Linked by AcacioMartins on Wed 6th Apr 2011 22:13 UTC
GNU, GPL, Open Source In a recent article Thom contributed his opinion to the discussion about the openness of Android that started when Google choose to withhold the source code for honeycomb, here are my 2 cents. In the article the obligations GPL puts on Google are made very clear. This makes it clear that Android is indeed an open-source project. However being open-source and being open aren't always the same thing.
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"Open" is completely meaningless
by Ian Easson on Wed 6th Apr 2011 22:51 UTC
Ian Easson
Member since:
2008-05-17

The only thing common to "Open Source", "Open Standards", "Open Interoperability", etc. is the meaningless word "open".

People who want to say that all these are the same are deluding themselves and others. They believe in a black-and-white IT world is which there are only two choices: open and closed.

Such people have been taken in by the marketing gurus of a number of large coporations, who would have you believe that they are the paragon of "openness" while their competitors are completely "closed".

The reality of IT is far more complex than these marketers want you to believe.

Reply Score: 8

mrhasbean Member since:
2006-04-03

The only thing common to "Open Source", "Open Standards", "Open Interoperability", etc. is the meaningless word "open".


Very true.

...is the code licensed under a open-source license, is the development done openly, is the project governance inclusive and how low is the threshold for involvement...


Google have fooled the suckers into believing that their projects are "open" because they are "open source", yet the only one of those criteria many pass is the first. There are other projects that do or have utilised all BUT the first of those criteria that are deemed to be totally closed, yet if contribution to and development / governance of something is done behind closed doors, then released, is it more open than something that is developed with a broad base of input then closed up?

Personally I put most weight on the latter of those criteria and very little on the first of them...

Reply Score: 2

"Open" is a worthless word by itself.
by Drumhellar on Wed 6th Apr 2011 23:31 UTC
Drumhellar
Member since:
2005-07-12

Meh. The word "Open" is used primarily as a method of dick measuring among open source proponents, i.e. "My project is more open than yours."

Really, for a project to be considered Open, it must satisfy two conditions:

First, it must, at the very least, be open source. At the very least.

Second, I must like/agree with/love the organization/project/goals of software/standard.

The first requirement is easy to define. The second one allows for movable goal posts, allowing a person to say projects he likes are open, while projects/organizations he's not a fan of to be excluded from being "Open".

Here are some examples:

"Google doesn't develop Android transparently. It is not open."
"The VP8 codec was developed behind closed doors. It is not open. However, h.264 was developed publicly, so it is open."
"h.264 requires royalties to be paid. It is not open. However, VP8 is royalty free, so it is open."
"KDE relies on QT, which is controlled and developed by a private corporation. It is not open, unlike Gnome."
"Those guys at the Gnome project are jerks and not very accepting of outside ideas, so it's not really open."

Et cetera.

I think "Open," by itself, should be stricken from the vocabulary of these discussions, as it is really only used to exclude competing projects/ideas.

(As a side note, "Bloat" should also go bye-bye, as it is really only used to describe features I don't use in a software product I don't like from a company I don't like.)

Reply Score: 14

testman Member since:
2007-10-15

I think "Open," by itself, should be stricken from the vocabulary of these discussions, as it is really only used to exclude competing projects/ideas.

Hah. In defence of the word, it is a useful emotional trigger for conveying something positive about a brand. Think "open doors", "open air", "open lifestyle" and people get warm, fuzzy feelings about something. To accuse rival products of being "closed" evokes feelings of "closed doors", missed opportunities, negativity and passive-aggression.

Google is all about portraying a "friendly" image. Everything they do: their branding, colour scheme (rainbow colours), little comics, and of course, an image (real or not) of openess.

Make no mistake, they are VERY good at marketing their own brand.

(As a side note, "Bloat" should also go bye-bye, as it is really only used to describe features I don't use in a software product I don't like from a company I don't like.)

This. A hundred-times, this!!

