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Slashback: Insectivores, Persistence, Domaination 128

Updates below await your raw, chafed eyeballs anxious for information about new domain names (more than you can eat), developers eating bugs in contrition (more than you want to eat), a question about the EULA bundled with the new Larry Ellison toy (to chew on), and RSM's [Oops. That's "RMS's" -- timothy] reaction to the Qt / TrollTech take on software freedom. MMMmmmmm.

Mastering the new-domains domain You read earlier this week about the new-TLD discussions in Yokohama; inetwiz writes with several handy links if you want to know more details: "According to a report on EFnet, the ICANN executive board is scheduled to make a ruling on the proposed new top-level domain names. The papers which contain the presentations for the new top-level domains can be found here. The meeting topic paper is here. There are hundreds of URLs (a couple-hundred too many to list here!) at the ICANN Web site. For more information on the whole meeting in Yokohama, including Webcasts (woohoo!), check here. Stay tuned to see the approval!"

Can I see your license, please? backtick writes "The new NIC (ThinkNIC.com) runs on Linux and has lots of Linux/GNU software. But to buy one, you have to agree to a EULA which says amongst other things:

"You shall not reproduce, make derivative works of, distribute, rent or lease the Software. You shall not reverse engineer, decompile, disassemble or otherwise attempt to discover the source code of the Software."
Now, I don't know about you, and IANAL, but doesn't the GPL come into play somewhere around here? Maybe I don't understand it as well as I should, but nowhere on the ThinkNIC site or anywhere in any press release have they mentioned the release of any GPL'd updates, etc. Ideas from the legal-type people? (I'd thought about dropping this into Bruce Peren's lap or some of the other savvy people, but thought I'd ask it here instead. I'm sure they read Slashdot!)"

Or is this just boilerplate that legal departments at computer companies sonambulistically [thanks to RealityMaster101, I now know it should be somnambulistically. Thanks! - timothy] slap onto any ol' software release?

The last word is never the last word is never the last advtech writes "Richard Stallman asks BeOpen.com: 'Warwick Allison in your interview says some confused things about the GPL. To prevent the readers from being misled, would you please post the respose?' BeOpen posted his response on their site." Richard M. Stallman simply does not sit still when he disagrees with someone -- and it's nice to see BeOpen willing to post the response.

Please pass the DDT-sauce ... Andrew Welch writes: "I remember some people on /. wanted to track this story when it first appeared here, to see if Ambrosia Software would really go through with it. Well, we are -- we'll be eating bugs as penance for the bugs that were in our software.

Yes, that's right -- the day of reckoning has come, we'll actually be eating bugs at the MacWorld expo, as per our pledge last August! Read the article for the juicy (ick!) details:http://www.AmbrosiaSW.com/news/newslette r/

In a nutshell: 3dfx Interactive, maker of high-end 3D video cards, has teamed up with Ambrosia Software, Inc. to host the public spectacle in their booth #1455 at MacWorld/NYC 2000. In what will amount to a modern-day public lynching, users who have been plagued with bugs in software can delight in seeing Marketdroid Jason Whong eat the crunchy critters as penance for the buggy deeds of the software industry."

I guess I'd rather bugs be in the developers than in the software -- but guys, please leave room for dessert.

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

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Comments Filter:
  • For example, consider a server with DNS name 10e20n.geo. Since it is a server at the second level of the hierarchy (tendegrees.geo), it is responsible for a 10 degree x 10 degree "cell" of the world. The service area of the cell spans from longitude 10 degrees East and latitude 20 degrees North to longitude 20 degrees East and latitude 30 degrees North.

    Sounds like they are working on the foundation for a Metaverse...


  • by Anonymous Coward
    Have yourself a read of this [everything2.net].
  • Next time, read the whole thing.

    Third Party Software distributed under the Gnu General Public License) is licensed to you under the terms of the applicable Third Party Software End User License accompanying such software (the "Excluded Third Party Software"), and, except with respect to Sections 5 ("Disclaimer") and 7 ("Limitations"), the terms of this Agreement do not apply to such Excluded Third Party Software. You may view these Third Party Software End User Licenses using the Help menu in the Netscape browser on your NIC

    Anyone tried to hook a hard drive up to this thing?

  • Actually, bug is not a scientifically accepted word. I think
    you mean `insect'.

    I generally consider bugs to be either glitches (features) in
    programs, or things that go `scwutch' when I step on them.
  • Would all TLD whiners please take a breath and think for a second.

    The sited story said it best with:

    ICANN members, however, have said there are legal and other precedents to prevent widespread confusion.


    How long do think it will be before Microsoft, IBM, Red Hat, and every other company paying for an ICANN vote tells their ICANN reps to change the rules, (or when all else fails, sue ICANN.)

    Let's face it, if you cannot get it between the "WWW" and the "dot" does it really matter? How many suffixes are you willing to go through to find the correct "BobsAdventureTravel"? And if you are "BobsAdventureTravel" how many TLDs should you be forced to buy just to make sure people don't show up at porn site with your name on it?

    The original list was simple, but became corrupt. How about we just refine the list and forbid duplicates before the suffix.
    .org - non profit or social organizations
    .com - commerical business
    .net - ISPs/networks/etc.
    .per - Personal web pages (Okay I made it up)
    .fam - family web pages(You can upgrade from .per
    for free, but you must prove you have a
    family (okay I made this one up too)
    .prn - lets face it, if the military gets their
    own, shouldn't the largest user of
    bandwidth too? (sorry I am just on a roll)
    .XX - lets keep all the countries too, just because it beats .gov.

    At least this way, we do not have to find slashdot.org, or is it net? com? cc? tv? hv?
  • there was a discussion at one point about having .nom for personal web pages.

    I think it would be a great idea.
  • My name is John Smith. I want my own family website. A name that accurately describes my site: smith.tld. Any chance that will be unpopular?

    This is just an example... use at your own risk.

  • I think the proper term is GNU RMS
  • KDE/QT weakens the GPL standing. that said, i think its fairly easy for QT to make their license GPL compatible and remove any doubts. i wonder why they dont want to make a simple change in their licensing to appease the community in general ?
  • by Pentagram ( 40862 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @04:18PM (#926244) Homepage
    Every individual would be allowed to register exactly *one* domain. Limited companies and registered charities would also be able to register *one* domain each.

    Actually, I can see why an individual might want more than one domain; if, say, you needed a domain for your crappy homepage and one for your pet project surrealstorygenerator.com and anonther for your political page, godhatesgeeks.com. Hmm. Actually that's a bad example. Or is it? Most people with seven different domains registered do it for reasons of vanity or speculation. Maybe individuals could be limited to an arbitary number (say three). Of course, if you had a world-renowned forum like, ooh, /. and a crappy homepage, it would be like gnawing through your own testicles to host your crappy homepage on slashdot.org, wouldn't it? Not that I can talk - I've registered a few domains just in the hope of making some quick cash (anyone want to bid for EssEeEx.com?) Still seems to be a ludicrous way of making money though.

    The only reason corporations require extra domains is so that their rivals will not have them. Or so they won't -shock horror- lose a customer because he's typed the URL in wrong. (etoys, anyone?) Nope, I'm sorry. People will just have to learn to type. And if corporations want extra customers they'll find they get more business improving customer service than trying to register everything in sight.

  • Shame, shame. My bible speaketh unto me to fear the Lord.
  • I just emailed Gina Smith asking her if she was aware of the potential issues around the software. Heck, the last thing I want to do is scare a company off of using Linux/Gnu software, etc but it just seemed the best thing to do was ask :-)
  • Like eating bugs is something new. Purdue has been holding the Bug Bowl [purdue.edu] for 4 years now.

    ---
  • Duh, I'm an idiot. After posting that, I realized it sounded like I mean I had JUST THEN emailed her; I meant "I simply emailed her" as soon as I read the EULA :-) Slap me for previewing and STILL getting it wrong! Negative karma for stupidity *sigh*
  • The answer to the domain problem is to
    *NOT CREATE ANY NEW DOMAINS*.

