Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 29 Jun 2019, 00:01

Fortunately, piracy is fairly harmless to business. What's harmful are large movements where people cause problems en masse, like the open source movement. It's a strange time indeed for someone who uses free software but doesn't want to make that.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby Jastiv » 29 Jun 2019, 01:52

drummyfish {l Wrote}:
Jastiv {l Wrote}:1. Ethics talk – Making money and supporting your family considered more important ethically. (by some people, not necessarily by the fsf)
2. Ethics talk – Games are for fun, not serious so they don’t need an ethics discussion.


Are these your opinions? or Stallman's? Or the FSF's? It's not clear from the writing. I'd have objections to these.


1. Stallman deliberately choose not to have a family so he would not have to deal with that ethical dilemma. If he decided to be homeless or hole himself up in some MIT office, he would only harm himself. The fsf position is only that proprietary software is unethical, they do not actually go into detail about whether other ethical considerations are more important or not. Individual associate members have varying opinions on some issues (related to a hierarchy of ethics) but generally is is considered ok to use proprietary software to save someone's life.
2. The second comment related to ethics, also relates to the other issue I have with the fsf, namely a lack of a strong free culture stance. Stallman always talks about software and other useful works (as if there is such a thing as a useless work) yeah, the useless works. They have recently clarified some of their positions on this. They actually think works of opinion should have ND licenses. (because else someone might put words in someones mouth pretending they have an opinion they do not have) They are neutral on cultural works and works for entertainment, especially if they aren't an important part of a software project.
https://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-list.html
https://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-recommendations.html

(disclaimer, I am a current FSF associate member and have been to many libre planets, and before that the associate members meeting.)
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby drummyfish » 29 Jun 2019, 12:53

Jastiv {l Wrote}:1. Stallman deliberately choose not to have a family so he would not have to deal with that ethical dilemma. If he decided to be homeless or hole himself up in some MIT office, he would only harm himself. The fsf position is only that proprietary software is unethical, they do not actually go into detail about whether other ethical considerations are more important or not. Individual associate members have varying opinions on some issues (related to a hierarchy of ethics) but generally is is considered ok to use proprietary software to save someone's life.


This is a difficult one. I understand FSF is an organization who deliberately focuses only on one thing -- making people understand proprietary software is unethical -- because that is not widely known, and this needs to change. In this sense, I think it is actually always better to not talk about anything else than one specific issue, because once you start talking outside your scope, e.g. creating an hierarchy of ethics, you firstly lose supporters who can't identify with your other opinions even though they would support the original cause itself, and secondly you become a wide ideology, or a cult, like e.g. communism, which is a complex philosophy talking about society as a whole, encompassing economics, psychology, religion etc. So the FSF should form a basis, delivering one important message, and letting others "fork" it -- create other movements -- by adding further ideas to that.

That only concerns organization, not people, like RMS, of course. People can't and should't try restrict themselves to only have and spread one single opinion. But people like you and me are supporters of organizations like the FSF, not other people like RMS, so this shouldn't be a problem.

I experienced this-kind of community conflict first-hand recently -- I am big fan and a contributor to Wikipedia, but recently they put a huge "Wiki loves pride" LGBT ad on their site. I don't support LGBT (not gay people, just the organization and how it operates), and it discourages me from saying I am a Wikipedian, because then people think I also support LGBT. If they start voicing their opinions on more and more issues, I would be forced to abandon Wikipedia, even though I actually love it in its essence.

Jastiv {l Wrote}:2. The second comment related to ethics, also relates to the other issue I have with the fsf, namely a lack of a strong free culture stance. Stallman always talks about software and other useful works (as if there is such a thing as a useless work) yeah, the useless works. They have recently clarified some of their positions on this. They actually think works of opinion should have ND licenses. (because else someone might put words in someones mouth pretending they have an opinion they do not have) They are neutral on cultural works and works for entertainment, especially if they aren't an important part of a software project.


