Home     |     .Net Programming    |     cSharp Home    |     Sql Server Home    |     Javascript / Client Side Development     |     Ajax Programming

Ruby on Rails Development     |     Perl Programming     |     C Programming Language     |     C++ Programming     |     IT Jobs

Python Programming Language     |     Laptop Suggestions?    |     TCL Scripting     |     Fortran Programming     |     Scheme Programming Language


 
 
Cervo Technologies
The Right Source to Outsource

MS Dynamics CRM 3.0

Fortran Programming Language

Open64 Not Setting World on Fire: Why?


Some time back, I had heard that there was a free and open-source
FORTRAN compiler that had already implemented the Fortran 95 standard
(while f95, based on gcc, was still being worked on) and which
generated efficient code; it was called Open64.

Its only drawback was that you needed an Itanium-based system to use
it.

Initially, when I did a web search, it seemed that the name Open64 was
now out of date, and the compiler is now called ORC, the Open Research
Compiler.

And then I read that to install and use the program, you need to get
another FORTRAN compiler - specifically, Intel FORTRAN. Fortunately,
there's a free version strictly for non-commercial use of that
available.

The regular Intel FORTRAN requires that you have a copy of Microsoft's
Visual Studio now, though. That seems strange; you didn't need to buy
a copy of, say, Microsoft Visual C++ before you could use Borland C++
Builder; but then, Borland has left the compiler business. Has
Microsoft changed its licensing terms for the (required portions of
the) Windows SDK, or is it just that FORTRAN sells so few copies that
the one-time fee for licensing what would be needed would have added
more than the cost of a copy of Visual Studio to the product?

Then I read that there is a patent issue with Open64; apparently it is
a minor one, in that Open64 includes patented technology, and its
license is modified from the GPL in respect of the section about
patents. The code incorporating patents was contributed by the patent
owners, and the modification to the license appears to be merely a
clarification, but absent a formal assignment of patent rights and
things like that, some uses of Open64 source code are inhibited.

Also, while Intel has its ORC project, Open64 was originally based on
the Itanium version of SGI's Pro64 FORTRAN, which it released. They
did not release their MIPS version of the same compiler. And ORC,
although the main line of Open64 development, apparently is a code
fork.

I had done a Google search on the Open64 license only because I
wondered why there were proprietary compilers for the AMD64 (or EM64T)
architecture that were apparently successful products.

Yes, the GPL doesn't stop one from writing custom software for a
specific customer who is paying for the customization, but, in
general, if your customers can give away what you sell them, mass
sales of the same program seem odd. So I wondered if Open64 had been
licensed under a BSD-type license instead of a GPL-type license, but
it hadn't. Nor, apparently, was there a restriction on target types
(i.e. a restrictive license allowing the open source to be used only
for compiling for the Itanium, a paid license from SGI required to use
the code for other targets).

I can only conclude, then, that perhaps a back end going from WHIRL to
AMD64 can be packaged as a *separate program* from the Open64 compiler
itself, and can therefore be conventionally licensed without any
violation of the terms of the GPL. The alternative is that the few
people buying the AMD64 version of Open64 are voluntarily (and
unanimously!) not doing anything to undermine the source of their
support and enhancements: this has happened with an optical design
software package that I'm familiar with, but for an unusual set of
reasons that doesn't seem to apply here.

It may be that the reason the Open64 project hasn't "gone
further" (i.e. to the point where Open64 is a standard part of most
Linux distros) is simply that porting it to other architectures,
making it fully standalone, and so on and so forth, simply involve a
lot of work, and there has been lack of interest on the part of the
people capable of doing such work.

But the open source community in general seems vibrant with activity,
so I suspect that lack of interest in this specific project does need
a specific explanation. Is it just the patent issue, or the code fork,
or is the explanation something I haven't come across yet?

John Savard

"Quadibloc" <jsav@ecn.ab.ca> wrote in message

news:1179837654.946387.70020@r3g2000prh.googlegroups.com...

