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Safari vs. KHTML

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the sibling-rivalry dept.

The Internet 553

Johnny Mnemonic writes "CNET has a story that describes the divergence between the code base of Safari and KHTML. Although there were high hopes that Apple would contribute significantly to the OSS project, that optimism has all but disappeared. Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend? Can OSS code and goals harmonize with the goals and needs of corporation designed code? Is it that Apple mismanaged the relationship, or that the KHTML guys expected too much? Interesting warning for other OSS-corporate marriages." We've previously reported on the frustration in the OSS community on this issue.

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MOD PARENT DOWN. PARENT IS A TROLL!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510004)

Thanks! FP!

Its only the bad things we head about? (5, Insightful)

Folmer (827037) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510008)

Afaik the relationship between apple and freebsd is fine, and they use eachothers' patches etc. The problem seems to be that apple wanted to develop the browser in another direction than kde, and the communication stopped as they didnt use eachothers patches. As apple are having paid developers working on it, they should develop it their way and kde should maybe look at their methods to see if they are able to work in that way. If not, though luck.. I cant see that apple is the bad guy here.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (5, Informative)

Suppafly (179830) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510060)

The problem with Apple and KDE is that apple doesn't make patches that are easy to apply to the khtml source. They release one patch that has tons of changes instead of one change per patch.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (4, Insightful)

Metzli (184903) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510134)

That's a problem for KDE, but does Apple not have the right to do what they want with their patches? They wrote the code and they're releasing it to be viewed and used, so shouldn't that be lauded rather than complaining that they're not releasing things the way that the other guys want?

If Apple complained that the KDE guys were releasing code in a manner than didn't work for Apple, then people in the OSS community would say that the Big Bad Corporation (tm) is trying to control OSS and tell the developers what to do. Does Apple not get the same consideration? I thought the point of open sourcing code was to allow people to do what they want with it. Apple is, so either take what they're giving (for free) or shut up and write your own patches. It seems simple enough to me.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (0, Troll)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510232)

The thing is, the KDE guys did Apple a favor, and DID make it easy for them to get at the code. Apple just spit on their courtesy by just releasing their monolithic patches. That's what people are pissed about. Not legality, not anything other than Apple code releases just generally not being of much use in the form they're released in, especially after the OSS guys did so much to help them.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (0, Offtopic)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510247)

Actually, no, they don't. The LGPL says they have to release the code but they cannot (for instance) run it through an obfuscator before releasing the patch. The LGPL says that changes have to be returned in the "preferred form" for exactly this reason: given half a chance some corporations will try and follow the exact wording of the license and not the spirit.

The whole point of the LGPL is so people can "share with their neighbours". Go read the GNU manifesto some time. Enormous undocumented patch dumps that can't be integrated without causing tons of regressions thanks to code nobody understands is not "sharing with your neighbours", it's grudgingly doing the absolute bare minimum you have to avoid getting sued (and to be frank, it's such a grey area if KDE was a huge corporate as well they'd probably be in court by now).

So yes the KDE developers have a right to be pissed off, just the same as you would if a partner in a business relationship used a particular reading of the fine print to screw you over.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (4, Insightful)

MoneyT (548795) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510366)

Yes, because running it through the obfuscator is not how you work on code.

But the source files are just that.

If some 3 man team in the middle of nowhere started working on KHTML and just realeased the changed documents back to the public, would there be such a great outcry over the fact that they aren't providing the bug trackers?

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510372)

Enormous undocumented patch dumps that can't be integrated without causing tons of regressions thanks to code nobody understands is not "sharing with your neighbours"

It's exactly "sharing with your neighbours". It's just not "hand-holding your neighbours".

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (4, Informative)

Otter (3800) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510387)

Absolutely not. Apple is required to offer source code to their product in the "preferred form". They have absolutely no obligation to make their changes trivially backportable to the original codebase.

Do you think the code to all those Linux-based hardware devices can be instantly patch'ed into the kernel.org source?

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (2, Informative)

Otter (3800) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510269)

In any case, the patches [mozillazine.org] that triggered this whole issue were perfectly manageable in size.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (1)

killjoe (766577) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510287)

" That's a problem for KDE, but does Apple not have the right to do what they want with their patches?"

Of course they do. Just like the KDE people have the right complain when Apple says that they are giving back to their community but acts otherwise.

Of course the GPL would have prevented all this but that's another topic.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (5, Insightful)

angst7 (62954) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510337)

As others will likely point out, they certainly are within their legal rights to do what they like where patches are concerned. But you're missing a crucial distinction between Must and Ought.

It is not required that Apple play nice with the way they release patches. That is to say there is not 'must' apart from the requirement that they make them available. But there's alot of 'ought' that comes into play when you use OSS code. This is basically a niceness test that says, in effect, if you use this code to make money, great, but you 'ought' to give back in such a way that we can make use of as well.

Having said all that I feel a bit bad about even responding to an obvious troll. There's very little 'insight' in your comment.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510136)

What!?

I thought a "monolithic" company was incapable of producing code at a faster rate than the massive army of Open Source programmers working during their lunch hours and weekends could handle.

You are in danger of making me question everything I read in "The Cathedral and the Bazaar."

