Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 13th Jun 2006 22:16 UTC
GNU, GPL, Open Source It's time for the Windows and Linux communities to drop the religious war and get together in a hurry to put the strengths of each operating system to best use, according to a nationally recognized authority on Windows Server. At the same time, Microsoft has been reaching out to the open-source community to try to find ways to overcome the incompatibilities between software distributed under the GNU General Public License and its own commercial software.
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copyright does not protect algorithms
by JoeBuck on Wed 14th Jun 2006 00:34 UTC
JoeBuck
Member since:
2006-01-11

Only trade secrets or patents can restrict use of algorithms. Microsoft is free to ask engineer A to analyze a GPL program and produce a report describing the algorithm, and then have engineer B produce a compatible program from the report.

Furthermore it isn't true that a software engineer can work only on GPL code or only on proprietary code but not both. He or she can't copy code from one to the other, true, but this can be avoided without trouble. And there's nothing special about the GPL in that regard; copying code from a textbook without permission is another way that proprietary software houses can get in trouble.

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