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Submission + - Tizen SDK Licensing Locks-in the Whole OS (

An anonymous reader writes: Interesting analysis have been posted to the Linux Foundation's forum:

Tizen mobile OS SDK is not Open Source what makes the whole Tizen not Open Source and below is explanation why. Any ideas how fix that would be welcome.

Details: Open source doesn't just mean access to the source code. The distribution terms of open-source software must comply with certain criteria.

Criteria #1 "Free Redistribution" of the Open Source Definition is not met by Tizen SDK's License because it says:

2.1 Subject to the terms and conditions of this Agreement, Samsung hereby grants to You a royalty-free, non-exclusive, non-transferable and worldwide license to use for the sole purpose of the development of Tizen Applications.

Criteria #3 "Derived Works" and #4 "Integrity of The Author's Source Code" are violated as well. The source is closed so derived works are impossible as well as integrity cannot be preserved.

For example from here:

You may not use any component part of the Tizen SDK in any way independent from the Tizen SDK. You shall not (i) modify, reverse engineer or disassemble any portion of the Tizen SDK; (ii) lease, rent, copy, redistribute or sublicense theTizen SDK to third party;

Criteria #6 "No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor" is clearly violated too.

The author claims there may be other reasons such as the use of non-open source Flora License. So the project is organized in a way and evolves against the Open Source principles; while the SDK is a key component for developing Tizen applications and they cannot be developed without the SDK at the moment, availability of the SDK can be discontinued in any time. He proposes to stop any 3rd-party Open Source activities related to Tizen until the Linux Foundation takes over the ownership of Tizen SDK.

Comment Bada-Tizen migration tool silently released (Score 1) 1

Thanks for reading. For those needing more, here's unannounced Bada->Tizen migration tool already for you for downloading: So developers are encouraged to go and port your apps. How big is the legion of bada developers? As of February 2013, has 5695 apps. But it's just painful that most of them are wallpapers or themes. Interesting, there's still no single mention of bada on Is that because bada is not (yet) a web standard or defined standard at all? Or is that merge waiting for approval by Linux Foundation? Come on Zemlin, Sammy pays $500k a year for having your stamp.

Submission + - Tizen not as Open Source, drops EFL to merge with Bada 1

DustyMutant writes: Due to lack of a public roadmap and basic schedule it was uncertain for fans of Tizen whether Bada featurephone operating system takes center stage for Samsung's Tizen as the popular rumors say. With the final 2.0 release important milestone of the merge has been finalized. Bada's "Open Services Platform" frameworks (APIs and implementation) have been merged into Tizen, thus forming a hybrid of HTML5 runtime environment and Bada advanced featurephone application layer, all siting on top of Linux Kernel and system libraries. What worries is that it happened silently without prior discussion or at least announcement what may be unexpected because Tizen is promoted as a project under umbrella and maintenance of the Linux Foundation, employer of Linus Torvalds.

Visiting Tizen 2 and Bada 2 platform web documentation is enough to notice that Tizen 2 native developer experience evolved into what was known as the Bada advanced featurephone OS. For a quick comparison, a simple screenshot has been published.

Moreover Enlightenment Foundation Libraries (EFL) developers have been advertising strong Samsung's support for years. Now this support has been basically dropped in the middle of the changes that form Tizen 2.0.

Is there a chance for Tizen to become a real Linux operating system we all know, capable of running existing free software, not just HTML pages and Bada apps? There is IF the community takes over areas where Linux Foundation is passive. While there is no official support for these third-party frameworks, according to the explanation on the Tizen SDK page:

Tizen applications for mobile devices can be developed without relying on an official Tizen IDE as long as the application complies with Tizen packaging rules.

Still, is this declaration enough to gain trust in the community? Just before the release, Carsten Haitzler aka rasterman, Samsung's Principal Engineer working on Tizen and EFL guru in one person, showed some signs of irritation (an excerpt from an Tizen IRC log, original typos corrected):

tizen is not meego or maemo, it is not related
i've been working on this os now for like over 4 years
i have spent years saying "release ports to existing products"
no action, years saying what you say, i don't bother anymore
what will happen — will happen
i have no chance to change it because at least [in] samsung all decisions are top-down
ie. some executive with zero connection/knowledge of OSS is going to decide all the technical details
as i mentioned tizen is SLP [Samsung Linux Platform], SLP is a continuation of Limo
Limo is something that existed alongside and/or before maemo did
it has been in competition internally, no ball was picked up, it's a separate ball
it was renamed to tizen and put under a [Linux Foundation] banner and Intel then joined in
Intel has pushed for things to be much more open and to use OBS [Open Build System] and much infra that was used before for meego
tizen uses enlightenment and efl, thus why its then "zero porting" :)
that doesn't mean you will be able to use efl in apps you port/write
i do this for my own amusement, YOU may be stuck with a phone that is locked down and that doesn't allow installation of native apps at all

