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Why We Still Need OSI

CmdrTaco posted more than 4 years ago | from the both-sides-of-the-debate dept.

Open Source 108

ChiefMonkeyGrinder writes "In response to a comment on yesterday's blog, Simon Phipps writes about the old rivalry between the Free Software Foundation and the Open Source Initiative (OSI). 'I have been (and in plenty of ways still am) a critic of OSI, as well as a firm supporter and advocate of the FSF. I believe OSI should be a member organisation with a representative leadership. ... But the OSI still plays a very important and relevant role in the world of software freedom.' For instance: Licence approvals have become a much more onerous process, with the emphasis on avoiding creation of new licences, updating old or flawed ones, and encouraging the retirement of redundant ones. It would be great to see the stewards of some of the (in retrospect) incorrectly approved licences ask for their retirement."

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FTFS: (0, Flamebait)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#32335904)

Licence approvals have become a much more onerous process

Apparently, so have spell checkers.

Re:FTFS: (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#32335946)

Or is this another "it can be spelled multiple ways, clod!" kind of thing...?

Re:FTFS: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32335980)

It's like that in the true British English. US raped it.

Re:FTFS: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336504)

It's like that in the true British English. US raped it.

It's not our fault! It shouldn't have dressed so provocatively.

Re:FTFS: (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32337034)

Actually, no, US fixed it. French borrowed it from Latin (licentia). When French borrows a word from Latin that like licentia ends in -entia, it becomes -ence. When English borrows a word from Latin that like licentia ends in -entia, it becomes -ense (sentia). But in this case, British borrowed the word from French, while Webster (as he did with color and meter) went back to the Latin original, defrancifying the word.

Re:FTFS: (-1, Flamebait)

daveime (1253762) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337776)

it can be spelled multiple ways

Yes, the US way, and the correct way.

And you'll still swear blind that changes made over a period of 2000 years ago can be "corrected" by a guy named Webster.

In 200 something years, you've bastardised the language, alienated the world, and run up a debt so big, every person on the entire planet could chip in $1940 and still wouldn't pay it all off.

I'm somewhat scared as to what you'll "achieve" in the next 200 years (but very relieved I won't be here to see it).

Re:FTFS: (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338500)

Awww, where's your sence of humure?

Re:FTFS: (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 4 years ago | (#32343280)

Yeah, and in the early 40's, we fucked enough of your women while helping you dipshits correct Chamberlain's mistake that you regained a little genetic diversity.

Re:FTFS: (1)

Nizumzen (1343335) | more than 3 years ago | (#32344818)

The majority of Americans came from Europe. Unless you are talking about Native Americans it would have had exactly zero effect on our genetic makeup.

Re:FTFS: (4, Informative)

DavidR1991 (1047748) | more than 4 years ago | (#32335958)

British spelling. True story (and it's the correct form of licence too)

Re:FTFS: (2, Funny)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337190)

I'm sceptical of this spelling.

Re:FTFS: (1)

lennier (44736) | more than 4 years ago | (#32342308)

Our neighbours are showing their true colours.

Of course we need the OSI (3, Informative)

Bemopolis (698691) | more than 4 years ago | (#32335992)

Sure, it turns out that S.P.H.I.N.X. is not quite the threat they once were thought to be, but the Guild of Calamitous Intent still lives!

Re:Of course we need the OSI (0, Offtopic)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336026)

Smurfs don't lay eggs! I won't tell you this again! Papa Smurf has a fucking beard! They're mammals!

Re:Of course we need the OSI (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336132)

Are you drunk, high, hacked or wtf?

Re:Of course we need the OSI (1)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336258)

It is a quote from the TV show the other poster was referencing.

Re:Of course we need the OSI (1)

aapold (753705) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336084)

S.P.H.Y.N.X. is just O.S.I. masquerading as S.P.H.Y.N.X.....

Re:Of course we need the OSI (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 4 years ago | (#32342480)

So sad. This has been sitting here for eight hours without an upmod?

Don't spoil it by proprosing peace! (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336068)

I so love a good geek slap-fight. Though this is not as good as a true geek throwdown [slashdot.org] , it's entertaining nonetheless.

Re:Don't spoil it by proprosing peace! (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#32339122)

Your link is bad. I think you wanted to send people here. [wikipedia.org]

I agree! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336136)

There are too many allegedly "free" licenses. It's time to eliminate some, starting with the GPL.

Re:I agree! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336894)

we may be trolls, but I agree. I think that GPL is bush league.

Re:I agree! (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338440)

Is the GPL redundant? If not, then you are just being a lame license troll.

It may pain you to consider this but some coders actually choose the GPL. It's their call, not yours.

