Questions about the implementation of software licenses on software, including questions about open-source licenses.

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7answers
345 views

Which software licenses should I be aware of? [closed]

Licensing is something that I really haven't paid any attention to; I guess I felt there was no need. However I can't but help thinking that I should. So which are the most common licenses that I, as ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Use my own GPL licensed code in a commercial product

I am developing a software project in Java/Swing licensed under GPL v3. Later, I want to create a Android application which uses the algorithms of the Java/Swing application. This Android app will be ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Am I allowed to create closed-source software with open-source code?

I was using a popular music package (Ableton Live) when I opened the legal section of the helpfile and saw that the program contained code licenses that appeared to be both free as in freedom and free ...
7
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4answers
490 views

Is there a difference between “self-plagiarizing” in programming vs doing so as a writer?

I read this Gawker article about how a writer reused some of his older material for new assignments for different magazines. Is there any similar ethical (societal?) dilemma when doing the same ...
7
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4answers
1k views

What constitutes a programming language and how does one copyright a programming language?

I've decided to create a programming language of my own, mostly just for fun. However, I got interested in the legal aspect of it all. You can, for example, licence specific programs under specific ...
7
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5answers
5k views

Using C++/Java to develop software and sell it

I know this question has been asked here before, and I also know that this website is for programming questions only, but please do make an exception, as none of the posts I've come across on this ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Including a GPL-license library in a commercial Java program

I am in the process of helping develop a commercial Java program. We want to use a certain third-party LookAndFeel in the GUI. The problem is that the LookAndFeel library is GPL licensed. Since we are ...
7
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3answers
5k views

Are there deals (free or low cost) to license Visual Studio for open-source developers? [closed]

I have several open-source projects, but I no longer have a license for Visual Studio. I heard that Resharper has some kind of deal for open-source project contributors. Is there something similar ...
7
votes
3answers
575 views

Copyrighting software, templates, etc. under real name or screen name?

My question is hopefully simple--should I copyright my work (art, software, web design, etc.) under my real name or my screen name? My real name and screen name are also easily connected with a bit of ...
7
votes
3answers
325 views

Submitting software to a competition, it becomes their property?

So I'm about to submit a game to a competition, but as I looked through the rules a chunk grabbed my attention: All Entries become the sole and exclusive property of Sponsor and will not be ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Rewrote GNU GPL v2 code in another language: can I change a license?

I rewrote some parts of Mercurial (which is licensed under GNU GPL v2) in C#. Naturally, I looked a lot into original Python code and some parts are direct translations from Python to C#. Is is ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

What copyright date for an update to an open-source project from last year?

In 2011, I released some open-source code that was licensed using the Apache license. As such, all the source files have this boiler plate message at the top: /* Copyright 2011 My Name ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Need help understanding Visual Studio Community Edition license

Recently Microsoft has released a free version of Visual Studio: Visual Studio Community Edition the license says IF YOU COMPLY WITH THESE LICENSE TERMS, YOU HAVE THE RIGHTS BELOW. ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I use a GPL licensed piece of JavaScript on a commercial website?

I'm looking at plupload for some upload features on a website I'm developing. Now plupload is GNU GPLv2 licensed and that implies that all derivative software should also be GPL licensed (right?). ...
7
votes
1answer
96 views

How does one request / handle personal or financial information?

I would like to create a budget app for Android. Obviously, to be competitive, I would need to allow users to get data from their bank. For [huge] security reasons, this stuff is not just freely given ...
7
votes
1answer
481 views

How do I dual license?

I'd like to open source a project of mine under GPL v3. Additionally, I'd like to sell a license for those who wish to use the code in a proprietary application. How do I go about releasing my ...
7
votes
2answers
815 views

For open-source licenses with an acknowledgement clause, how obvious does the notice need to be?

In licenses such as that of libjpeg and freetype, there are clauses like the following: (2) If only executable code is distributed, then the accompanying documentation must state that "this ...
7
votes
2answers
387 views

Writing proprietary and possibly closed source software while avoiding license infractions

I am starting a software project that I want to have the option to keep it proprietary. However, since I generally use a Linux environment, I want to know: How do people write proprietary software in ...
7
votes
4answers
574 views

How should I implement my chosen software license?

I have always kind of wondered, but never took my time to actually ask these questions regarding licensing. Most of these questions are presumably pretty basic, but I have no idea what I'm dealing ...
7
votes
1answer
611 views

Open Source license compatibility checker

Is there a tool available for checking if various combinations of open source licenses are compatible with each other? I'm planning on building various tools that use an Apache license for ...
7
votes
1answer
382 views

What's the best way to acknowledge many FOSS sources in a single project?

I have a project which uses a large number of LGPL, Artistic and other open-source licensed libraries. What's the canonical (i.e. the "standard") way of acknowledging multiple sources in a single ...
7
votes
2answers
877 views

Can a GPLv2 program rely on Apache-licensed libraries?

Can a software program licensed GPL (version 2) rely upon libraries licensed under APLv2 without running afoul of the GPL? The language here suggests to me perhaps not. In my specific case I'm ...
6
votes
4answers
909 views

Does an Open Source license exist that allows me to retain rights to revoke usage of software/source at any time, for any reason, and without warning?

Does an Open Source license exist that allows me to retain rights to revoke usage of software/source at any time, for any reason, and without warning? I want to allow others to use my software and ...
6
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6answers
440 views

What's the rationale of not simply disclosing the license fees for a commercial libary or tool?

Some companies selling software or libraries simply put their licensing model on their web page and be done with it. (Many also contain a disclaimer that there are volume discounts and special ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Can software licensed under GNU General Public License v3 be sold by the original author?

