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GCC 4.2.1 Released 449

Posted by Zonk
from the licensing-with-drama dept.
larry bagina writes "GCC 4.2.1 was released 4 days ago. Although this minor update would otherwise be insignificant, it will be the final GPL v2 release; all future releases will be GPL v3. Some key contributors are grumbling over this change and have privately discussed a fork to stay as GPL v2. The last time GCC forked (EGCS), the FSF conceded defeat. How will the FSF/GNU handle the GPL 3 revolt?"
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GCC 4.2.1 Released

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  • The threat... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by NoxNoctis (936876) on Monday July 23, 2007 @05:48AM (#19953617) Homepage
    ...of a fork for a large and well known project like GCC can definitely shake things up. All the people involved just need to remember that if they do fork GCC, they've got a lot of work to do. I'm not saying it shouldn't be done, but some people just whine about licenses, threaten to fork, and hope for the developers to hear their cry. I hate to say it, but GCC under GPLv3 is coming, and no amount of whining will change that.
  • by not shoveling GPL3 down our throats?

    How does making a license freely available for software authors to use translate into "shoveling [sic] GPL3 down our throats"?

  • by zsau (266209) <slashdot@thecartographers . n et> on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:04AM (#19953689) Homepage Journal
    Once more, Slashdot's editors demonstrate that they are here solely for adviews and not to provide "news for nerds" or "stuff that matters". The ECGS fork will be nothing like the current fork. ECGS was forked for technical/organisational reasons: GCC was being developed much like a closed-source program with a free licence, which resulted in a stagnating compiler and unhappy would-be contributors. ECGS should the superiority of the "bazaar"/open-source development method of the "cathedral"/closed-source method in this particular context. All of this is well-known information you can find just about anywhere on the web.

    Given that GCC development will remain open, this fork cannot be compared. On the other hand, we do have another situation that might be considered similar: The X.org/XFree86 fork. XFree86 was developed under a free software licence, but with 4.4 this was changed to a non-free licence. X.org forked the most recent free version and has basically completely replaced XFree86.

    But, of course, this is still not perfectly comparable. XFree86 was using a relatively closed development method, and the X.org fork's more open style saw it rejuvinated: And indeed, this was part of the purpose of the fork. A GPLv2 GCC fork will not see this sort of rejuvination, as GCC has already seen the benefit for it of an open method, and continues to use it. (See: The EGCS fork the article poster referred to.)

    In addition, the XFree86 licence was widely regarded as being non-free and some major distributions (e.g. Debian, Fedora) considered it completely inappropriate for inclusion. It was made unilaterally without discussion without relevant stakeholders. The GPLv3, however, has had public draft releases and discussion including many major distributors and producers of free software. Although it removes certain freedoms distributors had with GPLv2 (which, largely, went completely against the spirit of the GPLv2), the GPLv3 has the agreement of the people needed to make it work. There will be basically top-down push for adoption as there was with XFree86/X.org.

    My prediction: Any GPLv2 fork of GCC will be largely forgotten in a year or two.
  • by LingNoi (1066278) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:05AM (#19953691)

    Some key contributors are grumbling over this change and have privately discussed a fork to stay as GPL v2.
    Who are they? You could have linked to the mailing list or somewhere these "key contributors" where discussing it but you didn't.

    Smells like FUD.
  • by Svenne (117693) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:05AM (#19953695) Homepage
    Oh, will he be forking GCC? No? Then how is that relevant to the topic at hand?
  • by vivaoporto (1064484) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:07AM (#19953705)

    Some key contributors are grumbling over this change and have privately discussed a fork to stay as GPL v2. The last time GCC forked (EGCS), the FSF conceded defeat. How will the FSF/GNU handle the GPL 3 revolt?"
    (emphasis mine)

    The use of weasel words [wikipedia.org], speculation of "private discussions" (how would one in the public know the content of a private discussion without being a part of it himself?) and the use of the textbook definition of straw man [wikipedia.org] by bringing up the unrelated fact that one fork have been successful in the past and implying that, because of that, one "revolt" is imminent, is nothing by an ill flamebait, in order to generate controversy and the unavoidable licensing flamewar that it will certainly ensue.

