Not a bash, just the facts

Ewan Mac Mahon ewan at
Sun Mar 26 18:31:16 UTC 2006

On Sat, Mar 25, 2006 at 10:18:03PM +0000, Daniel Carrera wrote:
> Eugene Vilensky wrote:
> >"
> >I think we are really minimizing what Sun has to lose.  Microsoft already
> >tried the "embrace and extend" nonsense with Java.  Why would anyone think
> >it wouldn't happen again with a GPL'd Java?"
> >
> >Because its GPL.
> The GPL has no provision for compatibility. Anyone could grab a GPL Java 
> and modify it in a way that is incompatible with the Java specification. 
> The viability of Java depends 100% on the expectation that any JRE will 
> have a certain set of features that will work in certain ways.
It works OK for the other Free languages like perl, python, ruby, and
indeed the gcc implementation of C/C++.

No single distribution ships a weirdly broken implementation of any of
these languages[1] since to do so would make the distribution less
useful. There's no need for the licence to enforce basic sanity, the
distros and their users do that themselves. If someone comes up with an
extension that actually seems useful then everyone can adopt it; either
way everyone stays compatible because everyone wants compatibility.


[1] OK, so there was the gcc 2.96 aberation. Other than that.....
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