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Re: [Axiom-developer] [fricas-devel] Re: CAD package from Renaud Rioboo

From: Waldek Hebisch
Subject: Re: [Axiom-developer] [fricas-devel] Re: CAD package from Renaud Rioboo
Date: Tue, 9 Sep 2014 23:42:36 +0200 (CEST)

> On 09/09/2014 04:03 PM, Waldek Hebisch wrote:
> > Thanks.  However, I have a compilable version for FriCAS.
> Huh? Where?

In my machine.

> > I have waited to have clear copyright situation.  Currently FriCAS is
> > BSD licenced while IIRC the CAD pacakge is GPL.
> GPL? What are your sources for this claim?
> Axiom is BSD licensed. And Renaud Rioboo writes in
> ==========================
> Recently Martin Rubey thought it could be a good idea to release them and I
> have of course no objection on that point nor on sharing these sources with
> the community. If there is some interest on it you may include it into the
> Axiom distribution with the same permissions than the rest of the software.
> While I wait for my lab to give me the necessary permissions to be able
> to use
> Axiom and export this software you may find it's sources at the unlisted url
> ==========================
> That sounds as if that is licensing the source code under BSD. I don't
> exactly understand what is meant by "permission to be able to use Axiom
> and export this software". Maybe he meant the commercial version of Axiom.

AFAICS the above does not really give us any rights: my understanding
is Renaud Rioboo can not give us such right without permission
of his institution.

There was recent message (which I can not fing ATM) that he
got permission to distribute it under GPL.  Gaby asked about
BSD to fit Axiom licence, but AFAICS up to now there is no
definite answer.

> > Including it in FriCAS would effectively change FriCAS licence to
> > GPL.
> In fact, I'd love FriCAS under GPL.
> But no, if FriCAS includes a SPAD source package under GPL that doesn't
> change the license of FriCAS to GPL. It changes the license of a
> *binary* distribution to GPL, so that such a binary distribution must be
> accompanied with sources and the whole thing must be GPL.
> You would then still be allowed to distribute the FriCAS sources under
> BSD with one (or several) source files under GPL. Since there is no
> linking in the source-only distribution, nothing in the GPL 3.0 license
> text says that a mere packaging of BSD and GPL files would automatically
> make the BSD files be licensed under GPL. IANAL, but I'm pretty sure
> that the FSF argues in the same way.

If it is "mere aggregation", then why bother, we can put updated
version for example in the wiki.  OTOH, if build system is
adjusted so that files get included into binary, then FSF
claims that GPL affects also sources (read their "success
story" about Objective C (needs gcc) and clisp (needs readline)).

Of course since we distribute sources, anybody wanting pure BSD
can remove GPL-ed parts as long as the rest does not depend on
them.  But if we keep such part indpendent, then there is little
benefit compared to distributing package separately.  OTOH
if other parts of FriCAS start depending on it, then GPL
affects all FriCAS sources.

Currently almost all files in FriCAS use BSD type licence.
Exceptions (for example configure or axiom.sty)
may be considerd inessential from licence point of view.
Putting  into repository normal source file under different
licence means that we (and anybody caring about licence) would
have to track licence on file-by-file basis.  If there is a
strong reason such tracking is doable, but IMO benefits
do not justify this.

                              Waldek Hebisch

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