    Let it the world figure it out on it's own. It's heirarchial.
    news.com could easily start handing out subdomains like cnn.news.com, blahblah.news.com, under whatever terms it wants... and so can everyone else.
  • Section 1 of the EULA states:

    "Certain Third Party Software (including without limitation Netscape, RealPlayer and Third Party Software distributed under the Gnu General Public License) is licensed to you under the terms of the applicable Third Party Software End User License accompanying such software (the "Excluded Third Party Software"), and, except with respect to Sections 5 ("Disclaimer") and 7 ("Limitations"), the terms of this Agreement do not apply to such Excluded Third Party Software."

    Since Linux falls under the GPL reverse engineering it should not be a problem. The bit about not reverse engineering blah blah blah is standard stuff. I had identical (or nearly so) language written into the EULA of software we released almost 7 years ago...

    DL
  • (Quote from parent post's sig, in case you turned off sigs):

    IBM - I Blame Microsoft

    LOL!!! I have several other funny expansions of the acronym "IBM" too. Time for another Poll Mastah poll I guess :-)

    Poll: what does IBM stand for?

    1. International Business Machines
    2. International Blue Metal
    3. Idiotic Buggy Machines
    4. I Blame Microsoft
    5. I'll Buy Microsoft!!!
  • A .tld for personal pages would help some, but there are still problems. Consider, if my name is John Q Public, then I probably want public.tld as it is simple and memorable. But there are many "publics" in the world and it will be taken soon. So then I can get johnpublic.tld, or john-public.tld, or jpublic.tld, or jqpublic.tld, etc. But with 6 billion people on earth, those too will also be taken pretty quickly. And so on - Eventually, someone is forced to use non-name dn's, or do silly things like regsiter john-q-public-143.tld (BTW: I'm currently experiencing this in a search for a dn based on my name; rather frustrating) So, is there a way to get around the "name-redundancy" problem?
  • i've at least tried out, and bought most of, every ambrosia game that i know of. now, i can't say anything about the utilities, but i have come across one bug that actually hung the system (Escape Velocity), and it was fixed in the next release. none of the few other problems i've had with ambrosia software requires a patch or a workaroud; they're mostly little graphics hiccups that don't affect gameplay in the least. bottom line is, when your product is as quality as ambrosia's stuff is, with whatever bugs present being honestly mistakes that somehow made it past the testers, you're allowed to come up with oddball marketing schemes like this.

    (for those of you who don't know who ambrosia [ambrosiasw.com] is, they're a small group of mac developers who have been churning out amazing games and pretty cool utilites for years now. they actually care about putting out a good product and less about hype and marketing...just a bunch of Good Guys doing Good Things.)
  • ".moi" is a better choice, methinks :)
  • The original list was simple, but became corrupt.

    .org - non profit or social organizations
    .com - commerical business
    .net - ISPs/networks/etc.

    I checked through all 29 proposals (well, skimmed them pretty well) and was very, very surprised to find that ".xxx" was not proposed by anyone. At least, not that ICAAN is letting us know.

    If no one else does, it might be worth proposing ".xxx" for no other reason than to give porn its own place, and possibly get it out of the .com, .org, and .net space that it's currently smeared through. It would ease browsing for those looking for porn (www.beastiality.xxx, www.bigtitties.xxx, woman-on-woman.liveaction.xxx, etc.) and make filtering porn VERY easy.

    Now if we could only find someone who wants the responsibility for taking the TLD...

  • AFAICS either linking against unmodified GPL code can be done with any license, or it can only be linked against other GPL code (or code which can be relicensed under an arbitrary license, BSD for instance, but that hardly counts as a real license IMO). I dont see a middle way. If they want to release the code under a license which allows relicensing they might as well license it directly under the GPL themselves, thats NOT a reasonable way of making the QPL compatible.

    Of course the GPL seems to only strictly define derived works where GPL'd code IS modified "You may modify your copy or copies of the Program or any portion of it, thus forming a work based on the Program"... so a layman as me can make the argument you can link anything against an unmodified GPL library because linking is not a form of modification in my book.
  • by waldoj ( 8229 )
    See RFC 1876 [isi.edu]: "A Means for Expressing Location Information in the Domain Name System." Using geographic information to establish a domain, as opposed to vice-versa, seems unnecessary. (At least, *I* can't think of any applications.)
  • Some bugs, like ants, are actually quite tasty (they're kind of like little sourballs). Larger bugs, like locusts, are too gelatinous for my taste when eaten raw, but not so bad if fried.

    Which bugs he eats, and whether they are raw or cooked, alive or dead (live ones can bite back), will make all the difference between penance and fun snack-time.
  • At our last meeting, the idea came up to get our own domain name. Why? So we could attract more members. Tell me, how does having our own domain name -- I suppose that it would be indianriverflyingclub.com -- help us any more than the page we have now at flyflorida.com/irfc?

    I don't know that indianriverflyingclub.com would necessarily be easier for people to remember than flyflorida.com/irfc, but I'll say this about having your own domain name....

    It's much easier (and faster) to tell someone I meet, "Hey, check out my band's website at www.nothinghead.com" than it is to say "Go check out my website at www.geocities/mo/~1012093/nothinghead.html"

    Granted, for me it's a business usage, but the point is still there. If I tell someone about my webpage, 10 days later (if he can remember the band name, nothinghead) he can go check it out. Whereas if I was hosting off of someone else's domain, the chances that that person would forget the address before they got a chance to use it would be much greater.


    -The Reverend
  • QT uses various licenced code from other vendors

    Hello?

  • Or even do what the megacorporations do nowadays to get around political contribution caps: have each employee 'act independently'. So Bob from accounting registers domainnameone.com, Joe from HR registers domainnametwo.com, and so on. That way, they don't even need puppet companies.
  • It is my opinion that very few people type anything into that Location: line in Netscape or IE. They use search engines or click links that are mailed to them by friends. One result of this is that it really doesn't matter what the address/domain looks like as long as the content is there. If you as a web page operator want more hits, refine your metadata tags so that your page moves up the list!
    They actually did a study at some point and found this to be true; I don't remember the source, but they looked at search logs and found that people were hitting Yahoo with the query 'www.hotmail.com' and the like all the time. But at the same time, for slightly higher order users, it can be beneficial for someone to have their own domain. Yeah, a lot of people use search engines, but there will always be people typing 'computers.com' because they want computer info- and Cnet gets their ad revenue and mindshare.

    Another aspect is that in the minds of a lot of people, having your own domain equates to being Internet-saavy. Small businesses that could have their needs met by sitting in a subdirectory on someone else's box register domain names because it looks more profesional. Having worked with some small businesses looking for web hosting, I know that it is one of the first things that they think of. It just presents a more professional looking face, and that image is important for small businesses. As a result, small business web hosting places are helping people register domain names as part of set-up.

    Another factor is memorability. Directory levels tend to be more obscurely named than domain names. I have pictures from school on my website- telling my grandma to look at www.people.fas.harvard.edu/~collier is a lot harder than if I could say "clay.org" or something (it erases the "what's a tilde?" discussion, for instance). This is even more of a boon to small businesses, who want to do anything that they can to stick out in the minds of their customers. Nobody wants to be one of 1,000 angelfire.com or aol addresses that someone writes down or tries to surf through.

    "Sweet creeping zombie Jesus!"

  • Well, eating bugs is theoretically 'his' way of 'punishing' himself. Of course, I'd rather see an industry standard where they just get 10 hard lashes across the nuts for each bug that a user finds. But then again, I don't develop stuff for profit either.
  • Re. traffic lights, wouldn't lt32767.lights.mot.london.uk make infinitely more sense? Are these people (not you; the London bunch) ignorant of DNS hierarchies, or are they simply stupid?

    The world doesn't need new TLDs; it needs new third level domains...

  • by Anonymous Coward
    In Hong Kong there is a saying:
    • a man from Beijing will say anything for money
    • a man from Shenzhen will do anything for money
    • and a man from Hong Kong will eat anything for money.

    So does this job requirement for bug-eating explain all the visas american techno-firms want granted?

