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Re: Web versions

From: DJ Delorie
Subject: Re: Web versions
Date: Thu, 11 Mar 2021 13:42:32 -0500

"Alfred M. Szmidt" <> writes:
> Depending on someone else to even be able to run
> your program is something we defintily do not want.

Are you arguing against Javascript, or SaaS, or just proprietary Saas?

Consider the following:

You have a Free Software browser which you built yourself.  It includes
a Javascript engine (also FS) which complies with all relevent
standards.  You check out a repository that includes sources for gcc,
binutils, et al, along with sources for some application.  You build
gcc, binutils, et al locally, and use them to build webasm versions of
each of those plus your application.

Now you run your browser and point it at file:///myapp.html

Everything I've suggested so far complies with the wording and spirit of
the GPL, and is fully under the user's control.

Would you object to this just because it's "in a browser" ?

Personally, I see a huge difference between a "service" and a "trap".
There must be a way to offer a service to others in a way that complies
with the spirit of the GPL.  We don't complain about others pre-building
packages for us, because we *could* build them ourselves.  Why not say
the same for SaaS?  We don't complain about the service if we *could*
provide that service for ourselves locally?

I think we need to be careful about how we present our arguments, and
remain focused on the Free Software aspects, so as not to preclude
things which *could* be Free Software just because someone showed one

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