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authorSamuel Thibault <>2015-02-18 00:58:35 +0100
committerSamuel Thibault <>2015-02-18 00:58:35 +0100
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treec2b29e0734d560ce4f58c6945390650b5cac8a1b /open_issues/mission_statement.mdwn
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+[[!meta copyright="Copyright © 2011, 2012, 2013 Free Software Foundation,
+[[!meta license="""[[!toggle id="license" text="GFDL 1.2+"]][[!toggleable
+id="license" text="Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this
+document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or
+any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant
+Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license
+is included in the section entitled [[GNU Free Documentation
+[[!tag open_issue_documentation]]
+# IRC, freenode, #hurd, 2011-10-12
+ <ArneBab> we have a mission statement:
+ <Gorodish> yes
+ <Gorodish> but it's quite wishy washy
+ <Gorodish> considering all the elegant capability Hurd potentially has to
+ offer
+ <antrik> Gorodish: it's true that the mission statement is very
+ abstract... but then, it's hard to put anything more specific into 35
+ words
+ <Gorodish> not with some practice
+ <Gorodish> I notice programers tend to speak and write in terms of what
+ something does
+ <Gorodish> not what it is
+ <Gorodish> the "What is Hurd" is a good example
+ <Gorodish> there's a lot of interesting information there
+ <Gorodish> but the way it's ordered is odd
+ <antrik> a mission statement is not primarily a PR instrument; but rather a
+ guide that allows separating things that benefit the common goal from
+ things that don't...
+ <antrik> I agree that some actual marketing material in addition would be
+ nice :-)
+ <Gorodish> yes
+ <Gorodish> the modesty of Developers that work on FOSS projects never
+ ceases to amaze me
+ <Gorodish> I agree that the informational, factual, results oriented
+ documentation is the primary objective of documenting
+# IRC, freenode, #hurd, 2011-11-25
+ <antrik> heh, nice:
+ <antrik> most of this could be read as a rationale for the Hurd just as
+ well ;-)
+# IRC, freenode, #hurd, 2012-04-06
+ <braunr> LibreMan: the real feature of the hurd is its extensibility
+[[/Extensibility]], [[/advantages]].
+ <braunr> LibreMan: (though it could be improved even further)
+ <LibreMan> braunr: yeah, I keep reading that ... but that sounds too
+ abstract, I can not imagine what useful could that provide to the actual
+ users
+ <braunr> LibreMan: say fuse, but improved
+ <braunr> LibreMan: do you see how useful fuse is ?
+ <braunr> if so, you shouldn't have trouble imagining the gap between linux
+ without fuse and linux with fuse is about the same as linux with fuse and
+ the hurd
+ <braunr> and yes, it's abstract
+ <braunr> translators are not only about file systems
+ <LibreMan> braunr: well, its main advantage is that it's running in
+ user-space and therefore doesn't need root priviledges to mount whatever
+ fs you want?
+ <braunr> no
+ <braunr> you don't need to change the kernel, or implement weird tricks to
+ get what you want working
+ <LibreMan> braunr: okay, but there is fuse for Linux ... so the
+ difference/advantages need to be between Linux WITH fuse and Hurd
+ <braunr> that's what i'm saying
+ <LibreMan> the issue I have is that I do not see why anyone would have any
+ incentive to switch to Hurd
+ <braunr> there isn't much, which is why we stick with unix instead of,
+ e.g. plan9 or other advanced systems
+ <pinotree> try to use fuse on a server where there is no fuse installed
+ <LibreMan> if I want fuse-like functionallity I just install FUSE, no need
+ for Hurd ... so the reson to use it is not there
+ <braunr> LibreMan: read what i wrote
+ <braunr> using the hurd compared to using linux with fuse is about the same
+ as using linux with fuse compared to using linux without fuse
+ <LibreMan> braunr: ah, sorry ... I see
+ <braunr> it's a step further
+ <braunr> in theory, developers can add/remove the components they want,
+ making system development faster and more reliable
+ <braunr> where with unix, you need stuff like user mode linux or a virtual
+ machine
+ <LibreMan> braunr: but in practice it was the opposite so far :)
+ <braunr> not really
+ <braunr> it's a lack of manpower
+ <braunr> not a problem of partice versus theory
+ <braunr> practice*
+ <LibreMan> braunr: what do you think are the reasons why Hurd developement
+ is so slow if it should be faster in theory?
