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From: Aahz on 15 May 2010 11:28
In article <7bfa5457-027d-4ee1-a54f-3c0baba45a55(a)e21g2000vbl.googlegroups.com>,
Patrick Maupin <pmaupin(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>So, there are good reasons for both kinds of licenses, which I think
>everybody on the pro-permissive side has been saying all along. Of
>course, "force" is a more inflammatory word that "obligation" in some
>contexts, and that has been used in what I would admit on my part is a
>knee-jerk reaction to my belief that "free" and "freedom" are more
>inflammatory words than "rights" in the same contexts.
Aahz (aahz(a)pythoncraft.com) <*> http://www.pythoncraft.com/
f u cn rd ths, u cn gt a gd jb n nx prgrmmng.
From: Robert Kern on 15 May 2010 13:10
On 2010-05-14 21:37 , Steven D'Aprano wrote:
> On Fri, 14 May 2010 06:42:31 -0700, Ed Keith wrote:
>> I am not a lawyer, but as I understand the LGPL, If I give someone
>> something that used any LGPLed code I must give them the ability to
>> relink it with any future releases of the LGPLed code. I think that
>> means that I need to give them a linker and teach them how to use it,
>> and I do not want to go there.
> Surely you're joking?
> Does this mean that if they lose their hands in an accident, you have to
> come sit at their computer and do their typing?
> The LGPL and GPL don't grant people "the ability" to do anything, since
> that's not within our power to grant. Some people don't want to, or
> can't, program, or don't have time. It's not like the LGPL is the bite of
> a radioactive spider that can grant superpowers. It is a licence which
> grants *permissions*.
No, the LGPL requires you to do something extra to enable your users to be able
to relink your program. You need to provide the ability to do this, up to some
unspecified and untested limit of reasonableness (your example is obviously
beyond the limit of reasonableness). You can't just give them, say, a statically
linked program and nothing else. You can't require for-fee, proprietary linkers.
This is usually not hard to do (just give them unlinked .o or .obj files and a
Makefile or project file), but it is *not* just a matter of granting permissions.
But you're right, you don't have to teach them how to do it.
"I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma
that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had
an underlying truth."
-- Umberto Eco
From: Albert van der Horst on 15 May 2010 13:49
In article <7bdce8a7-bf7d-4f1f-bc9d-1eca2697497e(a)d27g2000yqc.googlegroups.com>,
Patrick Maupin <pmaupin(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>That is correct. All "privileges" as you put it are merely things
>that a user can do with the code without fear of a lawsuit by the
>author, and when an author uses a permissive license, he indicates
>that the things that he could possibly find egregious enough to sue
>over are very few. For example, if you give an Ubuntu CD to your
>friend without giving source code or a written offer of source code,
>you have violated the license on quite a few of the programs on the
>CD, but not, for example, on Python or Apache, because these licenses
>do not attempt to forbid you from doing this.
Bit this is stupid! The GPL is to accomplish a political goal,
an operating system with tools available to all, that can be
modified by anybody capable of doing so.
Enforcements not amenable to that goal will not happen.
It might surprise even RMS himself but ...
The political goal has been large and by accomplished at the expense
of great legal effort and great efforts of Linus Torvalds c.s. Without
the GPL Linux would not exist -- except in the form of an academic
exercise -- and neither would gcc, so neither would Python.
By proxy I estimate that none of the software with a permissive
license you mention would not be available.
You seem to imply that RMS is a nasty guy.
Yes, RMS is a nasty guy. All warriors are! Get in his
way and you're blasted. But some warriors fight for a right
cause ... This really has nothing to do with anything.
The meek will inherit the world, yes, but only after
the second coming.
Albert van der Horst, UTRECHT,THE NETHERLANDS
Economic growth -- being exponential -- ultimately falters.
albert(a)spe&ar&c.xs4all.nl &=n http://home.hccnet.nl/a.w.m.van.der.horst
From: Patrick Maupin on 15 May 2010 14:09
On May 14, 8:04 am, Ethan Furman <et...(a)stoneleaf.us> wrote:
> Steven D'Aprano wrote:
>> You've never had to recode something because it was nominally available
>> under a proprietary licence that you (or your client) was unwilling to
>> use? Lucky you!
> Steven, did you actually read what he wrote? If you did, why would you
> say something so stupid?
Well, in Steven's defense, my literal words "... labor that could have
been spent elsewhere if someone else had done something differently.
The only time that comes into play in my programming life is when I
have to recode something that is nominally available under the GPL..."
could easily be taken to mean that I have never had to recode
something that was under a proprietary license.
