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Re: Introduction Date and Function objects to the standard

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  • Greg Patnude
    You know Mert -- I think you are on to something here but I have to suggest an alternative to your implementation -- I personally can t readily accept a
    Message 1 of 18 , May 23, 2006
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      You know Mert -- I think you are on to something here but I have to
      suggest an alternative to your implementation -- I personally can't
      readily accept a situation where every time the language changes -- I
      would need to update the JSON parser and redeploy it to my server(s) --
      I think a better approach would be for the JavaScript version (let's
      call it the "runtime" or the "client-side parser") of the JSON parser to
      server as a wrapper around the JavaScript core objects. This makes sense
      for a lot of reasons, including:

      * Automatic forward compatibility as the ECMA standard evolves and
      the JavaScript interpreters evolve
      * Native support for ALL JavaScript "types", including the
      troublesome JavaScript "Date" type. If you look closely at the "Date"
      type -- you will see that it is more object than variable -- in fact --
      it is a composite object, encapsulating strings, numbers, and functions
      (methods) -- this is why you can't really parse a native date in the
      core JSON
      * This would implement your idea of incorporating a stringified
      function definition into a callable function

      I wouldn't really suggest throwing out the baby with the bathwater --
      the JSON parser developed by Doug Crockford is excellent -- but I would
      suggest some restructuring -- this is a somewhat major and radical
      solution but it would be a "one-time" restructuring --

      My suggestion would be to blend the JSON tokenizer with a loop iterator.
      Fundamentally -- the JSON parser loops through the stringified object
      and then iterates through the native JavaScript "types" -- the goal of
      the improved parser is to cast the stringified data into a JavaScript
      native type...




      --- In json@yahoogroups.com, "Mert Sakarya" <msakarya@...> wrote:
      >
      > Can we use function definitions in JSON? Eg.
      >
      > {"book": {
      > "name": "bookname",
      > "chapter": [...],
      > "gotoChapter" : function(chapterId) {...}
      > }
      > }
      >
      > And how about using Date objects? Eg.
      >
      > {"book": {
      > "name": "bookname",
      > "chapter": [...],
      > "gotoChapter" : function(chapterId) {...},
      > "printDate" : new Date(2000,06,31,12,11,00)
      > }
      > }
      >
      > The two examples above cannot be parsed, "parse" method on the
      standard.
      >
      > I think, adding function definitions to the standard, adds great
      > flexibility for javascript, but decreases portability.
      >




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Fang Yidong
      I think why JSON be successful as a data-interchange format is its simplicity and neutral nature for many languages. Adding function definition just make JSON
      Message 2 of 18 , May 23, 2006
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        I think why JSON be successful as a data-interchange
        format is its simplicity and neutral nature for many
        languages. Adding function definition just make JSON
        stick to javascript. As to the datatype 'Date',you can
        use number or string to represent it.

        --- Mert Sakarya <msakarya@...>:

        > Can we use function definitions in JSON? Eg.
        >
        > {"book": {
        > "name": "bookname",
        > "chapter": [...],
        > "gotoChapter" : function(chapterId) {...}
        > }
        > }
        >
        > And how about using Date objects? Eg.
        >
        > {"book": {
        > "name": "bookname",
        > "chapter": [...],
        > "gotoChapter" : function(chapterId) {...},
        > "printDate" : new Date(2000,06,31,12,11,00)
        > }
        > }
        >
        > The two examples above cannot be parsed, "parse"
        > method on the standard.
        >
        > I think, adding function definitions to the
        > standard, adds great
        > flexibility for javascript, but decreases
        > portability.
        >
        >
        >
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      • Lindsay
        ... Agreed. Maybe define a std date format, there s a ISO one which would do fine. -- Lindsay
        Message 3 of 18 , May 25, 2006
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          Fang Yidong wrote:
          > I think why JSON be successful as a data-interchange
          > format is its simplicity and neutral nature for many
          > languages. Adding function definition just make JSON
          > stick to javascript. As to the datatype 'Date',you can
          > use number or string to represent it.
          >

          Agreed. Maybe define a std date format, there's a ISO one which would do
          fine.


