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From Stefano Mazzocchi <>
Subject Re: Infozone
Date Fri, 09 Jun 2000 10:42:26 GMT
burtonator wrote:

> > Thanks, but these OSS thoughts are globally shared by all ASF members
> > and they are nothing I invented.
> Yes.  But there is a different story here.  There is no public statement
> on why GPL code is considered "bad".  We need a public opinion to spawn
> more discussion.

I would like this to be clear: I don't consider the GPL "bad" by itself.
I consider it dangerous for many things.

GNU concentrates on code, Apache concentrates on credits. This is why
the majority of open source is GPL while the most successful (in terms
of market share) is BSD.
> In certain situations the GPL can be decent.  

In certain situations the GPL is perfect, not only decent. Just like a
total GPL-ed software world would stop code production (because the
profit margins are so thin you can't build a company on that), a totally
BSD-ed world would generate an oligarchy of OSS "brands" trying to steal
users from one community to another.

Open source dynamics are very hard to forecast, but I'm sure it's main
strenght is the differences inside the visions that make it a colorful
place to live.

> I certainly don't think this applies to the Java/Server-side world.

I disagree. It's nothing about java or server side. If I were only, I would be afraid of using BSD-style licenses
because of small companies stealing my stuff. BSD works very well when
you have a name. "Berkeley" for example... or "Apache".

I have this interesting parallel: GPL is like creating a "final" class:
people cannot extend it without modifying it. In my life, I created only
one final method: 

   public final void;

in JServ's threadpool. Why? because I didn't want people to extend it
since all the thread handling facility was there and people could very
easily mess up (it took me months to debug it under all possible

A GPL-styled program would declare final all methods. A BSD-styled
program would start with

  out.println("Part of this software was created by " + AUTHOR);

and leave all methods not-final.

Very different visions, but both are useful in some circumstances.

Stefano Mazzocchi      One must still have chaos in oneself to be
                          able to give birth to a dancing star.
<>                             Friedrich Nietzsche
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