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Permanent link to archive for Saturday, September 16, 2000. Saturday, September 16, 2000

A new format 

OPML 1.0. "The purpose of this format is to provide a way to exchange information between outliners and Internet services that can be browsed or controlled through an outliner."

Jacob Levy asks a couple of good questions about OPML, and I answer them.

A utility script for Radio UserLand people, converts a folder of files from the old format to the new.

Miscellaneous Links o' the Day 

Lynn Siprelle: "I have the radio station the beancounters who pushed me out of broadcasting in 1992 took away from me."

Disturbing Search Requests. "This site is dedicated to misleading search requests."

Truth be told, I am the reason that Andre's site is so well-associated with wiener schnitzel. (There I go again!)

A message to Frontier developers 

I'm going "on the road" more, virtually speaking, to spread the news of Radio UserLand to more people.

There are some Frontier developers that don't know something important. If you're confused by what we're doing, and you work in Frontier, please read this carefully.

The leading edge in Frontier development is in Radio UserLand right now. It is basically Frontier with the outliner on top in the user interface instead of the object database. No Manila, and no mainResponder. A limit of 5 simultaneous net connections. Radio.root and Frontier.root are virtually identical. There's a Developers sub-menu of the Radio menu that lifts the hood, when you do that, you'll see something totally familiar.

If you're looking for improvements in Frontier, follow the Radio UserLand project. All the improvements we're making to the basic functionality of Radio UserLand will flow back into Frontier. In other words, view these improvements as improvements that are coming in Frontier 7.0, which will be released shortly after Radio UserLand 7.0, and will be provided at no charge to current Frontier subscribers.

Your experience is needed and welcome. There are already a few Frontier experts in the loop, and they seem pretty happy. The pace of features and fixes is very high. Please don't miss this opportunity to influence the direction.

An example, this morning I added a feature to the Add Link command in the HTML menu. If you use Frontier to edit a website, this functionality might make you say "Oh Yeah!" or "Oh Geez!". I want to know which it is. Often people don't express a negative opinion until it's too late. You've heard me say this before. I'm saying it again.

What about Manila? 

Raymond Yee wants to know what our focus on Radio UserLand means for Manila.

Luckily I have something to say about that.

And something else.

The open source discussion continues 

Eric Sink: Open Source vs Free Software. An interesting piece. Yes I have been confused and irritated even appalled by the divisive and exclusionary tactics of some open source advocates. But I think it's very clear what open source is, if you stick to basics, it's totally simple, and I beg to differ, it is about freedom, and RMS's philosophy, while understandable, is not, at least not for me.

It only gets complex when people attach "riders" or their own agendas to the definition of open source. For example, I was tempted to add an anti-patent part to my definition of open source, but that's orthogonal. I don't think patenting is consistent with open source, but it cannot be part of the definition of open source, imho.

Emphatically, open source is not new! Source releases are part of programming. What's new is the marketing hype, and it's not so new anymore.

Here's the line I draw. Programmers generally can work with each other. The problems come when outsiders try to grab our work for their own purposes. As I read it, that's what inspired Stallman, and it inspires me too. The technology industry is not about technology. At best it pays lip service to technology. That's how the attention of the open source "movement" got focused on Microsoft, wrongly.

Companies. Why does the software conversation always revolve around companies? What other artform forces its artists to become CEOs to be taken seriously (and even then not). Stop everything and read this section of a very early DaveNet piece, written long before anyone had heard of open source. This has been bothering me ever since I got started in the software business. A huge disconnect. I don't want to work for a company. I like making software. Now what?

Most programmers give away source code. Even Microsoft programmers participate. So to draw exclusive lines that disempower some programmers in favor of others could be an expedient way to make money (amazingly) but it doesn't further the cause of more good software for the people.

Anyway, let's keep discussing. Every time an idea goes over the wall, in either direction, the wall becomes less of a barrier.

Eric picks up the thread, and I respond.


Last update: Saturday, September 16, 2000 at 7:19 PM Eastern.

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