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Dividing the Linux desktop
LWN.net Weekly Edition for June 13, 2013
A report from pgCon 2013
Little things that matter in language design
IMHO this is the key argument. Yet it's just the last sentence.
> When talking about free software is there always a need to call out the GPL individually, even in short articles?
Only when talking about fragmentation, which is one of the thing the GPL effectively prevents. There was a lot of open-source code involved in the Unix wars - none GPL.
PS: I did not write "barely" either.
The return of the Unix wars?
Posted May 3, 2012 19:57 UTC (Thu) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
The GPL effectively prevents fragmentation? Are you sure? The gcc and glibc projects provide evidence to the contrary. And I notice quite a number of GPL-licensed OSes out there; not everybody is contributing to the Hurd or even contributing back to Linux. Free software tends to make fragmentation easier to solve, definitely, but why does the GPL stand out above any others?
PS. barely is the second-to-last word you wrote. ?
Posted May 4, 2012 22:02 UTC (Fri) by clump (subscriber, #27801)
There are plenty of examples where software under non-reciprocal licenses like BSD has been incorporated into proprietary software. GPL violations certainly occur, but the nature of the license ensures your fork can't eclipse the original simply by hiding your changes.
Posted May 5, 2012 1:21 UTC (Sat) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
Whether some licenses are better than others at solving fragmentation is a complex question. How many projects have been started simply to avoid the more onerous restrictions of the GPL? LLVM, Android, etc... would all this fragmentation had happened if these projects were under a more liberal license? Seems unlikely.
So, in the real world, I don't think that it can just be taken for granted that the GPL is the best license for avoiding fragmentation. It's a seriously complex question.
Posted May 5, 2012 11:59 UTC (Sat) by marcH (subscriber, #57642)
I don't think "fragmentation" is the right term when referring to LLVM vs gcc, this is just competition. I agree that fear of the GPL encourages competing against it.
Compared to the Unix wars: - LLVM is not a fork from gcc's codebase; - they do not actively try to be incompatible with each other and achieve vendor lock-in; - the C standard is not under any risk because they compete with each other.
In respect of this discussion "Android" should not be considered as just one project but, as the GPL Android Linux kernel on the one hand and the non-GPL rest on the other hand(s).
Posted May 8, 2012 16:13 UTC (Tue) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
Posted May 8, 2012 16:26 UTC (Tue) by marcH (subscriber, #57642)
I listed a few factual criteria, what are yours?
> ... on a higher pedestal...
OK you are just trolling. Your question has been answered above.
Posted May 9, 2012 18:58 UTC (Wed) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
> Your question has been answered above.
Where? Why should Jon have called out the GPL specifically? A little quick to whip out the troll pejorative aren't we?
Posted May 9, 2012 19:32 UTC (Wed) by marcH (subscriber, #57642)
> But, I gotta say, dividing forks into competition and fragmentation groups doesn't seem like a real useful endeavor to me.
It's actually even more than useless: it's off-topic since LLVM is simply not a gcc fork. Another troll attempt?
> Why should Jon have called out the GPL specifically?
Crystal-clear explanation just a few posts above http://lwn.net/Articles/495998/
This is the post which you do not seem to have understood, either because of "mere semantics" problems or, maybe because of some emotional problems with the GPL? ("pedestal...")
> A little quick to whip out the troll pejorative aren't we?
No, not really... You actually sound too smart not to have understood the above explanation. Which means you are only pretending you did not. Bye.
Posted May 11, 2012 14:50 UTC (Fri) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
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