9fans - fans of the OS Plan 9 from Bell Labs
 help / color / mirror / Atom feed
From: "ibrahim via 9fans" <9fans@9fans.net>
To: 9fans <9fans@9fans.net>
Subject: Re: [9fans] licence question
Date: Sat, 29 Jan 2022 08:03:05 -0500	[thread overview]
Message-ID: <16434613850.BC38c.59069@composer.9fans.topicbox.com> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <CAFSF3XPrLiGnLUNbYbMY9x8hBw3opWKWupJL08scp4_D1atcsA@mail.gmail.com>

[-- Attachment #1: Type: text/plain, Size: 6254 bytes --]

On Friday, 28 January 2022, at 10:59 PM, hiro wrote:
> why should it be closed source?
you're gonna seriously put the effort to remove all the traces of source files?

This kiosk app is meant for students in math, electrotechnics, mechanics ... its a closed area network where only registered students can connect. This plattform is only meant for exchange of data and informations. The app is distributed as an iso to be run from bare hardware or qemu (virtual box). The current version is running based on FreeBSD and has a size caused by X11 necessity and accompanying programs of 800 MB. I'm trying to reduce the size and increasing the performance by using plan9. My plattform generates form many simulation tasks, symbolic calculations, plotting, ... intermediate C code and translates this to programs which are called as child processes and generate their output for rendering. LLVM is needed two times in the FreeBSD installation once for X11 and once as a system compiler. By using plan9 I can reduce the size of this kiosk application to estimated 300 MB. I gave plan9 a try a few years ago and was fascinated but the licence wasn't attractive at that time. But now it's ideal for such tasks.

Some sources are part of this installment inside a loop file those are provided internally with a ramfs so in time compilation gets possible. The moment I include GPL licensed code into this ramfs this would infect my own licence. My plattform is BSD 2 claused the students can distribute it freely but the mechanics for connecting to the closed area network are hidden. The MIT licence, zlib, Ogg Vorbis license are compatible with BSD 2 license and require proper acknowlegdement but GPL can't be used in such a manner. 

Plan9 with its new license is optimal for such applications. I think that plan9 would have been more wide spread if this new license would have been applied from the beginning. And I believe that the reason why NetBSD, OpenBSD, FreeBSD are not as wide spread as Linux was the lack of a compiler suite conforming to the BSD license. Some time ago the BSD project asked for a license change for plan9 to integrate the C compiler which didn't happen at that time. But I'm sure that in the near future their will be some BSD forks which will take more ideas and tools from Plan9 (especially the compiler suite). Plan9 has more advantages besides those - nearly direct access to the hardware and a simplified way to enhancements due to its namespaces and 9fs. 

I'm using BSD systems since 1991 and I think its important to follow a strict licensing scheme otherwise many years later as it happened in NetBSD, FreeBSD and OpenBSD you start to search for alternative implementations cause at some point your code is not accompanied by incompatible licensed code but is depending on those so it is infected. If you decide to distribute a system with a non infecting open source license than its important to do this in a consistent form. The more time passes the more you depend on parts and the less gets the chance to exchange those parts. 

I am consequently avoiding infecting licenses in my projects and my distributions for decades now and those parts of plan9 (9front) which are not conforming are not a big deal to throw away. diff, patch are available in conforming licensed versions. I prefer ogg vorbis to mp3 due to its patent problems in the past. There are dozens of truetype fonts with better quality and distributable. The only problematic part not only to plan9 but also all BSD systems is ghostscript but I have an existing translater from postscript to svg and a closed source svg library for rendering for other projects where I would perhaps need page and the dependency to ghostscript. No need for lzip and xen ...

The reason why this reply was this long is simple :

My experience from the past and my involvements in BSD projects tought me that many open source projects try to take large steps in short time and most often they borrow code or libraries from projects not conforming with their chosen license. Legal questions are taken very lightly for a few years but than at some point in time those legal questions surface. The reason why linux took over was this simple - BSD 4.3 lost its compilers.

There are people (I am one of them) who also have to write commercial projects for a living. I'm developing embedded software for electronic circuits and plan9 is now a real alternative for me cause of its new license. I can decide for each project if I want to make it open source or not. And by consequently avoiding infecting licenses I can use the same code base for open source as well as closed source projects.

Why do you think p9f asked for a relicensing of plan9 while it was already gpl licensed a few years ago ? Both are redistributable but the MIT version is also usable for closed source commercial projects while the GPL version is not. Does this matter ? Yes of course it matters for people or companies. Its sometimes amusing to see developers taking legal issues lightly. 

