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GNU is Not Unix

Interview With Richard Stallman 807

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the men-with-beards-talking dept.
An anonymous reader writes "KernelTrap has a fascinating and lengthy interview with Richard Stallman who founded the GNU Project in 1984, and the Free Software Foundation in 1985. He also originally authored a number of well known and highly used development tools, including the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC), the GNU symbolic debugger (GDB) and GNU Emacs. The interview covers a wide range of topics, from rms's early years, to his current role in the Free Software Foundation. He discusses the current state of GNU/Hurd, the problems with non-free software, and much more."
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Interview With Richard Stallman

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  • Excuse me (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @10:56AM (#11253352)
    This is a GNU/Interview. Get it right please!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:00AM (#11253380)
    Someone should teach the editors how to diagram a sentence.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Needs no subject. Is perfectly clear without one. Are good people. Shouldn't be so hard on them.
    • 1. What good is a diagram when words work fine? I don't need no stinking diagram!

      2. "Headline" also doesn't need the "a" because it is silent. In fact, Led Zeppelin (Jimmy Page actually; he was the brains) chose to spell Led Zeppelin without the "a" because they thought people would be too stupid to realize it was not "leed" Zeppelin. Abolish the "a" now!

      Um, it is safe to move along now.
  • by jeff13 (255285) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:07AM (#11253408) Homepage
    ... and as usual the person who makes it his business to inform, impower, and proliferate benefitial technology will be ignored by the greedy, insane corporate monster and comments against him will be moded up by the PR sock-puppets who frequent Slashdot.

    btw frell off sock-puppets. `(
    • by bonch (38532) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @12:09PM (#11254075)
      Sorry, but a lot of developers will take offense to being called "anti-social" just because they, gasp, don't release all their source code and make everything free. Stallman talks up his fight for freedom, but then pushes against the freedom of choice. If a lot of people disagree with Stallman, it's because he's so extreme and unreasonable about everything. His solutions to problems are all One Big Solution that is supposed to fit every situation like a glove, and having such a rigid, unchanging viewpoint can be dangerous or, at the least, counterproductive and anti-progress. In fact, part of that weird hostility toward corporations and non-free software that seems to facilate such theory-driven ideologies is part of the reason I switched to BSD. The community there just seems more interested in getting things done and letting people do whatever the hell they want with the code rather than forcing everyone into a rigid ideology, which is the opposite of free choice. That is the great irony, for me anyway, of Stallman's brand of thinking when he talks about "freedom."

      Think of all the criticism against George Bush for being unrigid and unchanging in his views regardless of the situation. "No one can tell him he's wrong," said the ads. Well, that's how some feel about Stallman.
      • Stallman talks up his fight for freedom, but then pushes against the freedom of choice.

        Yea, that bastard. I mean, I want to live in a country where I can do whatever I want. Why would I want to give everyone else the same freedoms I have? That's just crazy. I should be one of the few elite who can go off and kill people without consequences while anyone outside the elite who dares even touch one of us will be brutaly executed. And maybe from time to time, we'll actually follow up on peons killing peo
      • by daigu (111684)

        Non-free software is meant to be distributed to the public. Custom software is meant to be used by one client. There's no ethical problem with custom software as long as you're respecting your client's freedom.

        Stallman doesn't argue that you should to release all your source code. He does argue that you should respect your client's freedom, e.g., the ability to change and change the source code.

        You can do whatever you like. However, let's use a analogy. You are just trying to be practical and get your h

      • by zsau (266209)
        Sorry, but a lot of developers will take offense to being called "anti-social" just because they, gasp, don't release all their source code and make everything free.

        Perhaps that's the point. Perhaps Stallman is offended by people who don't release their code. Stallman is all for freedom of choice, but he doesn't want you to choose to limit his freedom.

        When Stallman says that you should release all your code free, you have the option of doing that or not doing that. When you don't release all your code fr
  • Speaking of GCC... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Mick Ohrberg (744441) <mick.ohrberg@EUL ... m minus math_god> on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:10AM (#11253438) Homepage Journal
    ...here [groklaw.net] is a Gloklaw [groklaw.net] story about a patent (U.S. Patent number 6,836,883, titled "Method and system for compiling multiple languages", described as a method or "process involving the parsing and analyzing of more than one source language to produce a common language file that may then be read by the same or another front end system.") that was awarded to Microsoft. Says PJ, "The patent cites the Free Software Foundation's GCC in the prior art section." Microsoft's motivation for applying for this patent is: "The protection and licensing of intellectual property allows companies and individuals to obtain a return on investment, sustaining business and encouraging future rounds of research and investment in the IT industry."
    • I am completely ignorant of such things, but wouldn't that mean that GCC basically gets a free pass on such methods? I mean, if the patent explicitly states that GCC has been doing this for years, then don't they have a pretty strong legal basis for being allowed to continue to do so?
      • I mean, if the patent explicitly states that GCC has been doing this for years, then don't they have a pretty strong legal basis for being allowed to continue to do so?