GPL makes sense for alternating code trees. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32346280)

The problem I see with using GPL is they are using it on releasing individual branches of an original code tree. They should publich GPL'd code for consumption slightly inferior to public domain because it has such commercial restrictions, while maintaining a more desirable privileged code that is not licensed.

Of'course, disclosure somewhat dispels all viable value in maintaining this bifurcative approach, yet that is what a GPL was supposed to achieve; it's supposed to allow modular codes to compete under that licensing scheme while keeping it from an original closed-source code tree (we'll call it pseudocode, if you like).

In this regard, BSD licenses truly are a more *proper* licensing mechanism for an actual product to which maintenance is administered by whomever grants the use. GPL is nothing more than a paradigm-shift meant to mediate in an authoritarian world where everyone is responsible for their actions but aren't willing to hold free software to the same standard.

This is why LGPL was somewhat created, but it still fails in regards of liability; for this is why OSI would practically advocate for a BSD style license. Just look at Richard Stallman: he's a chickenhawk criticizing others yet plaguing the world and market on research grants that never amounted to any productive application in any society but to debase the entire industry. Because of him, the perception of Unix as originally being a light footprint on an efficient architecture has become a giant behemoth where everyone needs more than a BusyBox environment to do menial tasks.

GPL isn't a license; it disallows inheritance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32346434)

It's use in courts recently doesn't even address the non-complex facts that just by GNU as a dis-organization asserting itself on anyone it claims to be a derivative work would be the leverage of these communistic judges to force another proprietor to disclose the reverse-compiled art or pseudocode to whomever asks. GPL takes already-existing concepts and misplaces itself as a competing proprietor, much less than what would call public domain. In this regard, GNU and it's LGPL only creates the facade of a free software mobilized by a slave community forever indebted by virtue of parasitizing an architecture that it contributes no royalties or charity to progress in any patronage, but compel all hardware to bend to the monolithic threaded form of human perception called software and "intellectual property."

OSI got it right, BSD proved it profitable, and a public domain would prove that only GNU and it's GPL would be the most willing to steal software rather than allow developers to actually sell their work as a custom solution on hardware. Do you really want a hardware vendor like IBM arriving on your front-door demanding you disclose them your Source pseudo-code and art just because you circulated a compiled binary that runs on someone's operating system on their architecture? Get a life, RMS. Entire countries have been founded on their nature of having a lifestyle, means, ethic, and culture that only adherents participate with eachother, not for some foreigners to mimic the appearance of another world to what they can only discern; it's like a jew calling hisself White because he likes to eat saurkraut, and it's like a negro calling hisself Aryan because he got a black'n'blue eye in a fistfight.

Acronym hell. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336168)

The FSF should talk to Cisco about bringing the OSI to their IOS, maybe even presenting a paper to the ISO in regards to their CLI. That would help us PHBs CYA when dealing with their IPV6 routers.

So tell me... (3, Insightful)

Rob Riggs (6418) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336196)

Who the heck was in charge of the OSI when all these stupid licenses were being approved? I know there was a huge fuss about some of the crap being approved back in the day. I always felt it was somewhat of a sham meant to give cover to commercial organizations wanting to create "almost open source" licenses. Anyone really desiring to release open source already had a plethora of valid and tested licenses to choose from.

Re:So tell me... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336242)

Eric Raymond. Enough said.

Re:So tell me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32337854)

Speaking of which, why not put yourself in the mood by reading some of ESR's thoughts on sex: http://esr.ibiblio.org/?cat=3 [ibiblio.org]

Crazy how someone can have all this opinions based purely on theory, and not practice.

Re:So tell me... (2, Interesting)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336348)

Anyone really desiring to release open source already had a plethora of valid and tested licenses to choose from.

And the OSI does a very nice job of categorizing them for the convenience of others. What exactly is your issue with them? That they recognize licenses as open source licenses of some kind that you personally dislike?

Re:So tell me... (4, Informative)

eln (21727) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336762)

OSI was purely a product of the Internet boom. It was designed to "mainstream" Open Source by encouraging businesses to open source their stuff. At a time when businesses were scrambling to make sense of this whole Internet thing, the OSI came along and tried to convince them that open source was a big part of embracing the Internet. To do this, they basically bent the definition of what "open source" was so they could get businesses who were highly suspicious of it on board. Any business that gave even lip service to open source was basically allowed to carry the label in the name of expanding the movement, even if their licenses amounted to little more than "you can look at some of the source, but only between 2-3pm on alternating Thursdays when the moon is full, and you can't copy any of it." That's an exaggeration of course, but it seems clear now that the over-eagerness to get businesses on board and the lengths that were taken to get them on board seriously watered down both the definition and the spirit of what open source is supposed to be.