Reply Score: 2

Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

spot on.

I get sick to death of reading elitist arguments about which project is more "open" like it's fixed target.

What's worse is some people bleat on as if every piece of software should strive to be "open" in every sense of the term. Well that's just insane. In the real world (ie the world we live in, NOT the cyber world where our ideals seem like rational business models) companies need some control over their products if they want to stay competitive. Sometimes that means being closed to random outside contributions, sometimes that even means developing behind closed doors.

However what really matters to me (and pretty much the rest of the real world) isn't how the software was developed, it is what I can do with it once it's been released.

Can I skin, mod or hack it? Can I redistribute it? Is there restrictions on what hardware I'm allowed / licensed to install it on? Is there restrictions on what plugins / mods I can load on it or the repositories they come from? etc

Android may have a closed OS development cycle, but for users and platform developers, Android is very much open.

So yeah sure, in an idea world everything is transparent, patents don't exist and unicorns roam wild; but in the real world Google needed to assert some control to prevent Android from fragmenting more so and thus turning real world customers away and onto competing (and likely much less "open") platforms.

Reply Score: 5

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

(As a side note, "Bloat" should also go bye-bye, as it is really only used to describe features I don't use in a software product I don't like from a company I don't like.)


It can also be used to describe recent developments in a product I like that brings features I don't like. (See: GNOME 3, KDE4 etc)

Edited 2011-04-07 04:43 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

(As a side note, "Bloat" should also go bye-bye, as it is really only used to describe features I don't use in a software product I don't like from a company I don't like.)

Not quite right. Even there, there are several meanings.

For me, "bloat" is when software X needs a lot more hardware resources than software Y for the same use cases. As an example, most compositing windows managers can be considered as bloat, because even if you don't use fancy effects they'll require and use more resources than their non-compositing counterpart for the same windows management tasks. And photoshop CS3 can be considered as bloated, because GIMP 2.6 and older versions of itself need a much less powerful machine to do brush-based work.

The interpretation of this word is complicated by the fact that it can also describe a significant lack of responsiveness which seems to be caused by this resource use (even though it's generally just caused by improper use of threads or improper scheduling of said threads).

Not to be confused with "feature bloat", which is when software X has tried to implement way too much features compared to the design resources it had to implement them properly.

A typical cases of feature bloat is when the user interface of the program is not designed to hold all the features in a clean way and feels overly crowded. Think of GCC's man page.

Edited 2011-04-07 06:45 UTC

Reply Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

For me, hardware resource needs tend to be heavier or lighter as I see the software weighing down the resulting system. Bloat tends to refer to what is imposed on me by the software. An OS with non-modular install which results in a lot of installed parts that don't actually apply to the machines use versus an OS with highly modular install options; just a kernel/commandline or kernel/commandline/GUI layer versus a kernel/commandline/GUI/calculator/mediaplayer/ and so on. This also applies to dependencies for software installed on top of the minimal OS; having OpenOffice as a dependency of having a GUI versus GUI dependencies including only the relevant widgits and libraries.

The real difference I see is in how people justify the term. Use it to refer to something one doesn't like but without any technical and verifiable reasons; not good. Use it to refer to non-essential components imposed as requirnments; yeah, I'd say that's pretty bloaty.

Just my understanding and use of the term though and sadly, there is no shortage of the "not good" example of usage.

Reply Score: 2

AcacioMartins Member since:
2011-04-06

While the measure of the openness of a project indeed has subjective aspects that doesn't mean discussing it is meaningless and just because people use the word open to troll other projects doesn't mean it's impossible to have meaningful debates about it.

Reply Score: 1

_Nine_ Member since:
2010-10-13

Touché. And I think it's worth pointing out that analysts and average consumers don't give two sh*ts about any of these degrees of "open-ness." To analysts, open simply means one thing: not a closed ecosystem or, to use the popular term these days, a walled garden.