        While clearly beyond reach of the patent as it stands now, GCC might be vulnerable if it seeks to improve its own method of operation in some ways. Microsoft then can claim that the new additions are "derrivative" from their patent.

        This is actually much more evil and imbecillic then vulnerability of GCC to this patent. In essence Microsoft n

  • by Garabito (720521) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:12AM (#11253453)
    "It's the GNU operating system, and the Hurd is its kernel."

    Sounds like "There is no God but Allah; Mohammed is His Prophet".

  • Software patents (Score:2, Insightful)

    by northcat (827059)
    They should have asked him about his thoughts on the recent introduction of software patents in India.
  • Surely they mean SNOBOL [fit.edu].
  • by Lejade (31993) * <olivier@mekensl[ ].com ['eep' in gap]> on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:18AM (#11253496) Homepage Journal
    In no particular order:

    - RMS was useful at one time but he should now leave serious persons do the real work.
    - RMS is too extreme
    - RMS is a crackpot
    - RMS is a communist
    - RMS is a dirty hippy that smells bad
    - GNU/Linux is childish/idotic/ego-driven
    - The GPL is not free/ viral etc...

    I just wish for once all the idiots who will inevitably spout their mouth would just shut up.

    Richard Stallman has consistently proved he was a true visionnary. He forsaw the problems with software and copyright law 20 years ago and devised an extremely clever answer : the GPL.

    Not only that but he gave us great software to work with. Some he wrote himself (GCC, GDB, Emacs), some he inspired others [fsf.org] to write.

    He warned us many times when few would listen. About the importance of protecting freedom. About the importance of tracking copyright ownership. About software patents. About the right to read [gnu.org]. Every time he's been criticized, ridiculed or dismissed as a lunatic and every time he was right.

    It is time to recognize Richard Stallman's place in history as a great modern philosopher.

    So I, for one, would like to thank deeply RMS for dedicating his life to our freedom. For standing tall when no one else would.

    Live long, RMS, and never give up.
    • - RMS was useful at one time but he should now leave serious persons do the real work.
      - RMS is too extreme
      - RMS is a crackpot
      - RMS is a communist
      - RMS is a dirty hippy that smells bad

      Let's add:

      - RMS Rocks
      - RMS is CowboyNeal in disguise

      and have ourselves a poll!

    • Cue the GNU/assinine comments...

      In no GNU/particular order:

      - GNU/RMS was useful at one time but he should now leave GNU/serious GNU/persons do the real GNU/work.
      - GNU/RMS is too extreme
      - GNU/RMS is a crackpot
      - GNU/RMS is a GNU/communist
      - GNU/RMS is a dirty hippy that smells bad
      - GNU/GNU/Linux is childish/idotic/ego-driven
      - The GNU/GPL is not GNU/free / GNU/viral etc...

      That was always the biggest complaint I heard about RMS: his insistence that Linux be called GNU/Linux.
    • Speaking of asinine comments...

      "Any development of non-free software is harmful and unfortunate"
      "It is better to develop no software than to develop non-free software."
      "You've got to make sure that your workers are the lowest paid anywhere in the world...Otherwise we're all going to run away and punish you."
    • You're not from the US, are you?

      There's this Polish saying that I believe is present in many other cultures: It's hard to be a prophet in your own country. While he may be recognised around the world as a great thinker, philosopher, he is almost universally despised in his native USA.

      Robert
  • by ACK!! (10229) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:21AM (#11253525) Journal
    I mean I love most of the gnu software I have running on my system and god bless any contributor to that effort but - woh! - he says some of the funniest things like:

    The Workplace:
    JA: What if your job requires you to use non-free software?

    Richard Stallman: I would quit that job. Would you participate in something anti-social just because somebody pays you to?


    I mean come on. Both free and non-free software has its place in the modern world and I need to take technology to a religious level like I need a hole in my head.

