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Journal tomhudson's Journal: Still think Stallman is not past his "best before" date? 50

No class whatsoever.

06 October 2011 (Steve Jobs)

Steve Jobs, the pioneer of the computer as a jail made cool, designed to sever fools from their freedom, has died.

As Chicago Mayor Harold Washington said of the corrupt former Mayor Daley, "I'm not glad he's dead, but I'm glad he's gone." Nobody deserves to have to die - not Jobs, not Mr. Bill, not even people guilty of bigger evils than theirs. But we all deserve the end of Jobs' malign influence on people's computing.

Unfortunately, that influence continues despite his absence. We can only hope his successors, as they attempt to carry on his legacy, will be less effective.

Richard Stallman - the Mel Gibson / Fred Phelps / insensitive clod of the software world.

This discussion has been archived.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

Still think Stallman is not past his "best before" date?

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  • I understand being respectful/tactful if someone I know personally dies. But with a public figure like Jobs, I don't mind people being straightforward like in RMS's statement.
    • RMS wa basically altering the truth when he compared Steve Jobs to, in his own words, the corrupt former Chicago Mayor Daly [].

      "I said to him very emphatically and very definitely that an order be issued by him immediately to shoot to kill any arsonist or anyone with a Molotov cocktail in his hand, because they're potential murderers, and to shoot to maim or cripple anyone looting."
      Later that month, Daley asserted "There wasn't any shoot-to-kill order. That was a fabrication."

      Apple doesn't go around

      • unlike jails, people choose to buy Apple products. In Stallman's world, that's not a valid choice. Why? Because it's not completely open. So what? This is up to the individual to decide - it's not like they can run his piece of crap HURD. Every choice makes trade-offs, and the GPL is no less of a jail. So, what is Steve Jobs' crime? That he led Apple to bring out products that people actually want?

        Apple's (and arguably Android's) success at controlling the distribution of software are steps toward more closed environments. Just like Facebook's success takes us nearer to the end of the "wild west" age of the Internet.

        Sure, no one is going to take away your free devices nor prevent you from having a proper self-hosted website/communicating through email and IRC. However, if people become content with doing everything through closed services provided by a handful of companies, then you have no choice b

  • The fact is, that the "1984" campaign was a propaganda ruse. Jobs and Hertzfeld and crew were already working with DARPA and the spooks.

    Read all of the following - including the links - and understand that it is no exaggeration to understand that with the introduction of "Siri", George Orwell's "Telescreen" is on the verge of reality - in your pocket. []

    • ^^^ This. Apple's App Store is the very definition of conformity and fascism.
      • ^^^ This. Apple's *everything* is the very definition of conformity and fascism. All done up in C'mon Get Happy Day-Glo colours. Fits my definition of Evil Genius pretty well.

        Barb, honey, you've been drinking Kool-Aid from the wrong pitcher. Or you've just brilliantly trolled us. Please tell me it's the latter.

      • ^^^ This. Apple's App Store is the very definition of conformity and fascism.

        How is it the definition of fascism? People are free to not use it if they don't want to, just as developers are free to not develop for it. What next - calling Ford fascist because they don't sell or support GM or Fiat engines and transmissions? The Apple App Store is part and parcel of the iPhone and iPad - don't like the policies, go buy something else. Next you'll be complaining that linux is fascist because it doesn't su

        • As for conformity, it's absolutely NOT the case, since everyone else is trying to copy Apple, and not the other way around.

          ... except if your App doesn't meet the moving target guidelines of Apple's human interface guidelines, your app is rejected by Apple. If you code something in a manner that Apple doesn't like, your app is rejected.

          Compare that to Droid - if my app has a wonky UI, I might only sell 25 copies instead of 25000 copies. Or, if I release an app with a revolutionary UI, it might catch fi
          • ... and Apple has the right to decide what to publish or not publish in their own store, same as brick-and-mortar stores. And to change the specs as time goes on, same as brick-and-mortar stores.