Yes, I mostly agree with this -- I think they should either be neutral, or show preference for free culture as well, as that is extremely close to the idea of free software, i.e. I don't think using free licenses would be talking outside their scope, as I write above. I remember RMS justifying ND by him not wanting anyone to be able to censor the ideas of freedom he is spreading, but I strongly disagree about spreading these ideas by force, using non-free, restrictive means. It's similar to the GPL issue, except here we are really talking about a non-free license. GNU Free Documentation License allows you to actually put ND sections in it, making it non-free. Prohibiting people from changing media already goes close to Soviet kind of propaganda.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby Lyberta » 29 Jun 2019, 21:24

drummyfish {l Wrote}:I experienced this-kind of community conflict first-hand recently -- I am big fan and a contributor to Wikipedia, but recently they put a huge "Wiki loves pride" LGBT ad on their site. I don't support LGBT (not gay people, just the organization and how it operates), and it discourages me from saying I am a Wikipedian, because then people think I also support LGBT. If they start voicing their opinions on more and more issues, I would be forced to abandon Wikipedia, even though I actually love it in its essence.


What? LGBT is not an organization. Can you give me links to what happened and what is wrong in your opinion?
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby drummyfish » 29 Jun 2019, 23:16

Lyberta {l Wrote}:What? LGBT is not an organization. Can you give me links to what happened and what is wrong in your opinion?


You're right, I incorrectly used the term organization, I simply meant a group. Why I don't support that group is irrelevant for this discussion, but you can guess it has to do with how they operate and mostly the western values they have adopted (force, violence, loudness, competition, not being humble at all and so on). For me the same also goes for feminists, metoo, antifa and similar groups.

This is actually just another example of "movements" becoming something akin political parties -- I would like to support the original cause (eliminating discrimination, inequality, fascism, ...), but I don't want to be associated with these groups because I largely disagree with what they actually do in practice.
Last edited by drummyfish on 30 Jun 2019, 17:21, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby Lyberta » 30 Jun 2019, 09:18

drummyfish {l Wrote}:This is actually just another example of "movements" becoming something akin political parties -- I would like to support the original cause (eliminating discrimination, inequality, fascism, ...), but I don't want to be associated with these groups because I largely disagree with what they actually do in practice.


You know that we only got basic recognition after Stonewall riots? It's only when we said "fuck the police" and started marching, people started to change. That's how you fight for your rights. Every time.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby drummyfish » 30 Jun 2019, 17:39

Lyberta {l Wrote}:You know that we only got basic recognition after Stonewall riots? It's only when we said "fuck the police" and started marching, people started to change. That's how you fight for your rights. Every time.


I would say you are only partially right. I actually have nothing against marching in the streets, but there are different ways to do it -- an army of fear can be marching as well as a peaceful group of people seeking understanding and compassion. As I've written previously in this thread, a fight is only one way of achieving a goal, often not a good one when viewed from a wider perspective, in a greater context. I won't be going into great lengths to convince you, I would just like people reading this -- especially those born and raised in the US -- to realize and think about other ways of promoting ideas. It is difficult to do because you have to reevaluate a lot of things, such as the definition of success and failure. But I'll leave this to everyone alone.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby freemedia2018 » 22 Jul 2019, 07:37

Julius {l Wrote}: Or alternativly blowing up minor disagreements over approaches (PD vs. GPL for example). There is basically no better way to destroy an idea from within than that :(


I find that a historical perspective often helps clears these things up. Not that most people are interested in history-- it makes the debate clearer for those most interested in the truth.

I'm not on either side of that debate, because there are valid (also non-theoretical, practical) reasons why the FSF pushes the GPL and copyleft. Consider that Torvalds was always on the "open source" side of the debate, even smears Free Software as being "about hate" and still Torvalds has never pushed for moving from GPL2 (he's against GPL3 for sure) towards a permissive license.