In truth most of what any of us write is probably very similar to
stuff that others have written, so taken in a very literal sense, yes,
obviously, there are several times that I have had to recode
proprietary software. But I was responding to Brendan's "broken
window" analogy, and, rightly or wrongly, I *assumed* he was only
referring to software that was free *at one time* but then was somehow
taken out of the commons. To my knowledge, I've never recoded such
software, and to the extent that anybody might be suggesting that
*all* software belongs in an easily-accessible commons and that nobody
should ever have to recode anything -- well, I could probably be
seduced by the Utopian vision, but I strongly reject that the sort of
rights-pooling mandated by the GPL is the single way to get there.
If everybody believes in the Utopian vision, the GPL is rendered
unnecessary, and to the extent that some people *really* don't believe
in the Utopian vision, the wording of the GPL makes a gentle
transition from proprietary to free difficult for programmers with
feet in both camps. However, the GPL *does* provide a core focal
point for the actual Utopian vision itself, and this does serve a
useful purpose. Personally, I think we are gradually lurching towards
the Utopian vision, and probably at a faster pace than if we only had
the GPL or if we only had permissive licenses. I think even RMS
believes this; as a matter of practicality he will suggest the LGPL or
even permissive licensing under some circumstances.
From: Patrick Maupin on 15 May 2010 14:46
On May 15, 12:49 pm, Albert van der Horst <alb...(a)spenarnc.xs4all.nl>
> In article <7bdce8a7-bf7d-4f1f-bc9d-1eca26974...(a)d27g2000yqc.googlegroups..com>,
> Patrick Maupin <pmau...(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> >That is correct. All "privileges" as you put it are merely things
> >that a user can do with the code without fear of a lawsuit by the
> >author, and when an author uses a permissive license, he indicates
> >that the things that he could possibly find egregious enough to sue
> >over are very few. For example, if you give an Ubuntu CD to your
> >friend without giving source code or a written offer of source code,
> >you have violated the license on quite a few of the programs on the
> >CD, but not, for example, on Python or Apache, because these licenses
> >do not attempt to forbid you from doing this.
> Bit this is stupid! The GPL is to accomplish a political goal,
> an operating system with tools available to all, that can be
> modified by anybody capable of doing so.
> Enforcements not amenable to that goal will not happen.
Absolutely agreed. I have no real problem with that. I *do* have a
problem with some of the faithful acting like I'm completely wrong and
trying to actively mislead about how the license works, but then I
guess that's par for the course for politics.
> It might surprise even RMS himself but ...
> The political goal has been large and by accomplished at the expense
> of great legal effort and great efforts of Linus Torvalds.
> c.s. Without
> the GPL Linux would not exist -- except in the form of an academic
Not sure that's true. Linus would have picked *some* license.
Possibly something like the BSD. He started development using Minix,
which certainly wasn't licensed freely, and which was first released 2
years before the GPL, so the GPL was not instrumental in providing his
first development environment. He might have had to choose a
different compiler if GCC weren't available, but there was a compiler
with Unix. I can believe that the GPL helped Linux gain some momentum
it wouldn't have had otherwise, but I reject your absolute assertion.
> -- and neither would gcc,
Well, not gcc itself, but there were compilers around...
> so neither would Python.
That I *completely* disagree with. Python was written for the amoeba
O/S, which was in existence and had compilers a good 3 or 4 years
before the first release of gcc.
> By proxy I estimate that none of the software with a permissive
> license you mention would not be available.
I disagree. If Linux weren't around, MS would not be the sole
winner. Free development would have coalesced around one of the BSDs
(which in absolute numbers are still pretty big projects right now, in
any case, just lacking the mindshare of Linux). As apache and other
projects have shown, the propensity of the few to try to lock things
up can easily be overcome with sheer numbers and willpower -- no
reciprocal license required.
> You seem to imply that RMS is a nasty guy.
I think we both agree that people who make history are often
unreasonable. I really don't have a problem with that, but I do have
a problem with apologists claiming it isn't so in his case.
> Yes, RMS is a nasty guy. All warriors are! Get in his
> way and you're blasted.
So maybe you're not one of the ones I have a problem with.
> But some warriors fight for a right
> cause ... This really has nothing to do with anything.
> The meek will inherit the world, yes, but only after
> the second coming.
If you read all the posts carefully, you will see that people arguing
that sometimes permissive licenses are the right ones also allow a
place for the GPL. It is only some of the GPL adherents who accuse
some of the "non-believers" of acting duplicitously, with malice, of
being against "freedom". I reject that characterization of myself,
and when people accuse me of this, I mentally place them in the
category of "religious nutter". Once I have placed someone in that
category, it is sometimes hard for me to respond civilly to them,
especially when they write something stupid. I have not yet placed
you in that category, but I do categorically reject your
interpretation of some of the relevant historical events.