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Re: [OctDev] low level I/O (GPIB, USBTMC, VXI11)

From: Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso
Subject: Re: [OctDev] low level I/O (GPIB, USBTMC, VXI11)
Date: Sun, 25 Nov 2012 21:30:59 -0500

On 25 November 2012 17:48, Julien Salort <address@hidden> wrote:
> I'm not very amused personally. I was wrong to think that Octave was a
> good choice for instrument control. I wanted something free because I
> didn't want to rely on restricted licenses for my experimental setups:
> what happens if the network gets down ? No license server, no instrument
> control anymore. That seemed unacceptable to me. That's why I've been
> advocating for Octave to several colleagues.
> Now I have a bunch of Octave-only code that I can't share with
> anyone. If I had chosen Matlab in the first place, I would be able to
> publish the code without restriction. This is very paradoxical and I had
> not anticipated this problem.

The problem isn't Octave. It's the license of the non-free libraries
it's linking to. Matlab's license is even more restrictive and I
imagine they would also consider you linking to both libraries to be
worse. The GPL is far more permissive than Matlab's license, so I
imagine Matlab's EULA would also pose the same problem. If not, I
would be happy to be proven wrong and be pointed to the clause in the
Matlab EULA that allows you to make derivative work of both Matlab and
the non-free libraries you're linking to.

I agree that not being allowed to share your work seems problematic,
and I am not happy about this either. I am much less happy with how
you are forced to use non-free software to communicate with your
hardware. You shouldn't be unhappy with Octave. You should be unhappy
with the hardware manufacturers who won't let you freely use the
software for the hardware you've already bought.

- Jordi G. H.

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