[Novalug] [Ma-linux] [FOSE] Starting the discussion
James Ewing Cottrell 3rd
JECottrell3 at Comcast.NET
Thu Oct 23 12:59:31 EDT 2008
Sorry, I didn't want to get into the gun debate. How much control
is/should be necessary is debatable. But I think that most people on
both sides of the fence would balk at selling firearms to a person they
knew was going to use it for robbery or murder.
And maybe the degree of the comparison was off base too. Software
Hoarding doesn't compare with Robbery or Murder, but it is Wrong
I can't believe that anyone here seriously compares Windows to UNIX or
The latter is Clearly Superior. Perhaps the goal at FOSE is to explain
WHY. Microsoft only has $N programmers. We have all the rest.
Nick Danger wrote:
> This is an interesting conversation but since the subject has FOSE in
> it, I should state it will never ever happen in a FOSE booth. You have 2
> seconds on average per person that walks by. If you are LUCKY you have
> 15-30 seconds to give a quick chat/give some swag. On very very rare
> occasion you get someone more talky, but you can't abandon your other
> booth mates to the hordes while you have a mind bending talk on software
> licenses. I just wanted to get that out there.
> Your gun analogy is terrible. Again, you are saying "right" and "wrong"
> as if they are absolutes. While I think almost (ALMOST) everyone here
> can agree on a set of circumstances that are right, and a set that are
> wrong, there will be a bunch that are in disagreement. So its right for
> a programmer to release my software. Its wrong for a company to ignore
> client requests to fix it when they paid money for it. But me dictating
> what you can and cannot do with your stuff. Plus guns bring up the whole
> whichever side you agree with thing. Are they rebels or freedom
> fighters? Its an ugly analogy. Right to use doesn't really equate to
> right to life.
> James Ewing Cottrell 3rd wrote:
> >>I you believe that Software Hoarding is Wrong, then allowing others
> to take your code and distribute it as a Closed Product is Wrong.
> How can you horde an infinite quantity? So I take code X, wrap it in a
> box and sell it. Why would people buy X instead of just getting it for
> free if the developer is giving it away? (All value added options aside,
> I'm saying there is no difference between free X and pay X, other then
> the cost. And the box it comes in :-)
> >> Finally, the REAL moment of Freedom is choosing whether to release
> something under GPL or not.
> >> Actually, it doesn't bother me that the GPL "restricts freedom" --
> it prohibits people from doing things which *I* consider uncool.
> The real freedom is deciding to actually write any code, or eat another
> donut. I am free to do something myself, or pay someone, or have a
> donut, wait a while and see what happens. And right now, the donut
> option is winning. Although then my options will probably become Tums or
> And if you want to restrict me from doing things you consider "uncool"
> then thats your perogative. I, however, do not care what you do with my
> code. Make millions? Good for you! Hope you donate some to charity.
>>> And Action is either Right/Logical or Wrong/Illogical.
> We are humans. We have many many massive shades of gray between the two
> extremes. If actions are either right/wrong, what would you call me
> spending hundreds of my own dollars, and days of my own time, to go
> stand around a 10x10 booth giving out free CDs to people I'll probably
> never see again? Other then that I enjoy it, I have yet to see any
> benefit. Is enjoyment right or wrong? Do I have to wait until my
> enjoyment level crosses a threshold and triggers an alert? People are
> people, and everyone is different. Whats right for you isn't necessarily
> right for me, or anyone else. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't.
> (who is going to have another donut, and pretend its lunchtime)
> James Ewing Cottrell 3rd wrote:
>> You seem to Miss The Point. Ethics and Logic Give No Quarter. And
>> Action is either Right/Logical or Wrong/Illogical.
>> If you believe that Software Hoarding is Wrong, then allowing others
>> to take your code and distribute it as a Closed Product is Wrong.
>> An analogy might help here. Using my argument above, the GPL is
>> somewhat like a gun manufacturer requiring that the purchaser (SAY
>> that they will...) not use the gun for illegal purposes, while the BSD
>> license is like what we have now.
>> Finally, the REAL moment of Freedom is choosing whether to release
>> something under GPL or not.
>> Actually, it doesn't bother me that the GPL "restricts freedom" -- it
>> prohibits people from doing things which *I* consider uncool.
