Re: Towards a new LPPL draft
On 23 Jul 2002, Jeff Licquia wrote:
> Correct. I want to distinguish here between the rights Debian needs to
> have and the rights Debian intends to exercise.
This may be a useful distinction, in that it reminds license authors to
keep "I hope" and "I want" out of the license and stick to "You must" and
"you may", and include supporting documents that suggest friendlier ways
to do things.
However, Debian tries very hard (and succeeds IMO) not to require any
rights solely on our own behalf. Anything Debian does is explicitly
allowed for our users to do.
Regardless of the fact that Debian is unlikely to use some of the rights
we require, we also guarantee those rights to our users, of whom we have
no knowledge of their desire or intent.
> The rights we demand are usually for special cases.
I strongly disagree. The rights we demand are guaranteed to our users,
and they get to decide what's a special case and what's a burning need.
>> > Would it work for you to require the following?
>> > - if the whole is named "LaTeX", every changed file must be renamed
>> > - if the whole is named something else, files may be changed without
>> > renaming
>> if there is provision that a pristine LaTeX is distributed as well so
>> that the user has the choice, probably, otherwise I think not.
So far so good. Pristine LaTeX (plus patches) is the source, modified
unLaTeX is the executable. The user has the choice to install the source
if they like.
> OK. Now I'd like to hear the Debian side. Here are the conditions for
> modification that are being proposed as I understand them:
> - you must rename all modified files, or
> - you must rename the whole of LaTeX in your modified copy AND
> distribute a pristine copy of LaTeX as well.
> Comments? Branden, Walter, Mark, and Jeremy, I'm especially interested
> in your opinions, since you three are the current objectors.
This seems free to me, using the second option. I don't know of any other
packages that require distribution of source (instead of making source
available seperately) and require patches seperate from original source,
but I can live with it, unless I've missed some subtlety.
Definitions should be clear, though. Pristine source can be distributed
with a modified version in the same way that other source is distributed
with the binaries, which is to say that users can choose not to download
or install it (though they'd then be barred from redistributing it). It
may even be delivered on a different medium (i.e. include a source CD with
unmodified LaTeX to go with the memory-constrained PDA that has tinyLaTeX
>> I didn't intend to bring that up last time, but really, if you think
>> that the proposed conclusion by Jeff is violating DSFG then you have to
>> be honnest enough to through out the software by Knuth as well, eg top
>> of cmr10.mf says
>> % THIS IS THE OFFICIAL COMPUTER MODERN SOURCE FILE cmr10.mf BY D E KNUTH.
>> % IT MUST NOT BE MODIFIED IN ANY WAY UNLESS THE FILE NAME IS CHANGED!
A bug has been filed. I hope there's a workaround available (like
proactively renaming cmr10.mf, or finding a free replacement), but I
haven't seen anyone address it yet.
Mark Rafn firstname.lastname@example.org <http://www.dagon.net/>
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