Microsoft gives go-ahead to open-source Web services

Microsoft is pledging not to assert its patents pertaining to nearly three dozen Web services specifications--a move designed to ease concerns among developers by creating a legal environment more friendly to open-source software.

The software giant published on Tuesday the Microsoft Open Specification Promise (OSP) on its Web site. The document is meant to encourage use of Web services technology, Microsoft said.

The OSP allows a third party to create software, or an "implementation," based on a set of technical guidelines grouped under the Web services rubric. It does not require people to sign a license and covers distributors and other people who use a non-Microsoft implementation.,39047352,61952461-39094244p,00.htm