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Re: [Bug-XBoard] WinBoard for JFW

From: Tim Mann
Subject: Re: [Bug-XBoard] WinBoard for JFW
Date: Sat, 27 Jun 2009 20:13:45 -0700

Wow, I thought WinBoard for JFW was a lost cause.  My memories about it
are pretty foggy after all this time, but here is a little background.

The JFW folks hired a programmer to do WinBoard for JFW.  I didn't know
the project was happening until it was "done" and the programmer had
moved on and was no longer contactable.

By the time I got a copy, my development had moved a long way past
4.0.2.  I looked at the source wondering if it would be worthwhile
merging into WinBoard, but I decided not to for a few reasons:  It
seemed to need more work to be useful with all the WinBoard features.
I wasn't excited about adding a feature to WinBoard that you could use
only with a proprietary program.  I was under the impression (maybe
true at the time) that I couldn't even test out the speech features
without buying an expensive copy of JFW.  I was also under the
(apparently wrong) impression that I couldn't even recompile the source
without a copy of JFW or some kind of development kit.

I do remember testing it without the speech turned on and reproducing
the bug where ICS support didn't work.  I think I even found the bug in
the source code... but I thought I couldn't rebuild it with a fix, so I
didn't try.  D'oh.

jfwapi32.dll is something that was included with WinBoard for JFW when
I got it from the JFW folks.  I assume they granted permission to
redistribute this file, because they were freely distributing WinBoard
for JFW from their web site.

On the GPL issue, in general, DLL's are a bit of a fuzzy area.  A
purist could try to argue that jfwapi32.dll gets "linked" with WinBoard
and that linking GPL with non-free code is not OK.  However, this case
doesn't bother me, and I think it would be silly for us to treat it as
a GPL violation.


On Sat, 27 Jun 2009 14:24:19 -0600, Eric Mullins <address@hidden> wrote:
> h.g. muller wrote:
> > I finally succumbed to persistent pressure to have a look at WinBoard 
> > 4.0.2 for JFW,
> > to fix the broken ICS support. It seems I have succeeded in doing 
> > this. I still want to
> > apply a patch to make it speak the thinking output in a useful way, 
> > when showThinking
> > is on (e.g. in analysis mode).
> >
> > My question now is this:
> >
> > The version I downloaded from Tim's website (source package) went 
> > accompanied by a
> > file jfwapi32.dll. It was not clear to me where this file came from, 
> > and what its license
> > situation is. there was no source code for this file, so I suppose it 
> > is not GPL'd. I could
> > not find anything about it in the copyright notice included in the 
> > package.
> >
> > When we are going to distribute my fixed version, would it be allowed 
> > to redistribute
> > this jfwapi32.dll with it?
> >
> I'm not a GPL expert, but I think if you explicitly link with the DLL, 
> then it must be open source.  Maybe it's safe to link at runtime using 
> LoadLibrary() and GetProcAddress() to access the API calls, particularly 
> since it is just providing extra accessibility features not needed for 
> winboard to function.
> In any event, I'm not in favor of shipping that DLL.  People running the 
> JAWS software would already have it, so nobody else needs it.
> _______________________________________________
> Bug-XBoard mailing list
> address@hidden
> http://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/bug-xboard

Tim Mann  address@hidden  http://tim-mann.org/

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