"It needs an Itanium to run on." Is that the answer? That the 64-bit world
is currently small, and mainly in an area where the compilers are available
'free' - bundled in with the hardware on Unix/Linux systems?

Quadibloc wrote:
> The regular Intel FORTRAN requires that you have a copy of Microsoft's
> Visual Studio now, though. That seems strange; you didn't need to buy
> a copy of, say, Microsoft Visual C++ before you could use Borland C++
> Builder; but then, Borland has left the compiler business. Has
> Microsoft changed its licensing terms for the (required portions of
> the) Windows SDK, or is it just that FORTRAN sells so few copies that
> the one-time fee for licensing what would be needed would have added
> more than the cost of a copy of Visual Studio to the product?

My understanding from previous conversations here is that it was a
change in licensing terms, yes.  Also, it's not so much the Windows SDK
parts, but the Visual Studio (i.e., the GUI and programmer tools) part.

- Brooks

--
The "bmoses-nospam" address is valid; no unmunging needed.

On May 24, 1:31 pm, Brooks Moses <bmoses-nos@cits1.stanford.edu>
wrote:

> Quadibloc wrote:
> > The regular Intel FORTRAN requires that you have a copy of Microsoft's
> > Visual Studio now, though. That seems strange; you didn't need to buy
> > a copy of, say, Microsoft Visual C++ before you could use Borland C++
> > Builder; but then, Borland has left the compiler business. Has
> > Microsoft changed its licensing terms for the (required portions of
> > the) Windows SDK, or is it just that FORTRAN sells so few copies that
> > the one-time fee for licensing what would be needed would have added
> > more than the cost of a copy of Visual Studio to the product?

> My understanding from previous conversations here is that it was a
> change in licensing terms, yes.  Also, it's not so much the Windows SDK
> parts, but the Visual Studio (i.e., the GUI and programmer tools) part.

> - Brooks

The developers of Intel Visual Fortran know that many of their actual
and potential customers dislike the dependence on Visual C++, and I
have heard from a trustworthy but non-Intel source that future
versions of Intel Visual Fortran may again be a stand-alone product,
as Compaq Visual Fortran was.
On May 22, 8:40 am, Quadibloc <jsav@ecn.ab.ca> wrote:

> And then I read that to install and use the program, you need to get
> another FORTRAN compiler - specifically, Intel FORTRAN. Fortunately,
> there's a free version strictly for non-commercial use of that
> available.

> The regular Intel FORTRAN requires that you have a copy of Microsoft's
> Visual Studio now, though. That seems strange; you didn't need to buy
> a copy of, say, Microsoft Visual C++ before you could use Borland C++
> Builder; but then, Borland has left the compiler business. Has
> Microsoft changed its licensing terms for the (required portions of
> the) Windows SDK, or is it just that FORTRAN sells so few copies that
> the one-time fee for licensing what would be needed would have added
> more than the cost of a copy of Visual Studio to the product?

Strictly speaking, none of the Intel Fortran compilers require a
separate purchase of Visual Studio. If all you want to do is build
from the command line, then on x64 the free Microsoft Platform SDK
will suffice as a prerequisite, and on x86, the free Visual C++ 2005
Express Edition will do.  The need to buy Visual Studio arises only if
you want to use the Visual Studio IDE with the Intel compiler.

On Linux, there is no separate purchase at all.

If I recall correctly, the Pathscale Fortran compiler is derived from
the Open64 project.

Steve

Steve Lionel wrote:
> If I recall correctly, the Pathscale Fortran compiler is derived from
> the Open64 project.

.
Yes, you're quite right. As I noted, there is a commercial AMD 64/
EM64T compiler derived from Open64, but no open source one, and I'm
wondering how this even could have happened.

Not that I think it surprising that people prefer getting paid for
doing work to doing it for free, but given the existing vibrancy of
the open source community, I was wondering if there was something odd
going on here.

