[Fsfe-ie] Patent letter #3

Ian Clarke ian at locut.us
Fri Jan 23 10:51:13 CET 2004

Ciaran O'Riordan wrote:
> Ian Clarke <ian at locut.us> writes:
>>Ciaran O'Riordan wrote:
>>>IFSO hasn't asked anyone to use google, or any other secret software, on
>>>their own machines, or over a network.
>>Sure you are, unless the BIOS of your web server is free software.
> This extrapolates to "You can't be perfect, why bother trying."

I am not sure whose standard of perfection you aspire to, but I don't 
think its that of the free software movement.

> I'd prefer an FS BIOS, but I don't see it as imperative.  One grey area
> is not a reason to accept other grey areas.

It isn't a grey area at all.  Free software requires the availability of 
source code to the persons running the binaries, it does not require the 
release of all source code ever written.  It is not immoral to keep a 
secret, unless the secret is what you are making another person's 
computer do.

>>In the case of 3D17.org, the binary stays on my server - the only part
>>of it that runs on the user's computer is the HTML it generates and
>>the user is free to look at its source code.
> IFSO will not ask you to run secret or proprietary software for us.

It isn't a secret from me, I have the source code.


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