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Re: more evil firmwares found

> Is an application not distributable by Debian if it does not include the 
> source XML of a manual, or the source EPS of an image file, or the 
> source waveform of a mp3, etc etc, ad absurdum?  Where does the cutoff 
> of practicality between software and supporting materials end? 
And as people keep pointing out, we need the source for most of these for 
the same reasons we need the source for software. If you just give us 72 DPI 
pictures of the manual, the only way to make a change is to type the book  
in. Not infrequently, a XML to PDF or PS converter might "just" leave you  
the multiple hours long job of reconstructing the formatting to make the  
What happens if you want to make any change to that MP3? You need to have 
the original WAV file, especially if you're going to need to recompress it. 
No one is debating over the fine edges here; nobody is complaining about 
files that music and graphic files that go through several forms and get 
changes made in each. But we need the source in practice for non-programs 
as much as programs. 
> Doesn't it 
> stand to reason that at least some of the latter [binary blobs], even if  
> I assume that 
> they are software (which seems to be the popular assumption to make), 
> would also not require extra sources, because they happen to also be in 
> the preferred form of modification? 
Have you ever read the story of Mel, in the Jargon file? Even in the days 
of drum memory, only "Real Programmers" wrote code in machine code. To just 
assume that they wrote these large binary blobs in machine code instead of 
assembly is to make an implausible assumption.  
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