Re: User's thoughts about LPPL
> From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Thomas Bushnell, BSG)
> Date: 22 Jul 2002 02:27:04 -0700
> David Carlisle <email@example.com> writes:
> > Prior to the latex2e licence (which from which LPPL was derived)
> > "latex" could be (and often was) locally modified and re-distributed.
> > It got so bad by around 1990 that passing a latex document from one site
> > to another was largely a matter of luck.
> Perhaps latex is a miserably poor interchange format. Or perhaps
> the language needed a clear standard and clear documentation. After
> all, the way the world of C programmers solved this problem was by
> careful standardization, not by insisting that there should be Only
> One C Compiler.
I am afraid you do not know about the recent history of gcc.
When cygwin people split their branch from RMS, in couple years the
situation became amusing. At some time I had to have three gcc
compilers on my Linux box. One could compile the kernel and pretty
much nothing else. Another compiled most of other programs but some
fraction that was compiled by the third one. Of course even some code
allowed compilation by all three, the executable would be different --
but who cares?
The situation was resolved when RMS overcame his obstination and
delegated the full responsibility to gcc team. Note that neither C
standard nor any particular properties of the language helped. There
is no guarantee this will not happen again -- actually there is almost
a guarantee it will.
This situation was merely annoying. With LaTeX it would be
disastrous. It would contradict our professed goals.
Again, our goal is exemplified in the way TeX makes calculations. It
shuns floating point numbers precisely because this might produce
slightly different output on different machines. Instead all
calculations are integer with the base 5.36e-7cm. We want our output
to be this exact.
Again, we consider our goals to be compatible with the free software
goals. If you do not agree with the way we are doing things, this is
fine. But I think you owe us to understand what we are doing and why
we are doing this before making a judgement.
The little pieces of my life I give to you, with love, to make a quilt
to keep away the cold.
To UNSUBSCRIBE, email to firstname.lastname@example.org
with a subject of "unsubscribe". Trouble? Contact email@example.com