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510166)

From the parent: "the problem with Apple and KDE is that apple doesn't make patches that are easy to apply to the khtml source

Noone seems to bitch about X.org changes not getting back into XFree86. Forks are not a bad thing. If Apple can move the software faster than the khtml guys did, they have my blessings. I wouldn't want to slow down Apple's progress by making them jump through hoops for the KHTML guys any more than I'd want to slow down X.org.

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

For almost everyone in the world it's a "fully realized feature" not "unrealized danger" of open source that if a new team can advance the software faster than an old team, they're FREE to do so because the software is OPEN.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (5, Informative)

JohnFluxx (413620) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510296)

"Noone seems to bitch about X.org changes not getting back into XFree86."

True, but the X.org changes are all in some form of vcs unlike the apple changes that they give us.

The only 'hoops' we have asked for is that they give us some form of vcs (version control) logs rather than just a single 60MB dump :(

How on earth are we supposed to do anything with comments like "this fixes 2374924" without being able to view what 2374924 is? Some of the kde developers have offered to sign NDA's just to see the commit messages, but apple refuses to reply to such requests.

Personally I think Apple would gain more from working with us a bit more. Particulary with our new dom changes.

Re:Its only the bad things we head about? (4, Informative)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510109)

Is it? The last I heard of that relationship, Jordan Hubbard said FreeBSD had got a few minor bugfixes and test suites back. This quote sums up the Apple/FreeBSD relationship quite well, I think:

In his own posting to the FreeBSD mail archives dated June 25, Hubbard stated that his new "day job" would not be the end of his contributions to the FreeBSD and other projects. In his words, "Apple does fully understand the importance of FreeBSD and they don't want me or anyone else to stop working on it. FreeBSD doesn't compete with Apple's product offerings in any way and provides an excellent source of technology for them."

Taken from here [extremetech.com] .

Not a big deal. (2, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510262)

The story is blowing up something that should not be. Apple has been contributing code back to the KHTML team. The team has difficulty integrating it due to the large differences and lack of man power. Apple is simply suggesting that the KHTML team work with Safari to have one code base, which is a good idea. while I am not wild about the KHTML losing control of things, Apple has a full time group working on the base. So why not do the firefox/mozilla thing and move to where the action is. Besides, if KHTML moves to working closer with apple, it will produce a third major code base, behind MSIE and Mozilla. Basically, 2 out of the 3 will be in the *nix world. In addition, the 2 will follow the standards closer, which will lead to more developers following standards.

SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510014)

Whiny bastards.

"Oh noes, our previously obscure product is now getting press, and we are not getting teh monies!"

THIS POST BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE LETTERS F&P, B (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510017)

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honestly. (4, Funny)

Suppafly (179830) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510032)

We've previously reported on the frustration in the OSS community on this issue.

Atleast you're being honest.

Re:honestly. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510073)

So that means it's okay to post a dupe if you link the dupe in the summary? Brilliant!

Re:honestly. (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510170)

Does that mean it's also okay to karma whore by re-posting highly rated replies to the original as long as you also link to them?

Come to pappa, sweet "+1, Insightful" mods!

Another question (4, Interesting)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510033)

As long as they're abiding by the terms of the license, does Apple, any corporation, or any entity for that matter, have any obligation to contribute anything back to the project? Who gets to decide when someone is contributing "enough"?

Additionally Apple posts all of its open source code [apple.com] ; here's the page for WebCore [apple.com] , which states:

WebCore is a framework for Mac OS X that takes the cross-platform KHTML library (part of the KDE project) and combines it with an adapter library specific to WebCore called KWQ that makes it work with Mac OS X technologies. KHTML is written in C++ and KWQ is written in Objective C++, but WebCore presents an Objective C programming interface. WebCore requires the JavaScriptCore framework.

The current version of WebCore is based on the KHTML library from KDE 3.0.2. Changes that are specific to WebCore are marked with #ifAPPLE_CHANGES. Other changes to improve performance and web page compatibility are intended for integration into future versions of the KHTML library.


Sounds like a case of sour grapes to me. I'm sure the level of cooperation and collaboration that the KDE/KHTML/Konqueror folks had hoped for wasn't there, if only because Apple keeps everything secret before its release (including everything related to Safari 2.0 in Tiger). Another example of a corporate need butting heads with a contrary OSS philosophy. And I'm sure Apple's main priority is not developing an infrastructure to cohesively and voluminously contribute changes back to projects. It's more like, "Ok, here's our stuff... [apple.com] "...it's all there for anyone to see.

Re:Another question (4, Insightful)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510096)

As long as they're abiding by the terms of the license, does Apple, any corporation, or any entity for that matter, have any obligation to contribute anything back to the project?

If you don't like that people JUST obey the license, then change the license!

i.e. If a company decides to launch a similar product based on this source code, they're obligued to keep a revision history in a previously agreed format (i.e. CVS, SVN, etc) so that the authors can track down their improvements.

Ta-da!

Re:Another question (1)

Ulrich Hobelmann (861309) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510120)

Yes, WebCore is designed for Mac OS, and as such needs different code than KHTML. That's unfortunate, but mostly because the two systems are different.

