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  • #16
    Originally posted by ArneBab View Post
    Did you actually expect them to release it? I guess that they are currently testing how big the backlash would be for keeping their backend proprietary and only releasing binary versions of the compiler to developers.

    There’s a reason why LLVM is non-copyleft.
    Your comment suggests that licensing is the only reason Apple releases source code. If that were the case, Apple would not have consistently provided source code for not only their entire toolchain, but substantial portions of Mac OS X. This includes a substantial amount of code for which they were under no obligation to release:

    http://opensource.apple.com/

    They have no reason to stop publishing sources now.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by ryao View Post
      Your comment suggests that licensing is the only reason Apple releases source code. If that were the case, Apple would not have consistently provided source code for not only their entire toolchain, but substantial portions of Mac OS X.
      The intended suggestion of my comment is that the only reason besides licensing which gets Apple to release source code is business-logic: They release as long as it fits their goals (by getting the work of others for free or pushing competitors out of the marketplace).

      Apple publicly stated that they want to get rid of GPL, which includes GCC. The reason is that GPLv3 disallows the kind of lockdown Apple uses to enforce their role as absolute gatekeepers on Apple devices. It’s therefore logical that they support LLVM. A possible even stronger reason could be that they might want to include Developer tools in locked-down devices and offer a kind of restricted developer mode (remember this comment if something like that crops up in future iDings).

      Also keep in mind that MacOSX builds on a formerly completely free base - and is no longer completely free. Have a look at the Opendarwin project if you want to see what happens if you try to actually use the limited freedoms Apple pretends to grant: http://web.archive.org/web/200704091.../shutdown.html

      And the only reason why that did did not happen to WebKit is the GPL. Otherwise Apple would have made sure that Google cannot create Chromium.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by ArneBab View Post
        The intended suggestion of my comment is that the only reason besides licensing which gets Apple to release source code is business-logic: They release as long as it fits their goals (by getting the work of others for free or pushing competitors out of the marketplace).

        Apple publicly stated that they want to get rid of GPL, which includes GCC. The reason is that GPLv3 disallows the kind of lockdown Apple uses to enforce their role as absolute gatekeepers on Apple devices. It’s therefore logical that they support LLVM. A possible even stronger reason could be that they might want to include Developer tools in locked-down devices and offer a kind of restricted developer mode (remember this comment if something like that crops up in future iDings).

        Also keep in mind that MacOSX builds on a formerly completely free base - and is no longer completely free. Have a look at the Opendarwin project if you want to see what happens if you try to actually use the limited freedoms Apple pretends to grant: http://web.archive.org/web/200704091.../shutdown.html

        And the only reason why that did did not happen to WebKit is the GPL. Otherwise Apple would have made sure that Google cannot create Chromium.
        I doubt that things are quite as bad as you say. First off, BSD and Mach were historically research vehicles that functioned as organ donors to basically any project. The fact that Apple has been so open with the code base is more than can be said for others like Microsoft. From what I understand, feedback from developers told Apple that there was no need to invest resources into an independent Darwin OS. The failure of the Open Darwin project seems to confirm that there was not much interest in that.

        As for WebKit, the code was based on KHTML and is LGPL licensed, not GPL licensed. If Apple wanted to change Webkit's license, they would have had plenty of opportunity to do it given that they have rewritten it several times over. They still could, but that would not really serve the interests of Apple's user base, which benefits from Webkit's open source nature. Webkit went from being an obscure engine to being the reference for web development. That would not have happened had it been restricted solely to Apple's platforms.

        This paranoia is rather unproductive. Should Apple decide to stop contributing, the community will just bypass them like we always have. There should be a rather interesting announcement soon about OSS developers doing this with a company that decided to stop participating in OSS. As far as I can tell, things are not going quite as well for that company as they are for the community. Remember what I said when you read the announcement. You will know what it is when you see it.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by ryao View Post
          I doubt that things are quite as bad as you say. First off, BSD and Mach were historically research vehicles that functioned as organ donors to basically any project. The fact that Apple has been so open with the code base is more than can be said for others like Microsoft. From what I understand, feedback from developers told Apple that there was no need to invest resources into an independent Darwin OS. The failure of the Open Darwin project seems to confirm that there was not much interest in that.
          That’s a rather insidious interpretation of the shutdown of open darwin.

