[SciPy-dev] talkbox scikit

Bruce Southey bsouthey@gmail....
Tue Mar 3 13:33:05 CST 2009

David Cournapeau wrote:
> Georg Holzmann wrote:
>> hm, I can of course change the interface (and don't mention the author 
>> of the code, just the author of the paper) - but that sounds somehow 
>> silly to me ...
> Again, IANAL, but I don't think it changes anything at this point
> (changing the interface or not). GPL says that any derivative work that
> you distribute must be GPL itself. Something with the same API and
> "somewhat" similar may well qualify as derivative work.
> This is annoying, but we have to be careful with those 'rules' - that's
> the only reason why we cannot use things like the gsl, or R code, even
> though those codebases are potentially very useful to us (and ours to
> them, maybe).
>> OK - I will. But is it enough if I write him a mail if that is ok and he 
>> says yes ?
> >From a "moral" POV, it is enough for me - I have done exactly this in
> the past. Since the code is open source, I think asking for permission
> is a kind of "minimal decency".
> cheers,
> David
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Ideally you should have a provided a clean room implementation. In any 
case you have to be very careful here if you have actually viewed the 
code licensed under the GPL because in part it may imply acceptance of 
the license (EULA conditions). But I agree that it far better to ask for 
permission and see what happens. You might even be able to create a 
better product.

You might find the various resources provide by Software Freedom Law 
Center at

 'A Practical Guide to GPL Compliance'
'Maintaining Permissive-Licensed Files in a GPL-Licensed Project: 
Guidelines for Developers'


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