[Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

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[Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Graeme Geldenhuys
Hi,

I'm following the trial between Oracle vs Google and wondered about
the following... Judge Alsup told the jury to assume API's are
copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during
trial. Now if he does rule that API's are copyrightable, how will this
affect the Lazarus and Free Pascal projects? Both the latter projects
copy Embarcadero's API's verbatim.

http://www.osnews.com/story/25918/Google_infringed_Java_copyrights_but_we_don_t_know_if_that_s_illegal
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2012/05/jury-rules-google-violated-copyright-law-google-moves-for-mistrial.ars


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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Hans-Peter Diettrich
Graeme Geldenhuys schrieb:
> Hi,
>
> I'm following the trial between Oracle vs Google and wondered about
> the following... Judge Alsup told the jury to assume API's are
> copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during
> trial. Now if he does rule that API's are copyrightable, how will this
> affect the Lazarus and Free Pascal projects? Both the latter projects
> copy Embarcadero's API's verbatim.

US hosters may be disallowed to make such software available.
US users may be disallowed to import and use such software.

I don't think that these consequences really are wanted ;-)

IMO the difference between copying source files and copying contained
declarations should be respected. The EU applies copyright to source
files, but not to the ideas, interfaces etc. behind some software (no
software patents).

DoDi


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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

michael.vancanneyt
In reply to this post by Graeme Geldenhuys


On Tue, 8 May 2012, Graeme Geldenhuys wrote:

> Hi,
>
> I'm following the trial between Oracle vs Google and wondered about
> the following... Judge Alsup told the jury to assume API's are
> copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during
> trial. Now if he does rule that API's are copyrightable, how will this
> affect the Lazarus and Free Pascal projects? Both the latter projects
> copy Embarcadero's API's verbatim.

Well, not verbatim. There are differences.

Now, if he so judges, that would mean the end of the wine, samba and many
other open or closed source projects.

I suspect that this would be taken to a higher court by the FSF and
other organisations  as Redhat, Linux.org.

They would all have to close shop after such a ruling.

In each case, we are not US-based; a ruling by a US judge does not affect us.

At worst it would mean FPC/Lazarus cannot be used in the US.

Michael.

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Reinier Olislagers
In reply to this post by Graeme Geldenhuys
On 8-5-2012 9:16, Graeme Geldenhuys wrote:

> Hi,
>
> I'm following the trial between Oracle vs Google and wondered about
> the following... Judge Alsup told the jury to assume API's are
> copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during
> trial. Now if he does rule that API's are copyrightable, how will this
> affect the Lazarus and Free Pascal projects? Both the latter projects
> copy Embarcadero's API's verbatim.
>
> http://www.osnews.com/story/25918/Google_infringed_Java_copyrights_but_we_don_t_know_if_that_s_illegal
> http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2012/05/jury-rules-google-violated-copyright-law-google-moves-for-mistrial.ars

On the other hand, apparently EU judges ruled that programming languages
are NOT copyrightable... the extract of the ruling seems to indicate (to
me) that that specifically includes APIs:
http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/eu-court-rules-programming-languages-not-copyrightable/76076

I think a lot more projects will have problems if APIs are deemed
copyrightable and doubt any sane person would rule that... but we are
talking about the legal system... ;)

Suppose it's wait and see...

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Žilvinas Ledas
In reply to this post by Hans-Peter Diettrich
Hello all,

relevant recent news is that EU court ruled that APIs and programming
languages are not copyrightable:
http://developers.slashdot.org/story/12/05/02/229208/eu-court-rules-apis-programming-languages-not-copyrightable

So at least in EU it is totally legal.


Regards,
Žilvinas

On 2012-05-08 11:39, Hans-Peter Diettrich wrote:

> Graeme Geldenhuys schrieb:
>> Hi,
>>
>> I'm following the trial between Oracle vs Google and wondered about
>> the following... Judge Alsup told the jury to assume API's are
>> copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during
>> trial. Now if he does rule that API's are copyrightable, how will this
>> affect the Lazarus and Free Pascal projects? Both the latter projects
>> copy Embarcadero's API's verbatim.
>
> US hosters may be disallowed to make such software available.
> US users may be disallowed to import and use such software.
>
> I don't think that these consequences really are wanted ;-)
>
> IMO the difference between copying source files and copying contained
> declarations should be respected. The EU applies copyright to source
> files, but not to the ideas, interfaces etc. behind some software (no
> software patents).
>
> DoDi
>
>
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>

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Graeme Geldenhuys
In reply to this post by michael.vancanneyt
On 8 May 2012 09:45,  <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Now, if he so judges, that would mean the end of the wine, samba and many
> other open or closed source projects.


Indeed, it will have one hell of a knock-on effect.


> In each case, we are not US-based; a ruling by a US judge does not affect
> us. At worst it would mean FPC/Lazarus cannot be used in the US.

That's always good to know.


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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Graeme Geldenhuys
In reply to this post by Žilvinas Ledas
On 8 May 2012 10:02, Žilvinas Ledas <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> So at least in EU it is totally legal.