While Bruce Perens has managed to spin all of this into a lucrative career, and Eric S. Raymond managed to famously become a temporary Internet paper millionaire before his big mouth made him a pariah to the movement, the OSI's eagerness to shape (some would say distort) open source in order to appease businesses has been a major point of friction between them and the FSF. While many businesses today use open source, and some even contribute to it, it seems for the most part the fruit of OSI's labor is that many businesses learned how to use open source software to reduce their own development and/or licensing costs while giving nothing back to the community that produced it.

So yes, from the perspective of many of the businesses, it was a big sham meant to give them an "open source stamp of approval" while remaining largely closed source and proprietary. The OSI, however, ignored that in the name of "spreading the movement", which happened to work out well for their own personal finances (if only temporarily, in Raymond's case).

Re:So tell me... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32337172)

and Eric S. Raymond managed to famously become a temporary Internet paper millionaire before his big mouth made him a pariah to the movement

You're not still holding that whole "white supremacy" thing against dear Eric, are you?

Re:So tell me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32338222)

Way to slur what he said, asshole.

Re:So tell me... (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338230)

It was designed to "mainstream" Open Source by encouraging businesses to open source their stuff. At a time when businesses were scrambling to make sense of this whole Internet thing, the OSI came along and tried to convince them that open source was a big part of embracing the Internet.

Yep, I always looked at it as the process by which big-L Libertarians try to reconcile their advocacy of free software with their obsessive love of money. Never really gelled.

Re:So tell me... (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338546)

The truth is that cooperation is not at odds with making a profit. Sometimes it is in everyone's
best interests to collaborate. Governments play this role when individual companies are unable
to act like grown up people and cooperate when it makes sense to do so.

One key thing to remember is that most companies are not interested in being the next Microsoft
or Apple. So a framework that is centered around this sort of approach to software does not work
for most companies (or people).

If something is not a part of your core competitive advantage, being terribly proprietary about
it probably doesn't do you any benefit. It may do you harm. It is likely the least efficient
approach in the aggregate.

Re:So tell me... (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 4 years ago | (#32342104)

OSI's eagerness to shape (some would say distort) open source in order to appease businesses has been a major point of friction between them and the FSF.

Why would definition of "open source" be a point of contention for the FSF? Aren't they themselves claiming that they're all about "free software", which is totally not the same thing as "open source"?

Re:So tell me... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#32347092)

Why would definition of "open source" be a point of contention for the FSF? Aren't they themselves claiming that they're all about "free software", which is totally not the same thing as "open source"?

OSI wanted to set itself up as the gatekeeper of all Open Source licenses, of which Free Software licenses are a subset. They wanted to be the ones to interpret the licenses for you and tell you which one to use. And they wanted to define the term Open Source to be similar to Free Software, when it obviously is not, based on past usage: "Open" means interoperable and "Open Source" means that you can see the source so that you can alter it for your own purposes (if you are a customer) or interoperate with it. It's basically a form of documentation, releasing the code as that documentation. The OSI's activities can be taken as an attempt to lump Free and Open software together, but one is about rights and the other is about pragmatism.

Re:So tell me... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#32347038)

Any business that gave even lip service to open source was basically allowed to carry the label in the name of expanding the movement, even if their licenses amounted to little more than "you can look at some of the source, but only between 2-3pm on alternating Thursdays when the moon is full, and you can't copy any of it."

Open means interoperable and Open Source means you can look at the source and usually even use it to make modifications to the product, but says nothing about redistribution. This is why Free Software is superior to Open Source software. However, both have their place; Open Source is still preferably to being completely closed.

While Bruce Perens has managed to spin all of this into a lucrative career, and Eric S. Raymond managed to famously become a temporary Internet paper millionaire before his big mouth made him a pariah to the movement, the OSI's eagerness to shape (some would say distort) open source in order to appease businesses has been a major point of friction between them and the FSF.

Personally I find Bruce Perens' desire to claim that he invented the term "Open Source" (hint: he didn't; even Caldera was using it before he claimed to have invented it, to advertise a release of FreeDOS) to be the crux of this point. He who invents a term gets to tell us what he meant by it, but Perens is making a claim to something he never invented. At least two more of the four people involved in the meeting at which he claims it was invented also claim to have invented it, so they're all a bunch of liars.

Still, it's important to recognize that Open Source only means you get to look at the code.

So yes, from the perspective of many of the businesses, it was a big sham meant to give them an "open source stamp of approval" while remaining largely closed source and proprietary.

No, if you can look at the code, it's Open Source. Further, only the customer really need have this access for it to be Open Source.

Re:So tell me... (3, Insightful)

harlows_monkeys (106428) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338544)

Who the heck was in charge of the OSI when all these stupid licenses were being approved?

If the license meets their "Open Source" definition, then they have to approve it if they want to maintain any credibility.

