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Re: Bison and GPL

From: Akim Demaille
Subject: Re: Bison and GPL
Date: 22 Dec 2001 15:56:54 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.0808 (Gnus v5.8.8) XEmacs/21.4 (Civil Service)

>>>>> "James" == James Harris <address@hidden> writes:

James> On a side note where did the source for LR0.c come from? It has
James> a GPL license on it, but I have found the almost exact same
James> source in the FreeBSD distribution under the BSD
James> license. FreeBSD cvs reports that it is orignal and thus came
James> from BSD-lite 4.4.  If this source came from BSD isn't it in
James> violation of the BSD license? Doesnt it need the BSD copyright
James> ??

I have also noted that there are several Yaccs out there which have
striking similarities (read ``share the same code'') with Bison.
Btyacc comes to my mind.

Unless I'm deeply mistaken, Bison was written by Corbett as an
implementation of his PhD.  IIRC, Btyacc was also written by Corbett,
and naturally there is a lot of common code (as a matter of fact,
there are little difference between a backtracking yacc and a
deterministic one: most of the differences are in the skeletons, aka,
parser templates).

Now the questions are:

- did Corbett use code from someone else?
- did he distribute Bison with difference licenses?
- isn't it the converse that happened, i.e., are you sure it is not
  Free BSD who used GPL'd code?

rms might know better?

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