freebsd should be rewritten based on microkernel architecture

Aryeh Friedman aryeh.friedman at
Sat Apr 18 15:27:07 UTC 2020

On Sat, Apr 18, 2020 at 10:59 AM Ralf Mardorf via freebsd-questions <
freebsd-questions at> wrote:

> On Sat, 18 Apr 2020 10:12:16 -0400, Aryeh Friedman wrote:
> >And no GPL is not a binding contract because it fails the
> >"consideration" test of what constitutes a contract (i.e. no money
> >traded hands and thus no contract was formed... the user gave no
> >consideration).   See ("The
> >basic elements required for the agreement to be a legally enforceable
> >contract are: mutual assent, expressed by a valid offer and
> >acceptance; adequate consideration; capacity; and legality" )
> "Is the GPL enforceable in law ?
> At least in Germany, based on our own experience: yes. In recent years,
> there have also been successful court cases in the United States. We
> see no evidence to believe it is not enforceable globally." -
> .
> Btw. you are the only one mentioning morality. I mentioned a business
> model.
> If you sell electronic products you could follow different business
> models. One model could be to rasp away labelling on integrated
> circuits and other components, to make it harder for business rivals to
> build similar products or harder for pirates to copy your
> product. Another model could be to not rasp away anything and even to
> include circuit diagrams to the product content, so your customers are
> able to maintain the gear, which could be a way to make more money, due
> to the customer friendliness, than you would earn by fear of business
> rivals and pirates.

Very different then software since to build the hardware you still need to
buy the materials (with real money not karma) and thus unless you want to
end up in the poor house there is a certain minimal amount you or anyone
else making the hardware must charge.  Where is with software except for
the (trivial) amount time it takes to make a copy of it there is zero per
unit cost to making it (assuming it is downloadable).    That assumes your
not the original author, if you are the original author then you have the
opportunity cost of the original R&D that needs to be covered somehow.
Either it is covered by some organization (or rich friend) who is willing
to donate the needed resources or out of the wallet of the programmer(s).
In the case of small developers it is almost the second of the two.   That
is where morals comes in due to it being a unsustainable business model and
asking/telling anyone it is sustainable is an dishonest and unethical (as
well being immoral).  See link below where the FreeBSD foundation says just
that "A less publicized and unintended use of the GPL is that it is very
favorable to large companies that want to undercut software companies. In
other words, the GPL is well suited for use as a marketing weapon,
potentially reducing overall economic benefit and contributing to
monopolistic behavior.... The GPL can present a real problem for those
wishing to commercialize and profit from software. For example, the GPL
adds to the difficulty a graduate student will have in directly forming a
company to commercialize his research results, or the difficulty a student
will have in joining a company on the assumption that a promising research
project will be commercialized." [second and third paragraphs of section 9].

Also if you want to know more about the interplay between business/markets
and morality you might want to read my dad's book on the matter "Morals and
Markets" (Daniel Friedman, Palgrave, 2008, ISBN: 0230600972 ... not to be
confused with Milton Friedman's "Markets and Morals").  Much of what he
says about the economics of open source are based on my experience and
those of his CS grad assistants in his experimental micro-econ work.
Summary GPL like licenses are economically not viable in the long run but
BSD like ones are.

> For some software the GPL'ed business model is a very good way to gain
> customer loyalty, hence I provided the Ardour DAW as an example. It's
> probably not the best business model for everyone. That one business
> model doesn't fit to everyone, doesn't justify assertions, such as your

Like I said I am not the only one saying this see the FreeBSD Foundation's
article below.

> On Fri, 17 Apr 2020 20:50:09 -0400, Aryeh Friedman wrote:
> >And here goes the *ABSOLUTE* reason why no developer who ever hopes to
> >make any money at all from their work should *EVER* use GPL.
> It's utter nonsense! Without doubts MIT, BSD and other licenses are
> better for some projects, while for other projects GPL could grant a
> bonus.

Not according to the FreeBSD foundation who recommends against GPL in
almost all cases.
(see sections 9 and 10)

Aryeh M. Friedman, Lead Developer,

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