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Username: stewart
Realname: Stewart Brodie
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Recent comments

On Acorn celebs to mark 30th anniversary with reunion:

Having a separate event for the geeks would be fine, but I don't think it would be right to have non-employees at a staff reunion. Looks like I won't be going anyway, as I'll out the country on the date concerned.

 is a RISC OS Userstewart on 4/2/08 1:02AM
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On RISC OS skills database website launches:

Is it possible to sign up as being available to moan 148 hours a week? :-)

 is a RISC OS Userstewart on 2/2/08 10:06PM
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On ROS must open up to survive says Wild:

No, that's not what I meant - in that case, they are totally separate communicating programs - which is OK provided that no parts of the server code are linked into such a frontend.

I'm sure some of the biggest open source nutters would like to extend the GPL's invasiveness to include such systems, though! :-)

 is a RISC OS Userstewart on 02/08/06 01:08AM
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On ROS must open up to survive says Wild:

In reply to GuestX:

"The GPL keeps software completely open from the author right the way through to the end-user. "

That in itself is not the problem. The problem is the infectious nature of the licence, which is why many companies will not touch any GPL software at all in the first place (including my current employer and past employers). GPL software can never be part of a larger solution that is not entirely GPL licenced (basically speaking anyway, and the LGPL isn't as "lesser" as some people would have you believe either). You may believe that this is a good thing. I think it's crazy.

--Stewart

 is a RISC OS Userstewart on 01/08/06 10:21PM
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On ROS must open up to survive says Wild:

I don't see how it is realistic to merge two OS source trees that have diverged over so many years. It was a very difficult and long drawn out process trying to merge some of the mess caused by the ANC and ART branches of RISC OS diverging over a much shorter timeframe.

I agree that open source is by no means a panacea - there are still many ways of killing it all off: e.g. lack of quality control, choosing an inappropriate licence such as GPL (unless it's dualled with modified BSD or similar), the remaining developer(s? ;-) getting bored and just going away.

I would say that the idea that other developers of other OSes would pinch ideas from the source is loopy, to be honest. RISC OS *in itself* has nothing to offer that other OSes don't already have in a far more sophisticated form already (for many years). The quoted example, the Window Manager, is a huge amount of ARM assembler that achieves relatively little in terms of functionality. It's a half-way house between a rectangle manager and a GUI environment and it does neither particularly well. It's major plus point for users is that it enforces various common traits in applications (icon bar positioning, window furniture behaviour), whilst that is also a weakness (lack of flexibility (cannot put the icon bar down the side of the screen instead of the bottom, for example), cannot customise behaviour of furniture easily, cannot use the furniture within your application). Thus you can get inter-operable applications with a common look-and-feel and that helps users, but ...

Users don't care about the inner workings of the OS directly - they *do* care about it indirectly, even if they don't know that they do. Users cannot and should not be expected to understand the inner workings of the OS. Consequently, I don't believe they realise just how awkward it is to write Wimp applications (particularly those that interact with the hardware) given the architecture of the OS.

 is a RISC OS Userstewart on 28/07/06 00:49AM
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