          --
          Lindsay
        • Greg Patnude
          I have a JSON compatible date parser which converts a stringified version of a C-Type date (mm-dd-yyyy hh:mm:ss.nnnn [AM:PM]) into a JavaScript native Date
          Message 4 of 18 , May 26, 2006
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            I have a JSON compatible date parser which converts a stringified
            version of a C-Type date (mm-dd-yyyy hh:mm:ss.nnnn [AM:PM]) into a
            JavaScript native Date object format...

            I will offer it to the JSON community to be included as a component of
            the json.js library -- provided under the JSON License (Doug's "Good
            NOT Evil" license)...

            Speaking of the "Good NOT Evil" license -- is anyone interested in
            formalizing that ? like the myriad licensing already available -- GPL,
            or LGPL, or BSD Licenses... we could call it the "GNOTE" license....


            --- In json@yahoogroups.com, Lindsay <lindsay@...> wrote:
            >
            > Fang Yidong wrote:
            > > I think why JSON be successful as a data-interchange
            > > format is its simplicity and neutral nature for many
            > > languages. Adding function definition just make JSON
            > > stick to javascript. As to the datatype 'Date',you can
            > > use number or string to represent it.
            > >
            >
            > Agreed. Maybe define a std date format, there's a ISO one which
            would do
            > fine.
            >
            >
            > --
            > Lindsay
            >
          • Greg Patnude
            I think everyone is missing teh point I am trying to make --- I truly believe that Object Notation is the holy grail of data interchange. As a result, I
            Message 5 of 18 , May 26, 2006
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              I think everyone is missing teh point I am trying to make --- I truly
              believe that "Object Notation" is the holy grail of data interchange.
              As a result, I would like to see object notation extended beyond just
              support for JavaScript (JSON) to every language --

              If we are truly talking about Object Notation -- then the parser(s)
              need to support all of the native object types for any given
              programming language -- If we are only talking about JavaScript
              Object Notation -- then I would expect the parser(s) to support all
              of the object / data types native to JavaScript.

              So -- if JSON is to TRULY represent the JavaScript Objects -- in
              addition to String, Number, Array, Object, true, false, and null
              objects -- the parser should also necessarily include

              • Date
              • Math
              • Function
              • RegExp
              and
              • Boolean objects...

              My desire is to see object notation become mainstream -- much more
              than JSON and bigger than XML even -- In order to accomplish that --
              we would really need an object notation parser for every language
              that is to be supported -- the purpose of the parser(s) would be to
              convert the object notation format to and from native language
              objects (NLO's) and variable data types...

              So, in a JavaScript implementation -- the parser would support all of
              the JavaScript core data types: OBject, Array, Function, String,
              Date, Number, etc...

              In a VBScript implementation: the parser would support Variant,
              String, Number, Array, etc...

              You get the idea -- basically -- I am proposing a "type-mapping"
              mechanism and wrappers that support a language independent
              implementation of object-notation


              --- In json@yahoogroups.com, Lindsay <lindsay@...> wrote:
              >
              > Fang Yidong wrote:
              > > I think why JSON be successful as a data-interchange
              > > format is its simplicity and neutral nature for many
              > > languages. Adding function definition just make JSON
              > > stick to javascript. As to the datatype 'Date',you can
              > > use number or string to represent it.
              > >
              >
              > Agreed. Maybe define a std date format, there's a ISO one which
              would do
              > fine.
              >
              >
              > --
              > Lindsay
              >
            • Martin Cooper
              ... Why the C format? Why not base it on the ISO standard, if we have to include dates in JSON? And if the above format actually defines what you have, then
              Message 6 of 18 , May 26, 2006
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                On 5/26/06, Greg Patnude <gpatnude@...> wrote:
                >
                > I have a JSON compatible date parser which converts a stringified
                > version of a C-Type date (mm-dd-yyyy hh:mm:ss.nnnn [AM:PM]) into a
                > JavaScript native Date object format...


                Why the C format? Why not base it on the ISO standard, if we have to include
                dates in JSON? And if the above format actually defines what you have, then
                how would I specify the time zone? Or is it assumed to be UTC?

