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Re: RFS: tvbrowser -- TV-Browser is a java-based TV guide


While completely off-topic (at least for -mentors), I still feel the need to
respond to this.

The DFSG defines what free software is.  An important freedom (IMO) is #3, the
freedom to modify the program and distribute modifications.

However, this freedom is pretty useless (to people who want to use exclusively
free software) if the modified source needs a non-free compiler.  That is the
reason (I suppose) that a non-free Build-depends: will land a package in
contrib.  It may be free, but not all of the freedoms can be used.

I very much value (in GNU's words) "The freedom to study how the program
works, and adapt it to your needs".  Therefore none of my sources.lists have
contrib in them.  I don't want to use a program, just to find that I cannot
reasonably modify it when I feel the need to do so.

Bas Wijnen

On Sun, Aug 07, 2005 at 01:41:48PM -0400, Joe Smith wrote:
> Just to chime in:
> It really makes little difference if software is packaged in main or 
> contrib. The way I see it both have software available under a 
> DFSG-complient licence.
> Because sometimes there is software in contrib that actually is usable 
> without non-free software, although it use may be limited, I *always* 
> reccomend that contrib be included in any and all source.lists. There 
> really is no reason not to. If the package depends on software in non-free 
> it will just fail to install. Otherwise it will install just fine because 
> it does not depend on a missing package.
> There is no good reason not to think of contrib as an extention of main, 
> where *some* software may require non-free packages.
> Actually I see no good reason at all for a source.list to fail to have 
> contrib. 

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