"...Armchair software analysts were in action almost
immediately, as is their wont, demanding to know what the point of
Medusa was in the first place. There are already tools present on
most Linux machines that handle the sort of thing Medusa appears to
have been designed for on the most superficial level, such as
locate, which the more cynical among us might point out already
does a very good job of confusing newbies who are still awake at
two or three in the morning when it goes to work thrashing the hard
drive to update its database of file locations."
"There's a certain lack of charitability present in complaints
and interrogations like this, because they almost always imply that
the engineers who are building tools like Medusa are still wet
around the ears and out to reinvent wheels. The conspiracy-minded
usually also take a few seconds to imply there's some sort of
covert attempt at a proprietary lock-in present in the whole scheme
by introducing a heretofore unknown piece of software into the mix.
That's reflective of some effective scare-mongering on the part of
many misguided enthusiasts who assume that if a thing's function
isn't readily apparent to them, it's probably closed and
proprietary. If you're in doubt that this goes on, consider the
tired old meme that RPM is a "proprietary format," which always
disregards two interesting facts: RPM itself is GPL'd, and RPM's
themselves can be cracked open fairly easily with cpio. If Debian's
willing to include rpm and librpm in its distro (which it does),
I'm inclined to think that settles most of the argument. That
doesn't ever seem to stop people, though, whenever Red Hat makes
any other mistake and a new pile-on is underway."
"Chalk it up, I suppose, to an ongoing bit of schizophrenia in
the Linux world where the issue of how to treat people out to make
money with Linux is concerned. Most of us are at least reconciled
to the idea. A few still struggle with it."
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