+ <braunr> 17:30 < braunr> it's a lack of manpower
+ <braunr> pay someone to do the job
+ <braunr> :p
+ <LibreMan> braunr: then why does Linux get the manpower but Hurd doesn't?
+ <braunr> $$
+ <LibreMan> braunr: ??
+ <braunr> linux developers are paid
+ <LibreMan> because companies are using it :)
+ <braunr> yes
+ <LibreMan> why are they not using Hurd then?
+ <braunr> because it wasn't reliable enough
+ <LibreMan> Linux wasn't either at some point
+ <braunr> sure
+ <braunr> but when it became, the switch towards its use began
+ <braunr> now that they have something free and already working, there is no
+ point switching again
+ <LibreMan> paid devs join only AFTER volunteers got it to the stage that it
+ was useful to companies
+ <braunr> well linux was easier to develop at the beginning (and is still
+ today because of several kernel hacking features)
+ <braunr> it followed the traditional unix model, nothing was really new
+ about it
+ <LibreMan> braunr: exactly! that's why I think that Hurd needs to have very
+ compelling technical advantages to overcome that barrier
+ <braunr> few people/companies really care about such technical advantages
+ <braunr> they don't care if there are ugly tricks to overcome some problems
+ <LibreMan> you mean about such that Hurd can provide, right?
+ <braunr> it's not elegant, but most of the time they're not even aware of
+ it
+ <braunr> yes
+ <LibreMan> that's eaxctly my point ... most people do not care if it's
+ "elegant" from a programmers POV, they care whether it WORKS
+ <braunr> well yes
+ <braunr> what's your point ?
+ <LibreMan> all I see about Hurd is how "elegant" it is ... but that doesn't
+ matter if it doesn't provide any practical advantages
+ <braunr> you want us to expose a killer feature amazing enough to make the
+ world use our code ?
+ <LibreMan> well, I want Hurd to succeed and try to identify the resons it
+ doesn't
+ <braunr> it does, but not to the point of making people use it
+ <braunr> unix *is* good enough
+ <braunr> same reason plan9 "failed" really
+ <LibreMan> define your idea of Hurd succeeding then, I thought it was to
+ make it useful to the point that people use it :)
+ <braunr> there are many other attempts to make better system architectures
+ <braunr> it is
+ <braunr> people are still using windows you know, and i really don't see
+ why, but it does the work for them
+ <LibreMan> <braunr> you want us to expose a killer feature amazing enough
+ to make the world use our code ? --- YES ;)
+ <braunr> other people can think about the same between unix and the hurd
+ <braunr> LibreMan: well too bad, there is none, because, again, unix isn't
+ that bad
+ <braunr> it doesn't prevent us from making a better system that is usable
+ <LibreMan> to explain my take on this - there are two kind of people, those
+ who care about philosophy behind software (and its consequences, FSF
+ etc.) and those who don't
+ <LibreMan> it's the job of those who do care to make the sw so good that
+ those who do not care switch to it = victory :)
+ <LibreMan> as I said the reasons I want Hurd to succeed are more
+ "political" than technical ... I do not know how many Hurd devs agree
+ with that kind of sentiment but I'd rather want a GNU project to be in
+ the forefront than that of a "benevolent dictator" that doesnt' really
+ care about user freedom
+ <LibreMan> from thechnical POV I agree that Linux isn't that bad ... it's
+ quite good, it's the "behind the scenes" stuff I do not like about it
+ <LibreMan> I'm kind of confused right now ... what exactly is to point of
+ Hurd then? I thought it was to make it good enough or better than Linux
+ so users start using it (privatly or corporate)
+ <LibreMan> is this just a research project that isn't intended to be used
+ by "general population"?
+ <braunr> LibreMan: it's an operating system project
+ <braunr> some people try to make it as good as it can be, but it's not easy
+ <braunr> it's not a pet or research only system
+ <LibreMan> braunr: I see what it is ... I'm struggling to see what is the
+ point of it being an "OS project", what's its intended purpose
+ <braunr> but it doesn't suit all the needs for a general OS yet
+ <braunr> LibreMan: a general purpose OS like most free unices
+ <LibreMan> what are the motivations behind making it as good as it can be
+ <braunr> for us developers ?
+ <LibreMan> yes
+ <braunr> for me, the architecture
+ <LibreMan> whe you say that linux is goos enough then what's the point?
+ <braunr> we can do better
+ <LibreMan> for you it's just a hobby that doesn't have any real goal except
+ challenging yourself to do it?
