Search Engine on

Toshio Kuratomi a.badger at
Sat Jul 24 21:07:21 UTC 2010

On Sat, Jul 24, 2010 at 01:14:38PM -0400, Paul Frields wrote:
> On Sat, Jul 24, 2010 at 12:26 AM, Matt Domsch <matt at> wrote:
> > On Fri, Jul 23, 2010 at 02:20:42PM -0500, Mike McGrath wrote:
> >> On Wed, 21 Jul 2010, Mike McGrath wrote:
> >>
> >> > It's been pointed out to me that is in violation
> >> > of Infrastructure's free software policy:
> >> >
> >> >
> >> >
> >> > In particular the "Proprietary Dependence" clause.  Now, start.fp.o has
> >> > existed long before the policy was put in place and a grandfather
> >> > exception does exist.... but I thought I'd mention it.  This could be an
> >> > opportunity to completely re-think the home page.
> >> > I know that upon its design there was some major things in the works but
> >> > AFAIK most if not all of them fell through and that search engine link was
> >> > all that was left.
> >> >
> >> > Thoughts, comments?
> >> >
> >>
> >> Got this from jds2001 (Jon Stanley - Board Member, cardnals fan) who
> >> requested that I forward it on:
> >
> > [snip]
> >> In short, I don’t think that we can remove Google search without also
> >> removing all other external dependencies from the infrastructure, which is
> >> neither desirable nor practical.
> >
> > We can remove Google search from start.fp.o today if we want to, there
> > is nothing stopping us from doing so.  It doesn't have to be
> > all-or-nothing, and we run plenty of equipment (say, network switches,
> > load balancers, servers, storage arrays) that are not Free in any
> > sense of the word.  Our stance needs to be more than "if practical,
> > use open source", but it need not be "we only use open source
> > hardware, software, and services we can verify as being open source,
> > non-malware, ...".  I have no problem grandfathering in the services
> > we have, and, as time, needs, and available effort permit, substitute
> > them for open source services we run ourselves. But I'm not willing to
> > shut down all of Fedora Infrastructure because we can't get the board
> > layouts and firmware source for our servers and switches, and can't
> > power the data centers on solar.  There's ideals and goals, and there
> > is cutting off our nose to spite our face.
> You've hit on something that concerns me, Matt. I worry that we're
> looking for ways to eliminate some third party services without any
> plan, manpower, or commitment to replacing them. I'm not saying we
> don't want to do so; we want to build and run only free software on
> our infrastructure. IOW, if we're building or running something on
> Fedora infrastructure (think FAS, or pkgdb), the web application code
> shouldn't be linked, in the compile/module sense, to some proprietary
> code to work.
> Whacking things without any sign that we're going to provide, build,
> or run in-house a replacement, though, seems premature even if we'd
> like to get to that point eventually. I'm not thinking so much of the
> start page itself here, but the specific example of the docs.fp.o site
> with its search box that calls Google with sitesearch=docs.fp.o set. I
> would say that function on the site isn't even essential, it's just
> helpful for people who are going to use the site. Perhaps one of the
> points of discussion needed is what constitutes "essential" function
> and what's informational or an add-on utility.
> In any case, the language in the policy is fairly unclear about the
> context for "linking" (web applications dynamically linking? or
> providing a URL?). It needs to be revisited and better explained, so
> I'd recommend that review become a Board action item -- not that it
> has to be done in private meetings, but that the discussions be
> tracked and resolved, and any changes documented in the policy, by a
> specific date.
No.  This is an Infrastructure issue.

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