This is no different than the way the FSF lists many licenses on their list of Free Software licenses that they tell you that you should not use. The licenses meet their definition of "Free Software" so they have to include them or they lose credibility.

we need OSI to keep their paperwork current (3, Insightful)

iggymanz (596061) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336294)

Re:we need OSI to keep their paperwork current (3, Interesting)

WebMink (258041) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336744)

Note that the story here was that, much to the current Board's surprise, it turned out that accounts for some previous years well in the past had been created but for some unknown reason not filed with the State of California. The first the current Board knew of this was when we heard about the suspension. We immediately located the old accounts and arranged for them to be retrospectively filed, and in response the State lifted its suspension.

Naturally there are people who want to keep the memory of this incident alive and are doing their best to raise it every time OSI is mentioned. While not desirable, we've since heard from many sources that this is an all-too-common event for all-volunteer organisations.

Re:we need OSI to keep their paperwork current (1)

s4ltyd0g (452701) | more than 3 years ago | (#32343992)

sorry about the bad down mod

Re:we need OSI to keep their paperwork current (1)

iggymanz (596061) | more than 3 years ago | (#32350824)

that was very *recent* incident.

so how's your mandatory 990-N filing with the federal IRS? last I checked OSI was delinquent on that too

OSI Paperwork Believed Current (1)

WebMink (258041) | more than 3 years ago | (#32351722)

We believe everything is now up to date - the IRS filings were part of the same issue we inherited from the early days of OSI. We (mainly OSI's Treasurer Danese Cooper actually) worked on these issues last year with the help of DLA Piper (law firm donating their service) and today we are completely in the good graces of both the IRS and the California State Franchise Tax Board.

If you are aware of other issues that haven't popped up on our radar, please tell osi (at) opensource (dot) org so we can fix them. I realise that's not so much fun as posting them on Slashdot first, but it will help get things fixed faster just like filing a fix on Subversion fixes software faster than writing to The Register about it.

OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336376)

OSI is getting exactly what they pushed: open code tied to closed devices. When you fight for open as a key to business success rather than user freedom, we get Android and their closed phones, we get devices running Linux that are essentially black boxes because you can't get them to run anything else, etc.

What OSI has pushed forward has taken hold. However, I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (3, Interesting)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336404)

I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices.

So quick to disregard BSD advocates...

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (4, Interesting)

spottedkangaroo (451692) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336448)

If you use the BSD license you end up with OSX and (I mean this as seriously as I can say it): fuck Apple. I think Apple is a great reason to never chose the BSD license.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (4, Insightful)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336516)

You make the mistake of assuming that BSD advocates are not fully aware of this possibility, and are perfectly ok with it. The BSD TCP/IP stack has found it's way into just about every proprietary system since it was around too, do you think they don't realize this as well? Not everyone is a fan of copyleft and it is ignorant to assume so.

BSD is good for some things, but not this: (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336682)

The quote in question:

I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices.

BSD leaves us with completely closed devices (OSX, i, etc.) not exactly the solution to 'half-open devices' that GPLv3 advocates are looking for.

Re:BSD is good for some things, but not this: (4, Interesting)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336830)

I think we can all agree now

The point is, we can't. I'm not saying the BSD license is a "solution" to the "half-open devices 'problem'". I'm saying BSD advocates don't view it as a problem.

Furthermore, OSX is not completely closed: see Darwin.

Re:BSD is good for some things, but not this: (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#32347128)

Furthermore, OSX is not completely closed: see Darwin.

Darwin is inferior to FreeBSD. All the interesting parts of OSX are closed. OSX is an indictment against the BSD license, not support for it.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (3, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336674)

I fail to see a problem. You make it sound like Apple doesn't give back and that they just stole the code without putting in any time, effort or money on integrating it and creating a polished product. Point of fact, Apple uses the BSD license on their code, not sure if they do for all the open source stuff, but they definitely use it.

Additionally it means that you can use binaries if you choose to, whereas with the GPL that's been getting dicier and dicier over the years.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336734)

Why? Are you trying to imply they just use the code but don't contribute back?

http://http//opensource.apple.com/ [http] begs to differ.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (3, Funny)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336760)

If you use the BSD license you end up with OSX

The most popular desktop Unix variant in the world? Oh the horrors!

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (2, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338604)

> The most popular desktop Unix variant in the world? Oh the horrors!

Nothing visible or relevant about the platform is actually Unix.

In the case of the more closed Apple devices, you can't even access that part of the device unless you indulge in a hack that may or may not be illegal under the DMCA.

All the Unix-ness of MacOS does is gives Apple a shortcut and free R&D. It's like a big fat hunk of corporate welfare. Except it is being extracted directly from the masses rather than going through a government intermediary first.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (3, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338834)

The most popular desktop Unix variant in the world? Oh the horrors!