OTOH this means that WebCore changes are hard to port to KHTML, but OTOH porting WebCore to GNUstep is easier, I suppose, since most Mac APIs are more or less the same there.

Re:Another question (2, Interesting)

CableModemSniper (556285) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510225)

OTOH this means that WebCore changes are hard to port to KHTML, but OTOH porting WebCore to GNUstep is easier, I suppose, since most Mac APIs are more or less the same there.

The Objective-C++ bits are actually making life difficult as far as a WebCore -> GNUstep port goes. Progress had gotten petty far but last I looked it wasn't really going anywhere. Browsing the CVS repository the most recent revisions are about 9 months old. On the plus side, when i tried it, it was pretty impressive. Drop a controller on a window in interface builder and write a line or two to send it to a page. it rendereed, clicking on links and stuff of that ilk tended to throw exceptions all over the place though.

Linky: https://gna.org/projects/gswebkit/ [gna.org]

Re:Another question (-1, Troll)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510168)

Some twit just wrote a blurb at apple. If it was anyone with any technical sense, they'd know that it was Objective C. C++ IS an objective language. Objective C is the abortion of a language that Apple uses all over the place.
It's sour grapes because the KDE/KHTML guys did a lot of work to let Apple have usable access to the code for KHTML, more than just a code dump, and then Apple does the opposite, which is a bare-minimum release of the code that's a pain in the ass to re-integrate because it's not even separate patches, it's one gigantorific patch that the KDE guys have to go through almost line by line to tell which parts will work and which won't.
Stop being an apologist. The KDE/KHTML guys aren't upset about the release of the code, either. They're just tired of everyone thinking Apple is some kind of benevolent group working with them for the betterment of the world, because they aren't. Apple is a corporation working to make money, period, and they aren't being overly generous or cooperative.

Re:Another question (3, Informative)

Refrag (145266) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510327)

...and Objective C++ is a framework Apple has for Objective C code interoperating with C++.
"KDE/KHTML guys did a lot of work to let Apple have usable access to the code for KHTML, more than just a code dump"
What work did they do? When Safari first came out the KHTML team didn't even know about it. Apple just grabbed the code and went to work, they didn't need any hand-holding from the KHTML guys.

Re:Another question (1)

Have Blue (616) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510380)

It's not a framework, it's a separate language in the compiler that allows mixed Objective-C and C++ syntax in source files. The two object models exist simultaneously when running. "Framework" has a specific meaning in OS X, more akin to a library than compiler feature or runtime. </pedantry>

Re:Another question (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510358)

If it was anyone with any technical sense, they'd know that it was Objective C. C++ IS an objective language. Objective C is the abortion of a language that Apple uses all over the place.

No, it is [apple.com] actually Objective C++ [apple.com] , not Objective C.

It's sour grapes because the KDE/KHTML guys did a lot of work to let Apple have usable access to the code for KHTML

The first the KHTML developers knew of Apple's adoption of KHTML was after they'd already developed Safari, when they posted to the mailing list.

People, stop modding this clueless drivel up. He doesn't know what he is talking about.

Re:Another question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510186)



Agreed.

One might assume that much of the point of open source, "free" software is that it self-consciously denies the quaint concepts of intention or control.

The point that Stallman and others have been making for years is, essentially: "Freeing your code is better for software as a whole." Or to put that another way, "We used to just share as a matter of course... What happened?"

In the end, it's not about the petty egos of individuals, but about the benefits it provides to the entire ecosystem.

off topic musing... (1)

circusboy (580130) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510261)

an "egosystem" perhaps...

quick someone else use it so we can send ot to the OED (if it's not already there...)

khtml guys *changed* the license for Apple bsd=:-( (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510222)

At the request of Apple the license was changed to allow them to integrate it into their proprietory software. See this discussion [blog-city.com] . Unfortunately they didn't forsee that Apple would obfuscate their patches by merging them into mega-patches.

why this dupe? (-1, Redundant)

diegocgteleline.es (653730) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510047)

We've previously reported on the frustration in the OSS community on this issue.

Then why is slashdot reporting *twice*? Dupes are normal in slashdot, but acknowledged dupes are insane

But was it really a dupe? (1)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510089)

"Then why is slashdot reporting *twice*? Dupes are normal in slashdot, but acknowledged dupes are insane"

Is every story on the iPod a dupe since we've already had one? Every story on the new Dr Who TV show a dupe, since we've already had one???

Re:why this dupe? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510226)

Hi, just because you refresh the slashdot page 40 times a day and never miss a post doesn't mean everyone does.

It's the way news works, get used to it.

Re:why this dupe? (0)

EraserMouseMan (847479) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510248)

Dupes are bad when they speak ill of Apple or OSS. Dupes are good when they speak of the evils of MS or how wonderful Apple and OSS are.

Re:why this dupe? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510284)

No, what's insane is to expect that Slashdot only post a story once-and only once, never to revisit the topic again, lest some asswipe complain about dupes!

p.s.

Complaining about dupes is so fucking redundant.

