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Re: [gNewSense-users] Re: free is not sufficient

From: Anthony Patarini
Subject: Re: [gNewSense-users] Re: free is not sufficient
Date: Tue, 14 Nov 2006 17:49:14 -0900
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20060922)

So, what is being proposed is that all Free Software that makes it trivial for a user to use non-free software be removed? I don't think that's a good idea at all. The issue with Firefox is that, by default, it links to non-free extensions maybe available by the Mozilla website itself (From Firefox clicking Tools -> Extensions -> Get More Extensions takes you to this page.) However, it would still be trivial to install non-free extensions by visiting the Mozilla website. The problem is of course that non-free software is being offered and suggested by the program itself. To my knowledge, WINE does not do this. And there are many good Free Software programs that are Windows-only at this point in time. Until recently my favorite FTP program, Filezilla, was only available on Windows, so I had to run Wine in order to make use of it. I was still using 100% Free Software, though, so I see no problem in this. Making it more difficult to use these programs makes no sense to me. Ndiswrapper is a bit more troublesome, in that most of its purpose is to run non-free drivers. However, there are Free Software drivers for ndiswrapper, and the idea that you could write a Free driver that works on both Windows and GNU/Linux intrigues me and reminds me of the wonderful technical benefits of Free Software, less important as they may be. Ndiswrapper itself does not suggest to users where they can acquire non-free drivers. It's a compatibility layer, plain and simple, just like WINE. They are both freedom agnostic - they don't restrict what you can run, they just run it. Just like Mono, which can run Free and non-Free software. Just like Python, my programming language of choice, can run free and non-free code.

The issue at hand, unless I'm mistaken, is that included software/documentation/etc. should not advocate or suggest the use of non-free components. That's admirable. But to remove a component simply because it is capable of running non-free code seems self-defeating and even, on some levels, opposite the nature and intention of Free Software in the first place.

If anyone feels I've missed something, please enlighten me.

rek2GNU/Linux wrote:
now that you clear it up I agree, maybe you are right, we should stick to have a distro for
Free Software activist/advocates/like minded..... you name it..

Chris Fernandez.

Jorge Rodríquez wrote:
rek2GNU/Linux escribió:
first of all let me explain that I am from Spain, living in Boston so my English is rusty and I talk in spanish like 90% of the day since lot of people talk Spanish here in Boston :-)
now with that out of the way:

I have to agree with you that we should let the user choose to be a "slave" or not, as long the software we provide is Free Software we have nothing to worry about, hmm is like a security tool, you can use it in many ways, to us to package it and give it with the distribution cause is free software wont mean that someone is going to use it for evil doing.. and even if they do is their choice.. hope I get my point out. now if this package was not free then.. of course is not going into the system, wine case is free software so I vote that we indeed should include it also Samba. Samba sometimes is usefull in many ways and that don't means people is *only* going to use it to connect to non-free systems.. some people like to use samba between GNU/Linux systems and others.

Chris Fernandez

I have to agree with you that we should let the user choose to be a "slave" or not

according to I see it, the question is much easy.

People have the freedom to use windows, mac, ubuntu… nobody has the
obligation to use gns. But gns is not for "slaves", is for free mans.
That wine is not in the repositories does not prevent a user to obtain
it by other means. To include wine in the repositories signify to think
that the users of gns might to need a “windows emulator”.

Whitch is the target user of gsn? the normal user of “linux” will not
use gns.
The philosophy of gns is radical, is not “open source”, is for radical
users (like I)

We do not remain by halves, is my opinion.

Sorry for my bad English.

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