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From Alex Harui <>
Subject Re: [DISCUSS] Communicating intent around non-release, downstream integration binary artifacts
Date Tue, 23 Jun 2015 23:58:49 GMT

On 6/23/15, 4:16 PM, " on behalf of Roman Shaposhnik"
< on behalf of> wrote:

>On Tue, Jun 23, 2015 at 6:22 AM, Alex Harui <> wrote:
>> Yep, that’s the “tax” of Apache.  IMO, its main reason for existing is
>> make users of ASF projects feel comfortable incorporating our source
>> their projects because we’ve done our due diligence on the IP/legal
>> on every line of source.  Even for “alpha” quality code, when we say
>> “here, go try this, it may be buggy” we are also saying “we feel pretty
>> good it is safe to eventually be part of your production code and won’t
>> have effects on how you license and use this code”.  Yes, folks
>> put alpha code into production, but you know how reality is: some
>> sees your POC and suddenly you have a team adding more code on top of
>I think I just got it! Let me continue the tax analogy: at this point ASF
>a flat one-size-fits-all tax of putting something, anything out there. We
>optimize for the most demanding case: the case of guaranteeing clean
>IP AND reasonably stable functionality.
>What I'm suggesting here is that perhaps we should think about having
>a progressive tax. A tax that starts small for things that have very
>potential to cause ASF trouble and culminate with the most demanding
>one. The one we currently have today.
>Does this make sense?

Well, IMO, a progressive tax doesn’t make sense.  Since you like my first
analogy, let me try another one: peanuts.

Many people have severe peanut allergies.  Even trace amounts, like
chocolate made in a factory where peanuts are processed can be a problem.
If you advertise that your restaurant is completely safe for these folks,
you cannot afford to experiment on the general public with new ingredient
suppliers.  Because if you screw up, not only have you harmed someone,
your reputation is screwed up for a long time, if not forever.  There is
no progressive way of introducing peanuts into your menu.

Roughly speaking, GPL and other category X licenses are peanuts.  So until
your product team has done its due diligence that there are no peanuts in
the ingredients from your suppliers, don’t serve that food to anyone who
walks in the door, and don’t advertise telling everybody to come in and
try it.

Now you can invite folks to help you prove that the food tastes good and
doesn’t have peanuts in it.  You can even go to conferences and invite
these folks.  They subscribe to your dev list and taste the nightly
builds.  But they are signing up to be a taste tester.  They are not the
general public.

This is how I think about these things.  I wish there was a better word
than “release” because “release” has other meanings in other places which
I think is the root cause of this sort of confusion on this topic.


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