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Re: distributing precompiled binaries

"Bernhard R. Link" <brlink@debian.org> writes:

> * Steve Langasek <vorlon@debian.org> [090328 23:46]:
> > A PDF as a program is its own source. You're talking about the
> > preferred format for modification of *documentation*, not a
> > program. There's no reason to expect that two different versions
> > of mumble2pdf are going to output two *programs* that resemble one
> > another in the slightest
> This is no different to a compiled binary. It's just another
> computer-readable translation, which a human can also treat as such,
> such a very inconvenient one. And while different compilations of a
> program are in practise very similar, the only thing one can expect
> is that they produce binary that do the same thing (and even that is
> often not true).

Moreover, those that want to have different freedoms for users of
different types of software — documentation, programs, images, etc. —
still have all their arguing ahead of them. The *default* position
should be that all users get the same freedoms; restrictions for some
types of software, that don't apply to others, need to be justified

That's quite apart from the practical matters of even reliably
*distinguishing* different types of bit streams from each other in
order to figure out which rules apply: e.g. if the software is a PDF,
it is both documentation *and* program.

 \      “The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more |
  `\   to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a |
_o__)                                 sober one.” —George Bernard Shaw |
Ben Finney

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