John Savard

Quadibloc wrote:
> Steve Lionel wrote:
> > If I recall correctly, the Pathscale Fortran compiler is derived from
> > the Open64 project.
> .
> Yes, you're quite right. As I noted, there is a commercial AMD 64/
> EM64T compiler derived from Open64, but no open source one, and I'm
> wondering how this even could have happened.

.
I visited their web site again, looking more closely. The product they
sell is a suite of compilers, including Fortran 77 as well, apparently
also based on SGI technology. So I thought that perhaps they licensed
the compiler from SGI directly under other terms before SGI made it
available as open source.

But there is a note on the back of their brochure that some open
source components are included in the suite, and they are in full
compliance with the GPL on the distribution of those components. It
certainly *is* possible for a compiler to output its intermediate code
after doing its optimizations, and for the program that goes from this
to an x86-64 object to be a separate program.

Even offering a batch file that runs first the one program and then
the other, to make it "look" like a single program probably wouldn't
violate the GPL.

That explains what they're doing, then, I suppose. Besides MIPS,
Itanium, and x86-64, one web site says this compiler has been proven,
by academic researchers, to be capable of working with many platforms,
so I'm still somewhat puzzled. However, another site refers to the
code of this compiler as a "mess", so maybe writing a back end for it
is particularly challenging. And that *on top* of the patent issue may
indeed be enough reason for the apparently unusual lack of activity on
this item.

John Savard

On May 24, 7:00 pm, Quadibloc <jsav@ecn.ab.ca> wrote:

The SGI compiler is based on the CraySoft compiler.
Recall that SGI bought Cray Research a while ago.
Sun's f95 compiler is also based on the Cray compiler.
The Cray compiler is fairly typical of a program that
has evolved over the years.  It has been hosted on and
targeted to a variety of machines.  It could do with a
rewrite, but it is a fairly solid base from which to
start.

There are some programmers who think almost any code
written by anyone else is utter garbage.

Bob Corbett

On May 25, 4:00 am, Quadibloc <jsav@ecn.ab.ca> wrote:

> Quadibloc wrote:
> > Steve Lionel wrote:
> > > If I recall correctly, the Pathscale Fortran compiler is derived from
> > > the Open64 project.
> > .
> > Yes, you're quite right. As I noted, there is a commercial AMD 64/
> > EM64T compiler derived from Open64, but no open source one, and I'm
> > wondering how this even could have happened.

It didn't.  The commercial compiler *is* open source.

You assume a business model where  you can't sell a GPL-licensed
compiler and make money. Then you go on explaining how Pathscale may
work around this.  Sorry, but you're completely on the wrong
track ;-)

First: you *can* sell a GPL-licensed compiler and make money.  As far
as I know, the Pathscale compiler's source code is completely
available to you if you buy their product or if you ask someone else
who's bought it to share it with you, as required by the GPL.

The point is that you don't make money buy selling the compiler itself
in this business model.  You sell services, expertise, brain power,
etc., and make money from that.  Or you have proprietary add-ons like
libraries or tools for tuning.  I think Pathscale does all of the
above.

Another example is AdaCore.  Their main product is the Ada compiler
that is part of GCC (so it is GPL'ed).  They even maintain their Ada
compiler in the official FSF gcc source code repository.  When they
sell the compiler, they actually sell such excelent product support
that there is added value for their customers to pay for it.

I'm guessing the same is true for Pathscale, with all their high-
performance computing experience.

Gr.
Steven

Quadibloc wrote:
> Steve Lionel wrote:
>> If I recall correctly, the Pathscale Fortran compiler is derived from
>> the Open64 project.
> .
> Yes, you're quite right. As I noted, there is a commercial AMD 64/
> EM64T compiler derived from Open64, but no open source one, and I'm
> wondering how this even could have happened.

> Not that I think it surprising that people prefer getting paid for
> doing work to doing it for free, but given the existing vibrancy of
> the open source community, I was wondering if there was something odd
> going on here.