  • You simply cannot charge for a GPL'ed program. You can charge for *support*, but if the product's good enough, it shouldn't *need* that support. (Makes you think about the quality of certain Linux distros, eh?)

    I really, REALLY, wish there was a version of the GPL that considered the Commercial wish to be able to charge money. (Which would *require* that redistribution either a) be done with the copyright holder's blessing, or b) only be done with those already with a license.)

    *sigh* But, since that will probably never happen, most of the world will stay with a non-free OS from Redmond.
  • That's what I was thinking... repeat after me... "subdomains" :) But what do I know, I'm just an optics guy.

    Another question - why would traffic lights be wired to the web and have their own URL? And what happens when evil hackers hack them, and start using them to send Morse code across the city? In NYC, traffic might just improve...
  • I've thought about things like that, along with the same idea for email addy's (john.quincy@....), but the downside is, you then have to change email/web address when you move. Yes, you've got to do that with phone & home too, but wouldn't it be nice to have one, unchanging address? Oh well, a guy can dream.
  • i think if we are careful to read the WHOLE sentence there we see what this portion of the EULA is about..

    Except as expressly provided herein, you shall not reproduce, make derivative works of, distribute, rent or lease the Software.

    the "Except as expressly provided herein," is the key phrase.

    'nuff said, no?
  • If Troll Tech wanted to have "GPL with a commercial exception", they could simply license Qt under the GPL and offer a separate commercial license for sale like other companies do.

    You did read this [freshmeat.net] and Matthias Ettrich's comments here [freshmeat.net]?

    Unfortunately, even Matthias Ettrich misses the target in several of his replies (arguing about something different for what James Ramsey wrote and not adressing the real issues).

    As I wrote at the bottom of this article on Advogato [advogato.org], there are a few things to keep in mind when you read the articles and comments posted on Freshmeat:

    • There are no problems if you distribute a GPL'd program using Qt, as long as you only distribute the source code. But the GPL and QPL are incompatible if you distribute a compiled executable, because it would be a derivative work (see the explanation below) and the GPL does not allow the distribution of derivative works unless all parts of the work can be released under the GPL, with some exceptions that are debated in the editorial. For example, according to the exception stated at the end of section 3 of the GPL, it could be possible to distribute KDE binaries if Qt can be considered to be a standard part of the operating system and KDE is not distributed together with Qt (which would be a problem for all Linux distributions).
    • The GPL cannot force you to change the license of other pieces of code and it cannot force you to use the code in some specific way (in fact, it allows you to do almost whatever you want with the code for private purposes), but it can (and does) prevent you from re-destributing the GPL'd code if you do not meet some conditions. One of these conditions is that all parts of a derivative work must be distributed under the GPL (see section 2b, the so-called "viral clause").
    • If you are the author of a piece of code, you are free to distribute it under any license and to change the license (for new versions) at any time. However, this is only possible if you are the only copyright holder. If you have used any code that was contributed by someone else, then all contributors must agree on the new license. This is a problem because some KDE applications (not many, fortunately) have borrowed some code from other applications and it is not easy to get the agreement on the "Qt exception" from all authors and contributors. So although more than 90% of the KDE code could be considered to implicitely have the "Qt exception" because the code was written specifically for KDE, the status of the remaining parts of the code (especially in KDE applications that are not part of the core) should be clarified.
    • Some people say that we need a new version of the GPL without the viral clause, because the current version is too restrictive and the new one would solve the KDE problems. But they fail to understand that some authors of GPL'd code do want this restriction, and chose to release their code under the GPL precisely because of it (this does not necessarily apply to all authors of GPL'd code, but those who are in that category cannot be ignored).

    I recommend that you read Sam Tobin-Hochstadt's diary entry [advogato.org] on Advogato (16 Jul 2000), in which he describes what is a ``derivative work'' according to the copyright law (17 USC Sec. 101 [house.gov]). Since KDE falls in this category, section 2b of the GPL [fsf.org] requires all parts of the derivative work to be published under the terms of the GPL. Parts of Qt (at least the macros and types defined in the Qt header files if you are linking dynamically, or even the whole Qt library if you are linking statically) are included in KDE binaries, and therefore must be re-distributable under the terms of the GPL. This is in conflict with the QPL version 1.0 (used for Qt 2.0), which adds some restrictions that are not compatible with the GPL. Even the QPL version 2.0 (planned for a future release of Qt?) would not solve these problems, as discussed in the Freshmeat editorial.

  • by evanbd ( 210358 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:21PM (#926271)
    How about a TLD for those who would like to put up a personal page? we could have a TLD with fairly simple requirements: Private citizens only (no businesses allowed); you can't be selling anything; one per person. Sound fair?
  • by Emil Brink ( 69213 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @10:24PM (#926272) Homepage
    Hey, that reminds me of something I read in the Jargon File [tuxedo.org]: namely ICBM addresses! [tuxedo.org]. ;^) Feels dangerous...
  • by CSIP ( 31272 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:23PM (#926273) Homepage
    we need a new tld, called .tld - for websites about adding new tld's.
  • I started looking for a domain name for myself and my family

    That's the problem with the domain name system right there: abuse. You don't need a domain name for your family. If you really feel your family absolutely has to have an internet presence, a subdomain or subdirectory (ie. members.aol.com/thejohnsons) should be more than adequate.
  • 800 & 888 to map toll free numbers
    Isn't that just a little bit american centric? Not everywhere in the world uses the same codes for "free phone" numbers. For example, in the UK we have 0800 and 0500, if I remember correctly. And thats just one example.

    Thad

  • Have you been paying attention? Silly person, you don't get a fighting chance. But any chance you do happen to get will likely lead to fighting...

  • by dbarclay10 ( 70443 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:56PM (#926277)
    Good pointing out the possible error about the ThinkNIC's licensing. However, the term "Software"(notice uppercase "S") has been defined at the very beginning of the license. It says that its EULA only applies to software that is not "third party". This means things like Netscape, RealPlayer, and it also specifically mentions software released under the GPL. The license then states that the EULA does not apply in these cases - the Third Part software's own license applies(and said licenses can be views under the "Help" function of Netscape).

    I think we should be vigilant for these sorts of things. I feel better already knowing that the ThinkNIC people acknowledge the GPL(ie: they're not "bad guys").

    Dave
  • Will other registrars such as OpenSRS have the same chance as registering domains as Network Solutions?


    Nathaniel P. Wilkerson
    NPS Internet Solutions, LLC
    www.npsis.com [npsis.com]
  • I haven't received a NIC yet, but it seems like there's a pretty small chance of making a decent and unique OS on this box without making some neat additions to GPL'd software. And there's no mention of the software anywhere EXCEPT the little blurb about how it runs Linux in the FAQ. *shrug* It'd be nice if they had a link to the GPL from the EULA to let you know what was involved, I dunno.
  • I dial 0800-xxx-xxxx and 0808-xxx-xxxx for free phones, the US isnt the only telephone system in the world! I think that the main problem with many of these is its too specific, Joe Public wont know where to look, www.bigbank.com, www.bigbank.co.uk, www.bigbank.atm, www.bigbank.bank, www.bigbank.whatever. Most domains would be snapped up straight away, linking to there .com counterparts. Failing that they'll be registered and the only free ones will be ones that are free on the .com TLD. Companies will just snap up them.whatever, like slashdot ahs slashdot.org and slashdot.com. It doesnt matter what your site is about, TLD's will not be rigidly defined. How can one site (eg slashdot), be a .com (international company) and .org (international non profit organisation)? They seem mutualy exclusive to me. In the UK we ahve a .co.uk, .org.uk and even (I think) .net.uk domains. They are never seen in companies literature, and even the smallest buisness with one bransh will have a .com name. A few years ago, .ltd.uk and .plc.uk came out, I have never seen an address for one of these, and if I hadnt seen them mentioned on a site a few days ago (uk2.net web hosting) I wouldnt even belived they existed! new TLD's are fine, but because of trademarks and the like, they'll just become another joke, nothing new an unique will be there, just links to .com sites, nothing (but registered) or YAFP (yet another portal) There is no way of forcing microsoft.faq to link to anything but www.microsoft.om/faq. If you registed mswindows.faq, and posted answers to "what is a BSOD" and the like, you'd probably get sued. Its the same with .oss/.gnu, microsoft might not have any stie there (even with the strictest domain giving out checks), but they sure as smeg wont let anyone else have a site there! Sure, you could host the root server in iraq or somewhere, but MS (or any other company) would not allow access (and bullyboy ISP's into doing the same) to the server if it was used to have non microsoft sites on www.microsoft.whatever. With trade marks and stuff, new TLD's are pointless and meaningless.
  • Heck, why not decommercialize the .us TLD? :-)
  • Hey, if you're going to pull out the seven syllable words, at least get them right!


