Robert Pogson

One man, closing all the windows.

Fighting for Freedom in Slovakia

  • May 09 / 2012
  • 39
technology

Fighting for Freedom in Slovakia

FSFE (Free Software Foundation Europe) is helping a Slovakian business fined for failing to use that other OS and IE for filing taxation information. It will be interesting to see whether or not the courts can order the Slovakian government to do IT the right way, with open standards for communication protocols and file formats.

e-government is a current issue in Europe with the European Commission setting up an organization to promote open standards for all purposes in IT.
“Share and reuse open source software, semantic assets and other interoperability solutions for public administrations.” Slovakia, it seems, is not yet aboard the train. Whatever the outcome of this case, the issues will be raised and that should improve the situation.

see Executive summary of the EURA case

39 Comments

  1. Robert Pogson

    oldman wrote, “Primitiveness is using shell scripts to string together command line utilities and thinking that XCFE4 is a desktop that is usable in this day and age. That was my point.”

    The whole world is going to simpler user-interfaces. That’s not primitive but practical. Even M$ is reverting to a simpler interface because they just cannot support the burden of that other OS. see this comparison

    oldman used to write, “it’s all about the applications”, but now he’s going on about the GUI… Form does not take priority over function for me. I will use whatever works and GNOME was too complex for me. XFCE4 is much simpler and gets the job done with much less code. GNOME used to be ~400 MB of code but has grown over the years. XFCE4 takes much less code and gives me access to all my applications/processes without getting in my way.
    “pogson@beast:~/Downloads$ dpkg –get-selections|grep xfce|wc
    54 108 1592
    pogson@beast:~/Downloads$ dpkg –get-selections|grep -i gnome|wc
    26 52 783
    pogson@beast:~/Downloads$ apt-cache search gnome|wc
    1068 8890 65320
    pogson@beast:~/Downloads$ apt-cache search xfce|wc
    134 1027 7677″

    See, I use XFCE4 and run apps with 54 packages. With the few apps that use GNOME libraries I still have 26 packages in use. GNOME/KDE both followed M$’s excruciating bloat rather than doing what’s necessary, my preferred way of operating. I remember when that other OS shipped on a few floppies and GNU/Linux did as well. Now that other OS takes a whole DVD but you can still get a nice distro on 1 CD, for example, KNOPPIX/. The Debian repository takes 71 CDs but a minimal system can still be set up in a few hundred MB. If it’s the apps that matter, less is more.

  2. oldman

    “I have 200 processes running on Beast at the moment. That’s not very primitive. I have 8 local applications with windows open, a similar number of web applications and a bunch of databases. Beast has 100gB+ of documents fully indexed. I have several other PCs on which I can call without leaving my chair…”

    And I am running over 1198 threads in 88 processes (proces bound programs are too heavy weight to be spawning all over the place IMHO) on my desktop not to mention multiple applications at the same time that the 5 virtual machines that I am working with as I write this. And I am signed on by RDP to several workstations as well.

    So what Pog!

    Primitiveness is using shell scripts to string together command line utilities and thinking that XCFE4 is a desktop that is usable in this day and age. That was my point.

  3. Robert Pogson

    oldman wrote, “Not everybody is willing or able to compute at the primitive level that you seem to function at”.

    I have 200 processes running on Beast at the moment. That’s not very primitive. I have 8 local applications with windows open, a similar number of web applications and a bunch of databases. Beast has 100gB+ of documents fully indexed. I have several other PCs on which I can call without leaving my chair…

    Very few would call that a “primitive level”. I have barely scratched the surface of the Debian repository. I would do more but I am getting old and have a blog and a huge yard to fix … Lately I have been welding scaffolding to paint some trim at the old homestead.

  4. oldman

    “To get what they want, they have to contribute something even if it’s only a wishlist. ”

    Nope. they just use it as is Pog. That is reality.

    “A few businesses doing that could run the whole infrastructure of FLOSS. ”

    Nope. there are plenty of tasks that FOSS can do or where doing it with FOSS involves more reinventing of the wheel than it is worth.

