GPL Project Watch List for Week of 05/16


3716189311_4b4bd88902The GPL v3 Watch List is intended to give you a snapshot of the GPLv3/LGPLv3 adoption for May 2nd through May 16th, 2008.


This day in 1822, the Turks defeated the Greeks in the Greek War of Independence. 

For those of you who track our numbers carefully, you will have noticed the large jump in projects over the last couple days. That was partly from the completion of the changes as well as from inputting two weeks of data. We missed last weeks post due to the maintenance.

As of today, May 16th, our count for the GPL v3 is at 2371 GPL v3 projects. Since our last post, this is 160 new GPL v3 projects, which is the cumulation of over 2 weeks of projects. This matches with our estimate of approximately 50 projects per week. The AGPL v3 is still growing and is at 86 AGPL v3 projects, soon to hit 100 projects. And the LGPL v3 count is now at 219 LGPL v3 projects, up 19 projects since our last posting.

 

This Week:

  • New Projects
  • This Weeks Story: Storage and Computing “on the cloud”
  • See you later! LGPL’s “or later” may be right now at discretion of the user.
  • User Updates

 


New project conversions this week include:

  • eyeEdu: eyeEdu is a web-based desktop (built from the eyeOS project), redesigned for the use of kids. Many applications are included that combine learning and fun, along with an intuitive kid-friendly interface.
  • AsmFile: AsmFile is a small and fast file manager written in assembler. It uses a two pane interface like “mc” and other file managers. AsmFile runs in a console or a terminal window.
  • Quakey: Quackey is a somewhat simplified but mostly feature-complete version of the Perquackey anagram word-building game.

 

Storage and Computing “on the cloud”

“Cloud services” such as online storage and computing resources have become a popular topic recently, with major players like Microsoft, Google and Amazon offering the use of fractions of their respective server farms to users. Amazon’s Web Services ( http://www.amazon.com/webservices ) appears to be the heavyweight so far, offering unlimited computing and storage capacity and no monthly minimum service charges – you pay for what you actually use. However, it is oriented toward developers, not the regular consumer. Amazon’s service is divided into a number of different functions developers might need, such as virtual computing environments, simple database querying, storage and a message queue service. These services are fully operational, not limited beta programs. Google’s App Engine ( http://code.google.com/appengine/) is also available to developers, making Google’s computing infrastructure available to them using Google’s development tools. Google’s App Engine is available only on a limited basis at this time.

A small sub-industry is developing around making developer-oriented resources like Amazon’s available to consumers. Developers of products such as JungleDisk ( http://jungledisk.com/ ) an online backup and storage application, and DropBox ( currently in beta, http://www.getdropbox.com/ ), a content sharing and collaboration tool, write consumer-friendly front-ends to interface with Amazon’s underlying cloud infrastructure.

Consumer-oriented storage services are also available. Microsoft’s SkyDrive ( http://skydrive.live.com/ ), Microsoft’s Live Mesh (coming soon – http://mesh.com/), AOL’s Xdrive ( http://www.xdrive.com/ ) and Yahoo’s Briefcase ( http://briefcase.yahoo.com/ ) are four examples from major players. These services are free, though storage space is limited (SkyDrive – 5GB, Live Mesh – 5GB, Xdrive – 5GB, Briefcase – 30MB) and allow users to upload files directly to the service, almost as if the service were an additional hard drive available to the user.

It will be interesting to see to what extent users and developers are willing to allow a third party store and manage their data and computing processes. One huge benefit to doing so is that users and developers have access to virtually unlimited computing and storage resources, available on-demand, which is paid for as it is used. No need to invest in your own server farm. It is unclear at this point whether any FOSS licensing issues will arise as a result of a user’s local application interfacing with a cloud-based computing resource. For pure storage-type applications there doesn’t appear to be any potential for FOSS licensing conflicts, but it is possible that a cloud-based infrastructure resource that plays a significant role in a tightly integrated computing process including local computing resources may warrant consideration of such licensing issues.

-Kevin Howard

http://blog.jungledisk.com/2008/05/06/another-cloud-storage-provider-enters-the-fray/
http://blogs.sun.com/jonathan/entry/opensolaris_amazon_mysql_and_glassfish



See you later! LGPL’s “or later” may be right now at discretion of the user.

