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Re: My Favorite soapbox : XML linkage (was Re: [DotGNU]Jabber-thon)

From: James Michael DuPont
Subject: Re: My Favorite soapbox : XML linkage (was Re: [DotGNU]Jabber-thon)
Date: Mon, 10 Jun 2002 04:09:32 -0700 (PDT)


At the risk of beating a dead horse, I reiterate.
If this is not the right forum, tell me and I will
drop it.

My argument again : 
It is very difficult to get the same expansion of the
codebase that you see in GPLed staticly linked
programs with web services. Instead of adding thier
changes to the original codebase, they can just tack
on bits and bobs.

Any user can just break the GPL linkage chain at any
time and you can get a whole plethoria of licences
building on top of each other. That is one of the
things that makes the GPl so strong is that it levels
the playing field. 

Anyone can add one or two lines of code and then
invoke another service, at the cost of course of
network latency. Users could just setup a loopback
interface and put non-free extensions on the same
server with free software. That would then reduce the
network lag and still protect them from the GPL.

The protection offered by the GPL of code is then
reduced. That is still a valid issue.

--- Richard Stallman <address@hidden> wrote:
>     What if we want to create web services that can
> only
>     be used by GPLed programs? 
> In general, if you have implented just an arbitrary
> web service, I
> don't think there is any way to impose such a
> requirement.  Perhaps
> you could require each user to sign a contract
> promising to use only
> GPL-covered software to access the system.  

>I have a
> bad feeling about
> the idea of a web site's trying to restrict what
> software users can
> access it with, though.

Yes, the question is if we can publish some web
interfaces with a explict statement on thier linkage :
Some would be lgpl, but you might want others to be

Remeber, we are not talking about end user services
here, but itermediate functions exposed for dynamic
linking via the net. 

You then need client software to use them. We dont
want to lose all the clients to non-free software.
> In some cases, if the web service in question
> consists of talking in
> an intimate way with some GPL-covered server
> software, we might try to
> argue that the client side and the server are really
> one program and
> the GPL applies to the client.  However, in that
> situation it would
> be rather hard for that argument to prevail.
I just would like to see some way of doing that easily
without causing too many waves.

> It seems to follow that if DotGNU programs use
> Jabber in a
> straightforward way to communicate with each other,
> non-free programs
> will easily be able to talk with them.  Is that a
> bad thing?
> I am not certain.
I have no problem with jabber at all, it makes sense
to allow free and non free software to use the jabber

I was just questioning if we can create of webservices
with some form of greater protection.

>     We still need to be rethink the entire licensing
> issue
>     for the creation of the GPL "viral" effect on
> the
>     greater level. 
> Please don't compare the GPL with a virus.
> It is misleading, and it is very unfriendly.
I am really sorry about that. I had already
apologised, and it wont happen again.

Best Regards,


James Michael DuPont

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