KDE-CVS-Digest for August 1, 2003

In this week's CVS Digest: QtRuby, Ruby bindings for Qt are now in the kdebindings module.
KDevelop has a new class browser.
An OBEX kio-slave has been added. KWallet is enabled for compilation and testing. Plus KWin improvements, lots of work on KPilot conduits and many bugfixes.


thank you!

By IR at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

Ruby bindings are cool. I'd also really like to see Object Pascal bindings for KDE. Any other Pascal fans out there?

By py at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

No, sorry :)

By Martin at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

Me! I like Pascal a lot more than C/C++.
It takes more time to write "begin" and "end" and "then",
but it produces a lot more readable source code IMO.
I hate all those brackets in C.

By Jan at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

how about:

#define begin {
#define end }
#define then

By Johan Veenstra at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

No! Use real Pascal or write C++ in usual style. If one makes C++-code look too much like Pascal, one might forget that one is working with C++, not Pascal, and overlook the more subtle differences. And your simple example does not work with "end if;", "end loop;" and "end ;"

By Erik at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

Never seen "end if" and "end loop", must be relatively new syntax. Besides the defines weren't meant to make it look more like Pascal, but to make Jans code more readable to Jan.

If the dislike for a certain language can be solved by a couple of simple defines, then so be it. Anyway you get used to those { and } in no time at all. If the block structures aren't clear enough use bigger indents.

By Johan Veenstra at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

> Never seen "end if" and "end loop".

Sorry, it is Ada.

> If the dislike for a certain language can be solved by a couple of simple defines, then so be it.

I am sure that it would seldom work. It would obviously not work for Ada. Even if it would be possible to define "end if" and "end loop" to "}", it would not work, because the compiler would not check wether "end if" really matches "if" and "end loop" really matches "loop". Compiler checks are essential. And what if someone else will read the code? Someone who is used to the normal style of the used language? Better stick to the normal style.

> If the block structures aren't clear enough use bigger indents.

Always use the horizontal tab character to represent a level of indentation. Then whoever reads the code can set the indentation as big as he wants by adjusting the tab width.

But the problem is not really the size of the indent. It is that a "}" does not show what is ending. Many coders would like to see directly wether it is a "if", "loop", procedure/function (and the name of it) or just a block. The "begin" is often far above the top of the screen.

By Erik at Sun, 2003/08/03 - 5:00am

To get around that problem, I always try to add a small comment behind a } if the opening { is far away, to signify what it is that it is closing:

if (OK) {
....//more than a couple of lines of code here.
} //if (OK)

Makes the code more readable, IMO.

By André Somers at Sun, 2003/08/03 - 5:00am

> if (OK) {
> ....//more than a couple of lines of code here.
> } //if (OK)
> Makes the code more readable, IMO.

As long as the comment is correct, but it is bad because the compiler does not check it. (I have coded like that in LISP.) After a few changes you may get

if (OK) {
// ...
while (a) {
// ...
} //if (OK)

and the compiler accepts it. That's why Ada is superior in this aspect.

By Erik at Sun, 2003/08/03 - 5:00am

Sure, that's possible. Still, it may help you. The new codefolding features are a help too, by the way. It will make the mistake obvious. The mistake you outline above could have been avoided if proper indentation would have been used... Still, I agree that the compiler can't check the code on this level.

By André Somers at Sun, 2003/08/03 - 5:00am

> The mistake you outline above could have been avoided if proper indentation would have
> been used.

Maybe, but no guarantee.

By Erik at Sun, 2003/08/03 - 5:00am

> if (OK) {
> ....//more than a couple of lines of code here.
> } //if (OK)

Looks ugly to me..

By L505 at Sat, 2006/04/29 - 5:00am

Object Pascal was my favourite language before I started to work on KDE/QT. Now I don't miss it anymore. :-) But I believe it would be good to see language bindings as there are many Pascal developers out there and they would enjoy it. (Yes, I know about Kylix, altough I didn't really work on it.) As far as I know Gideon has Pascal support, so it would be great if Gideon could be used to develop complete KDE application in Pascal. Correct me if it's already possible.


