this is probably a little touchy to ask...

Polytropon freebsd at
Sat Sep 11 06:00:14 UTC 2010

Preface: Sorry for messing up the quotes and all, this message
         got a bit untidy so that even *I* am unsure who I am
         currently replying to. :-)

On Fri, 10 Sep 2010 15:24:31 +0000, four.harrisons at wrote:
> On 10. sep. 2010, at 16:29, merlyn at (Randal L. Schwartz) wrote:
> > Except for video playback, which HTML5 fixes as well.  And yes, until
> > then, we're stuck with Flash.

Sadly not. While HTML5 standardizes the embedding of video content,
there still seems to be a problem with codec to use. All this
idiotic crap of patenting, licensing, and all the fee-loaded
lawyer-stuff that has NO need to exist in a technical discussion
brought "Flash" where it is today: "Flash" is abused as a replacement
of HTML, mostly by "professional program managers" and script kiddies.

HTML5 browsers would need to be able to play video content out
of the box, WITHOUT the need for installing additional codecs
"that are illegal to use in my country" - you know what I mean.

It's like requiring a plugin at OS kernel level to display text
in bold face, or showing a PNG image in a web page!

> > I repeat... Java had its day.  Time to move on.
> You are forgetting - or conveniently ignoring - that many still
> NEED Java support in their browsers - and not of their own choice.

I think the initial suggestion to move on was directed exactly
at the reasons you mentioned in the next sentence:

> Banks, insurances, digital signature services etc. Still frequently
> use Java as carrier for their services. Often this cannot be changed
> easily as such organizations have long turn-around times and make
> investments in the long term. 

Good software can always be changed easily. :-)

> Java is still very much alive, and until html5 can validate and run
> signed code it'll stay that way even on the client. And that is just
> one of the reasons/scenarios. 

It's also very famous in education. For example, basic programming 
courses (not BASIC programming courses!) often use Java to teach
the basics of programming. This produces bad programmers. :-)

> I'm not using FreeBSD on the desktop for just this kind o reasons.

I'm using FreeBSD *exclusively* on the desktop since version 4.0.
I never had issues with Java - it always worked. I admit that it
wasn't very easy in the first years due to Sun's licensing politics
(again, politics are the enemy of every educated technical consi-
deration), but it worked. Both in Opera (my main browser) and
Firefox, among many "testing bed" browsers I had to use in the

Since "Flash" works on FreeBSD, I also tried this out. After one
week, I removed it. Reason: No need for it.

You are right that Java is still needed in some places on the
web, but it's far more easy to deal with Java problems than with
"Flash" problems, I think.

> So either one takes the time to implement what people _need_ in
> addition to what you would prefer them to need, or the desktop
> can as well be ditched and focus moved to improving FreeBSD for
> servers, where it already excels. 

First of all, please see the big difference between "what people
need" and "what people want", and who those people are. I'm sure
I don't have to elaborate on this. :-)

Second, FreeBSD is an excellent MULTI-purpose operating system
that can be used on terminals, workstations, servers, and on all
kinds of mixed forms. I would be sad to lose only one of those

For a more desktop-centric FreeBSD that has all the stuff "what
people need", refer to PC-BSD.

> Some sites make accessing them difficult without Flash, but I
> consider that their problem and move on.

Yes, same here.

> FreeBSD isn't just good for servers.

As I said.

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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