[linux-audio-user] Re: Free Software vs. Open Source: Where do*you* stand?
cesare at poeticstudios.com
Tue Feb 21 23:44:27 EST 2006
>I don't own the letters A-Z or a-z. I don't own the digits 0-9. I don't
>own any words in the Oxford English dictionary.
>I can create and copyright a unique collection of those words ( an novel,
>short story, new article, lyrics, etc.)
>A computer program is created as a collection of words - a unique collection
>of those words, that when compiled and executed on a target OS will
>(hopefully!) perform some function(s).
Sorry, but this is *not* true.
What if I own a patent for what could be the only possible way to write
a fast realtime FFT algorithm?
Nobody else can write an application that does the FFT at that speed.
This is science (computer science, indeed).
This is knowledge, and should be free.
>To say that a software author cannot "own" that software nor have copyrights
>to it is the same as to say an author / poet / screenwriter / columnist /
>etc. cannot have any control over his work (or get paid for doing it) once
>it is finished.
>On Tue, Feb 21, 2006 at 07:42:26PM -0600, Jan Depner wrote:
>>If you want to compare apples to apples instead of
>>apples to colostomy bags how about explaining how software is different
>>from your latest song, novel, poem, picture.
>A computer program can be written as a big integer. Moreover, a
>computer program has no representation that is not a big integer.
>A song, novel, poem, picture, all have representations that are not
>integers. In particular, they are objects (though I contend
>that the relevant fact is that they are not integers).
>Since there is no difference between some big integer and a computer
>program, you must defend a copyright against either use. You have a
>computer program and I am doing math. I email you my results, and it
>contains the number of your program. I am using your program without
>a license. After all, *you have no way to tell that I am not*.
>Alternatively, a good way to make illegal copies of software would be
>to send an email that demonstrated some math. At a predetermined point,
>some number would be the program in question. You couldn't claim
>copyright infringment, because you have *no way of telling that I'm
>not doing math*.
>Philisophically, if you accept ownership of software, I don't see how you
>can not accept ownership of numbers without somehow appealing to the
>intent of the user.
>Artistic objects you mentioned like the above have representations
>that are not integers. Though I can have a digital representation of
>a painting that is an integer, I can also have an object that bears no
>sensible mapping to the integers. So I argue that unlike computer
>programs, things that are merely "digitizable" are very different from
>things that are only "digital".
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