Re: Debian i386 freeze
> Ahh but the question was _could_ we if we wanted to. (Which for the
> reason you stated we don't.)
> Perhaps in the time and environment the GPL was created, "major system
> component" was clear-cut but it seems very nebulous today.
The intent is that you should be able to buy the bare minimum OS (without
which you computer would be an expensive doorstop) and take any GPL code, and
be able to run it.
What the GPL is attempting to guard against is a situation where the efforts
of GPL programmers are hijacked by commercial interests, by taking their code
and using it in a program where one part of the program is proprietary, and
effectively cripples the code if it is missing.
In today's environment, where people have taken to unbundling the development
tools, and dynamic linking is an issue, it is sometimes difficult to see how
the GPL might be interpreted by lawyers, but the intent is still clear that
GPL'd code should never be allowed to be held to ransom because some vital
feature of the program is only available if you pay someone, and/or the code
for that bit is not maintainable, because it has a restrictive copyright.
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