          Let me quote: why OpenDarwin stopped: “Availability of sources, interaction with Apple representatives, difficulty building and tracking sources, and a lack of interest from the community“

          3 of 4 reasons come from Apple. And a lack of interest is easy to create by simply blocking the project, so that it cannot deliver.

          As for WebKit, the code was based on KHTML and is LGPL licensed, not GPL licensed. If Apple wanted to change Webkit's license, they would have had plenty of opportunity to do it given that they have rewritten it several times over.
          LGPL is essenitally a GPL with an exception which allows unfree programs to link to it…

          The only way to really do this would be a cleanroom implementation: Someone writes specs and someone else who does not know the code reimplements it. Anything else means that it’s still a derivative work (or at least unsure and reliant on court interpretation).

          This paranoia is rather unproductive. Should Apple decide to stop contributing, the community will just bypass them like we always have. There should be a rather interesting announcement soon about OSS developers doing this with a company that decided to stop participating in OSS. As far as I can tell, things are not going quite as well for that company as they are for the community. Remember what I said when you read the announcement. You will know what it is when you see it.
          Good luck with that. For some areas this will undoubtedly work: If the community is much more active than the company - or if the developers are independent enough. As you see from OpenDarwin and khtml, Apple actively works against that kind of community. And they aren’t known to employ many people who aren’t in line with company policy.

          I prefer basing my work on projects where the license actually provides the safety I need as user of the project, instead of hoping for social effects which only work as long as the community is stronger than the company.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by ArneBab View Post
            This is for facts and history: http://draketo.de/licht/politik/lese...-software-myth

            And please replace logic and common sense by “business logic”.

            For hate: Why should I? It’s people who trust them who will get burned.
            Well, it is definitely true that a businesses duty is, surprisingly, to its shareholders. Not to anyone else. See the 'immoral' tax dodging in the UK.

            It is undoubtable however that Apple have went further with their disclosure of source code than they need to. Particularly the FreeBSD project is able to integrate many of Apple's improvements having requested Apple to release new enhancements under the BSD license.

            And Apple are highly unlikely to fork and close Clang/LLVM. What possible business sense could that make? Maintaining it themselves is expensive. Far more efficient to push their changes to the community. Apple is not conspiring to destroy open-source; they are merely doing their duty to their shareholders.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by ArneBab View Post
              That’s a rather insidious interpretation of the shutdown of open darwin.

              Let me quote: why OpenDarwin stopped: “Availability of sources, interaction with Apple representatives, difficulty building and tracking sources, and a lack of interest from the community“

              3 of 4 reasons come from Apple. And a lack of interest is easy to create by simply blocking the project, so that it cannot deliver.
              Are you completely ignorant of the existence of the Pure Darwin project? It succeeded the Open Darwin project and it is currently active. Its real problem is a lack of man power. The missing bits are fairly small and Apple's userbase does not really care about it.

              There will always be things in the world that you do not like. Whining about the state of things on the forums only serves to make everyone else's lives a little more miserable. If you want things to improve, go work on Pure Darwin. Otherwise, please find a field of interest that does not involve pestering innocent bystanders.
              Last edited by ryao; 09-16-2013, 12:08 PM.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by ryao View Post
                There will always be things in the world that you do not like. Whining about the state of things on the forums only serves to make everyone else's lives a little more miserable. If you want things to improve, go work on Pure Darwin. Otherwise, please find a field of interest that does not involve pestering innocent bystanders.
                The only thing which made me waste time here were the folks whining about my interpretation of Apples policy. You expect me to accept your view that Apple will keep true to opening their code, while you attack me when I say that delayed release of their sources is fully in line with their history - and that this is in line with measuring whether they can afford to bite the LLVM community or not.

                And yes, I do not know Pure Darwin, because I jumped ship even before Apple bugged iTunes and locked down their iDings. I am not personally affected by their actions, but friends of mine are.

                And if you downplay the effects of their delayed source release, you are no innocent bystander but an active participant in downplaying the effect of locking down users and developers. Otherwise you could have ignored what I write as just another interpretation. But you could not let that stand. So you are no bystander.

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