What's Canonical thinking about Bazaar?

Zooko Wilcox-O'Hearn zooko at zooko.com
Wed Nov 11 23:07:48 GMT 2009


On Thursday, 2009-11-05, at 19:05 , Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:

> Also, Canonical has registered Bazaar as a GNU project, and has  
> gotten one very high-profile "sale" (Emacs) *purely* on that basis,  
> over the *vociferous* objections of several core developers  
> (including a couple who were very active in the anti-BitKeeper  
> movement on lkml) and very lukewarm support from the core,  
> including the listed maintainers. "Corporate product" branding  
> doesn't fit with my image of a GNU project.  I suppose you can call  
> that religious.  It's certainly a political tightrope to walk.  RMS  
> can be a hairy nuisance if he thinks he's been used or double- 
> crossed, and it's never been clear to me how far his endorsement of  
> corporate "ownership" of free software goes.

You know, there's also the other side of this coin: as long as bzr is  
a GNU project and is the vcs for Emacs then it has some stakeholders  
who aren't part of Canonical.  (I share some of the concerns I've  
heard here that this rebranding might marginalize bzr among Free/Open  
Source hackers.)

I'll be watching to see if Emacs abandons bzr and to see how new bzr  
releases seem to do on the "useful for non-Canonical and non- 
launchpad" cases.  I hope that it will continue to improve as a good  
tool for that sort of use.

By the way, I was surprised when I realized that bzr was a GNU  
project but that the copyright had not been assigned to FSF.  It  
turns out that I don't know when FSF requires copyright assignment.

Regards,

Zooko



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