From: Diego Virasoro on 13 Mar 2010 09:37
> > Yes, it may cost some retraining time to move to another text
> > editor but so what:
> So, that's a nuisance and a cost, and depending on how much you find yourself
> relying on a given tool, it may start to be significant.
Here I disagree. When I moved from another text editor to emacs, it
was a pain to learn it. That didn't stop me from moving to Texmate
now, and maybe to move to something else in the future. That's how
It sounds like you are saying that I should pay a cost in my
productivity _right_now_ for the _possibility_ that Textmate's future
won't meet my needs and I will need to move again, paying some cost to
learn the new tool. And what if instead the future Textmate will still
be great? I will have lost productivity now and in the future, just
because I am being paranoic.
The only thing that is really important is that my data is portable,
which is why I care that Ruby is open: otherwise my code would be
> But there isn't really a lot of choice in cars. If I want a decent car at an
> affordable price, I pretty much want something manufactured, probably
> something used. It's entirely impractical to build it myself.
Are you saying that it takes no time to
a) read and understand the code that makes an open source texteditor
b) make the necessary changes to the code, and test it
c) and maintain the fork in case the developers don't agree with your
Personally the cost of learning a new text editor pales in comparison!
From: Diego Virasoro on 13 Mar 2010 09:52
> > Non-comparable. No fundamental civil rights are infringed when I'm told
> > I can't burn *someone else's* American flag. My right to write software
> > is not infringed by my lack of a right to modify someone else's without
> > permission.
> I suppose that's the difference between buying and renting software.
eh??? How's Textmate a rented software? I can use it forever: nobody
is stopping me. And I am not paying per month. What's your definition
What I cannot do is make changes, add new features that are "cool" as
the technolgy progresses. But then neither have I been able to add HD
to my TV: but that doesn't make it rented.
From: Josh Cheek on 13 Mar 2010 11:11
[Note: parts of this message were removed to make it a legal post.]
On Sat, Mar 13, 2010 at 8:55 AM, Diego Virasoro <diego.virasoro(a)gmail.com>wrote:
> What I cannot do is make changes, add new features that are "cool" as
> the technolgy progresses.
With all the things you can change and program, there is a pretty decent
likelihood that you will be able to.
From: Michal Suchanek on 13 Mar 2010 11:51
On 13 March 2010 15:55, Diego Virasoro <diego.virasoro(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>> > Non-comparable. Â No fundamental civil rights are infringed when I'm told
>> > I can't burn *someone else's* American flag. Â My right to write software
>> > is not infringed by my lack of a right to modify someone else's without
>> > permission.
>> I suppose that's the difference between buying and renting software.
> eh??? How's Textmate a rented software? I can use it forever: nobody
> is stopping me. And I am not paying per month. What's your definition
> of renting?
Yes, it is rented, pretty much all software is. By law you own only
software you have written yourself or some software which has somebody
written from scratch for you and transferred the copyright ownership
to you. For most other software you only obtain a license to use it
and the license terms typically provide the licensor the option to
discontinue the license so "rented" what describes the software quite
Opensource and free software for different definitions of free is also
rented, you can use it as long as you fulfill the license
Only public domain software is not owned by anybody so you can use it
without renting it.
From: David Masover on 15 Mar 2010 02:54
On Saturday 13 March 2010 12:05:06 am Seebs wrote:
> On 2010-03-13, David Masover <ninja(a)slaphack.com> wrote:
> > On Friday 12 March 2010 07:00:06 pm Seebs wrote:
> >> Non-comparable. No fundamental civil rights are infringed when I'm told
> >> I can't burn *someone else's* American flag. My right to write software
> >> is not infringed by my lack of a right to modify someone else's without
> >> permission.
> > I suppose that's the difference between buying and renting software.
> It is not obvious that "buying" a thing necessarily in all cases entails
> the right to manipulate it in arbitrary ways.
Actually, that in particular was blatantly obvious until very recently.
> > Put another way, I'm not saying I should be able to burn someone else's
> > flag. But if you sold me a flag, why should that automatically allow you
> > to dictate how I use it? Should I have to sign a no-burning contract
> > before any flag I buy?
> Should you have to before buying any flag? No. Should it be possible for
> someone to sell you a flag only if you agree to sign a no-burning contract?
> Sure. Should that contract be enforceable? I'd say in general it should.
I'd agree with all of the above, in a legal system. I point it out because in
general, people don't buy physical items with contracts. There are exceptions,
like cell phones, and those contracts tend to screw consumers over most of the
> If you don't like it, don't buy from that vendor.
However, I also occasionally speak up and make people question the tradeoffs
they're making. Again, take cell phones. I could simply refuse to buy a cell
phone, or I could get on my soapbox and try to convince others to stop buying
into these contracts. If enough people actually did start demanding cheaper
unlocked phones and shorter (or purely monthly) contracts, the end result
would be better terms for me.
