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Re: gnuplot license

> From: tb@becket.net (Thomas Bushnell, BSG)
> Date: 16 Dec 2002 22:08:07 -0800

> I'm uncertain how gnuplot got its name...anyone know?


    1.2 How did it come about and why is it called gnuplot?

    The authors of gnuplot are: Thomas Williams, Colin Kelley, Russell
    Lang, Dave Kotz, John Campbell, Gershon Elber, Alexander Woo and
    many others.

    The following quote comes from Thomas Williams: I was taking a
    differential equation class and Colin was taking Electromagnetics,
    we both thought it'd be helpful to visualize the mathematics
    behind them. We were both working as sys admin for an EE VLSI lab,
    so we had the graphics terminals and the time to do some
    coding. The posting was better received than we expected, and
    prompted us to add some, albeit lame, support for file data.

    Any reference to GNUplot is incorrect. The real name of the
    program is "gnuplot". You see people use "gnuplot" quite a bit
    because many of us have an aversion to starting a sentence with a
    lower case letter, even in the case of proper nouns and
    titles. gnuplot is not related to the GNU project or the FSF in
    any but the most peripheral sense. Our software was designed
    completely independently and the name "gnuplot" was actually a
    compromise. I wanted to call it "llamaplot" and Colin wanted to
    call it "nplot." We agreed that "newplot" was acceptable but, we
    then discovered that there was an absolutely ghastly pascal
    program of that name that the Computer Science Dept. occasionally
    used. I decided that "gnuplot" would make a nice pun and after a
    fashion Colin agreed.

    1.3 Does gnuplot have anything to do with the FSF and the GNU

    Gnuplot is neither written nor maintained by the FSF. It is not
    covered by the General Public License, either. It used to be
    distributed by the FSF, however, due to licensing issues it is no

    Gnuplot is freeware in the sense that you don't have to pay for
    it. However it is not freeware in the sense that you would be
    allowed to distribute a modified version of your gnuplot
    freely. Please read and accept the Copyright file in your

Good luck


When I was little, I went into a pet shop and they asked how big I'd get.
		-- Rodney Dangerfield

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