Netscape GPL'ing importance for linux, free software movement (hard to overstate)

Netscape GPL'ing importance for linux, free software movement (hard to overstate)

Post by James M. Carte » Sat, 24 Jan 1998 04:00:00




> [FYI: this site includes information about Netscape Communicator 5.0 and later
> being GPL'ed!]

> http://www.veryComputer.com/

> This is VERY great news!  I can now use navigator and not feel like I am
> violating my GPL-oriented beliefs.

WOW!!  This is trememdous almost beyond belief.
Some will say I am overstating, but I think this is the most important
development of the year that I can think of.

1. Browser w/ JVM is making claim for new base computing platform.  
   Having one of the two leading browsers being available to any OS (
   linux esp.) is very helpful in allowing it to not fall behind any
commercial OSs.

2. Netscape and their developments will aide FSC (free software
community),
   and vice-versa.   Welcome netscape!

3. This REALLY cuts at MSs momentum with IE marketshare, whose devotion
   to trying to own technical standards (over public ones) is well known
   and anti-competitive.  Netscape will increase it's power in
influencing
   evolving standards/developments which now will be GPL'd in source!
ANNNND
   will be developed in tandem with netscape!

4. Shows their faith in the power of unleashing the creative energy of
the market.
   I cannot believe the linux devel model was not an influence in this
yes, (BOLD) move.

5. Anything the cuts into MS's market/industry power is very positive.

6. Whether a decision of terribly desperate or enlightened men, people
may argue.
   In this day and age, I still think it is a huge defiance of
convensional
   corporate wisdom to open up source code.  The success of this (or
not) will
   have a big influence on others (pro or con) towards embracing the
principles of FSC.

It IS a VERY BOLD move, a show of faith (and endor*t) in the free
software
development model and the GPL in particular, and some well-needed
opposition to
the MS juggernaut's tenticles of increasing power.

When your livelihood/business is software, giving it away is the boldest
move of all!
I am so proud of Netscape, Stallman, Torvalds, FSC, ...

James M. Carter
using linux/perl for a living
Cincinnati, Ohio

Quote:> It just leaves getting cbb working well enough to replace Quicken and every
> piece of software that I use will be freely licensed!  I am a happy camper.
> :-)

> This development will also save MUCH work for those working on GPL'ed
> browsers.

> I always hoped that Netscape, Inc. would remember it's roots someday.

 
 
 

Netscape GPL'ing importance for linux, free software movement (hard to overstate)

Post by Mark Jackso » Wed, 28 Jan 1998 04:00:00


: 6. Whether a decision of terribly desperate or enlightened men, people
: may argue.
:    In this day and age, I still think it is a huge defiance of
: convensional
:    corporate wisdom to open up source code.  The success of this (or
: not) will
:    have a big influence on others (pro or con) towards embracing the
: principles of FSC.

This is the center of the issue.  A lot of people will be watching
the events to come very closely!

But it's really a natural evolution.  Software is information, and
information is free on the Internet.  Source code is a bonus in many
ways except the trust issue.  Getting the source code is better in my
mind than getting a binary with a VeriSign certificate.

Which brings up another point.  How will the freeware browser be able
to guarantee the integrity of an https:// transfer?  Since anyone will
be able to make their own certificate and have the browser recognize
it!  (If you don't know how to make your own cert, do some browsing -
it's out there, for free)

Anyway, it will be very interesting to see what happens...

 
 
 

1. GPL'ing Solaris won't save SUN

Schwartz said that SUN is working on GPL'ing Solaris.  Unfortunatly, that is
a big mistake.  Solaris, when GPL'ed will have the same marketshare as one
of those *BSDs.

The reasons a GPL'ed Solaris would fail are the following:

1. Solaris lacks drivers that would enable it to run on the vast hardware
that is in the x86 world.

2. IBM would never get behind a GPL'ed Solaris.  Linux has the feature that
you can run it on ANY hardware and run all your favorite apps!  You write
your app on a PC and then when it is a hit move it to some big iron.  If you
have to re-write your GPL'ed Solaris app to run it on a pSeries, why just
not write that app in Linux where you have IBM's 100% comitment?

3.  A GPL'ed Solaris would have a lack of independant developers because it
is very unrewarding to write software for a niche OS.  Linux has the
mindshare.  Look how few BSD developers there are compared to Linux.

4. Linux has the mindshare of the vast majority of *nix users.  Sure, there
will be Solaris users that will use a GPL'ed Solaris, but it will be a niche
market.

 SUN would be better off leaving Solaris closed sourced and rebranding it so
the Linux fanatics would embrace it.  If you GPL Solaris, the Linux fanatics
think you are competing with them, and they will spread FUD against Solaris.

If you make Solaris linux friendly by rebranding it to something like
"SolarisLX", signifying its linux affinity, Linux fanatics will embrace
Solaris.  But SUN will also have to do what IBM did and make Linux run on
EVERY SUN box.  That way, users get the "write once, run on any machine"
that they get when they use Linux (with the notable exception that linux
doesn't run on upper-end SUN boxes).

2. Unix - Frequently Asked Questions (2/7) [Frequent posting]

3. Has the free software movement become a cult?

4. Preorder Sharp Zaurus PDA from Amazon.com!

5. Articles in SunExpert about the free software movement

6. APC Back-UPS 500 USB

7. the free software movement has lost its soul

8. Embedded

9. The free software movement needs to get away from Unix

10. Open Source movement vs Free Software

11. Microsoft using giveaway strategy to undercut the free software movement -- NYTIMES.com

12. Using GPL'd Linux drivers with non-GPL, binary-only kernel