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Re: reinvent (for GPL) code u wrote for employer who owns it?

From: Barry Margolin
Subject: Re: reinvent (for GPL) code u wrote for employer who owns it?
Date: Wed, 25 Mar 2009 21:23:27 -0400
User-agent: MT-NewsWatcher/3.5.3b3 (Intel Mac OS X)

In article <>,
 Alexander Terekhov <> wrote:

> Rjack wrote:
> > 
> > Barry Margolin wrote:
> > > In article <>,
> > > (Name withheld by request) wrote:
> > >
> > >> How might one ethically/legally re-write a suite of scripts one wrote
> > >> for a former employer, so that the new code may be shared under GPL?
> > >
> > > IANAL, but I think this is likely to be difficult.  You have to ensure
> > > that your new code looks nothing like the old code.
> "One way to avoid infringement when writing a program that is similar to
> another program is through the use of a “clean room” procedure. This is
> what was done when companies cloned the BIOS of the IBM personal
> computer to produce compatible systems. In a clean room procedure, there
> are two separate teams working on the development of the new program.

How can you use the clean room procedure when the original programmer is 
writing the new program?  There are no teams, there's just one guy.

The clean room procedure only makes sense if you're reverse-engineering 
a program, not if you're using your own memory and talents.

Barry Margolin,
Arlington, MA
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