KnowledgeHives Open Source License

Bruce Perens bruce at
Tue Sep 2 01:17:44 UTC 2008

Hi Sebastian,

This is a good example of a "Disclosed Source Code" license as opposed 
to an "Open Source" license. It looks good for your business plan as 
stated. Your business plan isn't consistent with making the product Open 
Source, which would require that all parts be modifiable. It would be 
appropriate for you to refer to your product as "Disclosed Source Code". 
OSI approval obviously isn't necessary unless you call it "Open Source".

I am not on the OSI board and would not be voting. I created the Open 
Source Definition, the rule-set for licenses, about 7 months before OSI 


    Bruce Perens

Sebastian Kruk wrote:
> Hello,
> I would like to submit for review the KnowledgeHives Open Source License.
> This license is an extension to Qt License (extended entries have been 
> marked by [*]).
> The rationale behind this modifications is following.
> In the near future my company will deliver a search and discovery 
> service. We want to allow access to the code based on an open source 
> license, and still have pretty tight protection of our IP and our 
> business model.
> The changes introduced to Qt license are suppose to ensure that no one 
> will modify those fragments of code which ensures that all instances 
> of our system will contribute gathered information back to the main 
> instance. Additionally we want to be notified about derived versions 
> of our software as well.
> The reason why we decided to deliver our code on open source was to 
> ensure the users how we handle information about them, and that no 
> hidden actions are performed.
> We would appreciate if you could tell us if our license with these 
> modifications to the Qt license can still pass as an open source license.
> Thank you in advance,
> Best regards,
> Sebastian Kruk
> KH Open Source License
> Copyright (C) 2008
> Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute this license document.
> The intent of this license is to establish freedom to share and change 
> the software regulated by this license under the open source model.
> This license applies to any software containing a notice placed by the 
> copyright holder saying that it may be distributed under the terms of 
> the Q Public License version 1.0. Such software is herein referred to 
> as the Software. This license covers modification and distribution of 
> the Software, use of third-party application programs based on the 
> Software, and development of free software which uses the Software.
> Granted Rights
>     1. You are granted the non-exclusive rights set forth in this 
> license provided you agree to and comply with any and all conditions 
> in this license. Whole or partial distribution of the Software, or 
> software items that link with the Software, in any form signifies 
> acceptance of this license.
>     2. You may copy and distribute the Software in unmodified form 
> provided that the entire package, including - but not restricted to - 
> copyright, trademark notices and disclaimers, as released by the 
> initial developer of the Software, is distributed.
>     3. You may make modifications to the Software and distribute your 
> modifications, in a form that is separate from the Software, such as 
> patches. The following restrictions apply to modifications:
>         a. Modifications must not alter or remove any copyright 
> notices in the Software.
>         b. When modifications to the Software are released under this 
> license, a non-exclusive royalty-free right is granted to the initial 
> developer of the Software to distribute your modification in future 
> versions of the Software provided such versions remain available under 
> these terms in addition to any other license(s) of the initial developer.
>     [*]    c. You are not allowed to make modifications or apply 
> patches, in any form or shape, to the routines related in anyway to 
> the replication routines, which ensure replication of content to 
> central service; any modifications or patches for 
> these routines have to be first submitted to the initial developer of 
> Software for approval and publishing
>     4. You may distribute machine-executable forms of the Software or 
> machine-executable forms of modified versions of the Software, 
> provided that you meet these restrictions:
>         a. You must include this license document in the distribution.
>         b. You must ensure that all recipients of the 
> machine-executable forms are also able to receive the complete 
> machine-readable source code to the distributed Software, including 
> all modifications, without any charge beyond the costs of data 
> transfer, and place prominent notices in the distribution explaining 
> this.
>         c. You must ensure that all modifications included in the 
> machine-executable forms are available under the terms of this license.
>     [*]    d. You must ensure that content replication routine 
> libraries are distributed and enabled by default together with your 
> machine-executable distribution
>     5. You may use the original or modified versions of the Software 
> to compile, link and run application programs legally developed by you 
> or by others.
>     6. You may develop application programs, reusable components and 
> other software items that link with the original or modified versions 
> of the Software. These items, when distributed, are subject to the 
> following requirements:
>         a. You must ensure that all recipients of machine-executable 
> forms of these items are also able to receive and use the complete 
> machine-readable source code to the items without any charge beyond 
> the costs of data transfer.
>         b. You must explicitly license all recipients of your items to 
> use and re-distribute original and modified versions of the items in 
> both machine-executable and source code forms. The recipients must be 
> able to do so without any charges whatsoever, and they must be able to 
> re-distribute to anyone they choose.
>     [*]    c. You must notify the initial developer of the Software 
> about delivering any kind of software derived from the original or 
> modified versions of the Software.
>         d. If the items are not available to the general public, and 
> the initial developer of the Software requests a copy of the items, 
> then you must supply one.
> Limitations of Liability
> In no event shall the initial developers or copyright holders be 
> liable for any damages whatsoever, including - but not restricted to - 
> lost revenue or profits or other direct, indirect, special, incidental 
> or consequential damages, even if they have been advised of the 
> possibility of such damages, except to the extent invariable law, if 
> any, provides otherwise.
> No Warranty
> The Software and this license document are provided AS IS with NO 
> Choice of Law
> This license is governed by the Laws of XXXXX. Disputes shall be 
> settled by XXXX.
> Disclaimer
> This license has been based on the Qt Public License (QPL) 

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