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Re: Apple vs. Free Software Foundation

Steve Davis writes:

  >When something as broad and necessary as "freedom" is at stake, it is
  >important to know who your friends are.

When my son asks me "What does 'fair' mean?", I had to answer: "It depends
on who says it."  When someone says "That's not fair!" or "I think that's
fair", most often they are not weighing abstract values; they are deciding
whether the situation is favorable to them, and describing it with charged
vocabulary to sway all other parties to their point of view.

Patents on machines are fair; but patents on really useful algorithms --
that I could actually use in my code (if it weren't for that damn patent)
-- aren't.  Why?  Because I don't like it (and I really, really don't like
it :( ).

Companies act like people in many ways: they grow; they have goals; they
protect their interests; and they ignore that which they don't believe will
effect them.  But like animals and machines, it is important not to
anthropomorphize companies.  No company is anyones 'friend'.

I speak for neither Apple, nor FSF, but it is easy to see why they have
taken the courses that they have.  Neither path has led to its promised

FSF is not punishing Apple.  It _is_ punishing programmers, individuals,
human beings who have a job to do.  In fact, the FSF is punishing me, since
I have spent no small amount time programming Apple computers (and no small
amount of time porting GNU tools to them).  Has Apple's strategy of closely
guarded secrets proved the correct one?  Let's call up Bill Gates and ask

In summary, I find your statements to be an undisguised attempt to hang
your unrelated personal agenda from a charged political situation.  Do I
think that's fair?  People have been doing it for centuries.

I may not approve of Apple's technological strategy, but (even though it is
not a human being) I will defend its right to _its_ privacy.