By Andras Mantia at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

Me too! Object Pascal is my favorite and mainly language.

By Jose Thadeu Cav... at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

Here, here! :)
Object pascal would be very nice.
I would also really love to see Haskell bindings!! There an haskell GUI taskforce trying to come up with a standard GUI library for the language:
It would be a nice chance to have KDE as the standard Linux/*nix GUI for a language that is becoming quite popular :)


By Snx at Sat, 2003/08/02 - 5:00am

Good that you like pascal. Why don't you buy yourself one kylix license, it's much cheaper compared to QT, moreover you receive a professional environment to use instead of using amateur GPL tools. Commercial made ones (vs free ones) will always be better.
On the other hand QT license is very expensive because of the GPL tirany. You guess what I mean - companies license under GPL and force you to:
1) pay a lot of money
2) never sell your app
Resist the GPL tirany and get yourself free GPL. Then for a regular free market competitive money you will get something real that you can use for producing commercial apps, and will never be afraid about selling your app, and that if GPL was used a freak could take your code and make a fork as it happend to quanta vs quanta-gold.

There is something broken in RMS thoughts and possible 100% GPL society. Everyone must realise that we are living in free market, and capitalist economy. It is this business to function if you are forced to open the code or letting it free.
There is a belief that companies like QT that force GPL tirany can survive, I would say that this is not exactly true. Following a trends of growing share of GPL apps will lead to always free stuff and one will never sell an app and not buying a commercial licence.
Example (quanta vs quanta-gold):
Quanta is GPL, it's free, and will not be sold, someone pays for development of quanta and it get's improved, one day it will became good app and a web designer will not consider buying some - this eats market share from commercial apps.
Quanta Gold is Commercial app, for building it thekompany uses commercial QT license. If the free quanta gets much improved, people will not buy quanta gold and the quanta gold project will die. Then eventually thekompany will not renew one QT license - QT will lose one license.
Similar trends will happen to all comm vs gpl apps. Someday TT will not have enough power to maintain it's GPL lib and will let net freaks to fork it and make amateur GPL soft. QT will get bad. Even if this freaks write good soft TT will definitely die, as a whole commecrial QT industry as we have now.
Continuing this trends you will find how one by one companies that "beleive" that can abuse GPL tirany will die (nobody realises that).

People must sign a resistance against GPL and GPL tirany. Use real commercial apps/libs or BSD ones that not let you to GPL your code, or letting it free.

I know, i know. You will definitely classify me as troll or M$ fan, but look at the reality, and please land to the real world. Think how could a GPL economy function, and think about one line code contributed to GPL soft how much lines of code from commercial soft die. About M$ - they are just a market winner at this moment, hating or not the monopoly will not help distorting one and switching to something GPL will not change the situation on the commercial market.
I think that only Apple shows the right way - they demonstrate how it is possible to compete with M$ without GPLing something. They compete with M$ in the commercial market and successfully sell their product which is better than M$. Moreover they successfully reuse the real free technologies like KHTML and FreeBSD which are free of GPL.

Making something as GPL is:
1) egoism (when opposing to BSD) because you do it for not letting someone to find a good commercial purpose of the code
2) tirany (when selling a commercial licence) because you tell people always GPL or pay us a lot of money
3) market destructive (when competing with commercial apps) because each line of GPL code probably eliminates 10 lines of commercial code (you are destroying the business, you kill some companies that make money)
4) not Free (when you try to make soft) because it chains you with GPL and you are FORCED to GPL your code too

If GPL market share continues its growth something bad will happen soon. You can oppose it by not using GPL apps, not contributing them, not paying GPL tiran companies, letting something to be freeware without opening the code, buying alternative product to the monopoly product(s) (buy mac, buy solaris, buy c++ builder or delphy, buy staroffice, buy oracle, etc - give money to the commercial competition of the monopoly - they will improve and they know how to destroy the monoploy if they have finantial power).

GPL monopoly is bigger danger than M$ monopoly. M$ realises that living in a commercial world they must maintain competitive marketing environment that will maintain their position. They are already letting some .Net components to be made by outside companies and also offering them on their site, a GPL monopoly will lead to absolutely non-existant commercial opportunity - in current capitalist free market economy of our world it will destroy a whole industry.