+ <braunr> because of lack of time, you could say that
+ <LibreMan> so you want Hurd to challenge Linux one day, right?
+ <braunr> challenging isn't the point
+ <braunr> i'd like to be able to use it for my needs
+ <LibreMan> well, that wasn't the right choise of word but to be better than
+ Linux
+ <braunr> again, you miss the point
+ <braunr> i don't care much about hurd vs linux
+ <LibreMan> your own needs, so you do not want others to use it?
+ <braunr> i care about the hurd and what i do
+ <braunr> others would think the same
+ <braunr> they would want it to work for their needs
+ <LibreMan> I'm asking about you, do YOU want others to use it? is that one
+ of your goals?
+ <braunr> not really
+ <braunr> i let them do what they want
+ <LibreMan> ah I see, so it is kind of a hobby project for you - you're
+ doing to for yourself and your own needs
+ <LibreMan> and don't care if anyone else uses it or not
+ <braunr> yes, i don't care much about the politics around such projects tb
+ <braunr> tbh
+ <LibreMan> is this kind of sentiment prevalent is the Hurd dev community?
+ <braunr> i don't work on software to break any benevolent dictator or
+ anyone in particular
+ <braunr> i don't know
+ <braunr> i'd say so, yes
+ <braunr> but not sure
+ <braunr> i'm not saying they don't care about freedom, don't get me wrong
+ <braunr> i'd say we sure prefer free software over open source
+ <braunr> but i don't think people work on the hurd specifically for these
+ reasons, rather than the technical ones
+ <LibreMan> interesting ... from the presentation of the project by
+ outsiders I got the impression that it is significantly about freedom,
+ GNU - that those are the main drivers
+ <braunr> if it really was so, we would have grabbed a bsd variant,
+ relicenced it with GPLv3, and call it FreeGNU or NetGNU
+ <LibreMan> and that's how I approached the project ... maybe I was wrong,
+ I'm kind of disappointed if that's so :) I care about those things a
+ great deal, in fact that's the only reason I care about Hurd really
+ <lcc> the hurd is designed to offer more freedom, in various ways, to the
+ user. freedom from the admin.
+ <lcc> right?
+ <braunr> lcc: that's embedded in the term "extensibility", yes
+ <braunr> lcc: but there are technical solutions for that on other systems
+ as well now
+ <antrik> as for the Hurd, people who said they are interested in it only
+ because of freedom aspects *never* contributed anything significant
+ <antrik> *all* serious contributors are motivated at least equally by the
+ technical merits; often more
+ <antrik> (though the fact that it's a GNU project is what has brought many
+ developers here in the first place...)
+ <LibreMan> antrik: I would phrase it the other way - why do people who have
+ contributed significantly not care about freedom that much? or ... how do
+ you know they don't?
+ <antrik> most of us *do* care about freedem. but it's not our primary
+ motivation. the freedom aspects are just not strong enough to motivate
+ anyone alone
+ <antrik> as braunr already pointed out, if the sole purpose was creating a
+ GNU kernel, there would be *much* more promising venues for that
+ <LibreMan> I do not think so ... if you someone where to just take BSD and
+ rebrand it as AWSOMEnewGNUkernel it wouldn't be looked upon too favorably
+ <LibreMan> there is an honor aspect to it, to have something developed by
+ the community that stands by it
+ <LibreMan> so I do not think it would work
+ <antrik> BSD has forked countless times, and several of these forks became
+ very popular. I don't see why a GNU one shouldn't do well enough
+ <antrik> bat that's beside the point. writing a new boring monolithic
+ UNIX-like kernel from scratch is not that hard
+ <antrik> (as Linus has proven, amonst others...)
+ <antrik> if the sole purpose would be having a GNU kernel, I'd be strongly
+ advocating writing a new monolithic kernel from scratch
+ <LibreMan> antrik: ah, snap! not that hard you say? with all the features
+ Linux has? sure, it's not hard to make a kernel that barely boots but
+ that's not the point, is it? :)
+ <antrik> (yes, even now, with the Hurd being almost usable, I still think
+ it would be easier to get a new monolithic kernel to production quality)
+ <LibreMan> antrik: and here is was braunr who was pitching extensibility
+ and faster developement of Hurd as its advantage - and here you come
+ saying that it would be easier to write monolithic kernel from scratch
+ <LibreMan> get your story striaght guys ;)
+ <antrik> the Hurd makes it easier to develop new features. it's not easier
+ to get it production-ready in the first place
+ <LibreMan> antrik: what's the difference of developing a feature that makes
+ it "production ready" and another one that make it "production ready" for
+ a different use?
