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Re: Emacs contributions, C and Lisp

From: Richard Stallman
Subject: Re: Emacs contributions, C and Lisp
Date: Mon, 10 Mar 2014 15:08:09 -0400

[[[ To any NSA and FBI agents reading my email: please consider    ]]]
[[[ whether defending the US Constitution against all enemies,     ]]]
[[[ foreign or domestic, requires you to follow Snowden's example. ]]]

I am not going to change my decision because of minor bad consequences
or apparent inconsistencies, because those are less important than
the what the decision aims to achieve.

Maybe it is possible to improve some details of the decision.  If so,
I don't reject that out of hand.  However, I am going to think long
and hard to make sure a proposed change does not reintroduce the
problem I am trying to exclude.

For instance, suppose a feature is implemented to use CEDET.  If so,
why would we want code to implement the same feature using Clang, even
as an option?  If no one would ever use that option, installing it is
a waste of time and a confusion for the users; we are better off
without it.  However, if there is a reason people might see an
advantage in using that option, evidently its use of Clang constitutes
a real problem.

Let's implement the change with CEDET, if that works well.
If it can work better using a real compiler, let's use GCC,
not Clang.

    unfair scenario for GCC because, contrary to Clang, it wasn't intended
    to provide those features,

The only sort of "fairness to GCC" that matters is to promote its use
now, so that it can promote copyleft on compilers now, so that it can
discourage nonfree compilers now.

                               and past attempts to steer its development
    towards those goals were rejected by the same person who now spurs them
    to match Clang's library-like features :-/

In the past, I made decisions so as to promote free compilers and
prevent nonfree compilers from displacing them.  I do that now, and
will do so in the future.  If the methods I use today differ from the
methods I used in the past, that should not be shocking.

The contrast between past and present policies, even if ironic,
tragic, or whatever, is no argument for anything.  Whenever two things
differ, an incomplete or misleading description of them can make that
difference look like a horrible "inconsistency" than absolutely must
be corrected.  One must learn to disregard that sort of argument when
it pops up.

I am not infallible, but that's no reason I should not do my best.  I
will continue to make decisions in accord with the goals of the GNU

Dr Richard Stallman
President, Free Software Foundation
51 Franklin St
Boston MA 02110
www.fsf.org  www.gnu.org
Skype: No way! That's nonfree (freedom-denying) software.
  Use Ekiga or an ordinary phone call.

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