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Re: [Help-gsl] Source code for HiCalc / breah of GPL for GSL

From: Dr. David Kirkby
Subject: Re: [Help-gsl] Source code for HiCalc / breah of GPL for GSL
Date: Tue, 11 Jul 2006 20:03:40 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; SunOS sun4u; en-US; rv:1.7) Gecko/20060120

Li, Timothy - BLS wrote:
-- Just a comment --

I suspect HiCalc will drop using the GSL and implement numerical
algorithms by themselves.

That would not get them out of their responsibilities under the GPL. The source code for the *current* version should still be released. If they choose to use a different library for a later release that is up to them.

Inverting matrices is not a challenge to even
an average programmer today,

Easy to go wrong if the matrix is close to singular.

but given out their source code would be
too much of a financial loss to them. I don't see any function in HiCalc
can not live without GSL.

But I can't see how they can (or rater should) avoid giving the source. The GPL is clear on that and its clear they are using a GPL'ed library.

They have obviously profited for some time using the work of others so I don't see why they should continue to withhold the source so they can continue to profit.

If they provide an extra service (support for example), then that is a different matter. But the source should still be released.

To be fair, they have not declined to release the source. I have asked them about it today, but that was only a few hours ago.

Of course there is the point the contravention is likely to have been unintentional. But you can crash your car into someone elses car unintentionally - it does not free you from your responsibilities to pay them for the repair.

In this case it seems to me people are loosing out since the source is not public.

By listing GSL on HiCalc about box in a way promotes the popularity of
GSL, why not just leave it the way it is.

I personally can't agree with you. It would make a mockery of the GPL to advertise on software the fact it uses the GSL and not release the source.

Dr. David Kirkby

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