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Permanent link to archive for Wednesday, August 23, 2000. Wednesday, August 23, 2000

What is open source? 

DaveNet: Are you an open source developer?

A perfect example of how a gatekeeper takes advantage of open source. Is it open source if it's so heavily politicized or has it become something else? What if you believe in love not war? Can you be an open source developer without endorsing the death penalty for Microsoft? Why do so many agendas have to be attached to acts of simple generosity? Is it OK if your software is used in acts of war?

BTW, thanks for all the great email. A lot of developers want to talk about this stuff for sure. I should have asked the questions a long time ago, but there are people who get angry with me for even asking what open source is. That's their problem, it used to be mine. I wrote a piece yesterday saying I'm going to ask all the questions I want to. Making it personal will only double my resolve to get to the bottom of the issues.

Next question. Did open source software exist before the term was coined?

Brent kicks butt 

I just used Radio UserLand to browse a discussion group for the first time. I saw a message that I wanted to respond to. I right-clicked on it and chose Reply from the popup menu. A window opens. Enter my response. Save. Edit. Save. I don't think it can get much easier than this. Voila. Two-Way-Web.

Also, just to show we have a sense of humor, the default icon for discussion group messages is the cow skull. To the people who don't like it, you can customize it.

The new features, and there are lots of them, will go out through updates to Radio UserLanders later this evening.

After many fruitless hours 

I had to rewrite a tricky bit of code in the cloud to handle larger numbers of files and then forgot how everything was configured, but now I have the basic directory stuff working, and am going to start work on dressing it up visually and adding the rocket science.

Here's the directory for I know the URL sucks.

Kind of plain Jane, eh? But here's why it's so cool. It's just an outline, the whole site is rendered in less than a second from one document, that's usable as a bookmarks file on its own. No scaling issues, everyone who edits one of these has their own machine.

There's your P2P equation, it assumes the person using the machine has a mind. Intel should take note. The revolution that started Intel, the personal computer, is the secret. Hey Intel, there's a person out there!

Don Hopkins 

"I'm trying to cause some trouble for Adobe's lawsuit against Macromedia. Turns out I've implemented prior art that invalidates their tab window palette, several times over. I've used tabs for window managers, for UniPress Emacs 2.20 (a commercial product), for a visual PostScript debugging environment, and published a couple of papers about them.

"There is some irony in the Adobe's patent being invalidated by prior art documented in a paper about a visual PostScript debugging environment. Check out this software, which has a PostScript stack holding objects in windows with tabs that you can drag on and off the stack, and manipulate by opening up editable tree views of PostScript data structures."

Morning stories 

Sony exec: "We will develop technology that transcends the individual user. We will firewall Napster at source -- we will block it at your cable company, we will block it at your phone company, we will block it at your ISP. We will firewall it at your PC." Police state.

Not to be outdone by David Brown's Zope-Radio screen shot, Brent Simmons provides a screen shot of Radio UserLand/Mac editing his Manila site and its discussion group. Brent says "When you expand a site, you can edit the home page, messages, various templates, etc. just by double-clicking. Everything is bookmarkable and re-organizable."

On the FoRK list, Lane Becker, president of DeepLeap, says that after announcing they were going to shut down, they're getting offers to be bought! Go go go.

Results from Monday's What is RDF? survey.

The fallacy of wishful thinking 

WSJ: "Mr. Gelsinger, however, argues that people havenít yet thought of the best uses for P-to-P, likening todayís situation to the moment Marc Andreessen created the first popular Web browser, then called Mosaic. 'Back when Mosaic came out, no one envisioned Yahoo! and eBay,Ē Mr. Gelsinger said. 'Thatís where we are today.'"

Most grand visions turn out otherwise. They said the same things about Push Technology and Java. He hopes someone else figures it out. Usually it doesn't work that way.

BTW, the killer app is music.

"Angry with me" 

Since there are an unusually large number of people reading this site who are "angry with me" at least indicated by emails and posts on the DG, I thought this would be a good time to post an invitation to revisit the TranceFest we had here in July.

It can save a lot of time arguing about who's right, or who's upset, or who means well or not, to recognize that all of us are running different programs, even different operating systems. What you see from your pov, while totally valid, is almost certainly not what I see, which is also totally valid.

If you liked that, here's another TranceFest asking why there are no women in the picture, and some funny stories, and if you poke around you'll find that there's a surprise.

Radio UserLand's first badge 

This site is edited with Radio UserLand, the first personal Web Application server for Windows and Macintosh.

It's also available as a shortcut on any UserLand-hosted Manila site as "radioBadge".


Last update: Wednesday, August 23, 2000 at 8:29 PM Eastern.

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