As I know, softwares licensed under the GNU GPL is totally free and not allowed for sale. However, today I found this program called Minitube and it is sold even though it is licensed under GPLv3. ...
6
votes
4answers
957 views

Is it allowed to embed an LGPL command-line tool?

I want to sell a closed-application that depends upon a certain command line tool. Am I allowed to distribute my software including this command line tool? For example, as a separate binary ...
6
votes
7answers
967 views

How to use Open Source Licenses and what do you recommend to me

I have a code that I'd like to share, but I'd like to publish it using an open source license. But I don't know how you have to use that licenses. How do you have to activate an open source license? ...
6
votes
5answers
298 views

“Enterprise” version of GPL'd code?

I know that there are a number of discussions about the GPL on this site but I just ran in to an interesting case of apparent misuse that I (surprisingly) haven’t seen discussed anywhere. The ...
6
votes
3answers
670 views

Is it OK to use sample code from blogs, GitHub, etc… in commercial applications?

When searching the web for a solution to a particular problem, I often find a perfect solution posted on someone's blog, or in a public repository (GitHub, Google Code). Most of the time, the code has ...
6
votes
5answers
209 views

Can I use the test suite from an open source project to verify that my own 'compatible library' is compatible?

The question Is it illegal to rewrite every line of an open source project in a slightly different way, and use it in a closed source project? makes me wonder what would be considered a clean-room ...
6
votes
3answers
357 views

Consequences of not using an open source license?

Lets say you don't use a license for your open source project. And you don't put anything about a license anywhere in the code..is this okay to do?
6
votes
3answers
372 views

What is the difference between releasing code under the BSD license and releasing it as public domain?

You are free to use BSD licensed code for anything, even commercial, closed source software. How is that any different than just releasing it as public domain?
6
votes
2answers
211 views

Licensing code under GPL: are revisions prior to adding GPL license still GPLed?

Suppose I have an already existing codebase which does not have any license headers in any of the source files, nor does it have COPYING file. So when I add all the neccessary GPL "cruft" to, say, ...
6
votes
6answers
359 views

Why should we be aware of licenses?

I know this is common question, but why should a programmer be aware of software licenses as well as extensions and plugins licenses? I'm working in a company which focuses on the business process ...
6
votes
4answers
5k views

Is BSD license compatible with Apache?

Can I develop a BSD-licensed software that extends an Apache-licensed software (and vice-versa)?
6
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3answers
201 views

Can I use GPL code as textual data in my app?

In essence, I'm wondering how licenses affect the legality of using source code as data. By that I mean literally storing code in a database as strings and using it e.g. for some syntax highlighting ...
6
votes
1answer
610 views

What does the Apache licensing mean by “Permitted: Commercial Use”

At choosealicense.com/licenses I am reading the Apache licensing, and see that under Permitted there stands Commercial Use: This software and derivatives may be used for commercial purposes. ...
6
votes
5answers
933 views

Downgrading from GPL v3 to GPL v2

I have this issue with licensing. I downloaded a third-party class from GitHub and it's under the GPL v3 license. However, I used this class on another open-source project which is under the GPL v2 ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Can I use this GPL'd PGP library internally in my company?

This PGP library was bought up by Network Associates and then eventually Symantec Corporation. The source code is available and is licensed under the GPL (it was linked to from here). They have a ...
6
votes
4answers
547 views

Licensing a JavaScript library

I am developing a free, open-source (duh) JavaScript library, and wondering how to license it. I was considering the GNU GPL, but I heard that I must distribute the license with the software, and I'm ...
6
votes
4answers
740 views

Do I need a license before selling software?

I have a small time software firm. Recently we got a major project that the other company wants to sell. We will be making a website and multi-platform mobile apps We are coding in PHP, JAVA, HTML. ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Paid open-source app

The question that bothers me is whether it is possible/feasible/reasonable to expect for an open-source app to sell well on the mobile market? Should I believe that my users will use my app, rather ...
6
votes
5answers
276 views

How are software licenses applied?

I have created a small and helpful project that I'd like to upload to a public repository and share under the FreeBSD license. What are the common steps I should make to apply the license to my code? ...
6
votes
4answers
228 views

How do you make CS students and future programmers aware of the various software licenses and their nuances?

To be specific: How would you include it as part of curriculum? Would it be too boring to just introduce them as a pure law subject? Are there any course structure available or can we derive one? ...
6
votes
3answers
853 views

Is it ok to use VS Express edition to create small utilities at work?

I am developer working mainly in C# who has now been assigned to a Data Migration project. (Sad story, I know. But that's for another day). We are currently creating column-to-column mapping between ...
6
votes
5answers
279 views

Can I use open source libraries in trialware?

I have written a small Java program which i'd like to distribute on my website. I have used a few external librarys which declare following licences: Apache License (2.0), LGPL and one API doesn't ...
6
votes
2answers
625 views

What's the best license for my website?

I have developed a unique website but do not have a lot of fund to protect it with trademark or patents. I'm looking for suggestions so that when my supervisor gets my codes, some laws restrict anyone ...
6
votes
1answer
908 views

What's the fundamental difference between the MIT and the Boost Open Source licenses?

What's the fundamental difference between the MIT open source licence : Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation ...
6
votes
1answer
425 views

Can a programmer renounce ownership of source code?

I came across this license: /** * The author disclaims copyright to this source code. In place of * a legal notice, here is a blessing: * * May you do good and not evil. * May you find ...
6
votes
3answers
318 views

Can I use my username in a legal license?

I have an open source project, but I don't want to use my real name in the license file. Legally, can I just use my project hosting username instead? I know programmers Are Not Lawyers™, but I'm ...