[Gdal-dev] OpenEV licence

gwalter at atlsci.com gwalter at atlsci.com
Wed Feb 5 18:11:16 EST 2003

OpenEV is licensed under LGPL, not GPL.  It can be (and is) used in
proprietary software.

Gillian (OpenEV developer at Atlantis)

Simon Perkins wrote:

> On Wed, 2003-02-05 at 12:08, Andrey Kiselev wrote:
> > On Wed, Feb 05, 2003 at 05:36:35AM -0800, Ayman Kamal wrote:
> > > I found at http://remotesensing.org/gdal/faq.html
> > > that GDAL is free, does the same apply to OpenEV?
> >
> > GDAL distributed under X/MIT license, OpenEV comes with GPL.
> > You can do what you want with GDAL except removing copyright messages
> > from sources, OpenEV usage is more restricted: you can't use sources in
> > closed non-free projects.
> I thought OpenEV was LGPL'd?
> See e.g.:
> http://sourceforge.net/projects/openev/
> http://openev.sourceforge.net/geo_inov_proj_summary/openev_open_source.html
> The LGPL means you can use it in proprietary software, surely?
> Sy
> P.S.
> <PhilosophicalDigression>
> Personally I think the LGPL is fantastic for encouraging people to
> contribute to standard re-usable software components like GDAL and
> OpenEV, and making those components a standard.
> Say that I am in a commercial company and I would like to incorporate
> GDAL in my code, but it lacks some feature I need (like a driver for
> some format). It makes sense for me to develop and contribute that
> driver to the open source since that's the only way it will get
> incorporated into future developments of the component. There's no
> advantage to me "stealing" GDAL and keeping my driver to myself since
> then I won't benefit from others' future work on the component. At the
> same time my company doesn't need to buy into the "thou shalt not sell
> software" philosophy required by the GPL. Other people get my driver,
> the component becomes more useful and gets incorporated into even more
> software, and attracts more developers. Everyone wins.
> In contrast, the GPL puts severe restrictions on possible business
> models that are not easily accepted by many commercial companies and
> even semi-commercial entities like the national lab I work for. In doing
> so, it can act as a barrier to potential contributors and restrict the
> use and growth of the component.
> Some counter-arguments (and counter-counter-arguments):
> - Richard Stallman and others argue that libraries should use the GPL
> to force more people to make their _application_ software free (due to
> the infectious nature of the GPL). See
> http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/why-not-lgpl.html for details. The cost
> is that many commercial programmers / potential contributors are turned
> away.
> - There is also an argument I've heard that developers won't want to
> contribute to an LGPL project when others might "steal" their efforts,
> but that seems to be more of an argument against open source than
> against LGPL.
> I'm not opposed to the GPL in all cases, but I don't really like it for
> libraries and reusable components.
> </PhilosophicalDigression>
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