Re: Oracle v. Google jury returns partial verdict, favoring Oracle

From: Pól <Pó>
Date: Thu, 10 May 2012 05:38:42 +0100
Message-ID: <>

On 10/05/12 02:00, Snit wrote:

>> All of which of course does *_not_* mean that Open Source is "bogus".
>> FLOSS is what it says it is - it does what it says on the tin - it's
>> open about what it is, there's no lying - you can see the bugs up-front
>> - you don't have vendor lock-in.

> This is not entirely true. The concept of "open source" is true and honest,
> but when they use the GPL and demand you follow its restrictions, and thus
> reduce what you can "freely" do with the code, it is disingenuous to call it
> "Free" (other than in price). They pretend it is about freedom when it
> really is a form of IP protection, albeit a rather open set of protections.
> Still, one is obligated to follow the restrictions set by the IP license
> being used (in terms of those who use the term "Free", this generally some
> flavor of the GPL).

You are forgetting about the *BSD licences, which are, to all intents and purposes, Public Domain. But it still doesn't answer my question to the OP about FLOSS being "bogus". Those who choose to release their software under the GPL know exactly what they're getting into, as do those who use it. It's not "bogus" to impose (very minor) conditions on those to whom you grant the right to use your software for any purpose whatsoever along with the added bonus of your fabulous code.

I don't wish to rehash the arguments that I used to read on COLA a decade ago - I'm from cdos myself - I would just say that, AFAIC, if FLOSS (and in particular the GPL) is "bogus" then you could easily say that all software is - Public Domain and *BSD possibly excepted.

> If they really wanted it to be "Free", they would place the work in the
> public domain and ensure that there are no restrictions on the code they
> produce. This is not what they want - they want to limit "freedom".

The argument that even free societies have to impose restrictions... rehash...

> To be clear, however, I have *no* problem with this... people who create IP should
> be able to define under what uses and restrictions people can use their
> product. For example, I cannot get a best selling novel and change the
> names of the characters and alter a few other details and then sell it as my
> own - this would be plagiarism and it would be going against the license
> that the best seller is sold under. This would be plagiarism.

I give money to charity - someone is given that money and spends it on themselves - theft? BTW, just to be clear, I have no problem with IP - I just feel that ultimately IT and the planet in general is better served by FLOSS which is why I encourage it. Just like in the fields of science (my own being genetics) and literature, I encourage the Creative Commons.

>> As far as I'm concerned, both Linux and the *BSD's are a superior
>> technical choice for servers - the reason Windows is so popular is
>> because of the multiplicity of apps available, but FLOSS is now matching
>> Windows for end-user apps. LibreOffice is an example - I haven't booted
>> into Windows in over a year.

> While the options for desktop Linux have grown, there are still many areas
> where the competition is ahead. You mention one: Office applications.
> While LibreOffice is excellent, it simply is behind the competition in many
> ways - not only in features but in how they are done.

With respect to LibreOffice, I disagree - the open format allows the software to be exploited (positive) in novel and productive ways.

I would however say that the GIMP is inferior to Photoshop - my question would then be a) why fork out loads of dosh for funcitonality that 99.999% of people never use - and I certainly won't.

> This is a video I
> made showing a fairly common example:<>. The
> response by some in COLA was that the task shown, rotating an image in a
> word processor, is something they essentially never see happen and would
> never even consider. This is likely true - they use LibreOffice (or
> OpenOffice). In those packages, while the feature is available, it is done
> so poorly it is all but ignored. In better packages this feature is easy to
> use and thus *is* used: in newsletters, fliers, etc.

So, in some areas FLOSS is behind a couple of years for marginal functionality - so what? I would argue that FLOSS is ahead of closed source in important areas such as stability and price.

> Another example is screencasting, which is becoming more and more common.
> Here is a recent example of how Peter reacted to seeing another environment
> handle it better than does desktop Linux:

I've said that there are areas where closed source is superior.

>> But, again, all of this aside, none of this has an iota of an impact on
>> the opinion of the OP about FLOSS being "bogus".
>> I'm genuinely interested - I've never heard FLOSS called that before -
>> people differing over the merits of the different packages,

Vide supra.

>> but "bogus" - never...

It's the bogus tag that I object to.

> I would not call desktop Linux "bogus". It is excellent... it is just not a
> good competitor to OS X and Windows, at least for most users.

You and I are agreeing to differ - I respect that. It's the blanket dismissal of (all varieties AFAICS) of FLOSS that I find unacceptable.,

Paul... Received on Wed May 09 2012 - 23:38:42 CDT

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