                I will offer it to the JSON community to be included as a component of
                > the json.js library -- provided under the JSON License (Doug's "Good
                > NOT Evil" license)...
                >
                > Speaking of the "Good NOT Evil" license -- is anyone interested in
                > formalizing that ? like the myriad licensing already available -- GPL,
                > or LGPL, or BSD Licenses... we could call it the "GNOTE" license....


                No, no, no! There are already dozens and dozens of open source licenses.
                There is absolutely no good reason to invent another one. Do you have any
                idea how much legal crap creating a new license creates for any company or
                other organisation that actually wants to use the associated software? If
                you want to formalise the license, please, please pick one of these:

                http://www.opensource.org/licenses/

                I'd suggest the Apache License 2.0, which pretty much says you can do
                whatever you want with the software as long as you keep the original license
                in place.

                --
                Martin Cooper


                --- In json@yahoogroups.com, Lindsay <lindsay@...> wrote:
                > >
                > > Fang Yidong wrote:
                > > > I think why JSON be successful as a data-interchange
                > > > format is its simplicity and neutral nature for many
                > > > languages. Adding function definition just make JSON
                > > > stick to javascript. As to the datatype 'Date',you can
                > > > use number or string to represent it.
                > > >
                > >
                > > Agreed. Maybe define a std date format, there's a ISO one which
                > would do
                > > fine.
                > >
                > >
                > > --
                > > Lindsay
                > >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Christopher Stumm
                ... Maybe I m missing something, but why wouldn t one simply use the standard unix time? It does not rely on time-zones (which people seem to largely ignore on
                Message 7 of 18 , May 26, 2006
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                  On 26 May, 2006, at 12:31, Martin Cooper wrote:

                  > On 5/26/06, Greg Patnude <gpatnude@...> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > I have a JSON compatible date parser which converts a stringified
                  > > version of a C-Type date (mm-dd-yyyy hh:mm:ss.nnnn [AM:PM]) into a
                  > > JavaScript native Date object format...
                  >
                  > Why the C format? Why not base it on the ISO standard, if we have to
                  > include
                  > dates in JSON? And if the above format actually defines what you
                  > have, then
                  > how would I specify the time zone? Or is it assumed to be UTC?

                  Maybe I'm missing something, but why wouldn't one simply use the
                  standard
                  unix time? It does not rely on time-zones (which people seem to largely
                  ignore
                  on the internet), and is likely supported already by most languages, JS
                  included.
                  In addition it can easily be sent around as a simple int.

                  -Christopher
                • Dave Balmer
                  Greg, I ve given this a bit of thought too, but in the end this would only complicate matters exponentially. Making a simple data parser is one thing, but
                  Message 8 of 18 , May 26, 2006
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                    Greg,

                    I've given this a bit of thought too, but in the end this would only
                    complicate matters exponentially. Making a simple data parser is one
                    thing, but adding in a language parser (much less many language
                    parsers) on top of that just isn't practical.

                    Taking this "next logical step" would in fact narrow JSON's use as a
                    lightweight data exchange format, and limit adoption.

                    There's nothing which says you can't rig something (there are several
                    applications which abuse CDATA in XML to introduce in-line code, for
                    example), but I see no value in adding it to the specs.

                    Dave


                    On May 26, 2006, at 8:33 AM, Greg Patnude wrote:

