CCL:G: License what you want. Open what you want. No comparison?
- From: "Egon Willighagen" <egon.willighagen :
- Subject: CCL:G: License what you want. Open what you want. No
- Date: Sun, 3 Feb 2008 15:40:42 +0100
Sent to CCL by: "Egon Willighagen" [egon.willighagen .. gmail.com]
On Feb 3, 2008 1:44 PM, Pablo Echenique echenique.p.:.gmail.com
> The Open Source movement, with which I agree in most essential points,
> is being increasingly infected with radical supporters which, like in
> Middle Age, ride every day to Jerusalem to kill the unholy Proprietary
There is no OpenSource *movement*... never existed, never will. So, it
can't be infected either. However, there are many people releasing
opensource software; and equally many opinions.
What is a problem, is that a lot of people do not understand licensing
issues. I'm sure some of you understand the difference between the GPL
and the LGPL... but certainly not all.
Another issue clouding the issues is the OpenSource versus
ProprietarySource is *not* about FreeSource versus CommercialSource.
A third issue causing trouble, particularly for science, if the
difference between OpenSource and OpenProjects. One can, without
trouble, dump some project as OpenSource; give it non-English
comments, and no documentation whatsoever, and it is no use to science
at all. It happens, really. On the other hand, a proprietary code base
might simply implement a detailed description of some algorithm
published in literature and discussed as such.
So, there are three orthogonal axis here, and you may find projects in
- open source versus proprietary source
- free source versus commercial source
- open projects versus closed projects
Finally, radical supporters are found in any 'group' of people, if you
really must create a couple of groups. I only need to say PRISM, and
the things must be clear...
> In my opinion, all development models MUST be tried before deciding
> which is best. And maybe the final, not so surprising answer is that
> the most efficiency is obtained in a world in which all options have
> at least one strong representant.
Umm... why one for each group? Why strong?
For many people who like OpenSource, it is the freedoms are the key
thing. I am not sure I like single strong representatives.
> Moreover, if Open Source is the only answer to scientific software, we
> will know it when we prove it, not when we declare it.
Science progresses by sharing thoughts and theories. Open Source is a
method of publishing what you are doing; and, I must make that clear,
a superior way of publishing an implementation than a PDF document is.
> However, I do not find anything unethical in the way a private firm
> such as Gaussian Inc. works. In the free market, nobody forces you to
> buy a product. You don't like Gaussian's performance, decisions, name,
> colour of the CD case, etc.? Just don't buy it. You have other
Well, there's actually a fourth axis: performant code versus slow code.
> I prefer to live in a world in which Gaussian exists, so I have one
> more option, which I can freely choose to take or not.
Exactly. That's what freedom is about.
> I use Gaussian,
> GAMESS, Aces and Dalton, and I consider Gaussian a good overall
> application. My University has voluntarily signed a contract with
> Gaussian Inc. in which the conditions of use are clearly stated. If I
> freely chose to break some of that conditions (like comparing results
> to other codes), it is perfectly licit that Gaussian takes the
> appropriate actions. It is the same that I would do.
Mind that some proprietary licenses (I have no clue about Gaussian
license; not speaking about that) have know to include clauses what
you may or may not do in terms of development (thus study!)
This is, I believe, clearly bad for science.