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Re: [Ghm-discuss] [gnu-prog-discuss] Planning the next GNU Hackers Meeti

From: Simon Josefsson
Subject: Re: [Ghm-discuss] [gnu-prog-discuss] Planning the next GNU Hackers Meeting
Date: Tue, 20 Dec 2011 12:40:56 +0100

mån 2011-12-19 klockan 15:46 -0500 skrev Richard Stallman:
> Most users are moving from PCs to phones and tablets.  GNU needs to
> make this move, too, somehow.  The issue is to find a feasible path.
> It is a hard problem because of several difficulties.
> * The new hardware is a lot more secret than PC hardware.
> * Much of the hardware is tivoized.
> * We need work on software for phone calls.
> * The GUIs may need to be very different.
> * Lots of important features are patented and developers
> are actually being sued.

Another fundamental difficulty is that more and more of the "software"
running on mobile phones are thin clients against network based services
under horrible terms of conditions.  Few of the ~50 apps I have on my
work Android phone are usable without a network connection and a remote
server that is outside of my control.  GNU doesn't offer any solution or
sets a path forward to this problem today, as far as I have seen.  This
is a huge challenge.

As Werner said, the hardware cycles are just too fast to keep up with at
the moment, so I feel doing something about the network services may be
more fruitful.  That work is more likely to be re-usable in ten years.
I may be biased though, since that is the kind of work I find more
interesting as well.


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