Torvalds basically wants to keep the kernel viable as a project-- if you want to make (publically available) changes to it, he wants access to those changes. The license requires it, and this has almost certainly resulted in the Linux kernel having more direct contributions. The GPL holds the kernel together as a project.

Meanwhile, I release my code to the public domain. Unlike Torvalds and the FSF, I'm not worried about what people do with my code. In this regard, Linux and the FSF have stricter standards then I do, but I have no desire to misrepresent their stance on this-- I suspect that MOST people who misrepresent their stance have no desire to do so.

History also may explain why some people misrepresented their stance in the first place, leading others to do so innocently. But it still benefits those people to paint this as simple a matter of obnoxious quibbling, when much or even most of the real explanation for copyleft is entirely practical. The FSF is more honest about it than its opponents. Just to be clear, I put my own code in the public domain (sometimes a permissive free software license) regardless. Even the FSF makes that compromise at times. I just do it more often than they do, but I know the real reasons they do it-- that's where history comes into it.

It is frequently painted as mere dogma and being strict for the sake of it, but that's not the real story. If it were, why did Torvalds say that choosing the GPL was one of the best decisions he ever made? He's not on their side of this, but he's glad he didn't choose a BSD type of license? What's the number one advantage Linux has over BSD, as a kernel? It's not security. It's what? (And the answer, is the reason why the GPL benefits Torvalds.)

Don't expect technical people not to quibble over the right tool for the job though-- you might as well ask a bird not to fly, or a fish not swim. That quibbling never stopped us from landing on the moon. It's just how things get done among technical people. Licensing isn't likely to be any different. This really isn't about dogma at all, it's about geeks and their favourite tools-- and what those tools accomplish in real life, not just in theory.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 23 Jul 2019, 00:12

Linux is more popular, but I don't see how the big bloated GPL'd Linux kernel is superior to BSD kernels and such.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby Lyberta » 23 Jul 2019, 04:32

fluffrabbit {l Wrote}:Linux is more popular, but I don't see how the big bloated GPL'd Linux kernel is superior to BSD kernels and such.


It actually runs games?
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 23 Jul 2019, 04:47

I've never used one of these distros, but can't you compile games on NetBSD, Minix, etc. just like everywhere else?
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby Lyberta » 23 Jul 2019, 04:58

You mean proprietary games under Steam runtime? Don't think so.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 23 Jul 2019, 05:25

Lyberta {l Wrote}:You mean proprietary games under Steam runtime? Don't think so.

Of course not; Steam currently only runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux. But maybe I can lean on the Epic Store when I eventually go that route and make a BSD client happen.

Linux is no different from the other free distros, but my favorite Latin phrase is argumentum ad populum. Linux is so popular that BSDs will apparently ship with a Linux binary compatibility layer. I don't know how it works; probably not the full Linux kernel.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby freemedia2018 » 23 Jul 2019, 05:46

The only advantage I can think of with the Linux kernel vs. BSD is that Linux has more contributors and wider support of hardware.

Considering that I think the Linux kernel has a bleak future (and I'm far from alone in that) this isn't gloating, but it is relevant. I don't think there's any way around it either, but anybody could be wrong, I could be as well. I'm aware of BSD's stance on copyleft and it doesn't bother me in the least. I also use permissive licensing.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 23 Jul 2019, 09:52

NetBSD in particular is all about porting to exotic hardware, so I think the driver situation is pretty solid. The kernel architecture is better suited for that. I bet if you compared a Linux-libre distro to NetBSD you might find better support on the latter.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby drummyfish » 23 Jul 2019, 10:03

In capitalism popularity and success is random, it has little to do with superiority. Windows is far more popular than GNU despite being vastly inferior and even abusive. It all happens in the initial stages in which due to some random fluctuation -- mostly unpredictable -- product A gets a bit more popularity than product B, and since being popular makes you more popular, the instability skyrockets product A and kills B, even if the fluctuation has been long gone.

