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RE: [Axiom-developer] Aldor?

From: Bill Page
Subject: RE: [Axiom-developer] Aldor?
Date: Thu, 12 Jan 2006 21:38:49 -0500

On January 12, 2006 6:41 PM Frederic Lehobey wrote:
> > "Bill Page" <address@hidden> writes:
> ...
> > 
> > Yes! Please write to Steven Watt. I think it would definitely
> > help if it is clear to Steven that many people would like to
> > have Aldor open source. Maybe what we need is a kind of
> > "petition" that people could "sign" and email to him. I fear
> > that perhaps Steven does not take my claims that this is
> > desired by many people very seriously.
> I would never do such a thing.  I consider it harassment and
> very childish.

How odd that you think this way! How is someone like Steven Watt
to know that there are many people who are anxious to use his
work if we do not tell him? I do not consider it harrassment
that I have sent emails asking about the state of the plans
to make Aldor open source at the rate of about one 1 email/phone
call per month since September.

> I have the greatest respect (and recognition) for people
> contributing to free software by putting the software they have
> rights on under any free software license.  If Steven Watt belongs
> to such people is his own choice (if even he has such a choice)
> and I respect everybody's choice whatever is this choice.

Of course I agree 100% with you. I also have the greatest respect
for Steven Watt and the other developers of Aldor. I do respect
his choice. Already the binary version of Aldor is freely available.
This arrangement for Aldor was made more than 5 years ago at a
time before the concept of open source was well defined. I am quite
sure that that is the only reason why Aldor is not already open
source. I think what is left is only to over come the inertia of
making the necessary arrangements. No doubt this coupled with a
busy research schedule has not yet allowed anyone to given
priority to making the status of the Aldor source code clear.

> I am very sad for people from the Axiom community to give such a
> message as `we have such a good free software that we are willing
> to drop it for an other replacement, please open source this
> possible substitute'.

I think you do not understand. Aldor *is* (at least was) a part
of Axiom. It was designed as "version 2" of the Axiom library
compiler during the latter stages of Axiom research at IBM.
Steven Watt was one of the primary developers. When Axiom was
a commercial product sold by NAG, Aldor was included in the

When NAG discontinued the sale of Axiom, Aldor was the first part
of the system that was made publically available (in binary form)
through "" which as I understand it, was the initiative
of Steven Watt. At the time apparently no one wanted to take on
the responsibility for making the rest of Axiom available. It was
a few years later when Tim Daly made the necessary arrangements
to open source the rest of Axiom, but the previous arrangments for
the Aldor part were already in force.

So what we are really talking about is finding a way to re-unite
the two part of Axiom as a single open source project (or at least
two closely related open source projects).

> Thanks Tim and other contributors for the impressive work
> already achieved.  Keep up the good work and happy new year.
> Best regards,
> Frederic
> (Sorry if it sounds too harsh, I am not a native English speaker.)

Frederic, thank you for your comments. No, I do not think that
it sounds harsh. I am happy that you have expressed your opinions.

Bill Page.

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