Why people accept what Mr. Kuhn terms "unacceptable"

Story: Proprietary Licenses Are Even Worse Than They LookTotal Replies: 12
Author Content
caitlyn

Apr 10, 2010
10:08 AM EDT
Do you know why people accept the terms of licenses Mr. Kuhn terms "unacceptable". In the case of Apple it.s because things mostly "just work" with no hassles and no worries. Yes, Apple's license makes it clear you can only use Apple software on Apple hardware. People who own Apple hardware don't care; it just works. People who don't own Apple hardware aren't Apple customers. Apple doesn't care about them at all. How do all those "horrible restrictions" in the Apple license hurt the typical Apple user? From the user's perspective they don't. They are meaningless. Mr. Kuhn is espousing Free Software philosophy that 99% of the planet couldn't care less about.



I'm beginning to think Apple has a point and FOSS, while philosophically superior, sometimes produces inferior results. Case in point: I have an HP Laserjet 1020 which works fine under Linux most of the time. Well, it always has, but today I plugged it into my netbook running Ubuntu 9.10 and nothing happened. Fired up CUPS which couldn't find the printer. lsusb sees it just fine. Checked in synaptic and the proper drivers and firmware are all installed. Hmmm... Did a Google Linux search and found this gem:

https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/linux/+bug/491133

It seems I haven't printed from the netbook, only the desktop, since I upgraded the netbook to Karmic. It also seems that a bug classified as "high priority" by the Ubuntu people has had no movement whatsoever in nearly two months. I guess I've run into the same attitude at Canonical that has pissed me off before: we'll get it in the next release. Not fixing the current, supported release seems to be just fine with Canonical. For me, with Ubuntu, this was strike three. They're out of here for good. Actually, this was about strike 12 but since they are so d@mned popular I keep giving them chances. Silly me.

So we FOSS supporters get all on our high horses about proprietary software while we keep offering "Linux for the masses" that, in reality, is an oft broken mess, at least in the case of Ubuntu. I am back to believing Andrew Wyatt was right when he called the distro "garbage salad". This is a perfect example of what he was describing. No wonder distros like Linux Mint and Crunchbang are moving to a Debian base instead of an Ubuntu base.

Am I ready to run out and buy a Mac? At this point, just about. My frustration level this morning was just that high and I've been using Linux for 12 years as my main OS. Imagine what Joe and Jane User must think when they are subjected to nonsense like this.

bigg

Apr 10, 2010
10:24 AM EDT
> Am I ready to run out and buy a Mac? At this point, just about.

FOSS isn't for everyone. If the Mac works better for what you want to do, then you better go buy a Mac. It wouldn't make sense not to do so.

FOSS is what it is. If it's not what you're looking for, then either start a company that turns FOSS into what you are looking for, or buy something else.

Interesting note: If you go to http://www.cups.org, the first thing it says is

Quoting:CUPS is the standards-based, open source printing system developed by Apple Inc. for Mac OS® X and other UNIX®-like operating systems.
caitlyn

Apr 10, 2010
11:54 AM EDT
@bigg: CUPS isn't the problem. The printer works just fine on SalixOS. The problem appears to be unique to the udev implementation in Ubuntu. That makes it an Ubuntu bug.

The whole point is that I'm a Linux/FOSS advocate. It's darned hard to advocate something which is broken. Linux isn't broken. Ubuntu is. Unfortunately the Canonical hype machine has much of the non-geek world thinking Linux==Ubuntu. That's unfortunate. Most people just want to get work done. Ubuntu gets in the way of that.

I've polished the rant into an article which is now published by O'Reilly. Hopefully it will show up on LXer.com soon. In the meanwhile see: http://broadcast.oreilly.com/2010/04/ubuntu-is-a-poor-standa...
gus3

Apr 10, 2010
12:16 PM EDT
@caitlyn:

It could also be a conflict between libusb (now used by CUPS) and the kernel usblp module. Try "blacklist usblp" in /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf (or whatever applies in Ubuntu), then "rmmod usblp".

This switch in CUPS' infrastructure has bitten lots of people, myself included. Doing the above made my printer spring to life. I had to do a heavy-handed Google search to find the problem and its fix. There has been very little chatter about it.
tuxchick

Apr 10, 2010
12:21 PM EDT
bigg, that is quite amusing that Apple takes the credit for CUPS. (I ran across that same page yesterday.) CUPS was an independent project run by Michael Sweet from way back in the late 90s, and he also had a commercial edition, ESP Print Pro. Apple bought CUPS two years ago, and now Mr. Sweet works for Apple.
gus3

Apr 10, 2010
2:05 PM EDT
As a follow-on to my previous comment:

The more I think of it, the more I put the fault for this at the feet of Apple, not the distro maintainers. Such an incompatible infrastructure change should have had a lot more noise made about it. Then again, Apple management wants to make things as difficult as possible for FOSS users.
caitlyn

Apr 10, 2010
2:52 PM EDT
@gus3: It's most definitely not a CUPS issue and Apple gets absolutely none of the blame. lsusb did not list a description for the printer so the problem is at the basic USB device detection level.
tuxchick

Apr 10, 2010
6:49 PM EDT
Just once I wanted Apple to blame. You folks took all the fun out of this.
caitlyn

Apr 10, 2010
7:06 PM EDT
I know, tc. I'm a party pooper.

You want fun? New Doctor Who episodes premiere in the U.S. next week. Organize a Doctor Who party with appropriate refreshment and leave all the tedious thinking behind :)
Steven_Rosenber

Apr 10, 2010
7:09 PM EDT
Caitlyn - thanks for the CUPS tip. I, too, have an HP LaserJet 1020, and this will come in handy for my setup.
azerthoth

Apr 10, 2010
10:11 PM EDT
/me is eagerly awaiting meeting the new Doctor.
caitlyn

Apr 10, 2010
11:16 PM EDT
I've been watching the five episodes from 2009 on DVD in anticipation. Four down, one to go. I have some William Hartnell season 1 episodes transferred from VHS to DVD (not released on DVD yet) that I may break out between now and then since I haven't seen those episodes in years. The Ood were based on the Sensorites so that is first on my list.
tracyanne

Apr 11, 2010
1:44 AM EDT
Quoting:New Doctor Who episodes premiere in the U.S. next week. Organize a Doctor Who party


Friday 16th at midnight on ABC iView, over here. See you at the party

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