Compared to Apple and the Mac, people would say Microsoft and Windows are "open". Obviously, the Linux and UNIX communities would take issue with that. But, that's the problem with the false dichotomy implied by calling something either "open" or "closed." On the one hand, it's easy to define the extremes when you have clear examples. Most people would put Apple on the extreme end of the closed side. But where would they put Microsoft?

What Google is doing with Android is not unlike what MS does with all its Windows platforms with two key differences:
1. Google releases the source code.
2. Google doesn't charge other companies to license the platform.

These simply were disruptive moves that Google used to gain fast OEM adoption of the platform. That's all the analysts care about as it has driven the Android ecosystem. To average consumers, the primary benefits of openness are greater carrier and handset selection and a less restrictive app marketplace.

However, you easily argue that the result of these moves has been anything but open. Handset makers have created several forks of Android, which--save for the original source released by Google--essentially are like proprietary, device-specific versions of the platform.

Reply Score: 1

mtzmtulivu
Member since:
2006-11-14

OpenBSD is released under a BSD license and hence it is "open source", but you can not take their code, do as you please with it and then release it under the same name without their permission. They will come after you for trademark violations.

Linus Torvald, owns the trademark to a name "linux". You can take linux source code, do as you please with it and release it under the terms of the GPL without asking anybody for permission but Linus will come after you if you release your code with a name "linux" without his permission.

You can take BSD, GPL code and do what you please with it and release it without asking anybody for permission as long as you abide by the rules of the license but you have to ask for permission if you want to use the project's trademarked names.

FOSS licenses has nothing to do with trademarked names.

Google is just saying "Here is the code(when they release it), you can do as you please with it but you must follow our terms if you want to use our trademarked names"

Mozilla did the same thing when they forced debian to change their browser name from "firefox" to "iceweasel"

Google putting requirements on how their trademarked names are to be used falls outside FOSS requiremets.

Reply Score: 0

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

but you can not take their code, do as you please with it and then release it under the same name without their permission. They will come after you for trademark violations.


OpenBSD isn't trademarked so you can do exactly that.

FOSS licenses has nothing to do with trademarked names.


True.

Reply Score: 3

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Canonical did the same thing with all the baby-buntus that apeared early on if I remember correctly. "Sure, fork our distro and do what you like but don't represent it as being one of our *buntus and run your own repositories where you can manage source for your customizations."

Seems perfectly fair to me. It's not like Mandriva wires itself into Red Hat's repositories just because it's a Red Hat fork. I personally thing Google discouraging the fragmentation of it's distribution is a great thing even if I don't agree with other attributes of the distribution.

Fragmentation of a market resulting in many competing products relying on natural market forces of meritocracy; fantastic.

Fragmentation of a product within it's own structure resulting in many shards of questionable compatability or consumer hostile lock-in customizations; not good at all.

Reply Score: 2

Good one
by tuzor on Thu 7th Apr 2011 00:41 UTC
tuzor
Member since:
2007-08-07

Great article.
This is pretty much why I - and many, more intelligent people with me - have been saying months now.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Good one
by Laurence on Thu 7th Apr 2011 00:46 UTC in reply to "Good one"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Great article.
This is pretty much why I - and many, more intelligent people with me - have been saying months now.

The problem with this comment is you're now insinuating that all those who disagree with you are unintelligent.

Well, I say "insinuate", but it wasn't even that subtle.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Good one
by tuzor on Thu 7th Apr 2011 00:52 UTC in reply to "RE: Good one"
tuzor Member since:
2007-08-07

It's a pun aimed at a comment made by some google fanboy in a previous article.
It's also pretty true at the same time.
I don't think you're very bright if you believe that Google is open. They certainly tried very hard in the previous years to portray this image of being open, however they are being betrayed by their recent actions.

