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Re: A sad case [was Re: pkg_install patch for testing]
On Wed, Jul 01, 2009 at 04:12:24PM +0200, Dieter Baron wrote:
> In article <20090630164350.GL513%nef.pbox.org@localhost> Alistair wrote:
> : On Tue, Jun 30, 2009 at 06:10:46PM +0200, Joerg Sonnenberger wrote:
> : > (1) Accept upper case letters in license names as discussed here.
> : > If you disagree with this, discuss it in the thread.
> : I may not have mentioned this before, so I'd better send this now.
> : Yes, I know that you take a great pleasure in arguing with me, but
> : please stop, take a step back, and consider the ramifications.
> : If you go with case-sensitive license names, then modified-bsd and
> : modified-BSD are two different licenses. As are gnu-gpl-v3 and
> : gnu-GPL-v3. It is not a good idea to do this from a usability PoV,
> : since people tend to think of some license names in terms of acronyms
> : (BSD, MIT, GPL), and pkgsrc seems to have persuaded itself that only
> : lower case will be used internally, and death to all who oppose this.
> : So I'd urge you to try to think of some of the poor sods that you are
> : condemning to case-sensitivity hell, here, please. Or even to think
> : of yourself, fielding all those PRs which state "Wow, your tools do
> : not do what I want them to do all because of a capital letter?".
> The end user is supposed to copy the license name from the warning
> message pkg_add or make issue, or from the package Makefile. And yes,
> I think we can expect them to do so in a case sensitive manner.
To do that, a user would have had to have received an "error" from
pkgsrc that the license had not been specified. I'd like to fix that
"error" before it happens, in that we should make things as easy and
as flexible for the users as we can. I see this case-sensitivity as a
In real life, if I shout or say the words "modified-bsd" at someone,
there is no difference to the words themselves - merely the volume and
(perhaps) expression of the words. The words themselves have not
changed at all. Mirrorring that in our license handling, I don't see
any difference in the license itself (between "modified-bsd" and
"modified-BSD"), merely a difference in the case of the part after the
> As I've said to Joerg in a mail to tech-pkg on June 16th:
> > [...] We might expect (the few people who selectively
> > (dis)allow free licenses) to comply with our casing. We should not
> > expect users to have to change their existing setup. Allowing upper
> > case but being case sensitive fulfills both points, so I'm okay with
> > it.
> : Or I suppose you could point them at the documentation, which
> : is... where, exactly?
> It would probably be good if the pkg_add(1) manpage and the pkgsrc
> guide mentioned that license names are case-sensitive.
One thing I really don't understand is - what is the driving force
behind the need for case-sensitivity in licensing names?
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