Freedom. Some net individuals as RMS abuse this word in order to psychologically deformate the community in order to apply a their wrong ideas. GPL does definitely not mean Freedom - it means GPL tirany, GPL chaining, GPL egoism. Freedom is the FREEDOM OF CHIOICE, FREE MARKET, FREEWARE apps (no open code), BSD. The last one is free by the real means of freedom (along with the X license and Apache) because it gives you the Freedom to do whatever you want. About the FREEDOM of CHIOICE you definitely lose it when there is GPL monopoly - ask yourself how many HTML editor apps you have for KDE (where is your choice?)? Or how could a FREE MARKET exist in a commercial competitive economy where the quality must be the key, commercial app cannot coexist with GPL apps or environment, moreover it cannot survive.

Too many thoughts were expressed, you have enough food for your brain, and I hope articles like this will help the rising anti-GPL resistance.

Btw does anyone knows an entirely free of GPL but opensource OS or distribution? (I know about BSD flavors but i mean no (L)GPL apps at all - to do everything you can do with gnu/linux but with all BSD alternatives, for example GCC is a must-be-replaced in a BSD distro).

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Are you being paid by Micro$oft ???

By Coen at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

I am not being paid by M$. But I guess you are not being paid by RMS too.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Okay, Microsoft might be our enemy, bot no need to insult them.

By ac at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

There's one tiny problem. Free software exists, and it is making progress all the time. Feel free to work on commercial (or BSD) software if you like. But other people are creating a huge GPL code base which makes re-using code easy and cheap. Writing a competitive piece of software is getting more expensive every day. 20 years ago a good assembler programmer was able to write a competitive word processor in a year or less. Today companies like Microsoft are putting hundreds or even thousands of man years into a word processor. The only way to compete with them is to invest a *huge* amount of money into the word processor, and live from selling licenses.

The free software alternative to adapt existing code to your (or your customer's) needs. You only get paid for the work that you do, not for the investment that you did to create the product. Sure, you can not get as rich from working on free software as you would from selling licenses. But on the other hand the risk of investing the money up-front before you sold a single license is also huge.

The whole point of free software, from a vendors perspective, is that it breaks the old cycle invest-money/sell-licenses. Instead you sell just the work that you do, on a per-hour basis. As the money that you need to invest (and thus the risk) is getting larger, free software becomes the only solution that is commercially viable to create projects in dimensions that you need for most mainstream products.

And there is, of course, the buyers perspective. The buyer does not pay for licensing, only for the improvements that he ordered and for services around the product. Often (but not always) this is cheaper. The buyer does not depends on a single vendor who maintains a monopoly over the product. The buyer is able to adapt the product to his own needs. If you need a change in a commercial product *immediately* you are usually lost, unless you pay a obscene amount of money to the vendor. Free software does not have these risks, which is why it is more attractive, especially for the corporate buyer.

By AC at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

You have an imporant visions about the costs of a particular piece of software from buyer's point of view.
Buyer definitely wins when everything is free, but there is no perspective then for this business. And buyers would understand that.

What about the seller perspective? How about the QT model GPL tirany that forces you to may a lot of money or go GPL?

About the acheivments you meantion, they are available with other licenses like BSD that does not require you to open the source. Also if you buy a commercial one you also have (even much better) from of reuse.

Something to not forget is that for quality maintenance and support of a particular piece of soft/lib there is a need of solid company and team behind it. GPL involves a defragmentation of the business leading to smaller groups or individuals which are not capable to maintain the quality.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Well, if you listened to RMS, you sure know.

1. Not all software is sold, most software is custom software.

This means, that for the largest part of software (like 80%) there is no market, but use. Companies pay for implementations and of course receive the source code and all rights all the time.

They save a lot building on GPL software. That's the society value of Free Software anyway.

You can also make a living that way, writing custom software. I do.

2. Copyright is a right not a tyrany

You know, it's their code. Like your code is your code. How can you question their right to licence under whatever conditions they choose, when you want to use the same right to make money?

