cross-posted from: https://beehaw.org/post/113521
cross-posted from: https://beehaw.org/post/113520
Twenty years ago, the phrase ‘open source’ had a definite meaning in computing which is quite different from the sense it has now…
Why is Free Software so Bad in Quality?
Most free software is poor or unusable. This is heavily disguised because protagonists like to use the isolated points fallacy to sell the idea FOSS is great.
…if you’re lucky enough to attract such a team you need to keep them together. And for that you need capital and that is exactly where FOSS falls down. This is the main reason why so much FOSS is of poor quality.1
FOSS was Built Out of Corporation and Tax Money
Open Office was derived from Star Office which was the product of StarDivision and Sun Microsystems. It was not put together by a hacker living in his mom’s spare bedroom…
Emacs was supported financially by people working at the MIT AI Lab, which means that it was funded by Uncle Sam…
Linux is…mostly a copy of Unix, despite howls to the contrary it is deeply unoriginal, being based on ideas going back to the time of the Vietnam War. These ideas were in turn evolved within Bell Labs by its creators who were also well-paid professionals. Linus Torvalds really copied an idea whose basis had been funded by university and corporation money and without that basis there would have been no Linux.
Free Open Source is not often Innovative
…lot of FOSS is poorly written reverse-engineered copies of existing commercial software. Innovation is hard; it requires time and brains. Reverse engineering is a powerful disincentive to innovation since anybody who does spend R&D capital in innovation, can have their ideas reverse engineered.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Linux is a family of open source Unix-like operating systems based on the Linux kernel, an operating system kernel first released on September 17, 1991 by Linus Torvalds. Linux is typically packaged in a Linux distribution (or distro for short).
Distributions include the Linux kernel and supporting system software and libraries, many of which are provided by the GNU Project. Many Linux distributions use the word “Linux” in their name, but the Free Software Foundation uses the name GNU/Linux to emphasize the importance of GNU software, causing some controversy.
Community icon by Alpár-Etele Méder, licensed under CC BY 3.0
What a terrible article.
Whenever I read the claim that copyleft ideology is hypocritical because it imposes a restriction on acceptable use of the software, I pretty much just stop paying attention. The ideology of copyleft is very clear and consistent: making non-free derivatives isn’t a valid freedom because it takes freedom away from others. No, just because you don’t like something doesn’t make it hypocritical. Compare copyleft to defensive force: everyone agrees that it’s wrong to punch someone, but everyone also agrees that you can punch back against someone who punches first.
Author did not write it is hyprocritical though? It is simply pointing out that copyleft might not fit broader definitions of “free” since copyleft is restrictive. I’m not going to further argue on terminology.
Also taking a historical view on the “free software” movement, we can see the purpose of copyleft, which I find justified (companies taking advantage and worse and not contributing back). But I find the main points in the article are free software dev sustainability, bad quality, companies taking advantage…