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Re: Dealing with drivers that need firmware on the filesystem

On Sun, 09 Jan 2005, Brian Nelson wrote:
> On Sun, Jan 09, 2005 at 12:59:08PM -0500, Glenn Maynard wrote:
> > No more nonsensical than the fact that code within a program that
> > makes optional use of a non-free library can go in main, while a
> > program consisting soley of that code must go in contrib.
> Of course it is.  If you only rely on package boundaries, you could
> in theory move all of contrib into main by bundling it all into a
> single package that has at least one completely free component.

Dependencies do not make a component any less Free than a component
lacking dependencies. The whole purpose of contrib (at least in my
mind) is to indicate to users that they will need something extra from
non-free or even something we can't distribute to make useful use of
the program in contrib.

Being in contrib doesn't mean that a work is evil, nor is contrib a
second cousin to non-free.

You could conceivably move all of contrib into main by making it into
a package that did something useful. Of course, a package made in the
way you describe would not be useful at all.

Clearly, the maintainer of a package is in the best position to
determine the granularity of their package, and what the package needs
to contain. The maintainer is also in the best position to determine
the Depends: necessary for their package. Maintainers do make mistakes
with granularity (see xlibs FE) and Depends: (I'm guilty here) but
generally speaking, they know how a package should be split, and what
it should depend upon; and when they make mistakes, they fix them.

Don Armstrong

The attackers hadn't simply robbed the bank. They had carried off
everything portable, including the security cameras, the carpets, the
chairs, and the light and plumbing fixtures. The conspirators had
deliberately punished the bank, for reasons best known to themselves,
or to their unknown controllers. They had superglued doors and
shattered windows, severed power and communications cables, poured
stnking toxins into the wallspaces, and concreted all of the sinks and
drains. In eight minutes, sixty people had ruined the building so
thouroughly that it had to be condemed and later demolished.

-- Bruce Sterling, _Distraction_ p4

http://www.donarmstrong.com              http://rzlab.ucr.edu

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