    He is sooo wacky.

    • by l4m3z0r (799504) <kevin.uberstyle@net> on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:37AM (#11253712)
      I need to take technology to a religious level like I need a hole in my head.

      I'd hardly classify that as a religious level. Most people have certain principles that they won't compromise. For instance I refuse to work for the DOD or a company that is contracted by them. I refuse to work for any organization that develops weapons systems or supports them. Is my unwillingness to be part of the war machine on the religious level? I wouldn't say so.

      He is sooo wacky.

      I would argue that an individual who has no principles which can't be bought is truly the whacky one.

      • The development and maintanence of weapons systems protects us. To infer that they are bad things is not only insulting, it is unwise.
    • by leomekenkamp (566309) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:39AM (#11253729)
      Why is he wacky? Because he has believes and stands up for them?

      Would you work for a company that is using child labour? Would you work for a company that uses slave labour? I certainly would not; child labour and slavery is anti-social IMHO.

      RMS thinks and feels that not-free software is anti-social. You might start a debate on that (and against RMS, well, I would put my money on him), but please refrain calling someone who 'fights'/works for freedom of other people wacky.

      RMS is one of the few extremists in this world that actually make this world a better place.

      • I guess its a good thing to have convictions, all other things being equal. And there is a place in the world for folks that simply *do not comprimise*.

        But if an average person were to follow their beliefs through to the logical conclusion, they would often find that it simply wasn't worth it. I think the trick is finding a set of beliefs that you can take pretty far downstream without feeling like you're following them to the great expense of your own life.

        This may sound shallow, but I think it is a go
        • If you believe that, move to Switzerland.

          You do know that Switzerland is one of the most heavily armed nations on Earth, has compulsory military service, and (almost) every adult male keeps an assault rifle and three full magazines in their home as a matter of course?

          The Swiss have remained neutral for centuries because they are double-hard bastards and no-one - not even Hitler or Stalin at their most megalomaniac - dared to attack them.
    • I have to wonder if he uses a car built in the last 10 years, flys on an airliner, uses the telephone, uses a TV or for that matter drives in a town with traffic lights, uses a cisco or some other router? If you are not Amish you use non-free software. I agree RMS is a flake and goes way to extrem. Shouldn't freedom include the right not to give away your work if you do not want too? I remeber back in the 70s a guy made a homebuilt airplan called the Pollen special. It was a 300 mph homebuilt. People got a
  • I don't get it... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bomb_number_20 (168641) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:23AM (#11253543)
    I can already see the way these posts are heading.

    Talk about a bunch of ungrateful children...

    He is now and has been consistent in his views. He hasn't changed his message. The fact that his message is still relevant after 20 years should say something.

    Richard Stallman, over the past 20 years, has done more than most of you put together will do in your entire lifetime and all you can do is complain and make fun of him for it.
  • "Free Software" vs. "Open Source":
    "...for our readers that may therefore be confused themselves, can you explain the differences, and why it is important to get it right?"

    Richard Stallman: "...In the free software movement, our goal is to be free to share and cooperate. We say that non-free software is antisocial because it tramples the users' freedom, and we develop free software to escape from that..."


    I found this to be the vaguest answer possible to the question. As someone who is not on the front lin
  • by Baldrson (78598) * on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:29AM (#11253599) Homepage Journal
    Programmers write free software to subvert a system that denies them the protection of their property rights by pricing legal defense of those rights out of their reach.

    If they were able to capture enough of the value of what they write to pay for the legal defense of their rights they'd probably write a lot less free software.

    This gets to a fundamental problem with the incentives created by taxing things other than asset value:

    Possession is rewarded over creation.

    Think about it: Once you possess something, you basically have no tax burden. You enjoy the benefits of young men dutifully going out to die in wars, the entire legal edifice describing and protecting your rights and without you having to pay a cent. You can just soak the public for these benefits.

    Taxing everything but possession (income, capital gains, sales, value added, etc) is just a way to tax the creative process.

    Naturally, creators who are trying to get a leg up on the situation end up selling their creations cheap to those whose possession is subsidized by the tax payments of the creators.

    Well, there is one exception to this rule of no taxation of possession -- and that is the patent maintanence fee. Patents are the only assets that the government taxes. This is an incredibly regressive tax hitting hardest those who are earliest to support the realization of a new technology's value -- forcing them to sell their rights ("assign") cheap to someone who has been sitting around enjying the government's protection.

