Re: Intro to GNOME and the FSF

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"James M. Cape" <> writes:

> Yes, I am aware of that. I'm opposed to using GNOME-specific resources
> to fight GNU's fight. Let "GNU-proper"

If you read my mails carefully, I said:

"a simple paragraph, with links".

Do you consider that to fight GNU's fight??

I consider that to give credit to whom credit is due.

> Yes, I know what GNU means.

Pardon me, but after reading your answer entirely, I can assure that
you do NOT know what GNU means.

> Yes I know GNOME is part of GNU.
> However, I believe that only the GNOME cabal can speak to what GNOME's
> aim is.

If they aim is not to promote the use of Free Software over your
so-called "pragmatism" I can assure you that GNOME wouldn't be part of
the GNU Project.

When a software is part of the GNU project it doesn't mean that it has
the GPL and that's all, it needs a review session by RMS, and a group
of evaluators that give him a hand in checking the code,
documentation, licenses, etc. (I am part of that group, among other
tasks in the GNU Project).

> > > as it stands now, potentially leading them to believe
> > > that GNOME will not work on non-Linux Unix systems
> > 
> > huh?
> > 
> > Actually GNOME should work in the GNU System, not specifically a
> > GNU/Linux system.
> Well, there is no other "GNU system" being offered at the moment. Yes,
> yes, we've all heard about HURD, but in all honesty, that is not being
> promoted to the same degree that Linux is, which makes Linux the only
> serious choice right now for those not familiar with the entire
> situation.

Ok, so you define a GNU System as a kernel.

So, when HURD is ready, that will be the GNU System?

This confirms that you do NOT know what GNU means.

A GNU system is not only a kernel, it is not only a compiler, it is
all those things that make your work happen.


The GNU system is a complete free Unix-like operating system.

A Unix-like operating system consists of many programs. We have been
accumulating components for this system since 1984; the first test
release of a ``complete GNU system'' was in 1996. We hope that in a
year or so this system will be mature enough to recommend it for
ordinary users.

The GNU system includes all the GNU software, as well as many other
packages such as the X Window System and TeX which are not GNU
software.  Since the purpose of GNU is to be free, every single
component in the GNU system has to be free software. They don't all
have to be copylefted, however; any kind of free software is legally
suitable to include if it helps meet technical goals. We can and do
use non-copylefted free software such as the X Window System.


That's why RMS calls it GNU/Linux, he doesn't call it that way, just
because the idea crossed his mind.

Everything is explained in:

> See, I am dealing with conflicting aims here. One is that we should put
> a blurb in the help browser about GNU. Then there is the above.
> I think that Putting a "GNOME is a part of the GNU Project, which
> means..." paragraph in the "About GNOME" dialog is one thing (something
> I would support). "fight[ing] to promote the GNU Project" is quite
> another.

Read it again:

"a simple paragraph, with links to information"

> And as for the the unnamed "BIG companies", I believe the major reason
> is "they use gcc because it fulfills their needs" far more often than
> "they use it because they believe in the principles of the FSF".

I guess that is not true for 100% of the people, and even it that
amount of people is very little, that means that somebody is doing it
for the right reason.

> > Shouldn't it be more attractive a desktop that is portable, that means
> > that you can run it on your laptop (GNU/Linux), on your workstation
> > (HP-UX, Solaris, etc.), and even your servers.
> > 
> > GNU assures this portability.
> Well, I would credit GNOME with that portability, not GNU, just as I
> would credit the Apache people or the HURD people, or whoever else may
> achieve that portability. GNOME may be part of GNU, but I do not really
> think that just because one part of the GNU system is portable to
> non-GNU systems does not necessarily mean "GNU assures this
> portability".

Again, this demonstrates that you do NOT know what GNU means.

If GNOME is intended to be the desktop environment of the GNU system,
and the GNU System should be portable, then it is logical to think
that GNOME should be portable. right?

Of course, there are specific libraries or packages that are not going
to be portable, but they are a very little percentage.

Another recommended reading:

> I consider myself very pragmatic when it comes to these things, yes.

Nothing bad about that.

> Well, if "Open Source" == "Pragmatic", then yes, I would consider myself
> a member of the "Open Source movement".

Well, yes, Open Source is a development methodology, while Free
Software is more a philosophy. (something like that answered RMS when
I asked him personally in one conference)

That's one BIG difference.

We, in the Free Software Movement, fight to preserve our freedom,
while the Open Source guys, fight to create high quality software.

We use similar methods, but our objectives are different.

The GNU Projects wants the benefit of the community, it is more a
social movement if you like.

> But aside from being neatly pidgeonholed due to one of my views,

I think that thinking about FREEDOM (in all aspects related to
computers, privacy, software) is a very broad point of view, while
looking at high quality of software is a more "pidgeonholed" (as you
said) view.

> I do not consider it particularly worthwhile to spend GNOME money on
> promoting GNU over any other Unix clone, even if GNOME is part of

Maybe from your pragmatic point of view it is not worthwhile, but from
the philosophical point of view of preserving our freedom, and raise
the awareness of the people about this freedom, certainly it is worth

> (just as I would not expect the MS Office team to promote
> Windows over Mac -- in fact, one of the selling points of Office
> itself is that it works on non-MS systems).

Do Microsoft teams look the market in a philosophical way?

The GNU project looks the "market" in a philosophical way. 

There you have your difference.

> If FSF wants to spend FSF money to promote GNU, then I say more
> power to them.

are you implying that the FSF shouldn't spend money to promote GNU?

if so, then why would the FSF exist?

The FSF was created exactly with that idea in mind!!!!

You shouldn't be even questioning it, it is explained in the web

>  I would consider it far more worthwhile to promote
> the Unix-style-OS (since Unix is referred to by me in these messages
> as a type of OS, not the trademark) worldview, then worry about
> promoting the FSF worldview

Yep, definitely, you are NOT part of the Free Software movement,
that's a shame, I would like people with your dedication join us in
our task of preserving the freedom.

> But (and this is the most important point :-)) all this is academic. It
> depends on what the GNOME cabal wants to do, and they have been silent
> on this issue.

Well, our participation is important too.  (Free Software and Open Source)


   Even when I contribute with the GNU Project in several fronts (GNU
   Volunteer Coordinator, GNU Software Evaluator, System Hacker), my
   point of view is very personal, and while it might match exactly
   what is said in the GNU Web pages, it might not. So, if you want
   the official point of view of the GNU Project, please visit the web
   pages at:


P.S.  Jim, I hope that you take this discussion "professionally", it
        has never been my intention of offending you. The last thing
        we need in our movements (Free Software/Open Source) is to
        fight each other.

- -- 
Hugo Gayosso
Support the Free Software
Support the GNU Project
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