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The Boring Licences


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Free/Open Software Licences are boring but necessary and annoying. This is an attempt to give a gentle introduction to these licences.

Presentation in Software Freedom Day 2010 Hong Kong

Published in: Technology
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The Boring Licences

  1. 1. The Boring Licences Why Should We Care? Prepared and Presented by Haggen Released under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong Licence
  2. 2. Case 1: How much can a book publisher Copy illegally from the Web?
  3. 3. Obvious Answer: The Whole Book Latest Example: Allegedly > 100 Photos
  4. 4. Case 1 Links
  5. 5. Case 2: Is Free/Open Source Licences Enforceable?
  6. 6. GPL was upheld against D-Link in a German Court Westinghouse Digital Electronics needed to Pay in damages for willful infringement of GPL
  7. 7. History of Software
  8. 8. Apple ][+ Clone
  9. 9. Changes in Computer Industry • Rise of Personal Computers • Widening of Market – Horizontal Market Possible • Secrecy and Profitability – Closed Source
  10. 10. Source Code • Computer Instructions are coded in binary format 00101... • A more human friendly method to program computer: /* Hello World program */ #include<stdio.h> main() { printf("Hello World"); } • Convert source code into binary instructions by a computer compiler
  11. 11. Richard M. Stallman
  12. 12. Responses of Richard Stallman • Release source code that could not be used commercially • Release source code that must remain freely available -> Software Freedom • 1983 GNU project, Unix Clone • 1985 Free Software Foundation, Free as in Free Speech, General Public License (GPL)
  13. 13. Free Software • The freedom to run the program, for any purpose (freedom 0). • The freedom to study how the program works, and change it to make it do what you wish (freedom 1). Access to the source code is a precondition for this.
  14. 14. Free Software • The freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor (freedom 2). • The freedom to improve the program, and release your improvements (and modified versions in general) to the public, so that the whole community benefits (freedom 3). Access to the source code is a precondition for this.
  15. 15. General Public License (GPL) • One of the implementations of the 4 Freedom • Most used Free/Open Source License • Contract based on Copyright • For Libraries - Lesser General Publice License
  16. 16. Creative Commons Licences • For General Copyrighted Works • Contract based on Copyright • 4 Elements for different control on Openness • 6 Different Licences
  17. 17. Attribution 署名 Non-Commercial 非商業性 No Derivative Works 禁止衍生 Share Alike 相同方式共享 Licence Elements
  18. 18. Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives (by-nc-nd) Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike (by-nc-sa) Attribution Non-commercial (by-nc) Attribution No Derivatives (by-nd) Attribution Share Alike (by-sa) Attribution (by) 6 variations The Licences
  19. 19. To Conclude • How to Promote? • Example – Clinic Management System
  20. 20. Image Credits A-giâu (2005) _II_clone_Cosmo.jpg, released under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Licence.
  21. 21. Image Credits Ferdi (2006) Bull_DPS_7_Mainframe_BWW_March_1990.jpg, released under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Licence., released under Creative Commons Attribution Non- Derivative 3.0 Licence.