    This is sad because Slashdot used to be a place where, when a new version of software were posted, the discussion were directed to the changelog and the new features, fixed bugs, and this particular article didn't even mentioned that. It was a cheap shot at GPLv3, a license that seems to have lots of people that dislikes it, people that aren't even affected by it in the first place. GPL doesn't cover use, only distribution.

    Sad, sad, sad, this used to be a cool blog with real "news for nerds" but lately it seems more interested in generating polemic and the page views that accompany it.

    DISCLAIMER: Nothing in my post shows any support (or lack of) for any of the mentioned licenses, nor discusses the their merit (or lack of). So keep me out of the flamewar.
  • by KNicolson (147698) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:17AM (#19953759) Homepage
    I've not studied the details of GPL v3, but I believe there will no new restrictions of programs built with a v3'd GCC. For example, we can still built our TiVo-ised closed source DRMed patent-encumbered for sale software without fearing the wrath of RMS, or at least no additional rwrath from him.
  • Re:The threat... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Ohreally_factor (593551) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:22AM (#19953789) Journal
    I think it's more than possible. I think we can consider it as good as forked when we look at all of the interested parties, some of whom have a big financial interest in having a GPL 2 fork.

    The pity is that it might not be possible to merge the forks down the road. That used to be one of the strengths of the GPL, the ability to merge.
  • by vandan (151516) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:22AM (#19953791) Homepage
    Basically people who want to write non-GPL software oppose GPL3 ( and also people pushing DRM ). For everyone else ( people writing GPL software, and users who don't write software ), GPL3 is a good step towards protecting us from the oncoming legal onslaught from the commercial software world, headed my Microsoft.
  • Grumbling (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jrumney (197329) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:50AM (#19953907) Homepage

    Some key contributors are grumbling over this change and have privately discussed a fork to stay as GPL v2.

    References? The only grumblings I can see in the GCC mailing lists are about the version number change that accompanies the GPLv3 upgrade. A few developers feel that a license change is not a new feature so the first GPL version should be 4.2.2, not 4.3. And one developer who complains that not allowing backported patches to stay under GPLv2 will be a burdon to companies offering support for older versions (eg Novell, Xandros and Linspire).

  • by H4x0r Jim Duggan (757476) on Monday July 23, 2007 @06:59AM (#19953951) Homepage Journal
    I just read the linked-to email and found no mention of grumbling developers talking about forks.

    On what grounds did Slashdot say this is true???
  • by itsdapead (734413) on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:11AM (#19954011)

    How does making a license freely available for software authors to use translate into "shoveling [sic] GPL3 down our throats"?
    1. FSF/GNU hold the copyright to many crucial open source software projects (not least GCC, libc*) and will almost certainly migrate these to GPLv3. So even if the linux kernel and other individual projects stay with GPLv2 all Linux distributors will either have to fork the "GNU" part of GNU/Linux or be bound by the GPLv3 in respect of parts of their products (...the "mere aggregation" clause means that the GPLv3 doesn't have to extend to the whole distro, but you're still "distributing" the GPLv3 bits). The fact that FSF asks for copyright assignment means that they are free to switch - other complex projects that include third-party code licensed as "GPLv2 only" don't have that luxury.
    2. FSF encouraged users of the GPLv2 to adopt the "or later..." clause - and it was included in the sample "boilerplate" wording in the "How to use the GPL" documentation. This means that a lot of authors have placed their trust in the FSF not to break the spirit of the GPL. The GPLv3 is more restrictive than v2 (the FSF makes no secret of this) so the practical upshot is that "downstream" recipients of your "GPLv2 or later" software can redistribute it under a more restrictive license - technically in breach of the spirit of GPL. While I don't think many authors intended that the "right to TiVOize" and the "right to sell dubious patent protection" should be among the freedoms that should be passed on, maybe the "right to redistribute this software without having to employ an IP lawyer to decipher the license for you" was kind of implied...