For Linux the license may have been part of this fluctuation, but not because copyleft is somehow superior, but rather because GPL made it affiliated and join forces with GNU, which stated promoting it. It may as well have been the amazing story of a "lone genius student single handedly writing his own kernel" which helped its popularity. It may have been a million of other things and a pure chance. The subsequent popularity has helped Linux get more contributors and maybe really become superior in terms of technology, but whatever made Linux more popular than other kernels at the beginning has been long gone now.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 23 Jul 2019, 10:22

Less code is better code. Popularity may work on consumers, but we're programmers here. I think any argument related to first-time end users trying stuff out is more closely related to a mainstream culture this forum has shunned itself from. If you want to talk popularity, that we ain't.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby freemedia2018 » 23 Jul 2019, 10:44

fluffrabbit {l Wrote}:I think any argument related to first-time end users trying stuff out is more closely related to a mainstream culture this forum has shunned itself from.


It really isn't though. IMO the appeal to popularity is OSS, not FS. The appeal to popularity-- I'm not anti-capitalist but I'm anti-monopoly, which means that anticaps and I consider a long list of similar things as real problems-- is generally based on what's common (saturation of the market) what's easy to obtain, and what comes with the false sense of security afforded by lots of false promises (marketing.)

In this regard, schools for example will always have the tools they need already. When they don't, the market will promise them what they need, which they will obtain if possible. Anything else is disregarded.

Here's the reality of BSD-Linux vs. Linux-based: monopolies are poised to disrupt both, not through competition but through influence and partial control. It takes a long time to prove that, but proving it is being worked on (the work is released early and often. You only need to be interested, to know.)

To me this is not about PD vs GPL or BSD vs Linux. Both PD and GPL have a place and purpose. Both BSD and Linux clearly have a place and a purpose. Appeal to popular opinion doesn't sway the right tool for the job-- often the right tool comes down to "the long tail" which popularity ignores. Based on your argument, we are on the same page with that. Most important, in my opinion at least, is the fact that some of us would like to defend these platforms. I certainly would.

As often as something is the right tool for a particular task, I won't disqualify it just because it's popular, I'll judge it on merit. As I said to a systemd-free distro developer at lunch the other day, "I would love to just focus entirely on software. The problem is, I'm concerned about what that software is going to run on." We shouldn't have to worry about that, but we agree there is a war on.

I consider BSD an ally, not a competitor. But collectively they're pretty apathetic, which is alright for them. The answer to an ally who isn't a foe but who is apathetic, is to extend an open invitation and then move to focus on those who are interested. I think that's fair. But don't expect me to adopt their apathy, anymore than I can expect them to start being concerned.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 23 Jul 2019, 11:03

You had lunch with a distro developer? I'm jealous.

If you just want to focus on software, just focus on software. I feel like you're doing philosophical gymnastics to sway me to a perspective that others in this thread have already stated but that you're too polite to say directly. And I disagree. And that's fine. Seriously. I don't like Microsoft, I don't like the Android ecosystem, but at some fundamental level these things have some really awesome software if you can get past the bullshit.

As for init systems, who cares? systemd vs alternatives affect lower-level software, but typical apps won't even notice. I think there is a strong argument for a lighter init system when you consider all the daemons running on larger Linux distros, which you may not want. But in my opinion, this issue is way more about software than it is about politics. When you download Ubuntu, you know it's going to be political because Canonical wants to make money. You know what you're getting.

I don't see a problem because I don't separate OSS from FS. It's frustrating when people try to make a movement out of things. I sometimes go to this forum to take refuge from all the proprietary crap I have to use, but there needs to be balance, and when things swing too far to the opposite extreme, I can recognize the difference between technical issues and whining. I'm not calling anyone here a whiner, but IMHO some folks go too far. Most software issues are due to bad programming, not design decisions. Most of the shit you put up with is incompetence disguised as politics.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby freemedia2018 » 23 Jul 2019, 12:11

fluffrabbit {l Wrote}:I feel like you're doing philosophical gymnastics to sway me to a perspective that others in this thread have already stated but that you're too polite to say directly. And I disagree.