    “FLOSS is more efficient than non-FREE software. ”

    Given that you regularly mistake advanced function and feature for so called “bloat” that is a statement that IMHO you are simply not qualified to make. Not everybody is willing or able to compute at the primitive level that you seem to function at, and not everyone wants to write shell scripts to string together command line utilities. We have more important work to get done and tools to do it with efficiently. And on the desktop 90% of those tools are closed source, not FOSS.

  5. Robert Pogson

    oldman wrote, “the vast majority of FOSS users probably have zippo interest in contributing anything. Why should they? Assuming that the FOSS works for them they get something for nothing.”

    To get what they want, they have to contribute something even if it’s only a wishlist. Every little bit helps. Not every user needs to contribute. There are more than enough people in the world to use, create, modify, test, propagate… FLOSS. FLOSS is more efficient than non-FREE software. For example, SUN was able to buy the company producing StarOffice for less than it cost for one round of licences for M$’s stuff. A few businesses doing that could run the whole infrastructure of FLOSS. There are hundreds of businesses contributing to FLOSS so many others do not need to do much to enjoy the benefit. There are millons of FLOSS developers, some who do it full-time, others part time, paid or not. Google, for instance allows its developers X% of their time to work on whatever software they want and many work on FLOSS. That’s one of many ways Google pays for its use of FLOSS.

    In education there is are several projects where the main users are also the creators and they share with the world: Moodle course management system, GCompris (educational games for youngsters), Koha integrated library system,…

  6. oldman

    “The vast majority can only contribute by other means: documentation, education, distribution, bug-reporting, testing etc.”

    How much does all of the above really amount to in comparison to the act of creating and maintaining the application. I think that it is debatable. The reality of the situation is Pog, that the vast majority of FOSS users probably have zippo interest in contributing anything. Why should they? Assuming that the FOSS works for them they get something for nothing.

    It is these people who are the true parasites not the ones that you speak of.

  7. kozmcrae

    “As of June 30, 2009, we employed approximately 93,000 people on a full-time basis, 56,000 in the United States and 37,000 internationally. Of the total, 36,000 were in product research and development, 26,000 in sales and marketing, 17,000 in product support and consulting services, 5,000 in manufacturing and distribution, and 9,000 in general and administration. Our success is highly dependent on our ability to attract and retain qualified employees. None of our employees are subject to collective bargaining agreements. “

  8. Robert Pogson

    oldman wrote, “When you are actually contributing tcode to a project that is actually incorporated, then let us know.”

    Only a few percent of the world writes software. The vast majority can only contribute by other means: documentation, education, distribution, bug-reporting, testing etc.

    LibreOffice:
    “Come join our community, and contribute in any way you like:

    Develop code: if you’re a developer, work on code for the LibreOffice code base and extensions. Whether you’re a veteran code cruncher or you’re less-experienced and wanting to extend your skills within a large, experienced team that’s active 24/7, we’ve got work you can do (check out our “easy hacks”). You can also work on bug-fixing and submitting patches.
    Do quality assurance [QA]: you can triage, prioritize and do in-depth analysis of bug reports and feature requests. You can also do manual testing and test reporting, and take part in localization QA.
    Help produce documentation: work on user guides and LibreOffice’s built-in help system as part of the LibreOffice documentation team. Writing and reviewing are a key part of the workflow, but we are also recruiting people to help out in other ways: screenshot production, indexing…
    Do localization: help localize the LibreOffice user interface and help files into your language. Join our localization global mailing list and visit the l10n section of our wiki to see if there is already someone working on localization for the language you are interested in.
    Do user experience [UX] and visual design: Design provides the visual basis for any tool. In addition to the factual content, it is able to transport usability, quality and emotions. The LibreOffice Design Team dedicates its skills and creativity to improving LibreOffice by visual means, inside the office suite, in user interaction and at any place where the product, or the community behind it, is visible in public. Our team consists of professionals and ambitious amateurs in several areas. If you’re interested, and want to share and improve your knowledge by working collaboratively in an active and friendly team, join in.
    Do marketing: attend FOSS events as part of an official Foundation Team. Publicize LibreOffice and The Document Foundation in media, at fairs and other events, etc. Take part in creating content and coordinating activities for special marketing initiatives. Work on research (such as marketing and feature research for future versions, usability research, etc.)
    Do Web infrastructure administration and development: maintain and develop LibreOffice and Document Foundation online infrastructure: websites, servers, etc.
    Extensions and Templates: On our great Extension Center, still extensions that work for LibreOffice are not listed. It would be best to have as many on the site as possible. Find extensions for LibreOffice, add them to the site and update them when there are new versions. Templates are also needed.
    Be a generally-active community member: sign-up for our support mailing list and help out other users with their questions and problems. Patrol the project’s Web resources and fix or report errors.
    Donate money to finance the project: even if you don’t have time to do work for the project, you can still make a valuable contribution by making a donation to help fund the community’s work.”

