bobyrne at statesoft.ie
Fri Apr 8 11:19:59 UTC 2005
This is an interesting discussion on the License Wizard, and I'd like
to put in a slightly different take on it.
It seems to me that creating a complete and closed tree of questions
is a horrendously complex task, and will be difficult to maintain as
new licenses come on stream.
Instead come up with a classification system with several different
categories, each license rated on each category, and a linear set of
questions asking the users opinion on each category.
Copyleft (viral, riciprocal, whatever you want to call it...)
Patent-based termination clauses
Derivatives as Original + Diff or just the derivative
Each category may have just one question or possibly a short series of
The result is a matrix of the user's priorities. This can be matched
against the known licenses and a list of candidate licenses
presented. (I think it is very unrealistic for us to expect to be
able to recommend a single license from an automated wizard, the best
we can reasonably do is eliminate all those that definitely do not
match the user's requirements and try to order the rest.)
Each license owner can be asked to provide a rating for their license
for each of the classifications. (Possibly to be debated here).
If a new classification emerges it can be added later.
I think that is a workable idea that will provide some support for
people choosing licenses without placing too great a burden on
license submitters or the OSI.
It may also lead to other ways of browsing licenses, such as a
... and without making it sound too much like a silver bullet, it
might encourage license submitters to think carefully about how their
license is different to existing licenses.
More information about the License-discuss