Between announcements about Cobol for Unix on 80386 machines and its plans to make the life of Austec International Pty and its Ryan-McFarland Corp acquisition a misery (CI No 1,041), Micro Focus Plc’s Stuart McGill appeared reluctant to express allegiance to either of the two rival factions within the warring Unix world. Somewhat stubbornly, given that the Newbury company now belongs to the AT&T-aligned Archer Group (CI No 1,040), independent was the word he constantly used to describe the corporate position, combined with the apparently self-effacing observation that we’re too small to go with either side. Translated into commercial terms, however, this simply means that the company will continue to provide products to members of both Unix clubs: Micro Focus offerings were, he insisted, deliberately created to be hardware- and even operating system independent. No question either – at least in the short term of pushing neutrality to the point of joining the Open Software Foundation, although McGill did concede that the Packaged Products arm, which sells directly to IBM, was a separate division within the company, entitled to make its own independent decisions. Meanwhile, a number of notable software and software products companies – Human Computing Resources, Lachman Associates and Unisoft included – appear to have adopted the Micro Focus stance of joining the Archers but steering clear of the Foundation. The impression going the rounds is that such firms resent the way in which the Foundation appears to seek to swipe their products lock, stock, and barrel, in the name of further development.