Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton <> writes:

>  the FSF's position there covers *everyone else*, who, by definition,
> cannot trust or be trusted to follow explicit written or verbal
> instructions, cannot cope with a command-line prompt, cannot
> comprehend the consequences of their actions, does not understand or
> read "terms and conditions" and so on.

Right, so hardly Debian's target audience then.

It's all very well having something to cater to the non-technical folk,
and I applaud the effort, but you'll note that almost all of the "Libre"
OSs are actually Debian based, and if you made Debian unusable on most
of the hardware that Debian developers actually use (or are paid by
their employers to use) then all you'd do is make sure that they use
something else, so you wouldn't have the same mindshare in Debian, and
would end up with Debian being as poorly maintained as most of the
"libre" things you apparently wish we'd emulate.

The fact that some of the "libre" OSs base themselves on Ubuntu strikes
me as particularly deranged, given that Ubuntu is actually a step
further away from what they want, but there you go.

So, sure, use a Libre OS of you like the compromises they make, but be
aware that the main reason that you have the chance to do so is that
Debian has made different compromises in order to be popular enough to
be the default upstream for Linux, and thus has made it possible for
someone to create the Libre OS that you are running.

Giving us grief about ethics will not make things better for you.

When I got into Free Software, the way you ran things was to spend three
days recompiling GCC on your proprietary UNIX(TM) OS, followed by perl
etc. -- How useful would it have been to be purist about things then?

The place where one can draw the line has been slowly pushed towards the
hardware, but pretending that the masses are currently able or
interested in running on truly free hardware does not make it true. It
might even sabotage the effort to make it possible.  After all, most
people are firmly clutching their android devices, totally unaware that
there's Free software inside, without even a temptation to look under
the surface.

It seems to me that we're all progressing towards the same destination,
even if via slightly differing routes.  Reenacting "The Life of Brian's"
Splitters scene is just a way of not getting on with something useful
instead -- please give it a rest.

Cheers, Phil.
|)|  Philip Hands  [+44 (0)20 8530 9560]  HANDS.COM Ltd.
|(|  Hugo-Klemm-Strasse 34,   21075 Hamburg,    GERMANY

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: PGP signature

arm-netbook mailing list
Send large attachments to

Reply via email to