BitKeeper licence critic / Indirect locking to a non-free tool

M E Leypold @ labnet leypold at
Sat Mar 9 20:01:00 UTC 2002

Jeroen Dekkers writes:

 > And what if Linus likes BK and just doesn't release prepatches anymore
 > and just refers to the BK repository?

If this ever happens and if it becomes a real problem for more than
1 competent developer, the Linux development will fork. As it always
happened with *real* free software. 

 > > Going against linux people for using BK is like going against all
 > > free software developers that use source forge, or use vi, or use mozilla,
 > > or do cross development to non free OS. It's just irracional...

To the previous poster: I'd strongly advice not to use non-free
development software to do some real free work. That creates
dependencies, which will get you sooner or later, but I also would
vote for respecting other peoples decisions here.

To explain: If I see a project X using a non-free tool T and I would
like to fix, maintain or extend X myself (even if only internally),
and would discover I needed T for that, I would avoid to rely on X
(that is: depend on it), since I'd have an indirect lock into the tool
T. If the authors of X don't see that as a problem + it doesn't damage
the popularity of their project, than everything is Ok for them
(though I -- presonally -- would still try to avoid the project).

 > I go against all free software developers wanting to use
 > sourceforgetit already, saying that savannah is really a better

Certainly. But you can't force people, only convince them. Your
not-so-diplomatic approach isn't working too well presently, since it
isn't enough to be RIGHT. You're talking to people who insist on their
freedom, remember? :-)

 > option. According to my knowledge vi (at least some implementations)
 > and mozilla are free.
 > Free software developers shouldn't use non-free software and promote
 > free software IMHO.

Would have been better to give a non-dogmatic reasoning for that. I
just tried, hope that is understandable.

 > > The Linux Kernel is still Free Software, has always been and I can se no
 > > reason for not staying that way just because some of the developers started
 > > using BK...
 > My biggest reasons for not staying with Linux are technical.

And it's also badd to change arguments midflight.

Regards -- Markus

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