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SubjectRe: Why is Nvidia given GPL'd code to use in non-free drivers?
On Sat, Jan 04, 2003 at 06:44:38PM -0500, Richard Stallman wrote:
> I have the freedom to use Linux and ClearCase. If closed source modules
> were to be disallowed, it would be illegal for me to use this
> configuration, and I would be forced to use HP-UX or Solaris, and
> not Linux.
> You can't have freedom while using ClearCase, because it is non-free
> software. What we really need is a free replacement for it. Will
> people write one? Our main influence on whether people do this is by
> what we say. A strong Free Software Movement will inspire more people
> to reject non-free software and write free replacements.

In the *mean time*, I need a practical response, and not a claim that
'in a more perfect world, such and such'. If binary-only modules are
illegal, then I lose the freedom to legally use Linux + ClearCase MVFS.

You attach the word freedom to everything that suits your own political
agenda, but you refuse to allow me to use the word freedom in the above
context? Do you have a trademark on the word freedom?

> All else being equal, I'm glad that you use a variant of the GNU
> system, but what system you use is not really important except to you.
> If you used HP-UX or Solaris, it would be your loss, not our
> community's loss. Spurring the broader development of free software
> should be higher priority than keeping you as a user.

The point where you are wrong, is that if I found it inconvenient to use
Linux, because I was not free to make use of closed source products, or
kernel modules as part of my operating environment, I would not be able
to contribute to Linux development. The point is more visible for those
in this mailing list who contribute a substantial amount.

> I'm saying that if you truly have a just cause, you don't need a hammer
> or a sickle to force people to see things your way. Intelligent people
> will have no choice but to follow your lead.
> Since our views have little in common with Communism, it is remarkable
> that our enemies sometimes call us Communists. Perhaps they do this
> because it is easier to attack Communism than confront our real views.

Actually I put the hammer/sickle reference above as an amusement, and
not a claim that you are communist. (Although -- as I understand it, the
more perfect society that would allow GPL to thrive *is* a communist
society -- which would be wonderful, if such a political system could
be proven to be feasible)

> Visionaries should have faith in their own vision.
> Real visionaries know that just having a vision does not change
> society. Sustained effort is necessary.

Traditional (not *REAL*) visionaries that have incomplete visions, where
the vision cannot be easily transferred from person to person without
mutating, or losing its scope, are forced to sustain their efforts as
a physical effort.

*REAL* visions are like viruses. All you need to do is transfer the vision
from one person to the next, and each time the image is transferred, the
next person takes up the cross as their own, with all of the energy and
motivation that the original visionary possessed.

You don't need to threaten people, or demean their methods in order to
propagate a *REAL* vision. Transfer of the vision is all that is necessary.
The people will see the light.


-- __________________________
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| | | | | \ | \ |__ . | | .|. |__ |__ | \ |__ | Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

One ring to rule them all, one ring to find them, one ring to bring them all
and in the darkness bind them...

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