OS Divergence (4, Insightful)

Veinor (871770) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510053)

Open Source is designed so that everyone can see the code. If you can see the code, then you should be able to tweak it and make your own version of it, as long as you still give credit where it's due. Indeed, look at all the variations on *nix/Linux:
  • Suse
  • RedHat
  • *BSD
  • Knoppix
  • Mandrake
And there are definitely more that I haven't included. If Safari diverges form KHTML, it's fine with me.

Re:OS Divergence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510157)

AFAIK, Suse, RedHat and Mandrake have hardly altered any code in their distribution, just packaged the kernel with certain branches, a variety of software and each written a system configuration tool for their respective distributions. I am sure however, that at least RedHat has contributed significant code to the kernel.

Safari on Windows? (4, Interesting)

promantek (866291) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510056)

In the article, Apple engineer Maciej Stachowiak said,
"One thing you may want to consider eventually is back-porting (WebCore) to work on top of (KDE)... We'd be open to making our tree multi-platform."

I wonder if that means they are looking to port Safari to Windows. It would give Windows users another taste of the Mac, and I for one would use it.

YES BECAUSE THAT WOULD MAKE LOTS OF SENSE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510087)

"Here you go, dudes, here's the best parts of our OS. No, don't buy our hardware or anything, just run our stuff on Windows."

Re:YES BECAUSE THAT WOULD MAKE LOTS OF SENSE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510122)

If you think Safari is the best thing about OS X, you must have never used OS X! :)

Re:Safari on Windows? (1)

jmony (245233) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510153)

Actually, porting the HTML engine doesn't mean porting the browser. And cross-platform doesn't imply Windows... it might be *nix.

Um (4, Insightful)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510066)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

It's not unrealized, lots of projects have forked before. I think anybody who puts their code under a license that allows forking will realize that it can happen.

Can OSS code and goals harmonize with the goals and needs of corporation designed code?

Of course it can, this happens every day. Look at the kernel, GCC, Wine, etc.

Is it that Apple mismanaged the relationship, or that the KHTML guys expected too much?

I don't think expecting documented patches or a shared bug tracker is asking too much - this is the pretty much the minimal level of co-operation most projects would expect from a corporate good citizen. Some companies go even further than that, and hire some of the core developers, sponsor conferences, provide hosting facilities etc. There are plenty of examples in the Linux community of companies doing that.

So did Apple mismanage the relationship? Arguably there is no relationship. They certainly mismanaged expectations - if they'd come straight out and the beginning and said "we're not going to co-operate" a lot of frustration would have been avoided. That would have harmed their (mostly imaginary) pro-open source image though.

I doubt there's some kind of Evil Plan to screw over KDE here, it's more likely that Apple don't care or want to help the open source community, it's just a convenient place to take code from (go see how much FreeBSD has got back from them, for instance). Open source and Linux specifically are primary competitors and they'd be foolish to help the community more than they have to. After all, they're in the business of selling proprietary operating systems.

Re:Um (4, Insightful)

danigiri (310827) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510196)

"After all, they're in the business of selling proprietary operating systems."

No, really. They don't. They're in the business of selling computers and peripherals.

Having those computers and peripherals work well (or at least up to their expectations) incidentally needs of propietary operating systems.

Dani++

PS: look on the changelog of Bash, recently there has been some significant Apple contributions, reported on /., even.

Re:Um (2, Insightful)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510313)

Uh, that's a totally unsupported assertion. You don't "need" a proprietary operating system to be easy to use any more than you need a proprietary operating system to be secure or stable. That's bullshit.

Apple definitely are in the business of selling operating systems, it just so happens that you have to buy their hardware to get it. How many people buy a Mac because of MacOS? Look at their website, the number of pages dedicated to the OS vs the hardware is huge. Why do you think they generate such absurd amounts of hype over new OS features like desktop widgets?

It's pretty simple:

  • They make a proprietary OS because that's what they've always done, and because it fuels hardware sales
  • Therefore they have a vested interest in not seeing competing operating systems succeed.
  • Therefore they see open source projects as a useful source of code to use, but not a community they would be involved with. Their own engineers have flat out admitted this.

Re:Um (1)

shotfeel (235240) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510411)

It's not unrealized, lots of projects have forked before.

And more often than not, seems to lead to one group feeling betrayed.

Nothing more than a fork? (1)

cyngus (753668) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510067)

Does this really amount to anything more than a fork? I mean, it isn't as if there's never been an open source project that has been forked against the will of the original founders of the project. Does the forking by a company automatically make the fork bad? What if Google forked a project against the desire of the founder or "community"?

Here's a quote from Zack Rusin (4, Interesting)

Lars T. (470328) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510074)

he made after his rant.
Did KHTML become better as a result of Apple using it? Yes of course. KHTML became a lot, lot better as a result of patches we merged from Apple folks.

Re:Here's a quote from Zack Rusin (4, Insightful)

Elwood P Dowd (16933) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510276)

And even during his rant:
They do the very, very minimum required by LGPL.

And you know what? That's their right. They made a conscious decision about not working with KDE developers. All I'm asking for is that all the clueless people stop talking about the cooperation between Safari/Konqueror developers and how great it is.
So really, the only people they were ever particularly annoyed with were us. Here on Slashdot.