    --

  • For an Anonymous Coward, that was a remarkably lucid, thoughtful, well-constructed comment. Are you sure you're not a Responsible Figure?

    Thanks for the quick history of the GNU/Open Source disconnect. I missed that schism as it happened, so I was inferring things from context about ESR and RMS and the other players. I may not agree with 'em - but I respect the work they've done.

  • More domain extensions aren't going to do anything...

    Say I'm Coca Cola. Technically I should be using Coca Cola.com. But am I going to let you use
    coca-Cola.org? I don't think so. Okay so you add
    .per, .web, .shop, .art, .whothehellcares
    Am I going to let you get Coca Cola.foo?
    Let's see.... hmmm NO!

    And then you have the "status" issue, for some reason people think it's cool to have a ".com"
    JohnDoe.com, GreatGhu.com etc. They they certainly aren't companies...

    It think there are only two decent solutions:

    1) squash the namespace, no extensions whatsoever
    2) fragment it differently. Try something like LDAP or SNMP.

    So as Coca Cola I want a lot of people to find me
    so I buy Earth.MegaCorp.CocaCola and pay dearly for it. Joe Blow's radiators is perfectly happy paying a meager $10 and getting:

    Earth.NA.US.CA.SanFrancisco.JoeBlow

    That said...
    Is not the web typically traversed via links from
    pages you visit (and as a subset, search engines?)

    How often does a *lay user* end up typing anything?

    Isn't the norm to look for content, not location?

    You could also then have a new breed of engine
    (similar to yahoo? [blechh]) That allows you to search this fragmented namespace...
  • It might or might not be possible to make money off of shrink-wrapped mass-market software -- like, say, MS Word -- if it was GPLed. I rather suspect you could, at least in the corporate world, where the promise of poor-to-nonexistent technical support from MS seems to appeal to the suits.

    That being said, most programmers are not working for producers of shrink-wrapped software. They are producing custom software for internal and external customers. In most of these cases, they are being paid for addressing a specific need -- in essence, they are being paid for the service of writing the software, not the software itself -- and neither their company nor their customers are in the business of mass-market software sales.

    While much custom software of this sort is of little interest to anyone other than the intended customer, some is of more general use, or could be made more general with a little work. It is also often the case that releasing that software under the GPL poses no competitive threat to the parent company. I've found my employers fairly open to the idea of releasing in-house software under the GPL, and I use a fair number of packages from other programmers that originated in the same way. Odds are, most of you do, too.

    I currently work for a suburban public school district, which is obviously going to be more open to this sort of thing, but the advertising firm I worked at prior to this gig was also hip to the idea -- they looked at it as a form of advertising. I have several projects on the burner that should see the light of day this year under the GPL, and last time I checked, I was getting paid to do my job.

    I realize I'm begging the question here. What anti-GPL types really mean when they say that you can't make money from GPLed software is that you can't get rich from GPLed software. I'm not sure that's actually true -- there are some fairly wealthy people involved in free software these days. But the point that is being missed is that it's very hard to get rich making any kind of software. Depending on your specialization, most programmers make between $30k-$120k/yr. The people getting rich off of closed-source software are mostly venture capitalists.

    The other point that the closed-source crowd likes to ignore is that the whole point of the GPL is helping people and sharing knowledge. That closed-sourcers view profit and altruism as mutually exclusive goals or, more accurately, that they seem to view altruism as unworthy or stupid, tells me all I need to know about the other side of the fence.

  • Are any of the software items covered under EULA derivatives of a GPL type liscence? In that case I think they'd have a hard time enforcing the EULA.
  • we need .cum for all the porn sites.
  • Well, honestly, I think I was pretty damn clear in the submission that I couldn't TELL what the EULA was saying, and since it is legal mumbo-jumbo (even the GPL is at times) that the experts should look at it.

    Sheesh. I don't see a lot of posts attacking ThinkNIC as a knee-jerk; almost everything I have seen has been well thought out and looked at the EULA and the license. So, how about PLEASE reading the posts carefully before you post a knee-jerk flame about non-existant knee-jerk flames?
  • That's not a very good example. What would you like, smith.shop? smith.com? smith.net? AFAICS, the *only* decent TLD for a personal site would be a geographic one, e.g. smith.toronto.on.ca. Yes, there still might be some demand for it, but not enough that people will be squatting on it (most likely). First come first serve works well for that.

    That said, as the population (both on the Internet and in the Real World) increases, seemingly odd or unique conflicts may come up. There's the eToys thing, etc. For the time being, these conflicts are pretty far between, but I suppose it would be useful to anticipate the future where squatting will become a lot more prevelant and annoying.
  • Programmers don't make money.
    Some of us are just lucky enough to get paid to write programs.
    If you want to make money you have to sell something.
  • Ralph Nader has some suggestions about reserving domain names. Create new TLDs like .customer, .protest and .sucks, where it would be forbidden for the company referenced in the domain name to register it. See Nando Times article [nandotimes.com]

  • If you read the original story [slashdot.org], you'll see several posts from Ambrosia employees stating [ambrosiasw.com] that the idea came from the Marketing guy himself.

    As for the marketing stunt, what else could a marketing director do about bugs? The programmers can fix them, but marketing can only apologize for them. I guess this is a strange way of doing just that.
  • Hey, if you're going to pull out the dictionary, at least learn to count syllables!

  • Some good thoughts from you and JCMay (who replied to you). I see your point about "vanity" domain names. And I've only considered this seriously for the past few days, but here's why I want one:

    1) easier to keep in touch with friends/family. lastname.tld is easier to remember than (which is easier to remember than fischer_dj.tripod.com [tripod.com], so my friends will know that they can always contact me by checking the web http://lastname.tld, or emailing first@lastname.tld (and I just just update the dns reg to push the URL and mail stuff to my current addy) If we lose track of each other for a while, I move states, go overseas, etc., they can find email address@lastname.tld and the listserv thingy will auto reply with my current mailing address & phone number. I'm thinking here of maintaining the address for the next 30-50 years.

    2) can provide the same service for my entire family, and they can have the same benefit (sister1@lastname.tld, mom@lastname.tld, etc.)

    3) My dad is starting a "cottage-industry" business. I can then create a distinct email, like accounting@lastname.tld

    4) At some point I may resume my consulting work, and then I could have consulting@lastname.tld, and the web page http://consulting.lastname.tld. Yes, I should have all those biz addresses be unique .com's, but it's cheaper, and simpler to manage if I just use subdomains of my uber-dn

  • So, who here knows how to go about getting to the head of the line for the new domains? How does the average consumer give himself a fighting chance of getting a good domain name early in the process?

    tune

  • by HeghmoH ( 13204 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @06:04PM (#926296) Homepage Journal
    Forbidding duplicates is silly, though. There are many instances where it makes a lot of sense, when done properly. For example. www.bungie.com points to Bungie Software's main page (well, it was down last I saw, but it SHOULD). www.bungie.net is the homepage for Bungie's online gaming thing. www.bungie.org is an independent bigass group of fan pages. Each one fits well, too. The problem is when company X buys up companyx.org and companyx.net just because.
  • It sounds like you're describing "popular" domains, not "good" domains. If you pick a name that accurately describes what it's hosting, then it will undoubtedly be both good and unpopular. Problem solved.
  • by AME ( 49105 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @06:08PM (#926298) Homepage
    That "pisses you off"? I shudder to imagine your reaction when asked if you want your drink sized medium or large when only two sizes are available. Does it make you go buggy? Do your eyes bug out?