Voting with your dollar individually doesn't get you nearly as far as getting
other people to cast similar votes.
> > Regardless, the point was not that this is an essential right, and that's
> > clearly hyperbole (on my part). The point is that it's important to me to
> > have that ability, whether or not I have a clear and present need for it.
> I think it's certainly *potentially* useful, but I've found that in many
> cases, it's not so useful as to make me abandon something else I care
It depends how much I care about it. You cited, as an example, hideous UIs. I
don't mind ugly UIs, as long as they're usable and get the job done.
> But for some users, that upgrade treadmill may be worth it -- especially
> if, say, you gain enough benefit from a particular Windows-only app that
> it is more efficient to upgrade frequently than to make do with something
The problem is, again, how frequently, and how much do you trust Microsoft?
For example, if your app broke on Vista, it now becomes a somewhat more
It's not directly about the cost. It's about the risk, and about being forced
to trust a single external vendor -- which becomes that much worse when it's a
> >> Not particularly high -- but an editor isn't comparable to an OS (unless
> >> it's emacs). I don't have to worry about new malware targeting my
> >> editor,
> > With textmate having its own URL schema, yes, you do. And that's ignoring
> > other stuff that you'd hope is easy to get right, like proper handling of
> > the text itself.
> I don't use that feature. So all I care about is plain text.
Doesn't matter. Unless you've actually disabled it (or unless it's disabled by
default), I can still give you a malformed txtmt URL, so you still need to
either pay attention to the potential vulnerabilities (and actively disable
functionality like that) or keep yourself patched.
> What leads me to Ruby in the first place is that it's pleasant
> to work with. If I wanted something less vendor-dependant or less likely
> to be suddenly changed out from under me, leaving me with no practical
> support, there are probably half a dozen languages I'd be better off with.
Interesting. I wonder what it is about those other languages that makes them
more suited to that purpose?
> Keep in mind, an option you can't actually use is not a real option. I'm
> comfortable enough with C to have diagnosed an arcane memory management bug
> in the pgsql driver. Not many other people I know would have had a good
> chance of finding that bug -- meaning that in practice, access to the
> source would not really be useful to them.
However, as Michal Suchanek pointed out, you can hire someone else to do so.
That is something which, again, is not necessarily an option for a proprietary
The other advantage is one that a healthy community provides -- even if you
don't personally have the skills to, say, maintain a Ruby 1.8.6 fork, chances
are that if 1.8.7 really changed that much, _someone_ will have the skills and
inclination to make 1.8.6 continue to work.
> > Adium was good. I like Kopete, these days.
> I try KDE occasionally. Around 4.x, they had a wonderful feature, which
> was that they never in any way saved user keybindings, such that every
> login got you all the defaults again. I guess maybe I'll try again
> sometime, but that's a level of quality control I would normally associate
> with Microsoft...
Yes, the exact 4.0 release was pretty awful. It's gotten better.
However, on that particular issue, OS X had something nearly identical -- it
wasn't all keystrokes, but a particular one which would be forgotten after
every reboot. This remained unfixed (after I reported it) for something like a
On an open source platform, I guarantee that at some point, sheer
determination would've led me to patching it myself, or working around it.
Fortunately, it usually doesn't come to that, as I can switch easily enough
from KDE to GNOME to Fluxbox to whatever else -- more an incidental benefit
than a direct benefit, I'll admit.
> I got a jabber server up and running... It was a pain. The
> next time I do server stuff, I'll put in OS X server, click "enable chat
> server", and have a working jabber server.
Again, YMMV. For me, this was along the lines of:
sudo apt-get install ejabberd
> It won't crash.
Hasn't crashed for me yet.
> It won't
> have a mysterious bug that took me a dozen reboots to track down causing
> it not to start up when started from /etc/rc.local even though it starts
> fine when invoked from the command line.
It starts from somewhere else, not rc.local, but it starts automatically when
installed and on every reboot.
> I won't have to replace it with
> a different one due to a crashing bug that no one cares about, or build
> a programming language environment before I can use it.
Nope, and nope. Erlang was auto-installed as a dependency.
> And that's worth
> a fair bit of money to me.
I did some initial research before picking ejabberd. I suppose that's also
worth some money.
> I only occasionally see a pure choice
> between genuinely equivalent things, one of which is open source.
I'll agree with that, but this happens a lot more often when I consider
whether they're equivalent for my needs. I'll freely admit Photoshop is
probably still far better than The Gimp, but I'm also not a graphic artist, so
open source plus price wins. For most things I'll have to print, OpenOffice
wins -- some people need certain obscure features of Word, I like a big
"export to PDF" button, and again, open source, open format.