            Just because you operate a store doesn't mean you're obliged to give space to every product out there. That is not "enforcing conformity" in the pejorative sense, but in the "these are the types of products we want to carry in our store" sense. Were the App Store to be a monopoly, you might have different basis

    • by gmhowell ( 26755 )

      Read this yesterday. It's still a bunch of tinfoil haberdashery.

  • We have seen a huge number of people and media outlets (particularly those posing as "news" channels) dedicating hour after hour to worshipping Steve Jobs. Then the opposing end of the spectrum is this guy saying he's glad Jobs is gone.

    Personally, I'm solidly "meh" on the matter. Though from everything I've read I am apparently the only person on the entire face of the earth who is feeling that way...
    • Big impact == big media coverage. There's no doubt Jobs has had a huge impact on both technology and society in general. The media cover what people are interested in. Apple knows how to make stuff that leaves much of the competition eating dirt. If anything, that should inspire people to do better (the competition of the free market), not say that they're glad he's not around any more.

      Stallman comes off as a petty wanker (makes sense, his first name is "Dick") who's "talking p*ss" because he's jealou

      • There's no doubt Jobs has had a huge impact on both technology and society in general.

        I doubt it. I actually doubt it quite a bit. He changed some products, but people act as if their savior was just thrown into an active volcano by a UFO. I can't think of a single Apple product that has had a huge impact on me; my favorite Apple product (as I mentioned in a JE recently) is CUPS. I learned how to type first on a manual typewriter, and then on a C64. While the first spreadsheet I used was on a Mac LC, there was nothing magical about it that could not have been done on a PC, and a PC cou

      • Stallman comes off as a petty wanker (makes sense, his first name is "Dick") who's "talking p*ss" because he's jealous.

        Okay, now you're painting Stallman as someone who wants the same things that Jobs did, which is demonstrably false. One of the most common troll errors is ascribing your own motives to your opponent, and we both know you're smarter than this, right? Right.

        Whew. You really had me going there for a while. Nice job.

        • No, I'm not implying that Jobs and Stallman wanted the same thing. What I'm pointing out is how Stallman comes off - the appearance he gives with his latest petty, low, mean, nasty, ill-conceived brain turdle ... it's the sort of poo-flinging jealous people do while others are coming to terms with a loss. He's no better than Fred Phelps of Westboro Baptist Church in that (lack of) respect.

          Anyone with ANY class would not be writing such crap the day after someone died, with few exceptions. Hitler or bin

    • I'd prefer to be "meh" but everybody keeps talking about Jobs as though he walked on water, thereby pissing me off royally.

      • The man had plenty of faults - like denying he was the parent of one of his kids - and he got a lot of design things wrong. The difference is that he learned from his mistakes. In other words, unlike Stallman, he matured.

        It's true that the Steve Jobs that took over the leadership of Apple the second time around was a very different Steve Jobs, but that was what was needed, or Apple would have gone broke, and Microsoft's dominance of the consumer space would have gone unchallenged.

        Apple had no choice

  • I'm personally one of the people who is greatly hurt by the passing of Steve Jobs. He was a visionary person, and brought a lot of change to this world of computers we are in.

    However, RMS is a different animal, and he holds to a different belief system. To him, the most important thing is that software be free (as in speech). All other things are petty valueless aberrations of what really matters. From his worldview, Steve Jobs was a detractor, and under his value system the only thing that matters (that so

    • I don't use Apple products, use Windows mostly for printing and compatibility testing, my day-to-day computing needs are met by linux, so you'd think I would be a natural to agree with Stallman. And yet, I don't - I can recognize the value of what Jobs continued to do to the end, the way he challenged us, and can see that the world is poorer without him. I miss him more than I thought I would.

      I simply don't see Stallman's position as being justifiable. There's both room for, and a justifiable need of,

    • by gmhowell ( 26755 )

      Like Barbie said, RMS is a dick. (A dick with a toe cheese fetish, BTW). He may have different beliefs, but his comments and comparisons go beyond mere hyperbole. We aren't talking a Hitler or Stalin who killed millions, a Bush or bin Ladin who killed thousands, or even a Mark David Chapman who killed one. Jobs' vision of computing, for 30 years, has helped push the industry and bring it to more people than would 30 generations of RMS. What good is a 'free' system that is unusable?