Edited 2011-04-07 00:55 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Good one
by Laurence on Thu 7th Apr 2011 01:11 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Good one"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

It's a pun aimed at a comment made by some google fanboy in a previous article.
It's also pretty true at the same time.
I don't think you're very bright if you believe that Google is open. They certainly tried very hard in the previous years to portray this image of being open, however they are being betrayed by their recent actions.

I also don't think you're very bright if you think Google are "closed".

Google are just a company.

They're a company that proactively supports open source but they're also a company that feel they need to develop behind closed doors to get their software up to scratch. So what.

Either way, Google are just a company and all this talk of how "open" or "closed" Google might be is just pure BS from everybodies part.

So how about we all just grow up and talk about technology rather than arguing the semantics of "open"? Or is "open" the new KDE/GNOME flamewar? (ie pointless never-ending debate of personal opinions)

Edited 2011-04-07 01:14 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Good one
by nt_jerkface on Thu 7th Apr 2011 02:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Good one"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Google isn't an open company, their profits come from a carefully guarded proprietary search engine.

They don't even release the source to their internal build of Linux. They also don't release the source to their online services.

But they do take couch change from their proprietary search engine profits and spend it on various open source pet projects. With these pet projects they promote the false image that they are an open source company. Linux/FOSS fans buy into this image and then set themselves up for disappointment.

Red Hat is an open source software company.

Google is a proprietary marketing company.

Evil Empire Oracle contributes over twice the amount of code to the kernel as Google.

Google is not your open source boyfriend.

Reply Score: 4

RE[5]: Good one
by TechGeek on Thu 7th Apr 2011 02:43 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Good one"
TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

I don't claim that Google is the messiah, but they also haven't done a lot of crap that Oracle has. Oracle actively tries to leech off of Red Hat's business. Google for all their closed aspects, invented their market. Kind of hard to be pissed off that they control online ads when they invented the technology. Same with decent searching. And the reason they don't ( and don't need to) release the search code source is because there is absolutely no barrier to entry. You want a better search, go invent your own. Its not like they changed the web so it only works with their search engine, ala Microsoft and IE.

Reply Score: 5

RE[6]: Good one
by galvanash on Thu 7th Apr 2011 04:55 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Good one"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

Google for all their closed aspects, invented their market. Kind of hard to be pissed off that they control online ads when they invented the technology. Same with decent searching.


I'm frankly a Google fan too - but you are stretching reality there quite a bit. Google certainly did not invent either web searching or online advertising. LOTS of companies were doing both quite successfully before they cam along. They simply ended up dominating their competition in a fairly short amount of time.

They initially did search rather well (arguably much better than those before them) and their "toned down" advertising endeared them to the public compared to their competition who at the time was using every square inch of real-estate to runs obnoxious bright-and-blinky banner ads and popups.

They single-handedly destroyed the reign of "portal" sites like yahoo, netscape.com, etc. (thank you Google!) only to turn around and replace them with what is essentially the same thing, just with an optional and somewhat more tasteful implementation. Those that don't like it simply don't use it - it isn't forced upon you.

Anyway, just saying, they certainly did things better - but they didn't invent much of anything.

Reply Score: 5

RE[6]: Good one
by nt_jerkface on Thu 7th Apr 2011 07:02 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Good one"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Oracle actively tries to leech off of Red Hat's business.


Well apart from the fact that the GPL encourages this type of undercutting I don't find what they are doing to be unethical.

It isn't as if RHEL was mostly written by Red Hat.

Red Hat bundled existing software they didn't write and sold it but Oracle is unethical for re-bundling RHEL? Red Hat knew the risk they were taking when they decided to embrace GPL software. You can't get upset at Oracle for also taking advantage of GPL software. If you don't like what Oracle is doing then your real problem is with the GPL.

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: Good one
by Laurence on Thu 7th Apr 2011 07:41 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Good one"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

OMG ntjerkface in GPL criticism shocker! it has been nearly a week since you too a pop at open source projects :p

Seriously though, you're usually the first to defend closed companies like MS and Sony yet here you are ripping Google for being the same -albeit less so. I can only guess that your complete U turn is because you actually recognise that Google are more open than most software houses, if not as much as most open source development businesses.

