[nycbug-talk] YouTube Channel for BSD Technical Talks

Miles Nordin carton at Ivy.NET
Sat Dec 6 15:36:00 EST 2008

>>>>> "spl" == Siobhan P Lynch <trish at bsdunix.net> writes:

   spl> spout the virtues of Ubuntu *linux* every chance you get,

the virtues are the parts we can learn from, not the failures.

I think the *'s above may explain why my tone is troubling you.  It
seems like I've shocked you by complimenting Linux on a BSD list, when
usually all we do is slam Linux to make ourselves feel better.  If
we've gotten to the point where any Linux compliment is shocking, then
we're a bunch of blinking yes-men like those fools around Bush, and we
need to be shocked out of it.

I've done plenty of Linux-slamming, too, believe me!  The intent is

 * If you want Linux, you know where to get it.  We're an alternative
   we think _some_ people will find superior.  We won't pander to
   everyone, nor to play catch-up like Linux does to Windows.

 * Let's not copy XXX from Linux just because they're bigger.  Our way
   has worked well for us.

I lost both.  I lost the first when I heard myself saying ``I want (a)
stable system with (b) support for lots of notC programming languages
like Haskell, Erlang, and Java and (c) good networking stack with
stuff like policy routing, wireless, and firewalls that don't panic
the kernel, ability to forward a jumbo frame without dumping core.''

The on second point BSD eventually buckled on almost everything the
Linux refugees wanted to copy, one *BSD at a time.  like PAM, an
impatient binary-linking culture including an excessively-modularized
kernel instead of embedded-friendly streamlined build tools and big
static-linked images, userspace filesystems, X in the package
collection so it can't be cross-built, parts of the core system
depending on Perl, 'ps' and 'netstat' tools using abstract high-level
ABI's rather than groveling kmem so they're no longer provably
non-invasive and using the same codepath on coredumps as running
systems, u.s.w.

If you'll look through NetBSD lists ~eight years ago, my Linux
criticism was mostly restatements of: ``Linux has no culture and no
tradition except being anti-Windows.  They write things in the
quickest, sloppiest way possible, and their only standard of code
quality is, works==good.  Because of this, they're not building an
enduring, teachable culture through their code base.  BSD was a clean
teaching system from the beginning and still is now, while Linux is
just shoveling shit into a cauldron and bubbling off the water, never
caring about the smell or the process so long as they can build
something like a brick from it.''

so, now when I find BSD people being what I view as grossly negligent
compared to the minimum standard of culture-conscious behavior in the
Linux world, who-cares-works-for-me, the situation's reversed, and I'm
like, ``wtf, guys?''

I don't see truth in my 1999 cheerleading any more, _particularly_
among the BSD users like us---we use BSD like Windows admins use
Windows or like Mac zealots claim that Apple is perfect, because we
know it and we're too old or lazy to learn other things.  In 1999 the
other BSD users I remember came to find a Way, but when I bring up
something like a Way here, I get flamed ``I have a good job and am a
mom.  I just want to talk about technical things only.''  Culture has
been the most important part of BSD since its beginnings:


rivalry with Linux has been at the center of BSD culture, since Linux
was worth running, which was VERY early---Linux 0.99.14 in ~1993
worked almost as well as 386BSD and had heaps more drivers and
prebuilt packages.  also this cool serifed VGA font with a bubble in
the > and < glyphs that sealed the deal for me.

BSD developers maybe do still have culture inside their heads, but I
think it's been eviscerated now that there are no new supplicants
begging to commit things to whom they can say ``this is an egregious
hack.  go rewrite it and make it better in ____ way.''  They still
have some amazing developers and some brilliant SoC students, but what
they don't have is enough interest to sustain their original
culture---they have to accept ~everything as Linux did willingly from
the start.  The culture I originally admired has been, in the
retrospect you see in mycroft's post, a failure.

Also, as discussed the last time you blew up at me, I think their
favoring the BSD license (1) is NIH-ism, (2) is defended by sound
bites and platitudes more than good arguments, (3) has been
devastating to BSD over the last two decades.  The staggering amount
of money the GPL mobilized and funneled into Linux _has_ to be the
reason the work of that mongol hoarde puts BSD stability to shame, yet
prominent BSD developers like Theo in the Reyk-HAL bickering (which
was finally untangled by lawyers funded by FSF donations <slap>), take
absurd nonsensically-vindictive positions like ``we only have a
license for liability protection.  we want our code to be used as
widely as possible by anyone no matter how little they give back,
except not in Linux, they can't use it.''  And Ray was saying a bunch
of developers are throwing heaps of time into rewriting things we
already have just to strip the GPL off!  When there aren't enough
developers to fix staggeringly fundamental problems, I think this is

but yah, 2009!  NetBSD 5.0 is supposed to fix two of mycroft's 2006
crises: threads work, and there's a journaling filesystem.  still no
flash-friendly filesystem AFAIK, but by now they've probably resigned
themselves to letting openwrt take over the embedded space.

   spl> I am a happy human being. I have a family, and I'm a Mom, and
   spl> I make a good living. I'm on the PTA,

I don't want to talk about that kind of stuff here any more.  I mean,
if you want to unload, whatever, but don't get started again with this
ad-hominem shit like you did last time, ``did you fail at something?
Fail really bad?...  the world owes you something...  because youu've
been beaten by it every time?...  Grow up Miles,...  Either way, you
come off as a child throwing a temper tantrum,...  you need

Why are you dumping personal stuff about your family and job in
response to a post I've made about software development models?  Most
of us have families and jobs.  If my post about software culture made
you want to pull pictures of your daughter out of your wallet like a
prisoner about to be executed to point and say, ``see? I, too, can
love!  even though I am a mouth-breathing Mac OS user who pisses on
the freedom others have fought to give me, and claims to represent a
movement while collaborating in the pissing-away of a quarter century
of tradition'' then, maybe it was a really good post.

If now you're suddenly indignant because you feel like your, omg,
family has been insulted somehow, then spare us: DON'T BRING THEM UP!
Nor mine.  And don't say ``sorry, I'm usually quiet, but [insulting
bating attacking things about my private life],'' either.  This is SO
basic, and we've had this discussion before.

Honestly I've not seen it happen before, ever, on the main BSD project
lists.  I don't think it even happens on lkml.

   spl> venom. Even this email proves it.

*I'm* spouting venom?  hmmm....  well,

   spl> You would be much happier if you worried about yourself and
   spl> what *you* posted

same to you!
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