5 6 devices and more and low cost handsets are adding even more to the segmentation mix android open source software patents windows phone 7 4 Comments Oracle Sun Java lawsuits mark the exit road Posted by cdaffara in blog divertissements on August 25th 2010 I already wrote a few words on the Oracle Google lawsuits here and here and I would like to thank all those that found them interesting enough to read and comment on I found recently a very interesting post by Java author extraordinaire James Gosling where he answers on some of his readers comments In the post there are many interesting ideas and a few points that I believe are not totally accurate or better may be explained in a different way In particular I believe that the role of Java in the enterprise will remain and will become legacy that is stable plain and boring while the real evolution will move from Java to something else James clearly points out the fact that JavaME fragmentation was a substantial hurdle for developers and believes that in a lesser way this may be true for Android as well While it is true that fragmentation was a problem for Java on mobile this was a common aspect of mobile development at the time go ask a Windows Mobile developer about fragmentation And see a grown man cry as the song says The problem of JavaME was not fragmentation but lack of movement the basic toolkits the UI components most of the libraries for one reason or the other remained largely unchanged apart a few bug fixes JavaFX should have been promoted much much earlier and would have had a great impact on software development like I believe the more recent Qt releases from Nokia and their idea of declarative user interfaces If we compare with the rest of Java we see a much stronger push towards adding libraries components functionalities all things that made Java one of the best choices for software developers in the enterprise space because the developers can trust Sun to update and extend their platform making their job easier and faster It was the same approach that made Microsoft the king of software create lots of tools and libraries for developers sometimes even trying to push more than one approach at a time to see what sticks like Fahrenheit or trying very experimental and skunkworks approach that later are turned into more mature projects like WinG JavaEE and JavaSE followed the same model with a consistent stream of additions and updates that created a confidence in developers and despite all the naysayers for enterprise software Java was portable with very little effort even for very large applications JavaME was not so lucky and partly to guarantee uniform licensing Sun was forced to do everything on their own a striking difference with Android that if you check the source code included tons of external open source projects inside limiting the rate of growth attainable Some features that now we take for granted like web browsing were not included as default or implemented by vendors in inconsistent way because Sun never gave guidance on the roadmap and product evolution multimedia has been mostly an afterthought usually forcing developers to create or buy external libraries to implement anything more complex than a video or audio player As I wrote before JavaFX should have been announced much much earlier and not as a reactive answer to the competition but as part of a long term roadmap that JavaEE had while the rest of Java missed This is in my opinion one of the real reasons for the lawsuit Sun now Oracle was unable to create and maintain a real roadmap outside of JavaEE and partly JavaSE and especially for JavaME they constantly followed never led This as any developer will tell you is never a good position it s full of dust and you miss all the scenery So since Oracle is really more interested in their own markets the DB and the applications and not really caring about software developers ecosystems or openness they probably believe that lawsuits do have a better return on investment open source oracle google 7 Comments Oracle Google the strategy behind Sun Oracle and the OSS implications Posted by cdaffara in blog divertissements on August 15th 2010 In my previous post I tried to provide some details on what in my opinion were the most relevant legal and licensing aspects of the recently launched Oracle lawsuit against Google I would like now to provide some perspective on what may have been the motives behind this lawsuit and what are the possible implications for the Java and Open Source communities First of all it is clear that as I mentioned before Google turned the lawsuit into a positive event for their slightly battered public image By turning the lawsuit against Android into an attack to the open source community Google effectively created a positive image as David unjustly accused by the Oracle giant It is also clear that the lawsuit itself is actually quite weak focusing on a copyright claim that is very vague given the fact that Google never claimed to use Java and a set of patent claims for techniques that are probably not relevant anymore especially in the post Bilski era One of the possible reasons for this is to be sure that even the widely different Dalvik machine would be at least partially covered the other is the fact that all of Classpath was included in the OIN System Components covered technologies Since both Oracle and Google are part of OIN I suspect that Oracle wanted to avoid any potential complication coming from this broken marriage But this is not the only relevant aspect Actually an angle that is probably more important is the impact of the lawsuit on Java Java for mobile Android and the OSS communities that were part of the Sun technology landscape Enterprise Java no change at all Java