    It’s not bushwah. It takes a lot more than code to make good software. e.g. M$ has 90K employees. How many are programmers?

  9. oldman

    “There are lots of parasites living off the sweat of those programmers. ”

    As opposed to moochers like you living off FOSS. Give us a break!

    As spare us the “I contribute bug reports” bushwah. That doesn’t amount to a hill of beans IMHO. When you are actually contributing tcode to a project that is actually incorporated, then let us know.

  10. Robert Pogson

    oiaohm wrote, “how much paid of that makes it to the programmers and developers working on it. Lot is lost to middle men.”

    Amen. Let’s do some calculation. For that other OS, M$ rakes in ~$20 billion per annum. They have 92K employees. That’s $217K each. Oops, only 35K are programmers. There are lots of parasites living off the sweat of those programmers. Then there’s server and business… That does not seem to me that the programmers are getting a fair shake. Indeed they are exploited.

  11. oiaohm

    Ivan what percentage of people pay in the first place for closed source software. Next is how much paid of that makes it to the programmers and developers working on it. Lot is lost to middle men.

    “Extracting money from users of a program by restricting their use of it is destructive because the restrictions reduce the amount and the ways that the program can be used. This reduces the amount of wealth that humanity derives from the program. When there is a deliberate choice to restrict, the harmful consequences are deliberate destruction.”

    Does this say you have to provide support for free or write new features for free. No it does not. This is how most FOSS developers work. They give you the program for free you want something done consider digging into your pocket. Or if you are not the programmer obeying there instructions and being a tester of their work.

    People forget testers are paid people just as much as programmers.

    You would call the foss system and exchange system. Everything has a cost. Some is paid in cash some is paid in kind.

    This is the big problem people have when they are new in the FOSS world they report a bug a developer posts for something to be tested to the bug the bug reporter does not be the tester the FOSS programmer walks away and goes O well you are not interested in paying for that. They might know it works perfectly but does not effort to merge it upstream in most cases under the claim it has not been broad enough tested basically it has not been paid for.

    You will pay in time or money. Paying in time avoids developers having to pay a tester. Money you can print more of. You cannot print more time. So Ivan what is the more valuable item to be trading time or money.

    FOSS is more complex to look at is due to the fact its not just using cash. Programmers in most cases in FOSS not truly working for free because of the broad testing requirement before patch merging. Testers are not working for free either because they are after the fixes. Lot of cases people are paid full time todo these roles.

    Yes the FOSS model is complex. Result is projects that no single party could do are affordable due to the cost sharing. There is a limit to the size project even Microsoft can take on. Remember Vista developer ate up more cash than going to the moon. OS development and redesigns is not cheep. Yet Linux and FOSS projects seam to do these quite cheaply until you track the money.

  12. Robert Pogson

    Ivan quoted, “by restricting their use of it is destructive because the restrictions reduce the amount and the ways that the program can be used” but failed to realize what it meant.

    Sharing is a good thing. Being flexible in requirements to use software is a good thing. The evil is in your mind, Ivan, not FLOSS. If you don’t want to share, don’t like sharing and want to do things another way, by all means make that choice but don’t belabour your imaginary points here.

