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Licensing questions (was: [bug] elf.h incomplete)
On 03.05.2012 19:24, Christopher Faylor wrote:
By the way, interesting question. It raises up from time to time here
and there, but noone gives the answer...
Right. I've noticed the incompleteness of elf.h from time to time too but
extending it would be tedious since you can't just cut/paste from a GPLv*
file. Maybe one of the BSDs has something more complete these days?
Is there any strict definition of "derived work"?
The problem is: we have some #define in GPLed code. And i want to make
some non-GPLed code interoperable. Consequently, i need the same
#define. Exactly the our case. Of course i could copy-paste the code,
and it would definitely be "derived work". But what if i don't
copy-paste this code, but retype it by hands? Still a copy? Well, add
some more cleanup. Take a piece of paper, write down all names and
values. Drink lots of whiskey (wine, vodka) to erase own memory ;-) Next
day take this paper and write own include. Is it still "derived work" ?
But, after all, we still have only names and values, nothing more, and
no matter how we made our version. Does "using the same name"
automatically mean "derived work"? But in this case IMHO this as a
nonsense. There's even an anecdote about Microsoft having to opensource
all their stuff because their code uses GPLed "i++" fragment. Well,
copyright infringement applies here as well, based on the reverse claim. :)
So - where are limits of "derived work" ? And should this meaning be
applied to public visible (like includes, APIs, etc) stuff at all ?
Because if the answer is yes, this effectively forbids existence of
alternate solutions to anything at all.
After all, such reimplementations fall into "fair use" category.
P.S. I would do it and submit a patch, but here at Samsung any code
submitted upstream requires review and approval, in order to prevent
classified information leak. This is of course possible, but this would
be long way for such a trivial thing. You (Cygwin team) would fix it
Expert engineer, Samsung Moscow research center
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