    Don't let it bug you. They have counselling for stuff like this. Get over it. "A disease-causing microorganism" is an informal but accepted meaning of "bug" in each of my dictionaries, even those dating back to early in the century.

    --

  • The guys over at Ambrosia Software kept their word Yuck well that is what happens when you keep promises that you can not keep

  • The QPL is still in contradiction to the principles that the GPL was written to uphold, which includes the freedom to use the software for internal purposes.


    Is that entirely true though? The GPL uses the term 'distribution' which is a grey area. IANAL but, it would seem to me that many people could twist the word distribution up and down.

    It's my understanding that a corporation 'distributing' to their workers would probably not be called distribution because it's inside one giant entity, but does the same apply if you give a piece of internal GPL software to, for example, a temporary worker who is not an entity of the company? I'd like to see it shown, not implied, what the exact standing of that is.

    Matt
  • by aonifer ( 64619 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @06:21PM (#926301)
    You simply cannot charge for a GPL'ed program. Sure you can. You just have to make the source code available. From the preamble:
    For example, if you distribute copies of such a program, whether gratis or for a fee, you must give the recipients all the rights that you have. You must make sure that they, too, receive or can get the source code. And you must show them these terms so they know their rights.
    Market forces may make it impossible to sell the software (though Cheapbytes doesn't seem to have a problem doing so), but for all the GPL cares, you could force a buyer to sacrifice a goat to the Sun god.
  • in the UK we have 0800 and 0500, if I remember correctly

    Thats changed now (As another poster pointed out.) We now have 0800 and 0808 for Freephone numbers. The 08xx numbers also cover Local and National rate numbers under the new system.

    Disclaimer: I work for BT. Sorry ;)
  • I reckon DNS is getting overloaded. We should keep it for what its good at - i.e. having a logical name for an IP address. This means that stuff like HTML can survive physical network changes potentially unscathed.

    What we need is a better framework for searching that encompasses as many of the ways that people would like to slice the DNS space as possible. This would hopefully mean that the DNS hierachy's secondary job (of providing the name that a user types in to get going) would become less important.

    Its never going to stop marketing types wanting well known URLs. But it would mean that user A who wants a DNS cut up by Geographic region could do that in the search framework, and user B who wants it cut up by industry area could do that too.

    I'm expect that there are efforts in this direction, and that if I knew my RFCs better I could point to some.

  • My question is, what kind of bugs will they be eating?

    Beetles? Worms? If not, then what?
  • Rather than over-react as I'm sure is the propensity of many members of the Slashdot community, this is my response. I just sent this letter to them. Thinking like a businessperson, I decided to hit them in the wallet, where it is most likely to matter. Anyway, this is what I wrote.

    To whom it may concern;
    I had recently been considering purchasing several of your devices for the (department name removed) in the (college removed) at the (university name removed). I have the position of network administrator within this department and am responsible for recommending purchases of both hardware and software.

    While reviewing information about your product, I came across this very disconcerting clause in your EULA:
    2. Software License and Restrictions. Subject to the terms and conditions of this Agreement, Company grants to you a limited, non-exclusive, perpetual, royalty-free non-transferable license to use the Software solely in connection with your use of the NIC. Except as expressly provided herein, you shall not reproduce, make derivative works of, distribute, rent or lease the Software. You shall not reverse engineer, decompile, disassemble or otherwise attempt to discover the source code of the Software. You agree to indemnify and hold Company harmless from and against all liabilities, losses, damages, costs and expenses, including attorneys' fees, which Company may incur or otherwise suffer as a result of your breach of any of the provisions or restrictions of this Agreement.

    I am also aware that you advertise you product as using the Linux Operating System (built on the 2.2 series kernel). As you are probably aware, the Linux OS is covered under the GNU General Public License (GPL). The clause in your EULA may be in direct violation of the GPL, and I am writing to ask for your clarification on this matter.

    Your rapid response is greatly appreciated. Thank you.

    (closing of the letter)

    So there you go, hopefully a better model to follow. Take care.

    -J
  • Those who can't do tech support either do it anyway or call tech support (or perhaps manage or market)...?
  • by jjr ( 6873 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:05PM (#926307) Homepage
    In anything RMS is a man who believes in his cause and doesn't back down from a fight. I can aleast respect him for that. I don't always agree with everything says and does but I know he is a man of prinicple.
  • It's also possible that the license terms in question have to do with the onboard firmware which boots up Linux from the CD. Speaking of which, I wonder if the BIOS is flashable...
  • As a follow-up to my earlier post, here's the response I recieved from NIC's customer support... The typos (including the GLP ones) are their's, not mine.

    Contents of the letter follow:

    These restrictions do NOT apply to the GLP code, but to the software created by NIC and by third parties and licensed to NIC.

    I hope this clarifies the issue to your satisfaction. We are strong proponents of the GLP paradigm and have worked closely with our attorneys to ensure our compliance.

    Please let us know if you have additional concerns and thank you for your interest.

    (end of email)

    So it looks quite clear. Hope this clarifies the questions. Cheers.

    -J
  • You have the freedome to create music, or art or whatever

    Certainly true.

    and sell it if you want.

    This does not follow. In order to sell one must have property and title. For sale without either is called fraud. The assumption that authorship of a whatever gives you property is the flaw that currently curses us in Western society.

    Everything else follows from this assumption. Consider a world in which authorship does not give property but rather a right to prevent others from claiming authorship. In the English legal tradition, and yes the Americans follow this tradition (even the continentals are influenced here (thank you industrial revolution)), there were Torts at law, to protect the rights of which I speak, the counterside is to protect ones property by preventing others from claiming that a given work was authored by someone when it was not, this wrong, called passing off, would stop someone from writing a song and calling it a Metallica track.

    There are a number of standard replies to this point of view, most of them effectively rebutted in the GNU Manifesto, those that are not specifically rebutted there can be rebutted. Just think about it harder. In particular, don't think about it in terms of how our world would have to change to get to that place but just imagine such a place and how it might work.

    The proof is all around, but just think about how people like Mozart and Beethoven made a living.

    I do not have the freedom to deny them that right. that's where a lot of people don't 'get it.'

    Why right are you denying? The right to sell something that they do not own? That is in itself wrong.

    Ok, so one is not persuaded that authorship does not give property. I can accept that, it is a tough ask, but if we can leave the persuasion unitl another day, can it be agreed that if authorship does not give property then the author has nothing to sell and so the whole "stealing" of the fruits of intellect (note the active avoidance of the term Intellectual Property) is a moot point?

    As for the persuasion, well it's a long road, starting with the roots of what we, in the Western tradition, call property, in the writings of English lawyer philosophers such as Blackstone, Hobbes and Locke and progesses through the Industrial revolution up until today. And you don't even need to touch alternative paradigms such as Marxism or the like.

  • Slashdot.org would actually be s.l.a.s.h.d.o.t.o.r.g which the user could still type as slashdot.org or slash.dot.org or slahsdotorg, they'd all be equivalent once broken down into single letter domains.

    The DNS servers will correct typos too?
  • "According to a report on EFnet, the ICANN executive board is scheduled to make a ruling on the proposed new top-level domain names."

    I never thought I'd live to see *truthful* news coming from EFNet. :-)

  • by orpheus ( 14534 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @04:26PM (#926315)
    While I'm as amused by the notion of revenge against the much hated market-droids who afflict our industry (with grudging acknowledgement to the fact that in contemporary society marketing seems to be necessary), the page cited in the Ambrosia quickie made me feel I was being played like a elephant's nose-flute.

    I'd wager good odds that marketdroid Jason Whong either came up with the idea himself, or agreed enthusiastically when it was proposed at some undoubtedly well-lubricated strategy session -- and I bet the results warm the cockles of his marketdroid... er, whatever Marketdroids use instead of a heart.

