[R] The hidden costs of GPL software? - None

(Ted Harding) Ted.Harding at nessie.mcc.ac.uk
Wed Nov 24 10:21:36 CET 2004

On 24-Nov-04 John wrote:
> Off hand, the costs of GPL'd software are not hidden at all.
> R for instance demands that a would be user sit down and
> learn the language. This in turn pushes a user into learning
> more about statistics than the simple overview that Stat 1
> presents a student.

I'd see this as less a cost than a benefit!

> In contrast, any program that simplifies use also tends to
> encourage a simplified understanding.


> So, I believe it can be legitimately argued that the real
> hidden costs lurk in "easy to use" software, especially
> commeercial software with GUI interfaces.

Well put; though it's not obvious whom these costs fall on.
The people who actually use the "easy to use" software, or
the organisations that employ them, can all too often get
away with sloppy or invalid analysis. It may often be the
consumer of their results or of products based on them who
ultimately loses.

Best wishes to all,

E-Mail: (Ted Harding) <Ted.Harding at nessie.mcc.ac.uk>
Fax-to-email: +44 (0)870 094 0861  [NB: New number!]
Date: 24-Nov-04                                       Time: 09:21:35
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