EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

06.30.07

GPLv3 & iPhone – Looking Beyond the Disinformation (Corrected)

Posted in Apple, FSF, GPL, Hardware, Tivoization at 1:32 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

It sure is pretty, but look underneath the surface.

Let’s start by clarifying that I don’t have anything against Apple. In fact, I used a Mac for over year at work. There is, however, a hidden similarity between some aspects of Windows Vista and the iPhone. Both are attractive to one’s eyes, but there are hidden dangers (and possibly agendas) which are being centralised and then embedded in that very rigid product.

Due to simultaneous big announcements, followed by release of the iPhone and GPLv3, some sites are talking about GPL’s effect on the iPhone. Some articles seem very critical, but not rightfully so. Various bits of software on the iPhone, such as KHTML, are GPLLGPL-licensed, but this does not mean that companies will get ‘punished’ immediately, if at all. Some articles embrace and use dramatic licence to make issues seem greater than they truly are.

Apple will not be affected. It might, however, need to honour the code that it uses. KDE [*libraries* are] is still GPLv2LGPL-licensed [see correction in the comments below]. So, let’s look beyond this. The iPhone does not even have an SDK. Development for the iPhone is restricted to Web browser widgets. The bigger issues are moral ones and are not to be confused with licensing. The press seems to be missing this core point.

Last night, the FSF sent out an E-mail calling the iPhone “Defective by Design”. That is the tagline and label consistently used to describe products that make use of DRM and restrict (or altogether eliminate) consumer rights. There are other modern and sophisticated smartphones that neither mimic nor replace the iPhone, but they are truly open and they earned some positive early reviews. Trolltech’s Greenphone and OpenMoko are just two examples, but let’s not get promotional here.

The message to take here is that it’s rather ironic that GPLv3 is released at the same time as a product whose deficiencies might be highlighted by the big announcements (not to mention heated discussions that accompany and follow the FSF’s limelight). A few days ago, amid some excellent news for Linux, Richard Stallman reminded us why restrictions are dangerous. You are encouraged to read this if you haven’t.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

6 Comments

  1. anonymous said,

    June 30, 2007 at 11:15 am

    Gravatar

    WebKit uses LGPL, so no problem about breaking a license. I’m interested on WebKit, maybe something like iPhone but with game joystick (for emulators) and DRM-free in all means as I wanto to use software like ScummVM :)

  2. Anonymous said,

    June 30, 2007 at 6:48 pm

    Gravatar

    Is someone still taking this site serious?

    > Various bits of software on the iPhone, such as KHTML, are GPL-licensed

    KHTML is of course LGPL licensed. Maybe you will learn about the licenses and their differences (which eg doesn’t oblige Apple to release complete source of Safari) one day.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 30, 2007 at 8:36 pm

    Gravatar

    Thanks. I’ve corrected the text to indicate there’s a mistake there.

  4. Anonymous said,

    July 1, 2007 at 2:12 am

    Gravatar

    > I’ve corrected the text to indicate there’s a mistake there.

    You corrected the wrong part and did not make it better. It still reads: “such as KHTML, are GPL-licensed” (should be *L*GPL) and “KDE is still LGPL-licensed” (should be KDE *libraries* are LGPL licensed, the other parts of KDE are under various licenses).

  5. Roy Schestowitz said,

    July 1, 2007 at 4:54 am

    Gravatar

    Thanks. I’ve changed the text again. Please let me know if it’s still deceiving.

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    July 1, 2007 at 6:34 am

    Gravatar

    Speaking of LGPL code and Apple, Slashdot has just brought the following to the readers’ attention:

    http://wiki.winehq.org/Parallels

    “Parallels Desktop for Mac(www.parallels.com) contains Wine’s Direct3D code according to http://www.parallels.com/en/licensing/. So far(June 30th, 2007) attempts to ask them for the modified source code failed. This page is meant for keeping track of this, without starting legal action or a publicity campaign yet.”

What Else is New


  1. Primer to the Crisis and Scandals at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    An introduction to the chaotic state of what used to be the world's leading patent office and quickly became Europe's biggest embarrassment



  2. Workers of the European Patent Office (EPO) Are Going on Strike Again, Almost 90% Voted in Favour

    Thousands of brave EPO employees chose to cast a vote and make it known that they are in favour of another strike



  3. Benoît Battistelli Has Lost the Election at the EPO

    FFPE candidates (or moles from the yellow union) failed to enter the Central Staff Committee in spite of Battistelli's attempt to help them get in



  4. Emerging Threat to Patent Reforms at the USPTO

    Our plan of returning to coverage of US patent affairs in the wake of powerful lobbies that pursue patent maximalism



  5. You Know That the Unitary Patent (UPC) is in Huge Peril When Its Biggest Fans Admit It's Unlikely to Happen Even Next Year

    The tactics of Team UPC turn ugly as they personally target anyone who stands in their way, even a professor/judge who is courageous enough to state the obvious



  6. More Than Six Human Casualties Under Battistelli at the EPO, But the Human Toll Can Become a Lot Worse

    The bigger or much broader picture detailing the high cost of autocracy and mental torture at the EPO, where lives are ruined not only when these are ended and some key buildings pose severe threat to a lot of workers



