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Re: GNU licenses

From: mike4ty4
Subject: Re: GNU licenses
Date: 4 Sep 2006 12:33:58 -0700
User-agent: G2/0.2

David Kastrup wrote:
> writes:
> > David Kastrup wrote:
> >> writes:
> >
> >> > Which raises another question: What happens if I learn something
> >> > from the GNU software, like a "trick" or a more efficient way of
> >> > programming some algorithm? If I use that METHOD/KNOWLEDGE even
> >> > if not the ORIGINAL CODE does this mean I have to GNU?
> >>
> >> Copyright concerns a particular expression, not the idea behind it.
> >> Restricting access to ideas is the area of patents, not copyright.
> >>
> >> In order to be sure that no copyrightable expression from a good
> >> idea remains, large companies employ a "cleanroom" tactic: one team
> >> analyses the copyrighted code, and then writes a specification for
> >> it.  A different team without access to the original code then
> >> rewrites the code from specification.  If the whole is done in a
> >> well-documented way, it is likely to hold up in court.
> >
> > And what about an individual, not a multi-employee big fat
> > corporation?
> Then you are not overly likely to be on the radar for high-profile
> lawsuits.  Be sure that your code is structured significantly
> different.  Making an abstract interface description will help your
> case, too.  Try working from that description instead of your memory
> of the code.
> Note that this is nothing particular to the GPL.

Well I guess so.

> >> Well, so why do you want to make money off the work of others
> >> without recompensating them?  You are free to write to the
> >> copyright holders of the GPLed software and negotiate a different
> >> license, and pay for that privilege.
> >>
> >
> > Of course it's totally up them (the owner) whether or not I have to
> > pay for that privilege.
> Sure.  As it is totally up to you whether or not others have to pay
> for the privilege of using your code.

Yep. I _need_ the money, for example.

> > Also, since I'd be starting from very little money, would they let
> > me pay for it over time using the income I get from the program?
> No way to find out but ask them.


> > Just out of curiosity, if you made a GPL program and I wanted to use
> > a bit of code in a for-profit program (I'm not a big company
> > though), would you want me to pay money up front or could I pay it
> > off with the income I get?
> Very much depends on the case at hand.  If I feel you are dealing with
> a fringe market, I might make it a one-time payment.  If I feel that
> there is something sustainable in it, I might try for a profit ratio.
> If I find the project to be distasteful, I might refuse altogether.
> Or I might make a deal for dual-licensing (Trolltech publishes Qt
> under multiple licenses, GPL and proprietary, and the latter makes
> their income).

So what if I don't have enough for the "one-time" payment (would
it be like $1000 or more (!)), and thus the program has to go out to
get the money?

> -- 
> David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum

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