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Programming Open Source

LLVM and Clang 3.4 Are Out 118

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the features-are-nice dept.
An anonymous reader writes that the LLVM compiler framework and Clang C++ compiler hit 3.4 "With C++14 draft fully implemented in Clang and libc++. Read more in LLVM and Clang release notes." Also of note: "This is expected to be the last release of LLVM which compiles using a C++98 toolchain. We expect to start using some C++11 features in LLVM and other sub-projects starting after this release. That said, we are committed to supporting a reasonable set of modern C++ toolchains as the host compiler on all of the platforms. This will at least include Visual Studio 2012 on Windows, and Clang 3.1 or GCC 4.7.x on Mac and Linux. The final set of compilers (and the C++11 features they support) is not set in stone, but we wanted users of LLVM to have a heads up that the next release will involve a substantial change in the host toolchain requirements."
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LLVM and Clang 3.4 Are Out

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  • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot@@@hackish...org> on Tuesday January 07, 2014 @01:36PM (#45888987)

    From a technical perspective I like LLVM, but I don't get the appeal of your 2nd point. Why should I work for free on a project in order to enable companies to make proprietary extensions to it that they won't release back to the community? The GPL makes me more willing to contribute to projects, because it ensures that everyone plays fair, so to speak: I'm adding my contributions, and if you find the results valuable and extend my work, you should do likewise.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 07, 2014 @01:42PM (#45889065)

    The BSD folks tend to argue that things work out in the end anyway. Useful contributions find their way back, and when they don't then at least someone got some good code out of it. There are few exceptions, in general you can't force anyone to contribute back. Very few projects are that good. The only thing you achieve is that your code is used in less places.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 07, 2014 @01:53PM (#45889225)

    Why should I work for free on a project in order to enable companies to make proprietary extensions to it that they won't release back to the community?

    You shouldn't, but you should also not see it as a deterrent. Those companies will never release anything back to the community regardless of license.
    Yes, while unlikely they might be able to make some more profit thanks to whatever you contribute but that is irrelevant since it doesn't actually harm you or the project.
    On the other hand the way they think is that their source code is the most important thing they have and they will never make it public. Those companies will rather try to roll their own compiler than contribute to an open source project. By using a more permissive license you do not get more contributors in the form of programmers but I highly doubt that you get less either. What you do get is more contributors in the form of debugging and bug reporting.

  • by Above (100351) on Tuesday January 07, 2014 @03:05PM (#45890235)

    There actually is a good reason.

    Let's say a company invents a proprietary bit of silicon, and wants a compiler for it. They may likely chose one that requires them not to spill the beans on their proprietary hardware in the process. So yes, it's true, you don't get the benefit of their "special sauce", but you were never going to get it anyway, so there is no loss.

    However, that same company now has a lot of people using the code. It takes time and money to track separate changes, so if they find a bug in code not specific to their proprietary stuff they are likely to fix it, and submit it upstream so they don't have to maintain it going forward. That code will benefit you.

    So basically, the people who find the GPL odious will never use gcc, and will find some alternative. Given those people have fully closed options (license Intel's compiler, or Microsoft's), or use something like LLVM. With the LLVM model they can submit fixes to their non-secret sauce upstream, as well as get others to help fix problems they find in the non-secret sauce part.

    TL;DL, if you choose gcc or LLVM you're never getting their secret sauce, but if you choose LLVM you get more help on the non-secret sauce parts.

    That is the real essence of the "BSD License" philosophy. You may or may not agree.

  • by HeckRuler (1369601) on Tuesday January 07, 2014 @03:57PM (#45890871)

    Ah yes, all those people running BSD... All those people.
    Which, hey, if you include Apples OSX, is a hell of a lot of people. So yes, let us bask in all that effort that Apple has done for the open source community.

    Very few [open/free] projects are that good.

    Well with that sort of QUANTITY, you can't expect them all to be stellar.

    The only thing you achieve is that your code is used in less places.

    But those are places that you can actually use rather than the proprietary walled garden constrictive license which make for the sort of thing where you don't actually own the things you own. It also makes for a platform which is dead in the water and has no legs. And it's usually expensive.

    I don't care if a few businessmen shy away from the code I throw out there under an free license. They most certainly wouldn't have helped me.

  • by jo_ham (604554) <joham999&gmail,com> on Tuesday January 07, 2014 @04:22PM (#45891153)

    A free software license does not limit what you can do with the code. For all intents and purposes Apple could have released their code under GPLv3+ and they would have been fine. I totally understand why they choose not to do that, but it was Apples choice to do it; they could have done different if they really, really, really wanted to.

    And then shipped it together as a bundle with Xcode? The GPLv3 specifically prevents them doing that, and it was deliberately written that way. The GPLv3 absolutely limits what you can do with that code. It is a very restrictively and carefully written licence in certain very key areas (not that this is necessarily a bad thing if you want such a thing - and there are valid reasons for it existing).

    So, no Apple couldn't have done that "if they really wanted to", without making the whole of Xcode open source.

    That's not really "choice" and "freedom" is it? That's what this comes down to - the GPL protects the freedom of the *code* whereas the BSD licence protects the freedom of the *users and/or developers* of that code.

  • by Bill_the_Engineer (772575) on Tuesday January 07, 2014 @04:38PM (#45891315)
    The problem with your argument being that Apple sponsors the clang and llvm project. I'm sure they put in more money than you, and we still enjoy the use of the BSD code.

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