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Legal

Remix OS GPL Violations and More Android Leftovers

Filed under
Android
GNU
Legal

FSF/GNU/GPL

Filed under
GNU
Legal
  • The Future of the Free Software Foundation: Your Input Requested

    Addressing questions about the Free Software Foundation (FSF)'s future direction seems long overdue. For that reason, the FSF's current online survey seems a step in the right direction.

    In many ways, the survey is a necessity. Although the FSF regularly tackles too many major issues to count, its entire operating budget for 2013 was $1,250,498, approximately five percent of the budget for the more corporate-oriented Linux Foundation during the same year. Under such budget restraints, some selection seems inevitable if the FSF is to avoid spreading itself too thin.

  • Friday Free Software Directory IRC meetup: January 15th
  • Qt Does Some Licensing Changes

    Qt will be introducing a "start-up license" to help small companies make use of the Qt tool-kit for commercial desktop and mobile applications. The Qt open-source licenses have also now been updated.

  • Qt is Guaranteed to Stay Free and Open – Legal Update

    The KDE Free Qt Foundation already played an important role when Nokia bought Trolltech, the original company behind Qt, and later sold Qt to Digia, which then founded The Qt Company. The contracts are carefully worded to stay valid in cases of acquisitions, mergers or bankruptcy. The history of the past 17 years has shown how well the legal set-up protects the freedom of Qt – and will continue to protect it in the future.

Qt open source licensing changed and product structure updated to strengthen community and extend adoption

Filed under
Development
KDE
Software
Legal

The Qt Company has announced changes to the open source licensing and product structure of the Qt cross-platform application development framework that will further strengthen the Qt community and make additional functionality available to software developers using the open source license. A new “start-up” license has also been announced that will help small businesses that want to utilize Qt in commercial desktop and mobile applications.

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Top 10 open source legal developments in 2015

Filed under
GNU
OSS
Legal

In 2015 there were a variety of legal issues of importance to the FOSS (free and open source) community.

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Shining a spotlight on free software: the FSF's Licensing & Compliance Lab's interview series

Filed under
GNU
Interviews
Legal

In August of 2012, the Licensing & Compliance Lab kicked off a series of interviews with developers of free software. With 2015 in the rear-view mirror, we take a moment to look back on the series and highlight these great projects once again.

In August of 2012, the Licensing & Compliance Lab kicked off a series of interviews with developers of free software. These interviews were a chance to highlight cool free software projects, especially those using copyleft licenses, and learn more about why they are dedicated to free software. What started as a single interview has grown into a regular feature of the Licensing & Compliance Lab blog. With 2015 in the rear-view mirror, we take a moment to look back on the series and highlight these great projects once again.

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Law schools lag behind on open source law

Filed under
OSS
Legal

Many organizations use at least some open source code within their programs. So it is surprising that recent graduates who work with companies using open source software are usually ill prepared (or not prepared at all) to deal with open source legal issues. However, it is not the attorneys’ fault.

Open source legal training is not easy to find, and if available it is not cheap. In the Bay Area, some law schools support an "open movement" policy. For example, some of them create and promote their own commons, meaning that the journals' articles are uploaded and distributed for free online. The schools' open access policies allow attorneys to stay up-­to-­date on their education, without the stress of paying for a subscription. (See SCU commons and UC Hastings.)

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Also: Why I'm not using your open source project

A referendum on GPL enforcement

Filed under
GNU
Legal

One of the key provisions of the GNU General Public License (GPL) is that derivative products must also be released under the GPL. A great many companies rigorously follow the terms of the license, while others avoid GPL-licensed software altogether because they are unwilling to follow those terms. Some companies, though, seem to feel that the terms of the GPL do not apply to them, presenting the copyright holder with two alternatives: find a way to get those companies to change their behavior, or allow the terms of the license to be flouted. In recent times, little effort has gone into the first option; depending on the results of an ongoing fundraising campaign, that effort may drop to nearly zero. We would appear to be at a decision point with regard to how (and whether) we would like to see GPL enforcement done within our community.

