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From "Andrew C. Oliver" <acoli...@buni.org>
Subject Re: Are proprietary TCK's compatible with open standards?
Date Thu, 05 Jul 2007 04:39:22 GMT
"The Apache Software Foundation provides support for the Apache 
community of open-source software projects. The Apache projects 
<http://projects.apache.org/> are characterized by a collaborative, 
consensus based development process, an open and pragmatic software 
license, and a desire to create high quality software that leads the way 
in its field. We consider ourselves not simply a group of projects 
sharing a server, but rather a community of developers and users."

Until Apache refutes the NDAs there are two classes and a large amount 
of the "Apache development" is neither community-based nor open.  Apache 
should refute the NDAs and let Sun decide whether Apache can continue to 
serve on the spec committees.

The licensing FOU stuff is a symptom of the underlying problem.  What 
does Apache stand for?  Is it for Open Source?  No because the code is 
compromised by FOU restrictions.  Is it for "community developed" 
software -- no because the community cannot participate in the TCK part 
of the development or with other apache developers in key parts of the 
architecture of those projects.  Consensus?  You can't gather consensus 
outside the group in the know

However standing on the principals of "community-developed open source 
software development" (paraphrased from the front page of 
http://apache.org) could cost some people prestige and insider advance 
access to Sun's proprietary information.  Not that they can't apply as 
individuals or as representatives of their company, but representing 
Apache means quite a bit more IMO. 

Refute the NDAs and vote NO an any spec that does not guarantee an open 
TCK/FOU-free standard, because you believe in Apache standing for 
community base open source development (it IS that simple).  Let Sun 
make the next move. 

> I can see how it resolves the NDA issue, but does it really resolve the
> FOU also?  The FOU problem AIUI isn't with the licensing on the TCK 
> software for Harmony, it's in how the results of the test may be 
> interpreted.
> FWIW I wouldn't mind at all if we changed our voting on JSRs along
> those lines, but it might be problematic at this point to refuse
> to accept TCK licenses that are not open source.  Especially when
> people are complaining about refusing them over NDAs, which are 
> actually quite dangerous if they're really about protecting trade
> secrets.  God forbid there is some interesting technique in the TCK
> that gets carried over into the project.
> In any case, IMO we *must* stop entering into NDAs in order to 
> negotiate the terms of the TCK, open source or not.

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