Five Flames From Software Engineers!

From here: http://www.art.net/~hopkins/Don/text/rms-vs-doctor.html

1: Richard Stallman Verses Birth Announcements

(Kabuki-West is a mailing list for planning dinners and get-togethers in the San Francisco Bay Area)

Could people please not use this list to announce information of no particular interest to the people on the list? Hundreds of thousands of babies are born every day. While the whole phenomenon is menacing, one of them by itself is not newsworthy. Nor is it a difficult achievement--even some fish can do it. (Now, if you were a seahorse, it would be more interesting, since it would be the male that gave birth.)

Following your example, I might send the list an announcement whenever a new GNU program is written. That happens less often than babies are born, it does the world a lot more good, it reflects more conscious creativity and hard work, and some of the readers might actually find the information useful. Even so, I think most of the readers would consider this outside the scope and purpose of the list. Clearly that goes double for babies.

Of course, we have another place for announcements of new GNU programs. If some people like to read birth announcements, perhaps you should set up a suitable list or newsgroup. Perhaps rec.births? (While you're at it, start rec.deaths for obituaries--they're usually more interesting to read.)

These birth announcements also spread the myth that having a baby is something to be proud of, which fuels natalist pressure, which leads to pollution, extinction of wildlife, poverty, and ultimately mass starvation.

Perhaps the people who have decided to have no children should start making proud announcements, so as to set a better example. I could start. I'm sure everyone on this list will be glad to know I don't plan to reproduce myself.

Kabuki-West Replies: In summary:
  • Richard: Fuck off. -Eliot Lear
  • Fuck you. -Paul Traina
    • No, thanks. I don't want to have children. -RMS
      • good -Peter Shipley
  • Fuck you, Richard. -Brent Chapman
    • Boy, I really am getting popular. I haven't had so many offers before in just one day. -RMS
      • You mean that you are in no danger of getting laid. -Elaine Richards
  • Richard, You appear to be unclear on the concept. -Joe Buck
  • Richard, what Paul and Brent so succinctly expressed is quite approprate. ... To sum up: Fuck you. -David Muir Sharnoff
  • Please send your "fucks" via personal mail and refrain from using Kabuki-west for such messages. -Lile Elam
  • It appears that the problem of natalism is even worse than I thought. -RMS
  • Perhaps some people took my message as an expression of personal hostility. It was not based on hostility, just annoyance at a general practice on the occasion of one instance. If anyone felt bad because of misunderstanding this, I regret the unintended result, and I hope this message corrects the matter. -RMS
  • Wow, I think yall who sent "fucks" to the mailing list need to go back and re read RMS's msg. Has breeding become such a religion that the mere mention of a an oposing view ignites a fury of vile replies? If those people who sent "fucks" really want to feel strongly about something, maybe they should move to Iran and start worshiping Kholmeni or something. -Edjik
  • You people just have no sense of humor. I thought the original message was pretty funny and made a few good points (if it didn't, nobody would have been offended). I guess it's a shock for smug self-righteous breeders to learn that not everybody in the world thinks babies are cute and special. -Wayne A. Christopher
    • Finally, someone read the message as it was intended to be read. -RMS
  • No, I think you are correct about the purpose of the list, but parents seem to be so flushed with hormones after they have managed to accomplish the same act that single celled life does, that they revert to the brain level of that afore-mentioned life. I appreciate your choice, the same one that I and my partner have made. -Doug Faunt
  • I'm somewhat surprised by the idea that a mere message from me could torpedo the happiness of parents. I'd think it wouldn't even come close to doing that. Not that I wanted to do that. The most I thought it could do was to discourage the posting birth announcements. -RMS


Next, from here: http://oreilly.com/catalog/opensources/book/appa.html

2: Linus Torvalds Flames Andy Tenenbaum (who criticized the Linux kernel for its monolithic architecture and portability)

"I was in the U.S. for a couple of weeks, so I haven't commented much on LINUX (not that I would have said much had I been around), but for what it is worth, I have a couple of comments now."

"As most of you know, for me MINIX is a hobby, something that I do in the evening when I get bored writing books and there are no major wars, revolutions, or senate hearings being televised live on CNN. My real job is a professor and researcher in the area of operating systems......"

You use this as an excuse for the limitations of minix? Sorry, but you loose: I've got more excuses than you have, and linux still beats the pants of minix in almost all areas. Not to mention the fact that most of the good code for PC minix seems to have been written by Bruce Evans.

Re 1: you doing minix as a hobby - look at who makes money off minix, and who gives linux out for free. Then talk about hobbies. Make minix freely available, and one of my biggest gripes with it will disappear. Linux has very much been a hobby (but a serious one: the best type) for me: I get no money for it, and it's not even part of any of my studies in the university. I've done it all on my own time, and on my own machine.

Re 2: your job is being a professor and researcher: That's one hell of a good excuse for some of the brain-damages of minix. I can only hope (and assume) that Amoeba doesn't suck like minix does.


If I had made an OS that had problems with a multithreading filesystem, I wouldn't be so fast to condemn others: in fact, I'd do my damndest to make others forget about the fiasco. [ yes, I know there are multithreading hacks for minix, but they are hacks, and bruce evans tells me there are lots of race conditions ]


Next, from here: http://esr.ibiblio.org/?p=208

3: Eric S. Raymond Response to Microsoft Recruiter (Mike Walters)

From: "Mike Walters (Search Wizards)"


I am a member of the Microsoft Central Sourcing Team. Microsoft is
seeking world class engineers to help create products that help people
and businesses throughout the world realize their full potential.

