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Old 02-08-2008, 06:17 PM
Max Spevack
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

This email is about several topics at once:

(1) CodecBuddy was a Board-level decision that was made with the
understanding that after it had been in Fedora for a while, we would
evaluate the various pros and cons of how it was going and figure out if
it should stay in, be removed, or be modified.


(2) I hear anecdotally that the folks over at Fluendo would enjoy
having more open conversations with us about CodecBuddy, and how it
could be improved to make the Fedora experience of it better. These
conversations could/should be held in public.


(3) fedora-devel-list is having some reasonably heated discussions about
the precedents set by the CodecBuddy decisions, and how they do (or
don't) translate into things like open game engines packaged into Fedora
which have the ability to download levels or data that are closed
source, versus open game engines in Fedora that download levels or data
that are also open.


https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-devel-list/2008-February/msg00476.html
https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-devel-list/2008-February/msg00365.html

(4) One of the things that Board has recently said is that it would like
to start having a public meeting once a month to address some of the
issues that are getting play in various parts of our community.


I think we have an opportunity here to address all 4 of these topics at
once, in one or more IRC conversations.


Specific questions to be answered:

0. Invite the Fluendo folks to join.
1. What is good about Codec Buddy?
2. What improvements would we like to see in Codec Buddy and/or
codeina?
3. Are there any license, legal, or "open source morality" concerns
that need to be addressed?

4. What is the plan for Codec Buddy and Codeina going forward?

Separate, but related:

4. How do we address the questions and debates raised on the
fedora-devel-list threads above?


------

If folks would like to break these topics down into further detail via
email, that is great.


But as this has potential to be a thread of decent length, and as it is
about several topics that are all somewhat related, I think it's
important to try to keep in mind the specific problems/questions that we
are trying to address.


Just starting the conversation.... not really advocating any one
position or another right now....


--Max

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Old 02-08-2008, 06:19 PM
seth vidal
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

On Fri, 2008-02-08 at 14:17 -0500, Max Spevack wrote:
> This email is about several topics at once:
>
> (1) CodecBuddy was a Board-level decision that was made with the
> understanding that after it had been in Fedora for a while, we would
> evaluate the various pros and cons of how it was going and figure out if
> it should stay in, be removed, or be modified.
>
> (2) I hear anecdotally that the folks over at Fluendo would enjoy
> having more open conversations with us about CodecBuddy, and how it
> could be improved to make the Fedora experience of it better. These
> conversations could/should be held in public.
>
> (3) fedora-devel-list is having some reasonably heated discussions about
> the precedents set by the CodecBuddy decisions, and how they do (or
> don't) translate into things like open game engines packaged into Fedora
> which have the ability to download levels or data that are closed
> source, versus open game engines in Fedora that download levels or data
> that are also open.
>
> https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-devel-list/2008-February/msg00476.html
> https://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-devel-list/2008-February/msg00365.html
>
> (4) One of the things that Board has recently said is that it would like
> to start having a public meeting once a month to address some of the
> issues that are getting play in various parts of our community.
>
> I think we have an opportunity here to address all 4 of these topics at
> once, in one or more IRC conversations.
>
> Specific questions to be answered:
>
> 0. Invite the Fluendo folks to join.

This is a bad idea and it looks like collusion.


> 1. What is good about Codec Buddy?
It puts us into a precarious political and ethical situation. So I see
very little good from it at this point.

> 2. What improvements would we like to see in Codec Buddy and/or
> codeina?

I think we probably need to consider removing it.

> 3. Are there any license, legal, or "open source morality" concerns
> that need to be addressed?

Yes, All of the above. Not only that but it makes it harder for us to
take a stand on other issues. Like googleearth, for example.

-sv




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Old 02-08-2008, 06:28 PM
Greg DeKoenigsberg
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

On Fri, 8 Feb 2008, seth vidal wrote:


Specific questions to be answered:

0. Invite the Fluendo folks to join.


This is a bad idea and it looks like collusion.


Wait... what? Explain this, because I don't see how transparent
discussions about user experience equal "collusion".



It puts us into a precarious political and ethical situation. So I see
very little good from it at this point.


That's your opinion. There are others.


2. What improvements would we like to see in Codec Buddy and/or
codeina?


I think we probably need to consider removing it.


I think we need to keep it and make it more useful.


