Brian "Krow" Aker (krow) wrote,
Brian "Krow" Aker

You would eat fish right? Open Source Software

Waiter: "We have our vegetarian Pad Thai on the menu."

Me: "Can you ask the chef if he puts fish sauce in it?"

Waiter goes off and comes back.

Waiter: "Yes there is fish sauce in the Pad Thai."

Me: "Do you have anything which is vegetarian?"

Waiter: "Well I know people who say they are vegetarian who eat fish..."

Me: "Dude, your friends are not vegetarians."

The argument can go down hill from here. Its simple, if you eat meat, even only sometimes, you aren't a vegetarian.

Its popular in some circles to call yourself a vegetarian. Some people just want to cut down on their meat and find that its an easy way to not eat meat for a night. Some people believe it creates an aura around them.

They aren't vegetarians though.

Open Source software is similar. Weeks ago I saw Chris's comments on his take on how others want to use the label, but don't actually want to release their software under an open source license.

Their software isn't open source. It may be great software, but its not open source. The software may run on, make use of, or refer to open source software, but unless the source is under an open source license (and personally I raise my eyebrow to anything that is not Mozilla, BSD or GPL licensed, the major licenses).

Business software? Time bomb software? Shared source? There are all sorts of gadgets that people have come up with in the attempts to be evasive.

The MySQL database had a funny license like this early on. Thankfully it is long gone. Monty and David learned that to be counted as open source they needed to put the database under an open source license.

They did, and it worked out fine.

If you eat meat, you aren't a vegetarian. If your software isn't published under an open source license, its not open source.

And what happens when you find someone who is twisting the words around? It means that what they are doing isn't open source and they are looking for a justification to use the label. Or they are trying to get you to pay for something you probably can get for free.

The more you hear the dance in their voice, the more you know something is up.

And on that note, I hear a garden burger calling my name...

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