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Author Topic: Stallman is correct
spungo
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Icon 1 posted March 03, 2004 08:49      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ok - the first time I started to internally review the points that Richard Stallman puts forward, I thought, like many people do (or did), that what he does is cool, but he sounds like a ranting anarchist, hopelessly out of touch with what the real political struggles that afflict this World. However - more and more I'm beginning to realise that everything he foams at the mouth about is correct. Software patents? Complete and total rubbish. Using the word 'Linux' without its 'GNU' prefix? Bloody well fair enough, under the circumstances. Finally, the recent fiasco over SCO has only emphasized his wisdom and far-sightedness in drafting the GPL - it's water-tight in terms of what is right and proper.

Anyway - how about posting your objections to RMS and/or the GPL here, if you have any, and we can thrash it out.

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Posts: 6530 | From: Noba Scoba | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
GMx

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Icon 1 posted March 03, 2004 08:56      Profile for GMx     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I thought he was quite amusing when he was being interviewed by Leo Laporte on The Screen Savers. Leo interrupted him while he was answering a question and Stallam snapped at him, "Shut up! You made me lose my train of thought!"
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Drazgal
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Icon 1 posted March 04, 2004 04:27      Profile for Drazgal   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The main reason people dont seem to like RMS is that he highlights most peoples lack of commitment to the freesource ideals. Most people always want to make it easier on themselves on certain points, whereas he is living proof that no comprimise is needed. I mean the OpenSource / Freesource debate can be seen as some of the problem from SCO. Take SCOs letter to the senate recently. They complained long and hard that OpenSource was free and they cant compete with the price. But the Freesource movement wasn't about free in the price, but that we all have freedom to access the source code of the programs that we use and have access to the latest ideas so we can pool our collective knowledge. Many OpenSource people have forgotten this pollitical message in favour of what most benifits them.

As for the GNU prefix, without the GNU programs there would not have been any Linux OS for a long long time as each piece would be needed to be made. Linux owes the GNU project more than it likes to admit although maybe asking for it to be changed to Lignux (GNU at the heart of Linux) was a bit too much, although you have to admit the play on words is beautiful.

Though for favourite RMS moment, would be "Giving the GNU the Linus Torvalds award is like giving the rebel alliance the Han Solo award" [Smile]

Posts: 154 | From: Dundee, United Kingdom | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged
spungo
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Icon 1 posted March 04, 2004 04:42      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Drazgal:
Take SCOs letter to the senate recently. They complained long and hard that OpenSource was free and they cant compete with the price

I watched a video interview with Darl McBride on news.com (interviewed by some ZDNet guy). The whole campaign is just a list of sneaky, cheap-lawyer type spin - Tony Blair would be proud of it. Was he trying to convince the Senate that free software should be illegal? The tone of his letter was basically: "big American corporations have made billions from proprietary software - if we allow free software to flourish, that revenue will be lost, so if we don't implement some dodgy means of control over it, we stand to lose our international market dominance and we'll be forced to compete on a basis of quality - God forbid!"

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Posts: 6530 | From: Noba Scoba | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
quantumfluff
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Icon 1 posted March 04, 2004 06:13      Profile for quantumfluff     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Drazgal:
As for the GNU prefix, without the GNU programs there would not have been any Linux OS for a long long time as each piece would be needed to be made. Linux owes the GNU project more than it likes to admit ...

I don't really buy that. Linux as a kernel owes nothing to GNU except for having gcc and libc readily available. The basic unix tool suite was designed over many years by ATT and the BSD folks. THe fact that GNU did replacements for each part, fitting the same design is not a great feat of intellectual effort - it's one of manpower.

I'm not sure when or who decieded that the Linux kernel would be distributed with the GNU tools, but IMO that's more a decision of pragmatics than neccessity. It could have been just as well done using the FreeBSD utilities on top.

Posts: 2902 | From: 5 to 15 meters above sea level | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged
spungo
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Icon 1 posted March 04, 2004 06:24      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Yes, but it wasn't.

Don't forget GCC is a major part of this overall product - and GCC is a pretty big project (and acheivement) in itself. Plus, the licensing of the kernel is GPL - chosen by Torvalds over a BSD licence for a reason.

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Posts: 6530 | From: Noba Scoba | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted March 04, 2004 08:40      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The copyleft the GPL is perhaps more centeral to Linux's sucsess. The Linux Kernel is but a VERY small part of the whole operating system. The only reasons I refer to the OS as Linux (not GNU/Linux) is because it's shoter and I don't have to explain the whole RMS wants it that way stuff to anyone who's only heard it called Linux. Ideally, RMS is right on that point. Stallman is a bit extream, but I do like his ideas. I like more so Linus' ideas about the GNU standards - can't seem to find it on google, but it was something along the lines of "

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Posts: 3038 | From: State of insanity | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
zorgon
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Icon 10 posted March 04, 2004 09:35      Profile for zorgon     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Stallman is cool and the GPL is a great innovation.

The GNU/Linux "name" problem is however his own fault. The GNU plan was, all along, to make a completely Free UNIX-like kernel at the heart of a Free OS. Well, almost everything but the kernel got done. GNU stalled out as a great set of tools for existing Unixen, without making it to the level of being a Free OS. Finally, Linus came along and made a Free kernel, beating RMS to the punch. Now RMS has sour grapes about it. Nonsense. Those who matter know the score.

RMS is also impatient with people who misunderstand (or intentionally ignore) the difference between free (in cost, he says "free-as-in-beer") and free as in open source (he says "free-as-in-speech"). There's nothing in the GPL that prevents you from making money from your creativity -- it just prevents you from selling black boxes in bad faith, as proprietary software companies do.

Poor SCO [cry baby] I wonder if their shareholders are really Microsoft executives incognito ... [Wink]

Posts: 385 | From: Beautiful Uptown Goleta | Registered: Sep 2000  |  IP: Logged
GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted March 05, 2004 07:29      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
A critical point that missed is that RMS and the good people who work on his GNU projects have released a kernel, Hurd... Unfortunatly, it isn't up to the typical standards we've seen from the rest of the set. I think that they rushed to get a release out just to grab linux users (as well as beta testing purposes), I think that Hurd won't ever be as popular as Linux even if it ever is at the same level of quality...

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Posts: 3038 | From: State of insanity | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged


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