    Millions of young people love RMS because he stands for sharing and making the world a better place. Millions of users of IT benefit every day from things RMS set in motion. That goes for developers, users, suppliers, rich, poor, east/west/north/south. There’s nothing wrong with the concept or practice of FLOSS, nor are adherents crazy, worthless or cheap. They are just ordinary people sharing. If you cannot handle that, just ignore it and it should not bother you.

    My paraphrase/translation: “Detailed, complex and restrictive licences to use software are a burden on the world of IT and prevent mankind getting the best use of computers. It is far better to allow the software to be free and to make a living by supplying other goods and services related to the software or what it does. It is inherently evil to prevent the owner of hardware getting the best use of it by placing legal restrictions on software. That’s taking instead of giving and one should not be paid to take something that’s not garbage.”

    It’s a reasonable system of beliefs related to IT and implementing it makes the world a better place.

  13. Ivan

    That does not imply at all that FLOSS programmers would or should write for $0 except that they are a subset of all writers.

    Extracting money from users of a program by restricting their use of it is destructive because the restrictions reduce the amount and the ways that the program can be used. This reduces the amount of wealth that humanity derives from the program. When there is a deliberate choice to restrict, the harmful consequences are deliberate destruction.

    To paraphrase in everyday language: Don’t accept money for your computer programs because it is destructive and kills kittens.

  14. Robert Pogson

    Prong Reboots wrote, “So a core tenant of FOSS is reducing or eliminating programmer pay.”

    That’s false. Acknowledging that some developers will write for free is no different than saying people in our literate society will write for free. In our computer-literate society, many will write for $0. I do. That does not imply at all that FLOSS programmers would or should write for $0 except that they are a subset of all writers. We have stats from Linux that show some part of contributors are not corporate. Everyone has motivations. Some are curious. Others get high on programming. Others see it as a step in their careers, like apprenticeship. A young person cannot go to a corporation and demand to work with some iconic developer but everyone can join/contribute to a FLOSS project according to their interests and abilities.

  15. Prong Reboots

    Robert, you did not quote the manifesto. Here are some relevant passages.

    “Actually, many people will program with absolutely no monetary incentive. Programming has an irresistible fascination for some people, usually the people who are best at it. There is no shortage of professional musicians who keep at it even though they have no hope of making a living that way.”

    Stallman waffles a bit and concedes that some programmers should receive some money, but it should be less than what they’re currently getting. So a core tenant of FOSS is reducing or eliminating programmer pay. Later on he essentially argues that programmers should become wards of the state. Finally, he digresses into some, frankly, amateurish commentary on post-scarcity society and basically argues that none of this matters anyway because “somebody” is going to be taking care of us.

    Stallman has some methods of recouping programmer investment in the absence of direct payment.

    “A manufacturer introducing a new computer will pay for the porting of operating systems onto the new hardware.”

    This work would be contractual and thus transient. Given how few operating systems are created and that major porting has been done for some time, this is not a viable revenue source.

    “The sale of teaching, handholding and maintenance services could also employ programmers.”

    This market is shrinking with the increased power and ease of use of computers. It is also too expensive for most businesses to afford so their hiring requirements state general computer proficiency.

    “People with new ideas could distribute programs as freeware(9), asking for donations from satisfied users, or selling handholding services. I have met people who are already working this way successfully.”

    Stallman really has a thing about charging people for “handholding services”, doesn’t he? Interesting that he wishes to cut programmer pay yet gouge users. In any case, if the software is so unintuitive that training services costly enough to support a person’s living wage are in order then the software will be replaced at first opportunity. Donationware has a long history of pain and sorrow; this was evident years ago.

    “Users with related needs can form users’ groups, and pay dues. A group would contract with programming companies to write programs that the group’s members would like to use.”

    How is this model different than works for hire? He’s just reshuffling the deck and making people pay a labor union for “services” rather than directly hiring a programmer. All this does is reduce efficiency by introducing middlemen.