    It all adds up to a very nasty way of sucking capital out of the hands of creators and giving over to the hands of possessors.

    So the creators, unable to change the tax laws to tax assets rather than creative processes (becuse they can't buy the Ways and Means Committee) become socialists.

    This is directly related to the issue of outsourcing since if programmers who had created the value of the information industry had been allowed to retain the value they created, they wouldn't need jobs. The corporations would be paying them royalties or be paying companies owned by the programmers for the rights to their software instead of just throwing creators out on the street after extracting their youth and creativity.

    A system that would work would elimnate all existing taxes (although not necessarily tariffs) and just tax net assets at a rate equal to the interest rate on the national debt -- exempting from taxation the same assets that are exempted by personal bankruptcy protection: home and tools of the trade.

  • I work as a software developer for a small technology company. We do custom software for our clients. I used to feel very slightly guilty for not developing Free software, but after reading the interview I no longer feel that way.

    Richard Stallman: Non-free software is meant to be distributed to the public. Custom software is meant to be used by one client. There's no ethical problem with custom software as long as you're respecting your client's freedom.

    What he's saying is that there's an ethical differenc

  • Refuting RMS? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Cally (10873) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:39AM (#11253742) Homepage
    On the recent Slashdot story about an interview with the MS people who worked on SP2, I for suggestions about asked how such presumably intelligent, well-intentioned & sincere people dealt with the cognitive dissonance of working on non-Free software [slashdot.org]. (Just lookin back to get the HREF I'm somewhat disturbed by the amount of time I must have put into all that lot... /me wonders what I'm getting into this time :) Obviously Microsoft developers are at one of the most extreme opposite ends of the spectrum from RMS, the FSF, and anyone releasing GPL'd software, but I think the question applies to anyone with enough technical understanding to grok the issue. How (to put it somewhat flamebaitily ;) do they sleep at night?

    Amongst the flames & trolls there were some detailed & reasonably thoughtful responses (including from someone who's got as 'Foe' - hi spectecjr:) - & the only argument I heard that stood up as not obvious Straw men, irrelevant, or based on a misunderstanding, was that some developers do not consider the four freedoms described by the GNU philosophy page [fsf.org] to be fundamental freedoms.

    The best counter-argument to that that I can think of is that it is only a matter of degree; the freedom to study, redistribute (etc) software is less important than the freedom not to be beaten to death by government clowns, say, but that does not mean that the software freedoms are not, in themselves, important.

    I have a bad feeling I'm getting into areas dealt with my philosophy-101; can anyone else (a) advance sensible reasons why intelligent, informed people might produce non-Free s/w, and (b) refutations of those reasons.

    Please, no confusion with 'Open source' development advantages or disadvantages - I'm specifically interested in the purely MORAL arguments made by RMS.

    Arguments such as 'my family has to eat', 'how would programs like Photoshop be developed if it was Free?', "I am free to distribute software I write under any license I like", etc etc, are missing the point. I'd hate to find myself deciding that the reason is that proprietary developers consciously dismiss the moral / ethical issues as uninteresting or irrelevant. I know there are a lot of people here working on proprietary as well as Free s/w and you can't all be trolls :)

    • Re:Refuting RMS? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by NDPTAL85 (260093)
      " On the recent Slashdot story about an interview with the MS people who worked on SP2, I for suggestions about asked how such presumably intelligent, well-intentioned & sincere people dealt with the cognitive dissonance of working on non-Free software .... ... Arguments such as 'my family has to eat', 'how would programs like Photoshop be developed if it was Free?', "I am free to distribute software I write under any license I like", etc etc, are missing the point. I'd hate to find myself deciding that
      • Re:Refuting RMS? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Chris Burke (6130) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @01:03PM (#11254628) Homepage
        Did it ever occur to you that people work on proprietary software to make money, because they like to buy all sorts of things that require money, and they don't see software as a movement, but rather as "stuff" that runs on a computer? The main issue the people you cannot understand have is you try to equate the 1's and 0's of binary software with the issues involving civil rights or religious freedom or democracy. They're not the same. Software is just a "thing" that people use. The others are real issues that are important to fight and die for. One really sounds like a loser when one tries to elevate software to that level. I know the first thought in *MY* mind is "Why don't you find a REAL cause instead of pretending you have a valid crusade with this free software business"?