is a very strong brand among corporate developers and I doubt that the lawsuit will change anything at all in fact all the various licensee of the Java full specification are on perfectly legal grounds and face no problem at all Despite the opportunistic claims by Miguel De Icaza that suggests that Mono C would have been a better choice there is nothing in the lawsuit that would imply that other Java or Java related technologies may be impacted actually Mono and the CLR are in the same situation as Dalvik actually Mobile Java as I mentioned before the lawsuit put the last stone on the JavaME grave The only potentially relevant route away from the land of the dead could have been JavaFX that was too little too late incomplete missing several pieces missing a roadmap and uselessly released as a binary only project Android used the Java language extended it with mobile specific classes that were more modern and more useful for recent smartphones and even non phone applications like entertainment devices automotive and navigation devices It is not a surprise that coupled with the Google brand name Android surged in popularity so much as to become a threat Oracle OSS projects Oracle has always been an opportunistic user of open source With the term opportunistic I am not implying any negative connotation simply the observation that Oracle dabbled in open source whenever there was an opportunity to reduce its own research and development costs If you look at oracle projects it is clear that all projects are related to infrastructural functionality for the Oracle run time and for developers tools using Eclipse as a basis I was not able to find any intrinsic open source project started or adopted by Oracle that was not focused on this approach So for those projects I believe that there will be no difference for example I believe that the activity on the Oracle sponsored BTRFS project will not change significantly Oracle actually does not care at all if they are seen as enemies or if their projects are not used anymore by others What they care for is for their patches to be included in Linux Remember that Oracle is an old style company it does have two basic product lines its database and its set of enterprise applications Everything else is not quite necessary and probably will be abandoned Sun OSS projects as for Sun there is a long preamble first Sun has always been first and foremost an engineering company something like Silicon Graphics in the past or more recently Google Sun had open sourced something of value whenever it was necessary to establish a common platform or protocol like NFS or NIS but it was the advent of Jonathan Schwartz that actually turned things towards open source The ponytailed CEO tried to turn the Sun behemoth towards a fully open strategy but was unable to manage the conversion before being ousted out It is a pity actually Sun could have leveraged its size large number of technical partners and amount of technologies to become a platform provider like RedHat but 10 times larger The problem of this strategy is that it implies a large amount of cooperative development and thus a substantial downsizing of the company itself The alternative could have been the use of an open core like strategy for example creating a scalable JVM designed to auto partition code execution on network of computers The basic JVM could have been dual licensed with the enhanced one released on a proprietary basis this could have leveraged the exceptional Sun expertise in grid and parallel computing filesystems and introspection systems But Sun never managed to complete the path it dwindled left and right with lots of subprojects that were started and abandoned The embracing of PostgreSQL its later abandonment the latter embrace of MySQL that was then not integrated anywhere the creation of substantial OSS projects from their proprietary offering but then losing interest as soon as a project started to become a threat for the proprietary edition There is no surprise that despite the incredible potential Sun never recouped much of their OSS investment despite the great growth in their latest quarters the OSS services remained a small portion of their revenues Now that Oracle has taken control I believe that Sun openness will quickly fade towards small utilitarian projects so even if now everyone looks at Oracle with anger noone at Oracle could care less Why oracle sued The blogosphere is exploding with possible answers my own two hypothesis are Oracle found a substantial technology it acquired Java losing value in what is the hottest tech market today namely mobile systems Sun had no credible plan to update JavaME no credible alternative and thus Android that is loosely java based is at the same time a threat to an acquired asset and from their point of view a stolen technology Since anyone can follow the same path Oracle wants to make sure that noone else would try to leverage Java to create an unlicensed and uncontrolled copy Oracle wants a piece of the mobile enterprise market and the alternatives are unavailable Apple does not want anything to do with Java Blackberry is a JavaME licensee Windows Mobile is backed by arch rival Microsoft Android is working well grows incredibly fast and Oracle wants a piece of it Google probably rebuffed initial contacts and now Oracle is showing the guns to make Google obey I am skeptical however that Google would back down on what is becoming its most important growth path The lawsuit itself is quite weak and Google would risk too much by licensing the

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  • Strategy, Tactics, and why companies are free to not contribute. « carlodaffara.conecta.itcarlodaffara.conecta.it