Yours, Kay

By Debian User at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

> You can also make a living that way, writing custom software. I do.

It's interesting how exactly do you live? (how you pay your rent, taxes, goods, stuff, hardware, software - you guess if you work full time for free you will die)

> How can you question their right to licence under whatever conditions they
> choose, when you want to use the same right to make money?

I don't actually want to make any money from GPL soft because I beleive it's does not meet some quality criterias. What I envision as problem is that there is a global problem comming from GPL that destroys the software making as a enterprise and business, and turns it as a hobby. Not to mention that limited competition decreases user's opportunity for freedom of choice, and decreases the quality.

You need a lesson how does the free market economy works.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

1. Do you understand the term "custom software"?

It means that I write specialized software that only one customer is possibly interested in. You never see this software, but it exists and it is the largest part of the jobs and of course software at all.

The customer pays for our ability to write software and we benefit from improved infrastructure.

2. Quality and hobby

You may need to accept that the free market economy lets Free Software win. I am usually quite optimistic, it will.

As to the quality, funny how I find that Free Software will overall improve software quality. Our software largely benefits from using better infrastructure. We can provide better value to the customer at lower costs.

Yours, Kay

By Debian User at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

OK, again, be more real, land to real world - answere your self the question how do you make your earnings?
(what amount of the money you earn you earn them from the your gpl code and what you earn as hired for a commercial softwre??)

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

I earn money, not with GPLed software, but with the system we build which is migrating to GPLed software. Linux, MySQL, GNU and Python to name the most important ones.

Our licence is more free than GPL in the sense that there is no licence, but ownership.

The client lives well from using the software.

I guess, you are a student worried that you won't find a job later on. And you seek to blame GPL software replacing commercial software for that. Maybe that's even true. But it's only a few jobs anyway. Think yourself, how many have work from e.g. MS Word (100 developers) and how many have (still) work from puting MS Office into custom applications by scripting it in Visual Basic.

You don't understand the market you are talking of. The commercial software is inferior infrastructure. It has high costs in both getting it and living with its marketing oriented constraints.

Yours, Kay

By Debian User at Tue, 2003/08/05 - 5:00am

Don't feed the troll.

By CE at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Running out of the reality will not make the world better

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Beeing evil won't either do it.

Nobody forces you to use the GPL.
If you want to use code of somebody, he may tell how to use this code.
Why should there be a problem with that?

By CE at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

The seller's perspective is that free software will become, sooner or later, an economic neccessity. Why do you think did Apple take an LGPL'd HTML engine? Because it was not economically viable for them to create a HTML engine from the scratch. Software is slowly hitting a tipping point where the cost of producing proprietary software from the scratch does not justify the possible revenues. The GPL is a way out, because it allows you to build on existing software.

And of course there is a perspective for business. Free software needs to be improved and enhanced, and someone needs to pay for it. It's unlikely that everything will be done by volunteers who are working for free. So eventually people will have to pay for the advancement of the software. Probably not as much as for license-based software, but also by the users. Either directly (because they want some extra feature) or indirectly (because they hire a company that lives from supporting a product, and needs this product to stay competitive).

Practice showed that BSD does not work, because the people are not contributing back, at least not as much as with GPL. BSD has a short-time benefit for those who want to sell it as proprietary software, but the long-term disadvantage that because of this less code is contributed to the BSD-licensed part. This is the reason why FreeBSD&friends are slowly falling behind Linux. BSDs have a lot to catch up if they still want to run on the next generation of hardware...

If khtml would not be LGPLd, and thus all HTML engines would be under GPL, it's likely that Apple would have created a browser under GPL - that would be their only solution for loosing their dependecy on Microsoft's IE. But because there was a code base with less restrictions they just have to release the HTML renderer. If KHTML had been under BSD, I bet that they would not have release anything.

By AC at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Then the options are:
1) GPL tirany (with duallicensing)
2) no way to sell it (with GPL only - everyone can fork)
Both options are not acceptable

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

With the GPL you don't sell software, you sell improvements.

By AC at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Of course you can sell it. I have bought lots of free software, most notably RedHat Linux.