  16. Robert Pogson

    Viktor wrote, “the FACT that this Slovakian wannabe company claims they were forced to use Windows when the opposite is true.”


    “The government acknowledges its VAT web application is not conform the country’s rules on standards.

    authorities the past two years also ignored all complaints, saying that the application would eventually be made platform-independent. A new tax application was made available earlier this year. It is written in Java and runs on multiple operating systems including Linux. For the VAT, companies are still referred to the older tool. “It shows that the government does not take the issue very seriously. They ignore their responsibility.””

    see Slovak textile import firm appeals VAT fines because of vendor lock-in

  17. Viktor

    Bullsh*t, Ham! The cited website is precisely usable when you don’t have an electronic certificate.

  18. oiaohm

    Just because a web site is still up does not mean its valid to use Viktor.

    “As many Slovak companies still don’t have certified electronic signatures, the law enables an exception under which the company can enter into an agreement with the tax office and then use a special web-based application called “eDane”.”

    To use the normal web site you need a certified electronic signature. That have failed to be issued in time and no rapid system for allocating them setup. Your example http://tlaciva.novitech.sk/ is not usable without a electronic signature.

    All you really have proven with your links is that you are a moron Viktor. The website you pointed to needs electronic signatures to work for businesses. No electronic signature no submit you tax return by it.

    This is the problem the only way around the case someone had not provided you electronic signature yet was to use a .net application called eDane that only runs on windows.

    Australian tax department has something equal but was smarter todo it in java and its open source. So does the Slovakian tax department like wasting money. All the australian one need was a little translation.

    Also before the java version in Australia you could get one free copy of windows and virtualisation solution a year todo your tax return. This was also not offered in Slovakian either.

  19. Robert Pogson

    Viktor wrote, “Can you please get back on topic!?”

    I thought I set the topic on my blog. M$ has locked in the world more or less and the world is struggling to be free. TFA is part of that global struggle.

  20. Viktor

    Mr. Pogson,

    you need to get your head out of the sand, and accept that the FSFe has mislead you.

    I’m still waiting for your witty comeback regarding the FACT that this Slovakian wannabe company claims they were forced to use Windows when the opposite is true.

    Instead you lose yourself in random ramblings about FLOSS’s code quality and stuff.

    Can you please get back on topic!?

  21. Robert Pogson

    http://www.GNU.org:“Free software is a matter of the users’ freedom to run, copy, distribute, study, change and improve the software. More precisely, it refers to four kinds of freedom, for the users of the software

    Does the GPL allow me to sell copies of the program for money? (#DoesTheGPLAllowMoney)
    Yes, the GPL allows everyone to do this. The right to sell copies is part of the definition of free software. Except in one special situation, there is no limit on what price you can charge. (The one exception is the required written offer to provide source code that must accompany binary-only release.)

    Does the GPL allow me to charge a fee for downloading the program from my site?
    Yes. You can charge any fee you wish for distributing a copy of the program. If you distribute binaries by download, you must provide “equivalent access” to download the source—therefore, the fee to download source may not be greater than the fee to download the binary.

    Does the GPL allow me to require that anyone who receives the software must pay me a fee and/or notify me? (#DoesTheGPLAllowRequireFee)
    No. In fact, a requirement like that would make the program non-free. If people have to pay when they get a copy of a program, or if they have to notify anyone in particular, then the program is not free. See the definition of free software.

    The GPL is a free software license, and therefore it permits people to use and even redistribute the software without being required to pay anyone a fee for doing so.”

  22. Prong Reboots

    There is nothing in the concept of FLOSS about programmers working for free.

    Have you actually read the GNU manifesto?

  23. Viktor

    The FSFE fabricated nothing. There was an actual suit and a fine for failing to use that other OS.

    You don’t get it, do you? I have provided you with appropriate links that prove that you don’t have to use the .NET application, because the old web application still exists. So how can this company claim that they were “forced” to use Windows? They were not. They were merely dumb. They should have to pay a fine — for dumbness.

  24. oiaohm

    Ivan Lets look at the Closed source model.