    to measure non code contributions And such contributions may be hugely important one of my favorite example is the release from Red Hat of the Liberation fonts a set of fonts with metrics compatible with the most widely used Microsoft fonts like Arial That alone helped substantially in improving the quality and correctness of document editing and visualization on Linux How to measure that Ubuntu has substantially contributed in terms of dissemination in creating a base for many other distributions including our own Everydesk How to assess the value of that The second aspect is more complex and is related to the strategy and tactics that a company uses to fulfill its own goals Let s take into account what a normal company do first of all survive that is revenues reserves expenses Not all companies do have such a goal a company designed to fulfill a task and then end its activities does have the survival goal with a deadline but most do This means that a company performs an internal or external activity if it does provide now or in the future a probable increase in revenues or reserves or decreases expenses Moral or ethical goals can be easily modeled in this schema using a ethical asset that is a measure of how good we are in a specific target environment for example ecological contributions and so on So let s think about our typical company using OSS for a product Let s imagine that the company is doing a tactical adoption that is it does not have a long term strategy that is based on Open Source If the cost of contributing something is lower than the cost of doing everything from scratch then the company will contribute back or at least the probability of that action is higher In absence of a strategy based on open source there is no need to go further For example in the blog post the open sourcing of IOS is mentioned the question is why What economic goal this open sourcing brings If the company decides to adopt a long term strategy based on resource sharing with the idea of receiving substantial contributions from external entities like Linux WebKit Apache and so on then this may make sense but it implies a substantial change in company strategy Such large changes are not easy to do and perform well Sun tried and partly failed and most of the famous examples are only partially adopting an open based strategy IBM Oracle Google To recap 1 we must evaluate and appreciate all kind of contributions not only code 2 We can expect large scale contributions only from companies that bet their strategy on OSS Red Hat is among my favorite examples of that We cannot expect realistically for companies that are using Open Source in a tactical way to contribute back in the same way open source OSS adoption OSS business models This entry was posted on Thursday September 16th 2010 8 30

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  • OSS 4.0 and licenses: not a clear-cut choice « carlodaffara.conecta.itcarlodaffara.conecta.it
    entity that manages a project No sponsor is the kind of project managed by a non coordinated community for example by volunteers market sponsor are projects coordinated by a company while nonmarket sponsor are project managed by a structured organization that is not inherently for profit like a development consortia an example is the Eclipse Foundation The research data identified a clear effect of how the project is coordinated and the kind of license the license restrictiveness has been found to be correlated with decreased contributions for nonmarket sponsors like OSS foundations and is in general related to the higher percentage of infrastructural projects like libraries development tools enabling technologies of such foundations In general the license selection follows from the main licensing and business model constraints When the project is derived from an external FLOSS project then the main constraint is the original license In this case the basic approach is to find a suitable license from those compatible with the original license and select among the possible business models the one that is consistent with the selected exploitation strategy When one of the partners has an Intellectual Property Rights licensing policy that is in conflict with a FLOSS license the project can select a MIT or BSD license if compatible with an eventual upstream release or use an intermediate releaser in the latter case there are no constraints on license selection If a MIT or BSD license is selected some models are of difficult application for example Open Core and Dual Licensing are difficult to implement because the license lack the reciprocity of copyleft When there are no external licensing constraints and external contributions are important license can be more or less freely selected for nonmarket entities a non copylefted license gives a greater probability of contribution So if you are creating a nonmarket entity and you are free to choose choose non copyleft licenses In the other situations it is not so simple and it may even be difficult to avoid previous licensing requirements The point on intermediate releasers require some additional consideration An especially important point of OSS licenses is related to embedded IPR that is the relationship of the code released with software patents that may be held by the releasing authority While the debate on software patents is still not entirely settled with most OSS companies vigorously fighting the process of patenting software based innovations while on the other hand large software companies defending the practice for example SAP most open source licenses explicitly mention the fact that software patents held by the releasing authority are implicitly licensed for use with the code This means that business practices that rely on separate patent licensing may be incompatible with some specific OSS licenses in particular the Apache License and the GPL family of licenses The Eclipse Public License gives patent grants to the original work and to enhanced versions based on the original work but not to code not directly derived from the release while

