Re: On illegal software in an academic assignment ...

Subject: Re: On illegal software in an academic assignment ...
From: Owen Green (
Date: Sun Nov 13 2005 - 10:11:31 EST

Richard Wentk wrote:

> Except that open source is mostly just a synonym for a collection of
> programmer's sand pits that are rarely even half as good as the
> professionally produced products they're supposed to be replacing.

See my reply to Rick - I was meaning as an alternative to craacking.
However, what you say about quality isn't really true - cf Apache et al.
There is an awful lot of commercial junk out there as well, which people
seem to disregard when making this point.

> PD is an excellent case in point. It offers about 25% of Max/MSP. The
> 'free' part is nice, but really - you're missing out on a lot by not
> getting the real thing.

As I understand PD (which I don't very well), it is fundamentally a
/different/ thing, albeit one that doesn't look anything like as pretty
or have very good docs.

> Besides, a rather frightening number of OpenSource projects do what PD
> did, which is stall once the original designer and innovator loses
> interest in them.

The amount of traffic I get on the PD list suggests that it hasn't
stalled in any way. What gives you that impression?

> So while I'm no fan of huge corporations, I've yet to see any evidence
> that OpenSource projects offer *users* - not programmers or web geeks,
> but end users - a realistic alternative on the desktop. If there is an
> ethical and pragmatic alternative, OpenSource doesn't seem to be it.

Yet. IME, the end-usability and usefulness of OSS offerings has improved
massively in the last few years alone, and at the very least is making
the corps change the ways they do some things, /and/ is offering the
intrepid and poor a legal way in to doing exciting things with their
computer like making music.

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