        Everything is just "stuff"; programs are just "stuff" than run on a computer and books are just "stuff" that are spewed out by a printing press. Would you call me a crackpot for equating the 'A's 'B's and 'C's of the printed page with civil liberties?

        The question of civil liberties is never about the "stuff", because it's just "stuff". The question arises when humans decide what they're going to allow other humans to do with the stuff. When you're allowed to have a printing press, but restricted in what you can print with it or in whether you can change how it operates, that is a civil rights issue.

        The computer is the printing press of our time. It has been made abundantly clear that certain forces wish to take as much control of this society-changing invention out of the people's hands and into their hands as possible. All the speculative warnings [gnu.org] about where non-free software is taking us is coming frighteningly close to reality. The only reason this may fail is because some people started to treat this like a civil rights issue ten, twenty years ago and now a system that respects your rights exists.

        Nobody has had to fight and die for these rights; thank God. That doesn't make it a non-issue. And I guarantee you I would fight and die for them just like I would fight against a person who said a printing press was just "stuff".

        Its like trying to make a moral issue out of wearing white shoes after labor day.

        Yeah, that's ridiculous, because shoes are just stuff! By the way, I'm the government and if you wear white shoes after labor day you'll be imprisoned and/or shot. Have a nice day.
      • Re:Refuting RMS? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by D. Book (534411) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @03:52PM (#11256747)
        Software is just a "thing" that people use. The others are real issues that are important to fight and die for. One really sounds like a loser when one tries to elevate software to that level. I know the first thought in *MY* mind is "Why don't you find a REAL cause instead of pretending you have a valid crusade with this free software business"?

        Others have addressed your "stuff" characterisation for software, so perhaps I could address the specific point above with a quote from Sam Williams' biography of RMS, Free as in Freedom [oreilly.com]:

        Stallman's unwillingness to seek alliances seems equally perplexing when you consider his political interests outside of the free software movement. Visit Stallman's offices at MIT, and you instantly find a clearinghouse of left-leaning news articles covering civil-rights abuses around the globe. Visit his web site, and you'll find diatribes on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the War on Drugs, and the World Trade Organization.


        Given his activist tendencies, I ask, why hasn't Stallman sought a larger voice? Why hasn't he used his visibility in the hacker world as a platform to boost rather than reduce his political voice.

        Stallman lets his tangled hair drop and contemplates the question for a moment.

        "I hesitate to exaggerate the importance of this little puddle of freedom," he says. "Because the more well-known and conventional areas of working for freedom and a better society are tremendously important. I wouldn't say that free software is as important as they are. It's the responsibility I undertook, because it dropped in my lap and I saw a way I could do something about it. But, for example, to end police brutality, to end the war on drugs, to end the kinds of racism we still have, to help everyone have a comfortable life, to protect the rights of people who do abortions, to protect us from theocracy, these are tremendously important issues, far more important than what I do. I just wish I knew how to do something about them."


        Despite the energy he puts into the Free Software movement, you'll probably find that RMS spends a lot more time on those real causes you refer to than your average person.
  • GNU/Linux? No. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Yenya (12004) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:40AM (#11253753) Homepage Journal
    I have some karma to burn, so here we are:

    As I wrote in the comment [kerneltrap.org] to another KernelTrap story, using the term "GNU/Linux" (referring to the GCC and glibc essential role in the system) is totally misleading.

    Both GCC and glibc are in the current state despite the RMS and FSF efforts. For GCC, remember the situation from the 2.8 times, when an independent team (egcs) had to fork GCC, because the FSF-managed development of GCC was dead. In the same way remember years of work that H.J.Lu invested in Linux libc, because GNU libc was unmaintained and unusable. And of course the work of Ulrich Drepper, who took GNU libc2 and developed it into a form usable in Linux-based system. Ulrich considers none of his work on glibc to be a part of a GNU project (details here [redhat.com], see the bottom part of the text). And it looks like even the present situation in the GCC development is the same [kerneltrap.org] (anonymous comment at KernelTrap).

    So I can say run GCC/glibc/perl/X.org/TeX/etc/Linux system, but it has nothing special to do with GNU and FSF, and I just prefer the short name "Linux" (named after a single biggest, always-running, and essential component of the system).

    • Re:GNU/Linux? No. (Score:5, Informative)

      by bgat (123664) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @12:08PM (#11254048) Homepage
      Uli didn't start with nothing. So by definition, his work is part of GNU libc. Uli also didn't work gratis, his work was compensated by Red Hat.

