Response to comments on Intel's proposed BSD+Patent license

Randy Kramer rhkramer at
Sun Nov 4 12:52:25 UTC 2001


Thanks for your response!  I'm not exactly clear on what Intel proposes
for patented software, or the implications thereof, but I imagine that
will become clear as I continue to skim the thread.  OK, I went back and
reread some of the thread -- I guess they propose to give a royalty free
license (on the patent) that allows use (only under a GPL'd OS), but not
modification?  I guess I have the gist of it and can follow along now!

Randy Kramer

Russell Nelson wrote:
> Randy Kramer writes:
>  > 1. Use (and modification) of software can be restricted by copyright but
>  > might also be restricted by patent (if the software uses something which
>  > is patented).
> Because U.S. law relating to intellectual property has been corrupted.
>  > Aside: I would feel cheated (misled, whatever) if I started to use
>  > software that was open source (with the rights associated with the open
>  > source license applied to that software), but some of those rights were
>  > restricted by patent issues, especially if the licensing was so opaque
>  > that I didn't realize that until later.
> Worse than what Intel is doing (that is, trying to be helpful), is the
> issue of third-party and submarine patents.  Intel could write
> software (patented or not), release it under the proposed BSD+Patent
> license, and both you and Intel would be very surprised if someone
> else turned up to also have a patent, or a patent could turn up to
> have been registered but not granted until after you started using
> it.
> Intel can't solve those problems but it should be commended for doing
> what it can (even if it isn't doing everything that we think
> possible).
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