[Clipart] Understanding what "Open" means

Mike Traum mtraum at yahoo.com
Tue Apr 19 11:08:53 PDT 2005

I'm sorry you got so angry about this, but the issue seems moot at
this point anyway in light of someone's (can't remember who) comments
about most packages moving away from hard links due other issues
regarding them.

If, instead of just blasting away with your anger, you would have
tested (as I did), you would have found that I what I meant by 'not
supporting hard links' is that when the file is untar'ed, a copy of
it is created instead of a hard link (at least on NTFS and FAT32, and
I assume this is the usual practice - it wouldn't make sense
otherwise). So, the platform wouldn't be 'written off', it would just
end up with copies of the files instead of hard links.

I am just trying to help contribute to the process here, and I don't
appreciate all of the anger.


--- Nathan Eady <eady at galion.lib.oh.us> wrote:

> Mike Traum wrote:
> > Andrew,
> > Regarding hard links, I thought it was the same as a copy (oddly
> > enough - I've been working on unix/linux systems for 10+ years).
> > After doing a bit of research, it appears that it's not (it's an
> > inode reference) on ext2 and ext3 filesystems, and probably
> others.
> > 
> > And, tar does support this. Zip does not, but that's to be
> expected
> > and proabably acceptable. So, I agree, this would be the best
> > solution by far. You'd have a download that isn't bloated becuase
> of
> > duplicate files. You'd have an extraction that isn't bloated on
> > filesystems that support it. The only issue is extraction
> filesystems
> > doesn't support it (Windows XP / NTFS doesn't, I believe), but I
> > think we can all live with that.
> Let me get this straight:  you think everyone can live with just
> writing off all systems that don't support hard links, even though
> yesterday you didn't know what a hard link is, have I got that
> about right?  Maybe you should stop and think about the
> implications
> of things that you are advocating.  I'm trying to be patient, but
> you
> are frankly not making large amounts of sense to my way of
> thinking.
> As far as I am concerned, it is nothing like reasonable to suggest
> that we write off platforms that don't support hard links; it is
> *absolutely* not reasonable to assert that everyone would be okay
> with that; I am certain we would *NOT* all be okay with that, and
> if you were thinking about the implications you should *know* that
> some of us would not be okay with that.  It would be one thing if
> you were suggesting (as has been discussed on this list in the
> past)
> offering the packages in two forms, one with hard links and one
> with copies -- we set that idea aside for practical reasons, but
> suggesting it would be understandable, if you had not read that
> discussion.
> However, if I understand what you are saying, you want us to just
> tell people using any filesystem that doesn't support hard links
> that
> our clipart is not for them.  I disagree not just with this
> specific
> suggestion but with the entire underlying attitude that it belies.
> We are not building some kind of exclusivist club with a
> gnosticism-inspired inner circle of people who exchange content
> among themselves and board up the windows to keep the outside world
> from getting to any of our precious secret wisdom.
> Please try to understand where we are coming from when we call this
> the "Open Clip Art Library".  I'm not sure how well you understand
> the "Library" part, but I am certain you do not understand the
> "Open" part, or have chosen to ignore it, not just in this instance
> but also on several other recent occasions.  "Open" means, among
> other things, that the collection needs to be useable for the
> broadest possible audience.  (It also means that contributions will
> be accepted from the broadest possible author base.)  We go out of
> our way -- sometimes significantly out of our way -- to avoid
> making life hard (or our clipart difficult to access) for people
> on various platforms with sundry limitations.  We don't generate
> filenames with spaces in them, or non-ASCII characters, or longer
> than (IIRC) 31 characters, because various platforms and
> filesystems
> would have problems with them then.  We supply both ZIP archives
> and tarballs of each release.  We have plans to localize for
> various
> languages.  We provide a filtering tool for people who cannot use
> a collection that might include images in one objectionable
> category
> or another, so that they can produce a subset collection that is
> acceptable to them.  We require all submissions to be released into
> the public domain.  We have tested the website in web browsers as
> old as IE3 and Navigator 4.08.  And so on and so forth.  You might
> (nay, should) notice a pattern.  All of this fits together into a
> mindset that is focused on providing a general-purpose repository
> of clipart that anyone can use for any purpose.  Please try to
> understand this mindset.  It is key to the way we do things.
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