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Re: Visualboy Advance question.

Evan Prodromou wrote:
> On Tue, 2004-06-22 at 19:02, Josh Triplett wrote:
>>While I agree that it is not necessarily required that a Free package
>>Depend on some piece of Free data for it to operate on, I do believe
>>that if there is _no_ Free data for the package to run with, and that
>>data is required in order to operate, then the package must go in
>>contrib until at least one free piece of data is available.
> I just don't think that software Depends: on the data it manipulates the
> way that it Depends: on, say, libraries or other programs.

>From Debian Policy section 3.5:
> Every package must specify the dependency information about other
> packages that are required for the first to work correctly.

Emulators do not work correctly without software to emulate.

> It also seems terribly unhackerly. I mean, heck: if I'd like to create
> some Free Gameboy ROMs, I'd want to do it on a Free operating system.

Agreed.  I would also say that a Gameboy emulator could go into main if
all the tools necessary to create a Free Gameboy ROM were packaged, even
if such a ROM did not yet exist.  In this case, the emulator would serve
as a way to test your ROM.

This situation would be much like Winelib: No software linked to libwine
exists in Debian, but GCC and Winelib together provide all the tools
necessary to create some.  If it were only possible to create Winelib
applications using a non-free compiler or toolchain, then Winelib would
need to go to contrib.

> Lastly, I guess there's just something really violating about thinking
> that Debian is judging the data I have, or could have, on my hard drive.
> So I'm not working with Free data. So what? Mind your own beeswax,
> Debian.

Debian is not judging the data _you_ have.  Software in main is usable
with both Free and non-free software/data/etc, and Debian doesn't care
which you use.  Software in contrib has no Free software/data/etc to
work with, so it is impossible to use it on a completely Free system;
you are still welcome to use it.

- Josh Triplett

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