That's the misconception. I have no hope of swaying you, I'm only defending my position on the matter. And part of the reason I'm defending it is that I think you're misrepresenting it.

I don't think it's deliberate, I'm not even sure you know my position. But whenever I find something I consider a strawman, (even unintended, because I'm not accusing you of being dishonest) I feel like correcting it. If I think someone's trolling, it's probably worth giving up-- but I don't think you're trolling. And I don't intend to change your mind, either.

I don't like Microsoft, I don't like the Android ecosystem, but at some fundamental level these things have some really awesome software if you can get past the bullshit.


I'm a librarian at heart, as well as a free software advocate, as well as a coder. I would hope for people to salvage as much of the history of software as possible-- one of the things I think the FSF fails to do is encourage more development of free software. It's in line with their mission, though not their methodology. And the reason it's important, is that companies are trying to shut down free software development-- and free software probably doesn't have the numbers anymore to stop them. Recruitment is necessary. (Relax, I don't mean you. We are agreed that you probably don't want to be part of this.)

"Mrs. Robinson, you're trying to recruit me."

"I am not trying to recruit you. Would you like me to recruit you, is that what you're trying to tell me?"

As for init systems, who cares?


Now THAT is an appeal to popularity. It's also a rhetorical question that pretends people don't care, when in fact quite a few people have worked for the past 5 years to do something about it.

typical apps won't even notice.


I don't know what a typical app is, but I have along with quite a few others, noticed an ongoing degradation in the quality of distros that chose systemd.

I think there is a strong argument for a lighter init system when you consider all the daemons running on larger Linux distros, which you may not want.


I am all in favour of a variety of init systems for a variety of purposes, including lighter ones.

But in my opinion, this issue is way more about software than it is about politics.


Yes, but im my opinion, I have more evidence at my disposal to say otherwise. It's not going to win an argument, though I know people that have amassed this evidence for years. For a taste of it, try this book: (I'm not suggesting you read it, but it contains plenty of argument if you want a to have a summary poke at it.)

http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... 06/p12.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... 06/p48.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... 6/p813.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p1418.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p1923.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p2429.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p2934.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p3539.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p3947.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p4860.pdf
http://techrights.org/wp-content/upload ... /p6071.pdf

If you'd like something heavier or more thoroughly-researched, that book reminded someone on soylentnews of a similar book written about IBM and their ruthless business tactics, which are similar in nature. I would be happy to fetch the title for you.

Note also that I predicted Red Hat would be purchased just months prior to IBM buying them. I predicted it would go to Microsoft (this was right after the GitHub acquisition) though Microsoft was considered as a buyer and Red Hat did get purchased by a similar company.

When you download Ubuntu, you know it's going to be political because Canonical wants to make money. You know what you're getting.


This is an oversimplification, I'm not against commercialism and neither is the FSF.

I don't separate OSS from FS. It's frustrating when people try to make a movement out of things.


OSS wouldn't exist without Stallman and the FSF. The reason most people don't separate the two is that OSS has spent years conflating two things, rewriting history and selling out to monopolies.

Free software is anti-monopoly. You don't "win" anything by ceding voluntarily to your opponent
anything that isn't already theirs (you can cede what is won fair and square, but throwing a fight is an act of dishonesty or fraud.)

What Open Source has "won" is a seat at the table, but it was someone else's table and they traded it for a seat. Even that place that the table is not sustainable. Someone else built that table-- and they reduced it from a movement-- a quest for independence and autonomy-- to a "development methodology".

