On Wed, Jul 14, 2021 at 1:40 PM Theodore Y. Ts'o <tytso@mit.edu> wrote:
On Wed, Jul 14, 2021 at 11:01:58AM -0400, Clem Cole wrote:
> By formal definition, the tarball and the rest of UNIX from Research is and
> always has been, '*Open Source*' in the sources were available.  *But they
> were licensed*.  This was fairly typical of much early software BTW.  The
> binary nature only came about with the minicomputers.
Please don't go here (again).   Yes, it has been trademarked, but the official trademarked term is different from reality --> just like the guy that got a copyright for email and claims to have invented it.  People were 'open sourcing' software before you and I were born.  They just did not have a name for it - thank you.

The real 'father' of Open Source as we think of it today was Prof Don Pederson and his Industrial Liaison Office (ILO) of the EE Dept of UCB in the late 1960s -- long before rms, et al.   As 'dop' used to say, I give everything away because then I go in the back door, not the front door like a salesman.   MIT/CMU/Stanford et al we often licensing their work.  In many ways, CMU and Stanford were two of the worst.  The ILO gave away all its products.  We would not have the current electronics industry without the work dop and his students produced.  As I have also pointed in other email tapes like the original, '1BSD' was managed and distributed by the ILO because dop had set of the infrastructure 10-15 years earlier to send out mag tapes and other IP to 'interested parties.'

Yes, computer networks changed the distribution and access medium, but please refrain from trying to rewrite history.   The GNU project and FOSS movement that was created took the idea and advanced it, making use of better ways of communicating the ideas, removing the academic clubiness as Larry suggested.  Larry is right, if you were a peer organization or maybe a patron of same, getting source was possible.

As rms noted, at some point the sources to things go harder and harder to get access.   ITS, WAITS, and even CTSS were all written at a time when you go from IBM and DEC their sources - typically on  7 or 9 track mag-tape and were usually available on microfiche.   You also got the circuit schematics too.  Local modifications to both HW and SW were normal.

But starting with the Minis this began to change and it started to get harder and harder.  SW started being a revenue source for those companies -- DEC in particular, so they started to be hold back the sources.  The rest is history...    Folks like rms objected because the behavior they were used to had changed and he and people like him, could do nothing about it.  So he created the Gnu project to compete with those commercial products.   

But just like have been getting 'email' since the late 1960s/early 1970s on my computers, it was not named.  Someone body claimed the name later.   But the function was old.  The same is for sharing software written and given away, now we have a name and a way to describe the behavior.