+ <antrik> features don't make a system production ready
+ <LibreMan> what makes a system production ready?
+ <LibreMan> what do you consider a "production"?
+ <antrik> supporting enough use cases that a non-trivial number of users
+ have their needs covered; and being stable enough that it's not annoying
+ to use
+ <LibreMan> either it is easier to develop or it isn't ... either it is
+ modular from it's core or it isn't
+ <antrik> well, not only stable enough, but also performant, secure etc.
+ <antrik> wrong
+ <LibreMan> are you saying that the fruits of its modularity will show only
+ after enough modules have been written?
+ <antrik> a modular system with strong isolation is inherently more
+ complicated to get right
+ <LibreMan> that sure is a weird argument to make ...
+ <LibreMan> right ... but when you get it right, the further development is
+ much easier?
+ <antrik> depends. making fundamental changes to how the system works will
+ always be tricky. but adding new stuff that doesn't require fundamental
+ changes, building on the existing foundations, is way easier
+ <antrik> we believe that once we have the fundamentals mostly right, most
+ things people will be adding will fall into the latter catogory
+ <antrik> category
+ <LibreMan> o what's missing to Hurd before it "got it right" and the fast
+ pace development kicks in?
+ <antrik> but so far most of the work is in the former category, meaning
+ progress is slow
+ <LibreMan> because from readin the site it seems the core is pretty much
+ done ... what it needs are all the translators, drivers, user-space tools
+ to make use of that core - is that impression wrong?
+ <antrik> you are missing the point. there is no unified "development pace"
+ measurement. it is easier to add certain things right now. but to get the
+ system production ready, it still requires considerable work on the hard
+ parts
+ <antrik> well, it's not as simple ;-)
+ <LibreMan> are you sure the work on "the hard parts" is ever going to be
+ done? :)
+ <antrik> the core is working, but it is still missing some features, and
+ it's missing lots of performance optimisation and bug fixing
+ <LibreMan> it seems more hard parts pop up every time you think it is
+ almost production ready
+ <antrik> also, we know today that the core could work much better in some
+ regards if we make some major changes. not a priority right now, but
+ something that will have to be addressed in the long run to seriously
+ compete with other systems
+ <antrik> well, no software is ever done :-)
+ <antrik> but I hope we will get to a point where the hard parts work well
+ enough for most people
+ <LibreMan> in fact I remember the design of Hurd was specifically chose by
+ RMS because he thought it would be easier to implement modular system -
+ that was 20 yeras ago? :)
+ <antrik> yes, and he admitted later that he was totally wrong on that :-)
+ <LibreMan> yeah, that was one unlucky choice for GNU ...
+ <antrik> who knows. it's hard to estimate what would have happened it GNU
+ chose a different route back then
+ <LibreMan> so ... Hurd is a hobby project for you too?
+ <LibreMan> or ... what do you hope to achieve by working on Hurd?
+ <LibreMan> I'm really interested in the motivations of people behind Hurd
+ as I'm kind of surprised it's not that much freedom and GNU ...
+ <antrik> it's a hobby project for everyone -- nobody gets paid for working
+ on it
+ <antrik> in the long run, I hope the Hurd to be a good platform for my
+ higher-level ideas. I have a vision of a desktop environment working
+ quite differently from what exists today; and I believe the extensible
+ architecture of the Hurd makes it easier to implement these ideas
+ <LibreMan> that's not what I meant as you may have guessed from my line of
+ reasoning so far
+ <LibreMan> yeah, that's my definition of a hobby project :) not whether one
+ gets payed to do it or not but whether one does it to satisfy their own
+ curiosity
+ <antrik> well, curiosity is clearly too narrow
+ <LibreMan> as far as I'm concerned I'd have a more "political" goal of
+ influencing the wider world to move toward more freedom
+ <antrik> but hackers never work on volunteer projects except to scratch
+ their own itch, or to work on something they are genuinely interested
+ in. nobody hacks free software just to save the world
+ <LibreMan> I find some technical aspects very interesting and fun but if
+ they wouldn't further the goal of more freedom they'd be without purpose
+ to me
+ <antrik> just think of the GNU high priority projects list -- it has zery
+ effect
+ <antrik> zero
+ <LibreMan> yeah ... and I think that is a real shame
+ <LibreMan> I keep thinking that it's because most hackers do not realize
+ the importance of freedom and the consequences of not having it
+ <antrik> it's a shame that some people at the FSF seem to believe they can
+ tell hackers what to work on :-P
+ <LibreMan> I do not think anybody at FSF actually believes that
+ <LibreMan> they believe as I do that we can persuade hackers to work on
+ things after they themselves recognise the significance of it
+ <antrik> no. there are many many hackers who genuinely believe in
+ supporting software freedom (both in the Hurd and in other GNU projects)
+ -- but there are none who would work on projects they are not personally
+ interested in because of that
+ <LibreMan> well, how does one become "personally interested" in a project?
