[sane-devel] Please give me some help to solve the license issues in using sane

David Lochrin dlochrin at d2.net.au
Fri Jun 13 06:23:35 UTC 2008

On Wednesday 11 June 2008 09:55, Alessandro Zummo wrote:
>  I was talking about a possible proprietary sane backend
>  scenario:
>  GPL backend + proprietary decoding libs. A manufacturer would choose
>  compatible terms for this case and it is not forbidden by the GPL.

   I think this thread is drawing to a close, and various posts have proposed ways in which GPL and proprietary code might coexist with varying degrees of comfort.

   Clearly (I think) there would be no violation of the GPL if a manufacturer embodied proprietary decoding or other functions in the scanner firmware and used a GPL backend.  This would have the additional advantage that just one hardware model would suit any O/S for which someone was interested enough to write a suitable backend.

   But having said that, a user's overall "freedom" would still be limited to exactly the same extent if the manufacturer supplied a completely proprietary SANE backend for the O/S (and there are other, even less desirable, options).  

   So it seems to me that the larger issue concerns interoperability of hardware and O/S.  The GPL is great for guaranteeing interoperability of software packages, but is perhaps not so effective for hardware-O/S interoperability.


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