                    > I think everyone is missing teh point I am trying to make --- I truly
                    > believe that "Object Notation" is the holy grail of data interchange.
                    > As a result, I would like to see object notation extended beyond just
                    > support for JavaScript (JSON) to every language --
                    >
                    > If we are truly talking about Object Notation -- then the parser(s)
                    > need to support all of the native object types for any given
                    > programming language -- If we are only talking about JavaScript
                    > Object Notation -- then I would expect the parser(s) to support all
                    > of the object / data types native to JavaScript.
                    >
                    > So -- if JSON is to TRULY represent the JavaScript Objects -- in
                    > addition to String, Number, Array, Object, true, false, and null
                    > objects -- the parser should also necessarily include
                    >
                    > • Date
                    > • Math
                    > • Function
                    > • RegExp
                    > and
                    > • Boolean objects...
                    >
                    > My desire is to see object notation become mainstream -- much more
                    > than JSON and bigger than XML even -- In order to accomplish that --
                    > we would really need an object notation parser for every language
                    > that is to be supported -- the purpose of the parser(s) would be to
                    > convert the object notation format to and from native language
                    > objects (NLO's) and variable data types...
                    >
                    > So, in a JavaScript implementation -- the parser would support all of
                    > the JavaScript core data types: OBject, Array, Function, String,
                    > Date, Number, etc...
                    >
                    > In a VBScript implementation: the parser would support Variant,
                    > String, Number, Array, etc...
                    >
                    > You get the idea -- basically -- I am proposing a "type-mapping"
                    > mechanism and wrappers that support a language independent
                    > implementation of object-notation
                    >
                    >
                    > --- In json@yahoogroups.com, Lindsay <lindsay@...> wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Fang Yidong wrote:
                    > > > I think why JSON be successful as a data-interchange
                    > > > format is its simplicity and neutral nature for many
                    > > > languages. Adding function definition just make JSON
                    > > > stick to javascript. As to the datatype 'Date',you can
                    > > > use number or string to represent it.
                    > > >
                    > >
                    > > Agreed. Maybe define a std date format, there's a ISO one which
                    > would do
                    > > fine.
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > --
                    > > Lindsay
                    > >
                    >
                    >

                    ---
                    "Mean people suck." -- unknown
                  • Greg Patnude
                    It is originally based on converting a date-time string from an ANSI SQL database into a JavaScript UTC time... The ANSI SQL datetime (timestamp) appeared to
                    Message 9 of 18 , May 26, 2006
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                      It is originally based on converting a date-time string from an ANSI
                      SQL database into a JavaScript UTC time... The ANSI SQL datetime
                      (timestamp) appeared to be "closest to" the JavaScript Date()
                      constructor at the time I developed the library --

                      var dt = new Date("mm-dd-yy hh:mm:ss.ms");


                      Since 99.999% of the dates / times I display in the UI come from the
                      RDBMS -- this also made a lot of sense at the time....

                      RE: Unix date / time -- not everyone is into Unix... many people
                      appear to be using PHP, Perl, and ASP... Personally -- if it were
                      100% Unix / C / Java / ANSI SQL types -- I would be a happy camper...
                      but... we gotta provide support for the greatest common
                      denominator... not the lowest common denominator...



                      --- In json@yahoogroups.com, Christopher Stumm <christopher@...>
                      wrote:
                      >
                      > On 26 May, 2006, at 12:31, Martin Cooper wrote:
                      >
                      > > On 5/26/06, Greg Patnude <gpatnude@...> wrote:
                      > > >
                      > > > I have a JSON compatible date parser which converts a
                      stringified
                      > > > version of a C-Type date (mm-dd-yyyy hh:mm:ss.nnnn [AM:PM])
                      into a
                      > > > JavaScript native Date object format...
                      > >
                      > > Why the C format? Why not base it on the ISO standard, if we
                      have to
                      > > include
                      > > dates in JSON? And if the above format actually defines what you
                      > > have, then
                      > > how would I specify the time zone? Or is it assumed to be UTC?
                      >
                      > Maybe I'm missing something, but why wouldn't one simply use the
                      > standard
                      > unix time? It does not rely on time-zones (which people seem to
                      largely
                      > ignore
                      > on the internet), and is likely supported already by most
                      languages, JS
                      > included.
                      > In addition it can easily be sent around as a simple int.
                      >
                      > -Christopher
                      >
                    • Fang Yidong
                      It s not necessary to add Date SPEC to JSON to make things work. JSON just give you the freedom to do whatever you want. I ve used JSON.simple to exchange
                      Message 10 of 18 , May 26, 2006
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                        It's not necessary to add Date SPEC to JSON to make
                        things work. JSON just give you the freedom to do
                        whatever you want.

                        I've used JSON.simple to exchange millions of records
                        contains date and time fields from Oracle to
                        Postgres,it works very well and just 2 or 3 lines
                        added to convert the date and time format between
                        Oracle and Postgres,without the Date SPEC.

                        So I think the core primitive datetype
                        String,True,False,Number and Null of JSON is enough.