    I'd feel better about the 'penance' if Ambrosia listed all their known bugs, and the roadmap for correcting them. Instead, I found very little on this subject on their website - a few FAQs on undesirable behaviors (mostly justifying them or describing them as unavoidable, rather than offering workarounds or plans for patches)

    Absent that kind of open acknowledgement of the specific problems, it's just a clorful ploy, that has nothing to do with delivering bug-free product
  • It looks like they've updated the EULA :-) Trust me, the clarification about the software wasn't there when I started to order a NIC. Lemme see if I can pull a copy off the drive or out of squid or whatnot.

    I'm glad the info is in there now!
  • As the QPL stands, and the fact that Qt is licensed under the QPL, one can see in the QPL that permission for linking *is* given, under conditions. I *strongly* agree with RMS on this; the authors of KDE/other GPL'ed Qt-based software have clearly intended to link against QPL software and therefor waive rights to certain freedoms granted under the GPL (specifically, the right to charge for the act of distribution of binaries/source.)

    However, although IANAL, I also see how this logic can be used to completely invalidate Debian's argument. After all, the code in question (code used from other GPLed projects) is, in fact, GPLed. This code is being put into GPLed software. I see the fact that the derived code being placed under stricter licensing conditions as being a moot point. In granting freedoms to the programmer, the GPL also takes away certain freedoms, such as protecting one's source as vigorously as a closed-source project would be.

    So, in short, the original authors gave *implied* permission for their code to be used in other projects. While I realize that this argument could be made (weakly) for including source in closed-source projects, please keep in mind that the derived code is still GPLed.
  • This is actually an interesting idea.

    First problem that springs to mind is that you've just ballooned the root domain.

    Second problem that comes up is that there are a number of stock exchanges around the world, and there's nothing to keep two completely different companies from having the same symbol on two different exchanges. You could address this by making the various stock exchanges TLDs... you would have "*.csco.nasdaq", "*.t.nyse", etc. (Doing this would solve the first problem as well.)

  • Perhaps mix this with your geographic area.

    This wouldn't be a good idea for businesses (I have no idea where the main office of my bank is, or musician's friend, or T$R inc.) but would be ideal for home users.

    Imagine, for instance, http://john.quincy.public.poncacity.ok.us.nom. It's long to type, but with 6 million people (even though 99% wouldn't have their own homepage for a long time) it's going to be long to type anyway.

    With the advent of broadband to the masses, this could be a possible option with your ISP. Imagine if a domain name _came_ with your account. Most people don't change ISP's unless they move, so ownership wouldn't be that big of a hassle for the most part (knowing ISP's these days, they'd probably want ownership). It would be an addon option to have it point to your machine (with IPv6, static IP's should be cheaper hopefully).

    Now, this probably isn't going to be how it happens (it's too good for companies to let the customer have it... seems that all the good stuff gets in the way of some company that has the power to keep it from us) but it's a nice thought.
  • Usually, for a personal homepage, you don't want anonymity. It defeats the purpose. A homepage is just a "here I am, here's some stuff I like/do" page.

    Why would you want anonymity when you're showing off?
    ---
    Zardoz has spoken!

  • Is it "entirely true"? I don't know. There may be loopholes. But I have advocated open source software at several corporations and talked to a number of corporate lawyers, and ambiguity of the term "distribution" did not come up as a serious concern when they reviewed the GPL.

    I also can't tell you definitively what RMS's beliefs are, but he has repeatedly stated that the right not to distribute anything at all is important.

    And I'd say that, if not for philosophical reasons, it's important for practical reasons. Many research and development projects that ultimately become open source start off as internal projects. Having some obligation to publish is often not acceptable even in environments committed to open source. That means that the QPL isn't applicable, and it means that, for practical purposes, Qt is an expensive commercial toolkit to such organizations.

  • Perhaps this article makes a little more sense if you realise that the original "free" QT lisence was only free for non-profit organizations. So it is a little ironic for the Troll Tech guys to say that GPL does not allow people to make charge for software.

  • by Ephro ( 90347 ) <ephlind@yahoo.com> on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:12PM (#926338)
    Look at some of the ideas presented, such as SRI International [icann.com] who wants to:

    minutes.degrees.tendegrees.geo. The exact form of the naming convention will be available as a simple downloadable XML schema from the top level .geo domain. No other names are anticipated beyond a few administrative domains.

    For example, consider a server with DNS name 10e20n.geo. Since it is a server at the second level of the hierarchy (tendegrees.geo), it is responsible for a 10 degree x 10 degree "cell" of the world. The service area of the cell spans from longitude 10 degrees East and latitude 20 degrees North to longitude 20 degrees East and latitude 30 degrees North.


    Or VRx [icann.com] who wants .faq so any answer for blah can be found at blah.faq, 800 & 888 to map toll free numbers (which seems odd to me, you dial 1-800-555-5555 and goto 555-5555.800?) These are just a few of their ideas.

    Diebold Incorporated [icann.com] wants .atm for Automatic Teller Machines, which seems like at least one thing you are going to have to goto physically to make much use of it.

    And one of my favorites is .SUX [icann.com] which is set up by Jerky Networking, not so much for the name, but that Jerky is wanting it, anyone else remember the Jerky Boys?

  • by Otter ( 3800 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:41PM (#926340) Journal
    Here's a post [debian.org] on a Debian mailing list in which RMS offers his view on linking apps to Qt. Basically he supports the view that GPL'd code like KDE, which is designed to link against a non-GPL should be considered to implicitly have permission to do so - and thus dosn't require any license modifications.

    Now, there is still the issue of GPL'd code from outside sources, but this obviously removes 99% of the problem. So is Debian reconsidering, now that RMS has addressed their primary objection? Not really, as discussed in this kde-licensing thread [kde.org].
  • by (void*) ( 113680 ) on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:42PM (#926341)
    People will you all please read the license carefully before going on that knee-jerk GPL flame?

    2. Software License and Restrictions. Subject to the terms and conditions of this Agreement, Company grants to you a limited, non-exclusive, perpetual, royalty-free non-transferable license to use the Software solely in connection with your use of the NIC.
    Except as expressly provided herein, you shall not reproduce, make derivative works of, distribute, rent or lease the Software. You shall not reverse engineer, decompile, disassemble or otherwise attempt to discover the source code of the Software. You agree to indemnify and hold Company harmless from and against all liabilities, losses, damages, costs and expenses, including attorneys' fees, which Company may incur or otherwise suffer as a result of your breach of any of the provisions or restrictions of this Agreement.

    Please note the phrase in bold. This means that there is no other way you can distribute the source, other than that permission given by the GPL.

    This is exactly the same paragraph 4 of the GPL [gnu.org]. Does it make this phrase redundant - maybe. IANAL.

  • Well, my point was kind of different. Trolls are a Norwegian company and copyright issues would be resolved in Oslo City Court. European copyright laws are different from American (I don't really know how)

    Well, as a matter of fact I live in Europe, not in the US. The copyright laws are not really different. All countries that have signed the Berne copyright convention have implemented the same basic rules in their national laws. I do not think that Norway is different in that respect. For more informations about copyrights, you could have a look at:

    The last page contains lots of links to useful documents, including several copyright FAQs.

    [...] and Trolls do not think that the "viral clause" would be effective in Norwegian court.

    Now, this is another matter. It is not related to the copyright laws, but to the interpretation of the GPL. I have seen several statements by TrollTech employees saying that, in their opinion, "neither the GPL nor the LGPL legally protect libraries." However, you have to pay attention to the wording of these statements and what exactly is meant by "protect" in that context.

    The GPL does protect the libraries in that it does not allow someone to distribute a compiled version of the library itself without the sources. It also prevents the distribution of a compiled program that links with this library, unless the sources are made available.

    However, the GPL does not prevent the distribution of the sources of a program (or another library) that is under a restrictive license and links with the GPL'd or LGPL'd library. For example, I could release the sources of a program under a license that forbids non-commerical use (ha!) and tell the user to compile and link with the GPL'd library. The GPL does nothing against that, because it does not restrict the usage of the GPL'd code, only its distribution or modification. It this case, it would only be possible to distribute the sources or the program (separately from the library), but not the compiled code.

