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Re: mass bug filing for unmet dependencies (Was: firmware status for eagle-usb-*)

On Thu, Oct 28, 2004 at 10:41:07AM -0400, Michael Poole wrote:
> "We do it that way because it's not practical to do it the other way"?
> Except for GR 2004-004, when has that been good enough to ignore the
> SC?

If I were ignoring the social contract your question might have some

What we have are a large variety of possible interpretations of
the social contract when we focus in narrowly enough.  I'm choosing
interpretations of the social contract which fit what I know of our
decisions and rationale.

> Will you propose a GR that we should ignore (for now or forever)
> the dependency of boot loaders on the BIOS?

I'm not planning on that.

> > For the rest to be relevant to the firmware discussion, the examples you
> > mention would have to be cases where we are dealing with the requirement
> > targets as if they are software.
> "We do it that way because that's the way we do it"?  The SC is
> specifically not limited to software; that was what GR 2004-003 was
> about, and that was an editorial change: it was supposed to clarify
> the meaning, not change it.

That GR was more about making the SC be not specifically limited to
programs.  And, thus, not about definitions of "software" where that
definition is equivalent to "program".

More specifically, it was intended to make sure that everything we
shipped in main satisfied the DFSG.

> It is not consistent to claim that programmable software on a BIOS
> flash chip is not software, but programmable software in an FPGA is
> software.  It is not consistent to claim that a driver depends on
> software on the other side of a hardware bus but that gaim does not
> depend on software on the other side of a network.

It is, however, consistent to claim that this is an issue of scope,
and that everything we ship in main is in scope.

It's also consistent to extend that scope based on the goals of the free
software community [such as having to do with open and understandable

> Strictly speaking (since the arguments about firmware rely on strict
> interpretations), the dependency is not satisfied merely by the
> existence of some free server implementation.  It has to be part of
> Debian proper.

Strictly speaking, we make choices based on the spirit of the social
contract, not the letter.


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