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German court addresses GPLv3 section 8 termination provisions

Filed under
OSS
Legal

GPLv2, first published in 1991, provides for automatic termination of the license in the event of violation, with no stated opportunity for cure. By the time of the drafting of GPLv3, the Free Software Foundation, steward of the GPL license family, had come to consider automatic termination to be an unduly harsh policy. GPLv3, introduced in 2007, formally retained automatic termination in its section 8 but moderated it in certain ways, including by providing for automatic reinstatement of the license for first-time GPLv3 violators who cure the violation prior to 30 days after receiving notice from the copyright holder. The precise wording of section 8 was drafted with German preliminary injunction procedure in mind.

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FOSS projects and their legal structures

Filed under
OSS
Legal

Free Software has been growing pretty much everywhere around the world, and so much so that we now face challenges nobody would have thought possible even ten years ago. One of these unexpected issues is the need for proper legal structures. Traditionally, only a handful of entities used to exist. They could be dedicated to one, large project or act as a hub for a “forge” or a set of more or less related projects: that’s the case with the Eclipse or the Apache Software Foundation. Others were one of kind: Software In the Public interest, SPI, is handling funds for large and small projects and has been doing so for well over 15 years. The Free Software Foundation both directly and through the Free Software Conservancy has also hosted many FOSS projects developments, infrastructure and financial resources.

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Leftovers: FSF/GNU

Filed under
GNU
Legal
  • Fighting For Social Justice Is a Major Contribution to Society

    I have something to say that I'm sure everyone is going to consider controversial. I've been meaning to say it for some time, and I realize that it's going to get some annoyance from all sides of this debate. Conservancy may lose Supporters over this, even though this is my personal blog and my personal opinion, and views expressed here aren't necessarily Conservancy's views. I've actually been meaning to write this publicly for a year. I just have to say it now, because there's yet another event on this issue caused yet another a war of words in our community.

  • Software Freedom Conservancy needs your support!

    Last August, Debian and Conservancy announced a partnership and formed the Copyright Aggregation Project where, among other things, Conservancy will be able to hold copyrights for some Debian works and ensure compliance with copyleft so that those works remain in free software.

  • The Free Software Foundation Updates Its Gift Giving Guide
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More in Tux Machines

Linux Graphics

  • X.Org Server 1.18.4 Brings over 60 Improvements to GNU/Linux Operating Systems
    A new maintenance update of the X.Org Server 1.18 display server software for GNU/Linux operating systems, version 1.18.4, has arrived with over 60 improvements. As usual, Adam Jackson was the one to make the announcement, and it looks like X.Org Server 1.18.4 comes approximately three and a half months after the release of the previous maintenance version, X.Org Server 1.18.3, promising to add lots of backports from the devel branch, primarily in XWayland, Glamor, and Kernel Mode Setting (KMS). However, looking at the internal changelog, we can notice that X.Org Server 1.18.4 introduces improvements for several other drivers and components, including, but not limited to, XQuartz, RandR, x86emu, XFree86, KDrive, xf86Crtc, EXA, GLX, DIX/PTraccel, XKB, as well as Xi.
  • Igalia's Work On The Intel Mesa Driver The Past Year
  • DRM Text Mode Proposed As Alternative To FBDEV/FBCON
    There's long been talk on killing FBDEV and getting rid of CONFIG_VT with a modern replacement making more use of DRM/KMS drivers, but so far none of those efforts have fully panned out.