>> That is the Price of using the software. Given that people are trying
>> to restrict ownership (I bought it, I can do what I want) anyway with
>> Licensing (no you can't, you can run it only on CPU Serial 364521. On
>> Tuesday. Or if it's Dark.), it seems like a small price to pay.
>> greg pryzby wrote:
>>> GPL is ONE license and there is an argument that some serious
>>> developers I respect say isn't truly free because it requires certain
>>> things. BSD is a free license because once the code has left your
>>> hands, anyone can take it and do what they want. That is true
>>> freedom. It is the freedom to let someone do what they want with it
>>> and not force them to leave it open. They can take it and not make
>>> the code available and sell it also, without a change (iirc).
>>> I DO NOT tell people what to do or what is right, as Varol said, that
>>> is the decision of the developer(s).
>>> I remember a heated exchange when the developer told people to take
>>> his code, only release binaries and sell it-- that is fine by him. He
>>> wrote the code for himself and shared it because he wanted to. He
>>> could care less if others liked/used it.
>>> Personally, that is giving true freedom.
>>> Gregory Maxwell wrote:
>>>> On Sat, Oct 4, 2008 at 6:47 PM, Varol Okan
>>>> <varokan at movingsatellites.com> wrote:
>>>>> Serge, remember when people used to have train sets to play with.
>>>>> No one
>>>>> really did it to instill freedom in other people, but the motive
>>>>> most of
>>>>> the time centered around hobby, fun and relaxation.
>>>>> As the author of an GPLed SW I did it not mainly to give people free
>>>>> speech source code, I did it to follow my interests and talents.
>>>>> Don't get me wrong, I am all for FLOSS, however as a user of FLOSS
>>>>> SW I
>>>>> am interested mostly in usability. So yes, I do uses closed source
>>>>> codecs/driver if I have to.
>>>>> So when you say every one in the FLOSS community did it ONLY to
>>>>> freedom, I think you can count me out. I did it mainly to solve a
>>>>> personal need, follow my hobby and enjoy, relax while doing some
>>>>> productive things for every one to use.
>>>> If you really do not care about other people's freedom at all, why use
>>>> the GPL? Why not use some mild shareware license? Then you get to
>>>> scratch your itch *and* you might get paid a little beer money too?
>>>> Maybe your answer was so that you could integrate some pre-existing
>>>> GPLed software and you needed a compatible license. But if thats the
>>>> case then you could trace the chain back and find someone who cares
>>>> about freedom at the other end.
>>>> Or perhaps you wanted to maximize the chances that someone else will
>>>> chip in? But there you're taking a bet that they'll care about
>>>> freedom even if you do not. ... Or perhaps you wanted to be
>>>> included in a GNU/Linux distribution that only(/mostly) ships Free
>>>> I think that pretty much any way you cut it, you pretty much can't
>>>> make a rational explanation for the existence of GPLed software
>>>> without explaining that some people are trying to promote a particular
>>>> kind of freedom for computer users. We don't need to claim that all
>>>> GPL users have this purpose, but some very clearly do… and unless it's
>>>> mentioned the whole system seems a little less sensible and a little
>>>> more suspicious.
>>>> Some people call this promotion 'political', but I think thats just
>>>> really a label we slap on pragmatic efforts to achieve practical goals
>>>> which we don't share ourselves. :)
>>>>> Now that said I am grateful FLOSS and people defending it. I am just
>>>>> opposed to the radical view of black vs white, good vs evil, FLOSS vs
>>>>> closed SW.
>>>> Most people that I've met who promote free software are also not fond
>>>> of BLACK/WHITE style distinctions.
>>>> For example, virtually all of us are using CPUs whos designs are
>>>> secret, proprietary, patented, etc but the CPU, coded in a high level
>>>> design language, is no less software by virtue of being etched into
>>>> silicon, by at least one rational school of thought. Basically it's
>>>> impossible for someone with an absolute black/white position to avoid
>>>> contradiction and hypocrisy.
>>>> When people draw shades of grey in very different positions from
>>>> ourselves we sometimes mistake that with a rigid black and white
>>>> phenomena (the same as the "they all look alike" view on people of
>>>> other races from people not accustomed to dealing with them). But if
>>>> we listen carefully with tolerance and and open mind, we can usually
>>>> find the nuance in the position of those we do not agree with.
>>>> Ma-linux mailing list
>>>> Ma-linux at calypso.tux.org
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