[OT] Free software versus software idea patents

Ian Kelly ian.g.kelly at gmail.com
Tue Apr 12 23:05:49 CEST 2011

On Tue, Apr 12, 2011 at 2:51 PM, Dan Stromberg <drsalists at gmail.com> wrote:
> This data is of course skewed a bit toward computers that people are
> using web browsers on.

Right, Linux servers are most likely underrepresented.  At best the
data indicates what the population at large is using on their

> Also, something like LWN tends to get more
> Linux users, while microsoft.com tends to get more windows users.

That's why it's important to look at a large number of sites and take
more than one source of data into account.

> Also, some sites only allow IE (often for rather capricious reasons),
> so some *ix users tell their browsers to pretend to be IE to get
> around the restriction - and sometimes it's just easier to pretend to
> be IE all the time, even when you don't really need to.

That is one potential issue, although I really doubt that it accounts
for more than a couple of percent of the IE usage data.

> And IE runs
> on Solaris, albeit in what is probably now an ancient version.

It also runs on Macs.  Fortunately, it is standard practice to include
the OS in the user-agent string, so there is no need to guess it based
on the browser.

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