    Government pays closed source maker for software.
    Big percentage of that money goes to share holders and other parties other than the coders.

    The coders are required to sign there copyright over to the company and may not get any shares in the company. So the coders only get paid a daily wage.

    To a coder who gets a daily wage that might be for R&D as well.

    Difference between FOSS and Closed source is the government can in a FOSS case put all there spend into real on the ground developer time without parties skimming from the top most of it.

    Ivan
    “Where are the hippies coding away for free producing awesome code and why should I trust the F$F-Europe?”
    Mostly they don’t exist. Because most FOSS coders are full time employees of someone. Like google 20 percent of a coders paid time at goggle can be spent on his own projects and he keeps the copyright to that work to use as he sees fit.

    This is what you find lot of FOSS projects are R&D project that would have been to large for any one company to R&D alone. There is a place for FOSS in the market.

    For some reason Microsoft is also now producing FOSS software in particular area. All commercial companies find sooner or latter they don’t have the resources to produce all there software requirements in house or order it from a closed source vendor. This even includes Microsoft. FOSS fills the gap.

    This is where the presume if hippy coder is wrong. Most foss developers are full blown commercial coders getting the same commercial wage as everyone else in the software development game.

    Reality Ivan you have miss conceptions about what is going. Mostly Microsoft and Unix parties generated myths.

  25. Robert Pogson

    Ivan wrote, “Where are the hippies coding away for free?”

    What a silly idea. Slavery disappeared in most parts of Earth by 1960.

    There is nothing in the concept of FLOSS about programmers working for free. It’s not even the case licences must be $0. That’s just a side-effect of the freedom to copy the code. Lots of FLOSS is distributed by charging for use, installation, support etc. e.g. RedHat, MySQL, and SUN made tons of money on FLOSS. They paid their programmers. They supported programmers who did contribute for $0, too.

    I was a graduate student at a university. Believe me, I did work for peanuts but I was paid and part of the work was writing and using software. I gave credit to the taxpayers in my thesis.

    Still, there’s nothing essential to the process of writing software that involves money except some paper and pencils or a computer which costs very little these days. I can get a perfectly serviceable computer any time I want by dumpster-diving. I’ve even done that a time or two. A few years ago I was at a place where the government ordered the school to disassemble a computer lab that was set up in a teacherage. The cabling was scrapped and I lived off that cable for about five years for the usual patch-cabling in schools. It must have been ~1000 feet which is a lot of patch-cables and extensions to school networks.

  26. oiaohm

    Ivan if you have not worked it out yet successful foss does something to help someone to make money. So they employ the developers.

    “The gimp has taken 12 years and counting to feature high bit-depth image editing after having the functionality handed to them on a silver platter by a “corporation” that paid people to work on it.”

    How to put you foot in it. http://gegl.org has been running for that time. This is where the functionality in gimp will come from.

    Nothing of cinepaint is in gegl.org Corporation showed what was possible but not practical.

    gegl.org has been a fairly much unfunded project. Lot of decanted work getting an engine that would test case against everything it need to handle. Cinepaint engine has trouble handling images large than ram storage and has channel limits ie don’t try to get cinepaint to handle 6 channel images native 4 channels are its limit and that has to include alpha channel. Imagemagick and related are fairly much capped on the number of channels they can support runs into problems with 6 channel if you want alpha as well.

    Nothing from the commercial world that did address all the problems. There was one engine that gimp could have chosen what is vips http://www.vips.ecs.soton.ac.uk. But this is not GTK compatible or gimp scripting compatible.

    The true fact is gimp set one very high require for its replacement core engine in the year 2000 what gegl was required to.

    This created a joke in the year 2002. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:GEGL.png Because of all the capacities that gegl was required to meet to be ready. Yes a extra and pointless leg on the logo. Yes required capacities written in the year 2000 for gegl exceed current day photoshop. Yes 2000 requirement list for gegl is kinda insane that 12 years latter the requirement list is still higher than all the commercials.