Even OSI Co-founder Bruce Perens has this to say about the co-opting of Free Software by Open Source: https://lists.debian.org/debian-devel/1 ... 01641.html

So everyone is entitled to their opinion, but arguments that require re-writing history are doomed in the light of a more honest take on things. And Open Source is collapsing. GitHub, Red Hat and the Linux Foundation are all prominent examples. Canonical is around the corner-- it seems inevitable.

I sometimes go to this forum to take refuge from all the proprietary crap I have to use, but there needs to be balance, and when things swing too far to the opposite extreme, I can recognize the difference between technical issues and whining. I'm not calling anyone here a whiner, but IMHO some folks go too far.


Could you be more specific? We all have our favourite fallacies (that other people lean on.) One of my favourites is Appeal to Moderation-- honest compromise is good when it truly benefits everyone, but a 50/50 compromise between a Lie and a Truth is still a lie, it's just less of one.

Most software issues are due to bad programming, not design decisions.


A bad design is an act of bad programming. A monolith is a fair compromise for a kernel, but modular software as a rule is still better. Experience ought to show that monolithic software is easier to sell, but it's easier to mess up. The growing trend from most things modular to most things monolithic is an unmitigated design disaster.

Most of the shit you put up with is incompetence disguised as politics.


That's what most politics is for-- to disguise incompetence and theft as progress.

The rest of politics (including the study of history) is for uncovering that incompetence and theft.

As for OSI, what they're doing is deeply political. They have enjoyed fleecing people for years, with stories of how what they're doing somehow transcends the political nature of free software. But their history is one of conquest and theft, and you can't have conquest without politics-- you can still pretend.

You're a BSD fan. BSD was founded on a development methodology, which resulted long-term in the many-years-long battle to wrest the right to develop BSD freely from a monopoly which tried to own what was (re)created by the public. Even BSD is not immune to politics. The question is, why would you want it to be apolitical on one side, when it is political on others?

That's a call for voluntary impotence, for being powerless. The right to develop BSD freely took politics for many years to be possible. If it had succeeded earlier on, or if AT&T had not forced such political effort to defend the rights of BSD developers, the FSF might not exist in the first place.

You can pretend politics don't exist or deny their relevance, but development will be affected by them either way. Not decreasingly so, but of late the threats are increasing-- and increasingly well-documented, as well. Shall we ignore them? You're free to do so. Please try to understand if not all of us do.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby Jastiv » 23 Jul 2019, 20:31

fluffrabbit {l Wrote}:Less code is better code. Popularity may work on consumers, but we're programmers here. I think any argument related to first-time end users trying stuff out is more closely related to a mainstream culture this forum has shunned itself from. If you want to talk popularity, that we ain't.


Surprisingly, a lot of popularity arguments influence developer decisions. For instance, why am I concerned with getting my game editor to work on java 11. I hate to think of some future hassle someone will have to go through to get things to work under java 8 instead. I can't change the fact that java is moving forward with version numbers (and if I tried it would distract me from making games). Similarly, my project eventually stopped using cvs and moved to git. Why? Because sourceforge stopped support for cvs, and why did they do that? Because it lost the popularity wars. So don't give me this crap about developers don't care about popularity, they do care about popularity, .. a lot.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby freemedia2018 » 23 Jul 2019, 20:53

Jastiv {l Wrote}:So don't give me this crap about developers don't care about popularity, they do care about popularity, .. a lot.


Indeed, I mean you could chalk up all talk of compatibility to matters of popularity. And it would be silly to do so, but not difficult to.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 23 Jul 2019, 22:17

This is an oversimplification, I'm not against commercialism and neither is the FSF.

But you're against Microsoft and IBM. Canonical has partnered with Amazon and various server services, just like the lateral partnerships of any major corporation.

Someone else built that table-- and they reduced it from a movement-- a quest for independence and autonomy-- to a "development methodology".