    Also, the GPL allows you to use the code freely for your personal use (even for commercial purposes) as long as you do not re-distribute the code (compiled or not).

    In his editorial, Eirik Eng says: "If the GPL effectively protected a GPLed library from being used to develop proprietary software, we would allow relicensing Qt under the GPL." As explained above, the GPL effectively prevents the distribution of binary-only programs linked with the library, because the compiled program is considered to be a derivative work as soon as it uses some code (macros, typedefs, ...) from the header files of the library. However, it does not prevent the distribution of source-only programs, and it does not prevent the development of proprietary software using the library as long as the software is not distributed.

    Contrary to the GPL, the QPL does not allow the latter, and I think that this puts an unnecessary restriction on the usage of the software. Let's suppose that I am the owner of a small shop and I want to develop my own virtual cash register on my PC using Qt. Well, according to the QPL I would have to get a commercial license if I use this little application in my shop, because that would be a "commercial use". Depending on your point of view, you can consider this as a good or a bad feature of the QPL compared to the GPL.

    So they cannot release Qt with GPL as an alternative license because they are afraid that it might ruin their business model, because anyone could then use Qt Free Edition in any project, proprietary or not

    Well, of course TrollTech has to earn money somehow. But I do not think that the GPL would ruin their business model. With the GPL, anybody who distributes a program built on top of the library would have to release the sources as well (under the GPL or a compatible license). If by "proprietary" you mean "without sources" or "with a restrictive license, then no, the GPL would not allow that.

  • Off-the-cuff reation to the proposed TLD's? Some of them are good, and others are very, very stupid. Allow me to harp on the stupid ones (isn't ".web" redundant???)...

    The ones I consider "stupid" are the ones that are far too specific. As just an example, ".gallery", ".humanrights", ".isnotgreen" (?!??!??) are a few of the ones I consider detrimental. Not because they're over 3 letters - that I can get around - but because I believe that such TLD's will make navigating the web even harder thna it is today.

    Right now, if you want to find out something about rental cars, or soft drinks, or even home appliances, you can guess, and probably guess correctly, about budget.com, coca-cola.com, and maytag.com. There might be variations, but it's usually limited to the domain name, not the TLD (it might be budgetrental.com instead).

    Now you go and open up a new TLD for everything and anything you desire:

    www.drteeth.dds
    bejing.china.humanrights
    carseats.recalls.info
    london.england.uk.tel
    proctorandgamble.isnotgreen (can you say lawsuit?)
    japan.maritime.law

    All of a sudden, you have no idea what is where anymore. Search engines become necessary to find *anything* that isn't a .com. And with web content already having doubled this year, search engines have to scramble to keep up.

    Additionally, this might create a situation where someone who wants a domain name for a web site might be forced into registering multiple domain names just for one site. If www.oldusedcars.biz has photos of all the clunkers they're selling, do they need www.oldusedcars.gallery? Do they put all prices at www.oldusedcars.prices? Admittedly, this is a poor example, but with a large corporation with lots of information to distribute, I can see a case where they would register everything under the sun, just in the hope that people guessing their URLs will get one right! (So much for bringing the price of URL registration down.)
  • Zeck wrote:
    That's the problem with the domain name system right there: abuse. You don't need a domain name for your family. If you really feel your family absolutely has to have an internet presence, a subdomain or subdirectory (ie. members.aol.com/thejohnsons) should be more than adequate.
    This is just what I've been thinking. I am a member of the Indian River Flying Club [flyflorida.com] (our page is way out of date), for which a local business owner was gracious enough to give us some space on his web server for our page.

    At our last meeting, the idea came up to get our own domain name. Why? So we could attract more members. Tell me, how does having our own domain name -- I suppose that it would be indianriverflyingclub.com -- help us any more than the page we have now at flyflorida.com/irfc?

    I would say not at all. Our page is registered with major search engines-- I know Google has it. Perhaps if we want more exposure, we should add more metadata to our page, not move it to a new, and arguably more obscure, domain name.

    It is my opinion that very few people type anything into that Location: line in Netscape or IE. They use search engines or click links that are mailed to them by friends. One result of this is that it really doesn't matter what the address/domain looks like as long as the content is there. If you as a web page operator want more hits, refine your metadata tags so that your page moves up the list!

    For examle, I just did a Google search for "flying club melbourne florida" and got a lot of links for R/C airplanes and an ultralight school. Not us. I did another search for "flying club valkaria florida" and we were the very first link. If we want more visibility, perhaps we should update our metadata such that the first search returns us as well-- more people know where Melbourne is than Valkaria, even though they're only ten miles apart!

    In conclusion: don't bother with speciall, vanity domain names! Just make sure that the metadata tags in your pages cause your page to be returned by the searches you predict people will use!

    Jeff

  • Yet again the HTML formatting catches me out!!!

    I dial 0800-xxx-xxxx and 0808-xxx-xxxx for free phones, the US isnt the only telephone system in the world!

    I think that the main problem with many of these is its too specific, Joe Public wont know where to look, www.bigbank.com, www.bigbank.co.uk, www.bigbank.atm, www.bigbank.bank, www.bigbank.whatever.

    Most domains would be snapped up straight away, linking to there .com counterparts. Failing that they'll be registered and the only free ones will be ones that are free on the .com TLD.

    Companies will just snap up them.whatever, like slashdot ahs slashdot.org and slashdot.com.

    It doesnt matter what your site is about, TLD's will not be rigidly defined. How can one site (eg slashdot), be a .com (international company) and .org (international non profit organisation)?

    They seem mutualy exclusive to me.

    In the UK we ahve a .co.uk, .org.uk and even (I think) .net.uk domains. They are never seen in companies literature, and even the smallest buisness with one bransh will have a .com name.

    A few years ago, .ltd.uk and .plc.uk came out, I have never seen an address for one of these, and if I hadnt seen them mentioned on a site a few days ago (uk2.net web hosting) I wouldnt even belived they existed!

    new TLD's are fine, but because of trademarks and the like, they'll just become another joke, nothing new an unique will be there, just links to .com sites, nothing (but registered) or YAFP (yet another portal)

    There is no way of forcing microsoft.faq to link to anything but www.microsoft.om/faq. If you registed mswindows.faq, and posted answers to "what is a BSOD" and the like, you'd probably get sued.

    Its the same with .oss/.gnu, microsoft might not have any stie there (even with the strictest domain giving out checks), but they sure as smeg wont let anyone else have a site there! Sure, you could host the root server in iraq or somewhere, but MS (or any other company) would not allow access (and bullyboy ISP's into doing the same) to the server if it was used to have non microsoft sites on www.microsoft.whatever.

    With trade marks and stuff, new TLD's are pointless and meaningless.
  • I wanna know how the NIC can do 65,536 million colors (shouldn't that be 65.536 billion colors?)

    Or what the hell an X Window 3.6 is.

  • Until I started looking for a domain name for myself and my family (for personal, and perhaps professional uses) I paid little heed to all the tld business. However, now that I've seen first hand that all the lastname.com, .org, .net are taken, as well as the other problems (Networks Solns "holding" expired dn's) covered, I've become very interested in the whole deal, as well as the gTLD propositions. After reading through a several of the propositions, I've got a few comments and questions:

    #7 .law - proposed with a view towards pro-bono work, and serving people with severe financial problems. Personally, I'm glad to see at least one with a degree of compassion behind it.

    #6 .web - "Dot WEB Registry Pte Ltd is a for-profit Singapore corporation ... As we have already been taking pre-registrations for .WEB for 3 years since 1997, we own the rights to the .WEB(Tm) name and the TLD itself is a registered service mark under Singapore laws. We currently have over 1 Million pre-registration domains in our data base." - translation, we've got monopoly on this, and now we want to make some big bucks. Perhaps they should have a chat with the .law folks :)

    #3 - .sys - Basically, they want a simple way to register/create dn's en masse. An example given is for a VPN controlling the traffic lights in London (England). Thus, they want to reserve every URL from londoncitytrafficlight00000.tld to londoncitytrafficlight99999.tld, and register a few as well for use. The idea is every traffic light has a machine with a unique dn. This tld would be limited to those who have registered > 100 names so far.