Reply Score: 4

RE[5]: Good one
by Valhalla on Thu 7th Apr 2011 07:14 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Good one"
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24


With these pet projects they promote the false image that they are an open source company. Linux/FOSS fans buy into this image and then set themselves up for disappointment.

Why would I be disappointed? I personally benefit from their open source offerings such as VP8, Chrome, Google summer of code, Go programming language etc, just like I benefit from their free services like gmail, youtube etc

As for Google as a company, I'm not under any illusion that they are an altruistic organisation, they are in it to make money from their search engine. But unlike with companies like Microsoft I actually feel that I'm given something back (above mentioned projects) for using Google's search engine instead of their competitors (excluding the fact that it's the best search engine).

And also unlike Microsoft and Apple, they compete without resorting to patent threats/litigation.

So yeah, Google isn't the open source poster boy, but it sure is heads and shoulders above the likes of Microsoft and Apple.

Reply Score: 5

RE[5]: Good one
by Laurence on Thu 7th Apr 2011 07:19 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Good one"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

You're still missing my point. So what if Google isn't as open as redhat. They're still more open than Apple and MS (for example)

I don't think anyone in their right mind sees any company as perfec. They just support whatever business provides the services that best suites their needs. For many people that's Google.

This is what annoys my about this debate. In the real world this discussion is completely irrelevant as nobody actually gives a shit about who is more open. So why are we even arguing about public perception in regards to who's more open.

Besides. As already stated, open is a swinging term. You talk about kernel source code contributions on comparison to Oracle yet neglect to compare the fact that Google develop massively more open than Oracle. But again, which consumers really gives a shit when buying the product?

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Good one
by nt_jerkface on Thu 7th Apr 2011 14:54 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Good one"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

No I get your point, and I don't think Google can be considered an open company in any general sense of the word. Their key properties are developed and kept behind closed doors. It would be like calling Exxon a green company because they spend .01% of their profits on clean energy research.

So why are we even arguing about public perception in regards to who's more open.


It's OSNews? I would be watching sportscenter if I didn't want to blow my brains out after 5 minutes.

You talk about kernel source code contributions on comparison to Oracle yet neglect to compare the fact that Google develop massively more open than Oracle.


They both have open source pet projects for which they allow contributions while hauling in cash from their proprietary revenue sources.

I have no problem with a company relying on proprietary revenue and in fact consider it one of the best ways of funding open source. What I don't like is how Google tries to portray themselves as some open source loving company. If they loved open source then they would release the source to their internal build of Linux.

As least Oracle isn't trying to portray themselves in a disingenuous manner. They're honest about maximizing revenue from open source while keeping their key properties proprietary.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Good one
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 7th Apr 2011 15:00 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Good one"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I have no problem with a company relying on proprietary revenue and in fact consider it one of the best ways of funding open source. What I don't like is how Google tries to portray themselves as some open source loving company. If they loved open source then they would release the source to their internal build of Linux.


This makes no sense. Google DOES like open source. They sponsor god knows how many projects, and have turned Linux in the most popular mobile platform - there where everybody else failed miserably at doing so. You can say that they are not as open as some other companies (for instance, like Red Hat), but that doesn't mean they don't like open.

That's like saying just because I, as a heterosexual, can easily admit some men are attractive, I'm suddenly no longer heterosexual.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Good one
by mcking on Thu 7th Apr 2011 14:19 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Good one"
mcking Member since:
2010-06-03

Google isn't an open company, their profits come from a carefully guarded proprietary search engine.

They don't even release the source to their internal build of Linux. They also don't release the source to their online services.

But they do take couch change from their proprietary search engine profits and spend it on various open source pet projects. With these pet projects they promote the false image that they are an open source company. Linux/FOSS fans buy into this image and then set themselves up for disappointment.

