Originally Posted by KDarling
According to a 1990 lawsuit document, Xerox did license Apple in 1981 to create a joint Smalltalk project. Shortly afterwards, Apple began developing the Lisa computer. Apple's creation of the Mac was outside of that license.
Later in 1987, when Apple filed for copyright registration of the Mac Finder, the application described it as a derivative work based on Lisa instead of crediting Xerox for the GUI. Thus Xerox felt that the Mac copyrights should be declared invalid.
Right, however Apple only offered Xerox the right to buy
pre-IPO shares. A while back, I took the time to actually track down what happened from there:
Xerox paid $1.5 million for that 100,000 shares of Apple stock in August 1979. It split, and they sold 800,000 shares in Oct 1981 for $6,776,000, for a relatively meager profit of ~$5.2 million. (Imagine if they'd held onto them!)
Xerox was still selling and enhancing their Star when the Mac came out.
True, partly due to the court not finding a direct copyright violation, and partly because their lawyers failed to respond to some requests in time.
You seem to be splitting hairs here. There was no license agreement on the PARC computer GUI arrangement in which Apple acquired the GUI of the Macintosh.. Smalltalk was a completely different project, unrelated to the discussion. So I'm correct on the share arrangement, Xerox did get their Apple shares, right?
The Xerox board had decided to end it's PARC (star) computer project, around the time Apple announced the Macintosh, that's why Apple got most of its computer engineers to work on the Mac GUI, they weren't happy about being ignored by Xerox. In the words of the Xerox chairman at the time, "we're in the copier business, not the computer business." The Star sold only 25,000 units and was far too expensive. Two ex engineers from Xerox then formed their own company that extended the Star computer concept, after Xerox scrapped it. The subsequent work and their company was sold to IBM. The Xerox board believed that nobody would use a mouse and that computers were only for big corporations, and dropped computers from their strategy. They felt they could never compete with IBM in that area. It only decided to take legal action after it saw how successful Apple had become using the acquired GUI.
Xerox primarily failed in its law suit against Apple, because they waited years after the event to sue, leaving them outside the statute of limitations.
One thing is clear from that time. There were some pretty shady deals going on, not documented or notorised in contract, so it's hard to know what the truth really was.
Perhaps you should read some books that state in detail what was happening around that time. The Steve Jobs biography and the Pirates of Silicon Valley.
Seeing as I was in university at the time these events took place, I only took a passing interest, until I bought my first Macintosh back in 1986. Since then, I have had a keen interest on the happenings, especially when Microsoft released windows. A lot of things written about that time aren't correct, but when the players talk about it, you'll find the truth buried in there somewhere. If only Bill Gates would come clean and reveal the truth about windows, only then will we know for sure.Edited by Kr00 - 1/8/13 at 5:01pm