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Re: GPL v3 Draft

Don Armstrong wrote:
> 1. Source Code.
> The "source code" for a work means the preferred form of the work
> for making modifications to it. "Object code" means any non-source
> version of a work.
> The "Complete Corresponding Source Code" for a work in object code form
> means all the source code needed to understand, adapt, modify, compile,
> link, install, and run the work, excluding general-purpose tools used in
> performing those activities but which are not part of the work. For
> example, this includes any scripts used to control those activities, and
> any shared libraries and dynamically linked subprograms that the work is
> designed to require, such as by intimate data communication or control flow
> between those subprograms and other parts of the work, and interface
> definition files associated with the program source files.
> Complete Corresponding Source Code also includes any encryption or
> authorization codes necessary to install and/or execute the source code of
> the work, perhaps modified by you, in the recommended or principal context
> of use, such that its functioning in all circumstances is identical to that
> of the work, except as altered by your modifications. It also includes any
> decryption codes necessary to access or unseal the work's output.

I do not understand the reasoning for this last sentence.  It rules
out writing a script that encrypts a message with a public key and
sends it to the person with the private key.  This could be useful for
secure bug reporting tools.

> Distribution of the Corresponding Source in accord with this section
> must be in a format that is publicly documented, 

This is too broad.  It prevents a large class of formats.  It makes it
impossible for AutoCAD or MS Word users to exchange works under this

> unencumbered by patents, 

It may be difficult to find non-trivial formats which are not
encumbered by patents :(

> and must require no special password or key for unpacking,
> reading or copying.

This is suboptimal.  It is ok to distribute it encrypted, as long as
you get the key as well.  A better wording would be

  If a special password or key is required for unpacking, reading, or
  copying, then that must be provided as well.


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