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Re: Font-Awesome 5 no build system DFSG compatibility

On Thu, 19 Jul 2018 at 00:38:15 +0200, Alexis Murzeau wrote:
> Since version 5, font-awesome upstream repository contains both source
> files and generated files but not the build system [1].

I think this is a technical issue, but not a DFSG violation; and I think
it would be appropriate to track it as a bug, but not a release-critical

The same situation exists in any package where some hard-to-modify,
non-executable data file (perhaps an icon) is accompanied by its
easier-to-modify source form (perhaps in GIMP format or as a SVG) but
a manual export step is required to transform the source form into the
modifiable form.

We generally hold executable code (must be compiled at build time,
with some rare exceptions) to a higher standard than "pure data" (not
necessarily recompiled at build time), because in practice it is far
more likely that we will find ourselves in a position where we need to
exercise our right to modify for executable code, to be able to fix bugs
in that code; and because in most cases fixing bugs in executable code
by direct modifications to a generated format is much les practical than
doing the same with many non-executable data formats (for instance if
you need to, you can perform many edits to an icon in its bitmap form
without going back to its source form).

> So it is not possible to regenerate generated files from source files
> without guessing which file are generated and which are sources.

We do not require that packages are modifiable by people who do not
know how to modify that particular language or format. People with the
necessary knowledge presumably know which file is in a preferred form
for modification and which file is generated from it; if they didn't,
then that would preusmably have to be because the generated file was a
reasonable form for modification in its own right.

> Considering DFSG #2:
> > The program must include source code, and must allow distribution in
> > source code as well as compiled form.

The "program" (package, module) includes source code: [x]

The license allows distribution of that source code: [x]

So yes I think this is fine for the DFSG.


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