Of course, I'm not really buying the software, but the packaging and support.

I am perfectly willing to buy more and more free software on that basis.

As to your assertions that you need a company to assure quality... I find that the best software I use is free software. Python, gcc, xemacs, the gnu toolchain, linux, KDE, etc.

By TomL at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

This days there is a danger comming for the software making businesses. There are two growing monsters attacking from two opposite different fronts. Some are being defeated, assimilated or join the one empire, another join the other empire, die or decline.

Let me explain:
Go to tucows and you will find a real power of the free market, a lots of companies competing, and providing a big variety of apps. End user benetits because can choose, and moving power of what Adam Smith invented drives the natural diversity and evolution of this business.
What is happening today and what are the two epmires.
1) M$ Empire. With each next release we see abuse of its monopoly to adopt other products and destroy other businesses. As you guess there is IE defeated NS, there is MediaPlayer which fights winamp, MSNMessenger which fights ICQ, AIM. You don't need anymore apps like WinZip with XP, you don't need wingate since W2K, Java is now being attacked with .Net weapon, they expand on server market, they just buy some companies and applying their expansion. Step by step with each next release user declines one or another app, and slowly moving to full MS solution.
Moreover as user gets more chained to the OS the prices are being risen.
2) GPL Empire. As opposed to M$ with army of millions blind hackers around the world they build an ideal weapon for non-commercial environment. Some companies in order to survive decide to abuse some GPL software, or to release one. On other hand enthusiasts start small groups and establish variety of OSS projects ( ). What happens is that the big variety of companies making commercial apps dissapear - join GPL, die or decline because of their inability to sell. Market is shortened for them because out there are GPL apps entirely for free, their natural driving power that comes from the free market is lost.
(guess what happens for example with industry like carmaking if for some reason someone starts giving cars for free?)

Little by little from two sides this industry is declining because of the two empires eating from both sides.

What will happen if everything becames GPL? Yes the life will continue, just there will be no more big companies, but only a smaller service oriented groups and individuals. This in terms of economics is defragmenting and decline of that economy and not an improvement.

Another good example i can give about the effect of GPL is this:
1) one guy works for 3d commecial softare making company and as a hobby in his free time he works on GPL wordprocessing app
2) another guy friend of the first one works for a company that makes commercial wordprocessing app in his free time as a hobby makes a GPL 3d software
Possible conlusion is that something bad happens and tomorrow both this guys lose their jobs because the GPL 3d soft eats the market share of the commercial one and the GPL wordprocessor wins the market of the commercial wordprocessor.
Those guys then have no other option except to establish an opensource projects around their GPL apps and their own companies around them but will never be possible to make the same money as they did while working for a company.
Of course this is very simple and artificially improved impossible case but in general right now commercial apps lose market share because of gpl alternatives.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

>>What will happen if everything becames GPL? Yes the life will continue, just there will be no more big companies, but only a smaller service oriented groups and individuals. This in terms of economics is defragmenting and decline of that economy and not an improvement.<<

This is not true.
1. Companies like IBM are not exactly small. All huge consulting companies can (and will) compete in this market, just like smaller companies...
2. It will restore true competition. Today you have monopolies and oligopolies in most software categories. This is a somewhat natural condition, as in software it does not make sense to have more than 2-3 products per category. Markets around products, like books and training, usually can't support more than 2-3 products, and it becomes harder to hire knowledgable workers when the market is fragmented. This is why they consolidate and monopolies are built. With the effect that innovation stops and buyers pay too much for the product. Databases are probably the best example.
Free software creates competition, because an unlimited number of companies compete for services for the same product. This is like markets were intended to be.

>>Those guys then have no other option except to establish an opensource projects around their GPL apps and their own companies around them but will never be possible to make the same money as they did while working for a company.<<

If the people previously had a quasi-monopoly in their niche and made much more than what they invested for creating the software, yes. But then the buyers also paid too much and innovation usually stopped. The smartest strategy for a monopolist is to improve the product only so much that there is a sufficient reason for the customers to buy upgrades. The formular is that the extra-value for the customer must be at least as high as the upgrading costs. It does not pay off to do more, that would be more costs without any additional revenues.
But if you have competition, there's the potential that the extra-value is much higher than the actual costs. That's because the price is not bound to the value, but to the amount of work.

