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From: Christopher Faylor <cgf-H+wXaHxf7aLQT0dZR+AlfA <at> public.gmane.org>
Subject: Re: Re: COUNTER-[PATCH] 64 bit formatting directives on MingW32
Newsgroups: gmane.comp.gnu.mingw.devel
Date: Monday 21st July 2003 04:42:14 UTC (over 14 years ago)
On Wed, Jul 16, 2003 at 07:22:48AM -0400, Earnie Boyd wrote:
>Wu Yongwei wrote:
>>Danny Smith wrote:
>>>I've already peeked at cygwin's implementation and so I've tainted my
>>>ability to write the function without infinging on copyright.
>>Copyright is about expressions, not about ideas.  Only patent is about
>Thanks for speaking to this Wu.  Danny's statements have been bugging
>me.  I don't see how sitting down writing code from scratch that
>matches an idea is violating anyone's copyright.  I already know that
>look and feel cannot be copyrighted, and this matches the look and feel
>scenario.  We would all be in a world of copywrite infringing if
>Danny's statement were true.

It seems to me that this kind of speculation on copyright is really
rather dangerous.  The software industry has been careful for years
about copyrights and enforcement thereof.  Within Red Hat we all try to
adhere to the principles that Danny is evincing.  If someone has looked
at some copyrighted code which implements an algorithm we need, they are
not allowed to work on a project which requires an implementation of the
algorithm.  They are considered "tainted".

>>Not my words.  I saw some lawyer say so when commenting on the present
>>vs IBM case regarding Linux copyright.
>Sometimes, when one starts hurting, they seek to pass on the hurt often 
>to find that they caused themselves more hurt.


I believe that the SCO case being quoted is that sometimes there are
only a limited number of ways to do something so, if Danny looked at the
cygwin implementation of "vhangup", saw that it set errno to ENOSYS, and
just returned, then implementing something similar in mingw could not be
called infringing, since it could be argued that that is the only
reasonable way to implement the function.

The workarounds in cygwin's mmap are the result of lots of hard work by
Corinna (and even me to some small degree).  They are not a simple,
"well, of course" type of implementation.  They would take a certain
amount of effort to understand.

So, IMO, Danny is "tainted" and should not work on a mmap
implementation.  I believe he could certainly describe what he now knows
to someone who could implement it though.

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