[lbo-talk] Desktop Publishing for people who don't know what they are doing

brandelune at gmail.com brandelune at gmail.com
Sat Apr 9 18:03:24 PDT 2011

On 9 avr. 11, at 12:53, Fernando Cassia wrote:

> On Fri, Apr 8, 2011 at 10:46 PM, <brandelune at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Indeed. And if people donated to free software as much as they spend on proprietary crapware then there are plenty of things that would be fixed and improved.
> No need to "donate". You do know that most of the coders of "free
> software" are on a company payroll, don´t you?.

If you mean that a lot if not most free software coders have day jobs, then yes, that's a fact. If you mean that most free software coders are paid to write free software, then I think we don't live in the same universe.

The people who make a living by writing free software code are a very small minority in the free software communities.

Last but not least, "coding" is only one part of developing professional grade free software. Documentation writing, localization, hardware testing, debugging, promotion, all those activities require time and are thus very costly. I am not even talking about the development infrastructure and organization.

The reason why OOo was so successful is that there were hundreds of volunteer testers, documentation writers, localizers who worked totally for free and who were not very much supported by Sun and then Oracle. That's money Sun or Oracle did not have to spend.

>> I've personally donated €100 to LibreOffice the day it was announced,
> You do know about Novell´s involvement, right?. And you do know that
> Novell was the first to "fork" OO.o with their "Go-OO" build of
> OpenOffice, right?. And you do know as well that "Libre" office has
> been already polluted to include "Mono" hooks, right?. (Mono as in
> "Novell´s re-implementation of the Microsoft .Net runtime")

I fail to see the problem. Mono as in gpled ? C# as in ANSI standard ? Was there a problem when the GNU project released Classpath for Java compatibility ? Was there a problem when OpenOffice was released with support for a proprietary binary format like MS Doc ? And wait a second, Novell as in Suse ? Which is the basis for one of the best Linux distributions around, Open Suse ?

So, yes, I know all that and I could not care less. And I also know that neither Sun nor Oracle respected their promise to create a NPO for furthering OOo's development. Sun and Oracle abused individual contributors who were not on their payroll and rarely accepted contributions that did not fit the corporate agenda (or whatever agenda they had).

I also know that with Oracle, OpenOffice is not present in most FOSS events. Oracle focuses on it's core business (DB, including MySql) and does not give a damn about a lot of free software they got from Sun's aquisition.

> I´m staying with OpenOffice.org.
> But hey, it´s a matter of personal choice.

Indeed, and most volunteer contributors to OOo have personally chosen to move to LibreOffice. The reason being that LibreOffice does not require contributors to sign a "contributor agreement" where all the individual copyrights are also granted to the controlling corporation.

I've done localization, testing, user support, promotion for OOo and every time I wanted to have something committed I had to also grant copyright on my work to Sun or Oracle. That sucks. And I've also donated money so that the volunteer group of Mac/Aqua porters could buy themselves a Mac machine because at that time, Sun did not give a damn about development on the Mac and we only had the X11 port or the (then) Java based NeoOffice.

> PS: only the Database GUI module in OO.o is written in Java. The rest
> of the apps are compiled C/C++. And it isn´t slow at all. You must
> have an ancient computer. Works like a charm in my 1.6 Ghz Atom
> powered netbook with 1GB RAM.

Starting MS Office (2008) on a Mac is considerably faster than starting NeoOffice (latest patch). Not only the first instance of the app but further instances too.


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