By AC at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

> 1. Companies like IBM are not exactly small. All huge consulting companies can (and will) compete in this market, just like smaller companies...

That's right, but not exactly. Companies like IBM, Sun, HP survive because they are also hardware vendors. Yes hardware vendors will contuinue to exist.

> 2. It will restore true competition. Today you have monopolies and oligopolies in most software categories....

Yes, that's what I meant. Sercvices companies will be created a smaller ones, that serve manintenance, support and customization but the bigger solid companies that create and innovate cannot reach to this stage. May be only big ones that are also hardware vendors too will continue to centralise serious efforts for innovations.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

>>Companies like IBM, Sun, HP survive because they are also hardware vendors. Yes hardware vendors will contuinue to exist.<<

IBM is primarily a provider of services and consulting, not hardware. Just like Accenture, CSC and all the others... HP is also trying to get into the services business. The hardware margins are shrinking all the time, and commodity hardware like x86 is closing the gap to extremely expensive high-end stuff.

By AC at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

It's one of the biggest fears of people that big companies rule their life.
So everybody should be keen on using OSS.

By CE at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

You don't really understand even what you are saying. And really there are not millions of hackers working on OSS. In fact it was less than 25,000 from the last statistics.

What you constantly keep saying is that there is no way to make money from GPL software and this is not true. The software industry is turning into services and support and this is the best way to make money from it. You don't pay for the software, you pay for the solution, integrating that software into your business. I am not an expert on this, but if you study the industry and read a few books you will notice that the GPL is reviving the indsutry.

In addition it is impossible for everything to be GPL, there is a space for both commercial companies and GPLD ones. If everything was GPL it also means that the market has adapted and that the GPL is profitable.

I also think your example is flawed. Companies don't lose market share over night. For example has existed for quite some time and MS's office is not goign away any time soon. The people working on GPL software are often even hired to continue their work on the project or jsut hired because they have shown their skills.

You really don't understand where the costs in the software industry are and how it works. This isnt the place for misfounded trolls like you. Stupidity is like a virus so i will cease talking to you and hope you don't infect anyone.

By Mike at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

As you are talking about economics, put it this way, GPL forces companies producing crapy closed source code or code taken from BSD'style licensed software tweaked (thay say "enhanced") to be incompatible with the original (read: kerberos, microsoft) to lower their prices or adapt to the free software's way. This because as you sayed there are good and free software replacement for the crappy closed source and expensive ones. Well, here you seem to think that this will destroy the softare houses witch enjoy profits from crappy software and treating users like apples or pears. So the IT industry will suffer lose in employment and profit following your reasoning. I think indeed that the money not spended from costumers in crappy, expensive and closed source software will return in the IT industry by other means, more manpower for data centers, more programs to coustomise for the costumer needs, at the point where the distinction from programmers and in house employed system administrators / integrators becomes less noticeable. And the inccentives to use the GPL become more and more attractive because of code reuse.
An analogy, your reasoning is like saying that researching other energetic resources than petroleum does harm becouse the poor petroleum companies will suffer loose and will lower the number of employes. Think about this.

As a side note, those poor software houses witch need the GPL'ed software for free but dont want to release the code, you think are acting right to the developers that maked this possible for free?

By fredi at Tue, 2003/08/05 - 5:00am

I tried kylix. Nice product. I actually own a version of Delphi for windows.

One problem though. It doesn't fit with the rest of my system. I can't fix bugs in it or the base libraries. If I want to distribute something I write, I have to distribute libraries that the user probably has on their machine already, maybe even a better version.

It's not free or open. You are worried about how to make money from software. That is an important issue, I think people should be able to eat. My experience with proprietary software has been universally negative. Yes it works. But there always has been some frustration or limitation due to the vendor. I am not willing to pay for something that causes me frustration or limits me fundamentally. So, no sale. I'm not parting with my money under those conditions.