    (* LibC is, of course, LGPL which is less "viral" than GPL - but I haven't seen much debate about v3 of LGPL...)

  • by Asmodai (13932) on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:12AM (#19954017) Homepage
    With all due respect to the people hacking GCC, this is a grey area you do not want to worry about when compiling your code. Period.
  • by Timothy Brownawell (627747) <tbrownaw@prjek.net> on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:21AM (#19954049) Homepage Journal

    For everyone else ( people writing GPL software, and users who don't write software ), GPL3 is a good step [...]

    No, GPLv3 is significantly different from GPLv2, and some of us think that the new version really, really, sucks.

  • Re:Just my 2 cents (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:24AM (#19954065)
    > I don't use other peoples code

    Then you have no problem. If you link against a lib, check the license. Most libs are BSD or LGPL and permit linking without requiring you to release your source.

    > I'm halfway tempted to switch my development to a Mac

    What compiler do you think Apples XCode uses?

    > if things keep going the way they are though I might just have to start looking at another platform.

    I'm witness to the awesome power of FUD.
  • To summarise your arguments:
    1. Linux distributors choosing to distribute GPLv3 binaries will be able to do so without changing what they're doing now.
    2. You don't understand GPLv3 and think others might be confused too.
    None of this addresses the question: How does releasing GCC amount to shoveling the license down our throats?
  • Re:Just my 2 cents (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:28AM (#19954089)
    The reason you don't have problems on Windows is you're either using a commercial compiler or one with a different license, right? What does that have to do with differences between Windows and Linux?
    You have to keep track of the licenses of all libraries/tools you use on Windows as well.

    In this case you're OK as long as you just use the compiler for compiling your code (linking against libc/libc++) as (from what I understand) only the compiler will be put under GPL3.

    If you want to use freely available libraries/tools you have to accept their license, otherwise just don't use it, simple really.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:30AM (#19954099)
    Perhaps by letting the GPL2 users contemplate the possibility of a world full of linspire-microsoft style 'patent peace' agreements.
  • by Timothy Brownawell (627747) <tbrownaw@prjek.net> on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:43AM (#19954149) Homepage Journal

    I think that FSF has mis-used the trust developers have placed on them with GPLv3, by making it incompatible.

    If it was going to be compatible, it would have to be the exact same license.

    One feature of GPL is that it claims that the entire program has to be distributed under whatever terms, with no additional restrictions. So if GPLv3 has less restrictions that GPLv2, v3 code wouldn't be allowed to be distributed under v2. If it had more restrictions, then v2 code wouldn't be allowed to be distributed under v3.

    If I had placed some code in GPLv2, and did not pay much attention to the 'or later' clause, what essentially has happened now is that my code is also licensed with a license (GPLv3) which I do not necessarily agree with. GPLv3 is incompatible with v2, so basically somebody can add GPLv3 code to the project and then you have two incompatible forks, with the v3 fork being able to use the v2 code, but not vice-versa.

    Yes. This is why you should pay attention to what you agree to.

    You can argue that the spirit is the same for GPLv2 and GPLv3. But my counter-argument for this is that it is the same "spirit" which argues that LGPL is bad (and glibc better move to GPL) or that all proprietary software is immoral. Everyone who liked GPLv2 may not agree with these sentiments.

    Yeah, the only "spirit" that stays the same between them is the spirit of the FSF. The spirit of a license necessarily must be contained entirely within that license, and the contents of v2 and v3 are very different (from "share and share alike" to "share, and you must share everything").

    If FSF really wanted to take the moral high ground, they should have called the incompatible license SGPL or some other name, and asked the developers politely to move to SGPL as GPLv2 is flawed by their moral standards and SGPL is the solution.

