My universe and all the rest
October 6, 2009
… I’d agree with Miguel de Icaza. Good read. Hits the nail on its head about what I dislike about Richard Stallman.
Filed under Uncategorized
Yeah, on this Miguel has got it right, as far as the principle goes.
IME if you interact with RMS for a while you can expect some random and unfounded personal attack. It is hard to take these too seriously, though, because they are so off the wall. Still, I do wonder what he’s about, attacking his allies.
I agree with the general idea that we shouldn’t waste our time attacking others, but instead work on simply being better. However, I fail to see an attack at the level Miguel assumes in the cited RMS article and I don’t believe that Free Software vs. Open Source is a non-issue. In fact, the existence of both is contrary to the idea of all working together ‘to see free software succeed’; the term open source is ambiguous and was coined to support a more laissez-faire attitude to software freedom when compared with the existing Free Software movement.
I agree with Andrew. If you read Richard’s essay it doesn’t attack people or organisations. Instead it explicitly says “there is plenty of reason to be wary of the organization. But that doesn’t prove its actions will be bad”. And I think that conclusion is sound, there are ways that the Microsoft CodePlex foundation can help, and Richard spells out what would be helpful and what wouldn’t.
Miguel’s piece on the other is personal, negative, scaremongering against Richard personally and ridicules concerns our community has about attacks through drm and patents. It would have been a great opportunity for Miguel to take such concerns seriously and explain which concrete steps are being taken to mitigate them (rms already listed how that could be done).
We have been in a similar situation with Java and Sun. But we always worked together to point out the issues and risks. And we created a positive vibe around alternative free java alternatives. Which in the end did pay off much more than attacking each other. Richard is very precise and always let people fact check his opinion pieces on Java and Sun. And I think that creating such a united front was essential in turning around the Java and Sun situation. Miguel could do the same for Microsoft and .net if he wished to seriously work together.
Yeah, sorry, but I don’t trust this guy. He may have a point in respect to RMS himself, but I don’t trust this guy, really. This is one of the guys that made possible the scaring agreement with M$. The way mono is handled is broken by design, it’s not the technology or the community effort, but the way it’s handled, the patent monster hanging on your shoulder and ready to hit you at any time. Have you ever tried to use, say, silverlight on Linux? This is just an example, but be sure to get a good lawyer before testing it. In my opinion, Mono should be avoided at all costs. And no, Java was an entirely different thing, we were never put to threat by Sun, and the way it ended up with OpenJDK prove it.
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