+ surely it's not something you;re born with ... after recognising a
+ significance of some project some may become personally interested in it
+ - and that's the point ;)
+ <antrik> well, if I you mean nobody realises that software freedom is so
+ important they should work on it instead of doing things they actually
+ enjoy... they yes, I guess you are right :-P
+ <antrik> significance is subjective. just because something may be
+ important to the general public, doesn't mean I personally care about it
+ <LibreMan> you keep projecting your own concerns into it
+ <LibreMan> just because you're not interested in something doesn't mean
+ someone else isn't
+ <LibreMan> you approach it from the POV that omebody is telling YOU what
+ you should do ...
+ <LibreMan> that is not the case
+ <antrik> LibreMan: well, but there are obviously things no hackers care
+ about -- or otherwise there would be no need for the high priority
+ projects list... it's a list of things that would be important for
+ software freedom, but nobody is interested in working on. and having a
+ list of them won't change that fact
+ <LibreMan> antrik: why do you feel entitled to speak for all hackers? the
+ projects are high priority exactly because there isn;t enough people
+ working on them, if they were they wouldn't be high priority :)
+ <LibreMan> so maybe you have cause and effect mixed up ...
+ <LibreMan> there is no need to list office suite as hight priority because
+ there is LibreOffice, if there wasn't I'm sure it would be right there on
+ the priority list
+ <antrik> LibreMan: err... how is that different from what I said?
+ <antrik> these projects are there because there are not enough people
+ working on them -- i.e. hackers are not interested in them
+ <LibreMan> you said it in a way the implied that hackers are not interested
+ in working on projects that are required for providing freedom - but
+ mostly there are, it's just a few project where aren't - and those are
+ listed as high priority to bring attention to them
+ <LibreMan> well, maybe after seeing them on a high priority list some
+ hackes become interested in them - that is the point :)
+ <antrik> yes, that's what I implied. the fact that there are projects
+ hackers aren't working on, although they would be important for software
+ freedom, proves that this is not sufficient motivation for volunteers
+ <antrik> if software freedom alone would motivate hackers, there would be
+ enough people working on important projects
+ <LibreMan> who ever claimed that freedom alone motivated hackers? :)
+ <antrik> but there aren't. we have the list, and people are *still* not
+ working on these projects -- q.e.d.
+ <LibreMan> I do not get what you're trying to prove
+ <antrik> the track record so far clearly shows that hackers do *not* become
+ interested in working on these projects just because they are on the list
+ <antrik> err... you pretty much claimed that Hurd hackers should be
+ motivated by freedom alone
+ <antrik> and expressed great disappointment that we aren't
+ <braunr> LibreMan: you expected the hurd developers to share the common
+ goal of freedom mainly, and now you're saying you don't think hackers
+ would work for freedom alone ?
+ <LibreMan> freedom mainly == freedom alone?
+ <braunr> antrik: would you see an objection to using netbsd as a code base
+ for a mach clone ?
+ <braunr> LibreMan: you said share the common goal of freedom
+ <LibreMan> you're twisting my word to suit your own line of reasoning
+ <braunr> implying we all agree this is the priority
+ <LibreMan> being a priority doesn't mean it is there "alone", does it?
+ <braunr> it means it's the only one
+ <LibreMan> in another words, do you reject the possibility of enjoying
+ working on a project and doing it for freedom? because it seems you
+ somehow do not allow for that possibility
+ <braunr> if we agree on it, we can't have multiple priorities per people
+ <braunr> yes, that's what we're saying
+ <braunr> freedom isn't a goal
+ <braunr> it's a constraint
+ <braunr> the project *has* to be free
+ <LibreMan> so if you;re doing something to achieve freedom you can not BY
+ DEFINITION enjoy it? :D
+ <braunr> LibreMan: more or less, yes
+ <braunr> i enjoy the technical aspect, i advocate freedom
+ <LibreMan> then I've just disproven you :) I do things for freedom and
+ enjoy them
+ <braunr> no, not for freedom
+ <LibreMan> yes, for freedom
+ <braunr> i'm telling you it's not what motivates me to write code
+ <LibreMan> if I did not believe in freedom I wouldn't do them
+ <LibreMan> and I'm not talking about you
+ <braunr> i believe in freedom, my job consists of developing mostly
+ proprietary software
+ <braunr> how can you disprove me if you're not talking about me on this ?
