Sun and FSF

I'm at FOSDEM in Brussels this weekend, Europe's largest and most important gathering of Free software developers. I can't think of a better venue at which to announce that Sun has become a Patron of the Free Software Foundation.

Both organisations have been promoting software freedom in different ways for more than two decades, albeit in different ways and with different objectives. With the announcement that the Java platform will be licensed under the GPL, it seemed obvious that the connection should become stronger. This news is the start of a new phase of our collaboration and I'm delighted to have been involved in making this happen with my colleagues and our friends at the FSF. What a great way to celebrate Sun's 25th birthday.

Comments:

[Trackback] Simon Phipps, the Chief Open Source Officer at Sun Microsystems, announced on his blog that Sun Microsystems became an official supporter of the Free Software Foundation (FSF), with the 'title' of Patron of FSF. Tha announcement has been made d...

Posted by Personal notes on February 24, 2007 at 06:40 PM PST #

It seems that the Internet has made 'cheap software' impossible. I work for IBM (though I do not represent them); we seem to have Websphere Community Edition ('free software') and Websphere ('expensive software'), but we no longer have OS/2, and Lotus Smartsuite (though still on the books) is no longer actively marketed. Go Linux ! Go OpenOffice.org ! Actually, 'cheap software' is now video-games. I wonder who makes those ? I wish them well at it, but it's a different business.

Posted by Chris Ward on February 27, 2007 at 07:36 AM PST #

I would tend to side with Chris Ward, maybe, although he was not explicit about his opinion. What the heck is wrong with a software product that is delivered with the source code, but where the creator retains the option to charge a price for "those who can afford to pay"? ( Commercial use, or for-profit corporations, etc). For non-commercial use, or education & research, or public sector, the price would be nothing. The GNU GPL makes it extremely difficult for the creator of a product to make money, more difficult than many people realize. Most people who support the GPL have not read it carefully.

Posted by Robert on February 27, 2007 at 10:56 AM PST #

Thanks to Sun for your support of the FSF. Your contribution, both financial and with Java and other free software, is a real help to Free Software and the GNU Project.

Posted by Matt Lee on February 27, 2007 at 05:57 PM PST #

Robert, what about redhat don't they make good money? and they are not the only one out their selling services around open source products.

Posted by yazan on February 27, 2007 at 07:22 PM PST #

Robert, misses the point. The GPL does permit software to be commercialized. The real issue at stake is the freedom or lack of freedom in this new areas of human expression, computing language and the spawn of computing language which includes the internet. Imagine if your language of choice was burdened with rules that only permitted the utterance of certain phrases, if certain "words" were forbidden, and if the "alphabet" was partially owned by corporations who would rent it out or leave it to lie fallow at their option. Such is the world that could be if Microsoft and its relatives were left unchecked. Go Sun!!

Posted by Aaron|Feldman on February 27, 2007 at 09:07 PM PST #

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