Re:Here's a quote from Zack Rusin (4, Informative)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510357)

You're quoting Zack out of context. Here is the full quote [64.233.183.104] :

Did KHTML become better as a result of Apple using it? Yes of course. KHTML became a lot, lot better as a result of patches we merged from Apple folks. And you know what? We've been quiet for almost two years. No one mentioned anything because we all hoped. We still do and always will. Everytime people complained about KDE developers being lazy and not merging patches from the great Apple guys we just took it. This time I simply refused to sit back and look at another /. discussion on Safari and KHTML cooperation.

Seems people like you are what Zak is pissed off about.

Typical (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510075)

Apple is kicking 4ss, C|Net brings them down. This is a weekly occurrance. I wouldn't even bother to post such drivel.

Re:Typical (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510181)

Drivel? Is it wrong to raise a valid argument regarding Apple? There IS discontent in the OSS community regarding Apple. Apple may have stuck to the letter of all licemses, however, the spirit isn't there.

Just because it is Apple & isn't MS, doesn't mean that a critical view of a big company raping OSS is OK.

Ultimate Question (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510088)

Oh! The Agony for the typical Slashdotter!

Its Apple vs OSS!!! Whom to support? Whom to deride??

Ofcourse, things coluld have been more agonizing if it had been Google vs Apple vs OSS.

Will all the /.tters realize that Apple is just raping the OSS community. They did it with FreeBSD & now with KHTML.

I'd like to REALLY see some Apple fanboy defend this raping of OSS by Apple.

Obviously! (4, Funny)

sammykrupa (828537) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510094)

Obviously Apple is not sharing there code! Slashdot looks great in Safari!

This sounds normal (3, Informative)

TimmyDee (713324) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510095)

How is this different from any other OSS project? Two groups see the project going in two different directions and it forks. Granted, the Apple side on this one may not be as open as the KHTML people want, but in all honesty, I'm willing to bet that Apple has a much better code base than KDE at this point. The fact that Apple is suggesting a KDE backport of WebCore is pretty amazing. How many corporations do we see telling an OSS group, "Why don't you just take our code and use it for your project whole-hog"? My guess is not many.

It's not like (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510098)

they suddenly turned into closed source.
So why is this a bad thing?

In fact, that is one of the points of OSS, isn't it?

There is always the possibility that somebody will fork, and the fork is still OSS as far as I know, so there is nothing wrong with interchanging code.

Typical for Apple in the FOSS world (1, Troll)

multipart (732754) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510099)

Apple is just a lousy company to co-operate with in an open source project. It is interesting that the KDE people mention that the fixes from Apple are more like hacks that break other things. This is _exactly_ the same as what happens with GCC. Always quick hacks to pass some benchmark or validation suite, or to paper over real bugs in dreadful ways. Never any real, constructive co-operation. Somehow, Apple appears to be unable to work with a community, instead of against it.

Re:Typical for Apple in the FOSS world (1)

pomo monster (873962) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510323)

"Apple is just a lousy company to co-operate with . . . Somehow, Apple appears to be unable to work with a community"

In that case, they'll fit right in with FOSS advocates the likes of RMS, ESR, and their hordes of cultish followers. So what's the problem?

Re:Typical for Apple in the FOSS world (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510324)

Boy, isn't it fun to be a teenage open source zealot who 'hates teh Apple'

Read the article and know what is going on. (5, Informative)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510334)

First off, I do KDE work, not Apple.
KHTML is under LGPL. Apple is doing what they are required. In addition, they have offered to move their code base to be multi-pltform. In the end, I think that the KHTML team will move towards this. It will allow full time developers on an import piece of work.

The article is doing a disservice.

Re:Typical for Apple in the FOSS world (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510356)

You poor soul. The Apple fanboys are going to mod your post into the lowest pit of hell for saying that. Because, you know, modding people down on Slashdot that have a dissenting opinion is going to silence them and convince the fence-sitters that their modded up point of view is the proper one, thereby winning more people to their side. This ignores the fact that we're here to discuss, not convince.

And this, too, will be modded into oblivion. Oh well. I'm posting AC anyway.

You what's strange? For all the Apple zealotry, Microsoft will still sell more versions of their 5-year old operating system this year than Apple will sell computers. If Apple was so wonderful, more people would buy it, not just the people who like to publicly justify the actions of an unconscionable corporation that has proven time and time again that it doesn't care about its users, so long as they keep buying Apple's overpriced, overstyled, proprietary snobmachines.

Open Source Is A License (5, Insightful)

American AC in Paris (230456) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510101)

Folks, if you want your code used in a certain way, you put the terms in the damned license. That's what it's there for.

Besides, last I checked, the KHTML folks don't have a beef with Apple. They do have a beef with the fanbois who can't seem to grasp the fact that Apple using KHTML's Open Source code does not immediately mean that they're best buddies.

All it means is that Apple is using Open Source code. Period. Apple isn't violating anybody's trust.

Let me see... (1)

killmenow (184444) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510103)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

Only if you're a moron. Everybody understands OSS is subject to forking. It's been used as FUD against it. But the fact is, it's just the market at work. If others take a project in a direction you didn't intend...so what? You released it in a way that allowed that to happen. If you don't want that to happen, pick a different license.

