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The GNOME project at 15

The GNOME project at 15

Posted Aug 15, 2012 12:59 UTC (Wed) by drag (subscriber, #31333)
In reply to: The GNOME project at 15 by njwhite
Parent article: The GNOME project at 15

Everything that makes it easier to write and distribute proprietary software on Linux makes it easier to write and distribute open source software on Linux.

If OSS applications are going to remain a sustainable model for application develop on Linux or any other platform it is ONLY going to happen because OSS is a superior approach.

Making it a much larger PITA to distribute software on Linux just because you are afraid of people using proprietary software just means that Linux will remain a PITA... for everything.


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The GNOME project at 15

Posted Aug 15, 2012 13:49 UTC (Wed) by njwhite (guest, #51848) [Link]

> Everything that makes it easier to write and distribute proprietary software on Linux makes it easier to write and distribute open source software on Linux.

Probably, fine (though proprietary software does have some different needs.) I'm not against tools which make it easier to write and distribute proprietary software. I just think that 1) GNOME is an odd place to be distributing it, and 2) I have traditionally admired their strong software freedom positions, which would be rather less credible if they sell it as "GNOME 4: Now with Photoshop."

The GNOME project at 15

Posted Aug 15, 2012 14:17 UTC (Wed) by rgmoore (✭ supporter ✭, #75) [Link]

Everything that makes it easier to write and distribute proprietary software on Linux makes it easier to write and distribute open source software on Linux.
For technical stuff, maybe so, but there are obviously licensing issues that can make it easier or harder to write proprietary software. GNOME's choice of LGPL rather than GPL for a lot of important libraries is an example of a licensing decision that makes it easier to write proprietary software without having a substantial effect on the ease of writing open source software.

The GNOME project at 15

Posted Aug 15, 2012 17:47 UTC (Wed) by drag (subscriber, #31333) [Link]

It certainly has had a substantial negative effect on open source software.

GPL has been the cause of innumerable compatibility headaches and rewrites and lawyering. All sorts of otherwise useless and counter productive work as well as causing all sorts of headaches for people that want to use it in all sorts of difference scenarios.

What the GPL does though is a allow people to produce and distribute software without some competitor turning around and using copyright law to screw them over.

This is using a lesser evil (GPL) versus greater evil (abuses of the market through copyright law). It is only necessary because of the legal framework the software must exist in. Without the specter of abuse through the use of copyright laws to stifle competition then GPL would be a terrible thing.

Right now it's a very mixed bag. Hopefully the protections it offers against the law offsets the negatives it introduces. I have the view that generally it does.


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