    They asked for people to use the "or any later version" clause specifically so they wouldn't have to do this. Using that clause or not is a judgement call, as to whether you trust the FSF with your license (personally, I don't).

  • by twistedcubic (577194) on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:52AM (#19954203)

    No, GPLv3 is significantly different from GPLv2, and some of us think that the new version really, really, sucks.

    If you're of this opinion, why not just read the license? You might change your mind.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:55AM (#19954223)
    Having actual sources removes the Uncertainty and Doubt from FUD.
  • Re:The threat... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by McGiraf (196030) on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:59AM (#19954247) Homepage
    "...conditions you must meet in order to use the software ..."
      GPL v2 and GPLv3 do not restrict you in anyway how you can use the software.
  • by halivar (535827) <bfelgerNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday July 23, 2007 @08:11AM (#19954351) Homepage
    That's one of the reasons people hate the GPLv3. Any time someone says they don't like it, proponents suggest it's because they haven't read it. It's a mite insulting.
  • by Timothy Brownawell (627747) <tbrownaw@prjek.net> on Monday July 23, 2007 @08:11AM (#19954357) Homepage Journal


    No, GPLv3 is significantly different from GPLv2, and some of us think that the new version really, really, sucks.

    If you're of this opinion, why not just read the license? You might change your mind.

    Why do you assume that anyone who doesn't like it hasn't read it?

    I have read it (and based my last couple .sig's on it, even), and I find the Tivo section to make it sound very much like "You are free to use this however you want. Except for things we disagree with.". Which is really a very hollow sort of "freedom", regardless of how bad the "things we disagree with" are.

  • by Scarblac (122480) <slashdot@gerlich.nl> on Monday July 23, 2007 @08:31AM (#19954471) Homepage

    You are totally, completely free to _use_ a GPLv3 program for whatever you want, and you're even guaranteed to be able to do that on the device it came on, if any. Of course, if you want to distribute the program yourself, you have to give receivers all the same rights.

    That doesn't sound like "you are free to use this however you want, except for things we disagree with" at all, to me.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 23, 2007 @08:34AM (#19954497)
    IIRC GPLv2 defines source as the "preferred way of making changes to the program", not as the thing being compiled. In your case the source code is the changes to the compiler. Period. Not distributing it means you're under violation of the GPL.

    What you're dong is akin to distributing the .asm or .o files. Sure, you can compile / build your program with them, but that's not the source code. That's not how you make your changes.

    That's not to say you can't pull that trick more subtly. You might need some compiler extensions which are independant of your program, but all the logic for your program is there.

    There are multiple ways to circumvent the GPL, but that's not one of them.

    (And no, I'm not going to list them. I like the FSF)
  • by NickFortune (613926) on Monday July 23, 2007 @08:45AM (#19954565) Homepage Journal

    It's worth noting that the linked to article actually contains nothing about GCC developers complaining about GPLv3.

    Very true, and it would be foolish to assume that we heading for the sort of apocalyptic sundering of the community prophesied by GPLv3 skeptics. On the other hand, I think it's undeniable that the community is divided over the issue.

    How serious the objections are, and how large the dissenting camp... that remains to be seen. If the FSF consultancy works as intended there should be little in the way of serious opposition. On the other hand, if they've placed Stallman's political agenda ahead of the needs of the community (as some have suggested) then we may be in for a rocky ride.

    Either way, we'll find out soon enough.

  • by gnasher719 (869701) on Monday July 23, 2007 @08:51AM (#19954625)
    But that doesn't put actually any restrictions on me. I don't care one bit what Microsoft wants me to do or not to do.

    Otherwise, here is how I can destroy the use of the gcc compiler on Redhat in two seconds:

    I, gnasher719, hereby promise not to sue any Redhat Linux users for use of any patents that I own that are used in Redhat Linux, unless that Redhat Linux user uses gcc to compile anything.