Can OSS code and goals harmonize with the goals and needs of corporation designed code?

Duh. Of course. Do I really need to provide a list? Can't anybody here on /. think for half a second and come up with one or two OSS projects sponsored by corporations where the code and goals are "harmonized" as the questioner puts it?

Is it that Apple mismanaged the relationship, or that the KHTML guys expected too much?

How about both?

Re:Let me see... (2, Insightful)

DogDude (805747) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510207)

Duh. Of course. Do I really need to provide a list? Can't anybody here on /. think for half a second and come up with one or two OSS projects sponsored by corporations where the code and goals are "harmonized" as the questioner puts it?

Yeah, I'd like to hear about one or two projects like that. I'm not aware of any.

Re:Let me see... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510299)


Duh. Of course. Do I really need to provide a list? Can't anybody here on /. think for half a second and come up with one or two OSS projects sponsored by corporations where the code and goals are "harmonized" as the questioner puts it?

Yeah, I'd like to hear about one or two projects like that. I'm not aware of any.


SCO Linux?

Safari != KHTML (2, Insightful)

bunburyist (664958) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510135)

Its probably best to think of Apple's WebCore as a fork of KHTML; they are no longer one and the same. Apple has already changed WebCore enough that backporting changes to KHTML is very non-trivial. As usual, they are starved for developers, especially when the task is simply porting someone else's code, rather than solving problems for yourself. Many devs would much rather do the latter, even if "results" come more slowly.

Does KDE Have a Green Theme? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510137)

Just in case you Linux assholes are too stupid, the "green" theme was a reference to jealousy, and that's exactly what this issue is about; jealousy.

Honestly, it looks like the KHTML folks on the KDE team are just jealous. Safari is a better browser than KDE could ever put out (actually, ANYTHING is better than Konqueror, as Konqueror sucks ass) and they're whining about it. "Boo hoo, Apple isn't helping us out any," they whine.

It seems to me from a previous post that most of the changes Apple has made are available on their website, so what the hell are they bitching about? They didn't ask for your help to merge KHTML into their Objective-C-centric APIs, so maybe they should shut the fuck up and do some of the merging work themselves instead of complaining about Apple's lack of cooperation.

This is yet another reason (as if there weren't enough already) why the free software fad needs a reality check. If someone is abiding by the rules (as Apple is), maybe you should just shut the fuck up about the fact that they're not open enough for you.

-- repruhsent
-- posted AC because of oppression by the Slushgut groupthink mods.

This is just stupid (5, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510144)

The original story just had Zach Rusin saying that Apple's contributions to KHTML were exaggerated. OK, fine.

This stuff is just stupid. Apple has done absolutely nothing illegal; arguably they've done nothing inappropriate. KDE and KHTML are not in any way any less well-off, and if this story accurately reflects the attitude of the primary KHTML developers, honestly, they're being jackasses.

What all this demonstrates is why using free code (especially GPL/LGPL code) is much more of a minefield than a reading of the license would suggest. You can comply to every last detail, and it doesn't do you any good against the negative publicity when someone decides you "owe something to the community".

Unrealized Goals (2, Insightful)

jaylee7877 (665673) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510149)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

This is not a danger, it's simply a attribute of OSS. Do you really think Linus sat down to write the kernel and ever considered it'd be used on millions of computers worldwide for mission critical systems? When you release your code Open Source, your basically saying to the world "do with it as you please". Some license clauses may prevent certain uses (i.e. many OSS SMTP Servers have a clause that says if you use this software for Spam, you're in violation of the license). But as a OSS Developer I can't say that only Americans can use my code, or prevent those of other religions from using it to benefit their religion. And I certainly can't prevent some company from "leeching" by profiting from my work without giving back equally to the OSS community. That's life and that's OSS. Most companies however realize that as a whole, you get back what you put into something.

mooohahahaha! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510322)

"millions of computers worldwide for mission critical systems?"

ha! funny. that's a good one.

Freedom (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510155)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

Yes if you license it in that way. This is the very spirit of OSS. Others can do as they please with your copyrighted works under limitations and freedoms as set forth in your licensing agreement. You can do the same. But back to your question, they can take it in a direction you didn't intend but that does not prevent you from continuing in your intended direction. May the best man win. Survival of the fittest. And that's the best part IMNSHO

This is ridiculous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510158)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

That's the whole point of OSS! They're just being babies about it because Apple is "following the spirit" of the license.

Ridiculous.

Re:This is ridiculous (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510201)


...isn't "following the spirit"...

This is just the market at work ... (1)

El Cubano (631386) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510169)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend? Can OSS code and goals harmonize with the goals and needs of corporation designed code? Is it that Apple mismanaged the relationship, or that the KHTML guys expected too much? Interesting warning for other OSS-corporate marriages.

There is always a danger that someone will fork your code. That being said, Apple must perceive sufficient commercial advantage to maintaining their own fork.