I'm not an advocate but be assured : The moment you distribute lets say a set top box based on plan9 using legacy9 or 9front and you don't delete those mentioned parts from your distribution you can't make it closed source. If your set top box plays mp3 or opens a pdf ps file by using ghostscript and this is a significant part of the functionality you have created a derived work based on or depending on GPL'ed code. To solve this problem you would have to seperate those parts from your hardware and make it downloadable to keep it closed source. But this wouldn't be a real solution because page depends on the existence of ghostscript to display pdf and ps files so you have a 1:1 dependency. FSF perhaps won't take this seriously. Aladdin will because they offer a commercial license alternative. And your concurrents will also look closely to make your product open sourced. This is not fiction this is reality happening hundreds of times per year. 

------------------------------------------
9fans: 9fans
Permalink: https://9fans.topicbox.com/groups/9fans/T3e07bfdf263a83c8-M5595c4fa89c61db53873ff4c
Delivery options: https://9fans.topicbox.com/groups/9fans/subscription

[-- Attachment #2: Type: text/html, Size: 7162 bytes --]

  reply	other threads:[~2022-01-29 13:03 UTC|newest]

Thread overview: 61+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2022-01-27 22:43 ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-27 22:48 ` hiro
2022-01-27 23:33   ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-28  0:05     ` hiro
2022-01-28  0:42       ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-28  0:46         ` ori
2022-01-28  1:14           ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-28  3:23             ` Kurt H Maier via 9fans
2022-01-28 12:01               ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-28 21:59                 ` hiro
2022-01-29 13:03                   ` ibrahim via 9fans [this message]
2022-01-29 13:24                     ` hiro
2022-01-29 14:08                       ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 14:59                         ` sirjofri
2022-01-29 18:11                         ` Grant Defayette
2022-01-29 19:00                           ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 20:43                         ` hiro
2022-01-29 21:32                           ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 21:42                             ` hiro
2022-01-29 22:23                               ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 23:14                                 ` sirjofri
2022-01-29 23:27                                   ` hiro
2022-01-29 23:36                                   ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-30  0:08                                     ` hiro
2022-01-30  1:45                                       ` ron minnich
2022-01-30  2:18                                         ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-30 21:00                                           ` ron minnich
2022-02-01 15:08                                             ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-02-01 17:06                                               ` Dan Cross
2022-01-29 22:14                         ` Bakul Shah
2022-01-29 22:40                           ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-02-04 15:30                         ` Kent R. Spillner
2022-02-04 16:17                           ` Grant Defayette
2022-02-04 16:29                           ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-02-04 21:12                             ` sirjofri
2022-02-04 17:48                           ` Kurt H Maier via 9fans
2022-02-05  0:08                             ` Frank D. Engel, Jr.
2022-02-05 16:47                               ` hiro
2022-01-29 14:26                     ` David Leimbach via 9fans
2022-02-01 14:12                       ` Dan Cross
2022-02-01 22:47                         ` hiro
2022-02-02 13:22                           ` Wes Kussmaul
2022-02-02 16:25                             ` ori
2022-02-02 18:22                               ` ron minnich
2022-02-02 19:00                                 ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 16:15                     ` Wes Kussmaul
2022-01-29 16:56                     ` Bakul Shah
2022-01-29 17:17                       ` ori
2022-01-29 18:14                       ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 18:58                     ` cinap_lenrek
2022-01-29 19:23                       ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 20:48                         ` hiro
2022-01-29 21:18                           ` Steve Simon
2022-01-29 21:34                             ` hiro
2022-01-29 21:43                             ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-29 22:44                               ` hiro
2022-01-29 23:26                                 ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-30  7:55                           ` tlaronde
2022-01-30 13:44                             ` ibrahim via 9fans
2022-01-30 13:56                               ` tlaronde
2022-01-28  3:14 ` Lucio De Re

Reply instructions:

You may reply publicly to this message via plain-text email
using any one of the following methods:

* Save the following mbox file, import it into your mail client,
  and reply-to-all from there: mbox

  Avoid top-posting and favor interleaved quoting:
  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Posting_style#Interleaved_style

* Reply using the --to, --cc, and --in-reply-to
  switches of git-send-email(1):

  git send-email \
    --in-reply-to=16434613850.BC38c.59069@composer.9fans.topicbox.com \
    --to=9fans@9fans.net \
    --subject='Re: [9fans] licence question' \
    /path/to/YOUR_REPLY

  https://kernel.org/pub/software/scm/git/docs/git-send-email.html

* If your mail client supports setting the In-Reply-To header
  via mailto: links, try the mailto: link

This is a public inbox, see mirroring instructions
for how to clone and mirror all data and code used for this inbox;
as well as URLs for NNTP newsgroup(s).