Double dare ya, Fedora! And your art sucks!

Rudolf Kastl che666 at
Tue Mar 28 11:46:08 UTC 2006

2006/3/28, Andy Green <andy at>:
> Eric S. Raymond wrote:
> > First, a relatively minor issue that is nevertheless quite annoying.
> > It's the Fedora distribution art, the images in Anaconda and the
> > Fedora-customized graphics in the admin tools and elsewhere.  It has
> > never been much better than mediocre, and in FC5 it hits a new low
> Quality of art is simply subjective, looks okay to me.
> > But the art problem pales compared to the issue that everyone has been
> > ducking, which is Fedora's support for DVDs and proprietary audio and
> > video and web-streaming formats and Java applets. That is to say, its
> ...
> > It's 2006, people.  The Web is fifteen years old.  Even non-techies
> > have had a decade to form expectations about what constitutes a base
> Supporting Flash seems to soak up most of the problem that can be
> solved, eg, youtube, Google Video, and if you have 32-bit firefox you
> can have it.  Seems the only answer for Quicktime and such is the
> corporate mantrap that is Mplayer, it makes no sense for Redhat to
> invite attack on their cash by playing that game.  There is no limit to
> the number of dangerous proprietary formats that one could address by
> that logic.

flash isnt a standard... how about creating a new better technology
and obsolete it? flash requires mp3 for sound playback... so even if a
gpl implementation exists it wont be going into extras... id just
forget about flash and look "forward". personally i wont run a 32 bit
browser on my 64 bit system just to get the closed source garbage
working. only real use case for flash would be watching some funny
movies... as far as regular webpages go... i am not a flash fan at
all, but thats just me...

> > Let's start with the basics.  For a consumer OS to be unable to play
> > MP3s and handle podcasts is just plain not acceptable, not in the
> > world after iTunes.  Red Hat/Fedora's duck-and-cover on this would be
> > understandable if the Fraunhofer patents blocked decoders, but
> > Fraunhofer itself has only dunned for royalties on *encoders* -- thus
> > Red Hat/Fedora has ceded to Fraunhofer rights it has never claimed.
> I don't know about it, it would be lovely if Fedora had MP3 out of the
> box.  However again the caution is commendable, because having mp3 out
> of the box for a while followed by RHAT getting nuked for many millions
> of damages and unable to continue with its very widespread contributions
> to many projects would not be a good trade.
> > AVI.  Quicktime.  ASF.  MPEG.  DVD playback.  Flash.  Java. These are
> Well Java seems to be coming along via gcc.  Flash exists in a non-free
> form.  AVI is just a container format, the problem is more the varied
> codecs that can be used on the data inside it.  IIRC you can buy a
> licensed Linux DVD decoder app somewhere.

theres the webgcjplugin for browsers aswell... someone fix the
security stuff up and we got a solution.

> > *not optional* in 2006, any more than the ability to read Microsoft
> > Word files in a word processor is optional; if we try to treat them
> > that way, consumers will blow Linux off.  Evangelizing for SVG and O

Consumers mostly just dont know that they are using worse legacy
formats like mp3 when they have superior formats such as ogg
available... i think thats a plain educational problem.

> > 3. We can buy the rights to the technologies we want as a straight
> > commercial transaction from the patent-holder.

you wanna feed the patent dinosaurs? sure... we pay for patents...
companys are then with the money getting more patents.... we pay for
more patents... -> not a solution especially not in my eyes when its
about legacy formats.

> Let me imagine the negative case.  RHAT and the community are drained
> and pummelled by a limitless number of patent attacks they are forced to
> defend once they get into that game of either entering the grey zone or
> getting their wallet out.  Even JPEG is a danger area.  Unless the
> strategy includes turning off the patent attack tap somehow it seems an
> unlikely "way forward".
> > really would be time for those of us who care about the future of Linux to
> > find a commercial partner with more ambition and more guts.

I am rather hoping that more education will make the "problems" vanish.

> Why not do that anyway if they are so easily found.
> -Andy
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