Is a person really free if they aren't free to enslave others? [CSOTD]!
goran.hultgren at bluefish.se
goran.hultgren at bluefish.se
Thu Nov 8 15:04:11 UTC 2001
"Andrew C. Greenberg" <werdna at mucow.com> wrote:
> On Thursday, November 1, 2001, at 12:31 PM, Ed Heil wrote:
> > The only thing the GPL prevents you from doing is *LIMITING OTHER
> > PEOPLE'S ABILITY TO USE AND MODIFY THE SOFTWARE*.
> Patently false. GPL is full of limitations, obvious on the face of the
> license. Significantly, perhaps ironically, as an example, GPL prevents
> me from using and modifying GPL'd software with Squeak and distributing
> the result.
> I feel so free. Not.
> > It's equivalent to a philosophical argument over which country is more
> > free -- a country which has laws against slavery, or a country which
> > has no laws against slavery? The latter is more limiting, but the
> > former, many would say, is "freer."
> And others complain about the references to socialism! In the war of
> analogies, I abstain -- each has so many holes as to defy reasonable
> discussion, particularly with a true believer. This one (the analogy,
> of course, not my honorable colleague the true believer) is a joke.
> Quite frankly, the proposition suggesting that Smalltalkers who import
> GPL code into the monolithic image of an open source system are engaging
> in conduct credibly analogous to slavery needs greater support before it
> can be taken seriously.
This was not what Ed Heil meant, he just meant/tried to show that "free"
does not necessarily equal "without constraints".
> It is RMS and the GPL true believers here who have adopted and are
> defending to the end of the earth the proposition that their software,
> that their notion of the word "free" is correct, and that nothing else
> is free software,
It sounds as if you are saying that FSF say that GPL is the only free
software license. If that is indeed what you are saying then you are
just plain wrong.
All those licenses are considered "free software" by FSFs definition of
But perhaps you meant that FSF think that their definition of the TERM
"free software" is the only "correct" definition?
Btw, a quite good link here too:
[SNIP of long arguments of the "freeness" of GPL etc]
> The problem with GPL is not whether or not it is free, but whether it is
> useful. The problem with GPL is that for software founded on a
> late-bound monolithic image, it is not useful.
> Regardless of ideological propositions, GPL is useless for monolithic
> image worlds. If GPL insisted that GPL software must not co-exist on
> the same operating system as non-GPL software on Unix, it would have
> quickly become irrelevant. For precisely that reason, GPL is irrelevant
> to the world of Smalltalk, at least for so long as we retain the notion
> of an image.
Yes, I agree that GPL and late-bound monolithic images is where it gets
and I still would like to know how the Java world argues...
Going back to the issue of GPL vs BSD (or such licenses) I think that we
have two different
views on WHO it is who is free... (As I stated earlier it's people that
are free, not software)
The BSD view in this matter is the simpler one and look only at the
freedom of the person who has
obtained the source of the original program. If we only consider how
"free" that person is the BSD
license is definitely the one that gives the most choices and thus could
be considered more free.
The GPL view is that we should look at the freedom of all persons USING
- both now and in the future -
the program in question without regarding how that particular person
came into possession of the
program. The GPL license tries to ensure that all these persons have the
same freedom. Again,
the choices given to these people are somewhat fewer compared to the BSD
view above, but on
the other hand - the freedom encompasses ALL people that come into
contact with the program.
Different views, different licenses. Which is "more free"? It depends on
how you look at it I would say.
Andrew seems to "know" what is free and what is not - in spite of all
the discussions on the net about
these questions. I take a more humble stand and say "it depends".
PS. My original post was about an analogy of GPL to the "old Soviet" and
I still think that that
was a very poor analogy. I have a bunch of arguments piled up, but you
would have to ask for them... :-) DS
"Zip up a complete directory structure and place the zip in the parent
directory (as Winzip
does from the explorer menu choice). Anyone care to add a menu item in
dirName _ 'd:\images'.
archive _ ZipArchive new.
dir _ FileDirectory on: dirName.
dir fullNamesOfAllFilesInSubtree do:[:fn|
entry _ archive addFile: fn as: (fn last: (fn size - dirName size -
entry desiredCompressionMethod: ZipArchive compressionDeflated.
archive writeToFileNamed: (dir containingDirectory fullNameFor: dir
localName, '.zip'); close.
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