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Re: [gNewSense-users] [Off Topic] Will you be getting Microsoft Vista?

From: Yavor Doganov
Subject: Re: [gNewSense-users] [Off Topic] Will you be getting Microsoft Vista?
Date: Wed, 31 Jan 2007 08:15:49 +0200
User-agent: Wanderlust/2.15.5 (Almost Unreal) SEMI/1.14.6 (Maruoka) FLIM/1.14.8 (Shij┼Ź) APEL/10.6 Emacs/22.0.93 (i486-pc-linux-gnu) MULE/5.0 (SAKAKI)

Dave Crossland wrote:
> However, the "hosted" in "hosted webapp" is important. I can barely
> keep up with how to do residential class systems and network
> administration, because my job is not in the sysad business.
> Administering a webapp is far far outside the ken of most users.

This is a valid concern.  Local GUGs and in general any groups of
users can organize to solve this problem by running a server and
sharing the costs between themselves.  Friends can give accounts to
their friends and to the friends of their friends.

> That webapps are non-free is a relatively recent concept for me, as
> the software is not running on my computer.

So you wouldn't mind running Opera on X exported display?  What
computer the software is running on, and by which protocol the user is
interacting with it is a technical detail for me.

> The Allegro clause in GPLv3 is only an option, though. So its unclear
> to me how to consider webapps.

You mean the "Affero" clause, I guess.  AFAIK FSF doesn't have a firm
opinion about this issue, because of the "freedom to choose not to
disclose the changes you make".  I think that the public must prevail
so I cannot justify the action of one entity exercising this freedom
and harming hundreds (millions) of users.

Do note that FSF supports and uses Savane, which was specifically
launched to solve the problem with the SourceForge webapp software,
when it became non-free.  Also, the "Search" at is powered
by htdig, not Google.

> Search engines, eBay, Amazon, Lulu, and so on - all are webapps whose
> functionality can't be replicated by locally installed software. What
> *can* we do?

First, the problem must be recognized and the community has to fight
to solve it.  Savane and GForge are escape from non-free software with
that particular functionality and there are websites that host
projects using them --,,, and others -- and yet, many free software developers
choose to register their new projects at or other sites that
use non-free software.

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