: Yes shareware such as GNU/Linux is growing like a weed while
Great. Let em at it.
: It shouldn't have happened, after all, as any run-of-the-mill Objectivist will tell you: "those that make something own it" (meaning of course those that own the product of the workers who make something). Why should they GIVE IT AWAY??!! WHERE'S THE PROFIT??!!
Whilst I wouldnt speak for an 'objectivist' I think you have it wrong. If its theirs they can choose to give it away. Thats the key, they have the choice. Doesnt have to generate a dollar profit, if you make a chair and give it to your buddy I say good on yer. If you make a chair and someone else takes it without your consent for his purposes then I think you would agree that its 'not good'
McSpotlight: The GNU GPL (General Public License) is slightly more revolutionary than just giving a chair away, though, Gee; if someone uses GPL'd code (your blueprint for the chair), then their code also has to be GPL'd; in other words, it infects every product depending on GPL'd code with enforced openness and sharing; deeply subversive to the corporate world! Basically speaking, the more people that use the GPL, the more clout the GPL has; since nearly every Linux box in existence uses some GPL'd code (like GNU Emacs, or GCC - the GNU C Compiler, or the Gimp - a program like Photoshop (but better!)). Basically, the GPL puts the proprietory nature of source code under direct attack.