    So far gegl has not made one item in the year 2000 list. That is 128 bit per channel editing. When I say that list is insane I am not kidding. Yes it has to add 128 bit per channel before it can go version 1.0.

    gegl is basically hurd 2. Expect unlike hurd that as of yet has not made it to a production grade OS where gegl will make it into production. gegl 1.0 might not see the light of day in our life time.

    Something else interesting about gegl is it support a per colour channel alpha settings. So a 3 colour image can have a 3 channel alpha. 4 colour can have a 4 colour alpha and so on. This is a year 2000 requirement. Photoshop cannot do this straight up. Only one other thing can and that vips.

    This is the problem Ivan. Gegl has quite a few features that are either unique to it or vips is the only thing that matches out of all the software in existence for image alteration. Scary they were all written down in the year 2000.

    12 year when you have the list makes perfect sense lot is uncharted no one had done them before. I will agree gimp has become a laughing stock because its taken so much time to get Gegl ready.

    When gegl was getting to the stage of being almost ready is when the major project to clean up gimp front end started.

  27. Ivan

    Let’s see here…

    1.) A startup that wanted to make money.
    2.) Government funding provided the money.
    3.) Government funding provided the money.

    There is a common theme here that I can’t quite put my finger on… Oh right, money.

    Where are the hippies coding away for free producing awesome code and why should I trust the F$F-Europe?

  28. Viktor

    Why don’t you talk about the topic at hand, Pogson? The FSFe fabricated a story out of thin air. Just ignore your urge to “prove” that FLOSS code is superior. It has nothing to do with the FSFe’s lies.

  29. Robert Pogson

    Ivan wrote, “All the projects you listed are backed by corporations that pay people to work on them.”

    Hmmm.

    • Mysql was written by a pair of individuals, Monty Widenius, and David Axmark who made a business out of it. No one backed them early on. They started writing MySQL in 1994 and started MySQL AB in 1995.
    • Apache web server evolved from NCSA httpd. NCSA was sponsored by government.
    • The Linux TCP/IP stack came from BSD and had many contributors from government and academia. It’s FLOSS, a cooperative project of the world.
  30. Ivan

    No iLia is talking sense, Bob. All the projects you listed are backed by corporations that pay people to work on them.

    The gimp has taken 12 years and counting to feature high bit-depth image editing after having the functionality handed to them on a silver platter by a “corporation” that paid people to work on it.

  31. Robert Pogson

    iLia wrote, “Without support from the state or huge corporations FLOSS cannot compete with proprietary software, a bunch of hobbyist-developers working on some project in their free time (6-8 hours a week) will never be able to compete with a bunch of well paid professional developers how work 8 hours a day, 5 days a week.”

    FLOSS is everyone, not just big corporations. FLOSS is government, individuals, organizations, businesses making the software they need. FLOSS is a cooperative project of the world and millions of FLOSS developers can and do kick M$’s butt when it comes to quality of code.

    Project defects per KLOC industry average
    MySQL 0.09 0.57
    TCP/IP in Linux 0.1 0.6
    Apache beta 0.6 0.6
    GNU/Linux X 15 to 35 times X

    So, iLia is talking through his hat.

  32. Clarence Moon

    FSFE (Free Software Foundation Europe) is helping a Slovakian business

    I don’t see where they are helping anyone but themselves, Mr. Pogson. What have they done to help EURA Slovakia? All they are interested in is making noise, I think.

  33. iLia

    Mr.Pogson:follows open standards

    Which standards?

    HTML 4.01 Specification says:

    This document has been reviewed by W3C Members and other interested parties and has been endorsed by the Director as a W3C Recommendation.

    and XHTML™ 1.0 The Extensible HyperText Markup Language (Second Edition)

    states:

    W3C Recommendation 26 January 2000, revised 1 August 2002

    they are not standards, they are recommendations.

    Without support from the state or huge corporations FLOSS cannot compete with proprietary software, a bunch of hobbyist-developers working on some project in their free time (6-8 hours a week) will never be able to compete with a bunch of well paid professional developers how work 8 hours a day, 5 days a week.