Let me put this as politely as I manage: If all you care about is having your code used by as many as possible, I'm sure Microsoft would take on another unpaid intern. If you know that 99.8% of the people use your code as OS X and 0.2% use it as any of the *BSDs (given desktop market shares of 5% and 0.01% respectively), who are you really working for? Libraries and applications are a bit different, a BSD tool can run alongside a commercial one but you normally just run the one OS.

I think there's a huge perception gap between the BSD crowd and Apple. The BSD crowd see it like "Oh yeah, we're the CORE. The engine of the car. We're like the most important part of OS X". Apple is in my impression more like "The BSDs? Yeah we got like the concrete foundation from them, the bricks and the I-beams and whatnot. But we did all the design and layout and architecture and decorating to build the things that makes people go wow. The rest is commodities and it made no sense for us to reinvent the wheel."

That last bit I've heard as an explanation quite often. but to me that's a rather dismal prospect. Products that aren't ever going to make it on their own, that exist only deep down within some other products and that rarely get you the gratitude of anyone. Coders aren't given tasks that are already done, if there's already code to do something they'll get a different task - they don't get slack because of BSD. Customers are so detached from this process they probably don't even know OS X is based on BSD and Apple isn't going to make any PR effort to inform them. Nor would it help them since they can't change OS X anyway. Steve Jobs is probably happy for the lower way costs improve his profit margins though, so he can buy more turtlenecks.

Yes of course it is open source, the code doesn't go away. But if it hardly sees any use in any other product but OS X, what's the point of it all? Why not just be an employee and get paid to write OS X code? Granted, there are many issues with the GPL but for better and worse it's 100% used in open source software. It's not hiding deep ine bowels of the "About" page and some innards noone will ever see.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

PipsqueakOnAP133 (761720) | more than 3 years ago | (#32353282)

Hold on there, you assume that all people care about the same things.

For example, a girl I knew loves her BMW M3, not because it's an M3, but because it has the BMW logo on the front. It could have been a 318 for all she cared. At the same time, I think it's cool because it's a M3 with all the nice engineering tweaking that went into it that makes it special to me.

Non-techie Mac-users will never care about what BSD is or what GPL is, or whether or not you can install an OpenSSH server on it. Advertise it and they'll go "huh? where's the lickable goodness?" Point is, they won't care. Heck, more mysterious acronyms might even scare them off. Marketing at Apple knows that.

All the techie Mac-users already know because, well, they're tech oriented and if you don't know BSD, you might as well give up your geek card right there any then.

As for the BSD-proponents, sometimes some people don't care about having their name in big lights. Sometimes it's all about standing back, grinning, and thinking to yourself, "I built that shit and the whole world works because of it."

What is the point of open source? It's to help others be more productive by advancing the field using what they know instead of reinventing the wheel every time. If Apple had to build an entire POSIX-compliant OS from scratch before making the GUI, would that really help the users? To be saying that it's unfair that Apple simply acknowledges FreeBSD as a userland foundation is a little strange to me when it's not even certain that the authors think the same. Apple met the license. And the authors can say, if they choose, "yup, we helped make that happen too." The alternative is, well, do we want to return to the time where every Unix-ish OS was built up from scratch by their individual vendors with almost compatible tools? My guess is no.

To all that worked on the BSD tcpip stack that the whole internet is based off: It is pretty darn obvious that your talent makes the world go round. Thanks once again.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337066)

Apple could have based OS X on linux (remember mklinux?) -- A linux kernel with a closed-source GUI on top. How is that any different than using a BSD kernel (which they do provide the source for) underneath?

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

StayFrosty (1521445) | more than 4 years ago | (#32339034)

Apple uses the XNU kernel--a sort of Mach/BSD hybrid, not the BSD kernel. OS X does, however, borrow a lot of userspace utilities from FreeBSD and NetBSD.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (2, Insightful)

samkass (174571) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337148)

If you use the BSD license you end up with OSX and (I mean this as seriously as I can say it): fuck Apple. I think Apple is a great reason to never chose the BSD license.

Yeah! Fuck Apple! Fuck WebKit and the Chrome it rode in on! Fuck LLVM and clang! Fuck GrandCentralDispatch and their attempts at bringing us into the modern world of parallelism. Fuck the dozens and dozens of projects [apple.com] that Apple has spent their money contributing to.

Seriously, man, calm down. Apple is actually a perfect case study in why BSD-like licenses are a great thing for innovation and code sharing in the corporate world. Your Chrome browser running on your Android wouldn't be half so nice if not for Apple...

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (3, Informative)

StayFrosty (1521445) | more than 4 years ago | (#32339088)

Your Chrome browser running on your Android wouldn't be half so nice if not for Apple...

