GTK vs QTopia vs Android -

Marcelo Lira setanta at
Mon Nov 19 14:54:09 CET 2007

>>Free software is worth encouraging. Status quo closed source is not.
So, this is a problem, but it is ok to use free software to help the growth
of a company that profits in selling licenses for closed source software?

>>Trolltech GPL's most of the code it develops, which guarantees that
>>software will remain free ad infinitum. So ya, equating the copyright
>>assignment for both FSF and Trolltech is the same.
Yes, GPL guarantees that, but a library in GPL is not that useful for a
developer that sometimes have to do closed source apps. And please don't
start with the "I will not help anyone developing closed source" discourse,
since a number of free projects contributors have to do this, support
themselves with the money earned so they can continue contributing. Indeed
to have a full time open source programming job is a dream for most people I
Even FSF releases its libraries in LGPL, well, they created it. For this
there will be no practical possibility of community fork for Qt or Qtopia,
and weakening the force of the community in the decisions. I really believe
that you at Trolltech are not willing to abuse your position, but what if
Qtopia is the ubiquitous software platform to develop upon, so that there is
no thinkable alternative? What if all you good guys, that I could trust, get
out of Trolltech, and managers that could not get a job at Microsoft replace
you, and change the way you work with the developers? Can you guarantee that
this will never happen?
I doubt.
And a copyright assignment with FSF, a non-profit organization, and with
Trolltech, a regular company, is not the same. We cannot let the licenses
think for ourselves.

Surely that a lot of (obviously for profit) companies back the GTK+, Hildon
and other LGPL/other-permissive-license libraries and tools, but the sinergy
of sometimes conflicting interests is a good thing, and helps to avoid the
possibility of an unilateral control that benefits one part more than the

Lorn, I don't want to offend you and the company you work and surely love,
and the products that are technically great, I just don't think that this
model is strategically good for all projects.


Marcelo Lira dos Santos
@Ciência Livre:
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