...or: Why has no consumer distro been providing updated packages for Ghostscript for more than a year?
It's been more than a year that artofcode LLC and its lead developer, Raph Levien have revealed that bleeding egde Ghostscript will no longer be AFPL licensed, but will switch its Subversion-held development tree to the GPLv2 license.
This in turn paved the way for Mike Sweet, developer of CUPS and maintainer for ESP Ghostscript to announce: "everyone will be able to use the latest Ghostscript and contribute fixes back to the core", implying his willingness to overcome the fork (which at a far time back in the past was a necessity in order to make the CUPS ball rolling at all).
Then these things happened:
And now it's done.
GPL Ghostscript 8.60 (merged with ESP Ghostscript) is released (since 2 days ago).
Strangely, all these cool developments didn't spark any amount of noticeable interest, not even in a year. Not much mentioning in the relevant online press. No increased activity on the part of distro packagers to provide updates and/or backports. And not much demand from the general Linux user demography either....
Let's try and fix this now. Let's wake up the sleepie ones. Let's shout it from the rooftops (maybe provides some impetus to cause some more packager activities?):
Ghostscript 8.60 is released! It's the bleeding edge! It's no longer AFPL, it's GPL!! It's cool!!! It has new features!!!! It is merged with ESP Ghostscript (which now is end-of-life-d)! It has much better support for working with PDFs (processing and creating them)! And for spot colors! And for color profiles! And for shadings! IT IS A MUST-HAVE! IT IS A MUST-HAVE! IT IS A MUST-HAVE...
P.S.: and while you're at it, please make the new Ghostscript builds use its newly gained modularity, will you? No, not any longer a need for one single monolithic Ghostscript binary. Yes, drivers modular! Yes, and support for an outsourced, separate Ghostscript library that can be used by "-sDEVICE=x11". No -- no more different builds for "--with-x11" and for "--without-x11" support... So, when will you be ready?