      Fuck RMS and his GNU Turd.

      • For doubters of the "foot cheese thing", video of Stallman picking stuff off his foot and eating it [] - see around the 1:55 mark.

        If you ever get a chance to shake his hand, you might want to pass.

      • And there is the argument that torture would allow us to more quickly extract information from detainees. That does not make it the moral choice to compromise on this one guy, because "this case is special".

        RE the "foot cheese thing", and this goes to Barbie as well... totally baseless ad hominem, all geniuses are eccentric. Look at Knuth and you'll understand that. Getting all riled up because someone has a disgusting habit? And what? You don't?

        • What RMS did was a nasty hatchet job, nothing more, nothing less. It's part and parcel of his own self-marketing efforts, which he uses with both his own "personal brand" and with the FSF. It's why he condoned the FSF FUD against linux and android 2 months ago. It's why he makes baseless claims about things like back doors in osx. It's why he kept on offending women at conferences []. It's juvenile attention-seeking behaviour, since he hasn't done anything remotely relevant since before the turn of the cen

          • As per the foot cheese thing, it's not "totally baseless" - watch the video. Seeing is believing.

            It's totally baseless because it is an irrelevant part of the person making the argument. Who gives a fuck if he eats his own toe cheese, I don't care if it's true, it has nothing to do with the worth, quality or truth of his statements.

            You would openly growl at anyone if they brought up that you're a woman when arguing with your positions, so why would you do the same thing to someone else? (i.e. bring up something totally irrelevant just because it makes the person look bad)

            • by gmhowell ( 26755 )

              I brought it up because it shows what an out of touch nutter he is. I do plenty of gross stuff is well, but generally not while on stage in front of a crowd of people.

            • In one sense you're right, but in the greater sense - the "if we want to get our message across then first impressions count", it does matter.

              How does this apply to Stallman? Simple - if he were serious about getting the message across as being more important than satisfying his own immediate urges, he would not turn people off by eating stuff he picks out of his hair, his nose, or between his toes, while trying to argue the merits of F/LOSS.

              He's free to do all those things, but they most certainly de

              • That church anecdote reads like it could have been written by Penn Teller as well. Sometimes you have to be offensive and in people's face to get your point across, because if you're just a sniveling passive appeaser then no one is going to listen to you.

                • Sometimes you have to be offensive and in people's face to get your point across, because if you're just a sniveling passive appeaser then no one is going to listen to you.

                  Like everything else, there's a time and a place. Unless the person was Hitler or bin Laden, p*ssing on the grave of someone you did not know personally before they're even in it just to get attention is simply not done.

                  Dick Stallman got his point across about as effectively as Fred Phelps. In other words, nada. In both cases, THEY

                  • It's funny how much you manage to miss the point so often... it's frustrating because I can't just slap you and tell you that you're wrong. You're kind of right, but your own zealotry is blinding you to quite apparent details that you have to be simply blind not to recognize.

                    Stallman doesn't give a shit about people's opinions, and that's because he places no stock in their feelings. His goal is singular and pure: Free Software that is going to be Free for as long as possible. So that I can't steal from a F

                    • Stallman has gone on record [] as saying that illegally sharing proprietary code is better than not sharing it.

                      When your friend says "that's a nice program, could I have a copy?" At that moment, you will have to choose between two evils. One evil is: give your friend a copy and violate the licence of the program. The other evil is: deny your friend a copy and comply with the licence of the program.

                      Once you are in that situation, you should choose the lesser evil. The lesser evil is to give your friend a cop

                    • His right to demonstrate ends where other people's right to peaceable assembly begins. He's free to preach among his own followers. He's not free to get in my face,

                      Oh that's just the Canadian talking. You're free to wear ear plugs. If the light is too bright, you're free to pull down the shades. When it comes to verbal abuse, the decibel level is the only thing that matters.

