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LinuxDevices.com: Using GPL software in embedded applications

Mar 05, 2001, 12:12 (2 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jerry Epplin)

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[ Thanks to LinuxDevices.com for this link. ]

"In a recent article in Integrated Communications Design , Mike Downing interviews Curt Schacker, vice president of corporate marketing for Wind River Systems. In the interview, Schacker expresses his "fear" that legal ambiguity surrounding the GPL "is impeding development in the embedded open-source arena."

"In Schacker's hypothetical scenario, a company making Ethernet switches uses Linux for the platform and chooses not to release their code under the GPL, because it represents the bulk of their product's core technology. Shacker fears that because the GPL has not been tested in court, this company's project may be in jeopardy. He says, "Can you imagine a court case some day that determines that all of the software you've developed falls under the GPL, and is now in the public domain?"

"While some have jumped to the conclusion that Schacker is cynically spreading FUD ("Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt") about a technology (Linux) and development model (open source) that poses a threat to his company, I prefer to think that he is genuinely concerned about the welfare of users of Linux in embedded applications."

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