[Discuss] curious statement on github about oshwa certiification

Javier Serrano Javier.Serrano at cern.ch
Fri Jul 8 12:28:09 UTC 2016

On 07/08/2016 02:08 PM, Javier Serrano wrote:
> On 07/08/2016 01:37 PM, Matt Maier wrote:
>> ... so "hardware licenses" in open source hardware aren't nearly as
>> useful as open source software licenses. 
> Of course licensors and licensees should bear in mind that while the end
> product in software (the binary) is subject to copyright law, the end
> product in hardware (the piece of hardware) isn't in most cases.
> However, I can look at the sources of the Linux kernel and write my own
> functionally equivalent kernel from scratch using everything I learnt,
> without infringing the GPL that protects the sources of the original
> kernel, exactly the same process you described for hardware. So the
> difference is not so big after all. 

Sorry Matt, I agree with you more than I managed to convey. Most of the
economic activity in both software and hardware involves distribution of
products (binaries in the case of software, or tangible products in the
case of hardware). Because (simplifying quite a bit here) tangible
products are not subject to copyright, you cannot in principle attach
obligations to the act of distributing them. That's a big difference.



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