Your name and contact info was brought to my attention as someone who
could potentially be a contributor at Microsoft. I would love an
opportunity to speak with you in detail about your interest in a career
at Microsoft, along with your experience, background and qualifications...


Mike Walters
CST Senior Recruiter

One Microsoft Way
Redmond, WA 98052

Eric Raymond: "I called Mike Walters, who told me my name had been passed to him by his research team. I indicated to him that I thought somebody was probably having a little joke at his expense, and promised him an email reply. Here is my reply in its entirety":

To: "Mike Walters (Search Wizards)"

I'd thank you for your offer of employment at Microsoft, except
that it indicates that either you or your research team (or both)
couldn't get a clue if it were pounded into you with baseball bats.
What were you going to do with the rest of your afternoon, offer jobs
to Richard Stallman and Linus Torvalds? Or were you going to stick to
something easier, like talking Pope Benedict into presiding at a
Satanist orgy?

If you had bothered to do five seconds of background checking, you
might have discovered that I am the guy who responded to Craig
Mundie's "Who are you?" with "I'm your worst nightmare", and that I've
in fact been something pretty close to your company's worst nightmare
since about 1997. You've maybe heard about this "open source" thing?
You get one guess who wrote most of the theory and propaganda for it
and talked IBM and Wall Street and the Fortune 500 into buying in.
But don't think I'm trying to destroy your company. Oh, no; I'd be
just as determined to do in any other proprietary-software monopoly,
and the community I helped found is well on its way to accomplishing
that goal.

On the day *I* go to work for Microsoft, faint oinking sounds will be
heard from far overhead, the moon will not merely turn blue but
develop polkadots, and hell will freeze over so solid the brimstone
will go superconductive.

But I must thank you for dropping a good joke on my afternoon. On
that hopefully not too far distant day that I piss on Microsoft's
grave, I sincerely hope none of it will splash on you.

Cordially yours,
Eric S. Raymond


Next, from: http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.linux.kernel/1063230

4: Torvalds Verses Poettering On Kernel Space Verses User Space Modification (this was about a recently released kernel patch to improve performance)

On Tue, Nov 16, 2010 at 9:03 AM, Lennart Poettering
0pointer.de> wrote:
> Binding something like this to TTYs is just backwards.

Numbers talk, bullshit walks.

The numbers have been quoted. The clear interactive behavior has been seen.

And you're just full of bullshit.

Come back when you have something working and with numbers and better
interactive performance. Until then, nobody cares.


On Tue, 16.11.10 09:11, Linus Torvalds (torvalds linux-foundation.org) wrote:

> On Tue, Nov 16, 2010 at 9:03 AM, Lennart Poettering
> 0pointer.de> wrote:
> >
> > Binding something like this to TTYs is just backwards.
> Numbers talk, bullshit walks.
> The numbers have been quoted. The clear interactive behavior has been seen.

Here's my super-complex patch btw, to achieve exactly the same thing
from userspace without involving any kernel or systemd patching and
kernel-side logic. Simply edit your own ~/.bashrc and add this to the end:

if [ "$PS1" ] ; then
mkdir -m 0700 /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu/user/$$
echo $$ > /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu/user/$$/tasks

Then, as the superuser do this:

mount -t cgroup cgroup /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu -o cpu
mkdir -m 0777 /sys/fs/cgroup/cpu/user

Done. Same effect. However: not crazy.

I am not sure I myself will find the time to prep some 'numbers' for
you. They'd be the same as with the kernel patch anyway. But I am sure
somebody else will do it for you...


Lennart Poettering - Red Hat, Inc.


Next, from here: https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=638477#c129

5: Lunis Torvalds Vs. Blaming Errors On Other Software (flash player bug in fedora)

Linus Torvalds 2010-11-30 20:50:25 EST

(In reply to comment #128)
> In Adobe's software.
> > I'm no great fan of flash but it's an essential part of life on the web these
> > days and I had thought that the Fedora project had finally put its days of
> > broken flash support behind it.
> Fedora's flash support is fine. Adobe's software is broken.

Quite frankly, I find your attitude to be annoying and downright stupid.

How hard can it be to understand the following simple sentence:


Pushing the blame around doesn't help anybody. The only thing that helps is
Fedora being helpful, not being obstinate.

Also, the fact is, that from a Q&A standpoint, a memcpy() that "just does the
right thing" is simply _better_. Quoting standards is just stupid, when there's
two simple choices: "it works" or "it doesn't work because bugs happen".

Standards are paper. I use paper to wipe my butt every day. That's how much
that paper is worth.

Reality is what matters. When glibc changed memcpy, it created problems. Saying
"not my problem" is irresponsible when it hurts users.

And pointing fingers at Adobe and blaming them for creating bad software is
_doubly_ irresponsible if you are then not willing to set a higher standard for
your own project. And "not my problem" is not a higher standard.

So please just fix it.

The easy and technically nice solution is to just say "we'll alias memcpy to
memmove - good software should never notice, and it helps bad software and a
known problem".

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