+ <LibreMan> you said it's not possible IN PRINCIPLE, well antrik did and you
+ agreed - if you did not follow his line of argument then do not try to
+ continue where he left off ;)
+ <braunr> what project have you worked on ?
+ <LibreMan> my personal ones, nothing big
+ <braunr> so you're not a hacker, you're excluded from the group considered
+ <LibreMan> I'll tell you when it cathes on :)
+ <braunr> (bam)
+ <LibreMan> so now you decide who is and is not a hacker, well ... :)
+ <braunr> :)
+ <LibreMan> but ok, let's not talk about me I concede that I'm a lousy one
+ if any :)
+ <LibreMan> what about RMS, do you consider him a hacker?
+ <braunr> i think he became a hacker for other reasons than freedom
+ <LibreMan> would you say he is not motivated by freedom (if that can be
+ even concieved of)? :)
+ <braunr> and sees freedom as necessary too
+ <braunr> i can't say, i don't know him
+ <antrik> braunr: nope. in fact we discussed this in the past. someone even
+ worked on GSoC project bringing Hurd/Mach features to NetBSD -- but AFAIK
+ nothing came out of it
+ <braunr> antrik: ok
+ <LibreMan> well, he is pretty vocal with plenty of writings ... on the
+ other hand you seemed to know me well enough to proclaim me a non-hacker
+ <braunr> i don't know why he worked on emacs and gcc rather than the hurd
+ :p
+ <braunr> but something other than freedom must have motivated such choices
+ <antrik> I'm uncertain though whether NetBSD is a more useful base than
+ Linux. it would offer advantages on the licensing front, but it would not
+ offer the advantage that people could just run it on their existing
+ systems...
+ <LibreMan> gcc seems pretty significant for Linux lol
+ <braunr> antrik: true
+ <LibreMan> or GNU
+ <braunr> antrik: there are already system call stubs, and the VM is very,
+ very similar
+ <braunr> LibreMan: the hurd was too, at the time
+ <LibreMan> he can not work on everything
+ <braunr> so he ahd to choose, and based his choice on something else than
+ freedom (since all these projects are free)
+ <braunr> i guess he enjoyed emacs more
+ <antrik> LibreMan: RMS is not much of a practicing hacker anymore
+ nowadays...
+ <antrik> braunr: yeah, that's another advantage of using NetBSD as a
+ base... it might be easier to do
+ <braunr> LibreMan: what was your original question again ?
+ <braunr> i've been somewhat ironic since that trademark stuff, i'm serious
+ again now
+ <antrik> LibreMan: again, freedom is a factor for many of us; but not the
+ primary motivation
+ <antrik> (as braunr put, being free software is mandatory for us; but that
+ doesn't mean the main reason for working on the Hurd is some indirect
+ benefit for the free software movement...)
+ <LibreMan> braunr: the original goal was to understand the strong points of
+ Hurd to I can help communicate them to other hackers who might be
+ interested in Hurd
+ <LibreMan> because I wanted it to succeed to advance freedom more
+ <antrik> LibreMan: well, practice what you preach ;-)
+ <LibreMan> but now that I've founf that not even devs themselves are that
+ much interested in freedom I do not have that desire anymore
+ <antrik> you will hardly motivate other hackers to work on something you do
+ not even work on yourself...
+ <LibreMan> and focus my attention somewhere else
+ <antrik> [sigh]
+ <braunr> well, you can now state that the hurd has an elegant architecture
+ allowing many ugly hacks to disappear, and that it doesn't yet handle
+ sata drives or usb keys or advandced multicast routing or ...
+ <antrik> LibreMan: how about you listen to what we are saying?
+ <LibreMan> antrik: so I should work on everything in the world that
+ advances freedom or shut up?
