[AstroPy] message from SOFA chair

Perry Greenfield stsci.perry@gmail....
Fri Jun 14 12:17:12 CDT 2013


Neither do I, neither do I. 

On Jun 14, 2013, at 12:59 PM, Scott Ransom wrote:

> Yeah.  They won't budge on the license issue -- and I tried.
> 
> They are absolutely convinced that they need an IAU "reference" 
> implementation of many of these algorithms that noone can change.  But 
> they are fine taking the same code, stripping "SOFA" and/or "IAU" off 
> the routine names, and re-licensing it in a free fashion even if that 
> means that noone uses their (original) code.  I have to admit that I 
> don't understand the logic....
> 
> Scott
> 
> On 06/14/2013 12:12 PM, Perry Greenfield wrote:
>> Yes, as a matter of fact, today we got explicit permission from the Board to relicense SOFA. That will require us to release it under a different name, and using a different prefix for the routine names. You should be hearing about it soon. But they will not be changing their license.
>> 
>> Perry
>> 
>> On Jun 14, 2013, at 12:06 PM, Sergio Pascual wrote:
>> 
>>> Hello,
>>> 
>>> is there any progress in this topic? I have checked today and the license text in the SOFA webpage remains the same.
>>> 
>>> Sergio
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 2013/5/7 Thomas Robitaille <thomas.robitaille@gmail.com>
>>> Just for information, we are currently working towards a solution
>>> off-list with the SOFA board, and will inform the list once things
>>> have been settled. So no need to propose a license text at this stage.
>>> 
>>> Tom
>>> 
>>> On 7 May 2013 17:15, Wolfgang Kerzendorf <wkerzendorf@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> I think what Mario and Tim are proposing is very good as it would alleviate
>>>> the problems mentioned by Catherine. To speed up the process, we should
>>>> propose a license text and they could then see if that meets their criteria
>>>> (make it as hard as possible for them to delay or refuse).
>>>> 
>>>> Cheers
>>>>     Wolfgang
>>>> On 2013-05-07, at 10:45 AM, Tim Jenness <tim.jenness@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>> Thanks.
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> On Tue, May 7, 2013 at 3:34 AM, Scott Ransom <sransom@nrao.edu> wrote:
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> On the subject of the SOFA license conditions, our Board member Patrick
>>>>> Wallace is continuing discussions he had on this topic last year, which
>>>>> resulted in changes to the license that enabled the Debian release to
>>>>> proceed.  Recent emails, which unfortunately were delayed by the spam
>>>>> filter problems, show that further discussion is needed, and Patrick is
>>>>> now in touch with Perry Greenfield, STScI Science Software Branch lead.
>>>>> The nub of the problem is that SOFA software has to address two
>>>>> conflicting requirements: (i) the insistence by free software groups
>>>>> that users should not be constrained in any way and (ii) the need to
>>>>> prevent "counterfeit" versions coming into circulation.  The second
>>>>> point is vital because SOFA software represents IAU standards and indeed
>>>>> is cited in other standards such as IERS Conventions.
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> Regarding the counterfeit argument, isn't this very similar to encryption
>>>> libraries where you want to make sure that you are using the official
>>>> library and not one you found on the internet that happens to have a back
>>>> door? OpenSSL and other libraries deal with this. People are far more
>>>> concerned about using the proper OpenSSL than using SOFA but the underlying
>>>> principal is the same. OpenSSL has a very straightforward licence
>>>> (http://www.openssl.org/source/license.html) which has clearly been approved
>>>> for distribution.
>>>> 
>>>> --
>>>> Tim Jenness
>>>> CCAT Software Manager
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>>>> 
>>>> 
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> 
> -- 
> Scott M. Ransom            Address:  NRAO
> Phone:  (434) 296-0320               520 Edgemont Rd.
> email:  sransom@nrao.edu             Charlottesville, VA 22903 USA
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