Open Source

The successful completion of this project will result in a product that is potentially commercially exploitable.

A variety of open source licences are available each with their own particular freedoms and restrictions.  The licence I choose to use on this project may have an effects on the level of participation the project receives.  I could choose to use a licence that restricts people from using the software for commercial purposes without paying for a further licence.  I believe that such a licence would put off contributors.  Depending on the open source software that this project chooses to incorporate and extend it may be the case that the project will be forced to adopt a particular open source licence.

It would seem to be most sensible to ask the project contributors which licence they wish to use.  I will therefore conduct a poll soon after the project starts.

I currently plan to develop the project under the Open Software License 3.0 (OSL-3.0) licence. This licence does not restrict people from using this software for commercial purposes however if they modify the software they must also publish their modified source code and they must also use the same open source software licence in all future developments.

The intellectual property created by this project will be held by a UK based ethical charity.  As the copyright owner of this open source project this charity could exercise the right to issue commercial licences that do not require future developers to keep to using the the Open Software Licence 3.0 and will allow these potential future developers to redevelop their software potentially for commercial purposes without publishing their source code.  But I now believe ever creating a system as powerful as the HEMSEYE project that is not open source and community owned and controlled would be a grave mistake.  I need advice.

Advice on using the OSL-3.0 licence and its potential commercialisation is consistent with open source principles based on the advice given at this website http://rosenlaw.com/OSL3.0-explained.htm.

Some open source projects become not for profit charities.

I also thing that this software project’s licence should also includes a further restriction to prevent its use as part of a weapon or in the development of weapons.

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