|FROM ||Ruben Safir
|SUBJECT ||Re: [Balug-talk] [NYLXS - HANGOUT] Its a sorry day for The Linux Journal
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Date: Wed, 24 May 2006 02:58:46 -0400
From: Ruben Safir
To: Rick Moen
Cc: balug-talk-at-lists.balug.org, hangout-at-mrbrklyn.com, rms-at-gnu.org
Subject: Re: [Balug-talk] [NYLXS - HANGOUT] Its a sorry day for The Linux Journal
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On Tue, May 23, 2006 at 11:37:29PM -0700, Rick Moen wrote:
> Quoting Ruben Safir (ruben-at-mrbrklyn.com):
> > > Hi, Ruben. I'm not quite sure what this outburst had to do with the
> > > preceding conversation?
> > >
> > The reference was to the statements, as I understood them, that no
> > Open Source advocates publically said that their software freedom was
> > any less important to them than the Free Software Advocates.
> I'm quadruply confused.
> 1. Nobody made the claim you cite. It seems drearily
> bespoke-constructed (perhaps accidentally) to be easily knocked down.
That's what I thought I read, and I responded to that. Note that I wasn't
taking any side in the argument, but I felt the need to respond. If you
weren't arguing about if Open Source advocates cared about software freedom
as much as Free Software advocates, a position which I thought Matt conceded to
you at the end of the discussion, then I miss read it completely. Its not
the first time, and I doubt it will be the last time I'll misunderstand what
I read in an email.
> 2. You seem to be referring to the film "Revolution OS", but I can't
> remember the speech you're referring to (though I appear in it, in a
> couple of places), let alone what it's supposed to show about Mr.
> Augustin, not to mention anyone else.
The only time I saw with was on a re-edited version which played on East 12th Street
in the Village. It had some humerous cuts in it about the market values of VA Linux
and other companies. In the end, it seemed that the only one who seemed to make
a clear rational presentation in the aftermath of the dot com bust, was Richard.
I did love the shots of you doing, what was it? Windows Refund day? It was cool.
Larry also made similar comments on NPR and perhaps "The Linux Show" if I recall
correctly. I remember writing a counter argument to his points after hearing it.
It is probably published in the NYLXS Journal. I'll see if I can dig it out.
> 3. Nor do you quote it (nor the same purported speech from Bruce
> Perens), nor can I seem to find any reference on the Web.
Perens, Tony Stanco and I had an intense discussion on these say issues
about 3 years back. the specific issue involved was the presentation
by MS at the egov-os event, psuhing their "shared source" initiative.
I made the point that they should not be allowed to present propreitary
software at such an event, especially with the intent to confuse the
audience. Bruce told me point blank that we doesn't want to come off
as a bunch of wackos opposed to the use of slave-ware even in the event
that it might be useful.
Its the same argument.
> 4. Most of all, your post seems a complete and utter non sequitur to
> _mine_, which it partially quoted and purported to respond to.
Oh - and I excell at that so well!
> At least Augustin is a _little_ more relevant a person to cite in
> relation to OSI than the prior rather pathetic and inaccurate reference
> to Torvalds: Although Augustin never has held any post at OSI to my
> knowledge, he at least was one of those attending the restaurant meeting
> in Silicon Valley at which the group was formed.
See my other post about Open Source and OSI.
> > I'm not certain if the very intelligent people who promote the lines
> > of reasoning such as we witnessed by "The Linux Journal" editors
> > editorial from February, the one I sent at the start of this thread,
> > fully comprehend just how much damage they are doing to their own self
> > interests for the comfort of a short term solution.
> Ah yes, Nick's troll "rant". I had a draft of the note I wrote after
> after giggling for a good long while at how many places he screwed up
> in that screed. I'm not going to send it because it's too long, and
> takes _way_ too long to reach the main point, which is that his "rant"
> is either clueless about licensing strategy or, in the alternative, is
> empty sophistry because of that omission.
> (Initially, I didn't mind it being overlong: If Nick's badly written
> rant made me suffer, I'm going to make him suffer.) But I'll have to
> write something shorter and more pointed if sending it to a magazine.
> But here it is, logorrhoea and all:
Lay it one me baby!
God - I knew I was going to be sick after Don retired as editor.
> To: ljeditor-at-ssc.com
> Dear Nick:
> Thank you for taking the reins of _Linux Journal_. It's good to see you
> aboard, and I'll be looking forward to seeing your work.
> February's spirited /etc/rant piece seems to have been written to provoke,
> deliberately insulting epithets and all -- a fine art form in itself, I
> suppose. I just sincerely hope you were _deliberately_ trolling. This
> mail is thus intended as, pardon the phrase, a reality check.
