Comments on: Proprietary Software in and Open Source World Linux. GNU. Freedom. Sun, 13 May 2018 18:21:35 +0000 hourly 1 By: » Blog Archive » Points of Clarification Wed, 19 Apr 2006 03:30:50 +0000 [...] -Proprietary Software in an Open Source World [...]

By: Aaron Tue, 18 Apr 2006 20:44:29 +0000 TuxGirl-

You can play MP3s, DVDs and other proprietary formats without proprietary software. However, use of many of these formats is illegal unless you purchased the codecs. Plain and simple. DVDs uses a licensed codec and encryption/decryption algorithm that must be purchased. MP3s also use a licensed codec. In both of these examples, neither codec is open, and as such, the codecs are no where to be found on any of my systems.

By: Gary Tue, 18 Apr 2006 20:04:36 +0000 I have no problem with the idea of running proprietary software in user space. There are plenty of good reasons to run Java on FreeBSD, or Oracle on Linux. Come to that, I don't mind running a proprietary OS: I do use a Mac, after all.

I don't like the idea of closed-source, binary-only, NDA-encumbered drivers in kernel space or in the base system [1] on an otherwise open-source OS, though. On that point, Theo DeRaadt got it right.

Regarding mp3s and DVDs, I don't view lame or mplayer or ogle or vlc as "proprietary". I do prefer Ogg Vorbis over mp3, and I do prefer the Mac for watching DVDs, but there are plenty of open-source solutions for both.

[1]Remember, I'm more likely to be using a BSD than a Linux at any given moment. The "base system" is a BSD concept.

By: TuxGirl Tue, 18 Apr 2006 17:39:13 +0000 Interesting point, but with confused examples. Perhaps you can clarify your definition of "proprietary", because the last time I checked, I could play mp3s, dvds, and plenty of proprietary formats without using proprietary software. By the logic you appear to be using, opening a doc file in OpenOffice or AbiWord would constitute "using proprietary software", which, last i checked, it wasn't.

I'd be more worried about other pieces of GPLv3, but as, last I heard, the Linux kernel will not be going to v3, I'm not too worried as a whole...