Subject: Re: free software as a delivery vehicle for lisp
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: Wed, 03 Apr 2002 15:10:13 GMT
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* David Golden
| Argh.  At least try to form an abstract concept, why don't you?

  What an amazingly stupid way to react.  The "abstract concept" you want
  to hide here is that you think "X is not so bad!  Look, it is better than
  pure evil!", which is what people who want to hide their relativistic
  thinking very commonly do.  Perhaps you are not used to forming other
  abstract concepts than those you already have?  Many people suffer that.

| - that was an example.  - here's another : "I just got the AutoCAD source
| from Autodesk, now they won't let me change the license for my tree and
| resell it?"  - sounds silly, doesn't it.

  Yes, you do sound silly.  How about not sounding silly, so "discussion"
  with you would not be so boring?

| You proceed to go on about MS.  That was not my argument, and you hardly
| score debate points for demolishing a straw man of your own construction.

  At least try to form an abstract concept, will you?  _You_ wanted to
  bring in Microsoft and wanted to make something look less vile in
  comparison to a monstrosity.  Now you regret it.  How stupid is that?

| Whatever, I'm thoroughly bored with this thread now.

  Of course you are.

| I doubt it, personally.  Though a large enemy does tend to serve to
| temporarily unify people, granted, I, for one will continue releasing
| what little code I currently write off my own bat under open source
| licenses.

  Of course you will.  Get back to me in 10 years, though.

| Heck, somewhere on the web is code I released back when I thought
| proprietary software was a good idea (up until about 1994-1995,
| probably...)

  Most of us think both proprietary and free software are good ideas, for
  certain uses.  If you think one is not a good idea, it looks like that
  kind of fanaticism that gets people killed.

| So, unless you are prepared to assert that I am nothing (which isn't very
| nice, not that I'd care overmuch), then I have personal reason to doubt
| the idea that in the absence of a common foe Free Software would
| disappear -

  Yeah, and one man makes an economy.

  The reason people can make so much non-commercial software today is that
  they are employed by companies that make enough money from something else
  that they (think they) can afford to make their software a non-product,
  and who think that making a business out of their in-house software
  production is worthless, but this also means that purchasing software for
  the same purposes is out of the question.  I happen to have consulted for
  three different companies who wanted to take their in-house software and
  productize it because they found that the value of that software began to
  be noticeable and marketable.  If they had just squandered it away as
  open source, they would have lost out on enormous values.  To recap a
  previous analogy: It is not bad to give food to the starving, but an
  entire economy of "free food" is really, really bad.  We already see that
  many people are actually unwilling to pay for support for non-commercial
  software and are unwilling to pay for system administration tools for
  Linux, but somehow books on the topic sell like hotcakes, which implies
  that people are more than willing to spend money on fairly incompetent
  people working on stuff from example-style books, but not pay for a
  product from a competent vendor.  This puzzles me somewhat.

  In a fight against something, the fight has value, victory has none.
  In a fight for something, the fight is a loss, victory merely relief.