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  • OSS licenses « carlodaffara.conecta.itcarlodaffara.conecta.it
    for nonmarket entities a non copylefted license gives a greater probability of contribution So if you are creating a nonmarket entity and you are free to choose choose non copyleft licenses In the other situations it is not so simple and it may even be difficult to avoid previous licensing requirements The point on intermediate releasers require some additional consideration An especially important point of OSS licenses is related to embedded IPR that is the relationship of the code released with software patents that may be held by the releasing authority While the debate on software patents is still not entirely settled with most OSS companies vigorously fighting the process of patenting software based innovations while on the other hand large software companies defending the practice for example SAP most open source licenses explicitly mention the fact that software patents held by the releasing authority are implicitly licensed for use with the code This means that business practices that rely on separate patent licensing may be incompatible with some specific OSS licenses in particular the Apache License and the GPL family of licenses The Eclipse Public License gives patent grants to the original work and to enhanced versions based on the original work but not to code not directly derived from the release while permissive licenses like BSD and MIT give no patent rights at all If for compatibility or derivation a license that gives explicitly IPR rights must be selected and the company or research organization wants to maintain the rights to use IPR in a license incompatible way a possible solution may be the use of an intermediate releaser that is an entity that has no IPR on its own to which the releasing organization gives a copy of the source code for further publication Since the intermediate release has no IPR the license clauses that require patent grants are not activated while the code is published with the required license this approach has been used for example by Microsoft for some of its contributions to the Apache POI project This may become an important point of attention for companies that are interested in releasing source code under an OSS license most software houses are still interested in maintaining their portfolio of patents and are not willing to risk invalidation through accidental licensing of IPR embedded in source code one of the reasons why Microsoft will never sell a Linux based system As I wrote in the beginning there is for a large number of consortia a clear preference for non copyleft licenses but it is not possible to generalize the panorama of OSS is so complex right now that even doing predictions is difficult FLOSS open source OSS adoption OSS business models OSS licenses 4 Comments A small and unscientific exploration of OSS license use Posted by cdaffara in OSS data divertissements on March 17th 2010 I was intrigued by an excellent as usual post by Matthew Aslett of 451 group titled On the fall and rise

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  • The basis of OSS business models: property and efficiency « carlodaffara.conecta.itcarlodaffara.conecta.it
    lots of effort and this effort is reduced the more you experience the tasks necessary to perform the installation itself Examples of the second may be the introduction of a tool that simplifies the process for example through image cloning and it introduces a huge discontinuity a jump in the graph of efficiency versus time These two aspects are the basis of all the business models that we have analysed in the past it is possible to show that all of them fall in a continuum between properties and efficiency Among the results of our past research project one thing that we found is that property based projects tend to have lower contributions from the outside because it requires a legal transaction to become part of the company s properties think for example at dual licensing to become part of the product source code an external contributor needs to sign off his rights to the code to allow the company to sell the enterprise version alongside the open one On the other hand right handed models based purely on efficiency tends to have higher contributions and visibility but lower monetization rates As I wrote many times there is no ideal business model but a spectrum of possible models and companies should adapt themselves to changing market conditions and adapt their model as well Some companies start as pure efficiency based and build an internal property with time some others may start as property based and move to the other side to increase contributions and reducing the engineering effort or enlarging the user base to create alternative ways of monetizing users This is the last post in our little mini serie on OSS business models I hope that my archetypal three readers will have enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed writing them Of course I will be happy to read and respond to any comment even negative ones open source OSS adoption OSS business models This entry was posted on Monday July 26th 2010 8 20 am and is filed under OSS business models You can follow any responses to this entry through RSS 2 0 You can leave a response or trackback from your own site Comments 3 Trackbacks 3 1 by aparadekto October 25th 2010 at 18 43 Hey I can t view your site properly within Opera I actually hope you look into fixing this Quote 2 by cdaffara October 25th 2010 at 20 38 I have tried the site with Opera on Linux but I may have missed something Can you tell me what part is not working Thanks Carlo Daffara Quote 3 by Bedar May 20th 2013 at 00 16 hello Carlo Daffara I am a computer science student in Technical University of Berlin I read your article and I found it very interesting I write a paper on general information on open source business models I cannot decode or describe or understand Figure 1 which is Open Source Business Models Along the property Efficiency