    Now Redhat Linux users can't use gcc anymore!
    I hope you can see what's wrong with this argument. Exactly the same is wrong with your argument against gcc usage on Linspire.

  • by Timothy Brownawell (627747) <tbrownaw@prjek.net> on Monday July 23, 2007 @09:01AM (#19954725) Homepage Journal

    You are totally, completely free to _use_ a GPLv3 program for whatever you want, and you're even guaranteed to be able to do that on the device it came on, if any. Of course, if you want to distribute the program yourself, you have to give receivers all the same rights.

    That doesn't sound like "you are free to use this however you want, except for things we disagree with" at all, to me.

    Even considering that the entire point of those restrictions was to tell Tivo "you may not use this software for that purpose"? Many ways to use software (almost anything including the word "firmware", for example) necessarily involve redistributing it.

    (Also of interest is that the FSF's own "Free Software Definition" [fsf.org] demands freedom of (re)distribution. Therefore I consider GPLv3 to be not only non-free, but hypocritical.)

  • by MysteriousPreacher (702266) on Monday July 23, 2007 @09:04AM (#19954731) Journal
    "the new version really, really, sucks." ranks alongside such great arguments as "Your mum" and "Because I said so". That's probably why it was suggested that they read the licence.
  • by jez9999 (618189) on Monday July 23, 2007 @09:05AM (#19954745) Homepage Journal
    make it sound very much like "You are free to use this however you want. Except for things we disagree with.".

    The GPLv2 already does this! It says, "you can use this how you want, except several things, one of which is modifying -> compiling -> distributing it without the modified source."

    Which is really a very hollow sort of "freedom", regardless of how bad the "things we disagree with" are.

    If you say so. I think it's a prefectly reasonable level of freedom. If you want 100% freedom, go BSD-licence, but don't expect not to have corporate freeloaders.
  • duh (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Vexorian (959249) on Monday July 23, 2007 @09:20AM (#19954913)
    Obviously many guys are worried about a compiler getting GPL3, they wouldn't be able to modify the compiler and then include the compiler in some tivo like device or whatever GPL3 would make GCC troublesome... Not really getting it, sounds as if some fudders want to call GPL3 dangerous whenever possible...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 23, 2007 @09:40AM (#19955163)
    I know, as I user, I won't download the GPL v2 version with the v3 available. The previous fork was done for technical reasons and the FSF rightfully conceded. This fork is made by friends of Microsoft agains the best interests of the users.
  • by Rashkae (59673) on Monday July 23, 2007 @09:48AM (#19955257) Homepage
    Let me play devil's advocate. What if a company released a new compiler (probably based off an existing proprietary C compiler) and added/changed completely new language symantics. Then they could take any GPL software they like, modify it, and release the new version of the software with source code. The problem is, since they didn't release the compiler, no one could *ever* actually compile a new binary from the source!

    That's exactly what Tivoization is trying to guard against. Only in this case, the hardware makers were using hardware hacks to make the code useless. Note that GPL3 doesn't dictate how you use the code. What it does say, if the binary you distribute, based on GPL code is singed (and that signature is required for the binary to function), then you have to include the key that it's signed with as the GPL source code! That's no different than GPL2 requiring you release all source and scripts needed to compile the source.
  • by Scarblac (122480) <slashdot@gerlich.nl> on Monday July 23, 2007 @09:49AM (#19955273) Homepage

    Even considering that the entire point of those restrictions was to tell Tivo "you may not use this software for that purpose"?

    Woah - TiVo isn't using that software, their customers are using the software. The FSF is telling Tivo, if you're giving our software to your users, you have to give them the ability to change it. If you just allow them to, but then make it impossible to use those changes, then that's taking advantage of a loophole, you should have known it was, and now we're fixing that.