As noted later on, the team supporting this compiler are probably the
only people familiar enough with it to make it valuable (aside from
apparently somewhat related Sun material).  They state that the source
is open, in the sense that customers can acquire it and show it to others.
As there is a successful FSF project (gfortran) and another open source
project (g95) with many satisfied adherents, I have to say that we are
fortunate to have this wide variety of options, and we are not being
hurt by any perceived limitations on open-ness in this development.

I probably lean to that side a little.  But it is partly related to my
being exposed to some particular code written by others (at General
Dynamics, IBM, Harris, clean, concise, appropriately commented,
indented, following a written standard) that I think was very well
written and which I try to emulate.

> Bob Corbett

--

Gary Scott
mailto:garylscott@sbcglobal dot net

Fortran Library:  http://www.fortranlib.com

Support the Original G95 Project:  http://www.g95.org
-OR-
Support the GNU GFortran Project:  http://gcc.gnu.org/fortran/index.html

If you want to do the impossible, don't hire an expert because he knows
it can't be done.

-- Henry Ford

I've always been curious about this customer base.  My employer will not
allow hardly any use of open source or GPL software.  I haven't even
been able to convince them to let me use SQLite which purports to have
no licensing requirements whatsoever.

> I'm guessing the same is true for Pathscale, with all their high-
> performance computing experience.

> Gr.
> Steven

--

Gary Scott
mailto:garylscott@sbcglobal dot net

Fortran Library:  http://www.fortranlib.com

Support the Original G95 Project:  http://www.g95.org
-OR-
Support the GNU GFortran Project:  http://gcc.gnu.org/fortran/index.html

If you want to do the impossible, don't hire an expert because he knows
it can't be done.

-- Henry Ford

On May 25, 12:29 pm, Gary Scott <garylsc@sbcglobal.net> wrote:

<snip>

> > Another example is AdaCore.  Their main product is the Ada compiler
> > that is part of GCC (so it is GPL'ed).  They even maintain their Ada
> > compiler in the official FSF gcc source code repository.  When they
> > sell the compiler, they actually sell such excelent product support
> > that there is added value for their customers to pay for it.

> I've always been curious about this customer base.  My employer will not
> allow hardly any use of open source or GPL software.  I haven't even
> been able to convince them to let me use SQLite which purports to have
> no licensing requirements whatsoever.

I believe there are "no licensing requirements" for executables merely
because they were compiled with GPL'ed compilers such as gfortran or
g95. A program using GPL'ed code, for example code in the GNU
Scientific Library, WOULD be subject to the GPL. I hope your employer
understands these distinctions. If it does, I don't understand why it
would disallow using a GPL'ed compiler, at least for testing purposes.

Gary Scott <garylsc@sbcglobal.net> wrote:
> My employer will not
> allow hardly any use of open source or GPL software.  I haven't even
> been able to convince them to let me use SQLite which purports to have
> no licensing requirements whatsoever.

While it wanders off-topic and into flame-prone areas (I'll duck out if
that happens), I've long found the kind of attitude that your employer
apparenty expresses to make no sense. I do believe you; it is almost my
operating definition of a bureaucracy (and you know I used to work in a
big one) that the rules become more important than the reasons. Even
rules that were derived from "sensible" reasons end up getting applied
to places where the reasons don't actually make sense.

Rejecting particular license agreements I can understand. Globally
rejecting all open source I can't. In fact, odds are pretty much 100%
that you use all kinds of open source software even if you don't know
it. Some bits of open source software are so pervasive that it is hard
to operate in this world without using it.

For example, I'm pretty sure there are open source bits in Windows. For
another example, any time that you connect to a web site, you are
"using" the web server software on that site (much of which is open
source) in a very real way. That later example is far from facietious.
One keeps hearing talk of, for a major example, Microsoft thinking about
moving to a model where much of the software you use is on something
more comparable to a web server than in your local machine. (I don't
personally think it likely to go so much that way.)