                        --- Greg Patnude <gpatnude@...>:

                        > It is originally based on converting a date-time
                        > string from an ANSI
                        > SQL database into a JavaScript UTC time... The ANSI
                        > SQL datetime
                        > (timestamp) appeared to be "closest to" the
                        > JavaScript Date()
                        > constructor at the time I developed the library --
                        >
                        > var dt = new Date("mm-dd-yy hh:mm:ss.ms");
                        >
                        >
                        > Since 99.999% of the dates / times I display in the
                        > UI come from the
                        > RDBMS -- this also made a lot of sense at the
                        > time....
                        >
                        > RE: Unix date / time -- not everyone is into Unix...
                        > many people
                        > appear to be using PHP, Perl, and ASP... Personally
                        > -- if it were
                        > 100% Unix / C / Java / ANSI SQL types -- I would be
                        > a happy camper...
                        > but... we gotta provide support for the greatest
                        > common
                        > denominator... not the lowest common denominator...
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > --- In json@yahoogroups.com, Christopher Stumm
                        > <christopher@...>
                        > wrote:
                        > >
                        > > On 26 May, 2006, at 12:31, Martin Cooper wrote:
                        > >
                        > > > On 5/26/06, Greg Patnude <gpatnude@...> wrote:
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I have a JSON compatible date parser which
                        > converts a
                        > stringified
                        > > > > version of a C-Type date (mm-dd-yyyy
                        > hh:mm:ss.nnnn [AM:PM])
                        > into a
                        > > > > JavaScript native Date object format...
                        > > >
                        > > > Why the C format? Why not base it on the ISO
                        > standard, if we
                        > have to
                        > > > include
                        > > > dates in JSON? And if the above format actually
                        > defines what you
                        > > > have, then
                        > > > how would I specify the time zone? Or is it
                        > assumed to be UTC?
                        > >
                        > > Maybe I'm missing something, but why wouldn't one
                        > simply use the
                        > > standard
                        > > unix time? It does not rely on time-zones (which
                        > people seem to
                        > largely
                        > > ignore
                        > > on the internet), and is likely supported already
                        > by most
                        > languages, JS
                        > > included.
                        > > In addition it can easily be sent around as a
                        > simple int.
                        > >
                        > > -Christopher
                        > >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
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                      • Lindsay
                        ... Agreed. I d like to see a std for dates as they are very commonly used and nearly count as a scalar type :) But stick to the KISS principle. Feature bloat
                        Message 11 of 18 , May 28, 2006
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                          Dave Balmer wrote:
                          > Greg,
                          >
                          > I've given this a bit of thought too, but in the end this would only
                          > complicate matters exponentially. Making a simple data parser is one
                          > thing, but adding in a language parser (much less many language
                          > parsers) on top of that just isn't practical.
                          >

                          Agreed. I'd like to see a std for dates as they are very commonly used
                          and nearly count as a scalar type :) But stick to the KISS principle.
                          Feature bloat his killed a lot of stds.


                          --
                          Lindsay
                        • Kevin Smith
                          ... I completely agree. We were unable to use the GNOTE-licensed code in either our GPL application, or in our other app that s currently closed-source.
                          Message 12 of 18 , Jun 3 9:37 AM
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                            --- In json@yahoogroups.com, "Martin Cooper" wrote:
                            >
                            > On 5/26/06, Greg Patnude <gpatnude@...> wrote:
                            > >
                            > > Speaking of the "Good NOT Evil" license -- is anyone interested in
                            > > formalizing that ? like the myriad licensing already available --
                            > > GPL, or LGPL, or BSD Licenses... we could call it the "GNOTE"
                            > > license....
                            >
                            >
                            > No, no, no! There are already dozens and dozens of open source
                            > licenses. There is absolutely no good reason to invent another one.
                            > Do you have any idea how much legal crap creating a new license
                            > creates for any company or other organisation that actually wants
                            > to use the associated software?

                            I completely agree. We were unable to use the GNOTE-licensed code in
                            either our GPL application, or in our other app that's currently
                            closed-source. Fortunately, we found a json implementation under a
                            simpler license, so we didn't have to re-invent it from scratch.

                            Personally, my big problem with the GNOTE license is: WHO decides what
                            is evil? Some folks thing gays are evil, while others think that
                            anti-gay behavior is evil. Some folks think Bin Laden is evil, but
                            I'm pretty sure he thinks his enemies are the evil ones. Worse...what
                            is "evil" can change over time, so I might be allowed to use the
                            software today, but next year my use might be considered evil by the
                            license holder.