Shortly after that rasterman shared his look at the openess of the Linux Foundation-backed project in more depth to fight some misinformation:

Tizen, and what is in it (technically), is controlled by/decided on by the TSG [Technical Steering Group]. The TSG is a committee of executives (Samsung and Intel — you can read up on it — Imad and JD). They decide what will happen, and that's how it works. It's a top-down thing with VP's in charge. How and what they decide is up to them entirely. I have no idea what they will decide, when or where. Well officially I don't. What I may, or may not know is simply rumour and not for me to disclose, as decisions are made by the executives in charge (as above) as they see fit (which is not here in public, like on these mailing lists, IRC etc.). This (Tizen) is not like open source projects (let's say like E/EFL, Qt, GTK+, Xorg, Linux Kernel etc.), where I, or any developer, is free to talk about plans for the future and work being done, (or for that matter even knows or can find out). I understand that you are coming from that perspective, and thus logically asking those questions here, expecting answers like you would with pretty much any OSS project, but Tizen is not like that.

On the day of the release once the secret has been disclosed, rasterman concluded the reason for frustration on the Tizen IRC channel to the fellow engineers:

jooncheol Open Services Platform !!!
jooncheol bada !!
jooncheol hmm
jooncheol bada ...
jooncheol omg
Stskeeps looks like a good compromise, EFL on the inside, OSP on outside
raster hehe
* Stskeeps envisions raster being taken away in a white straightjacket to the funnyfarm
raster they did that years ago
raster i then escaped
raster and wrote a wm
raster and trust me
raster its not efl on the inside
raster efl is nothing mroe than a glorified wrapper around windows and then a simple surface compositor
Stskeeps sorry to hear that
raster everything else above that is not efl
raster so u may want to reserve judgment until u've seen it all

In addition to governance and technical aspects it becomes clear that Tizen's licensing model looks complicated at the moment. Tizen is presented as an open source and standards-based operating system with popular media praising its openness when compared to Android. However Tizen's SDK contains a mix of open and closed components released together under a non-open-source Samsung's licence.

What's typical in open projects driven by corporations, a number of components internally developed by Samsung such as calendar, task manager or music player are however released under the Flora License which is most likely incompatible with requirements of the Open Source Initiative. Next releases will hopefully resolve the issues to avoid irrelevance.

Operating Systems

Submission + - Tizen drops EFL for HTML5 ( 1

DustyMutant writes: According to one of Tizen's architects Carsten "Rasterman" Haitzler talking to user richrboo on the official project's IRC channel, there will be no option for native development in Tizen nor support for native apps in the application store. Rasterman is also co-author and benevolent dictator of the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries (EFL), customized by Samsung for the needs of its Linux platform that gave birth to Tizen in 2011. Tizen OS 1.0 is scheduled for the first quarter of 2012.

While Samsung never announced its roles in Tizen officially (or maybe because of that) Rasterman as Samsung's employee has been informally acting and the spokesperson or community manager for the project within the developer circles. Over a year ago he shared breaking news for open source enthusiasts: "Samsung is putting real resources behind EFL and using it to make a production-ready OS. The OS not only is Linux based, It uses all the other infrastructure from Linux [..] It is also going to be Open Source (GPL, LGPL etc.) and with Opensource upstream gaining contributions back from Samsung."

But last week Carsten admitted that he has already given up pushing EFL as the native GUI framework within Tizen and he does not care about that anymore. "I don't hear anything except 'the future is html5'. [..] So go make webapps and be happy as that is obviously the one and only true future. Go talk to the 'technical steering committee'." — he said apparently embittered.

This is second similar move in Tizen's history after notable removal of the Qt libraries and tools before reusing some other components from MeeGo late 2011. The move has polarized the communities and probably boosted creation of alternative projects such as Mer and Nemo. After the change EFL would be only used internally by some "system" applications like the system's web browser for the GUI. It was not disclosed how the OS will handle natively-running games that are not based on HTML5.

For open-source backers the project's reality is getting bitter every month. Tizen's upstream contributions are largely disputable because git history for the open source packages have never been published. And the fact that the SDK fueling Tizen is closed-source does not help to win more souls. It is not clear if the statement about merge of Tizen with the closed-source bada OS that hit the news in January was just a gossip. Now the state of Samsung's EFL contributions is uncertain. So if this is all true and Tizen goes full steam with Web-only approach, because of fundamental (not just technical) differences, it is hard to consider the project as a continuation of the MeeGo platform, contrary to what the sponsored Linux Foundation declares. But even more practical question can be: why is Tizen any better than other Web-based initiatives?

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