> Item: Why label eschewing of proprietary Java toolchains (Sun's,
> IBM's, BEA's, or others') as motivated by "fear"? Surely you haven't
> been a Linux user for a decade-plus without encountering other reasons
> for preferring open source / free software?
> Item: Along the sane lines, you speak of schizophrenia and other forms
> of damaged sanity in (unnamed) "free/open-source advocates". This is
> just in paragraph two, and you're already wildly calling people names,
> and skirting the libel laws mostly by failing to mention names.
> Item: What is the relevance to your assertion about "fear" of Evans
> Data Corporation's claim about the number of Eclipse developers on
> Linux, especially since Eclipse doesn't require a proprietary JRE?
> Item: Why do you imply that people eschewing proprietary JREs are
> merely "afraid" of being asked to pay a "licence fee", especially since
> you are well aware that open source has ultimately roughly zero to do
> with avoiding "licence fees", and has much more serious concerns?
> Item: Why do you posit that (unnamed) Linux open source people would
> consider Qt "evil", when Qt has famously been available under an open
> source licence for many years?
> Item: Why do you assert that anyone developing proprietary applications
> (which you refer to by the vague term "closed source") must pay licence
> fees to Trolltech, when a rudimentary understanding of licences and
> copyright law will reveal that this is incorrect as stated (regardless
> of what Trolltech AS might state)?
> Item: Why do you imply that open source advocates would necessarily and
> everywhere prefer LGPLed GTK+ over GPLed Qt, when that plainly is not
> the case?
> Item: Why would you refer to the LGPL licensing of GTK+ as permitting
> "exploiting" that codebase's developers, when it was the latter's
> strategically considered choice? Do you think those developers are
> idiots? Or perhaps insane? I would suggest, rather, that they were
> shrewdly picking a licence for a particular key component that they
> wished to see very widely adopted, with an eye towards longer-term
> licence-strategy goals for other components.
> If you honestly have not considered the notion of licence _strategy_,
> that might be a new thought for you. E.g., Free Software Foundation
> urged the Xiph.org authors of the Vorbis codec (for .ogg sound files) to
> change their licensing from GPL to LGPL to increase .ogg adoption, as a
> means of encouraging wider use of that sound format instead of the
> patent-encumbered MP3 one.
> Item: Why would you say the GNU General Public Licence embodies "the
> spirit of open source", when even FSF publishes software works under
> other licences as well?
> Item: Why would you mischaracterise the GNU GPL as requiring
> publication of one's code if "you publish software that integrates
> someone else's publicly available [GPLed] work", when you're surely well
> aware that many means of integration create no such obligation?
> Item: Why would you erroneously state that Nvidia, Inc. "violates the
> GPL" (i.e., violates third-party copyrights of GPLed work authors)
> "because it keeps some of its Linux kernel driver code secret", when
> surely you're aware that such copyright violation requires (1)
> redistribution, not merely creation, of (2) a work derivative of the
> other authors' work (which you've not shown to be the case, here)?
> Item: Why do you state that using GTK+ in accordance with its licence
> is the same thing as using the Linux kernel in a way that (per you)
> violates its licence (i.e., using it with Nvidia kernel modules)?
> Item: Why would you assert that GCJ is "nearly useless" when, among
> other things, it runs Eclipse, why you asserted in paragraph three to be
> the preferred development environment of the majority of developers on
> Item: Why, after all of this, do you close with a reference to Torvalds
> stating a strong preference for current KDE over current GNOME, when his
> reasons had nothing at all to do with licensing, when in fact both
> desktop suites themselves are identically licensed under the GNU GPL
> (only their toolkits being under diverse open-source licences),
> when either one could have sucked or not under any licence at all, and
> when Torvalds expressed _no_ opinion about the toolkits where (fairly
> minor) licensing differences can be found? You seem to be attempting to
> contrast his view with that of Icaza, and yet Icaza's reasons for
> touting LGPL's advantages on some components are well known, and are
> strategic, exactly the same as those of the Xiph.org developers.
> Item: Why do you laud Torvalds's opinion about desktop suites as
> showing that he recognises what has "practical value", impliedly
> saying that different views in other circumstances (such as Icaza's)
> fail to recognise "practical value"? Are you suggesting that a
> strategic approach to software licensing has no practical value?
> Twenty-two years of copyleft coding history seems to prove you wrong,
> On the other hand, to accentuate the positive: The one paragraph in
> your rant that seems both cogent and informative is the one at the
> bottom, that says you're Editor in Chief of Linux Journal. I'm
> sincerely glad to hear that, and hope you'll make better use of your
> editorial -- or rant -- space in the future.
>  Just to clarify, I am not personally an "advocate" of that or any
> other software or licensing regime, though I have a strong preference
> for free software, irrespective of advocacy.
> Rick M.
> balug-talk mailing list
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