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[Caml-list] Re: User library license
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Date: 2003-02-26 (14:19)
From: Sven Luther <luther@d...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Re: User library license
On Wed, Feb 26, 2003 at 04:30:10AM +0100, Anonymous via the Cypherpunks Tonga Remailer wrote:
> Many successful languages use a very liberal license with
> basically BSD or X11 terms.  Python, Oz, SML/NJ, etc.

Here we go again, ...

BTW, what have you to hide to post anonymously ? Who are you really and
who are you working for ?

> "RedHat makes a living from GPL code" is misleading.  A big
> reason for Linux success is Apache, which is BSD licensed,
> plus the BSD-licensed languages running on Linux.

Sure, sure, ...

> The big sticking point with me is that it's much easier to
> convince my management to use software with a clean license. 
> If I want to make a product with an embedded XYZ engine, the
> company lawyers come down on me like a ton of bricks when
> they see xGPL license terms for XYZ.
> Then everybody loses.  Me, the business, and XYZ Project. 
> Believe me, I've had the GPL/BSD debate before, and am not
> interested in repeating it.  My statement is simply that the
> GPL philosophy completely misreads the business situation. 
> It sets up an artificial antagonism instead of finding
> common ground.

Well, if they want non GPLed code i wrote, they are free to reach an
agreement with me for a copy of it under whatever they choose. I Believe
this already happens for members of the ocaml consortium which have
access to the ocaml code under separate licencing schemes.

If they don't like it, then they don't use the code, or stay with the
xGPL. And any other objection only hides hidden agendas or something
such. There is no way they can force me, or someone else, to licence the
code under a licence i don't like, and trying to force the issue like
you do is ethically wrong, and more akin to racket or intimidation.

> There are Bad Guys like Microsoft, but also Good Guys like
> Sun and IBM, which have both given away millions of lines of
> code.  Business is at least as likely to be your friend as
> your enemy.  There is enough overlap of mutual interest that
> you will get some code back from proprietary work.  If you
> xGPL it, then you destroy many possibilities for
> collaboration.

Why, there is really no reason i could not dual licence it.

> Business wants the code to be better, but does not want to
> be forced into revealing family jewels.  So it contributes
> what it can.  However in the face of xGPL licensing,
> business says basically "forget it" to its software team. 
> xGPL pushes them to the wall and demands their code; no
> business can submit to that.  Some GPL folks say, "fine do
> it yourself," and that's exactly what business ends up
> doing.  It's all horrific duplication and waste.  Over-
> worked software teams duplicating open source work, and
> understaffed open source projects crying out for volunteers.

Well, sure, the GPL does, but not the LGPL, and that is the whole point
of it. Also the main point of the xGPL is to protect the customer, to
make sure that they will be able to run the code even if the customer
doesn't see a reason for upgrading to the new glibc for example or
whatever. Ever tried using the closed source flash player on a sid
debian system for example ?

> Sometimes business uses BSD code without sharing back --
> true enough -- but that's not always bad!  The whole
> Windows TCP/IP stack, and the new Mac OS X, are perfect
> examples.  We have better quality operating systems because
> of this BSD adoption.  They may have even caught a few bugs
> for us.

Please enlighten me, what did MS give back concerning the TCP/IP stack,
and what about all the protocol hijacking they have been doing in the
past ? And Apple still doesn't give enough information on their chipsets
to be able to have working agp drivers.

> If it were up to me I'd put all of OCaml and its libraries
> under the Academic Free License which is the current OSI
> best practice for BSD-style licensing.  You would see much
> broader usage of OCaml in the commercial sector.

Can you back this, and what precisecly it is you have against the
current licencing ? Apart from FUD, that is ?

> Yeah I know plenty of people use OCaml at work, I do too,
> don't beat me over the head.  There is a difference between
> internal usage and mass production.  Mass production is
> where you get real returns because the code has to be
> right, or customers complain.  Internal use doesn't generate
> anywhere near that kind of development effort.
> OK, thanks everyone, I know opinions differ, this is just
> my perspective and I hope it was communicated clearly.

No problem, sorry if i responded strongly, but like said, just opinions,
nothing personal in it and don't take it badly.


Sven Luther
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