                            It's a great idea, but just doesn't work in practice. Basically, it
                            will either discourage people from using the software, or will
                            encourage people to ignore or violate the license, whether
                            intentionally, or due to a disagreement over what is evil. Pretty much
                            anyone who takes licenses seriously will not be able to use GNOTE
                            software.

                            > I'd suggest the Apache License 2.0, which pretty much says you can
                            > do whatever you want with the software as long as you keep the
                            > original license in place.

                            Except that Apache License 2.0 code (arguably) can't be linked with
                            GPL software, which is unfortunate. For widest compatibility with
                            other licenses, I prefer the MIT-style license, which is even more
                            liberal. The LGPL also tends to work well with proprietary and Free
                            software.

                            Kevin
                          • Michal Migurski
                            ... Except for time zones. ... As another poster commented, unix epoch is a great transmission format thanks to its explicit treatment of time zones. Every
                            Message 13 of 18 , Jun 3 12:03 PM
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                              > var dt = new Date("mm-dd-yy hh:mm:ss.ms");
                              >
                              >
                              > Since 99.999% of the dates / times I display in the UI come from the
                              > RDBMS -- this also made a lot of sense at the time....

                              Except for time zones.

                              > RE: Unix date / time -- not everyone is into Unix... many people
                              > appear to be using PHP, Perl, and ASP... Personally -- if it were
                              > 100% Unix / C / Java / ANSI SQL types -- I would be a happy camper...
                              > but... we gotta provide support for the greatest common
                              > denominator... not the lowest common denominator...

                              As another poster commented, unix epoch is a great transmission
                              format thanks to its explicit treatment of time zones. Every language
                              I deal with in my work uses it (PHP, Python, ECMA-, Action-, and
                              JavaScript in milliseconds), and I find it vastly preferable when
                              moving data between web servers, DB servers, and client browsers that
                              are in unknown locations. The Atom spec does something similar, by
                              requiring dates to be expressed in UTC.

                              I'm generally opposed to the inclusion of dates and functions into
                              javascript, though. Python has four ways to describe dates, and PHP
                              limits what can be done with functions as data. No sense in taking a
                              simple, beautiful spec and complicating it just to satisfy a few edge
                              cases.

                              -mike.

                              ----------------------------------------------------------------
                              michal migurski- contact info and pgp key:
                              sf/ca http://mike.teczno.com/contact.html
                            • Martin Cooper
                              ... ... No, that s not the case (and there is no arguably ;), at least from an ASF perspective. There is a policy in place at the Apache Software
                              Message 14 of 18 , Jun 6 10:01 PM
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                                On 6/3/06, Kevin Smith <yahoogroups@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > --- In json@yahoogroups.com, "Martin Cooper" wrote:


                                <snip/>

                                > I'd suggest the Apache License 2.0, which pretty much says you can
                                > > do whatever you want with the software as long as you keep the
                                > > original license in place.
                                >
                                > Except that Apache License 2.0 code (arguably) can't be linked with
                                > GPL software, which is unfortunate.


                                No, that's not the case (and there is no "arguably" ;), at least from an ASF
                                perspective.

                                There is a policy in place at the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) that
                                states that ASF projects cannot have required dependencies on, or bundle,
                                libraries licensed under the GPL or certain other licenses. What that means
                                is that whenever you download ASF software, you can be absolutely sure that
                                there are no "tricks up our sleeve" and you do not suddenly find yourself
                                using additional software, with incompatible licenses, that you may not have
                                expected.

                                That is _completely_ different from what you, as a user of ASF software,
                                choose to do with it. If you want to build an application that includes ASF
                                and GPL software, that is absolutely fine with the ASF.

                                For widest compatibility with
                                > other licenses, I prefer the MIT-style license, which is even more
                                > liberal. The LGPL also tends to work well with proprietary and Free
                                > software.


                                I'd agree that the MIT license is very flexible, but I'd suggest caution
                                with the LGPL in a business environment. But this is getting way off-topic
                                for this list...

                                --
                                Martin Cooper


                                Kevin
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                                > Yahoo! Groups Links
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