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Re: GPL licenced Java application using non GPL jars (libraries)

From: Stefaan A Eeckels
Subject: Re: GPL licenced Java application using non GPL jars (libraries)
Date: Mon, 22 May 2006 21:11:08 +0200

On Mon, 22 May 2006 20:21:28 +0200
Alexander Terekhov <> wrote:

> Stefaan A Eeckels wrote:
> [...]
> > The source code is not linked with the libraries. The combination of
> > the (compiled) source code and whatever library it uses occurs in
> > the system running the program.
> > 
> > As it is extremely difficult to distribute a running program, this
> > clause would pertain to linked programs that contain both a
> > transformation of the source code (the object) and all or part of
> > the libraries (where we could argue ad nauseam whether the
> > instructions
> (Defender of the GPL)

Frankly, I think what Eben Moglen says makes no sense, more specifically
the following (from your reference):

> Moglen: In all good faith, I can't tell you. If the kernel were pure
> GPL in its license terms, the answer...would be: You couldn't link
> proprietary video drivers into it whether dynamically or statically,
> and you couldn't link drivers which were proprietary in their license
> terms.

_You_ can always link whatever you want to a piece of code that's
running on your computer. What can be off-limits is _distributing_
binary code without the source, _if_ the binary is a derivative work of
a GPLed program. 

In any case, the OP wants to distribute his source code under a
particular license. Unless we accept that everything is a derivative
work of everything else (which is certain sense is the case, as humans
do nothing in total isolation), original source code is neither a
derivative work of the OS the executable runs under, nor of the
libraries the executable uses, nor of the computer language it's
written in. 

The OP should thus feel free to distribute the work under the license
of his choice.

Stefaan A Eeckels
Ninety-Ninety Rule of Project Schedules:
        The first ninety percent of the task takes ninety percent of
the time, and the last ten percent takes the other ninety percent.

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