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Re: Illustrating JVM bindings

Michael K. Edwards wrote:
> On Fri, 14 Jan 2005 22:12:56 +0000, Andrew Suffield
> <asuffield@debian.org> wrote:
> [snip]
>>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".

I agree with this statement as well, but not in the way you have argued.
 "Linking crud" is irrelevant in that it does not in and of itself
define whether something is derivative or not (leaving aside any issues
of inlines and other code included in a compiled binary).  Many cases of
"A links to B" have A as a derivative work of B, while others do not,
and in neither case is the mere fact that A links against B a relevant
factor in the decision; it is simply a quick shortcut to guess that
something may be a derived work.  For example, it is quite arguable that
a program written today against the readline API is not a derived work
of either readline or editline, because of the existence of both,
assuming it was intended to be usable on both.  Similarly, a program
written in ANSI C is certainly not a derivative of glibc or any other C
library.  On the other hand, a program written againt a unique GPLed
library, with no other implementation, is almost certainly a derivative
work of that library: you are combining two expressive and copyrightable
works into a new whole which is greater than either.

- Josh Triplett

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