Posted by: Anonymous Coward
on April 12, 2002 04:15 AM
> Then why don't they do it right away? Remember that they pulled out of their CodeWeaver cooperation just in order to keep things secret.
Partly for practical reasons probably, but frankly, also probably also because they gain a competetive advantage with the effort they use in developing these solutions. As long as they release the code when they start selling it, I don't think anyone should have problem with that. You get the code with the distributed product - that should be good enough.
> So if I contribute a lot to the betterment of my community, am I then allowed some occasional burglary?
Well, no. But there is also a matter of how you deal with it. I have the disctinct impression though, that Lindows plans to play quite fair in this department. If you look in their "warehouse" under the respective products, you will see that credits are made to the relevant projects, and links are made ready to download the code.
I would not be surprised however, that they may have some parts proprietary and that is probably the reason for friction with Codeweavers. Michael Robertson is probably not a free software advocate per se.
>The point is not about spreading Linux at any price (e.g. by making it as dumb and insecure as Windows), but to spread something better than Windows. If 90% of all users prefer dumb and insecure software, we have to educate the users, not adapt the software.
I'm not convinced that this is a good strategy. We haven't realistically got the manpower or incentive to make many millions of people in homes and offices learn commandline, locate packages etc...
A much more realistic goal IMO is to make something that they want to use.
I would preferably find solutions that doesn't compromise security of course, but to the extent it doesn't, i'm convinced that we will still be better off in this department than if Linux remains a fringe phenomenon... In any case security is not a goal in itself, but a means to practical value. There will always be a trade off between security and usablity. The winner should be chosen with regard to maximum practical value.
Linux is to spread free software, which will prevent monopoly locks and and a anti-democratic use of software, and this should be a overriding concern. Problem is, this is pipedream without commercial entrenchment, which is what "dumbed-down" solutions provide.
On a related note, though, I don't share a despise for making sofware that accomodates the needs of non-techincal users. This is merely a different set of tasks to make software perform - ones that deals in human relations, which as matter of craft and inguinity don't stand back to techical task in terms of being interesting and of practical value.