Before the DMCA, software in America was public domain by default. I don't know about these claims of rewriting history, but it would seem to me that programmers just had fun with open source stuff back in the day. A lot of businesses probably weren't entirely dependent upon software infrastructures at that point anyways. The golden years.

Could you be more specific?

This thread has a good amount of whining in it.

A bad design is an act of bad programming. A monolith is a fair compromise for a kernel, but modular software as a rule is still better. Experience ought to show that monolithic software is easier to sell, but it's easier to mess up. The growing trend from most things modular to most things monolithic is an unmitigated design disaster.

This may be true in the case of kernels, but it's not a universal truism. I can think of counter-examples:

* Libraries are more reliable than servers running on your machine that programs make local connections to.
* Games actually benefit from haphazardly throwing all the functionality into the main source file. If you abstract things out into separate libraries, the glue code adds up such that your program becomes overall more bloated and things are harder to find.

The question is, why would you want it to be apolitical on one side, when it is political on others?

Because it's fun to play independent liberatarian in America. Sometimes it's better to not have outside influences on your own software.

I am aware that BSD predates a lot of things. Maybe it was more political back in the day, but things have died down and now it doesn't have the same hot-headed debates that you usually see revolving around Linux.

For instance, why am I concerned with getting my game editor to work on java 11. I hate to think of some future hassle someone will have to go through to get things to work under java 8 instead.

That's not popularity, that's deprecation. If problems were discovered in Java 8, they may not be fixed until later versions. That's how Java works. There are reasons to use Java 1.1 if you want to target Windows 98 and Mac OS 9, and there are reasons to use the latest version if you want to keep up with whatever Java is doing.

Similarly, my project eventually stopped using cvs and moved to git. Why? Because sourceforge stopped support for cvs, and why did they do that? Because it lost the popularity wars. So don't give me this crap about developers don't care about popularity, they do care about popularity, .. a lot.

Maybe if your argument were Mercurial vs Git I would agree, because those two systems are similar. But CVS is crap. I've tried to make sense of it, and it does not align with my way of thinking. Getting rid of CVS? Good. That's not politics, that's tech.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby freemedia2018 » 24 Jul 2019, 00:17

fluffrabbit {l Wrote}:
This is an oversimplification, I'm not against commercialism and neither is the FSF.

But you're against Microsoft and IBM.


Doesn't really matter, I could be against them just because I don't like the letter "M". As it happens, it's their actions as companies that bother me, not the fact that they're commercial.

Before the DMCA, software in America was public domain by default.


Yeah, a bit before the DMCA-- up until 1976, when they changed the way copyright defaults.

I don't know about these claims of rewriting history, but it would seem to me that programmers just had fun with open source stuff back in the day.


The rewriting of history comment covers the time from 1983 to 1991, when most of the groundwork for what would be officially called (coined by Christine Peterson) "Open Source" in 1998. In the alternative version of history, Linus Torvalds saved the world from Microsoft-- in the real version, Stallman was the pioneer, Torvalds was closer to Professor Lockhart (it's difficult to say how much of this was Torvalds' fault directly, but he certainly played along) and OSI ran with it. I've already cited the letter from co-founder Perens-- that's the real history right there.

Originally, OSI was openly hostile to Microsoft. There are still cached pages on the OSI website to prove it. The board convinced other co-founder Raymond to take down his Halloween documents, which are now hosted on his personal website-- but OSI used to host medieval (Robin-hood themed?) parodies of Microsoft's internal memos, among other rants.

None of which were anti-commercial, but anti-corruption and anti-anti-competitive.

So I hope it's possible to avoid that false dichotomy any further.

A lot of businesses probably weren't entirely dependent upon software infrastructures at that point anyways. The golden years.


They didn't need to be, IBM didn't sell machines, it leased them and sold service contracts (much like Red Hat, which they now own.)

This thread has a good amount of whining in it.


Well, that barely narrows it down-- you obviously expect someone else to extrapolate your opinions for you out of vague commentary. One might ask what the actual problem with this thread is that you would dismiss it as whining, but my guess is it's something you simply don't give a shit about-- and expect others not to either.

