Microsoft’s Shared Source Initiative seems like an odd mix for the company when it works openly and a clever shot across the bow of open source when it works selfishly. How can the rest of us reconcile both positions? Microsoft ex-employee Stephen Walli shares his perspectives on the Shared Source Initiative from within and without the company.
Perspectives on the Shared Source Initiative
2005-03-28 Microsoft 11 Comments
First, recognize that Shared Source isn’t one program with one license. Shared Source is an umbrella program for all source sharing programs from Microsoft.
*I* couldn’t agree more. But then I don’t work there (anymore). They could certainly do more to structure the program, but part of that is history and evolution, and part of that is defining the discussion in their own terms.
For anyone who’s interested, the director of the shared source initiative over at MS is blogging now: http://blogs.msdn.com/jasonmatusow/ Cheers.
My naive, non-lawyerly reading of the IronPython “Shared Source” license is that it probably meets the current/old standards for OSI approval. In fact, it seems like an X.11 license except for defensive clauses against breach of contract and patent claims, a mind-numbing reference to government contracts, and a mysterious clause at the end:
“That all rights not expressly granted to you in this license are reserved.”
But it’s not clear what rights that might be referring to in light of the opening statement:
“You may use the Software for any commercial or noncommercial purpose, including distributing derivative works.”
After reading the shared source license, you can only conclude that it’s a lot more free than the GPL.
This depends on what you define as “free”. The GPL is more free and at the same time less free than the BSD License for example. It is more free in that it forces derivatives also to be free, it is less free in that it does not allow you to do whatever you wish with it.
Freedom is a term of definition. Which country would you call more free, one where you are allowed to shoot people or one where this action is restricted?
An anarchy for example is the absence of any authoryties, no police, no government, no judges. Is living in such a country really free? No, because ONE rule is still there: “The strongest one is right”
So you can see, “free” has to be defined properly, before you can declare something as more or less free than something else.
I use the standard definition of free, not the made up definition of free to fulfill political motives.
I suppose if someone was completely strung out on crack they might come to that conclusion.
Hah, with a nick like Sam Kinison you should know a thing about crack.
Free has already been defined, and the FSF and it’s drones can’t do anything to change it.
Freedom means simply, the ability to do whatever you want, whenever you want.
LIMITED FREEDOM is what you’ve described geri.
Well, the author doesnt appear to share your optimism regarding the freedom of the shared source licenses. He does mention a wide range of licenses that vary in regards to licensing terms and eligibility.
“Free has already been defined, and the FSF and it’s drones can’t do anything to change it.”
It really sounds like youre having trouble distinguishing between free speech and free beer.