POV-Ray : Newsgroups : moray.win : Modernize Moray : Re: Modernize Moray Server Time
17 Sep 2021 21:48:42 EDT (-0400)
  Re: Modernize Moray  
From: clipka
Date: 4 Jan 2018 12:41:04
Message: <5a4e6730$1@news.povray.org>
Am 04.01.2018 um 15:18 schrieb Bald Eagle:

> I have a few questions about this, as IP remains very gray and thorny for me.
> 
> There are instances where a work may be cited as an excerpt, may be used for
> parody, etc.   Are there the same / similar  rules for code?
> I believe there are, and I've read some somewhere, I'm just not intimately
> familiar with the rules governing this area.

I bet there's no universally true answer to this question. IP laws
differ a lot between countries, and software may or may not get special
treatment there.

> Second, might it not be expedient to identify the 3rd party snippets and just
> stick in a placeholder comment?
> // this performs an FFT
> // this does some specialized calculation
> // this is code for the well-known Dasblinkenlights algorithm...

That depends on the license under which the original authors of Moray
used such code. Any publication of software (not only in binary form,
but also as source code) requires the copyright holder's permission
(that is, a license); so if the 3rd party did not explicitly allow
publication of their source code, that's not an option.

> Is it permissible to post links to online instances of any such code?

Yes, absolutely -- provided that online instance already constitutes a
publicly accessible copy of that code and is legit (i.e. the "owner" of
that instance has the right to make it publicly available).

> Is it permissible to supply self-encapsulated compiled code to act as a
> black-box that a developer would need to emulate with their own from-scratch
> source code?
> For instance, run some code which passes data to that black-box module, which
> then passes on processed data to a second set of code...

That also depends on the license. By default (i.e. if in doubt), the
answer would be "no".

> Can the 3rd party source be "paraphrased" as pseudo code?

Yes. Unless you live in a country where algorithms /per se/ (as opposed
to implementations thereof) can be subject to copyright. (Dunno if there
are any such countries at all, but they could theoretically exist.)

> I'm just thinking that getting it posted in ANY form would jump-start this, and
> it would be FAR faster to give the 3rd party stuff a quick-and dirty
> non-functional rewrite in one of the above forms, than actually replace it with
> working code.

Actually, the first step would have to be taking inventory: What 3rd
party pieces of code actually do exist at all, and how extensive are
they. Only then does it make sense to discuss how to best tackle the
issue -- if it is any at all. It might turn out that there isn't any 3rd
party code at all, or that all 3rd party code is free software anyway.

Right now, all I'm saying is that this /can/ be a problem, and that for
now the code has to be treated as if it /is/ a problem, until the
contrary has been proven beyond reasonable doubt.


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