Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 2nd May 2012 22:32 UTC, submitted by PLan
Legal "The European Court of Justice ruled on Wednesday that application programming interfaces and other functional characteristics of computer software are not eligible for copyright protection. Users have the right to examine computer software in order to clone its functionality - and vendors cannot override these user rights with a license agreement, the court said." Bravo. A landmark ruling, for sure. If the US courts decide in favour of Oracle in the Google-Oracle case, Europe would instantly become an even friendlier place for technology companies.
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MollyC
Member since:
2006-07-04

In C++, one can write the entire code for a library in .h files by implementing class methods directly in the class definition. .h files can also have stand alone inline functions, templates, and macros, all of which implement functionality rather than merely declare an interface to the functionality. Indeed, there are so-called "template libraries" where the "library" is just a bunch of .h files that implement templates, and there's no compiled binary at all. All of these things are actual implementation code, rather than just being function prototypes, and are indeed copyrightable. So it's wrong to declare that .h files are not copyrightable.

Beyond that, open any Win32 .h file, and you'll see "Microsoft copyright 2012" statement at the top (or something like that). Open a GPL .h file and you'll see the GPL boilerplate copyright info at the top. Even if the file only contains function prototypes. .h files have always been copyrightable.

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