Oh well. But in the end, there isn't much you are likely to be able to
do about the bureaucracy's rules, sensible or not.

Wait til they discover that you are breathing air on company time, and
you aren't (directly) paying anyone for it.  :-)

--
Richard Maine                    | Good judgement comes from experience;
email: last name at domain . net | experience comes from bad judgement.
domain: summertriangle           |  -- Mark Twain

nos@see.signature (Richard Maine) wrote:
> Gary Scott <garylsc@sbcglobal.net> wrote:

> > My employer will not
> > allow hardly any use of open source or GPL software.  I haven't even
> > been able to convince them to let me use SQLite which purports to have
> > no licensing requirements whatsoever.

> ... I've long found the kind of attitude that your employer
> apparently expresses to make no sense. I do believe you; it is almost my
> operating definition of a bureaucracy that the rules become more
> important than the reasons.

So true.  It was said quite well by a revered management guru:

"So much of what we call management consists in making it
difficult for people to work."

Peter Drucker (19092005)

--
Mike Prager, NOAA, Beaufort, NC
Address spam-trapped; remove color to reply.
* Opinions expressed are personal and not represented otherwise.
* Any use of tradenames does not constitute a NOAA endorsement.

As a former Manager of a team of 50, a whole lot of that is due to human
resources and lawyers.

> Peter Drucker (19092005)

--

Gary Scott
mailto:garylscott@sbcglobal dot net

Fortran Library:  http://www.fortranlib.com

Support the Original G95 Project:  http://www.g95.org
-OR-
Support the GNU GFortran Project:  http://gcc.gnu.org/fortran/index.html

If you want to do the impossible, don't hire an expert because he knows
it can't be done.

-- Henry Ford

"Richard Maine" <nos@see.signature> wrote in message

news:1hyny29.tz8pbr6myl0kN%nospam@see.signature...
...

> Wait til they discover that you are breathing air on company time, and
> you aren't (directly) paying anyone for it.  :-)

I've come across this analogy before.   It's difficult to think
of two things with fewer conceptual similarities than air
and software.  

--
J. Giles

"I conclude that there are two ways of constructing a software
design: One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously
no deficiencies and the other way is to make it so complicated
that there are no obvious deficiencies."   --  C. A. R. Hoare

James Giles <jamesgi@att.net> wrote:
> "Richard Maine" <nos@see.signature> wrote in message
> news:1hyny29.tz8pbr6myl0kN%nospam@see.signature...
> ...
> > Wait til they discover that you are breathing air on company time, and
> > you aren't (directly) paying anyone for it.  :-)

> I've come across this analogy before.   It's difficult to think
> of two things with fewer conceptual similarities than air
> and software.  

Industrial processes tend to make both stink. :-)

--
Richard Maine                    | Good judgement comes from experience;
email: last name at domain . net | experience comes from bad judgement.
domain: summertriangle           |  -- Mark Twain

"Richard Maine" <nos@see.signature> wrote in message

news:1hyokrc.183v513sppo52N%nospam@see.signature...

> James Giles <jamesgi@att.net> wrote:

>> "Richard Maine" <nos@see.signature> wrote in message
>> news:1hyny29.tz8pbr6myl0kN%nospam@see.signature...
>> ...
>> > Wait til they discover that you are breathing air on company time, and
>> > you aren't (directly) paying anyone for it.  :-)

>> I've come across this analogy before.   It's difficult to think
>> of two things with fewer conceptual similarities than air
>> and software.

> Industrial processes tend to make both stink. :-)

Most free software stinks big-time.  That's why you only
hear about a tiny minority of it.  But the stuff that gets
popular is usually at best mediocre.  That doesn't resemble
air much.  The whole "free software" movement doesn't
make much economic sense at all.  Its purpose seems to
be to provide money to distributors (who *do* charge)
that never reaches the people that really deserve it: the
authors of the code.  This encourages clever people to
go into some other line of work than writing software.

