[linux-elitists] [geoff@geoffhutchison.net: Re: [InChI-discuss] Re: InChI software license]

Eugen Leitl eugen@leitl.org
Wed Oct 5 12:30:43 PDT 2005


----- Forwarded message from Geoffrey Hutchison <geoff@geoffhutchison.net> -----

From: Geoffrey Hutchison <geoff@geoffhutchison.net>
Date: Wed, 5 Oct 2005 14:59:11 -0400
To: inchi-discuss@lists.sourceforge.net
Cc: jsb@cambridgesoft.com
Subject: Re: [InChI-discuss] Re: InChI software license
X-Mailer: Apple Mail (2.734)
Reply-To: inchi-discuss@lists.sourceforge.net


On Oct 5, 2005, at 11:48 AM, Jonathan Brecher wrote:

>I am not a lawyer, but it seems pretty innocuous to me.  Is the  
>only issue here that it doesn't satisfy the exact letter of the  
>requirements for being "Open Source"? Or is there an actual issue  
>of substance here that I'm missing, that would prevent someone from  
>using the InChI source code?

I am not a lawyer either, and I do not play one on TV. Initially, the  
license looked fine to me too. But in reality, it prevents quite a  
lot of people and software projects from using InChI source code.  
That's why several of us are raising the issue. (Honestly, I hate  
software licenses.)

You may not care personally, because the license allows you to use  
and integrate InChI code into ChemDraw or other CambridgeSoft  
programs. Heck, I think that would be a great addition to ChemDraw 10  
or 11 or whatever. Can I consider this e-mail a feature suggestion? :-)

But the current license is completely incompatible with *any* open  
source license. So anyone who wants to add InChI support to an open  
project (like me) either has to re-implement InChI from scratch or  
ship the current IUPAC/NIST code and hope they don't get sued.  
Neither way seems to be the goal of InChI, so we're hoping the  
software license can be reconsidered.

And as we've said, In the process, I think a lot of good things would  
happen. I suspect that InChI would gain fast uptake in open chemistry  
tools, Linux distributions, etc.

Cheers,
-Geoff

----- End forwarded message -----
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Eugen* Leitl <a href="http://leitl.org">leitl</a>
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