Since Webkit is a fork of KHTML, that is subject to debate. Rendering with KHTML in Konqueror always worked fine for me long before Apple had anything to do with it. The Gecko rendering engine could have easily been chosen as well if KHTML was not mature enough.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (2, Insightful)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337302)

If you use the BSD license you end up with OSX

And Free/NetBSD, etc. If you use a BSD-style license (or a public domain declaration, like SQLite), sure, you'll have commercial, closed derivatives. If there is sufficient community interest and the code is open, you'll also have a thriving open-source community, and often the people making closed derivatives (or in-house derivatives that aren't distributed under any license) will still commit code -- and money --back to the open projects (because they realize the benefit they get from having the community improving the code, even if they have some bits they want to keep for themselves.)

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337516)

Fuck OpenSSH/SSL, all the BSD projects, GPL OR BUST!

And you wonder why the world doesn't understand OSI, you can't even agree among yourselves.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338392)

OK, BUST.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | more than 4 years ago | (#32342036)

It certainly explains why the business world tries to run as far away from open source initiatives as possible. Many will pay good money for software that comes without migraines.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | more than 4 years ago | (#32341978)

Why? How is OS X worse than Mac OS? You would prefer 100% closed vs 100% open, and anything in between is a wussy sellout? Curse Apple for choosing an open source OS, and praise Microsoft for sticking to their proprietary principles.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

TheTurtlesMoves (1442727) | more than 3 years ago | (#32345710)

You know the people who released their software--the ones that did the work don't care, or are even happy. Thats why they use a BSD license.

Or do you believe that the people writing the code don't have the right to release the code as they see fit?

When i release code under a BSD license or even public domain, its so people like Apple have the freedom to take my code, change it a bit, make money and not release the changes. I *want* to give them and others that freedom.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

PipsqueakOnAP133 (761720) | more than 3 years ago | (#32353008)

Kinda like the 4.4 BSD TCP/IP protocol stack is a perfect example to not chose GPL.

Our current situation... (1)

Chibi Merrow (226057) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337142)

However, I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices.

I disagree. I much prefer our current situation of "half-open" devices that actually exist and that I can use over the mythical fully open devices that apparently are used by the tooth fairy and santa claus.

Re:Our current situation... (2, Informative)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337226)

There are a lot of fully open devices. Or at least a ton more open than other electronics because you can run whatever apps you feel like on there, change the OS, and do both without jailbreaking or otherwise having to resort to other methods.

There is the GP2x which is similar to a PSP, now the Pandora, the Nexus One, Google Dev phone, etc.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

sago007 (857444) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337212)

However, I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices.

So in the future all devices will be completly closed and prevented from ever being open?

I would prefer to be in a complete open world. But then reading the FSF's homepage I often get the impression that if you cannot convert fully to free software then there is no point converting at all. They constantly attack any project allowing a transition from closed to open if it is not fully open. It just isn't possible right now and only gets harder with time.

I believe that the goal is ultimately the same (fully open) but FSF has a philosophically approach with freedom for a few and OSI has an realistic approach for freedom for the mass.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337390)

The thing is, as much as I'd really like to dismiss RMS and the rest of the FSF as a bunch of loons who don't understand how software works, I can't because they've been spot on for a lot of things. And really it seems like http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/infrastructures.png [xkcd.com] we say that their policies are unreasonable, that their predictions are outlandish but then they come true.

Look back at "Can you trust your computer?" written by RMS in I believe 2002

The technical idea underlying treacherous [trusted] computing is that the computer includes a digital encryption and signature device, and the keys are kept secret from you. Proprietary programs will use this device to control which other programs you can run, which documents or data you can access, and what programs you can pass them to. These programs will continually download new authorization rules through the Internet, and impose those rules automatically on your work. If you don't allow your computer to obtain the new rules periodically from the Internet, some capabilities will automatically cease to function.

Does that not sound like it hasn't already happened? In 2002, yeah, it sounded stupid, sounded outlandish. But look at the iPhone, restrictions on even Android devices like the BackFlip, DRM in the form of "unlimited music", etc.

And this isn't an isolated incident, look at http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/essays-and-articles.html [gnu.org] and see when they were written, a lot of them, if not all of them, came true. Perhaps not in the way that it was written, but the underlying forces did it in a different way.

I'd really, really like to say that the FSF has unworkable policies, and many times they do, but I can't help but looking at their past work and seeing how they were right on track.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (2, Informative)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#32339840)

Does that not sound like it hasn't already happened? In 2002, yeah, it sounded stupid

Uh, no, it didn't. It had already happened then; the description in the essay is exactly what trusted computing was being sold as, by its promoters, to the kinds of companies that would use it to enforce their restrictions, looked at from the consumer's point of view -- it wasn't an extrapolation, just the same description from the consumer perspective.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (3, Insightful)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337380)

However, I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices.

