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Re: Suggestion for dual-licensed LaTeX (was Re: Encoding the name in the file contents (was Re: Towards a new LPPL draft))



>>>>> On Thu, 25 Jul 2002 11:48:37 -0400, Boris Veytsman <borisv@lk.net> said:

>> From: Brian Sniffen <bts@alum.mit.edu>
>> Date: Thu, 25 Jul 2002 11:34:50 -0400

>> 
>> I'd like to suggest a licensing variant for LaTeX which uses a
>> weakened form of the API restrictions discussed earlier.  In its
>> simplest form, this requires distribution of two versions of LaTeX.
>> One is under a no-cost-but-proprietary modification ("OpenLaTeX")
>> similar to the LPPL3, but which allowed code licensed under it to also
>> be used under the terms of the FreeLaTeX license.  The other
>> ("FreeLaTeX") is under a DFSG-free license which:
>> 

> I am not a member of a LaTeX3 team, so I cannot speak for it. I am a
> member of TUG. Let me tell you what I think as a TeX user.

> 1. Your proposition should include not only LaTeX but also TeX since
>    its licensing terms are essentially the same.

The terms of the copy of TeX on my computer appear to be rather
different: it's public domain with a trademarked name, with some GPL'd
extensions.  So I can, for example, embed TeX in another program and
distribute it under the GPL.  I certainly could not do so with LaTeX.

All that's moot, as Knuth seems rather unlikely to change his license,
and it's DFSG-free and compatible with the OpenTeX and FreeTeX ideas I
proposed anyway.

> 2. Over the years TeX Users Group supported many not-quite TeX
>    projects (NTS, etex, pdftex, etc). In all these cases the fork was
>    driven by understandable typesetting needs. You propose a fork
>    driven by ideology.

Yes.  LaTeX is a beautiful program and I use it daily, but I'd rather
go back to pressing a stick into mud than see Trusted Computing take
over.

> 3. While you have a perfect right to create any derivative work as
>    long it is not called TeX, I think that it would be a waste of
>    money and effort for TUG to support it.

I agree.  I hope that doesn't come as a surprise:  my intention is for
TUG to get the best of both worlds here: it has OpenLaTeX (Real LaTeX,
Pristine LaTeX, whatever name you think best) for the work it wants to
do: a perfectly ordered garden.  And for very little cost (writing up
a new license) it has FreeLaTeX: a wild bramble beyond the garden walls, which
usually is just less organized and less useful, but occasionally
produces something worth incorporating into real LaTeX.

> In short: you can create your FreeTeX or whatever you want. Just do
> not assume TeX users community to help you.

I certainly will assume that.  Not *all* of it, of course.  But I'd do
my hacking on the more free version, with the hope that it would be
useful there and to those who need document persistence.

-Brian

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