Archive for January, 2006

GPLv3 – the goodies

Ok, buy enough posts over the net on GPLv3. Now my 5 cents on the content issues. I have three of them:

1. Digital restrictions management. First of all, prostate I sincerely hope that the term chosen by Stallman gets more widespread acceptance. It’s not about rights but restrictions, since DRM typically extends “rights” out of copyright’s scope. That GPL is incompatible with DRM should be clear thus by definition: GPL covers copyright and will never expand any further. The notion that GPLv3 code does not constitute an “effective technological measure” is a nice direct reference to the critical language in EU copyright directive: if it would be “effective”, then all the DRM restrictions in that directive would apply. Now, the directive is circumvented.

2. Patent licensing. The default approach taken is very good. There are other licenses, which try to prevent the starting of patent lawsuits. Stallman seems to assume that suits may have other purposes than attacking free software. The approach should make the big patent holders feel safer with their portfolios without underminig free software in any way.

3. Copyleft provision. It is now clearer and, most importantly, the coverage is not extended. There were fears that they would try to extend copyleft to network (or public) use on the Internet (client-server model). Again, big companies should feel safe that the client-server model continues to be an accepted free software business model.

All in all, the content of the current draft is great and I do support it. My major reservations concern the language used.

Published in: Law, Tech | on January 31st, 2006 | No Comments »

Last week 78K, sun in sight

Whoa. The last week produced a total of 78K with one pretty nice 20K run on friday. It’s definitely getting better now. Next week I’ll fly to California for an intensive week.

Published in: Sports | on January 31st, 2006 | No Comments »

Last week some more illness, this week better

At the end of the last week our whole family had sort of throw-up sessions. Stomach down, there little fever etc. I also lost some 3kg of weight. The week ended up with just 38K. Now this week started slowly but is looking promising. Monday 4K, tue 10K, wed 14K and thu 10K, in sum the same as last week with three more nights to go.

Published in: Sports | on January 27th, 2006 | No Comments »

Übercold – or, why I hate Finland, part II

Ok, cialis sale another bunch of reasons I hate Finland (see also part I). Today, pharmacy yesterday and the day before we’ve had something like -20 degrees celcius. It’s impossible to run or practise anything. It’s painful to just get from home to work. South America, Australia,… you are in my mind right now. Even Southern Europe would work. I know you could do the quick escape, but then… the family again. Fuck. Something must change.

Published in: Sports | on January 20th, 2006 | No Comments »

GPL Menace

Like everyone else, ailment I received my copy of the first discussion draft of GPL v3 some hours ago. Jesus, ask I must say. It is too early to go into the details but just look at these numbers:

GPLv2 has 2965 words and is generally considered to include ambiguous language. GPLv3 (this draft) has 4569 words meaning over 50% increase in length. To compare, Microsoft Community License has just 561 words and that license is in my humble opinion the clearest copyleft license ever.

While the draft tries to clear old ambiguities, it also succeeds in introducing new unclear concepts and language (in the middle of few odd typos). For example, “propagate” seems to replace “use” but a quick reading makes me feel like it means something more. Further, the old license used rather consistently term “Program” but this one adds “covered work” in the mix. Then there is a new concept called “subunit” – in addition to the old “components” and “parts”. Why must they use so many terms? And – unfortunately reminding me of the Artistic license – in the section titled “compatibility” the draft gives 5 new additional options anyone can add for a “compatible” license distributed within a GPL package… (clear? – not. legal risks? – yes)

I didn’t go into the basic language yet, which seems to favor the use of exceptions and negations…. take this passage as an example: “DRM is fundamentally incompatible with the purpose of the GPL, which is to protect users’ freedom; therefore, the GPL ensures that the software it covers will neither be subject to, nor subject other works to, digital restrictions from which escape is forbidden.” – The beginning of that sentence looks understandable but what the hell are they meaning with the rest. What is DRM that allows “escape” to begin with (since that seems to be ok)?

In short, the draft looks like a GPLv2 mixed with GPL-FAQ. It tries to give something to everyone without being clear, short and consistent. It’s not the good old statement written by Stallman. This one is a messy open source hack in need of serious revisions – starting from the language.

Published in: Law, Tech | on January 17th, 2006 | 1 Comment »