[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [GNU-linux-libre] MAME emulator is giving incentive to use non-free

From: Isaac David
Subject: Re: [GNU-linux-libre] MAME emulator is giving incentive to use non-free software
Date: Wed, 30 Mar 2016 16:30:17 -0600


Parabola does ship fully free emulators for which no free games
exist. At this moment the user has to opt-in for installing
your-freedom_emu to block those packages, so it actually falls
down somewhere between your "liberal" and "extremely liberal"

My view was that while useless in a 100% free environment just
having them installed and inspecting their user interfaces wouldn't
violate your freedom in any way. A free emulator with free
dependencies wouldn't be unethical unless it recommended using
proprietary software with it. However in the last few days I have
seen many arguments showing there are yet more valid uses I hadn't
imagined, like learning from the source code and testing portability
without leaving your comfy libre OS.

In a distro without unprivileged package management like Parabola
an opt-in blacklist could satisfy Jean Louis' parenting concerns, but
only until the point the unprivileged users determined to run non-free
software learn to look for applications outside the package manager.

(I lied. Parabola has unprivileged package management thanks to

Meanwhile other emulators and wine are completely out of the
question because there's free applications for them, even though
using the non-free ones is more common. Parabola documents emulators
extensively in a wiki page.[2] The wiki also considers aspects such
as the possibility of writing free software for free emulator
platforms which currently have no free games/applications as far as
it's known (i,e. whether free toolchains targeting those platforms
exist). I also had a good laugh learning about free emulators that
will only run on wine.


Le mar. 29 mars 2016 à 10:31, alírio eyng <address@hidden> a écrit :
these are the approaches i can think:
*extremely conservative (eliminating false positive errors)[1]
 removing all emulators
*conservative (eliminating false positive errors)[1]
 make packages/executables like game1-emulator1, game1-emulator2, ...
and not allowing direct emulator installation/execution
*liberal (avoiding false positive errors[1] and false negative errors[2])
 allowing all emulators with free games know
*extremely liberal (eliminating false negative errors)[2]
 allowing all emulators

extremely liberal is naive because it just looks down in the
dependency dag, there's no reason to not look up
extremely conservative is naive because it doesn't allow completely free uses
conservative would solve the issues that originate this thread
liberal is more convenient in some cases

i consider conservative better, liberal ok, and any of the extremes unreasonable

fsdg doesn't allow extremely liberal (according to other people
interpretation), in ndiswrapper, for example:
"with one exception, all ndis drivers are nonfree--and the one free
one is a windows port of a native linux driver. so right now, this
isn't useful for anything besides using nonfree software"[3]

parabola follows extremely conservative with your-freedom_emu[4]

assuming we choose conservative; for wine, we can make guile-wine,
emacs-wine[5] and gnutls-wine[6], but remove wine

it seems there's at least one free game needing an emulator[7]

i think this is a discussion about fsdg[8] and we should discuss it at


reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]