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CNET News.com: A third way for software development

May 26, 2001, 20:30 (10 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bryan Sparks)

[ Thanks to Myddrin for this link. ]

Lineo was one of the companies quick to respond to the Mundie "shared source speech," and its CEO, Bryan Sparks, follows up with a more thorough defense of the GPL, addressing the frequent complaints about its "viral" nature.

Lineo takes some pride in its "third way," which, while involving unabashed use of proprietary modules riding on top of the kernel, also respects the openness of the software it's building on top of.

"...Challengers of the GPL like to spread fear about its "viral" effect. Yet what they fail to mention is that all software licenses (even the Microsoft Windows license) have the same viral effect as the GPL. The difference between a derivative of Microsoft code and a derivative of GPL code is the final ownership of the code. Microsoft code and derivatives assuredly go back to Microsoft and possibly benefit them with profits.

GPL code and derivatives go back to the GPL and the public domain and possibly benefit numerous individuals and organizations. This said, the GPL clearly delineates an ability to use GPL code, and future derivatives of that code, without threat of trademark infringement."

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