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Re: Fan mail about the Hurd...

From: Wolfgang Jaehrling
Subject: Re: Fan mail about the Hurd...
Date: Thu, 6 Feb 2003 01:29:41 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.3.28i

On Wed, Feb 05, 2003 at 04:45:06PM +0100, Robert Millan wrote:
> I think it's realy fun when Linux (the kernel) and OpenSource zealots come
> out flaming like that, proving they fear that a superior dessign of system
> core can draw attention away from that pity anti-ideological pragmatism they
> advocate for.

But when talking like this, you will also have a hard time convincing
anyone; I think it is much better to not claim `superior design',
since the designs we are talking about are so different that obviously
both have their respective advantages and disadvantages.  There will
always be at least one case (no matter how special) where the other
design eventually will turn out to be superior, so no design is simply
`superior'.  I suspect most hackers to be more or less aware of that
(and *for sure* almost everyone will agree with you if you say it).

Also keep in mind that there *are* Linux developers (like Alan Cox)
who say quite intelligent and fair things about the Hurd.  This
implies that whatever you say about Linux (and its developers) also
should be intelligent and fair.  (But shouldn't that be the case

Therefore, the approach of explaining why it is good to have Free
Software implementations of completely *different* designs is a much
better starting point, since it won't cause anyone to turn away from
you immediatelly.  Quite the opposite: It will give people the
impression that you are not a zealot, but actually know what you are
talking about.  (You could even go one step farther: If you tell
people that you like the monolithic approach, they will get curious
about your reasons for liking the multiserver-microkernel approach
even more. ;-).

Only then you can go on to explain the advantages of the Hurd.  After
you did that, let the people decide *on their own* whether they
consider GNU/Hurd to be a system they would like to use.

I am convinced that most people will do so.


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