    Linux kernel and Firefox are good examples of it.

    Gimp and Inkscape are bad examples of it, big corporations like IBM don’t care about them and these projects are crap.

    In 1997, M$ planned to spend 5% of its budget for advertising/promotion on IE.

    In 1997? 15 years ago? What a Blast from the past!

    You are so over the top that no one will take you seriously.

    Almost no one takes GNU/Linux as a desktop OS seriously.

    Oh, by the way the Chines commies also like Linux.

    It seams to me that these new American re-education camps can be used to re-educate Windows users as well.

  34. Viktor

    Hey, Mr. Pogson:

    This is the dumbest story I’ve ever heard!

    Do you know why? Because I don’t even speak Slovakian. Yet I managed with the power of Google at my fingertips to find in merely 5 seconds (!) (keywords: “edane” “mono” “.net”) a solution to the problem. It is indeed true that this “web” application requires .NET 2. But the old web-based application is still available:

    http://tlaciva.novitech.sk/

    There is even one other solution mentioned besides the one I just mentioned. Just have a look for yourself:

    Daňové priznanie 2010 na Linuxe (Google Translation)

    You shouldn’t believe every story the FSF(e) cooks up.

  35. dougman

    I find it interesting that iLia mentions Android.

    Something I observed of late, software developers will create applications supporting Win, OSx, iOS and Android, but when you mention Linux, they hang up on you or flat out refuse.

    Don’t they understand that Linux and Android are similar?

    I await the day when you can just download and install a android application directly from APT or your OS package manager.

  36. kozmcrae

    iLia’s writes fiction:

    “– Sir, but I want to use Microsoft stuff, it works really well and I am ready to pay, it doesn’t cost much, and it seams to me that it works better than FLOSS.

    — Five years in prison for using and propaganda of proprietary software, in Brave New Europe you are free to use only free software approved by the European commission.”

    iLia digs down deep into his Soviet roots to portray FLOSS in the most outrageous way possible. You are an asshole iLia. And you may not be aware of it but you just did us a favor by writing crap like that. You are so over the top that no one will take you seriously.

  37. Robert Pogson

    A web application should not need to support any OS or client application if the web application follows open standards. The problem here is that M$ pressured the world to use IE-only standards by leveraging the desktop OS with OEMs and ISPs years ago. Those who stayed on the treadmill got where they are now, in a deep hole.

    “During the Term but ending September 15. 1998 (unless the
    Term is extended by mutual agreement of the parties, in which case ending upon a date so agreed to by the parties), Intuit and its Ahiliates will promote and distribute IE (and no Other Browser) as the browser software of choice for QFN. Intuit Products and Intuit Web Sites.”

    see http://www.justice.gov/atr/cases/exhibits/1157.pdf

    Such an exclusive deal with one company would have been silly and impotent, but M$ twisted the arms of every player it could find on the planet… In 1997, M$ planned to spend 5% of its budget for advertising/promotion on IE.

  38. iLia

    – Sir, but I want to use Microsoft stuff, it works really well and I am ready to pay, it doesn’t cost much, and it seams to me that it works better than FLOSS.

    — Five years in prison for using and propaganda of proprietary software, in Brave New Europe you are free to use only free software approved by the European commission.

    Mr.Pogson, are you serious? UE is a dictatorship, it seams to me that you are ready to praise the Khmer Rouge regime if they had used some Free Software.

    This story looks really stupid, why this company simply cannot get an certified electronic signature and use it to submit their reports?

    And why a government should care about a fringe OS with 1.5% market share when it creates a fall-back solutions for companies that don’t want to bother about following laws?

    If the state requires the electronic form as a only way of fulfilling the statutory obligation, it has to offer the multi-platform solution, which is available to everybody. Otherwise, the state in advance precludes its citizens to behave in accordance with the law, comments Martin Husovec.

    OK, and what about other OSs? Mac OSX, Android, OS/2, eComStation, Chrome OS, KolibriOS, Windows 95, Amiga?

    Should they be supported as well?

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