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Archived Free and Open Source S/W Articles
30 Aug 2012
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Licensing Open Source Code in the Modern, Post-revolutionary Era [27421]
Cantrill Maintains GPLv2's Days are Numbered

Peace reigns in the open source arena, Bryan Cantrill maintains in his post on the need to move from GPLv2 licensing to the more open-source friendly MPLv2. The experience of VLC, which recently relicensed its core software to LGPLv2 to allow it, as Cantrill writes, " ... to be more readily shared with other projects," bears this out, he explains. A new generation of developers are convinced that open source has won the battle with proprietary software. There was general agreement with his position at Forum Internacional Software Livre in Brazil, where he first voiced his thoughts.
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15 Aug 2012
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Proprietary Vendors Finding Open Source Development an Attractive Course [27239]
VMware and Microsoft Are Prime Examples

In the recent corporate behavior of VMware and even Microsoft, Jay Lyman, writing in LinuxInsider, finds a more accepting stance toward free and open source software in the proprietary community. These proprietary stalwarts, and others, says Lyman," ... talk bullishly about their integration with, contribution to, and support for open source software, which is a far cry from belittling open source as a hobby or demonizing it as not enterprise-ready." For all of that, he concludes, there remains a marked difference between VMware, for example, and Red Hat, which has been, and remains, solely open source from the start.
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09 Jul 2012
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What's the Truth about Open Source [26846]
Sorting out the True from the False in Current Thinking

On mission to dispel (or confirm) some of the current myths concerning open source, Wenjia Zhao of Forbes tackles the subject with sufficient candor to admit his own level of misinformation. Zhao consulted Karl Fogel of Open Souce Initiative, to whom he put these questions:

  • Open source means that the source is open to view
  • Open source software is free
  • Open source software cannot be commercial
  • Open source software is crowd-sourced and vice versa

Fogel confirmed that one of the "myths" is true, the other three false. Test your open source belief system against the expert.
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05 Jul 2012
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Downloads of Apache OpenOffice 3.4.0 Soar [26785]
More than 5 million in a Mere Six Weeks

Within six weeks of its release, downloads of Apache 3.4.0 Open Office have exceeded five million, LinuxBSDos.com reports, phenomenal for software that is no longer installed by default on Linux distros. Apache Open Office is the renamed LibreOffice, LiuxBSDos.com reminds readers, and was the first version released since it became an Apache Software Foundation (ASF) incubating project., and coding continues on 3.4.1, scheduled for release in late July. Following the release of 3.4.1, ASF is contemplating either a slower, more incremental merge of Symphony enhancements into OpenOffice, or a more rapid rebasing of OpenOffice on top of Symphony.
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18 Jun 2012
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The Defensive Patent License [26655]
Keeping Patents Out of Court

Simon Phipps celebrates the introduction of the Defensive Patent License (DPL) by two UC Berkeley Law School professors, Jason Schultz and Jennifer Urban. DPL was developed to counter what Phipps describes as the commoditization of patents by the venture capital industry, which enabled investors to capitalize on salable patents of a failed enterprise. DPL requires that a company agree never to use patents offensively against other signatories of the DPL, thereby rendering all patents owned by all DPL signatories "de-weaponized," as Phipps puts it. Key to the success of this proposal is the breadth of adoption by patent owners.
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11 Jun 2012
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Make Sure Your Company's Procurement Policies Are Not Restricting FOSS Adoptions [26597]
The Community does not Require the Indemnification Protections Proprietary Vendors Seek

Indemnification should not be an issue in the procurement of open source software, writes Simon Phipps, who advises IT administrators to examine their procurement policies to determine whether they contains stipulations that might inhibit the adoption of open source solutions. The open source community does not have the same stake in such matters as source code protection or right-to-use issues as a proprietary vendor and, therefore, the protections necessary in dealing with vendors of proprietary solutions need not apply when open source is the choice.
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