Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 11th May 2011 20:35 UTC
Google It was inevitable, of course, and rightfully so: Google is having its big I/O conference, so we have to talk about the lack of Honeycomb's source code. While not violating any licenses, the lack of source code doesn't sit well with many - including myself - so it only makes sense people are asking Google about it. Andy Rubin confirmed we're never going to see Honeycomb's sources as a standalone release. He also explained what 'open' means for Android.
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Comment by vivainio
by vivainio on Wed 11th May 2011 20:54 UTC
vivainio
Member since:
2008-12-26

Bigger problem than open development is the fact that all the work Google puts into Android is entirely useless for the rest of the Linux world (i.e. the part of the world that is not prone to put their eggs to the Dalvik basket).

Whether they disclose the source code is no biggie, if the source code overall is useless.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by vivainio
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 11th May 2011 20:56 in reply to "Comment by vivainio"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Well, that's an odd argument. I mean, isn't the fact that Google is using a *different* approach using *existing* open source code the whole *point* behind open source?

Reply Parent Score: 4

v RE[2]: Comment by vivainio
by mrhasbean on Wed 11th May 2011 21:25 in reply to "RE: Comment by vivainio"
RE[2]: Comment by vivainio
by Soulbender on Wed 11th May 2011 21:31 in reply to "RE: Comment by vivainio"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Only when Linux does it. Then it is necessary and innovative (see Poettering et al).
When others do it it is detrimental.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by vivainio
by Beta on Wed 11th May 2011 22:41 in reply to "RE: Comment by vivainio"
Beta Member since:
2005-07-06

Well, that's an odd argument. I mean, isn't the fact that Google is using a *different* approach using *existing* open source code the whole *point* behind open source?

Forking is a large part of FOSS.
But so is upstreaming, the concept of making changes and offering them up to the parent project for inclusion. A few complaints directed at Android have been that it is using a different method for handling 'handoffs' (wakelock), and it's rumoured with 3.1 to have a different USB driver stack to Linux.

This means more work to keep Android in sync with Linux kernels, and that drivers developed for Android devices don't automatically get supported in Linux.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by vivainio
by vivainio on Thu 12th May 2011 06:01 in reply to "RE: Comment by vivainio"
vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26

Well, that's an odd argument. I mean, isn't the fact that Google is using a *different* approach using *existing* open source code the whole *point* behind open source?


I wasn't making any philosophical argument about open source in general - just saying, in very concrete terms, why I don't like Android.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Comment by vivainio
by shmerl on Thu 12th May 2011 00:39 in reply to "Comment by vivainio"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Yes, this is probably one of the biggest flaws in Android from general Linux perspective. Meego is much better in this sense.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Comment by vivainio
by bouhko on Thu 12th May 2011 01:17 in reply to "Comment by vivainio"
bouhko Member since:
2010-06-24

If you go back in history a bit, one of the main reason Stallmann started the whole copyleft stuff was because he was pissed because he wrote a piece of software, distributed it under a public domain license. A company then modified it and Stallmann asked them for their modifications, which they didn't want to disclose.

The point is, the roots of the Free Software movement are NOT community development. It's just that you have the four basic freedoms and that you can look at the code and do whatever the hell you want with it. This is basically a guarantee that you won't depend on a software vendor to support your software, you can do it yourself.

You should also read this interview[1] from Linus (on a french website, but interview is in english) where he says he's completely fine with Android and that forks are a big part of Open Source.

I mean, I think community development is nice, but we should stop the confusion between "community software" and "open source/free software". Some projects are both, some are not, but you DON'T have to have a community for your software to be open source. If you don't agree, start your own "Community software license" (I'm not ironic, that might be interesting).

[1] http://linuxfr.org/news/linus-torvalds-l%E2%80%99interv...

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by vivainio
by _xmv on Thu 12th May 2011 02:26 in reply to "RE: Comment by vivainio"
_xmv Member since:
2008-12-09

Linus is controlled by lobbies, he just can't change Linux into BSD. If he could he'd do it I suppose.

As you might expect he's the number one person who could sue anyone violating the GPLv2 in Linux, but he'll never do that. Too damaging for his image and the lobbies of various companies.

He'll always be fine to anyone closing the source of non-GPL software since its allowed and favorite businesses.

Pretty sharp contrast with Stallman.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: Comment by vivainio
by Oliver on Thu 12th May 2011 08:15 in reply to "Comment by vivainio"
Oliver Member since:
2006-07-15

The rest of the 'Linux world'? There isn't that much Linux in Android as you may think. There is even as much BSD in Android, e.g. the mksh (mirbsd) shell, libc (OpenBSD/NetBSD), different tools, etc. pp.

Reply Parent Score: 3