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Re: Release plans

From: René Kyllingstad
Subject: Re: Release plans
Date: Tue, 19 Aug 2008 15:28:59 -0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.2 (windows-nt)

* Richard M. Stallman:
>      If the free and non-free software worlds are regarded as
>      opposing armies, the GNU army's choice is to either inflict a
>      loss on both sides (no dynamic loader -- the defeatist strategy)
>      or afford both sides a possible win (possible free and non-free
>      add-ons).
>  A win for non-free software is ipso facto a loss for our campaign to
>  eliminate non-free software.  When the non-free software in question
>  is an add-on for a free program, it tends to pervert the liberating
>  nature and message of that free program; that is another kind of loss
>  for us.  These are the potential kinds of harm that I am concerned to
>  avert.
>  Our community develops lots of free software, but which software it
>  develops is a matter of what many people are inspired to do.
>  We cannot count on the community to develop a free equivalent
>  of a nasty Emacs add-on in a short time, not if it is nontrivial.

I'd like to get your comment on another side of this:

One problem the free software community is struggling with is
funding. Developing new software is time consuming.  It's made even harder
if a team is not working together in the same building, and only part-time.

If a company would put a lot of effort into creating a non-free Emacs
plug-in, the effort of coming up with the idea and finding out exactly how
it should work would be paid for by them.

Then it's a much easier job for the free software community to organize an
effort to implement the missing parts as free software, since it's clear to
everyone exactly what kind of features are being discussed.

It's hardly a new argument, I just haven't seen anyone acknowledging it in
this thread, and funding of free software is also a topic that interests me
very much.

-- René

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