        • by gmhowell ( 26755 )

          Okay, so buying closed software isn't murder or genocide, it's merely torture?

    • You can agree with the callousness of his timing?

      • You can agree with the callousness of his timing?

        Oh yeah, it was totally callous and rude. That doesn't meant that I don't think that his philosophy is wrong or evil. For some people, telling them that they're happy that Hitler was dead would have been callous and rude in timing. That doesn't make those people wrong.

        I can see and understand the viewpoint that Steve Jobs stood as an icon for "abusing" free software to produce proprietary software. (Darwin is/was F/OSS and is the brains behind OSX, but the GUI and the heart and soul that was OSX, the stuff

        • I just want to take a moment to correct a common misconception. RMS did not create the idea of free software. For years, the source code for the software for computers came with the hardware, on big bulky tape drives. The idea was that customers could modify it themselves, fix bugs, etc. It was part of the value of any system purchase.

          People would swap tapes back and forth. The official position was that they weren't supposed to, but it was mostly wink-wink-nudge-nudge.

          Much later, I was giving the


            I said that he was a primary actor in bring Free Software to be what it is today. Prometheus didn't create fire, but he still gave it to mankind.

            Jesus, you're like a crazy person who talks over everyone else, because you're not listening.

            • Your original claim was that he gave you open source, and wtf did we give you ...

              It was other coders, who individually decided to make their code open, who did, long before RMS. Remember, open source was the norm until the change in the copyright act in 1976. It was so much the norm that there wasn't even a special term needed for it.

              The first significant chunk in the "we want to close it off" era was BSD-licensed, and BSD code is in everything (unlike GPL code, which cannot be used in many scenarios

              • Your original claim was that he gave you open source, and wtf did we give you ...

                Again, Prometheus did not invent fire, but he still gave us fire. You don't have to be the original architect of something to be the chief proponent that gets it out to people.

                So realistically, isn't it fair to say that Bill Joy and Linus Torvalds have more to do with giving you free software?

                I'm sorry, but there's this compiler out there, that Linus Torvalds used to build linux... you know, a bunch of free software that was already in place before Linus even started his kernel... god, who was it that developed those tools?

                it was going to happen no matter what, once there was a critical mass of programmers out there. It's like how you'll have the same invention crop up at the same time by several different inventors - when the circumstances are right for an idea, it's invention is inevitable.

                Right, so by your whole argument here, we shouldn't revere Thomas Edison either. I mean, he wasn't th

                • The GCC compiler is really the EGCS compiler. The GCC compiler was abandoned long ago, because Stallman couldn't get people to contribute to it any more. He then took the EGCS compiler and said it would be the new GCC compiler.

                  You're also free to compile the linux kernel with other compilers, such as Intel - they have modified source that works with their compiler - but if you DO use the intel compiler, be ready for a BIG increase in speed. Eventually, everyone is going to be using LLVM [] instead, for th

  • The whole world's talking!

    Steve Jobs is dead
    Long live Steve Jobs!

    About 155,000 other people died on the same day...

    • ... and if one of them had been the highly visible head of the most valuable company in the world, the media would have paid them some attention as well.

      The fact is that the media paid more attention is because Jobs has been (rightly) identified in peoples' minds with advancing the tech that they use on a day-to-day basis.

      • What do you value most?

        • What do you value most?

          That's easy - my 2 daughters. But what does that have to do with the current discussion?

          • Well, I kinda think the discussion is a bit silly, as if you're looking for something to be upset about.. or it was a slow troll day, or maybe I'm detecting a bit of envy? There's probably more than a few people who would be upset if Stallman wasn't offending people. This way he's striking the happy medium.

            And then I read your sig.. It's all good.

  • by Tet ( 2721 ) *
    Sorry, but I not only think Stallman was completely right here, but I don't think anything he said could be construed as anything other than respectful. Lacking class? No, I just don't see it.

If you had better tools, you could more effectively demonstrate your total incompetence.