  7. EPO's Elodie Bergot Calls Staff Suicide Just 'Passing Away', Pretends to Care

    How the EPO continues to mislead if not lie to staff, even when staff commits suicide -- a growing problem for Team Battistelli, whom some insiders hold accountable for these deaths



  8. The Administrative Tribunal of ILO Will Deliver EPO Judgments in Six Days

    Despite its old age (nearly a century), ILO's tradition when it comes to enforcing the law is anything but sterling, yet one can hope that it will stop its unproductive cat-and-mouse game with the EPO, where compliance is rare and actual judgments (not deferrals/referrals) are even rarer



  9. Links 21/6/2017: Red Hat's Numbers Are Up, New Debian Being Studied

    Links for the day



  10. Another Suicide Reported at the EPO While the Paid-for Media Focuses on 'European Inventor Award' Charade

    Puff pieces for Benoît Battistelli published aplenty while the European media refuses to deal with the reality -- not paid-for illusions -- at the European Patent Office



  11. Links 20/6/2017: Chuwi Lapbook, Linux 4.12 RC6, Mesa 17.1.3

    Links for the day



  12. At the European Inventor Award Ceremony Benoît Battistelli Lied to a Lot of Scientists and “Media Partners” About the UPC

    The Liar in Chief, Benoît Battistelli, still lives in a fantasy world or simply lies intentionally, which would be worse



  13. Contact Details for the EPO's Administrative Council Delegations

    List of Heads of Delegation and their E-mail addresses (used to be public information before Benoît Battistelli's oppressive regime or coup)



  14. Don't Forget to Vote for EPO Strike This Week (Thursday)

    A reminder that there's a vote on a strike at the European Patent Office later this week, giving an opportunity to rebut the "vocal minority" myth which Benoît Battistelli likes to spread



  15. European Patent Office (EPO) Whistleblowing Guidelines: Motivation and Impact of Leaks

    Advice on when to leak and what to leak for the desired effect, which is reformatory (though transparency and accountability)



  16. Links 18/6/2017: New Debian Release, Catchup With a Lot of News

    Links for the day



  17. Appalling Press Coverage Regarding the Unitary Patent (UPC)

    How the media has lied (and keeps lying) about the UPC, which the European public neither needs nor wants, putting aside serious constitutional issues that are associated with the UPC



  18. The Writings on the Wall at the European Patent Office: Number of Directors May Soon Decline From 150 to Just 65-70

    Battistelli is seizing more direct and indirect control over the European Patent Office (EPO), which is supposed to eject him with a proposal for replacement already formally prepared for publication



  19. European Patent Office (EPO) Whistleblowing Guidelines

    The first part of a series which offers tips for sending us material/evidence, specifically from the European Patent Office (EPO)



  20. General Consultative Committee of the EPO Warns About Battistelli's Plans

    The General Consultative Committee (GCC) issues a long document (176 pages) which explains to the overseer of the Office how internal rule changes make things even worse



  21. Links 16/6/2017: New Atom Release, Firefox 55 Beta

    Links for the day



  22. Leaked: European Patent Office Still Uses Microsoft Windows XP... in 2017

    The EPO continues to rely on inherently insecure (by design) platforms and Mr. Kraft, Battistelli's CIO, bragged that the actions of the Office "prevented any damage to the EPO and its reputation"



  23. Unitary Patent (UPC) Will Start “Real Soon” Now... Said Team UPC For So Many Years

    The Unitary Patent or Unified Patent Court Agreement (UPCA) is going nowhere fast, but those who spent time and money promoting it for self gain continue to lie to the press with overly optimistic predictions, unrealistic timelines, and Kool-Aid about the supposed 'benefits' of the Unified Patent Court (UPC)



  24. EPO Management Wastes Millions of Euros on a Silly, Gratuitous, Self-Serving Festival While EPO Staff is Planning Another Strike

    Unrest at the European Patent Office (EPO) is growing again, with plans of a strike resulting in a formal vote for a strike next week



  25. Links 15/6/2017: Mir 0.26.3, FreeNAS 11.0

    Links for the day



  26. Software Patents in Europe Are Still Promoted by the EPO, Even in Defiance of the Ban

    The European Patent Office continues to ignore the directive on the patentability of computer-implemented inventions, which had software patents disallowed with an overwhelming majority of 648 to 14 votes at the European Parliament



  27. Leaked: Job Advertisement for Removing Battistelli From the European Patent Office

    In spite of rumours that Benoît Battistelli would pursue elongation of his term, in clear defiance of the rules (again), paperwork is being put forth to replace him



  28. Links 14/6/2017: New BlackArch Linux ISO and Q4OS 1.8.6, Orion

    Links for the day



  29. Even UPC Proponents, Paid by the EPO's PR Firm, Admit That UPC May Never Happen

    Speculations are being floated regarding the cause of the impasse, which is going to result in a very long period of uncertainty and possibly the collapse of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) as it was envisioned by Michel Barnier, Benoît Battistelli and other opportunists



  30. Caricature: Balance of Justice at the European Patent Office

    Balance of justice under Battistelli's regime isn't quite what the Office wants the public and the Dutch authorities to believe


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts