What HP was really saying when they "open-sourced" WebOS.
We made a really bad decision to invest 1.1 billion into Palm, we thought within 1 year we would be able to create a tablet that would take the market by storm. This didn't happen and now we have this investment doing nothing but hemorrhaging money. We asked every possible handset maker if they would like to license it from us for a ridiculous amount of money. They all said NO...we then ask them all if they would like to purchase it from us for some ridiculous amount of money and they all said NO. Now, we don't want to sell WebOS for a loss because that would make us look bad(if indeed someone did buy it and make it work)...instead we want to hedge our bets that if some entrepreneuring individual takes the code and makes something useful out of it, that we will have looked like the nice people making it free and will then have the first chance to actually put it into a product. If (and the chances are large) that it never becomes anything more we will at least have earned the good will of having opened sourced WebOS.