  • by Verte (1053342) on Monday July 23, 2007 @10:11AM (#19955571)
    I think they mean will it stop them contributing, not using.. I'd say unlikely. If Apple, say, were likely to put their own patented code into gcc before, I don't see what the big difference is now- anyone could have taken their patented code before, straight from gcc, legal or not. Apple mainly contribute to the Objective C portions, and I don't think any of it would be patented. I'm not sure what IBM contribute, but given the recent patent deals, I doubt it would be a problem if they did contribute patented stuff.
  • by xappax (876447) on Monday July 23, 2007 @10:12AM (#19955583)
    as a software developer you feel that the new version of GPL was not written with software developers in minds, and for software developers benefit.

    The license was written with hackers and tinkerers in mind. It was designed specifically for our benefit, because it protects our ability to write and modify open source code on consumer hardware devices which employ open source code.

    If that's not important to you personally, fine. But you should realize that as computer use shifts further and further from desktops to phones, pdas, and other highly proprietary platforms, there are a lot of free/open source developers who will appreciate the "rights" protected by GPLv3, even as they complain about it now.
  • by tomhudson (43916) <.moc.nosduh-arab ... .nosduh.arabrab.> on Monday July 23, 2007 @10:18AM (#19955689) Journal

    A lot of us have read it and saying "it sux" is just our way of being polite.

    Its a fuck-up. The gpl was originally about software, and trying to extend it to hardware is inappropriate. It means that GPLv3 code is cut off from a lot of applications, for example, use in running medical devices where you absolutely want to prohibit anyone from changing the binaries; because of provisions for distributing keys, any device containing GPLv3 software is no longer certifiable. Nice way to hand a critical market to Microsoftie, where the blue screen of death is not just a metaphor.

    There are other examples, if you care to do some research; we've commented on them before. The GPLv2 was sufficient to defang the Novell-MS deal, but people panicked. The GPLv3 is a political maneuver that plays right into Microsoft's hands. They would love all free software to move to GPLv3. They'd shit-stain their tidy-whities if it all forked to, say, a BSD license instead. Sun could, for example, merge linux and solaris. Linux with zfs would be an instant hit.

  • ...but there is still nothing they can do to stop others re-distributing the "v2 or later" version of the code under GPLv3.

    Are you sure that this is the case? It would seem to me that they cannot change the text in the COPYING file, and thus the only thing they can do is distribute as "GPLv2 or later" themselves.
  • How does making a license freely available for software authors to use translate into "shoveling [sic] GPL3 down our throats"?
    Maybe you missed it, but this story is about them forcing a lot of people to use a tool under v3 by moving the license of one of GNU's most important tools. That, I think, is the shoveling to which grandparent refers. Y'know, the blatantly obvious one that people in post are also very angry about. Try taking the blinders off long enough to at least understand what your fellow man is saying.
  • by vslashg (209560) on Monday July 23, 2007 @10:53AM (#19956133)

    That's exactly what Tivoization is trying to guard against. Only in this case, the hardware makers were using hardware hacks to make the code useless.
    It's certainly a reasonable position that Tivoization is a problem, though I'm not sure I agree that a software license should concern itself with hardware distribution. But for the sake of argument, let's assume that that TiVo's strategy really is harmful and needs to be prevented in the future.

    If that's the case, then why do the protections only apply to "User Product"s? If Google wanted to use the exact same technique with their search appliance, the GPLv3 would allow it, because a Google search appliance isn't meant to be installed in the home. Why compromise here? It sure feels like, to me, a way for the FSF to stick it to TiVo without pissing off the larger corporations that invest lots of money into free software development. The new version of the GPL is more complex, and it's troublesome when some of that added complexity is devoted to targeting particular uses of software. I thought this was supposed to be about "freedom", but different rules for different players sure doesn't feel like "freedom" to me. That's why I think the GPLv2 is a better license.
  • clang source code (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Wesley Felter (138342) <wesley@felter.org> on Monday July 23, 2007 @12:15PM (#19957403) Homepage
    How about the source code? http://llvm.org/svn/llvm-project/cfe/trunk/ [llvm.org]
  • by the-empty-string (106157) on Monday July 23, 2007 @12:22PM (#19957529)

    Please elaborate upon how "you must make source available" is the same as "you may not distribute this with devices with property X".

