2006-07-12

Keep your bits.

BitKeeper Author Prohibits Paying Customer From Creating Competing Product.

As I understand it, according to the BitKeeper license, you're not even allowed to think about writing a Source Control system while you're a paying customer of BitKeeper. This was the primary reason that the use of BitKeeper for the Linux Kernel was a pain - folks working on subversion and friends weren't allowed to use it.

Shit like this is why I advocate Free Software and Free Culture.

In a related story, I was there when at LinuxConfAu2005, Tridge took an opportunity during a keynote to 500ish hackers to say, "I'm not a genius reverse engineer, I didn't use magic powers to write SourcePuller." And told the audience the host and port of a BK repo, and asked how he'd go about reverse engineering it. It was very well staged. The responses, 'telnet hostname portnum', 'help' and 'clone' (clone was in the help text provided by the BK serevr) were all that was required to make a very impressive quantitiy of code start streaming from the BK server over the telnet session.

It evoked quite the, "well now isn't Larry a silly boy" response from the crowd.

'rati tags:

No comments: