Older blog entries for mrd (starting at number 57)

US-AUS Free Trade Agreement: Linux Australia has developed a How you can fight the FTA webpage available for the Australian Free and Open-Source community. It links our position paper on the FTA, our short summaries on software patents and anti-circumvention, not to mention a link to the Petition On-Line which you should sign if you think these FTA treaty will take away your rights. We also include background info on the issues, and list ways of finding out who your local member or senator is, and what you should say to them.

We're getting some press on the issue too. The more the better. One of the committees stop accepting submissions on April 13 (Easter Tuesday) and the other on April 30 - not long to mobilise the Free and Open-Source community in Australia. Please do your bit where you can.

hypatia: You aren't allowed to make your submission to either the lower house or senate committees public at all. The committee will make submissions public later at their own discretion. Linux Australia is combatting this by making their position paper available on which their submission will be based.

5 Apr 2004 (updated 6 Apr 2004 at 03:35 UTC) »
The US-Australia "Free" Trade Agreement (FTA): Linux Australia just released its position paper on the FTA and the negative effect it will have on Open-Source in Australia. This is a very important issue, so if you are in Australia, consider writing a letter to your local member of parliament, submitting something to the senate committee considering this treaty, or raising awareness of the issues in your local IT community. Our mailing list will soon provide details on how you can get involved - but don't wait - the senate committee submission period closes on April 30.
GNOME 2.6: Good write-ups over on ars and this one by Sayamindu Dasgupta. The next step to WorldDomination(TM) starts today...

Rocking interview with rml on ars including stuff on Project Utopia - desktop nirvana!

OT: Only a couple of days left to own a piece of history - FreeBSD hacker Greg Lehey's beard.

26 Mar 2004 (updated 28 Mar 2004 at 23:11 UTC) »

Job interview yesterday. Went well.

Useful Project Utopia link: http://www.joeshaw.org/#20040308.

Interesting article about whether Looking Glass will go open-source. A big test for Sun to see if they grok open-source, or whether they're just trying to skim the profits.

Could this influence the Thoughts on the future of open source desktop development (aka Java vs C#) discussion by some cool dudes in the GNOME world? Is this body of code cool enough to make a difference? What if Sun open sourced Java and made Looking Glass technologies patent free to [L]GPL projects? Can this be done legally? Is this an NPL situation? Is the eye candy good enough to influence what we hack on? Is GNOME destined to not make a decision on these technologies going forward? Will Xim^WNovell continue down the C# path anyway? Will Sun stay stubborn on Java staying closed source?

It shall be an interesting time to see how all this pans out :-)

15 Mar 2004 (updated 15 Mar 2004 at 02:04 UTC) »
Linux Australia : We issued a press release about the USA-Australia Free Trade Agreement (FTA), along with some summary position papers (on anti-circumvention laws and software patents) about how all this could be very bad news for the Australian software industry in general, and the Open Source community in particular.

As part of all this, we've updated OpenSource.Org.Au, your portal to Open Source in Australia. This is long overdue - end-users, business, government, education, and the press all want to know about how Open Source is a good thing right now. Our time in the spot light is now!

[OT]: One of my birthday presents was a CLA-4 adaptor for my Olympus C750UZ.   Woohoo!

9 Mar 2004 (updated 9 Mar 2004 at 03:19 UTC) »
Java, Glow, Open-Source and Sun Microsystems.:

"Of course this is why no interesting part of the Java Desktop System today uses Java, because there's no GPL-compatible Java implementation and thus no wide usage of Java in the open source desktop community. " -- hp #

Wow. Havoc just hit the nail on the head.

Please Sun, open-source Java!

C#: So I needed a reference to a string object, so that some XML could call the String.Concat() method to concatenate 2 strings in XML.

This will be trivial I think - inside my XML parsing engine we create a new keyword, making available a string object:

case "STRING":
    currObj = new String();

Ahh, but there's no constructor that takes zero arguments. Looking through the API docs, there's a version that takes a char *, a char[], a string etc for a total of 8 variants - but no default zero param constructor! None of these are really suitable for this particular purpose (this is managed code, no pointers for you!). Why no standard default constructor of String()? Java has always had that available - another trap for people writing in both C# and Java.

The simple work around was:

case "STRING":
    String foo = "";
    currObj = foo;

so I could then do something like this in XML:

<ACTION NAME="CallMethod" UID="202" REFERENCE="{SetProp Application, SomeLabel, {STRING.Concat(XMLVAR1, XMLVAR2)})}"/>

Not a big deal, but another of those simple differences between these two languages (really their supplied library APIs) that just needn't be there. The level of compatibility at a source code level could be better.

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