Microsoft, the monolithic force in the land of software licensing and exclusivity, has joined the Linux Foundation. Yes, you read that correctly and no, this isn’t a joke.
At the company’s Connect conference today in New York, the house that Gates built revealed that it is joining the Linux Foundation as a platinum member. The non-profit organization has three tiers of membership, with platinum being the highest, followed by gold and silver. As a platinum member, Microsoft has committed to donating a minimum of $500,000 annually to the advancement and open source development of many different projects.
The announcement is a big deal for both Microsoft and the open source community, but there have been signs that Microsoft was changing its stance on Linux for some time. The company has gradually warmed up to its former nemesis and embraced both Linux software and the community at large in the name of problem solving and collaboration.