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[Axiom-developer] APL2 is evil [was: Re: [Aldor-l] [open-axiom-devel] [f

From: Christian Aistleitner
Subject: [Axiom-developer] APL2 is evil [was: Re: [Aldor-l] [open-axiom-devel] [fricas-devel] umlaut in Guess - mailing list for algebra]
Date: Wed, 05 Sep 2007 11:12:49 +0200
User-agent: Opera Mail/9.23 (Linux)


On Tue, 04 Sep 2007 22:12:12 +0200, Bill Page <address@hidden> wrote:

example: modified BSD is also compatible with Aldor's new APL2
license. Incorporating Aldor into Axiom in such a way that Aldor was
*required* in order to build Axiom would have a similar affect of
"infecting" Axiom with Aldor's "non-commerical uses only clause".

I agree. IANAL, but merging Axiom (in a modified BSD version) and Aldor (in an APL2 version) would infect Axiom with APL2's "non-commercial uses only" (fifth *) clause. I know that you probably just wanted to give a short example involving APL2, but from my point of view that's not the whole story. And the untold part of the story is hair-raising.

If one would merge Axiom (in a modified BSD version) and Aldor (in an APL2 version), the resulting project would be a modification of Axiom and a modification of Aldor. The modification of Axiom does not make too much difficulties, because Axiom is used under the modified BSD. But the modification of Aldor is a problem. The APL2 does not only carry the problematic fifth *, but also the fourth *--which is even more evil. The APL2 license requires that:
(b) you grant the Aldor Software Organization a royalty-free license to use,
      modify or redistribute your modifications without limitation, and
(APL2, fourth *)

Who would be legally entitled to give "the Aldor Software Organization" (I will use ASO to abbreviate this) for example a license to "redistribute" the modifications (i.e.: a modified Axiom) "without limitation"?

What does this mean? The "without limitation" actually means that one would hand over the modified version of Axiom to the ASO without the limitations imposed by the modified BSD license.

Even more, according to my understanding of Austrian law, I must not distribute Axiom (Axiom, not the merged Aldor+Axiom. The reason is that the merged version of Axiom will be mostly identical to Axiom and therefore, the ASO controls these parts "without limitation") any longer under the modified BSD without the consent of ASO, because my distribution of Axiom would "limit" the possibilities of ASO to take advantage of Axiom (for example to charge money for Axiom or the distribution of Axiom).

I know these things sound far-fetched.
I do not assume anybody would be legally entitled to grant ASO these rights.
And I do not think ASO would do such things.
But why does ASO force contributers to grant ASO such rights, if they do not inted to use them once in a while?

Kind regards,

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