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[all candidates] Return to the desert island (cont.)


Thanks algernon, Lucas and Moray for running… I'd like to present my
apologies for the following questions. Feel free to simply dismiss them.

In the lightning talks session of DebConf11, I presented [1] some
wild thoughts about contrib, the Desert Island test, and some software
Debian currently ship in main.

To sum it up:

1. Some software Debian distribute are actually only useful when
   connected to the Internet to access services for which the
   source code is unavailable.

2. The Debian policy states (emphasis is mine):

     # 2.2.2 The contrib archive area

     The contrib archive area contains supplemental packages intended to
     work with the Debian distribution, but **which require software
     outside of the distribution to either build or function**.

     Every package in contrib must comply with the DFSG.

3. One test I've been taught to use to reason about free software is the
   Desert Island test [2] which starts by:

     Imagine a castaway on a desert island with a solar-powered

  Obviously, software that are only frontends to unreproducible “cloud”
  services do not pass the desert island test.

I never followed-up that (small) talk by any concrete actions, but the
question still comes up to my mind from time to time.

Dear candidates, do you think that libechonest [3] should be called free
software? As it requires software outside of the distribution to
function, do you think it should be moved to contrib? What about
s3cmd [4] then?

Do you think that it's a fight that's worth fighting?

[1] <http://meetings-archive.debian.net/pub/debian-meetings/2011/debconf11/low/783_Lightning_Talks.ogv>,
    starting at 00:10:33.
[2] <http://people.debian.org/~bap/dfsg-faq.html>
[3] <http://packages.qa.debian.org/libe/libechonest.html>
[4] <http://packages.qa.debian.org/s/s3cmd.html>

Jérémy Bobbio                        .''`. 
lunar@debian.org                    : :Ⓐ  :  # apt-get install anarchism
                                    `. `'` 

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