In July of last year, I posted an explanation of the reason that we give such significance to the “or later” option associated to the use of a GPL license. http://gpl3.blogspot.com/2007/07/gplv3-overwhelming-support-if-you-know.html. Matt Asay supported my well researched position on the impact of “or later”. http://www.cnet.com/8301-13505_1-9798242-16.html

While I always want to believe that developers use our research and analysis of FOSS licensing, this is an example that was posted on the site. The biggest issue here is not that JasperReports is available under LGPLv3. the problem is that OSS licensing can be so complex that thinly staffed and over-worked development teams can unintentionally overlook how a license is implemented, the results of which can have unexpected implications.

As of this week, there are 6739 projects with releases licensed under GPL “or later”. While I am sure that a number of these are representative of the support and solidarity that many developers have for FSF and GNU licenses, there may be a large number that are accidentally released under the latest GPL, at the user’s choice.

***************************************************************************************************
Verified against version 2.0.5 on 5/16/08.

From JasperReport.java
/*
* ==============================
==============================================
* GNU Lesser General Public License
* ==============================
==============================================
*
* JasperReports – Free Java report-generating library.
* Copyright (C) 2001-2006 JasperSoft Corporation http://www.jaspersoft.com/
*
* This library is free software; you can redistribute it and/or
* modify it under the terms of the GNU Lesser General Public
* License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either
* version 2.1 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.
*
* This library is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
* but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
* MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU
* Lesser General Public License for more details.
*
* You should have received a copy of the GNU Lesser General Public
* License along with this library; if not, write to the Free Software
* Foundation, Inc., 59 Temple Place, Suite 330, Boston, MA 02111-1307, USA.
*
* JasperSoft Corporation
* 303 Second Street, Suite 450 North
* San Francisco, CA 94107
* http://www.jaspersoft.com/
*/

******************************

******************************************************************************

This is from the LGPL v2.1, found at http://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/lgpl-2.1.html

Note the specific language from section Titled “TERMS AND CONDITIONS FOR COPYING, DISTRIBUTION AND MODIFICATION”, section 0 , which reads . . .

“Activities other than copying, distribution and modification are not covered by this License; they are outside its scope. ”

 

__________________________________

Taken from a comment posted on http://gpl3.blogspot.com/2008/04/gpl-project-watch-list-for-week-of-0418.html

Nick Halsey said…
A quick correction – JasperSoft has not yet adopted v3 of either the GPL or LGPL, though we are currently studying this option. Currently we license JasperReports under LGPL v2, and the rest of the JasperSoft Business Intelligence Suite under GPL v2.
April 23, 2008 7:36 PM
_______________________________________

 

After reviewing the information above, in this example, JasperReports version 2.0.5, licenses to a user to distribute and modify under the specific terms and conditions of the “GNU Lesser General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either


version 2.1 of the License, or (at option) any later version”, like version 3.

question: Is JasperReports release version 2.0.5 available under the terms and conditions of the LGPL v3?

While the developers chose to license the use of the software to be governed by the terms of the LGPL v2.1 and have not distributed an LGPLv3 release, it is possible that developers could download and redistribute JasperReports under LGPL v3.
answer: At the discretion of the users, as permitted within the terms of the license for JasperReports, maybe.

– Ernest Park



Thanks for the Continued Support and Contributions
Our database is partly maintained by our team of researchers as well by the contributions that are received from the community. Here is a submission we received last week through email:

****************************************************************************
Métamorphose


“Hello,

….ust wanted to let you know my program is now on gpl3 since the last release earlier this year. The newer alpha version is also on v3.

cheers


– ianaré sévi”Description:
A cross platform file and folder mass renamer, allows many different renaming operations in a GUI. Features include search and replace (with RE), insert, numbering, date/time, id3 & EXIF tag read, change length, get all files in sub-dirs, undo/redo, etc.Newest Release:
1.1.0 stable
****************************************************************************


We appreciate all the contributions that have been made, either through our form on our web page or by email, and we also like to hear why you are changing your project’s license as in the email above. It gives us more insight into which direction license trends are moving. We will continue to post up user contributions to our blog each week, and we may quote parts of your emails. If you wish the email to remain private, just mention so and we will not disclose any part of it.

Much Appreciated,

Palamida R&D Group

Notable Mentionwsqig
Palamida actively takes submissions from visitors on updates on new GPL v3/LGPL 3 projects. We are amazed at the number of submissions we have gotten to date, but even more so, we are incredibly grateful to the almost 100 core contributors who have devoted their time and resources at helping us provide up-to-date information.

The Research Group (rdgroup@palamida.com)

  • Ernest Park
  • Antony Tran
  • Kevin Howard