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http://trombonechamp.wordpress.com

The whole advantage to free software is that you can take it apart and look at it, right? That is what most free software advocates would have you believe. So what would happen if the GNU Project released a Perfect Decompiler, a decompiler that could perfectly decode any binary into source code understandable by humans? Would this help or hurt the Free Software Movement?

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trombonechamp's picture
Created by trombonechamp 4 years 13 weeks ago
Category: Philosophy   Tags:
TDTwister's picture

TDTwister

4 years 13 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago

2

Yes but ...

First of all your idea defeat the purpose of free software since viewing and changing the source code is one of the freedoms but not (In my opinion) the most important one. Although this is nearly impossible in most of the cases you can be forbidden to so by the license. The problem with proprietary software is not that they can not be decompile is that they do not respect their users freedom. So the problem with proprietary software has nothing to do with the source code.

can.axis's picture

can.axis

4 years 13 weeks 4 days 19 hours ago

0

The Free Software Definition

  • The freedom to run the program, for any purpose (freedom 0).
  • The freedom to study how the program works, and change it to make it do what you wish (freedom 1). Access to the source code is a precondition for this.
  • The freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor (freedom 2).
  • The freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions to others (freedom 3). By doing this you can give the whole community a chance to benefit from your changes. Access to the source code is a precondition for this.
spanky's picture

spanky

4 years 13 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago

0

Confusion abounds

@trombone

The GNU project is a social project, not a technical one. Read.

can.axis's picture

can.axis

4 years 13 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago

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gnu and the fsf

IMO, people make confusion between FSF and GNU. To quote RMS, the free software movement is a political cause, not a technical one, but GNU is not the Free Software Foundation. GNU is certainly a social project in that the goal is to eliminate nonfree software, and thus a social problem, but hacking free software alternatives is a technical one...

For more information, see: gnu, gnome, and the fsf...

trombonechamp's picture

trombonechamp

4 years 13 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago

0

@'s

@TDTwister: Did you read the article? tl;dr - A perfect decompiler would hurt the free software movement

@spanky: See http://www.gnu.org/

TDTwister's picture

TDTwister

4 years 13 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago

0

Yes I have.....

Its a very nice article apart from reducing the free software movement into a technical and a legal problem. Quoting: "This just goes to show the importance of finding the source cause of a problem. It would seem (and many assume) that the root dilemma of the Free Software Movement is the inability to access the source code of all software. In reality, though, the problem is about the legal inability to deal with such source code. Free software advocates advocate using free software for reasons involving read access to the source code, but rarely touch on the most basic concepts of true freedom."
And no it is not the legal implications that are the problem is the social implications that legal issues oppose. Social issues have little to do with the source code. It has to do with the ability to use and share software in freedom.