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Re: TeX Licenses & teTeX (Was: Re: forwarded message from Jeff Licquia)

> From: tb@becket.net (Thomas Bushnell, BSG)
> Date: 08 Aug 2002 12:19:03 -0700

> > accepted them *includes* a guy named Donald Knuth. You want the right
> > to interpret DFSG; don't you think Knuth deserves the right ot have a
> > say in interpretation of his license?
> Of course.  But he must actually pick on interpretation and stick with
> it.  Moreover, when he says "what I want to get", that is not some
> kind of extension of the license.  There are many things I want that I
> don't put in my licenses, and that is clearly the case with Knuth as
> well.

Do you want to say the following: "Knuth wanted to make TeX non-free,
but due to loopholes in his license it is actually free. Since LaTeX
guys want to make their licnese clear and unambigous, their license is

This opinion has a certian logic in it, I would say.

> No, that doesn't make the CM fonts part of TeX.  If I get tex.web, I
> don't necessarily get the CM fonts, and moreover, I can use plain.tex
> without the CM fonts at all!

Thomas, this statement is wrong. Try deleting the file cmr10.tfm and
calling tex -- you will see TeX calls metafont to recreate this file
BEFORE it reads the first line of your document, and does not proceed
until this file is generated. Surely, you can make a drop-in
replacement of cmr10.tfm. My contention is that this will change
TeX-the-system. The definitive TeX guide -- Knuth's The TeX Book --
describes CM as an integral part of TeX. I am not a lawyer, but I were
subpoenaed to a court as an expert witness, I would tell under oath
that CM fonts ARE a part of TeX(TM) and show The TeX Book as a proof
of this. Therefore your drop-in replacement without changing the name
of TeX is violation of license, and no amount of word juggling will
ever change this.

Good luck


It is not good for a man to be without knowledge,
and he who makes haste with his feet misses his way.
		-- Proverbs 19:2

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