No, we can't. First of all, because I doubt we'll all agree that "half-open" devices are inherently evil, and second because I'm sure some of us would disagree that, even granting that "half-open" devices are evil, that the general approach in the GPL v3 approach to addressing the problem is desirable, and lastly because the GPL v3 specifically allows half-open business- (rather than consumer-) oriented devices, so even if the general approach it takes to addressing half-open devices were a desirable approach to dealing with a real problem, the GPLv3 would not, in fact, prevent half-open devices.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (3, Insightful)

dfghjk (711126) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337684)

"However, I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices."

No, we can't.

Open software is open software. It does not come with any promise that you have hardware that you can retask as you please.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 4 years ago | (#32342316)

Open software is open software. It does not come with any promise that you have hardware that you can retask as you please.

Perhaps this is why OSI is useless and FSF useful despite the oddities of RMS, it's the same "software you can look at but not touch" all over again. If you have read the story of why RMS created the GPL it was obvious that he wanted it to fix his broken printer, not that other people from other companies could build other printers with the same driver. There's no technical difference between fixing a simple bug and retasking the hardware, the latter is a consequence of the former which was clearly part of the purpose from the very beginning. The current half-open devices are a failure of the spirit of the license, if not the words of the GPLv1/2.

Remember that the GPLv2 was designed in 1991, before the PGP controversy and long before public signing of anything became common, when encryption was highly guarded "munitions" and only special builds could have more than 40 bit encryption, before the first PlayStation and the rise of closed consoles and gadgets, on Wikipedia there's not a single digital DRM system list going back that far and it certainly was not backed by DMCA-like laws making them a crime to circumvent. They missed it, plain and simple. Just like they missed patent covenants and other trickery, but it was never their purpose to allow it.

Developers and users come as chicken and egg, it makes sense to develop what you use it and it makes sense to use what gives the users freedom. Some projects now have the luxury of not caring about the GPLv3 because they're way past the chicken and egg and will go on regardless, like for example Linux. But for the users, the GPLv3 is undeniably better so all other things equal they should always go with the GPLv3. In the initial analysis, it doesn't matter where the users are. But eventually if the users choose GPLv3, then users will become developers and write GPLv3 code. Almost everyone is a user before they become a developer, except the preciously few founders.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

lennier (44736) | more than 4 years ago | (#32342538)

"However, I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices."

No, we can't.

Open software is open software. It does not come with any promise that you have hardware that you can retask as you please.

Right, and (sigh) because of the existence of this viewpoint, now I understand why Richard Stallman was always so careful to distinguish Free Software from merely Open Source.

Freedom, in the Free Software sense, is about the positive rights of the user - it starts by asking 'what can the user do to change their system?' under the assumption that the user being able to change their system is a good and right and creative thing which adds value to everyone. Obviously, from this mindset, restricting the hardware, while it may not technically be a 'software' issue, is very much antithetical to the spirit of user freedom and will result (as a byproduct) in loss of creativity and utility to the whole economy. Because Free Software assumes that the users are the drivers of innovation, not vendors, and that ultimately the creation of all software must devolve from a market base to voluntary user-led projects, at all point pushing creativity and control to the edges.

Open Source, on the other hand, focuses purely and narrowly on a specific technical issue - the availability of software source code - and refuses to look at hardware. Because it comes from a different viewpoint, which sees the user desire for freedom and the vendor's desire for control as something more like counterbalanced forces, both of which contribute but neither of which should dominate the exchange. And while it does honestly value openness, it tends to be more 'pragmatic' and sympathetic to the idea that value, creativity and innovation really comes from the vendors, operating under commercial competition, and so tends to give vendors more slack when they want to restrict things on the grounds that 'well they do need to make money, and we don't want to become fanatical extremists about this 'user freedom' thing. We still need vendors to make choices for us and we'll partner with them.'

The difference is more than a mere subtlety. While both groups are talking about software, they tend to agree. But on issues like hardware and the rise of cloud systems, the Open Source people are more likely to become irritated with even raising the issue of freedom - until they've been bitten by an actual threat. They walk right into the BitKeepers and Facebooks and GIFs and H.264s and Apple App Stores of the world and don't notice the potential for exploitation until it actually happens. This is because of their pragmatic 'loose consensus and working code' attitude - while the Free Software people, being philosophers and lawyers, seem fluffier but are are a bit more imaginative and proactive in their sensing of potential threats and exploits, having run through these scenarios in their minds.

It does take both types to get things done, but we really should be paying more attention to the (sigh) Stallmans of the world, because despite his bad personal habits, he really is right.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338452)

"However, I think we can all agree now that.."

