Subject: about consequences
To: None <firstname.lastname@example.org>
From: Timo Schoeler <email@example.com>
Date: 09/03/2006 11:31:26
wrt Charles M. Hannums email, the awakening it caused by shattering the
NetBSD developers universe, and the discussion about blobs, i'd like to
draw some conclucsions.
i) in stanza three in 'About the NetBSD Project' there's stated 'One of
the primary focuses of the NetBSD project has been to make the base OS
extremely portable.' .
due to the acceptance of blobs (there's no opinion on the majority of
developers on this, some developers like to use blobs if it suits their
needs, and a few deny them completely) this is no longer true. either
it's no longer a 'primary goal' or a lie that's spoken out deliberately.
both is not acceptable, at least if one (as an individuum or a project)
uses to have ideals and, if necessary, 'fight' for them.
it is very important wrt to blobs to be aware of the preferences of the
project as developer, user or afficinado. as it's in the state between
not quite told and half-official that NetBSD /will/ use blobs, NetBSD no
longer is acceptable for people that really do open source. Linux e.g.
is also no choice (besides multiple technical, philosophical and other
problems), because it uses blobs.
open source inherits (among other things) equality. this is no longer
given; furthermore, open source can be seen as one way out of slavery
(that's what most really mean if they state 'hey, turning away now means
Bill Gates wins!'), but this means to escape from hardware vendors'
slavery. there are vendors giving away good documentation of their
products, those are the ones to deal with. not the ones delivierung
black box blobs and equal hardware that only runs on x86.
that is why NetBSDs 'One of the primary focuses of the NetBSD project
has been to make the base OS extremely portable.' no longer is true.
TNF behaves like a vegetarian eating burgers, shouting 'hey, look, i'm a
ii) the discussion with and among developers shed a clearing light, or
enlightenment wrt the situation of the project. acceptance of
non-BSD-licensed code in the base system seems to be the way to go for
NetBSD. lack of leadership seems to be the way to go. lack of
organization seems to be the way to go (how many port maintainers are
not contactable? one? six? a dozen?).
iii) entanglement between TNF/TNP and commercial companies in a very
double-edged manner. there were cases were employees of this company
mailed back that the PR that was just filed is fixed in their internal
branch/fork, without the will to fix it for the public -- even if it was
just a five line patch. the main thing was to tell everybody that they
don't suffer from this bug. very childish.
so consequences are, as there's no solution in the near future to most
or all of the problems that exist neither the demonstration of will to
change this, to have a look at both the personal or corporate 'moral' or
'moral obligation' or ideals wrt open source and NetBSDs goals -- and
what survives in reality.
personally, i came to the conclusion that there's (a huge) imbalance.
after a conference on this weekend we decided to drop NetBSD for
internal use, external (customer) use and development. starting monday
we will migrate a few dozen customers away from NetBSD (most of them
running servers, and a few early appliances). our internal services
moved to other major BSDs or commercial UNIX months ago (as if it was
clear that something like this supernova happens and shows the status of
NetBSD). our soon to be released appliances, which were luckily
developed on two different BSDs, one of them being NetBSD, won't be
shipping based on NetBSD.
i'm a vegetarian, i don't eat burgers. it's as simple as that.
please remove our entry (RISCworks)  from the 'Consultants for hire'
 -- http://netbsd.org/Misc/about.html
 -- http://mail-index.netbsd.org/netbsd-users/2006/09/01/0050.html
 -- http://netbsd.org/gallery/consultants.html#riscworks
so long, and please send all the fish to the Linux guys.
Timo Schoeler | http://riscworks.net/~tis | firstname.lastname@example.org
RISCworks -- Perfection is a powerful message
ISP | POWER & PowerPC afficinados | Networking, Security, BSD services
GPG Key fingerprint = B5F6 68A4 EC45 C309 6770 38C4 50E8 2740 9E0C F20A
Frankie says: Relax