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Re: Visualboy Advance question.

On Wed, 2004-06-23 at 15:30, Walter Landry wrote:
> Evan Prodromou <evan@debian.org> 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.
> > 
> > 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.
> > 
> > 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.
> This was all discussed to death when Quake 2 was GPL'd [1].  The main
> problem I see is that if you accept these arguments, contrib becomes
> empty.

Except for all the programs that depend on proprietary libraries, or
proprietary runtime environments, or installer programs (though I would
be fine moving the last case to non-free). i.e. the stuff that Depends:
in the Debian sense.

>  Whether you like it or not, there is a value judgement going
> on with contrib vs. main.  If something is not "useful" enough with
> non-free bits, then it goes into contrib.

A good comparison is, why do we ship .doc readers in Debian? I'm pretty
sure we don't distribute any .docs (someone will prove me wrong on this,
I bet), and I can't recall seeing one under a free license that wasn't
also available in some better form. We've come to the conclusion that
because the .doc reader itself is free and because many of our users
might want to open .docs (even though they are proprietary pieces of
shit), we include the reader.

Prior to the inclusion of OpenOffice, I don't even think we had anything
that could generate free .docs (no, AbiWord can't); I believe GCC can
generate free Gameboy binaries.
Joe Wreschnig <piman@sacredchao.net>

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