the issue which needs to be solved somehow if ...
Feb 28, 2004
2:20 PM EDT
|(I am not the only one who is concerned about the following)
If Sun opens up Java and makes it under GPL, what will prevent MS to add new Microsoft Windows dependable features and making that MS-Java "de facto" Java, just by shipping it with Windows?
Just what MS did with HTML by adding MS-specific features to IE. MS may not be interested to keep it "write once, run anywhere"-type (WORA) of language anymore. Of course they would had to share the source for the extra features, but rest of the world wouldn't able to use those features without Wine, VMWare or something.
I have a feeling GPL is not suitable for Java. There would have to be some sections in the license, which will guarantee it would be WORA-type language in the future also. That would mean, it couldn't be a "real open source" type of license.
Feb 28, 2004
6:03 PM EDT
|"...and making that MS-Java "de facto" Java, just by shipping it with Windows"
If they do that they would have to release the source code to their changes and everyone else could easily use their improvements/changes. Then anyone could just write a java add-on which would provide compatability with their version of Java.
Feb 29, 2004
1:13 AM EDT
| If MS fork GPL Java and make their own additions.
1) They will be acknowledging and vindicating the GPL which will undermine their Windows vs Linux arguments.
2) They will be acknowledging and vindicating Java which will undermine their .NET vs Java arguments.
3) They will not be able to write proprietary software using it (unless they pay Sun for a commercial licensed version which won't allow them to embrace and extend it).
Microsoft wouldn't touch it with a barge pole
Feb 29, 2004
2:56 AM EDT
|"If they do that they would have to release the source code to their changes and everyone else could easily use their improvements/changes. Then anyone could just write a java add-on which would provide compatibility with their version of Java.":
And that java add-on would require Wine or VMWAre+Windows or something? That would ruin one of the most important characteristic Java tries to have; WORA. Just think they would add new commands to the langauge, new "reserved words", which would make external calls to VisualBasic or VisualBasic-scripts easily. Just what they did with IE by adding their DHTML-tags to the then long ago WORA-type of HTML.
"3) They will not be able to write proprietary software using it": So you think it would be good to have Trolltech type of license scheme then? Whenever something commercial is done with Java-language, one has to either provide the full source code to the application and release it under GPL, or then one has to pay royalties to Trolltech or in this case to Sun?
In the future we are screwed up with Trolltech also, if Qt and KDE wins "the battle" against gtk and GNOME. Then eventually every commercial product running in Linux would either had to be open source or pay royalties to Trolltech. Trolltech (think Sun) would somehow "own" Linux.
Just think what is somehow happening with PDA-Linux now. If PDA-Linux with Qtopia ( http://www.linuxdevices.com/news/NS2574901485.html ) becomes de facto Linux-PDA-OS and all Linux based mobile phones are shipped with it, it would be practically impossible to write commercial closed source applications without paying for license to Trolltech. Nowadays with Symbian, one can write commercial closed source applications without paying any royalties to Symbian, as it should be IMHO.
The situation with Java is currently better then that it would be with double licensing GPL+QPL like scheme.
With software libraries or programming languages LGPL (Library GNU Public License) is the only good open source license or I wouldn't call it really open source. LGPL then again overrules double license scheme.
If Java would then be LGPLed, I don't think if M$ would add "importVB", "tryVB", "catchVB" keywords to the Java-language, they would had to release the source code for VisualBasic and VBScript. They would only have to release the source code of how in JVM those keywords are translated to VB-calls and -callbacks.
"Microsoft wouldn't touch it with a barge pole": They did touch HTML and without a pole of any kind. There were critics with HTML+DHTML too, that it will make the Web un-functional, but did M$ care? Sure they did release the specs for this new MS-DHTML, so anyone can use those MS-HTML-tags, but just try to make MS-DHTML work in Linux-Firefox.
Would you really trust those mentioned three _assumptions_ to guarantee Java's WORA-feature in the future with an open source license also?
I think there has to be something more solid there. Like do LGPL the Java-language, but make exceptions to LGPL, for example: noone can with the source code nor commercially add any more keywords, reserved words, to the language without JCP's permission. http://www.jcp.org/
Also as important would be to get the source of the standard java.* packages open, LGPLed. Doing that alone would not allow to add extra keywords to the language itself. This message was edited Feb 29, 2004 7:26 AM
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