--
J. Giles

"I conclude that there are two ways of constructing a software
design: One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously
no deficiencies and the other way is to make it so complicated
that there are no obvious deficiencies."   --  C. A. R. Hoare

Tim Prince wrote:
> As there is a successful FSF project (gfortran) and another open source
> project (g95) with many satisfied adherents, I have to say that we are
> fortunate to have this wide variety of options, and we are not being
> hurt by any perceived limitations on open-ness in this development.

.
I am not trying to criticize the people at PathScale at all. I don't
know what their precise business model is. One thing I do *not* know
to be a fact, and I suspect may not be a fact, is for an x86-64
targeted version of Open64 covered fully by the GPL to in fact exist.

And even if it did exist, it stands to reason that in porting from the
Itanium to x86-64, they might have had to write their own libraries.

Having some other software choices out there, whether or not they're
open source, is a plus. Many people find the standardization of
Microsoft Windows, and the broad availability of certain types of
third-party software for it, so attractive that, strange to relate,
they use it instead of Linux or BSD.

So I'm not saying that the people at PathScale are hurting me.

What I am wondering, instead is: from what I've read, apparently the
Open64 compiler is a Fortran 95 compiler that works now, and it
produces better code than g95 is expected to. So why hasn't it been
the focus of more interest, with ports to all sorts of architectures
out there? It may be that, due to the patent issues, however
apparently minor, the talented people in the Open Source movement
working on Fortran compilers are all sticking with g95. Or is it
something I haven't turned up yet?

John Savard

I'm not trying to impugn the Open Source movement. I think it is very
valuable and has been of great benefit to humanity.

I do remember reading Richard Stallman telling us all that the GPL
doesn't prevent programmers from earning a living; it just prevents
them from doing so in ways that hurt people, by keeping computers and
useful applications apart.

This may be, but in general, the "free as in beer" aspect of software
under the GPL does mean that the business model of buying newsprint at
so much per pound, and selling it for considerably more per pound -
what one newspaper publisher self-deprecatingly and famously described
his trade as - is precluded. Some software products are useful in
themselves, and require little support; for others, support can indeed
be the producer of real value... and even perceived value, which is
sometimes an additional problem.

To those that, like Red Hat, can pull off making a living from Open
Source, I have all the best wishes. I don't know what Pathscale's
business model may be, but my concern isn't with them. Rather, it's
just with the fact that the Open64 source base seems to have excited
little interest from the Open Source community - despite the fact
that, from what I've heard, it's a Fortran 95 compiler that's here
now, and it is of excellent quality.

John Savard

James Giles wrote:
> The whole "free software" movement doesn't
> make much economic sense at all.  Its purpose seems to
> be to provide money to distributors (who *do* charge)
> that never reaches the people that really deserve it: the
> authors of the code.  This encourages clever people to
> go into some other line of work than writing software.

.
It's true that distributors do charge for their work. But because of
the GPL, no distributor of an open-source software product can obtain
a monopoly. So all they can manage to do is recover reasonable
packaging costs; I think that companies like Walnut Creek provide a
valuable service to people who don't have high-speed Internet
connections.

As we all know, too, there are some kinds of software that are
available in open source form, and other kinds of software that are
only available commercially, and which even need commercial operating
systems to run on. The open source movement only interferes with
people writing conventional commercial software where it competes
directly with them.

So it doesn't destroy the ability of clever people to write software
remuneratively, because nobody is forcing them to donate what they
write to open source.

The economic sense that the free software movement makes is this: if
you don't need to have a business model, if you don't need to recover
costs, then you don't need to use an expensive distribution channel.

Assume a world filled with people who own, say, 486s - or even Pentium
IIs - that they bought at a thrift shop for $30 or so. People who have
computers, but couldn't begin to afford one new.