    My question: Does that last one make any sense? I'm not buzzword compliant, so I don't know what a VPN is, nor why you would want 100,000 dn's to control a city's traffic lights. Seems inefficient to me, and sure-fire way to bog down DNS servers around the world (once every major city goes this route).

    David F.

  • Absolutely. I nominate .ego as the TLD for personal websites. (inspired by Azraelle [azraelle.com])
  • The QPL is still seriously restricted for commercial entities (from the QPL FAQ [trolltech.com] on Troll Tech's site):

    11.Using the Free Edition, can I write software for internal use in my company/organization?

    The Qt Free Edition is not intended for such use; it is our policy that when you are using Qt for free, you should in return contribute to the free software community. If you cannot do that, you must get Professional Edition licenses instead.

    The QPL is still in contradiction to the principles that the GPL was written to uphold, which includes the freedom to use the software for internal purposes. Furthermore, I think the QPL is not suitable for most internal research and developmen use; you must license the commercial version. Be sure you understand exactly what the QPL and Troll Tech require you to do before you invest any time or effort in Qt.

    If Troll Tech wanted to have "GPL with a commercial exception", they could simply license Qt under the GPL and offer a separate commercial license for sale like other companies do.

  • SUre this looks like a troll--but I know too many people who do hold views like this--and so I feel the need to respond.

    One of the downsides of living in a 'free' (as in speech) society, is that people have the 'freedom' to commit crimes. This is not a problem with the system--not a flaw. This is simply a misunderstanding by those who commit the crimes.

    You see, you have all the rights you wish to excersise within a free society up to and including the moment you begin to excersice freedoms which interfear with another's rights. That's where your freedom stops. (sure there are lots of examples of our government curtailing this kind of freedom--but I'm not a libertarian, and I agree with most of those--and with the above principle)

    You have the freedome to create music, or art or whatever, and sell it if you want. You also have the freedom to give it away. I don't have the freedom of stealing it either way. When Metallica sells their music there is an implied license, and like the GPL, that needs to be enforced. I can't copy their music electronicly, because they have the freedom to tell me not to, and have done so.

    I do not have the freedom to deny them that right. that's where a lot of people don't 'get it.'

  • let me say that Mr. Whong is indeed insane enough to come up with such an idea completely of his own volition and free will. It's not his style to engage in some outrageous and shameless act of publicity just because of some programming from higher ups. He already comes pre-programmed to do such things, and is one of the most "differently thinking" individuals I have ever met.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 17, 2000 @03:15PM (#926361)
    Since 1984, RMS has been working on writing software for, and promoting the GNU project. A project to provide software which is not only royalty free (free like beer), but that allows the user to modify, pass on and generally screw up said software (free like speech).

    The GNU project has always had the aim of replacing UNIX with a workalike system (it could be argued that this is the aim of emacs alone). By the early 1990s GNU was providing a complete set of development and user tools to run on top of many commercial operating system. The only part missing was the kernel.

    GNU have been working on their own UNIX like kernel. Built on top of the Mach Microkernel, HURD aims to compete with the most advanced and modern operating system kernels to date. However, development (which of course had to be done using entirely GNU tools) has been slow and even now HURD is not ready for any sort of production system.

    In the early 1990s Linus Torvalds, appeared from nowhere with a working rewrite of the Minix kernel written under the GPL, Linux. The Linux kernel is heavily based on tried and tested designs, old technology. However, it works, is fast and incredibly reliable. This was the spark on the arms dump that was GNU. Suddenly there was available a completely free operating system with all source code and a range of user and development tools.

    In media terms it appeared overnight. One minute there is a bunch of obscure hackers writing compilers for UNIX, an OS that had not even been heard of by most computer users. The next, there are a few distributions of "Linux", providing the kernel alongside sets of GNU tools.

    Linux took off, picked up by many students wanting to get their hands dirty with something that they could work on and learn about it was propelled into teaching institutions, ISPs and the hands of even more hackers. By 1998, Linux was being touted as "the last best hope" against Microsoft just as the Apple Macintosh had been before they went into their long dark period of flaming Powerbooks and buggy Finders.

    Linus Torvalds will not be remembered in history as an innovator, he will be remembered as in implementor. As his discussions on Minix with Andy Tanenbaum show, Linus wasn't concerned with new technology, taking advantage of powerful hardware or dealing with the problems of tomorrow. He seized the opportunity to apply textbook principles and build an OS kernel using 60s concepts. Linus should not be hailed as a great hero, who boldy coded where no man had done before. The reason that Linux is now so good is the work of thousands stabilising and improving the system. Linus should, rightly, be congratulated for sitting down and doing a dirty job that nobody in operating systems wanted anything to do with, writing a working system using old technology.

    Next came the ugly bits. Industry wasn't interested in an operating system written by "hackers" thrown together from whatever was available. They refused to provide device drivers for Linux, mainly because they were concerned that they might give away trade secrets by providing free source code under the GPL. Throughout the 2.0, 2.1 and 2.2 kernels, Linux changed constantly. Providing binary only drivers for it became impossible (was this on purpose). Companies had no choice but to provide code that could be compiled against the a kernel of choice. This meant opening up precious source code.

    Source code was released under a variety of licenses. There was GPL code, BSD code, XFree86 code, Apache code, Artisticly licensed code and all sort of other weird things. The only common factor was that each provided source code and allowed users to at least distribute untampered versions of source code and binaries.

    So, in an effort to tidy up the situation, the "Open Source Movement" began. Fronted by ESR and Bruce Perens it brought together all code fitting a common denominator of source code availability and freedom of copying under the banner, "Open Source". Initially, opensource.org claimed to, and did, act as a marketing campaign for the GNU project. It generated amazing amounts of publicity.

    However, when opensource.org started to class software such as QT under the same banner as GCC and other GNU software, RMS took issue. He denounced open source as not being purely free software and distanced himself from the movement.

    Open source is the power hungry brat child of GNU. Concerned with short term publicity and gain, they abandoned the principles that have given GNU such a strong foundation. After RMS split from opensource, there were various other internal squabblings, most visibly over the use of the trademark "Open Source". Next came the talks at Microsoft from ESR and the killing he made by being on the board of VA Linux. In the space of a few months he managed to suddenly move from the editor of the Hacker's Dictionary and hacker icon, to sold out betrayor of GNU in the eyes of many.

    In a sense, ESR not only distanced himself from the hacker ideal. But showed software developers and marketeerers just what potential for cash-in existed in open source software. Since then, it seems, open source has been the latest and greatest buzzword. Everyone (even Microsoft) has either released open source software or talked about it. Suddenly, there is a vast amount of code available to normal users.

    RMS argues that it is wrong to call the "Linux distributions" "Linux". Instead he favours GNU/Linux, to show that the system is comprised of both GNU tools and the Linux kernel. This will probably never happen as the term "Linux" is so well established in the media now (when HURD comes along, things may be very different though). A much better name for most of today's Linux distributions would be opensource/Linux. For example, Mandrake comprises binary only versions of software such as netscape while providing open-source software with restrictive licenses such as QT. The only distribution which could realistically be called GNU/Linux is Debian (but only if they finally ditch non-free).

    Recently there was a Slashdot interview with RMS where questions were submitted by users. The story carried a health warning. RMS is accused by many of being a zealot who wants to see all programmers starve. He is not.

    RMS provides a much needed figurehead for the FSF. A group devoted to providing and fighting for free software. Much like Marx, Machiavelli or Neitsche everything he says should be taken with a pinch of salt for life in the real world. But without these people, without the purist ideals they promote we would be stuck in a realistic world of pragmatists ready to sell out at the first opportunity, hardly role models.

APL is a write-only language. I can write programs in APL, but I can't read any of them. -- Roy Keir

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