License Proliferation

Robin 'Roblimo' Miller robin at
Fri Sep 2 13:38:06 UTC 2005

> That's an interesting idea, but I'd suggest that simply using "number 
> of projects that use the license" as the criterion is not the best 
> approach - it simply shows what's trendy. The test of a license is 
> surely how many people are willing to participate in the project 
> that's licensed under it, both as developers and as deployers. 

No reason not to break that data out, too. But just as looking at trends 
tells you what is "trendy," looking the number and users of projects 
licensed under a particular license may also produce meaningless data.
Example: Let's set up a hypothetical project called ""  
that's  so wildly popular that I've just finished writing a book* about 
it .  Now let's look at another hypothetical project called PREDICT that 
helps track/predict satellite orbits.

PREDICT will never have as many users as, but this 
doesn't mean the GPL -- PREDICT's license -- is less valuable or viable 
than the one uses.

A project's popularity may have nothing to do with its license.

- Robin 'Roblimo' Miller
Editor in Chief, OSTG

* 'Point & Click' will be available from all major (and 
many minor) booksellers in mid-November.

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