3. Are there any license, legal, or "open source morality" concerns
that need to be addressed?


Yes, All of the above. Not only that but it makes it harder for us to
take a stand on other issues. Like googleearth, for example.


I completely disagree with you.

--g

--
Greg DeKoenigsberg
Community Development Manager
Red Hat, Inc. :: 1-919-754-4255
"To whomsoever much hath been given...
...from him much shall be asked"

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Old 02-08-2008, 06:30 PM
seth vidal
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

On Fri, 2008-02-08 at 14:28 -0500, Greg DeKoenigsberg wrote:
> On Fri, 8 Feb 2008, seth vidal wrote:
>
> >> Specific questions to be answered:
> >>
> >> 0. Invite the Fluendo folks to join.
> >
> > This is a bad idea and it looks like collusion.
>
> Wait... what? Explain this, because I don't see how transparent
> discussions about user experience equal "collusion".

do we invite gnome developers to discussion about gnome in the distro?
Not generally.

> > It puts us into a precarious political and ethical situation. So I see
> > very little good from it at this point.
>
> That's your opinion. There are others.

Was there some confusion about whom I was speaking for? It's always my
opinion. Cmon, Greg, you know this.


-sv


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Old 02-08-2008, 07:01 PM
"Jon Stanley"
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

On Feb 8, 2008 2:30 PM, seth vidal <skvidal@fedoraproject.org> wrote:

> do we invite gnome developers to discussion about gnome in the distro?
> Not generally.

Nothing stops them from joining in the discussion, does it? I think
what we're saying to the Fluendo folks here is "hey, we're having a
discussion. Come join if you want to". Someone correct me if I'm
wrong.

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Old 02-08-2008, 07:04 PM
"Jeff Spaleta"
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

On Feb 8, 2008 10:30 AM, seth vidal <skvidal@fedoraproject.org> wrote:
> do we invite gnome developers to discussion about gnome in the distro?
> Not generally.

Do we have a significant problem with gnome as it is in the distro?
I've no problem making an extra effort at inviting people I think are
stakeholders to a discussion about addressing a problem. I don't think
the board should be restrained from doing it either.

If its an open forum, even if its structured, in terms of how people
que up to speak, inviting stakeholders to participate certainty isn't
collusion. I can't see how we have a legit open discussion about this
unless fluendo's pov is represented. It's not like we can ignore the
fact that the biggest problem with codeina as we implement it is the
ready access to the for-pay stuff fluendo offers. Not just in terms
of project policy, but also technically. Aren't the fluendo items
running afoul of default selinux settings because they are using
intel's compiler?


>
> > > It puts us into a precarious political and ethical situation. So I see
> > > very little good from it at this point.

I'll make a bolder statement... there is very little good associated
with any issue involving patent encumbered codecs or data formats
generally. I don't care what we do, we're not going to end up with a
good outcome. I'd like to actually have something like miro in
fedora, making use of codeina, so that we can actually have a
constructive forward looking conversation with miro and its sponsors
about going the next step and actually helping to produce good open
format editting tools to start bootstrapping our way out of this
frelling mess. I'm very unhappy on where miro stance on 'format wars'
They've taken a complete pass on the very issue. If we take a
complete pass as well, we'll give developers in this space a reason to
ignore us.

The whole thing blows big monkey chunks. The fact that you need this
crap to make flash usable is going to be an increasing more and more
painful, because in the bright kickass future of web 2.0 and online
desktop....we are screwed because flash is an integral part of this
stuff when it comes to video.

What if codeina was reworked such that by default we only made no-cost
items available by default after the education page?

What if codeina was reworked such that different service providers
could drop in support for their codecs? For example, so that
livna/rpmfusion could configure codeina when the release rpm was
installed?

If the Fluendo can task people to halp make those sorts of changes
isn't worth inviting them to a discussion?

-jef

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Old 02-08-2008, 07:06 PM
seth vidal
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

On Fri, 2008-02-08 at 15:01 -0500, Jon Stanley wrote:
> On Feb 8, 2008 2:30 PM, seth vidal <skvidal@fedoraproject.org> wrote:
>
> > do we invite gnome developers to discussion about gnome in the distro?
> > Not generally.
>
> Nothing stops them from joining in the discussion, does it? I think
> what we're saying to the Fluendo folks here is "hey, we're having a
> discussion. Come join if you want to". Someone correct me if I'm
> wrong.
>

A little clarity. I read the list wrong. I thought this was the board
list not advisory-board list. That's my bad. If we had privately asked
fluendo people to come to a private board meeting then I'd be much more
unhappy about it than a public meeting. My fault.

mea culpa.