Red Hat is an open source software company.

Google is a proprietary marketing company.

Evil Empire Oracle contributes over twice the amount of code to the kernel as Google.

Google is not your open source boyfriend.



Well, Google doesn't release the source for their search engine or email services or their internal Linux builds because they don't have to, and I don't think that they should be judged to a higher standard for doing exactly what a *lot* of companies do.

There are a lot of companies who take CentOS or Debian or Ubuntu, customize it, swap out kernel patches, and run their own internal build specific to their needs. The GPL only requires you to provide the source for any modifications to anyone *outside* of your company that uses your build. If you use it in-house you don't have to provide it to anyone.

Now, if they were to take an internal build, install it onto a device like a network appliance or an Android phone and then sell you the device, then yes, they need to make that source available somewhere to you as a customer (not necessarily to the whole world or even the upstream, as some people seem to think). The fact that they do provide the source for Android to the world is important.

Is it annoying that they chose to delay the code drop for Honeycomb a bit? Yes. It is annoying that they also started putting restrictions on the phone manufacturers in order to get them to get them all more in line with Android as an ecosystem that needs to move together and not in 10 directions? Yes. But in the long run it is their project and they can run it as they see fit, and I don't blame them at all.

So what if Oracle contributes more back to the kernel? Oracle isn't a friend to Open Source, they famously closed down their OpenSolaris project (among several other Open Source projects, but OpenSolaris was the biggie) when they bought Sun. Google is doing more than a lot of other companies do. Their Summer of Code project alone is very important to the Open Source community.

What does it mean to be an "Open" company? Why should any for-profit company work completely in the "Open". Every company who works in this space has to make a profit somewhere. Arguably the most "open" company in history, Sun made money on hardware and services, so they could release the source for their OS and a lot of their other products (Glassfish, OpenSSO, OpenDS). Google makes money off of search and has enough to start these side projects and give them away for free, is able to release the source for some but not all of them, and you're still complaining???

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Good one
by nt_jerkface on Thu 7th Apr 2011 15:20 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Good one"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Well, Google doesn't release the source for their search engine or email services or their internal Linux builds because they don't have to, and I don't think that they should be judged to a higher standard for doing exactly what a *lot* of companies do.


I don't think they should be judged by a higher standard but I also don't think they should be viewed as being above other companies or as an open source loving company.

If you use it in-house you don't have to provide it to anyone.


Yea I'm aware of that, I've written dozens of blog posts on the GPL. My point has nothing to do with the license. By keeping their build of Linux internal they are showing their true stripes. They keep software internal that would not affect their business if released. They release source on a per-marketing-campaign basis.

So what if Oracle contributes more back to the kernel? Oracle isn't a friend to Open Source, they famously closed down their OpenSolaris project


Did you ever go to the OpenSolaris forums? I did, it was a wasteland where a few Sun employees would occasionally talk to each other. Just because Oracle chose to not fund all of Sun's pet projects does not make them an enemy to open source. OpenSolaris was a failed project.

Let's not forget that Schwartz bankrupted the company by going on an open source buying spree. Oracle comes along and saves the company from bankruptcy but they are dicks for not funding every little project? Yea that makes sense. Nothing stopped Google or Red Hat from building their own OpenSolaris fork. Maybe they are dicks too? Let's just forget about BTRFS and how Oracle contributes more to the kernel than Canonical and Google combined.

Their Summer of Code project alone is very important to the Open Source community.


Hey let's use some couch change to get students to write code on the cheap. BP should have had a Summer of Cleaning Beaches.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Good one
by Soulbender on Thu 7th Apr 2011 04:27 UTC in reply to "Good one"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

This is pretty much why I - and many, more intelligent people with me - have been saying months now.


You'd think someone so intelligent would know the difference between "what" and "why".