If you don't need to charge $100 for a program, you don't need to put
it in a $10 box, so instead of free software costing $10 for
distribution, you are talking about an 0.3 cent download or something
like that. But if it's the same program, then the fact that so many
more copies of it are on so many more computers means that, if it's a
*useful* program, that enriches those who have it, then the *world* is
made richer thereby.

And then there's the "free as in freedom" part. This stuff can be
ported to other platforms. Port GCC to your latest whiz-bang computer,
and instant software suite - several operating system choices, many
compilers, many tools and utilities. You can add features, change how
it works.

John Savard

gFortran?  From what I understand it produces slightly faster code than
G95 at present.

> John Savard

--

Gary Scott
mailto:garylscott@sbcglobal dot net

Fortran Library:  http://www.fortranlib.com

Support the Original G95 Project:  http://www.g95.org
-OR-
Support the GNU GFortran Project:  http://gcc.gnu.org/fortran/index.html

If you want to do the impossible, don't hire an expert because he knows
it can't be done.

-- Henry Ford

"Quadibloc" <jsav@ecn.ab.ca> wrote in message

news:1180146659.950405.235750@o11g2000prd.googlegroups.com...

> James Giles wrote:
>> The whole "free software" movement doesn't
>> make much economic sense at all.  Its purpose seems to
>> be to provide money to distributors (who *do* charge)
>> that never reaches the people that really deserve it: the
>> authors of the code.  This encourages clever people to
>> go into some other line of work than writing software.
> .
> It's true that distributors do charge for their work. But because of
> the GPL, no distributor of an open-source software product can obtain
> a monopoly. So all they can manage to do is recover reasonable
> packaging costs; [...]

$40.00 for a CD is "reasonable packaging costs"?  And that's
cheap in today's market.  And the point remains that none of
the money goes to the developers: who most deserve it.

> So it doesn't destroy the ability of clever people to write software
> remuneratively, because nobody is forcing them to donate what they
> write to open source.

Not directly (unless your software contains a component that is
already GPLed - in which case they claim to own your whole
program).  But I very often get "why don't you write that up
with a GPL so we can all use it?"  I don't because it consumes
a lot of my time and effort and I can't afford that with out a
possible market.  But, what they make clear is that they have
no interest in my software if it's not "free".  Again, their definition
of "free" is that the *author* gets no remuneration, not that it's
not sold.  The whole free software idea has all but eliminated the
small software company.  There's little in the market between
"free" on the one hand and *large* commercial producers on the
other.  If you don't want to work for a salary somewhere you
don't write software for a living. :-(

Note: I also notice that a large amount of the "free" software
is written and maintained by people working for government
agencies  - not just in the US - and maybe even some large
companies.  So, even there the authors are on salary.  Where's
the small independent producer?  I can't find any evidence
they exist.

--
J. Giles

"I conclude that there are two ways of constructing a software
design: One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously
no deficiencies and the other way is to make it so complicated
that there are no obvious deficiencies."   --  C. A. R. Hoare

<stevenb.@gmail.com> wrote in message

news:1180070170.427850.208970@o5g2000hsb.googlegroups.com...
...

> The point is that you don't make money buy selling the compiler itself
> in this business model.  You sell services, expertise, brain power,
> etc., and make money from that.  Or you have proprietary add-ons like
> libraries or tools for tuning.  I think Pathscale does all of the
> above.

So your motivation is to avoid writing complete, reliable
programs that need no support.  You are better off writing
software that needs add-ons, bugfixes, and optimizations.
The fact that such software is inherently less valuable to the
end users doesn't occur to you?

Frankly I'd rather write good software once than make a career
out of maintaining mediocre software.  Especially since I'm
getting too old to make a career out of anything!

--
J. Giles

"I conclude that there are two ways of constructing a software
design: One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously
no deficiencies and the other way is to make it so complicated
that there are no obvious deficiencies."   --  C. A. R. Hoare

Add to del.icio.us | Digg this | Stumble it | Powered by Megasolutions Inc