-sv


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Old 02-08-2008, 07:07 PM
Toshio Kuratomi
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

Max Spevack wrote:


0. Invite the Fluendo folks to join.


As Seth said, we want to avoid the appearance of cutting a deal. This
would be somewhat alleviated if there were other legal alternatives that
could be incorporated.



1. What is good about Codec Buddy?


The things I like about codec buddy are:

1) it gives us a chance to educate users on why we don't ship these codecs.
2) It allows us to do something that points the user in the right
direction rather than simply failing and giving the impression that what
they've done is simply impossible to do with Fedora.


OTOH there are at least some users that don't read or understand our
reasons so this might be a salve to our conscience but no real help to
the end-user.



2. What improvements would we like to see in Codec Buddy and/or codeina?


My number one gripe is that there's no help for people who can get
codecs where they are not patented. As a minimal step, mentioning that
the patents don't exist everywhere and that free software
implementations do exist would make me feel better. However, that is
only going to be helpful to more advanced users who will read that and
know that they can turn to google for help. We need to come up with
questions for the lawyers that determine just how far we can push the
envelope. (Can we add the wording I mention? Can we point people to a
specific google search?)


3. Are there any license, legal, or "open source morality" concerns
that need to be addressed?

>
This issue is all about legality and morality :-/

I think Seth's point that being able to sanely argue against including
other downloaders that lie exclusively in the proprietary realm (Google
Earth) is important. I can see several criteria that could be used but
they aren't as simple to apply. (OTOH, our present stance is often
characterized as "Open source yes, proprietary no" when there are other
complicating aspects like legality and "makes maintaining the kernel
harder" involved as well.)


Some criteria that separates GoogleEarth from CodecBuddy:
1) Does an open source implementation exist but we are otherwise
prevented from including it?
2) Do we think we might have a chance to affect the decisions of the
license/copyright holders by keeping the software out of Fedora?
3) Could it be considered an "essential" portion of using a computer by
our users?
4) Is there any way to migrate our users to open source solutions
without using something like this?


Additional separation with autodownloader:
5) Code vs content


4. What is the plan for Codec Buddy and Codeina going forward?

Separate, but related:

4. How do we address the questions and debates raised on the
fedora-devel-list threads above?


Some of the fedora-devel-list thread are just plain misinformed of the
facts (legally including certain codecs). Other parts (the Google Earth
part) has resolved itself for now.


The last part (Game Autodownloader) is a poor fit for our goals but does
fit within most of the constraints and was reviewed by FESCo in the past
(although there seems to be some confusion over what individual FESCo
members thought they were agreeing to.) Personally, I think that the
autodownloader satisfies a number of the criteria that are outlined
above so I'm not against it but I'm not on the Board or FESCo at this point.


-Toshio

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Old 02-08-2008, 07:18 PM
Bill Nottingham
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

Jeff Spaleta (jspaleta@gmail.com) said:
> What if codeina was reworked such that different service providers
> could drop in support for their codecs? For example, so that
> livna/rpmfusion could configure codeina when the release rpm was
> installed?

*This* is the answer you're looking for, IMO.

> If the Fluendo can task people to halp make those sorts of changes
> isn't worth inviting them to a discussion?

They've been amenable to this, and it is on their feature list of
things to do. I do not know the status of this, but, having poked
codeina, I can think of two or three ways to accomplish it.

Bill

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Old 02-08-2008, 07:20 PM
Matthias Clasen
 
Default codec buddy, fluendo, etc.

On Fri, 2008-02-08 at 14:30 -0500, seth vidal wrote:
> On Fri, 2008-02-08 at 14:28 -0500, Greg DeKoenigsberg wrote:
> > On Fri, 8 Feb 2008, seth vidal wrote:
> >
> > >> Specific questions to be answered:
> > >>
> > >> 0. Invite the Fluendo folks to join.
> > >
> > > This is a bad idea and it looks like collusion.
> >
> > Wait... what? Explain this, because I don't see how transparent
> > discussions about user experience equal "collusion".
>
> do we invite gnome developers to discussion about gnome in the distro?
> Not generally.

I beg your pardon ? I would ask you to reconsider that position. You may
be a member of the board, but you are not the ruler who takes decisions
above the heads of the affected people.



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