People don't realize that many contributions to OSS projects by businesses (particular projects that allow commercial closed source derivatives, e.g., Apache, PHP, BSD) are not motivated by altruism, but by a cost benefit analysis. If it will cost them more to maintain their forked version than they will gain from it, then they are hurting themselves in the marketplace. If they can get the project to accept their changes, then the next version will already have their changes and they don't need to cross/backport the code.

Nothing to see here... It's just a fork (5, Insightful)

Jarnis (266190) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510171)

Apple has followed the obligation of the license.

It's just a fork. Forks happen. Move along. If KDE guys think KHTML sucks compared to WebCore/Safari, they are free to fork THAT and start from there (backporting it to KDE). The source is open. Whine less, code more :)

Free donuts (3, Insightful)

flaming-opus (8186) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510277)

you can't put donuts on the table in the break room and then complain when someone eats them.

Complaining about it shows a great lack of grace.

Re:Free donuts (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510368)

If I see someone eating my donuts I put in break room, I'll bring Krispy Kreme next time...& then lock the restrooms....

That'll teach those bastards....

It's called a fork stupid. (2, Insightful)

gr8_phk (621180) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510179)

"Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?"

If you didn't realize that's possible, you're just being stupid. If they're going in a direction you don't intend, then by all means continue in the direction you DO intend and don't worry about it. Would it be nice if Apple maintained a set of OSX specific patches and did as much as possible in the upstream project? Yes. Do they have to? No. Will it bite them in the future? Perhaps. The farther they diverge, the harder it will be to bring changes the other direction as well.

Which one should we go for? (0, Flamebait)

Swamii (594522) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510184)

Hello Slashdot editors and fellow Slashdotters,

I am fine, how are you? Hope you are doing well.

Pardon my curiousity, but I would like to know what is the official /. position on this particular topic? I would like to think everything related to OSS is in the right, and corporations are always wrong, but I have a predicament. We always let Apple slide on things like vendor lock-in and other topics other ideas we hammer other corporations for.

I'm just not sure who I should be rooting for! Please help! Respond to this soon, as my head is hurting from trying to decide on my own, I need you to make up my mind for me.

Thank you Slashdotters and Slashdot editors,

Sincerely,
Gabriel

Re:Which one should we go for? (0, Troll)

m50d (797211) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510290)

Apple, of course. It being apple trumps DMCA, illegal abuse of monopolies, being anti-hacker, and so on, which we know outweigh open source.

It does not matter at all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510198)

It does not matter at all how a company use your code or if a firm contributes actively to the developpement of the code.

When you start an open source project you don't expect that comercial companies will help you.

You start an open source project because you want it, because you love that stuff.

Has Apple never used this code base for its browser, the situation would be no different: the project can only count on itself.

The project doesn't depend on comercial firm input !

Be happy and code !

Hidden Danger of OSS? (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510214)

Come on, you have to be kidding.

If you release code for people to see, they do what they want. If you dont know that upfront then you are a moron.

Childish Spat (5, Insightful)

cyberlotnet (182742) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510216)

This is nothing but a childish spat between 2 diffrent groups of developers.

Apple published the patches, and changes and KHTML cries about them having to much OSX specific code in them? Thats just crap..

Apple is acting in good faith, they are basically asking Apple to make sure all patches are 100% compatible with the current code base.

The KHTML team might as well just ask Apple to take over the project in full.

Open Source does not mean "Anything you do must conform and work with our project or your not doing it right"

Open Source is "If you make changes please give back to the community with the understanding that your changes might not be compatible with ours, Your code changes may not be what we want, but we can't complain about that"

what is Microsoft had done the same (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510223)

I hear half of u guys defending Apple.

I am wondering what these guys would have said if MS had done the same.

new here, but... (4, Interesting)

greystreets (581356) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510231)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

Isn't that point of OSS, hoping that someone will take interest in your project and do something with it you couldn't do yourself?

And what's dangerous about that?

Gimme a break (2, Insightful)

learn fast (824724) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510234)

Is an unrealized danger of OSS that others may take your project in a direction you didn't intend?

Oh come on, is this really a "danger"? Nothing in any open source license says that you keep the right to direction of whatever your code ends up as.

This is like the "danger" that your source code can be "hijacked" in commercial applications if you use the BSD license.

KHTML is not objectively any worse off because of this... Apple isn't hurting them, Apple isn't taking anything away from them, their project is not imperiled in any way. It may make them feel bad that their source is out there with improvements and it's not as easy for them to merge them back into KHTML as they would like. It's quite a mental exercise to try to think of a rational justification for that feeling without becoming extremely vague (try it), one which no open source license could ever protect them.

To borrow a phrase from ABC News' mustachioed libertarian: Gimme a break.

can't you just feel all the fan boys flailing (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510241)

been reading the mod'd responses

boy, sure a lot of apologists

what is it with apple, that you'll excuse them

despite the fact they act immorally

look, yes they can go their own way

and yes, they've legally complied

but no, they aren't playing well with others

they, the money men, are just using us

so, hey, we're unhappy ... see?

Re:can't you just feel all the fan boys flailing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510342)

boy, sure a lot of apologists

Don't call people apologists. It shows you're strongly prejudiced and that means you're trolling.

