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Re: [Richard Stallman <rms@gnu.org>] Re: Debian & BSD concerns

On Tue, Feb 23, 1999 at 01:45:25AM -0800, Joseph Carter wrote:
> On Tue, Feb 23, 1999 at 11:11:44AM +1100, Craig Sanders wrote:
> > > Two words: binary drivers.
> > 
> > you don't have to use binary-only drivers if you don't want to. you
> > can ignore their existence entirely.
> You sometimes have no choice.  Modern video cards are all under NDA.  
> Want 3D?  Tough, it's under NDA.  No free drivers.  Want DVD video?   

it's your choice to buy that card. if you want free drivers, then buy a
card which has them.

> Under NDA, there is early development for one of the decoder cards but
> it will be binary only.  Creative Labs is releasing all binary-only
> drivers and recruited one of us to write them.  I could go on, but if
> you aren't going to get the point you aren't going to get it.

who cares? you don't have to use the non-free driver if you don't want

buy a different card.  and write to creative telling them WHY you bought
from a competitor.

> > > If you ask me, that goes against everything the GPL stands for and yes
> > > it can have a serious impact on Linux.
> > 
> > only if you choose to use them.
> only if you have a choice.

you have a choice, regardless of whether or not it's one you
particularly want to make. difficult choices are an inevitable part of

buy a different card.  live without the latest 3d game (very few of which
actually run under linux anyway).

> > it's impact is roughly the same (legally speaking) as choosing to
> > use non-free application software on linux. i.e. it doesn't affect
> > the fact that the kernel is under the GPL.
> Ahh, right.  Well, I'll tell you what...  You show me a driver for
> a DVD decoder that is not binary only.  There is at least one being
> developed, but the author is under NDA.

what has that got to do with the GPL?

all that this proves is that one particular problem has not attracted
anyone with enough time/interest/skill to solve it yet.

if you really want a free dvd driver, then reverse engineer the
binary-only driver and start writing it. yes, that IS hard work - Free
Software isn't the same thing as a Free Lunch.


craig sanders

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