I appreciate that the group is thinking of ways to further enhance the
Win32Forth system via clearing up the licensing situation, which is a really
not absolutly clear. Keep the comments coming and will figure it out.
IMHO, last time this came up Tom made it reasonably clear that
since he was asked that he wanted Win32Forth to stay as
"Public Domain" but that he is not the only author. He reconfirmed
that some parts of the system are copyrighted for example the assemler.
As I remember he also indicated that it has been working fine as is.
There was some talk at that time, about "can a person declare
a work to be in the public domain" or does it have to follow the
usual route of becoming public domain as he result of some other
rights expiring.after a number of years.
Unfortunately I did not archive that interchange and a search of
Google groups does not find it either. Does any one have a copy
of the old Topica conversations?
I found another address for Tom and have just tried it out,
I will see if it balances.
THE GOOD - If you look into the history as recorded in the CVS system is
coming along quite nicely. Bugs are being fixed the "C" wrapper is being or
has been removed and may advances are being made. I wonder if anyone is
holding back because the system is simply in the public domain?
What are we trying to accomplish with a license?
Is there a problem to solve?
I think were pretty much on our own as a group and the only thing I can
suggest is that it might be a nice idea to put a more prominant indication
that the system is public domain and the fact that means anyone can do
anything they want with a including selling it for profit. But don't really
see much risk that someone is going to runoff and patentet it, trade mark
the name or claim it is their own, but if that is the concern, let's address
Here is what Tom put in the help files via F1
"WARNING, THERE IS NO WARRANTY!!!"
Win32Forth (including the integrated WinEd editor) is a public domain
Forth language development system. That means it is provided without
support. As time and inclination permit, I will at times update
Win32Forth and repair bugs that I decide to fix. However no warranty
for usability, reliability, correctness or any other characteristic is
provided or implied. If you choose to use Win32Forth for an
application, either personal or commercial, you assume the
responsibility for its usability, reliability, correctness and all
other program characteristics and warranty responsibilities. Neither
Thomas Zimmer nor any other contributor to Win32Forth will assume any
responsibility for its use in any manner.
I appologize for the need for the previous paragraph, but you do need
to be warned.
I should also mention, that the amount of time I have to answer
questions is quite limited. You should post your questions on the
Forth news group;
What do you think? We can always improve on the above. . .
For example my spell checker is questioning the spelling of apologize in
John A. Peters
----- Original Message -----
From: "Jim Schneider" <jpschnei@...>
Sent: Thursday, May 06, 2004 6:35 AM
Subject: Re: [personal] [win32forth] Re: a License for Win32Forth
> Does someone have a way of getting messages to Tom? The state of the
> license is quite a muddle, and he and Andrew McKewan (sp?) are about
> the only ones who can resolve it.
> IIRC, they (Tom and Andrew) are the co-authors of the original work,
> which started as a work for hire (although parts are clearly derivative
> of previous work that Tom did with F-PC). Tom has subsequently claimed
> to put the work "in the public domain", which could be taken as
> equivalent to abandoning his rights to the software. However, he's not
> the only one with rights, and before we can presume to impose a
> license, we need to get permission from the ones who have rights in the
> original software.
> From where I sit, here's what I see that we need:
> A) If it's a work-for-hire, the company Tom and Andrew were working
> for when they wrote the original Win32Forth needs to either cede their
> rights or outline what license they're willing to use. Since I don't
> remember who that was, we're going to need to find out from Tom.
> B) If it's not a work-for-hire, both Tom and Andrew as co-authors will
> need to make a statement either abandoning their rights, or telling us
> what license they want us to use.
> The license status of the rest of the distribution can be cleared up
> later, but until we get either A or B done, we're pretty much in limbo.
> It's not a question of "professional courtesy", it's a matter of law -
> the only entities that can legally license Win32Forth are the ones who
> own the rights, which would either be the original creators, or the
> company the were working for.
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