+ <antrik> LibreMan: we *are* interested in freedom. we would work on nothing
+ else than a free software system. it's just not the primary motivation
+ for working on the Hurd
+ <antrik> if you primary motivation is advancing free software, the Hurd is
+ probably indeed not the right project to work on. other projects are more
+ important for that
+ <antrik> and that's got nothing to do with our priorities
+ <antrik> it's simply a matter of what areas free software is most lacking
+ in. the kernel is not one of them.
+ <braunr> antrik: my primary concern with netbsd are drivers
+ <LibreMan> I naively assumed that people working on a GNU project will
+ share GNU vlaues, instead I find that some of them poke fun at its high
+ priority projects
+ <braunr> i poke fun at you
+ <braunr> because you think trademark has any real value on the free
+ software community
+ <LibreMan> braunr: I see, congratulations ... I hope you enjoy it
+ <antrik> if there were no suitable free software kernels around, many
+ people might work on the Hurd mostly to advance free software. but as it
+ stands, having a GNU kernel is secondary
+ <braunr> yes, freedom is a primary goal when there are no free alternatives
+ <antrik> LibreMan: you are accusing us of not sharing GNU values, which is
+ quite outrageous I must say
+ <braunr> LibreMan: actually no, i'd prefer converstation with someone who
+ understands what i'm saying
+ <braunr> even if he contradicts me, like antrik often does
+ <braunr> (but he's usually right)
+ <braunr> LibreMan: you just don't want to accept some (many) of us are here
+ more for technical reasons than ethical ones
+ <LibreMan> antrik: well, some of your reasoning and tone would seem to
+ suggest so ...
+ <braunr> i didn't see antrik being particularly aggressive, but personally,
+ i react badly to stupidity
+ <LibreMan> braunr: WHAT? I've never said anything about what you should or
+ should not do or believe
+ <braunr> you clearly expected something when you first arrived
+ <LibreMan> I said I personally expected more enhusiastic people concerning
+ GNU and freedom but that was my personal expectaion and my personal
+ disappointment
+ <antrik> what makes you think we are not enthusiastic about GNU and
+ software freedom?
+ <braunr> more enthusiastic is vague, you expected us to be some sort of
+ freedom fighters
+ <antrik> just for the record, I'm part of the German core team of the FSFE
+ <braunr> i even stated early that we're mostly part of the free software
+ rather than open source movement, and you still find our point of view
+ disappointing
+ <antrik> still, it's not my major motivation for working on the Hurd
+ <antrik> I don't see any contradiction in that
+ <LibreMan> I don;t know maybe I misunderstand you, I do not mean any
+ disrespect
+ <braunr> me neither
+ <LibreMan> maybe "hackers" truly do think differently than I expected them
+ to in general and it's not specific to Hurd
+ <braunr> well the very word hacker describe someone interested by "hacking"
+ down something to get to understand it
+ <braunr> it's strongly technical
+ <LibreMan> antrik: why are you a core team member of th FSFE? what do you
+ do there and why? is that not motivated by the desire for more freedom?
+ <braunr> and we're lucky, many of them aren't deeply concerned with money
+ and secrecy, and prefer being open about their work
+ <braunr> you still don't get it ...
+ <antrik> LibreMan: of course it is
+ <antrik> and hacking free software in general also is (partly) motivated by
+ that
+ <antrik> but hacking on the Hurd specifically not so much
+ <braunr> 20:23 < antrik> LibreMan: we *are* interested in freedom. we would
+ work on nothing else than a free software system. it's just not the
+ primary motivation for working on the Hurd
+ <braunr> he already answered your question there
+ <antrik> (as I already said, it *is* in fact part of the motivation in my
+ case... just not the major part)
+ <LibreMan> antrik: but if it ever achieved wide success and you would be
+ asy on a "board" to decide future direction would you choose for exacmple
+ to prevent TiVO-ization over wider adpotion?
+ <braunr> we already answered that too
+ <antrik> LibreMan: that's actually not even for us to decide, as long as we
+ are an official GNU project
+ <antrik> but of course we are a GNU project because we *do* believe in
+ software freedom, and obviously wouldn't accept Tivoisation
+ <braunr> (and our discussion about using netbsd as a code base is a
+ relevant example of license concerns)
+ <LibreMan> I'm really trying to get to the core of "not motivated by
+ freedom" but being "interested in freedom" ... I really do not get that,
+ if you are interested in freedom wouldn't you want a project you work on
+ being used to advance it as much as possible and therefore be also
+ motivated to do it the best while enjoying it to achieve the goal of more
+ freedom since you value it that much?