      GNU libc had reached a state where it was too substantial for volunteer maintainers to make more progress (though I'll readily admit those volunteers did an amazing job getting libc to that point). Red Hat paid someone to turn it into a product for them.

      Uli is hardly a saint. And don't get me started on my personal run-ins with the guy.

      As for egcs, same story but s/Red Hat/Cygnus Solutions/.

      Short version: GNU needed some heavy lifting. Some enlightened members of corporate America stepped up to the plate.

      And in doing so, proved RMS right and put Linux on the map at the same time. GNU/Linux.
    • Re:GNU/Linux? No. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Dwonis (52652) * on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @01:17PM (#11254787)
      Despite what RMS may or may not say, there is at least one good technical reason to use the term "GNU/Linux" over just "Linux": disambiguation. Not every Linux distribution is GNU-based [wikipedia.org], particularly ones that run in small embedded environments or installation floppies.

      If you say "GNU/Linux", you can make certain assumptions:

      • Your libc is GNU libc
      • #!/bin/bash will work
      • Stuff like "ls /bin -l" and "tar xvjf ..." will work, because you're using GNU coreutils.
      • Your C compiler supports GNU extensions, because you're using the GNU compiler collection

      None of those assumptions can be made when you are talking about just "Linux".

      A similar line of thinking leads people to use the term "TCP/IP" instead of just "Internet Protocol".

  • What is Freedom (Score:5, Insightful)

    by McSnickered (67307) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:42AM (#11253769)
    He really comes across as duplicitous when he says over and over how he is "fighting for freedom" and then says the following:


    JA: What about the programmers...

    Richard Stallman: What about them? The programmers writing non-free software? They are doing something antisocial. They should get some other job.

    JA: Such as?

    Richard Stallman: There are thousands of different jobs people can have in society without developing non-free software. You can even be a programmer. Most paid programmers are developing custom software--only a small fraction are developing non-free software. The small fraction of proprietary software jobs are not hard to avoid.


    So if one freely decides to write a program and not divulge the code, then that person is antisocial? Hey - I don't accuse Colonel Sanders of being antisocial just because he keeps his 11 secret herbs and spices a "secret". And I don't accuse Bill Gates of being antisocial because he refuses to divulge the code to Microsoft Bob. He may be a numbnut, but whom am I to accuse someone of being "antisocial".

    This word "freedom" ... I do not think it means what you think it means.
    • So if one freely decides to write a program and not divulge the code, then that person is antisocial? Hey - I don't accuse Colonel Sanders of being antisocial just because he keeps his 11 secret herbs and spices a "secret". And I don't accuse Bill Gates of being antisocial because he refuses to divulge the code to Microsoft Bob. He may be a numbnut, but whom am I to accuse someone of being "antisocial".

      When Stallman says "social", he is going to the root of the term - talking about society.

      How is it NOT
  • by kompiluj (677438) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @11:46AM (#11253824)
    Is of course the GNU/Darwin [gnu-darwin.org]. Somehow it is what GNU always wanted to have - a GNU running on a microkernel (at least sort of). (I admit, I don't know what licence applies to Darwin).
  • by dreamchaser (49529) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @12:35PM (#11254340) Homepage Journal
    Stallman constantly talks about the freedom of users. What about the freedom of programmers? By this I mean the freedom to decide whether to publish your source or not, to charge money for your work or not. That concept never enters his lexicon. Yes, he has made huge contributions to computing over the years. No, he is not always right.
  • by Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @12:42PM (#11254405) Homepage
    Summary of this entire thread: The Richard Stallman "I Love Me" Thread.
  • by podperson (592944) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @02:05PM (#11255384) Homepage
    It's a shame that Stallman seems to be mostly interested in bashing the Open Source movement.

    1. Open Source is more like Microsoft than GNU:

    "The open source movement promotes what they consider a technically superior development model that usually gives technically superior results. The values they cite are the same ones Microsoft appeals to: narrowly practical values."

    2. Linus Torvalds is a corrupting influence:

    "People know that Linus Torvalds wrote his program Linux to have fun. And people know that Linus Torvalds did not say that it's wrong to stop users for sharing and changing the software they use. If they think that our system was started by him and primarily owes existence to him, they will tend to follow his philosophy, and that weakens our community."

"Only the hypocrite is really rotten to the core." -- Hannah Arendt.

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