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Re: KDE question...

Eric Cifreo wrote:

> <!-- Is Qt totay free?  Is there any differance from GPL'd code?
> Previously, Troll released two versions: a commercial development
> package for commercial apps, and the "personal" edition.  It comes
> with source, so you can hack it, but not redistribute it.
> The new Qt free is under something they've dubbed the QPL, and appears
> to be GPL compliant.

Not quite, it's not GPL (or LGPL), but it qualifies as an open-source
license according to Eric Raymond (esr), who's widely recognized as the
open-source authority.

The main difference between QPL and LGPL is that commercial apps can't link
to Qt under QPL.  They need to link to Qt professional, which is a
completely different license (identical product though).

> This makes for an interesting situation: how will
> Redhat handle the cries for KDE inclusion now?

An interesting question.  Looking at the RedHat Qt-problems press release,
the QPL-LGPL difference I cited above was one reason RedHat gave for not
including KDE.  To quote the press release:

     In contrast to the LGPL, the Qt license requires you to pay
     substantial license fees if you develop and sell commercial
     applications that dynamically link against Qt. Specifically, if
     you link your software with Qt, your software must be distributed
     under the GPL or LGPL, or it must allow free modification and
     distribution of the source. This effectively says "your software
     must be Open Source even though ours is not", and curiously means
     that if you distributed your software under the Qt license you
     would not be able to link with Qt!

(http://www.redhat.com/redhat/qtlicense.html)  This hasn't changed, so
RedHat probably won't either.  The last sentence raises an interesting
contradiction with one part of the Open Source definition:

     3. Derived Works

     The license must allow modifications and derived works, and must
     allow them to be distributed under the same terms as the license
     of the original software.

(http://www.opensource.org/osd.html)  A couple of critics have raised this
an an open-source problem with even the new QPL.  But then, if the new QPL
is open-source enough for esr, it's open source enough for me!

Conclusions: there remain substantial differences between QPL and LGPL, one
of which was cited as a reason RedHat wouldn't distribute KDE, so until the
license changes further, we probably won't see KDE in RedHat.

However, the Mandrake distribution is essentially RedHat with KDE, and 5.2
will be out very soon (though I don't know whether it exists for alpha).

> Too much bandwidth
> has already died due to Gnome vs. KDE talk, so no more flame wars.

No flames, just data.

Personal note: I use GNOME because it lets me use Enlightenment, and have
never used KDE, so I'm not entirely unbiased.


-Adam `Cold Fusion' Powell, IV http://www.ctcms.nist.gov/~powell/ ____
USDoC, National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST)  |\ ||<  |
Center for Theoretical and Computational Materials Science  | \||_> |

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