A bad design is an act of bad programming. A monolith is a fair compromise for a kernel, but modular software as a rule is still better. Experience ought to show that monolithic software is easier to sell, but it's easier to mess up. The growing trend from most things modular to most things monolithic is an unmitigated design disaster.

This may be true in the case of kernels, but it's not a universal truism. I can think of counter-examples:

* Libraries are more reliable than servers running on your machine that programs make local connections to.


I honestly can't figure out which aspect of this is a counter-example. Libraries are modular, but even if they weren't a "growing trend" doesn't mean that everything is now monolithic. I'm not sure what you're getting at. As for servers, this "cloud" business is more or less what I think you're talking about, but unless you mean something very different (and I honestly can't tell what you mean) then this is the worst analogy ever. Benefit of the doubt in full, but I don't know.

Games actually benefit from haphazardly throwing all the functionality into the main source file. If you abstract things out into separate libraries, the glue code adds up such that your program becomes overall more bloated and things are harder to find.


I wasn't aware of this, but I'll take your word for it.

Because it's fun to play independent liberatarian in America. Sometimes it's better to not have outside influences on your own software.


I'm also libertarian. But now you're conflating politics with stupid laws, when libertarianism is also political, and the sort of "politics" you seem to be complaining about are actually not authoritarian at all.

But I definitely feel like you're just "playing," which makes the entire conversation a lot less worthwhile. If this is just a game to you, I really don't want to spend 15 minutes or more replying to some guy online who just intends to jerk me around.

It's just a vague impression at this point, but time will tell.

I am aware that BSD predates a lot of things. Maybe it was more political back in the day, but things have died down and now


They have, now that BSD is no longer fighting for its right to continue. But at one point it had to, and if it hadn't proved to be a long and drawn-out conflict with a large corporation, GNU would not likely exist, nor Linux. The point being that every project may require political defense at some point, and pooh-poohing the defense as many enjoy doing, won't change that fact.

it doesn't have the same hot-headed debates that you usually see revolving around Linux.


I suspect that there is a larger ratio of greybeards involved with BSD, but I don't know that for a fact-- and I have absolutely nothing against greybeards. It would likely explain why the debates are cooler-headed.

It would also explain why they describe every negative that isn't immediately relevant to them as "whining." Now for all I know you're closer to 17 than 57, but a culture with a higher ratio of experienced developers (note that I have a fair amount of respect for BSD as an operating system) is likely to encourage the sort of culture you're describing among everyone-- on average. That hasn't stopped de Raadt from his sometimes juvenile musical parodies of people he disagrees with-- which isn't to say he doesn't have the right. But I don't even know what flavour of BSD you prefer, and it hardly matters.

One man's politics is another man's "whining." Though personally I prefer standards that are single, not double-- and that's a tall order sometimes.
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Re: Another movement - User Respecting Software?

Postby fluffrabbit » 24 Jul 2019, 00:32

I honestly can't figure out which aspect of this is a counter-example. Libraries are modular, but even if they weren't a "growing trend" doesn't mean that everything is now monolithic. I'm not sure what you're getting at. As for servers, this "cloud" business is more or less what I think you're talking about, but unless you mean something very different (and I honestly can't tell what you mean) then this is the worst analogy ever. Benefit of the doubt in full, but I don't know.

I'm not sure what you thought I meant, but I was talking about the degree of separation/modularity between the components of a single app. It could all be headers, it could be libraries, it could be daemons, it could be cloud. Generally the degree of modularity should be different depending on what kind of app it is. If it's a kernel, modularity is good. If it's a game engine, modularity should only be used in moderation.

I wasn't aware of this, but I'll take your word for it.

Do you program games at all?

This is what I'm talking about. Pages upon pages of politics and very little discussion about technical solutions.
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