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Good one
by lucas_maximus on Thu 7th Apr 2011 11:22 UTC in reply to "RE: Good one"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

I don't see anything wrong with that sentence, unless you are doing grammatical nitpicking ... if you are grow up.

Edited 2011-04-07 11:23 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Good one - seems valid
by jabbotts on Thu 7th Apr 2011 12:32 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Good one"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Removing the apeal to popularity ("and many") and apeal to authority "more intelligent people with me";

"This is why I ... have been saying for months."

versus

"This is what I ... have been saying for months."
"This is why I ... have been saying [XYZ] for months."
"For months I've been saying this because of [XYZ]"

In the first case, the starting idea (why one is doing something) does not lead to the ending idea (what one has been doing). I'm the last person to get on someone about spelling and grammar but in this case, the statement really is missing the critical bridging idea. I don't think it invalidates the person's overall point but it does have potential to cause confusion because since it leaves the reader to gess at what [XYZ] is.

People who jump on one for spelling of a word or miss-placed/miss-used comma; yeah, that's really just nitpicking without adding any value to the discussion. In this case, it was actually a missing bridging idea who's presence would have added to the discussion.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Good one - seems valid
by lucas_maximus on Thu 7th Apr 2011 12:35 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Good one - seems valid"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

It is perfectly clear what he said ... and grammatics aside ... I think it is actually more appropriate and to me make a lot of sense logically.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Good one - seems valid
by jabbotts on Thu 7th Apr 2011 13:16 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Good one - seems valid"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

That's fine. I'm not going to demand you interpret his writing in any specific way.

I only suggest that other's may have equaly valid reason for stumbling over the discord in the sentance and that pointing out as much is not in the same category as nitpicking over spelling or a missplaced comma.

Outside of that, debating grammar is as stimulating as mowing the lawn so I'll leave it at that and move on to more tech focused topics.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Good one
by Soulbender on Thu 7th Apr 2011 14:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Good one"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

if you are grow up.


Ah, growing up. Is that when you state your own intellectual superiority on internet forums?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Good one
by nt_jerkface on Thu 7th Apr 2011 15:47 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Good one"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Unrelated but I always think of Charlie and the Chocolate factory when I see your avatar. The chick who chews gum and then turns blue.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Good one
by Soulbender on Thu 7th Apr 2011 18:06 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Good one"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

I can't tell if I should be flattered or insulted.
Think I would have preferred being compared to Wonka though.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Good one
by nt_jerkface on Thu 7th Apr 2011 20:04 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Good one"
nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

I can't tell if I should be flattered or insulted.


Neither, you just have a blue hue in that picture. Maybe it is more noticeable on my monitor.

Reply Score: 2

Android Contributors' Workflow
by JAlexoid on Thu 7th Apr 2011 01:24 UTC
JAlexoid
Member since:
2009-05-19

Android doesn't accept contributions from third parties


http://source.android.com/source/submit-patches.html

It's a tedious process, but available nonetheless...

Reply Score: 4

When it doubt, fork it out
by nt_jerkface on Thu 7th Apr 2011 02:38 UTC
nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

Once Chinese companies are ready to roll out the cheap tablets they aren't going to like Google's new approach.

I'd love to see a company show some nuts and fork Android and provide their own app store or cut a deal with Amazon. Once the software gets refined Google will start looking like an unneeded middle man.

Reply Score: 2

RE: When it doubt, fork it out
by JAlexoid on Thu 7th Apr 2011 07:20 UTC in reply to "When it doubt, fork it out"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Once Chinese companies are ready to roll out the cheap tablets they aren't going to like Google's new approach.

I'd love to see a company show some nuts and fork Android and provide their own app store or cut a deal with Amazon. Once the software gets refined Google will start looking like an unneeded middle man.


Don't count on it. Out of hundreds of companies that can manufacture a tablet or a phone are maybe a few that manufacture non reference or knock-off devices. I personally know 4 companies.
Out of those none are willing to invest into software. With the exception of Meizu. One could make a deal with Amazon. And none are willing to make the plunge.

