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Date: 2007-11-02 (13:03)
From: Jon Harrop <jon@f...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Google trends
On Thursday 01 November 2007 18:12, Richard Jones wrote:
> So if I confine myself to a subset of the language and library, and
> hope that all the third-party libraries I might use also confine
> themselves, then I can compile on F#.  And what do I gain in this
> situation?

You gain the ability to take your existing OCaml code, make minor changes and 
sell it to earn money. If you so wish, you can also leverage the skills you 
have learned with OCaml in writing commercial software for the Windows 
platform. These are enormous practical benefits for many OCaml programmers.

Selling general OCaml code is very difficult. There is no reasonable DLL form 
for OCaml. Consequently, after four years we are only now considering selling 
Smoke under source code license.

> > > Microsoft could have contributed valuable changes back to OCaml,
> >
> > As Skaller has said, we cannot contribute to the OCaml code
> > base. Even if you fork the codebase you are still bound by its
> > license and you are not allowed to redistribute your own modified
> > OCaml distribution.
> Nonsense.  You have to distribute as original code + patches,

That is not "contributing valuable changes back to OCaml" in any meaningful 

> but there are automated tools that make this simple (eg. RPM...

Do you really expect Microsoft to adopt the Red Hat Package Manager?

> and debs both support precisely this mode of source distribution and make it
> completely transparent to the developer...

Transparency to developers is not the issue.

Surely you would not expect Microsoft to contribute to gcc or Mono rather than 
starting their own projects?

Dr Jon D Harrop, Flying Frog Consultancy Ltd.