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[Discuss] OSS licenses (was Home NAS redux)

> From: jabr at [mailto:jabr at] On Behalf Of John
> Abreau
> You've repeatedly said that GPL is "less free". 

Uhmmm....  Yes, but ...

>  You've argued that the GPL
> "should" do things that it doesn't do,

Disagree.  See below.

> > Should the FSF feel compelled to go sue GitHub?
> > if you distribute laptops or servers that have a mixture of pre-installed GPL
> and non-GPL binaries, that is also a violation.
> >?Mixing GPL and non-GPL binaries inside a VM is a violation of the GPL. ?(If
> you distribute the VM.)
> > Dell and HP selling laptops with ubuntu pre-installed? ...
> > Now how about if I store something in Amazon S3. ...

The whole conversation started when Mark said the CDDL is bad and GPL is good.  The big difference between the CDDL and GPL is whether or not source with different licenses may be combined into a single binary, "derivative work," or "larger work," and whether or not the same license must apply to the derivative work or larger work.  

When I said those things above, I am not stating the GPL or anything *should* do those things.  I am saying the GPL presently does (or could be construed to do) those things, and in my opinion, shouldn't.  I am pointing out how ridiculous it is to emphatically claim that it's "wrong" or "theft" to combine different-licensed software into a single binary, file, archive, package, media, or computer.  I'm asserting that every argument used in favor of one of these boundaries also applies to the other boundaries.

We normally consider the boundaries of the derivative or larger work to be file boundaries.  The whole idea of static linking versus dynamic linking.  Defining the interface between two chunks of code.  I've made the point that file boundaries and media and machine boundaries are equal to one another.  If Mark or someone wants to assert that it's "wrong" or "theft" to combine different licensed source code into a single binary file, then the argument extends to zip, iso, self-extracting zip exe, bin, and vmdk / vdi files, and consequently, extends to individual computers, servers, hard drives, optical media, etc.

I am saying the difference between CDDL and GPL is neither greatly important, nor something that Mark or anyone should be up in arms over.  Taking extremist attitudes.

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