Chad Perrin: SOB

2 July 2006

Finding Licenses

Filed under: Geek,Liberty — apotheon @ 03:30

It’s not easy to find free/libre/open source software these days that is licensed other than GPL, I’m finding. There are major projects with other licenses (Apache, X Windows, and the various *BSD operating systems come to mind), but it’s simply not as easy as I’d like to live GPL-free without going entirely the other way and embracing closed-source software. I’m caught, as they might say, between the devil and the deep blue sea.

I have already sent an email to Brian Harvey about his UCBLogo implementation, since it seems to be the only non-KDE implementation of Logo available through the Debian archives, asking him about the likelihood of getting it relicensed (or dual-licensed) under the terms of the BSD license. I’m hunting for other software alternatives to GPLed packages I’m currently using as well. Unfortunately, I’ll end up having to find a new favorite window manager if I ever abandon GPL software entirely, especially since I sincerely doubt the WindowMaker maintainers are going to be too keen on arranging to relicense it on my say-so. I don’t think WindowMaker runs so easily on *BSD anyway, though, so if I swap kernels I’m likely to swap window managers in any case.

I’ve decided to compile a short list of some software I’ve been using that is GPL, and alternatives I’ve found that are not (but are still FLOSS). I may ultimately post the list here at SOB, but in the meantime, if you’re having trouble finding non-GPL FLOSS alternatives to what you’re already using, feel free to contact me (probably most easily by commenting on this entry) if you want some help finding them.

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All original content Copyright Chad Perrin: Distributed under the terms of the Open Works License