Remember windows ME? It was the product of a non competitive market. It didn't matter what MS put out, there wasn't any other choice available. MS has competition now. They finally have a stable server. The proprietary software model naturally produces monopolies. It is a fundamentally unhealthy model. You should be thanking the free software world for providing a healthy balance that benefits everyone.

And if you think that 80%+ margins are the only profitable model for software development, welcome to the real world.


By Derek Kite at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

I agree that monolpoly is a problem and i am against it, but totally moving to GPL is not the right way too.

You have the perfect environment for innovation and development of this business only when there are multiple vendors that compete on the free market. Putting a software on the market that is entirely for no money is unfair cometition and destroys the market.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

All that is happening is the commoditizing of software. All that will happen is MS won't be able to gather 6 billion in cash per quarter, just 4 billion. And what that means is W2000 web server is 300 bucks instead of 2000. This is good.

There is an economy building around free software that will grow it's own market. When MS and Netscape gave browsers away, they grew the internet market.

If there hadn't been linux available, the small ISP's that built the internet wouldn't have been able to afford Sun hardware and software. The industry grew as a result of Linux. The industry also contributed to Linux.

There will be a natural price / profit margin level that will be reached in a free competitive market.


By Derek Kite at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

> If there hadn't been linux available, the small ISP's that built the internet
> wouldn't have been able to afford Sun hardware and software. The industry grew as
> a result of Linux. The industry also contributed to Linux.

Small ISP does not rely on UNIX immitation. They rely on strong UNIX power of the BSD and for Free. It's FreeBSD, and there is no GNU or GPL involved.

Another softwares that small ISPs rely are things like perl, php, apache which are not GPL at all.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Tue, 2003/08/05 - 5:00am

No GNU involved? One has to wonder e.g. with what compiler the programs are compiled. ;-)

By Anonymous at Tue, 2003/08/05 - 5:00am

It only destroys the market for software licenses, which become free. It does not destroy the markets for improving the software and offering services. Actually it frees these markets from an monopoly.

By AC at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Do you understand the waste it is to ask for money for goods that have no cost like e.g. KDE?

1. The item is not put to use to increase productivity where it could have been.

2. The item is reinvented over and over.

As a society you don't want it any different but that these 2 things don't occur. All obstacles to productivity have always been elimated. Why should it this time be different?

And of course, society will prosper even more after it. And if you will, I as custom software writer can feel it already. In the past, we had only the infrastructure we could buy. That was not all what would have been useful. But now we can just plug in some Free Software and our product is better.

Our client works better and that even saves lives. :-)

Yours, Kay

By Debian User at Tue, 2003/08/05 - 5:00am

Just curious, from which corner are you coming? You don't sound like you know much about KDE, FOSS, GPL etc. at all, which is a pity since you're posting on the wrong website.

By Datschge at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am

Good Question.

It's wrong assumption.

I will just tell you this and you will know:
"Is UNIX ready for Desktop?"
(remember this old KDE slogan?)

Now I can say UNIX is ready for desktop. It's acutally much better!
Check OSX from apple, build from FreeBSD. No GPL involved.

KDE is still the same nice and getting improved every day. Last i have is 3.1 and I am using it since 1.1.2. Something that kde really needs to do for surviving is getting more commercial apps on it. For acheiving this it should get free from GPL (QT is the only limitation that makes it impossible to build commercial KDE apps).

I am not one of this people, but I see that many tend to switch to GTK because there are no GPL limitations, KDE has GPL limitation and it's QT.

KDE will get on top if companies start making commercial apps for it.

Current market facts show that Macs are 4-5% of market share which makes them biggest UNIX desktop. Linux is around 1-2% where kde has around 60-70%. Kde has supperier technology compared to gnome, but gpl limitation stops the companies to build kde apps - else they have to pay a lot of money to QT.

Btw as i read carefully, apple freed KHTML from GPL - remember their version is now QT independent, may be it's about a time that kde forces more competitive environment for with pushing it's own kit or QT to decrease the licensing costs.

If you don't beleive me that QT prices are too high just check what borland offers with their kylix.

By Anne-Marie Mahfouf at Mon, 2003/08/04 - 5:00am