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Re: Illustrating JVM bindings

On Fri, 14 Jan 2005 22:12:56 +0000, Andrew Suffield
<asuffield@debian.org> wrote:
> Some of those python scripts may be derivatives of GNU readline. Most
> are probably not. Those that are must be licensed under the GPL. The
> rest do not have to be. All this interpreter crud in between is
> *irrelevant*. If the same program written in C would be a derivative
> then it's still a derivative even when you insert an interpreter in
> the middle.

I agree completely with Andrew here.  I also think that "linking crud"
is every bit as irrelevant as "interpreter crud".

Plagiarize the expressive content of code, you've created a derivative
work.  Hence, when I ripped out the internals of a GPL RSA
implementation that used a bignum library that turned out to be
non-free, replacing every line of the code with implementation against
a different (free) bignum, the result was infringing not because it
had the same API (that's functional, and hence not protectable under
copyright) but because I retained not just the ideas but the style and
flow of the original.  (It's released as GPL, of course.)

But a separate work using that implementation, whether bound to an
interpreted OCaml interface, the same OCaml interface compiled to
bytecode or native code, a dynamically linked C interface, a
statically linked C interface, or a hypothetical template-based C++
interface that flows everything together in the preprocessing stage,
just isn't a derivative work under copyright law.

- Michael

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