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Comment: Re:Unencumbered (Score 1) 294

by DickBreath (#49356239) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Makes Some Code Particularly Good?
Unfortunately, whether or not code is encumbered by patents is not up to the author of the code. That is one (of many) major FAIL of the patent system. Your code, yes yours, could be encumbered by some pending patent, that the 'inventor' is keeping from being issued until your code is suddenly making money. Poof! Patent is now granted and you are infringing.

Comment: Re:must fail (Score -1, Flamebait) 294

by DickBreath (#49356205) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Makes Some Code Particularly Good?
> Code needs to fail in an easy to understand and predictable way.

Being written in C++ is a sure way to guarantee both!

Did it fail in an easy to understand way? Yes. It is easy to understand that it failed because it was written in C++.

Was it predictable that it would fail? Again, yes.


Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to be promoted to a decision making role.

Comment: A Question That Almost Answers Itself (Score 1) 131

by DickBreath (#49353641) Attached to: GAO Denied Access To Webb Telescope Workers By Northrop Grumman
> If the project was "back on track" as the agency and Northrop Grumman claim,
> then why has the budget suddenly increased by another billion?

The project is back on track to be able to stick around for another fiscal year in order to ask for another budget increase.

See? How difficult was that? Simple actually.

Comment: RMS's ego isn't as big when one examines evidence (Score 4, Interesting) 165

by jbn-o (#49323921) Attached to: RMS Talks Net Neutrality, Patents, and More

Looking at the kerfuffle around LLVM/Clang you can find more of the same attitude from RMS—he doesn't have the ego invested in the work as his detractors claim he does (often without examples cited at all, sometimes as with the grandparent poster with wrong examples cited):

For GCC to be replaced by another technically superior compiler that defended freedom equally well would cause me some personal regret, but I would rejoice for the community's advance. The existence of LLVM is a terrible setback for our community precisely because it is not copylefted and can be used as the basis for nonfree compilers -- so that all contribution to LLVM directly helps proprietary software as much as it helps us.

Those aren't the words of someone who places ego above the good of the project or the public. For software freedom seekers, software freedom and defense of software freedom is the goal and good for the public.

Comment: Software freedom for all software. (Score 2) 120

by jbn-o (#49293235) Attached to: Persistent BIOS Rootkit Implant To Debut At CanSecWest

Firmware is software and computer users still need software freedom for all published software. This hasn't changed since Richard Stallman reached conclusions about the ethics of software over 30 years ago. Changing what device the software is loaded into or the form it takes when loaded doesn't change any of the underlying issues that all have to do with how people treat each other. This is also not an issue to be properly understood by "open source" focus on convenience, caving into business desires, or developmental methodology.

Comment: Placating consumerism leads to loss of freedom. (Score 1) 214

by jbn-o (#49288419) Attached to: The GNU Manifesto Turns Thirty

If you want to say that RMS's position is pedantic, that's fine. Just understand that RMS has slightly different values than open source advocates and he works to keep those values. RMS views open source as dangerous to the freedom to have all changes made available because open source does not make any guarantee about it. Others, like ESR, aren't quite as concerned about that as long as some version of the source is available. Thus, you get open source. Free and open source software are not exactly the same thing though.

Open source advocates think that proprietary software is acceptable and free software advocates don't think proprietary software is ever acceptable, as RMS points out in his essays and talks dating back many years (1, 2). I'd hardly call that difference pedantic—being overly concerned with formal rules and trivial points of learning like a pedant. And the preservation of software freedom copyleft makes real can sometimes be okay to forgo but only after careful consideration. But the open source movement doesn't distinguish among licenses based on copyleft because that would draw attention to the very thing that movement was designed to silence and distract discussion away from talk of—software freedom.

Comment: The Intercept has interesting & important Q&am (Score 1) 216

by jbn-o (#49288221) Attached to: France Will Block Web Sites That Promote Terrorism

Glenn Greenwald asks a more interesting and important question than /. encourages its readers to consider when Greenwald asks "What's Scarier: Terrorism, or Governments Blocking Websites in its Name?" and then he answers it, "More damage has been inflicted historically by censorship than by the "terrorism" used to justify it.". Considering how little of a threat terrorism is in the US relative to other known dangers ('Terrorism Still Less Deadly in US Than Lack of Health Insurance, Salmonella', 'Gun Murders vs. Terrorism by the Numbers') one has to wonder about other western countries such as France.

Comment: Re:That's Easy, Jomo! (Score 1, Informative) 255

by Bruce Perens (#49230369) Attached to: On Firing Open Source Community Members

Hi AC,

This is sort of self-contradictory, so I don't really need to respond to it directly. I just want to point one thing out. I can't afford to work for any company as less than a C-level employee. It would be a salary cut from my current business.

Not to mention that I'd not like it.

Fools ignore complexity. Pragmatists suffer it. Some can avoid it. Geniuses remove it. -- Perlis's Programming Proverb #58, SIGPLAN Notices, Sept. 1982