[cc-community] Open Hardware Licence
alan at lxorguk.ukuu.org.uk
Fri May 8 06:01:08 EDT 2009
> lot of time explaining to me why I shouldn't call it "open"
> hardware instead of calling it "free", which soooo missed the point.
In your opinion - the FSF has spent a long time forumlated its viewpoints
based on a fundamental idea of a set of "freedoms". Expecting them to
suddenely go in a different direction is a bit like expecting a
libertarian to endorse a "big government" view point because you plan an
"open" big government 8)
> > however I would strongly suggest talking to an IP expert before trying to
> > apply any of the software licences to non software - they can blow up in
> > spectacular ways.
> APSL uses generic language. Any derivative must be made public
> and must be copylefted with teh APSL license. This was intended
> to fill the "hole" with web server software, but by prohibiting
> private derivatives, it also works with hardware source code.
Thats why I said talk to an IP expert - to start with you need to
ascertain what *can* even be copyrighted, what would need various design
rights registering and where you cannot stop private derivatives. Then
put it into an international context and it gets fun.
> Richard Stallman seems to be attached to "private derivatives"
> that are not subject to copyleft. Probably because his business
> model runs off of having everyone who works on his code assign
> rights to him, which he can then create derivatives of, and
> sell to someone under a non-copyleft license.
You appear rather confused.
The FSF from even before it was the FSF felt that what is now often called
the "right to tinker" was important. In fact without a right to private
derivatives at some level free software just would not work. The
challenge I think is how to express a boundary line between tinkering and
The code assignment policy of the FSF is primarily about making it easier
to enforce the licence. On odd occasions they have relicensed bits of
their stuff to other projects under other free licenses when they think
it furthers their general cause.
Their revenue model isn't around selling proprietary versions of the same
code although there are other companies/brands who work on exactly this
model (MySQL, Trolltech etc).
> So, (1) I wouldn't hold my breath for FSF to come out with
> a "no private derivatives" license like APSL and (2) I would
> take any of FSF's advice on such a license with a grain of salt,
> because they're not going to like something that conflicts with
> their income.
No private derivatives is contrary to everything the FSF believe in so
such a license from them is indeed probably rather unlikely. #2 however I
think is rather wrong. Any FSF advice is going to be coloured - but not
by some ficticious income model, rather by their ideological model which
says 'right to modify = GOOD'
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