This is Slashdot. Any sentence that begins with those words is false. With the possible exception of completing the sentence with "our coworkers suck".

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

not-my-real-name (193518) | more than 4 years ago | (#32339264)

"However, I think we can all agree now that.."

This is Slashdot. Any sentence that begins with those words is false. With the possible exception of completing the sentence with "our coworkers suck".

I'm unemployed you insensitive clod.

Besides, even when I was employed, none of my coworkers offered me a blowjob.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 4 years ago | (#32342796)

"However, I think we can all agree now that.."

This is Slashdot. Any sentence that begins with those words is false.

I vehemently disagree.

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

Florian Weimer (88405) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338460)

OSI is getting exactly what they pushed: open code tied to closed devices.

Ten years ago, the FSF did not care about software embedded in devices, either, even though it was a printer which got Stallman started. I'm not even sure if much has changed; to some degree, that's understandable because restrictive hardware environments can make it difficult to empower users to program.

However, I think we can all agree now that GPL V3 was a good idea because it would prevent our current situation of half-open devices.

With the GPLv3, the device vendor can rent the device to you, so that you can perform a service for them (like supplying power and Internet connectivity). In this case, they do not have to provide source code to you, and are even required to slap a very restrictive license on the software ("on terms that prohibit [you] from making any copies of
[their] copyrighted material outside [your] relationship with [them]").

Re:OSI is getting exactly what they pushed (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | more than 4 years ago | (#32341934)

I think some could agree, not all. Getting open source onto mostly closed devices is not completely a negative. It has spread open source, it has given developers more choices, it has given customers more features, and it has given back many improvements to the original sources. Open source should be about sharing quality software, not pushing political views.

OSI approved MS-PL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336410)

This license governs use of the accompanying software. If you use the software, you accept this license. If you do not accept the license, do not use the software.

(emphasis mine)
But the remaining part of the license only talks about distribution and derivatives. Why does a end-user have to agree to this? They should have worded this one a bit more precise.

OSI (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336432)

The thing that always bothered me about OSI was the pomposity. They come out late in the game, years after the creation of the open source process, after Linux, Apache, etc. are all mature, and then have tried to take credit for basically everything open source since. Then have the nerve to frequently post on slashdot how horrible it is that they're not recognized for their tremendous accomplishments, and that anyone who is skeptical of OSI's claims is just completely ignorant of the history of the organization.

Re:OSI (1, Flamebait)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338504)

Right. In contrast to the known humility of GNU, FSF and RMS.

Re:OSI (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 4 years ago | (#32339488)

Right. In contrast to the known humility of GNU, FSF and RMS.

Yet (a) they actually did start back in the olden days, and have done a tremendous amount, and (b) get called out as arrogant all the time. Arrogance is a little easier to take from someone who actually is almost as good/important/influential as they claim to be.

Re:OSI (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32339934)

I'm not sure, but I think the original post was satire. If it wasn't, then it should have been.

"Lignux", anyone?

Why We Still Need OS! (0, Offtopic)

smdm (1125481) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336456)

wow, that would be a thought provoking discussion. ...wait, what?

OSI Foundation? (2)

anexkahn (935249) | more than 4 years ago | (#32336908)

I was thinking OSI Model when I ready the title of the article....a little confusing.

Re:OSI Foundation? (1)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 4 years ago | (#32337476)

Typical layer 8 problem.

At last! Common Ground! (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338574)

Redefining well-known words and acronyms is something the OSI and FSF can agree upon.

Re:OSI Foundation? (1)

bosef1 (208943) | more than 4 years ago | (#32343604)

I kept wondering who wanted to defund the Office of Scientific Intelligence, especially after all of Steve Austin's work.

Ohio Scientific Instruments (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32336912)

It was a great company for its time.

Get outta town! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32337022)

Some might even say that the OSI plays a bigger role in the world of OSS than it does in the world of Free Software. Who'd have thought it.

OSI relevancy (2, Funny)

triffid_98 (899609) | more than 4 years ago | (#32338600)

I respectfully disagree. Oscar Goldman's organization [wikipedia.org] is still quite relevant in the fields of hostage negotiation, Bigfoot sightings and Russia oriented plot-lines.

Forget THAT OSI... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32342618)

...the OSI(R) I trust was run by Max headroom himself! Dan Aykroyd used to intro the show,

Retire NOSA! (1)

paxcoder (1222556) | more than 4 years ago | (#32341272)

Really, a license that prohibits integration of third-party code is not free software (it renders improved NOSA code non-free).
I argue that's against freedom 3:

The freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions to others (freedom 3). By doing this you can give the whole community a chance to benefit from your changes. Access to the source code is a precondition for this.

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