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  • The relationship between Open Core, dual licensing and contributions « carlodaffara.conecta.itcarlodaffara.conecta.it
    selection between the community and enterprise edition and because open core naturally hampers participation I had some readers asking me why and I will respond with a subset of my LinuxTag slides Open core is usually built by a set of internal open source components held together by a dual licensed wrapper plus proprietary modules on the outside One of the best examples of this is Zimbra an excellent product on its own but MySQL in recent editions can be included in the same group As discussed in previous posts dual licensing hampers contributions because it requires an explicit agreement on ceding rights to the company that employs it in order to be able to relicense it for the proprietary edition This means that Open Core companies in itself will have an easier time in monetizing their software but will receive much less contributions in exchange As I wrote before it is simply not possible to get something like Linux or Apache with Open Core Again open core is not bad per se but I would have been more cautious in calling Sugar an open source company for whatever definition you have of that But it is a tradeoff monetization versus contributions And my bets are on contributions as OpenStack demonstrates you need leverage and external resources to go beyond what a single company can do open source OSS adoption OSS business models This entry was posted on Wednesday July 21st 2010 5 23 pm and is filed under OSS adoption OSS business models You can follow any responses to this entry through RSS 2 0 You can leave a response or trackback from your own site Comments 0 Trackbacks 5 No comments yet Cancel Reply Name required E Mail required will not be published Website Submit Comment Tweets that

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  • An on-vacation post on Open core « carlodaffara.conecta.itcarlodaffara.conecta.it
    sustainable Even my friend Erwin Tenhumberg that is quite knowledgeable expert and incredibly nice on its own had a slide in this sense in his LinuxTag presentation and you can find lots of comments like that in many publication something like the majority of OSS companies adopt the so called mixed model despite this being actually false as we found in our survey of OSS companies The point like said before is that the important thing is not that there is a superior model but that for every company every market there is an optimal model it may be OC it may be pure services or lots of combinations of our 11 building blocks The optimal model changes with time and market condition and what is appropriate now may be wrong tomorrow No open source model can achieve the kind of profit margins of proprietary companies So if you want to make your OSS company remember this basic fact If you want the kind of profit margins of Microsoft or Oracle forget it So to end this post there are three critical points whether the model is clear for the adopter and this should be a given and actually nowadays I would say that most companies are absolutely honest and clear on this whether the software in its open source edition provides sufficient functionality to be useful to a wide range of adopters and this is a fine line to walk and requires constant adaptation and whether the increased monetization compensates for the lack of external contributions that can substantially increase the value of the code base you are trading cash for code and engineering in a sense Can we put this to rest End the name calling be friends and call all of us family Especially since right now under the sun of Fuerteventura where I am writing this it seems difficult to fight by the way sorry for any misspelling There is no spell checker here on this small screen open source OSS business models This entry was posted on Tuesday July 6th 2010 5 14 pm and is filed under OSS adoption OSS business models You can follow any responses to this entry through RSS 2 0 You can leave a response or trackback from your own site Comments 2 Trackbacks 4 1 by Karl Beecher July 7th 2010 at 17 36 I continue to enjoy your blog Hope you re enjoying the holiday I know how you feel unable to resist posting while trying to relax I just have a question on your first bullet point stating that there are no good or bad business models Your words so I may misinterpret you but those words to me carry moral connotations Are you saying that there is no moral dimension when deciding on the use of open core or do you think that there is a moral dimension but it ought to come secondary to business Enjoy the rest of your vacation Quote 2 by cdaffara

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  • OSS business models « carlodaffara.conecta.itcarlodaffara.conecta.it
