Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

The state of open source: Bruce Perens, Open Source Definition

Filed under
Interviews
OSS

Bruce Perens, a longtime leader in the open source movement, is rarely remiss in speaking his mind on open source matters. Here's how Perens breaks down the key opportunities and challenges for open source in the years to come.

What do you see as the most pressing challenges and opportunities for open source given the current tech climate?

The biggest problem facing open source, and software in general, is software patenting. Copyright is sufficient to protect the proprietary software folks, but they are threatened by software patents, too, as you can see from all of the court cases reported about them. As the situation exists today, it's very easy to get a software patent for something that isn't really an invention at all. What happens to the companies that have to defend themselves from an unjustly granted software patent? It can easily cost them US$7 million in legal fees to win -- that figure is from the American Intellectual Property Law Association's Economic Survey. That's bigger than the entire funding of most startups and many ongoing concerns. So winning isn't economically viable for them, and their only real choice is to settle for whatever the plaintiff wants, whether there is any justice to that or not.

It is not possible today for a nontrivial program to be noninfringing on software patents granted in the US.

More Here




More in Tux Machines

Today in Techrights

Windows 10: is it finally time to migrate to Ubuntu?

Ubuntu continues to grow in popularity, not only with mainstream consumers, but also with Fortune 500 companies. Moreover, government and top notch education entities across the globe have realized they can save millions of USD, and invest funds more prudently for social programmes. Read more

LibreOffice 5.0.1 Turns a Great Release into an Excellent One

The Document Foundation has just revealed that LibreOffice 5.0.1 has been released, making this the first maintenance version for the new generation of the famous office suite. Read more

Ubuntu: Wily Werewolf Beta 1 Released

The first beta of the Wily Werewolf (to become 15.10) has now been released! This beta features images for Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu GNOME, Ubuntu Kylin, Ubuntu MATE, Xubuntu and the Ubuntu Cloud images. Pre-releases of the Wily Werewolf are *not* encouraged for anyone needing a stable system or anyone who is not comfortable running into occasional, even frequent breakage. They are, however, recommended for Ubuntu flavor developers and those who want to help in testing, reporting and fixing bugs as we work towards getting this release ready. Read more