Producing the instruction implementations -Reply

James P White
Mon, 12 May 1997 10:23:37 -0700

At 09:10 AM 5/12/97 -0700, Marcus G. Daniels wrote:
>>>>>> "RW" == Ray Whitmer <> writes:
>RW> I don't know if the gnu public license is an acceptable
>RW> basis for the project, or if the goals
>RW> are to make something more open that even commercial providers
>RW> could directly incorporate into commercial offerings. 
>Commercial providers *can* incorporate GPLed code in to commercial
>offerings. Cygnus Solutions is an example of a company doing this.

Well, it is interesting to note that Per Bothner, author of the GUN Java
bytecode and math libraries provides a special license for that code.  The
special provision is that they may be distributed without tripping copyleft
if they are distributed unchanged.  He specifies this as an exception to
GPL, not the LGPL.

The reason he does this is that he distributes those libraries with Kawa,
his implementation of Scheme in Java (including a Java bytecode compiler).
Kawa is *not* covered by GPL, but is in fact truly free software.  The
manual has its own license that is essentially copyleft.

It is clear to me that the reason he did not use the GPL for Kawa is that he
wants it to be adopted by commercial vendors in their products.  This is
what my company is planning to do, and we would not do it if Kawa was
restricted by copyleft.  This is the position of practically every software
vendor, with the sole exception of the relatively small number of commercial
GNU support companies, which are more like consultants than product vendors.

James P. White                        Netscape DevEdge Champion for IFC
Director of Technology Adventure Online Gaming
Developers of Gameworld -- Live Action Role-Playing and Strategic Games        Pagesmiths' home is