ask for APSL? for real this time?

Joshua 'Schwa' Gargus schwa at
Thu Jan 15 16:35:05 UTC 2004

Hi Andrew,

You wrote:

> No.  Code that is not covered by the viral aspect of Squeak-L may be 
> licensed in any way.  But you are presuming that this is so, and for 
> code developed in Squeak, there is simply no practice way to do that.


> Code not developed in Squeak can be do distributed.
> Code written in Squeak cannot be safely so distributed absent 
> affirmative proof that the code was independently developed.  You are 
> not capable of maintaining a clean room for all Squeak code, nor do we 
> have any team of individuals capable of executing code development 
> under a clean room.

Can you comment on the difference between the notion of "derived work"
that is apparently part of copyright law (and whatever viral
implications it might have), and the explicitly viral aspects of the
Squeak License (ie: section 2 of the SqueakL, talking about "Modified

I seem to recall you saying at some point that these are two separate
issues.  Is this the source of our problem here?

Let me elaborate.  The SqueakL explicitly says that its viral aspects
are only invoked when the "Modified Software" modifies
1. existing class objects or their relationships
2. the VM

So, a naive reader (me) might think that "as long as I publish changes
that I make to existing classes, I can release the rest of my code
under whatever license I want."

However, you have made it clear that this is not so, IIRC because some
other provisions of copyright law take effect.  Could you explain this?

Why wouldn't this line of thinking also apply to a commercial
Smalltalk?  For example, if you write some code in Commercial
Smalltalk X, would you not then be required to release the code under
the same license as your development environment?  This seems absurd,
and if it were the case, I would expect that no lawyer anywhere would
ever advise their client that it is OK to develop code in any

Is there something specific about the interaction between copyright
law and the SqueakL that makes this scenario not work for code written
in Squeak, but OK for code written in Commercial Smalltalk X?

I am confused.

One more example...

> >This means that SqueakMap itself for example is a problem...
> Goran -- I'm not sure for what you are fighting.  Any person could take 
> SqueakMap tomorrow, change a comment, and relicense it under Squeak-L.  
> the danger is, if it *IS* derived, for the poor saps who opt for the 
> MIT prong for use outside of Squeak.

Can you please define "derived" in this context?  Is it based on the wording
of section 2 of the SqueakL, or some other aspect of copyright law?


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