Doesn't Not Compute

My log of experiences with GNU/Linux and computers in general.

Resurrection is Hard Work

Even when it’s just software, and not living beings! 😆

For the past month, I’ve been working on a long list of Ice Window Manager themes. Organizing, labeling, judging free-or-not-free (as in freedom, not beer). Determining whether they should be reorganized, and which need files renamed to fit the original authors’ plans.

This doesn’t seem like a hard job, does it? It isn’t. Just very, very tedious. Especially considering I examined and organized those themes by “Look” — the theme file option that decides how some things are drawn — by hand. All 184 of them. And then went back and input information on each one into a spreadsheet. 😯

For each one, I viewed the default.theme file, as well as any documentation provided about the theme (few had any) for the author name, email address, description, and various flags on whether each theme had a paticular option. For example, the gtk-look theme “Helix” does not have its own image for the menu button on the taskbar, no specified license :mad:, no trademarked images to the best of my non-lawyer research, is properly organized other than lacking a README file, does not have custom “ledclock” images for a fancy-looking clock, has one “desktop background” image (in PNG format, so you’ll have to compile in imlib support to use it), and no custom or recommended font, icons, or mouse cursors.

Note the “no specified license” part. If a theme does not have a specified license, it basically has no license. I haven’t perused *all* of the ancient IceWM mailiing lists yet, but I’ve found no explanation of what license the themes must be under. Under my (again, non-lawyer) understanding of United States law, that means the copyright/license is limited to the original author. Including the legal right to redistribute. *sigh*

Considering that some of the provided email addresses are now defunct, and other themes don’t even have an email address provided, there is no way to contact these authors for permission to redistribute them. Since they were provided to the old IceWM project, which is under the LGPLv2 license, I *could* risk assuming that the themes were intended to be under the same license as well, but this seems possibly unethical. There are very few that I have risked marking as redistributable, and only because they are based on the example themes that are provided in the source code repository — meaning that, as derivative works, they too have to be under the same license. See the benefit of specifying your work’s copyright license? 😀

I’m more-or-less sure about what themes are currently able to be redistributed at this point, and I plan to create a repository (not on Sourceforge) to share them as soon as possible. In the meantime, you can enjoy the spreadsheet — in both a single, multi-sheet ODS file or in a gzipped-compressed tar file of multiple, single-sheet CSV (comma-separated values) files, however you prefer.

Well, the files really are an ODS file and a .tar.gz file, but I had to rename them for WordPress to let me host them. I don’t like Javascript-heavy websites like Rapidshare, Megaupload, the perpetually broke Omploader, et cetera. Particularly because of the closed, nonfree nature of the system, but they’re just annoying regardless. 😐

Rename these as instructed in the parentheticals.

“Why didn’t you just provide REAL PDFs?” Because the spreadsheet looks AWFUL as a printout and in PDF form. 😉 Much too wide.


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