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RMS: De Icaza Traitor to Free Software Community
on Thu 24th Sep 2009 13:35 UTC, submitted by
If you don't like personal, blog-style reporting, you might want to skip this item. A few days ago, during a speech at Software Freedom Day in Boston, Richard Stallman has, at least in my book, crossed a line that I thought he would never cross.
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RE: For what it's worth
on Fri 25th Sep 2009 23:58 UTC in reply to "
RE: For what it's worth
Remember how poorly Adobe used to support Flash? Maybe this will remind you:
I don't need reminding, but then I have little use for Flash myself. Java also had poor Linux support for a very long time.
There has always been demand within and outside the FOSS community for an alternative to flash. The FOSS community should have produced something like HTML5 a decade ago.
There's really a collision between open standards and what you might call "the FOSS community". And I repeat what I wrote about large vehicles - monolithic ones, if you like - which deliver those standards. There's a reluctance by the people actually writing the code - crucially different from "demand" - to deliver a de-facto platform for shiny Web-based applications. Mozilla have tried a few times and have had to suffer criticism about fragmenting the Web.
And what if the FSF were to propose an alternative to Flash? We see already that large companies like Google won't fully support open alternatives like Theora (with respect to Flash video), and I imagine that any call by the FSF would be met by the usual jeering from people about them being unrealistic or "purists" (or whatever), while others demand the replication of proprietary formats and tools.
That's why the whole GPL ideology is silly. They can't meet the demands of users but expect the whole world to adopt the GPL.
The GPL is all about giving the users control. Remember this when the day comes that someone you know has lost control of, say, the means to access their own data: it will not seem so "silly" then.
The GPL software development model does not work for most software and never will. Calling proprietary software unethical when you can't provide an alternative is a joke. Software to some may be a religion but for the rest of the world it is a tool.
You confuse software development methodology with the ideology. Whether you believe in the supposed efficiency benefits of open source - Eric Raymond-advocated bazaar-style development - is independent of whether you expect others to share their derived works with other people, which is what the GPL is all about.
If you can't provide a better drill then go home and try to make a new one. Don't sit at the construction site berating the manager to use different tools when you can't provide an alternative.
You could have said the same thing about the Free Software desktop. Apart from people who are wedded to proprietary Windows applications (referring to that issue of control, above), and apart from somewhat superficial detractors (who most likely frequent OSNews more than the average person), it's already a better drill than the one from Redmond. Sadly, those people developing KDE and GNOME, who have the ability to make a rival to Flash, are too busy with their desktop widgets to give it a shot.
But it's not the GPL that prevents all this from happening, contrary to what some people would have you believe.
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