+ <braunr> LibreMan: except for the GPLv2 vs GPLv3 debate, i don't see where
+ there can be a conflict between freedom and technical interest
+ <LibreMan> braunr: the issues around freedom are mainly not technical
+ ... GPLv2 and GPLv3 is also not about technical interests
+ <braunr> that's my problem with you, i fail to see where the problem you
+ think of is
+ <LibreMan> it tends to be about the possibility to extract money and impose
+ your will on the users which turns out to be highly profitable and
+ politicaly desirable in some instances
+ <LibreMan> of course it's technically the best to open-source but how are
+ you going to sell a product like that? that is the main question
+ troubling most corporations
+ <LibreMan> ok, I'm not going to bore you any more ;) I found out what I
+ needed to know ... now I'm going to try to forget about Hurd and focus on
+ something else where my help can be more effective at achieving what I
+ want ;) good luck with your endavours
+ <antrik> LibreMan: of course we hope for the Hurd to advance the cause of
+ freedom, just like any free software we would work on... still, it's not
+ the primary reason why we work on the Hurd, instead of the myriads of
+ other free software projects out there
+# IRC, freenode, #hurd, 2012-04-09
+ <antono> what is the most impressive thing about hurd you wold like to
+ promote?
+ <antono> killing feature
+ <antono> i've created some simple hurd screencasts here
+ <antono> but probably i could share something more interesting :)
+ <antrik> antono: if we had such an obvious killer feature, we wouldn't have
+ to struggle ;-)
+ <antrik> the problem is that the advantages of the Hurd architecture are
+ too abstract for the vast majority of people to take them seriously
+ <antrik> IMHO the most interesting part of the Hurd is the fully
+ decentralised (and thus infinitely extensible) VFS mechanism
+ <antrik> but even that is very abstract...
+ <antono> antrik: cand i do somenthing relly fundamental with hurd
+ translator?
+ <antono> for example i hate old school unix FHS
+ <antono> I would like to have only /Users/me and /System/GNU
+ <antono> and i would like to only see it, but behinde the scenes it should
+ be Debian with FHS layout
+ <antono> is it possible?
+ <antrik> antono: of course. not sure translators offer much advantage over
+ FUSE in this case though... it doesn't really change the functionality of
+ the VFS; only rearranges the tree a bit
+ <antrik> (might even be doable with standard Linux features)
+# IRC, freenode, #hurd, 2012-07-25
+ <braunr> because it has design problems, because it has implementation
+ problems, lots of problems, and far too few people to keep up with other
+ systems that are already dominating
+ <braunr> also, considering other research projects get much more funding
+ than we do, they probably have a better chance at being adopted
+ <rah> you consider the Hurd to be a research project?
+ <braunr> and as they're more recent, they sometimes overcome some of the
+ issues we have
+ <braunr> yes and no
+ <braunr> yes because it was, at the time of its creation, and it hasn't
+ changed much, and there aren't many (any?) other systems with such a
+ design
+ <braunr> and no because the hurd is actually working, and being released as
+ part of something like debian
+ <braunr> which clearly shows it's able to do the stuff it was intended for
+ <braunr> i consider it a technically very interesting project for
+ developers who want to know more about microkernel based extensible
+ systems
+ <antrik> rah: I don't expect the Hurd to achieve world domination, because
+ most people consider Linux "good enough" and will stick with it
+ <antrik> I for my part think though we could do better than Linux (in
+ certain regards I consider important), which is why I still consider it
+ interesting and worthwhile
+ <nowhere_man> I think that in some respect the OS scene may evolve a bit
+ like the PL one, where everyone progressively adopts ideas from Lisp but
+ doesn't want to do Lisp: everyone slowly shifts towards what µ-kernels
+ OSes have done from the start, but they don't want µ-kernels...
+ <braunr> nowhere_man: that's my opinion too
+ <braunr> and this is why i think something like the hurd still has valuable
+ purpose
+ <nowhere_man> braunr: in honesty, I still ponder the fact that it's my
+ coping mechanism to accept being a Lisp and Hurd fan ;-)
+ <braunr> nowhere_man: it can be used that way too
+ <braunr> functional programming is getting more and more attention
+ <braunr> so it's fine if you're a lisp fan really
+# IRC, freenode, #hurd, 2013-02-04
+ <civodul> BTW, it's weird that the mission statement linked from
+ is in weblog/ and written in the first person
+ <braunr> yes
+ <braunr> very :)