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Re: transformations of 'source code'

On Fri, Mar 07, 2003 at 05:36:57PM -0500, Joe Moore wrote:

> > Basically the forms can be judged according to their purpose. The source
> > form is the preferred form for making modifications. The object form is
> > the form suitable for use in the intended function of the work, and an
> > "encoded or translated" form which retains the meaning of the original
> > source (i.e. it is still sufficient to achieve the object of the
> > original source) should be OK to distribute, provided that the
> > translation or encoding is reversible.

> Unfortunately, intent is one of the hardest things to prove in court.

Nevertheless, it's the most important metric for many of the edge cases
under consideration.  Questions of intent can only be resolved with
difficulty, and it's possible a judge may come to the wrong conclusion;
but I think any other framing of the requirement results in a license
that would in some cases *require* a judge to find for the "wrong" party.

> > Non-reversible (i.e. obfuscated or encrypted in such a way that the
> > recipient cannot recover useful source) should not be allowed

> I think the key there is _useful_ source.  Obfuscated forms that can not
> be turned back into useful source should not be allowed.  Encypted forms
> (if the recipient doesn't have the key) don't give useful source.

Useful to whom?  If you say "useful", what stops someone from suing
because "it's not useful to me: it's written in C and I don't understand

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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