[GRASS5] New info on openDWG

Michael Barton michael.barton at asu.edu
Thu Sep 2 00:41:01 EDT 2004


Thanks for the insightful comments and the kind words. I will try to talk
with the Open Design Alliance folks in the next week or two when I have a
bit of time during normal hours.

Beyond Michael Tiemann's helpful suggestion about looking at the Cygwin and
MySQL models, do you have any recommendations I could pass on to them as to
how they might change their license to be more Free Software friendly, while
still keeping the option (which I assume they want) to charge a fee to
people who want to sell commercial software using their libraries?
(Apparently the latter include ESRI and some fairly big CAD firms, though
not AutoDesk)


On 9/1/04 7:05 AM, "Bernhard Reiter" <bernhard at intevation.de> wrote:

> On Tue, Aug 31, 2004 at 10:03:02PM -0700, Michael Barton wrote:
>> Actually the Open Design Alliance licensing strategy is not all that
>> confusing. Basically, if you want to sell a piece of software that uses the
>> libraries or other utilities that they have written, you can do so. You just
>> need to pay them a licensing fee for making a profit from their software. If
>> you choose to use their software and not pay them a license fee, you cannot
>> sell your software either.
> It is not confusing, but unfriendly to Free Software like GRASS.
>> I don't think their license is problematic in and of itself, and thought
>> that this kind of license might be compatible with the way GRASS is
>> distributed, and worth asking about. But general consensus seems to be that
>> it is not compatible with the GRASS license and distribution.
> I think it was a very good idea from you to go and ask about it.
> It seem though that the Open Design Alliance is not just incompatible
> with GRASS and its license, but also more general with with Free Software.
>> While it is unfortunate that GRASS cannot make use of openDWG more
>> extensively than it now does, I am glad that the people who create and
>> manage the GRASS project are conscientious enough about proper licensing to
>> consider this as thoroughly as they have. This is important to the people
>> who use GRASS. 
> Yes it is very important. Before 1999 GRASS was loosing trust
> of many users because there were not clear licensing terms.
> Since then GRASS has regained a lot of trust and a few developers.
>> However, if there is any kind of consensus about communicating with the
>> alliance about ways to work with the GRASS project, I am happy to help in
>> any way I can since they are HQ'ed here in my neighborhood.
> I would consider you part of the GRASS project.
> Most people working on GRASS are Free Software people and it would
> might interesting to explain the benefit of Free Software to them.
> Unless the alliance seriously looks into being friendly to Free Software
> there is not much that can be done.
> Regards,
> Bernhard

Michael Barton, Professor
School of Human Origins, Cultures, & Society
Arizona State University
Tempe, AZ  85287

Web - http://www.public.asu.edu/~cmbarton

More information about the grass-dev mailing list