[racket] Clarification on licensing of Racket code?...

From: namekuseijin (namekuseijin at gmail.com)
Date: Sun Apr 8 13:52:21 EDT 2012

On Sun, Apr 8, 2012 at 7:42 AM, Rüdiger Asche <rac at ruediger-asche.de> wrote:
> I regret that the discussion has taken this strange turn and the ridiculing
> aspects, and I apologize for in parts being responsible for this
> development.
> This is not about me (or anybody else) having spare money to spend and
> wanting to finance somebody's home theater out of questionable moral or
> altruistic feelings.

How can you be surprised that the discussion has taken "a strange turn
and ridiculing aspects" when you yourself go on with ridiculous
statements like that?

I'm sure Oracle, IBM, Google, Amazon and several other don't spend
spare money financing somebody's home linux theater:  they finance
their own shared home linux theater.  Shared development, shared
maintenance costs, profit for all.  Do you see the economic benefits?

> A few years ago, the embedded market (which is what I am working in) still
> worked like this: You designed hardware and specified that the flash or
> Eeprom memory that this hardware provides must accomodate all the software
> that you needed to realize the task this hardware was set out to do. This
> (aside from your own code) covers things like RTOS, connectivity (networking
> and/or serial drivers), GUI libs (if the hardware had a display), self
> programming routines and so on. Also, you had to invest in tools that helped
> you glue everything together - compilers, IDEs, debuggers, and so on, some
> combined with special hardware (ICEs/emulators..), but all of this contained
> software that somebody had to write somewhere. Consequently, there was quite
> a diverse aftermarket of commercial companies who offered all of this -
> needless to say under the condition that the company could make a living off
> it. I as the person who glues everything together made the choice which
> tools/libraries to use - or even provide those myself (I used to do that,
> provide a TCP/IP stack for one of our systems), and the decision was
> strictly a gain-loss type of thing: Which provider has the least expensive
> solution that best suits your needs and can still survive on the agreed
> price. You would then buy all the necessary licenses and price your final
> product by your own expenses and the revenue you expect to make from the
> product.
> Now. A lot of the third party companies that provided exactly those
> components have gone out of business because of high-quality open source
> competition - it's kind of a vicious circle; when our competitors use
> Embedded Linux or FreeRTOS along with gcc and other open source tools, we
> just can't compete anymore when our product has to finance in the licensing
> cost for a commercial OS and/or compiler and consequently must reduce the
> costs and stop buying software and instead also go open source components,
> which in turn puts more companies out of business.
> So everybody who contributes to Open Software that may be used by commercial
> developers at the end of the day ruins the price of the very skilled work of
> software developers and thus saws off the branches of the tree that
> otherwise may have provided him a job outside the world of academia (whose
> finances mostly depend on arbitrary decisions of funding institutions like
> the NSF instead of real money paid by real people for real products).

So, you are one of those people burned by open-source software...

Here's the harsh business reality for you:  OSS is here to stay.

You're like one of those people refusing to change to new realities
brought forth by new technological developments.  Should all books
still be on paper because you have a press?  How to deal with
economics based on scarcity when we live in a world of cheap copying?
These are new realities that old businesses must cope with rather than
just wish the old good ways get back...

> So to all of those who make jokes about me wishing to pay somebody's home
> theater out of thankfulness: Make your jokes now but remember that in 10
> years when you DON'T have a job because 90% of all software will be open
> source by then and the rest is expected to be free as well. There won't be
> THAT many jobs in academia by then that allow you to write software and
> still get paid for it from someone.

I'm sure racket alone isn't the system my clients are expecting.  I
should leverage from that to bring forth the client's vision.  Surely
they'll be still willing to pay for that as much as they pay analysts
to come up with lots of papers depicting boxes and arrows...

Posted on the users mailing list.