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SHENGTON 01-11-2009 08:41 AM

Question regarding this line "Free taken as in free speech, not free beer"
 
Hi experts, good day. :)

I have a question regarding this line "Free taken as in free speech, not free beer.". Richard Stallman said that line. What does it mean?

I'll wait for your answers.

Thanks and God bless. :)

acid_kewpie 01-11-2009 08:45 AM

free speech means free as in liberty. Not being in prison etc...

free beer means zero cost. i.e. no financial element. You might only get your beer if you swear allegiance to Bush / God / Satan, which affects your liberty, but you still got it without paying.

SHENGTON 01-11-2009 08:50 AM

Thanks Sir acid_kewpie. But why some Linux Distros they offer free CD and pay CD like Ubuntu?

XavierP 01-11-2009 08:59 AM

Some will offer free (no cost) CDs because they have sufficient finances so that they can afford it - Canonical has a large pot of money and many contributors. Others do not have this and need to cover the cost of the media, the creation of the CD and post and packing.

David the H. 01-11-2009 09:04 AM

Stallman's goal has always been to ensure that there are always FREE options available in computing--that you always have the ability to use your own hardware and software without restriction. Whether or not FOSS software costs money doesn't matter so much; what's important is that it's not burdened by limitations on what you can do with it.

What's ironic here is that the whole purpose of the statement was to point out the difference between free and FREE in a short, easy-to-understand sound byte. You're not supposed to have to explain the explanation. :D

SHENGTON 01-11-2009 09:44 AM

Ok now I got it. Free means you're free to modify, study, copy, and give it away but not the price. Am I right?

Some Linux distributions will sell but they are not selling the software but the services. Am I right again?

David the H. 01-11-2009 11:40 AM

That's right. Now you've got it. Although it's not actually prohibited to sell the software itself, at least under most FOSS licenses. The requirement is generally that the source code for the program must be made freely available, so you just aren't going to find many people willing to pay for it.

And yes, it's mostly in services and/or hardware that the companies make their money. But many of the operations also offer a mix of open and closed-source applications. There's no rule against running proprietary software on a free platform, after all. Also, companies can maintain control over their own trademarks, so if you want to redistribute RedHat's software, for example, you have to strip out all their trademarks and call it something else. Mozilla likewise controls the trademarks for Firefox, which is why Debian has rebranded their own version as iceweasel.

pixellany 01-11-2009 12:02 PM

It's all about business models....

With proprietary products, you make money by controlling who can make the product.

With OpenSource SW, you need another way of making money. The typical method involves providing some kind of service--packaging, documentation, support, embedding in a final product, etc.

Imagine if MS were forced to release the Windows source code, and were then dependent on their support department to make money.

jay73 01-11-2009 12:13 PM

Quote:

Imagine if MS were forced to release the Windows source code, and were then dependent on their support department to make money.
Might be a good idea. They would make a fortune finally fixing all their problems.

SHENGTON 01-11-2009 10:37 PM

Thank you so much guys.

brianL 01-12-2009 05:53 AM

Where do I get all this free beer everybody's talking about? I've been in all the pubs in Oldham asking for it, but they just laugh and throw me out. :D

onebuck 01-12-2009 07:40 AM

Hi,

You need to carry the GNU with you. :) Take the brown one to match the decor along with the beer. :)

Make sure that the GNU is service minded thus allowing entrance. Be sure to wear some dark shades.


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