KHTML Developers Assumed Too Much (3, Insightful)

mgbaron (457884) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510250)

I think Apple made a decision that it needed to switch cores and at that moment has every right to do so and never look back. The fact that they are putting any effort into KHTML at all should be looked at as a mere bonus for the KTHML developers at this point. Apple never claimed to be the white night funding the KHTML project or that they would be the dominant developer for the future. This is not an example of IBM taking over a project. I think some KHTML guys read way too much into this relationship. It was pretty clear from the start that they were being used (but the nature of their license allows for this). It was great that they showed trust and attempted to built a relationship, but they should not have become in anyway dependent. I'm not saying this is the case, but the bitterness of their response seems to suggst this sort of dependence.

What else do you expect? (0, Redundant)

leereyno (32197) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510271)

Apple has a long, long history of acting irrationally, often to the point of blowing its own foot off and snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. They have a knack for choosing a course that is not in the interest of their customers, yet not in their own interest either.

Involving them in a project in a non-essential role is probably about the only way you can involve them at all. To rely upon them is to court disaster.

Lee

Sound like KHTML team doesn't want to play either (3, Insightful)

MoneyT (548795) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510272)

"One thing you may want to consider eventually is back-porting (WebCore) to work on top of (KDE), and merging your changes into that," Apple engineer Maciej Stachowiak wrote in an e-mail dated May 5. "I think the Apple trees have seen a lot more change since the two trees diverged, although both have useful changes. We'd be open to making our tree multi-platform."

The suggestion, which KHTML developers said they were unlikely to accept,


So Apple is open to making the tree cross platform, and presumeably to them back porting web core (which is nessesary to implement some of the things Apple has done since) and KHTML doesn't want to.

So by choice KHTML has already limited the changes they can use.

"In open source, everything's supposed to be done the right way, but sometimes the less correct way is faster," Rusin said. "In fixing one problem, they were breaking a whole bunch of other things. Apple developers were focused on fixing bugs in such a way that we could not merge them back into KHTML. Those fixes were never an option for us."

Ignoring for a moment the fact that OSS is not done the "right way" many times, Apple has an obligation to turn out code and to do it fast. They have obligations to their customers. The fact that KHTML wants to take their sweet time and Apple wants to get the patches done fast and out the door shows where the divergence is. Apple can't afford to take the open source approach of spending 5 years in beta before releasing the next version.

Once again a choice by KHTML. The patches are there, but they choose to do the patches their way, thus eliminating Apple patches.

KDE volunteers said they suddenly found themselves dealing with bug reports Apple deemed too sensitive to share, new requirements for auditing code before releasing it, and demands that developers sign nondisclosure agreements before looking at some Apple code.

So you mean once KHTML devs wanted access to code that wasn't part of KHTML, they had to play by Apple's rules? Say it isn't so! Apple plays by their rules for their code, but KHTML doesn't want to play by Apple's rules for Apple code. Again, choices by KHTML to limit their own options.

"As long as they needed us, they used us, but when they gained enough knowledge they had no reason to keep sending us reviews and patches," Rusin said. "At a certain point they decided it was a waste of time for them, and at that point the communication just stopped...We had hopes that they would pour resources into KHTML. But that never happened."

No, it did happen, but they're pouring resources in to the ways that allow them to serve their customers best too, and that means leveraging OS X technologies. KHTML has chosen to be just as uncooperative as Apple.

No, Zonk, you did not "report" on anything... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510285)

you merely linked. There's a difference: one involves actually talking to people and leaving your momma's basement.

"We've previously reported on the frustration in the OSS community on this issue."

forget safari or khtml (0, Offtopic)

jlebrech (810586) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510292)

use camino.

Nothing wrong with this... (3, Informative)

Port-0 (301613) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510293)

Apple hasn't done anything wrong. This is exactly the way OSS is set up to work. If someone made some software and you want to change it, you are free to do so. As long as you publish the changes. There is no rule you have to do it in a way that makes the original author happy, you aren't required to follow their vision. You are free from all that. If the original author likes what you've done, they should be able to take your work and merge it back in.

It's nice when everyone cooperates with each other, and keeps everything syncronized, but all that is frosting on the cake.

I see nothing wrong with it (1, Offtopic)

bogie (31020) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510306)

There is no clause about having to spoon feed your patches back into the project you took your code from.

And in fairness to Apple I don't see as nearly as many articles from them saying how "well they work with OSS" vs articles complaining that they don't work well with OSS from OSS users.

That said I do wish Apple zealots would stop raving about how well Apple does play with OSS. They IMHO are the root cause of all of the bad will. If they would just shut the hell up then we could look at Apple as what they are, a passive OSS user. Instead everyone yelling about how they don't play nice. Yes Apple doesn't help out with OSS as much as we'd all like, surprise. Let's move on and spend our time talking about the companies that do help.

OSS project mantra (3, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 9 years ago | (#12510338)

How many times have you filed a RFE on an OSS project and gotten this back? "If you don't like how that works, feel free to submit a patch".

Okay, if you don't like how Apple provides its patches back to the KHTML guys, please feel free to write a tool that converts their patches into the form you prefer.

mod doW8 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12510345)

It has to be fun of HIV and othe8 some intelligent Backward and said megs of ram runs
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