Bitkeeper goes Bye-bye

A lot of GNU/Linux users were upset when Linus Torvalds “decided to use(Linus Tries Out BitKeeper)”:http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=02/02/06/1341250&tid=99 the commercial product Bitkeeper for his Kernel Development Needs. Including at least one famous individual.
bq.The use of Bitkeeper for the Linux sources has a grave effect on the free software community, because anyone who wants to closely track patches to Linux can only do it by installing that non-free program. There must be dozens or even hundreds of kernel hackers who have done this. Most of them are gradually convincing themselves that it is ok to use non-free software, in order to avoid a sense of cognitive dissonance about the presence of Bitkeeper on their machines. What can be done about this? – “Richard Stallman(Linux, GNU, and freedom)”:http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/linux-gnu-freedom.html The creator of the software responded.
bq.The point is that more and more people are coming to see the BitKeeper licensing model for what it is: a well thought out compromise which gives as much value as possible to all interested parties. Is it free? Not the way Richard wants, not even close. Is the product better than any free alternative? Yes. Could we have built the product if it were GPLed? No. Is it helping Linus be more productive? Yes. – “Larry McVoy(Interview: Larry McVoy)”:http://kerneltrap.org/node/222 Of course, Bitkeeper had some interesting ideas on cutting down on both “competition(BitKeeper EULA Forbids Working On Competition)”:http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=02/10/06/0518220&tid=17&tid=106 and “complaining(BitMover Releases Open Source BitKeeper Client)”:http://developers.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/03/18/0255216&tid=156&tid=162&tid=106. Now we learn that BitKeeper is “dropping support(o More BitKeeper Linux)”:http://developers.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/04/06/140202 for the free client that started the whole controversy in the first place. Hopefully converting to something else won’t be a big problem. And hopefully the productivity gained will surpass the time lost in completing the conversion.

Posted by Michael K Pate

Michael K. Pate tends to spend a great deal time of time around computers. He has been a Librarian since 1997. Michael was born in Avon Park, Florida in 1966. Except for a couple of brief periods in his life (once in Tampa and once in Winter Haven/Haines City), he has been a life-long resident. Originally, he planned on a career as a Computer Programmer and therefore graduate from Webber College with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems in 1988. However, unhappy with career opportunities at the time, he soon returned to school and received a BS in Social Science Education from the University of South Florida. He began his career in education at Avon Elementary and later Avon Park Middle working as a Computer Lab Coordinator. While technological challenges were interesting, he found himself more and more interested in becoming a Media Specialist. He began work on his MLS in 1995. However, a summer internship at the Sebring Public Library in 1996 soon made him reconsider just what his career should be. Upon graduation in 1997, he secured a position as a Media Specialist at Eastside Elementary in Haines City. Eventually, the position he was looking for opened up and he returned to SPL as Reference Librarian in 1999. In 2003, he became Assistant Director of the Highlands County Library System, serving in that role until the position was eliminated during a late round of budget cuts in 2010. Since then, he has been the Computer Support Specialist for the Heartland Library Cooperative. In 2011, he began serving on the Board of Directors of the Tampa Bay Library Consortium.