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Re: Final text of GPL v3

On Mon, Jul 02, 2007 at 01:00:38PM +0100, Gervase Markham wrote:
> >Free Software, when it's really free and not merely a ruse to sneak some
> >proprietary crap through, makes us free from legal concerns -- both "am I
> >allowed to use X?" and "I wouldn't want people to have a right to use Y
> >without paying me" are legal concerns here. Having legal notices
> >everywhere destroys this freedom.
> So the notice "You may play ball games in this park" destroys the 
> freedom to play ball games in the park?

If the notice is posted on a sign at the entrance to the park, no.  If the
amount of signs is so bad that it interferes with play, then yes, the
freedom is hampered.

> >Well, let's take a system with two user interfaces:
> >1) a GUI where you set up rules like "if someone approaches the computer,
> >   do X.  If someone leaves the room and there's no one else in, do Y.".
> > 2) hands-free interface where user interacts by moving around, waving
> >    hands, etc, and gets feedback using voice.
> >
> >Interface 1 can have "Help | About" just fine.  The problem is, you need to
> >make it possible to get legal notices using _every single interface_.  For
> >interface 2, this could be something like "to unblank screen, approach the
> >computer.  To blank it, move away.  To get told legal notices, jump".
> Yep. Why is this worse than the GUI or command-line versions? You could 
> argue that the command could be accidentally invoked, but that's true of 
> buttons in GUIs or mistakenly typing -V instead of -v on a command-line 
> app. Just pick a sequence of movements that it's very difficult to do 
> without meaning it.

Ok, let's scrap the high-tech detector with enough resolution to tell you're
moving your hand and take a more realistic one which can just tell that
you're sitting at the computer -vs- being somewhere else in the room -vs-
the room being empty.  The voice can tell me a lot while my feedback is
very limited.

Or, take your common dumb temperature control: you have a box with two
buttons and a simple LCD display which can show only two digits.  Yet,
nowadays everything tends to have a chip inside -- and if anything inside
has anything to do with GPLv3, you suddenly need to convey the legal

My point is that the requirement of every interactive interface having a
feature to display the legal notices can be a severe use constraint.

1KB		// Microsoft corollary to Hanlon's razor:
		//	Never attribute to stupidity what can be
		//	adequately explained by malice.

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