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Re: [Fwd: New Bitstream technology comes to Linux and Desktop/LX]

David Palmer <davidpalmer@westnet.com.au> writes:

> Point the second: There seems to be an ever accelerating interest in
> the proprietary section toward incorporating free/open source
> software into "hybrid" environments. This has a double implication
> for me - (1) Proprietary vendors wanting to incorporate FOSS to
> extend and enhance marketability of their product/s.

I'm unhappy that a Linux vendor is putting nonfree software at the
core of their distribution.  However, won't this library be impossible
to link with [L]GPL code, making it illegal to distribute software
built against it, such as libpango and the whole of GNOME and KDE?

> (2) The possibility of proprietary interests incorporating FOSS into
> their productline, and then by way of this assuming a legal posture
> in the possession aspect.

(3) What are the implications for binary compatibility?  I notice that
    all of the GTK+ 2.x programs I've written are linked (indirectly)
    with libfreetype.so.6.  Will that make them gratuitously
    incompatible with the rest of the Linux world?

This could be very worrying.  If it becomes very popular with
commercial Linux distributions who are willing to compromise their
principles in order to gain a perceived edge over other distributions,
this could prevent all programs built on a Debian system from running
on theirs (and vice versa).  Lycoris, like Caldera, has dabbled with
non-free software in their distribution, so hopefully this won't get
futher ingrained than that.

While faster font rendering would be nice, I'm very impressed with the
current state of font rendering with XRender.  It's a world apart from
where we were just a few years ago, and comparing it with a Windows XP
install at work using the same (Bitstream Vera) fonts, it looks better
than that, too (the quality of the anti-aliasing on Windows is far


Roger Leigh

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