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Hi Ian,

Ian Lynch wrote (03-06-11 15:47)
I just signed up as a committer on the Apache incubator this morning. Why?

Am I against LO and TDF - no, at heart I'm a copyleft person, however, there
are also practical realities to consider too sometimes. What is the worst
case? OOo code and trademark go with Apache and then little is done. LO and

Indeed, this is not purely hypothetical.
There has a really lot to be done before a possible OOo Apache project is more or less ready. Lots of Licence incompatible stuff has to be replaced, all infra and procedures etc has to be set up. People need to join and find their way. Will costs months. In the mean time LibreOffice, with already 8 month of code clean up, build improvements etc grows on. So there will be an pretty large gap for OOo-Apache to bridge. A pity also for LibreOffice, since that will make it much harder to profit from work done in OOo-Apache.

TDF can carry on business as usual. Best case scenario (depending on what
you view as good or bad :-) ) IBM and others put in engineering effort and
the OOo code base improves. TDF take and improve that code and release it
with a copyleft license. TDF engineers cooperate with OOo engineers to
ensure that as far as possible both sets of code remain manageable. Ok,
there is a threat that developers from the TDF camp migrate to the OOo camp.
But really there is not much choice than to take that risk. It will depend
on how many really want only to work on copyleft code.

The not possible scenario which we might have liked better is Oracle donate
everything to TDF - but they didn't and they won't so it's a case of "if my
aunt had balls she would be my uncle". She hasn't so she isn't.  :-)

One thing that is very clear is that if TDF had not been formed Oracle would
not transferred things to Apache, at least not this soon. So brilliant you
guys, you took a risk and it has at least mostly worked if not perfectly.
  Better now to look for the opportunities rather than the threats when
really there is not much that can be done about them. Pack out the
committers list on Apache and make sure you have a say in the governance of
OOo as well as TDF and LO.

It would be my strategy not to put too much energy in it from the start. As pointed out above, there is a massive gap to bridge. And much to do on LibreOffice. So not block it, but be careful with your precious time and energy. And - looking at IBM's past promised contributions to OOo and what came out of it - it is safe and reasonable to first see how they really make OOo-Apache work. If that turns out positive, I think it is OK and fair to put much more energy in it.


 - giving its foundation :: The Document Foundation -

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