    of the enterprise edition that have a direct relationship with widgets inc and users of the enterprise edition that are managed by a partner There is a potential fourth segment that is users of a potential community enhanced edition for example a commercial offering by an independent vendor that enhanced the community edition and that is selling that in a form similar to our enterprise offering What can we say of these segments The enterprise edition users are paying us of course and the profitability of each customer depends on the cost of servicing it that changes if we follow it directly or through a partner a reseller will require a percentage of revenues but on the other hand it handles some of the support costs and covered some of the expenses for getting the customer in the first place The community users are not paying us but can be leveraged in several ways as a reference for example GE is an Alfresco user even if it was not paying for the enterprise edition and this can be a reference with a commercial value and by conversion In fact community users may become enterprise users with a conversion ratio that is quite low from 0 5 to 3 depending on the kind of software but that can become substantial if the user base is large enough MySQL is a good example of such conversion by numbers Sometimes segments are interlocked in what are called multisided markets An example is a merchant like eBay that needs a large number of buyers and sellers to guarantee the fluidity of the market itself it may charge sellers buyers or both charge only on trade performed on publication or not at all for example using advertising to recover costs A common segmentation is also that based on size or revenue assumptions so you get something like an SME offering and a large company or administration offering Thanks to data from eBusinessWatch an observatory of the European Commission we know that the average precentage of revenues spent for ICT in companies is roughly the same for small and large companies but this does also imply that smaller companies do have a smaller available budget while larger companies may have a much longer and costlier procurement process Value proposition the reason why someone would want to come to widgets inc in the first place because we solve a problem or satisfy a need In our case we have two separate propositions one for the community edition and one for the enterprise edition The community edition may solve a practical problem for companies for example document management groupware whatever and thus gives a concrete value in exchange for the time necessary for the customer to install and adapt the product by themselves including the potential risk if something does not work The enterprise edition changes this proposition by costing something in monetary term in exchange for an easier installation or better out of the box experience support lower risk knowing that it is possible to ask for support and so on The value proposition should be explicit to give your customers paying and non paying an idea of why it is useful to invest time or money in widgets inc products realistic your company will not survive in the long term if the value advantage is not there at all and approximately quantifiable The value proposition may be different for different customer segments for example a groupware system for a small company may not require to handle thousands of users in general the additional value of a feature or a structural property of your product is dependent on whether your customer is in position to use it and this usually shows out in the fact that there may be different advertising for different segments pushing only on those features that are relevant Next part channels and resources See you next time open source OSS business models 3 Comments Why COMmunity COMpany is a winning COMbination Posted by cdaffara in OSS adoption OSS business models on October 16th 2009 There is an interesting debate partially moved by Matt Asay with sound responses from Matthew Aslett that centered on the reasons for or not moving part of the core IP asset of an open source company towards an externally controlled group like a consortia Matthew rightly indicates that this is probably the future direction of OSS the 4 0 of his graph and I tried to address this with a few friends on twitter but 140 chars are too few So I will use this space to provide a small overview of my belief the current structure based on open core is a temporary step in a more appropriate commercialization structure that for efficiency reason should be composed of a commuity managed or at least transparently managed consortia that manages the core of what now is the open source part of open core offerings and a purely proprietary company that provides the monetization services may those be proprietary add ons paid services and so on Why Because the current structure is not the most efficient to enable participation from outside groups if you look at the various open core offerings the majority of the code is developed from in house developers while on community managed consortia the code may be originated by a single company but is taken up by more entities The best example is Eclipse as recently measured 25 of the committers work for IBM with individuals accounting for 22 and a large number of companies like Oracle Borland Actuate and many others with percentages that go from 1 to 7 in a collective non IBM collaboration Having then a pure proprietary company that sells services or add ons also removes any possibility of misunderstanding about what is offered to the customer and thus will make the need of a OSS checklist unnecessary Of course this means that the direction of the project is no longer in the hand of a single company and this may be a problem for investors that may want to have some form of exclusivity or guarantee of maintaining the control But my impression is that there is only the illusion of control because if there is a large enough payoff forks will make the point moot exactly