[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next] - [Date Index][Thread Index][Author Index]

Re: Flight Computers

Phil Karn writes:
> >Normally Phil is pretty level headed but it sounds like he has fallen
> >victim to the FSF's FUD about non-GPL.
> Rather than respond directly to this, I'll simply point out that the
> debate between advocates of the GPL and BSD-style licenses has been
> going on for a long time, so we're unlikely to resolve it here.

Agreed. But my point being your FUD statement (not quoted) is so often
heard in almost exactly that form that it sounds like a literal quote of
unison readings from articles of faith at church. So I turned it right
back around because the flip side is at least as true.

> >Without paying customers its hard to afford the cost of renting
> >electrons from the power company so our toys play.
> Nothing prevents the author of software placed under the GPL from also
> licensing that same software for money to customers unwilling to abide
> by the GPL. I've done that myself.

If any of the supposed advantages of others having used one's GPL code
and "enhanced" it, then one's own code is contaminated by other's GPL-ed
enhancements. Without tracking down copyright releases from each and
every one of the contributors the code is permanently contaminated. As
is clearly the FSF's intent.

Yes, one *could* re-release the exact same original code under another
license. But not one's own code plus other GPL licensed enhancements
have been added.

The only motivation I see in GPL's demand that all changes be
distributed under the same terms is idealistic anti-intellectual property
socialist whackoisim. If a good capitalist gives away source code and
sees Apple or Microsoft "enhance" and successfully sell it, will cheer
them on whether or not the changes are released. The original code still
exists under the same terms it always did so its no skin off his nose 
or money out of his pocket.

On one side is the worn argument that the pie is of fixed size and The
Powers That Be must equitably distribute slices of pie. On the other
side is the argument says the pie's size depends on how well and
efficiently it is made. Knowledge and technology (repeating myself, but
it sounds better) is the lever which advances our standard of living. We
don't have to reinvent the wheel as it is long part of our technology
base and public domain. Open Source Zealots would have one believe their
Cause is New and Great, but its as old as the wheel. Open Source is
nothing new, especially obvious with printed material.

Patents are a favorite to attack by Open Source Zealots. But if they
would bother to think first they would realize a patent is another
classic case of Open Source. One reveals the keys of one's invention
which make it unique, defends one's claims initially contested by the
patent examiner, possibly later contested in court. In exchange is
granted temporary protection against others applying the same invention
without compensation. But at the same time has documented the invention
such that never again (in theory) can another claim the same thing.
After 20 years the invention (possibly worth at lot at first) becomes
Public Domain, completely unburdened by even the likes of GPL.

David Kelly N4HHE, dkelly@hiwaay.net
The human mind ordinarily operates at only ten percent of its
capacity -- the rest is overhead for the operating system.

Via the amsat-bb mailing list at AMSAT.ORG courtesy of AMSAT-NA.
To unsubscribe, send "unsubscribe amsat-bb" to Majordomo@amsat.org