Linux Foundation and Linux

  • Telco central offices could be in for open source makeover
    The CORD Summit, hosted by the Open Networking Lab (On.Lab) and The Linux Foundation, promotes the use of technologies such as Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), software-defined networking (SDN) and the cloud "to bring datacenter economics and cloud agility to service providers' Central Office." CORD is kind of an acronym for Central Office Re-architected as a Datacenter, and is designed to benefit enterprise, residential and wireless networks. A mini version of this event was held in March as part of the broader Open Networking Summit.
  • Some of The Other Pull Requests Arriving For Linux 4.8 This Week
    I've already written more than a dozen various bits of information about the Linux 4.8 kernel this week covering the big pull requests / subsystem updates.
  • More Last Minute AMDGPU/Radeon Changes For Linux 4.8
    There already have been the main pull requests for the AMDGPU/Radeon DRM drivers for DRM-Next that in turn will land in Linux 4.8 next week.
  • Linux Kernel 3.14.74 LTS Has Updated Drivers, ARM, MIPS and x86 Improvements
    After informing the community about the availability of the Linux 4.6.5 and Linux 4.4.16 LTS kernel versions for GNU/Linux operating systems, Greg Kroah-Hartman published details about the seventy-fourth maintenance update for Linux 3.14 LTS.

Debian News

  • Contributing with Debian Recommendation System
    Hi, my name is Luciano Prestes, I am participating in the program Google Summer of Code (GSoC), my mentor is Antonio Terceiro, and my co-mentor is Tassia Camoes, both are Debian Developers. The project that I am contributing is the AppRecommender, which is a package recommender for Debian systems, my goal is to add a new strategy of recommendation to AppRecommender, to make it recommend packages after the user installs a new package with 'apt'. At principle AppRecommender has three recommendation strategies, being them, content-based, collaborative and hybrid. To my work on GSoC this text explains two of these strategies, content-based and collaborative. Content-based strategy get the user packages and analyzes yours descriptions to find another Debian packages that they are similar to the user packages, so AppRecommender uses the content of user packages to recommender similar packages to user. The collaborative strategy compare the user packages with the packages of another users, and then recommends packages that users with similar profile have, where a profile of user is your packages. On her work, Tassia Camoes uses the popularity-contest data to compare the users profiles on the collaborative strategy, the popularity-contest is an application that get the users packages into a submission and send to the popularity-contest server and generates statistical data analyzing the users packages.
  • Looking for the artwork for the next Debian release
    Each release of Debian has a shiny new theme, which is visible on the boot screen, the login screen and, most prominently, on the desktop wallpaper. Debian plans to release Stretch next year. As ever, we need your help in creating its theme! You have the opportunity to design a theme that will inspire thousands of people while working in their Debian systems.
  • SteamOS 2.87 Arrives with Support for Nvidia GTX 1080/1070, AMD "Bonaire" GPUs
    Today, July 29, 2016, Valve announced the availability for download of a new stable version of its Debian-based GNU/Linux operating system designed for gaming, SteamOS 2.87. After being in the Beta stages of the development for the past two months, SteamOS 2.87 is now the latest stable and most advanced version of the gaming OS developed by Valve for personal computers and Steam Machines. It comes as a replacement for the previous stable release, SteamOS 2.70, announced back in April 2016. Prominent new features of SteamOS 2.87 include the availability of updated Nvidia and AMD Radeon graphics drivers, version 367.27 and AMDGPU-PRO 16.30 respectively, which now offer support for the recently announced Nvidia GTX 1080 and GTX 1070 GPUs, as well as for the "Bonaire" GPUs.

Ubuntu Leftovers

  • Willing To Experience Linux? Try Ubuntu Demo Right Now In Your Browser
    If you are new to the world of Linux, you might not be knowing about online Ubuntu Linux demo website. If you are planning to make a switch to Linux, you can head over to this website and get familiar with Ubuntu Linux.
  • Ubuntu Touch takes a huge step towards Convergence in OTA-12
    Ubuntu has a very ambitious goal with Ubuntu Touch. It proposed an operating system that could work equally on any capable device, a smartphone that can truly be your computer, no holds barred. That was the promise of Convergence, which we took for a spin with the Meizu PRO 5 smartphone and, before that, the bq Aquaris M10 tablet. The results back then where disappointing yet promising. Ubuntu Touch, as it was when we reviewed these devices, still lacked that punch that would make you truly go "wow!". But, unlike other operating systems, Ubuntu is fast evolving, and the latest OTA-12 brings much needed improvements to bring us closer to true Convergence.
  • Yakkety Yak Alpha 2 Released
  • [Mint] Monthly News – July 2016