like it happened with MySQL and by relieving control the company gets back a much enlarged community of developers and potential adopters FLOSS open source 3 Comments On licenses communities business models Posted by cdaffara in OSS business models OSS data on August 28th 2009 The debate on whether the GPL is going the way of the dodo or not is still raging in a way similar to the one on open core not surprisingly since they are both related to similar aspects that intermingle technical and emotional aspects A recent post from BlackDuck indicates that on some metric not very well specified unfortunately the GPLv2 for the first time dropped below 50 while Amy Stephen points out that the GPLv2 is used in 55 of the new projects with the LGPL at 10 something that is comparable to the results that we found in FLOSSMETRICS for the stable projects Why such a storm The reason is partly related to a strong association of the GPL with a specific political and ethical stance an association that is in my view negative in the long term and partly because the GPL is considered to be antithetic to so called open core models where less invasive licenses like the Apache or Eclipse licenses are considered to be more appropriate First of all the open core debate is mostly moot the new open core is quite different from the initial free demo approach as magistrally exemplified by Eric Barroca of Nuxeo While in the past the open core model was basically to present a half solution barely usable for testing now open core means a combination of services and little added code like the new approach taken by Alfresco that in the past I would have probably classified in the ITSM class installation training support maintenance in recent report rechristened as product specialist Read as an example the post from John Newton describing Alfresco approach We must insure that customers using our enterprise version are not locked into that choice and that open source is available to them To that end the core system and interfaces will remain 100 open source We will provide service and customer support that provides insurance that systems will run as expected and correct problems according our promised Service Level Agreement Enterprise customers will receive fixes as a priority but that we will make these fixes available in the next labs release Bugs fixed by the community are delivered to the community as a priority We will provide extensions and integrations to proprietary systems to which customers are charged It is fair for us to charge and include this in an enterprise release as well Extensions and integrations to ubiquitous proprietary systems such as Windows and Office will be completely open source Extensions that are useful to monitor or run a system in a scaled or production environment such as system monitoring administration and high availability are fair to put into an enterprise release The new open core is really a mix of services including enhanced documentation and training materials SLA backed support stability testing and much more In this new model the GPL is not a barrier in any way and can be used to implement such a model without additional difficulties The move towards services also explains why despite the claim that open core models are the preferred monetization strategies our work in FLOSSMETRICS found that only 19 of the companies surveyed used such a model a number that is consistent with the 23 7 found by the 451 group despite the claim that Open Core becomes the default business model The reality is that the first implementation of open core was seriously flawed for several reasons The model has the intrinsic downside that the FLOSS product must be valuable to be attractive for the users but must also be not complete enough to prevent competition with the commercial one This balance is difficult to achieve and maintain over time also if the software is of large interest developers may try to complete the missing functionality in a purely open source way thus reducing the attractiveness of the commercial version and from Matthew Aslett I previously noted that with the Open Core approach the open source disruptor is disrupted by its own disruption and that in the context of Christensen s law of Conservation of Attractive Profits it is probably easier in the long term to generate profit from adjacent proprietary products than it is to generate profit from proprietary features deployed on top of the commoditized product In the process of selecting a business model then the GPL is not a barrier in adopting this new style of open core model and certainly creates a barrier for potential freeriding by competitors something that was for example recognized by SpringSource that adopted for most of their products the Apache license The GPL is well understood by the market and the legal community and has notable precedents such as MySQL Java and the Linux kernel as GPL licensed projects The GPL ensures that the software remains open and that companies do not take our products and sell against us in the marketplace If this happened we would not be able to sufficiently invest in the project and everyone would suffer The GPL family at the moment has the advantage that the majority of packages are licensed under one of such licenses making compatibility checking easier also there is an higher probability of finding a GPL v2 v3 AGPL LGPL package to improve than starting for scratch and this should also guarantee that in the future the license mix will probably continue to be oriented towards copyleft style restrictions Of course there will be a movement towards the GPLv3 reducing the GPLv2 share especially for new projects but as a collective group the percentages will remain more or less similar This