[ILUG-BOM] A Linux Brochure

പ്രവീണ്‍‌|Praveen pravi.a@[EMAIL-PROTECTED]
Wed Jan 3 18:50:00 IST 2007

2007/1/3, Kenneth Gonsalves <lawgon at au-kbc.org>:
> there are two main development models going:
> 1. an organisation or company running the show, planning the direction
> 2. a meritocracy running the show, planning the direction
> anything under the first model - regardless of the license - is in
> danger. Good examples are mysql and mono - both under GPL

What is dangerous with mysql? If they stop releasing GPLed versions the
community can easily fork it. Example sourceforge and gforge.
http://gforge.org/projects/gforge/ gforge is widely used and actively
developed (sarovar.org, savannah.gnu.org, alioth.debian.org ...)

And the danger with mono is patents. Even dotGNU has the danger but not as
grave as mono because Novell is paying royalties means acknoledging the
patent infringement.

even the second model is in danger *unless* it has reached critical
> mass. By critical mass, I mean it has sufficient base of developers
> that make sure that no one person or one group can subvert it.

I agree with you here but even in this GPL has clear advantage as there is
no question of subverting (that arises only in case one where you have
copyright to the complete source code as in case 1).

> kernel has that critical mass. And a surprisingly large number of
> applications dont have it - and are in danger.

I don't agree with you here. If there are people using an application there
will be some to continue development (see gforge).

as for gpl creating good behaviour - remember it is because of gpl
> that mysql and mono have no external developer base.

paid and no paid FOSS developers are still FOSS developers and the code is
still FOSS. How MySQL becomes second class when all the developers are
getting paid? It is a good thing that the FOSS developers get paid.

> constraint is not there in BSD style applications like postgresql.

As you mentioned earlier unless there is a critical mass there is no way to
save these kind of projects in class 2.

And, like it or not, it *does* make a huge difference.

I have seen GNU classpath developers eagerly waiting to send their copyright
assignments to Sun as soon as they could. All of the GNU Classpath
developers were completely happy about the release of java under GPL see for
example http://kennke.org/blog/2006/11/13/first-rays-of-a-new-rising-sun/

I would venture that apache too has reached critical mass.
I agree


"Value your freedom, or you will lose it, teaches history.
`Don't bother us with politics', respond those who don't want to learn."
         -- Richard Stallman
Me scribbles at http://www.pravi.co.nr

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