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  1.    #1  
    Could homebrew patches make coding at Palm tricky to keep them out of legal hot water for stealing?

    First, I think the homebrew guys are a God send! Second, I'm not a programmer. I wonder, is Palm playing nice and not ripping off homebrew patches, as most homebrew patches are "published" with GPL licenses or something similar. Could this be slowing Palm's efforts to write quality, unbloatted, elegant patchs? Or are they intentionally handcuffed by Sprint?
  2. #2  
    The reason why "patches" exist is because home brewers are not allowed to rewrite existing palm code according to open source agreement. So essentially home brewers are doing exactly how it sounds. "Patching" the existing code.
  3. #3  
    Palm, and anyone else for that matter, are free to take the patches and do whatever they want with them: MIT Open Source License - webOS-Patches - WebOS Internals
    Quote Originally Posted by Brain_ReCall
    I'm an Embedded Software Engineer. My idea of a Good User Interface is printf().
  4.    #4  
    So the homebrew patches and the original Palm code are 2 different languages?

    If not, then Palm can't just incorporate the patch code into their own files without permission, correct? Is this potentially hampering Palm efforts to easily and cleanly "fix" things?

    I gather the MIT GNU license says they can't sell it and must allow others to use the code with the same license conditions. If Palm doesn't want to incorporate this kind of license into portions of their own software, I guess they'll have to find a different way to fix things. Lawyers and money goons are probably involved somewhere. Only future webOS updates will tell.
    Last edited by ElPhantasmo; 11/10/2009 at 11:17 PM.
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by ElPhantasmo View Post
    So the homebrew patches and the original Palm code are 2 different languages?

    If not, then Palm can't just incorporate the patch code into their own files without permission, correct? Is this potentially hampering Palm efforts to easily and cleanly "fix" things?
    Wrong. Patch files and original Palm code are the same language, but only include the chagnes.

    And because most of the patches (all except one, I believe) are MIT licensed, then by posting them, anyone has permission to use them, as is already said.
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    #6  
    "Further, by submitting via the above methods you automatically agree the patch will be licensed under the MIT Open Source License. This is to allow Palm to use the patches as-is to incorporate them into future webOS releases. At this time, patches that are not licensed under the MIT Open Source License can not be included for distribution in the webOS-Patches feed which is used by Preware, WebOS Quick Install and PreLoad."
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by ElPhantasmo View Post
    So the homebrew patches and the original Palm code are 2 different languages?

    If not, then Palm can't just incorporate the patch code into their own files without permission, correct? Is this potentially hampering Palm efforts to easily and cleanly "fix" things?

    I gather the MIT GNU license says they can't sell it and must allow others to use the code with the same license conditions. If Palm doesn't want to incorporate this kind of license into portions of their own software, I guess they'll have to find a different way to fix things. Lawyers and money goons are probably involved somewhere. Only future webOS updates will tell.
    MIT license and GNU Public License are two completely different licenses.

    We have chosen the MIT license *specifically* so Palm can incorporate the patches into webOS with no problems at all.

    If we had chosen the GPL, this would not have been possible. That's *why* we chose the MIT license.

    Note that if an author of a patch does *not* specify a license, then Palm *cannot* use the code. Only a license like the MIT license allows for open source that can be used in commercial products like webOS without making them open source as a result.

    -- Rod
    WebOS Internals and Preware Founder and Developer
    You may wish to donate by Paypal to donations @ webos-internals.org if you find our work useful.
    All donations go back into development.
    www.webos-internals.org twitter.com/webosinternals facebook.com/webosinternals
  8.    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by rwhitby View Post
    MIT license and GNU Public License are two completely different licenses.

    We have chosen the MIT license *specifically* so Palm can incorporate the patches into webOS with no problems at all.

    If we had chosen the GPL, this would not have been possible. That's *why* we chose the MIT license.

    Note that if an author of a patch does *not* specify a license, then Palm *cannot* use the code. Only a license like the MIT license allows for open source that can be used in commercial products like webOS without making them open source as a result.

    -- Rod
    So Palm COULD sell/lease... their software in the future as long as no one is blocked from the MIT licensed portions of it?
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by ElPhantasmo View Post
    So Palm COULD sell/lease... their software in the future as long as no one is blocked from the MIT licensed portions of it?
    Have a read of the MIT license. It is not viral like the GPL.

    -- Rod
    WebOS Internals and Preware Founder and Developer
    You may wish to donate by Paypal to donations @ webos-internals.org if you find our work useful.
    All donations go back into development.
    www.webos-internals.org twitter.com/webosinternals facebook.com/webosinternals
  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by ElPhantasmo View Post
    So Palm COULD sell/lease... their software in the future as long as no one is blocked from the MIT licensed portions of it?
    Yes.

    Copyright (c) <year> <copyright holders>

    Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person
    obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation
    files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without
    restriction, including without limitation the rights to use,
    copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell
    copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the
    Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following
    conditions:

    The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be
    included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

    THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND,
    EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES
    OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND
    NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT
    HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY,
    WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING
    FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR
    OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.
    Quote Originally Posted by Brain_ReCall
    I'm an Embedded Software Engineer. My idea of a Good User Interface is printf().
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by rwhitby View Post
    We have chosen the MIT license *specifically* so Palm can incorporate the patches into webOS with no problems at all.

    If we had chosen the GPL, this would not have been possible.
    Even though I appreciate the explicit use of the MIT license, are we sure that Palm couldn't incorporate the changes legally anyway? Even if we could argue copyright to the literal .patch file, the full source file with patch applied is a different work altogether. Palm wouldn't be distributing the patch file itself. Further, Palm's javascript isn't open source and it's copyrighted, and they haven't granted license to us to create a derivative work. And while I've not read all the agreements I accepted when I bought the phone, I'm guessing we've violated specific terms of use somewhere along the way when we hacked into our phones to get access to the source code.

    Could someone with malicious intent really hamstring Palm by creating patches and publishing them with the GPL or some other license? That seems like a stretch.

    It's just a technical question really, since by explicitly chosing the MIT license we intentionally give up rights to the .patch files. Just curious if someone knows for certain that a GPL'd .patch would hamstring Palm.
  12. #12  
    GPL is a copyright-based license.

    Palm can implement anything they please, and whether or not some end-user has previously implemented the same thing has no bearing unless Palm was to actually copy GPL code (which they already have processes in place to prevent).

    Copyrights are very different from patents.

    -- Rod

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