is not to say that the GPL is perfect on the contrary the text even in the v3 edition lacks clarity on derivative works has been bent too much to accommodate anti tivoization clauses that contributed to a general lack of readability of the text and lacks a worldwide vision something that the EUPL has added In terms of community and widespread adoption the GPL can be less effective as a tool for creating widespread platform usage the EPL or the Apache license may be more appropriate for this role and this because the FSF simply has not created a license that fullfills the same role this time for political reasons What I hope is that more companies start the adoption process under the license that allows them to be commercially sustainable and thriving The wrong choice way hamper growth and adoption or may limit the choice of the most appropriate business model The increase in adoption will also trigger what Matthew Aslett mentioned as the fifth stage of evolution still partially undecided I am a strong believer that there will be a move toward consortia managed projects something similar to what Matthew calls the embedded age the availability of neutral third party networks increase the probability and quality of contributions in a way similar to the highly successful Eclipse foundation FLOSS OSS adoption OSS business models 7 Comments Some observations on licenses and forge evolution Posted by cdaffara in OSS adoption OSS business models OSS data on August 12th 2009 One of the activities we are working on to distract ourselves from the lure of beaches and mountain walks is the creation of a preliminary model of actor actions for the OSS environment trying to estimate the effect of code and non code contributions and the impact of OSS on firms adopters producers leaders following the model already outlined by Carbone and the impact of competition resistance measures introduced by firms pricing and licensing changes are among the possibility We started with some assumptions on our own of course first of all rationality of actors the fact that OSS and traditional firms do have similar financial and structural properties something that we informally observed in our study for FLOSSMETRICS and commented over here and the fact that technology adoption of OSS is similar to other IT technologies Given this set of assumptions we obtained some initial results on licensing choices and I would like to share them with you License evolution is complex and synthesis reports like the one that is presented daily by Black Duck can only show a limited view of the dynamics of license adoption In Black Duck s database there is no account for live or active projects and actually I would suggest them to add a separate report for only the active and stable ones 3 to 7 of the total and actually those that are used in the enterprise anyway Our model predicts that in the large scale license compatibility and business model considerations are the main drivers for a specific license choice in this sense our view is that for new projects the license choice is more or less not changed significantly in the last year and that can be confirmed by looking at the new projects appearing in sourceforge that maintain an overall 70 preference for copyleft licensing models higher in some specialized forges that reach 75 and of course lower in communities like Codeplex Our prediction is that license adoption follows a diffusion process that is similar to the one already discussed here for web server adoption parameters are also quite similar as the time frame and so we should expect a relative stabilization and further reduction of fringe licenses In this sense I agree with Matthew Aslett and the 451 CAOS 12 analysis on the fact that despite the claims there is actually a self paced consolidation An important aspect for people working on this kind of statistical analysis is the relative change in importance of forges and the movement toward self management of source code for commercial OSS companies A good example comes from the FlossMOLE project It is relatively easy to see the reduction in the number of new projects in forges that is only partially offset by new repositories not included in the analysis like Googlecode or Codeplex this reduction can be explained by the fact that with an increasing number of projects it is easier to find an existing project to contribute to instead of creating one anew An additional explanation is the fact that commercial OSS companies are moving from the traditional hosting on Sourceforge to the creation of internally managed and public repositories where the development process is more controlled and manageable my expectation is for this trend to continue especially for platform like products an example is SugarForge FLOSS open source OSS business models 2 Comments The different reasons for company code contributions Posted by cdaffara in OSS adoption OSS business models OSS data on July 15th 2009 It was recently posted by Matt Asay an intriguing article called Apache and the future of open source licensing that starts with the phrase If most developers contribute to open source projects because they want to rather than because they re forced to why do we have the GNU General Public License It turns out that Joachim Henkel one of the leading European researchers in the field of open source already published several papers on commercial contributions to open source projects especially in the field of embedded open source Among them one of my favourite is Patterns of Free Revealing Balancing Code Sharing and Protection in Commercial Open Source Development that is available also at the Cospa knowledge base a digital collection of more than

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