That's why it's so sweet to see the bittersweet couple embrace each other in a loving license agreement this week. Google is licensing the Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync protocol, so that Gmail and Google Calendar users can synchronize their Googlish contact information to their cell phones.
The view from Mountain View
On Google's part, it's business as usual. "Last year we released a [sync] tool for Blackberry devices," says Google Mobile's product manager Marcus Foster, and today "we're offering more people easy access to their information on the go". In addition to the Research In Motion
The flip side
Microsoft puts a different spin on the same news. The deal is "a clear acknowledgment of the innovation taking place at Microsoft," says licensing VP Horacio Gutierrez. "This agreement is also a great example of Microsoft's openness to generally license our patents under fair and reasonable terms so long as licensees respect Microsoft intellectual property." (Emphasis mine)
Oh dear. That sounds awfully defensive, Mr. Softy -- maybe even bitter. The times, they are a-changin', and perhaps you feel forced to change old habits just to keep up. Just remember that Google wanted access to your enormous installed user base, not necessarily to this particular technology for its own sake.
Get a room already.