[Mono-list] The license problem

Ulf Ochsenfahrt ulfjack@gmx.de
Fri, 24 May 2002 08:40:53 +0200 (MEST)

I've been following this list (and this thread) for some time now. I am not
sure but I think one thing has been missed in this discussion.

The GPL covers source code, right?

Linking with a GPLd something (like gcc, for example) is not allowed if
you're not making it GPL because you use some of the GPLd source code.

BUT, using source code is not strictly necessary with object-oriented code.

Imagine the following:
You have
a) an Interface that specifies the methods and functionalities you can
access, this Interface is NOT GPL
b) a Programm linked to that Interface, no GPL
c) a new Object that implements this Interface, e.g. a gcc compiler, that
uses GPLd source code

The Programm cannot be possibly infected by the GPL since it was never
intended to be written for this object and none of the GPLed source code was used
at all.

Let's take a different example:
3D Max has an interface allowing anyone to write plugins, now if you write a
plugin that is GPLed, 3D Max cannot be infected by that. (The only question
here may be: Are you allowed to write a GPLed plugin?)

If this "CodeDOM/Compiler/whatever"-stuff only specifies the interfaces it
does not matter if there is really a GPLd object that provides the
functionality at runtime.

-- Ulf

GMX - Die Kommunikationsplattform im Internet.