[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Open source - Free software

From: Barry Margolin
Subject: Re: Open source - Free software
Date: Thu, 28 Sep 2006 09:27:45 -0400
User-agent: MT-NewsWatcher/3.5.2 (PPC Mac OS X)

In article <>,
 Al Klein <rukbat@pern.invalid> wrote:

> On Wed, 27 Sep 2006 09:34:32 -0500, Jay Belanger <>
> wrote:
> >Al Klein <rukbat@pern.invalid> writes:
> >...
> >> Free Software may, but free software refers to software that's free
> >> (by any of the many definitions of the word "free".  (That's how
> >> English [and most other languages] works.)
> >
> >Really?  The meaning of the adjective doesn't depend on the noun it
> >modifies? 
> Not necessarily.  Defining "free" as "without cost" is perfectly
> legitimate, as long as the particular usage isn't illogical.  Any
> meaning can be defined into uselessness if illogicality is allowed.

And sometimes both meanings are logical, and then context is used to 
determine which is most likely intended.

Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana.

It's not illogical to interpret the second "flies" as a verb, but 
additional contextual knowledge tells us that it's probably intended as 
a noun.

And in the GNU and Linux newsgroups, the context establishes that "free 
software" refers to freedom, not price.

Barry Margolin,
Arlington, MA
*** PLEASE post questions in newsgroups, not directly to me ***
*** PLEASE don't copy me on replies, I'll read them in the group ***

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]