And they are ready. The manufacturing lines are prepared to spit out XOOM and Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1(the pre iPad2 version) clones. They are waiting for the Honeycomb code drop and some are taking XOOM's ROM as a testing platform.

Believe you me, the delay of the code drop is seriously delaying their crap from being mass produced and swamping the market. And people at Google know it. Those iPad knock-offs have really had a negative effect on Android's image.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Those iPad knock-offs have really had a negative effect on Android's image.


Android already has a poor image with developers and so far consumers haven't been that interested in Android tablets. I really don't think an ASUSOS would make that much of a difference at this point.

Reply Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

and so far consumers haven't been that interested in Android tablets


Mmm. Reminds me of what people said about the early Android phones like the G1.

Reply Score: 1

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Android already has a poor image with developers


You are basing it on what? A "study" of 250 developers? The fact, that some high profile developers like iOS more?
Being constantly at startup related events, like StartupWeekend, iPhone is seriously loosing out to Android in developer interest.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: When it doubt, fork it out
by pepa on Fri 8th Apr 2011 17:41 UTC in reply to "RE: When it doubt, fork it out"
pepa Member since:
2005-07-08

I own what you call an iPad knock-off, and it's a really useful device (apart from the battery life :-D). The point is, Android works great on it, in spite of the less-than-optimal hardware. And it was really cheap, and the Android version low (1.6). The Android 2.2 on my phone I find less satisfactory, so I don't think you can say the cheap tablets give Android a bad name. I would say Android needs more work in order to make it a better phone OS.

Reply Score: 2

Something else...
by tuzorv2 on Thu 7th Apr 2011 06:55 UTC
tuzorv2
Member since:
2011-04-07

Here's some equally interesting articles about how open Google really is.

http://techcrunch.com/2011/04/06/android-chief-andy-rubin-nothings-...

http://searchengineland.com/skyhook-wireless-sues-google-you-lie-ab...

Oh and don't make fun of Thom because you'll get the Google treatment.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Something else...
by JAlexoid on Thu 7th Apr 2011 07:30 UTC in reply to "Something else..."
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Nice! Quoting the Trollcrunch.

Here's another "fun statistic":
http://yared.com/2011/04/why-techcrunch-is-over.html

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Something else...
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 7th Apr 2011 07:42 UTC in reply to "RE: Something else..."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

What's funny is that he calls me a Google shill, yet we also reported quite detailed on the whole SkyHook thing, including an interview with its CEO so he could tell his side of the story.

http://www.osnews.com/story/23840/Interview_Skyhook_CEO_Ted_Morgan_...

That's what so funny about these trolls accusing me of being a Google fanboy (the claim du jour): normal people, with more than two braincells to rub together, can clearly see these trolls are talking out of their ass.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Something else...
by henderson101 on Thu 7th Apr 2011 09:12 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Something else..."
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

That's what so funny about these trolls accusing me of being a Google fanboy (the claim du jour): normal people, with more than two braincells to rub together, can clearly see these trolls are talking out of their ass.


I think the issue is - you have strong opinions and put them across here in such a horribly jovial and absolute fashion, people take offence. It quite often feels like you have the following inner conversation :

"Okay.. {current topic} is getting boring.. who can I piss off this week.. hmm.... I know... {insert: technology/subject Thom knows a few basic facts about}"

Sometimes you get it right, sometimes you sound like a preacher, sometimes - like on this one, you are simply wrong. This article is the truth: Source being open is only one element in an Open project. There you go - new term - "Open Project" : a project that uses completely open methods for development. cf: Haiku etc.

Edited 2011-04-07 09:13 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Something else...
by Soulbender on Sat 9th Apr 2011 22:18 UTC in reply to "Something else..."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

I fail to notice any improvements in your new version of yourself.

Reply Score: 2