compatibility and the OSD

Forrest J. Cavalier III mibsoft at
Mon Sep 20 14:27:38 UTC 2004

Bob Scheifler wrote:

> For my personal edification, and hoping this is an acceptable inquiry,
> I'd like to understand if and specifically how the following informal
> license sketch conflicts with the OSD. Any and all comments appreciated.
> 1. The licensed work consists of source code, test suite in executable
>    form, and test suite documentation.

I think I like the basic idea of what you are trying to do.  I recall
similar discussions here on this list regarding licensing unmodifiable
test suites (which are OSD compatible, in general).

What you seem to be considering is novel: a dual-license scheme, with
passing a test-suite as the determining factor.

In the past, if there are alternative sets of licensing terms, and one of
the sets is OSD compatible, and the choice of license is not discriminatory
(i.e. available to all) then it is not a defacto incompatibility when
one set of license terms is not OSD compatible.

The details are important though.  Can you clarify the following?

1. If you cannot distribute the test suite in source code form, the
    licensed work is not open source, regardless of license terms.

    If the license term is "cannot modify the test suite", then it
    must be a separate license.

    Can you clarify how the test suite will be distributed?

2. The OSD requires technology-neutral licensing.  How will someone license
    the software and test suite for non-mainstream platforms?  Even when the
    test suite is not available on a platform, is there a OSD-compatible
    license option available?

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