    "You must make source available" == "You may not distribute this with devices that make the availability of source code irrelevant."

    If that source cannot be used, it's cold comfort that vendors distribute it.

  • by jythie (914043) on Monday July 23, 2007 @01:49PM (#19958765)
    Yes, but no big powerful companies are in a position to sue Ford out of existence if people make after-market mods. Tivo faces very real legal threats that it really can not afford to fight.

    As for your options... (b) is what they will probably have to do, which will once again make life worse for everyone, including the 1% who want to tinker. (c) will not help since the tinkerers will then start complaining that they are not being allowed to buy thier Tivo (since leasing is apparently also evil). (a) just doesn't make sense.. their 'model' in this case is 'not get sued into bankruptcy'.

    And yes, they used to be able to sell Tivo before that had features like this, and they got threatened for doing it. They didn't wake up one day and say 'hey! let us screw our users and take away a really popular feature for no reason besides feeling like jerks!'.. they woke up one day and said 'if we keep this feature, we very well might not be able to sell ANY Tivos again, so sacrifice one feature to save the rest'.

    I also find it amusing that the people who want to tinker with their Tivo are failing to support Neuro's DVR. So instead of rewarding a company that is trying to appeal to the FSF people, they are punishing a company that isn't 'doing enough'.

    And the FSF wonder why embedded companies don't like them. People aren't willing to vote with their time or their wallets and help companies that do get it.. all they do is whine and make life difficult for companies that are giving back but still close their device.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 23, 2007 @05:17PM (#19961785)
    I will reject any bugs related to them and state explicitly that any gcc > 4.2.1 is not supported and never will be.

    Please make sure to put that in big bold letters on your web page, so people know they have to migrate or fork your project.

    This weekend I have to look for an STL implementation with bounds checking. Now I know not to bother looking at yours. Thanks.
  • Re:Bogus. Poser. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by david_thornley (598059) on Monday July 23, 2007 @07:34PM (#19963321)

    That's not exactly true. I am not holding them hostage; I am giving them a choice - GPL3 software or me. A perfectly free choice, just like the one GPL projects give their users to not touch their code or switch to GPL. Turnabout is fair play.

    You're holding them hostage. If they rely on your uSTL, they may be prevented from moving to a later version of gcc. You, on the other hand, are refusing to move because you dislike GPLv3, not because you are going to have any problems whatsoever with using a GPLv3ed gcc.

    Given that, I'd only use uSTL if I was willing to maintain it myself, and that would be the reaction of most people.

    I fully expect normal people to follow suit and boycott all GPL3 software, and those people (who are precisely the sort for whom I would most like to write for) will never have any problems compiling my projects.

    You're delusional. Hundreds of millions of people use Microsoft products without worrying about the license, and Microsoft licenses are more restrictive than any GPL version, and they're more likely to have an effect than the gcc license. What makes you think there's going to be three people (including you) who will boycott new gcc versions because they don't like the license?

    If you join their commune, I wish you luck, because its members are expected to have a perpetual "desire to contribute" without getting anything in return. For myself, I prefer the capitalist system, where I am paid for my efforts instead of being a penniless slave to society.

    No, they're expected to have at least an occasional desire to contribute, in exchange for getting excellent software. Alternatively, they're expected to improve the software when it's in their own interests. The FSF is quite insistent on the ability to sell GPLed software; if you can't use software commercially, it isn't free by their standards.

    So, why are you maintaining a free software project (or, if you prefer, open source)? Are you being paid? If so, did you consult with your employers/customers? If not, why are you intent on being a "penniless slave"?

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