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Re: Is javacc DFSG compliant?

Raul Miller <moth@debian.org> writes:

>> Ken Arromdee <arromdee@rahul.net> writes:
>> > Consider this hypothetical: I want to use the software in a nuclear power
>> > plant.  My lawyers advise me not to make the acknowledgement, because doing
>> > so might make it harder to later take Sun to court if I have to.  I refuse
>> > to acknowledge that the software is not intended for nuclear plants, but I
>> > copy and use the software anyway.  Am I now in violation of the license?
> On Wed, Oct 13, 2004 at 12:57:57PM -0400, Brian Thomas Sniffen wrote:
>> Your lawyers are insane.
> Cite?

You're considering using unproven, uncertified software running in a
JVM to operate an unlicensed nuclear power plant, and your lawyers'
biggest problem is that you might have acknowleged that the software
isn't meant for that?

>> It's illegal to use this software in nuclear power plants.
> That's for a judge to determine.
> It's illegal in the context of copyrights to make copies for
> use in nuclear power plants (which conflicts with the fields
> of endeavor part of the DFSG).

No, it isn't.  It doesn't say you can't do so -- just that you've
acknowledged that the software isn't licensed-by-the-DOE for that or
designed for that.

>> But the fact that it isn't designed for use in a nuke is *true*.
> It's not designed for use on a cucumber farm, either.  Does that make
> it illegal to use on a cuke?

Wha?  No, but so what?

> Let's say someone was seriously intending to use this software in a
> nuclear power plant.  Let's say that Sun wouldn't provide acceptable
> alternate licensing.  Let's also say that the people involved in this
> plan are responsible and either [a] are using it in contexts where
> failure of the system isn't a critical issue, or [b] are first having
> a team of programmers go over the relevant code to certify that it will
> perform as needed.

OK.  Let's say all of that.  Then these people can still acknowledge
that the software isn't designed by Sun or licensed by the DOE for
this use, then go get the DOE license.  No problem.

>> I don't see any fee or other non-free requirement in silent and private
>> acknowledgement of true facts.
> I don't either.
>> > I know that "you must acknowledge that" doesn't mean you need to mail Sun a
>> > written statement bearing an acknowledgement, but I don't think that makes a
>> > difference.  Would a license "you must acknowledge that Jesus is
>> > Lord" be free?
>> That's not provably true.  Sun, being the designer of the software,
>> can make unambiguously true statements about the design.
> Which shouldn't have anything to do with how the software is used,
> unless the software is non-free.

They aren't making statements about its use, but about their purposes
in designing it and certain regulatory processes in which they have
not engaged.

Brian Sniffen                                       bts@alum.mit.edu

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