Thanks for the link, I'll read that article now.



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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by michael.vancanneyt
[hidden email] wrote:

> On Tue, 8 May 2012, Graeme Geldenhuys wrote:
>
>> Hi,
>>
>> I'm following the trial between Oracle vs Google and wondered about
>> the following... Judge Alsup told the jury to assume API's are
>> copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during
>> trial. Now if he does rule that API's are copyrightable, how will this
>> affect the Lazarus and Free Pascal projects? Both the latter projects
>> copy Embarcadero's API's verbatim.

Before anything else, I want to make it clear that I am critical of
Google's business model, which amounts to "it's probably illegal, it
might be in the common good, it's definitely to our advantage, let's do
it". But I think a bit more clarity from Oracle as to what they're
trying to achieve would be in order: are they trying to protect their
intellectual property, or are they trying to force a precedent?

> Well, not verbatim. There are differences.
>
> Now, if he so judges, that would mean the end of the wine, samba and
> many other open or closed source projects.
>
> I suspect that this would be taken to a higher court by the FSF and
> other organisations  as Redhat, Linux.org.
>
> They would all have to close shop after such a ruling.

Although I think that people would argue that the unix API was based on
work which has ended up in the public domain, and has been extended in
ways that are obvious to anybody "skilled in the art".

Superficially, Oracle can't wreck Linux since they sell an
implementation. However they also own Solaris, and since their high-end
kit works better with Solaris than with Linux my own feeling is that
they'd like more people to use it.

> In each case, we are not US-based; a ruling by a US judge does not
> affect us.
>
> At worst it would mean FPC/Lazarus cannot be used in the US.

In the UK, it could potentially mean extradition without trial: we've
got an extremely lopsided treaty which is now being implemented as the
law, despite the fact that the USA has not ratified it.

In any event, don't plan to go to Florida for your next vacation.

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markMLl .AT. telemetry.co .DOT. uk

[Opinions above are the author's, not those of his employers or colleagues]

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Graeme Geldenhuys
In reply to this post by michael.vancanneyt
On 8 May 2012 09:45,  <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> At worst it would mean FPC/Lazarus cannot be used in the US.


Thinking about it further... I guess even if the judge rules that
API's are copyrightable in the US, Embarcadero would have a hard time
coming after the FPC project.... because the latest Delphi ships with
and uses FPC for its iOS (ARM) support. So in a way Embarcadero is OK
with FPC (excluding Lazarus).


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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Hans-Peter Diettrich
In reply to this post by michael.vancanneyt
[hidden email] schrieb:

> Now, if he so judges, that would mean the end of the wine, samba and
> many other open or closed source projects.

Why that?

> I suspect that this would be taken to a higher court by the FSF and
> other organisations  as Redhat, Linux.org.
>
> They would all have to close shop after such a ruling.
>
> In each case, we are not US-based; a ruling by a US judge does not
> affect us.

Sic!

> At worst it would mean FPC/Lazarus cannot be used in the US.

You remember the PGP case? When the use or export of software is
restricted, other countries can claim the same for their software. The
assumption, that terrorists are too stupid to write or let write good
software for them, is stupid again.

In the last c't magazine I found an side-cut on the German
"Bundestrojaner", a spy software developed for the secret service:

"Since the AV software is booted from a clean CD, and has full control
over the machine, there is no disk space where a rootkit or other
spyware could hide itself."

Millions of taxes, spent for the development of that software, are burnt
by an simple update of already existing software (Linux and AV). <grumble>

DoDi


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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Sven Barth
In reply to this post by Mark Morgan Lloyd
Am 08.05.2012 10:15, schrieb Mark Morgan Lloyd:

>> Well, not verbatim. There are differences.
>>
>> Now, if he so judges, that would mean the end of the wine, samba and
>> many other open or closed source projects.
>>
>> I suspect that this would be taken to a higher court by the FSF and
>> other organisations as Redhat, Linux.org.
>>
>> They would all have to close shop after such a ruling.
>
> Although I think that people would argue that the unix API was based on
> work which has ended up in the public domain, and has been extended in
> ways that are obvious to anybody "skilled in the art".
>
> Superficially, Oracle can't wreck Linux since they sell an
> implementation. However they also own Solaris, and since their high-end
> kit works better with Solaris than with Linux my own feeling is that
> they'd like more people to use it.

It's not about Oracle wrecking everyone, but companies that originally
developed some API wrecking those that reimplemented it. Especially the
Wine or ReactOS projects are "good" candidates for this (as Samba and
Mono cooperate more or less with Microsoft I don't see that much
problems for them).

Regards,
Sven

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Graeme Geldenhuys
Graeme Geldenhuys wrote:
> On 8 May 2012 09:45,  <[hidden email]> wrote:>> At worst it would mean FPC/Lazarus cannot be used in the US.
>
> Thinking about it further... I guess even if the judge rules thatAPI's are copyrightable in the US, Embarcadero would have a hard timecoming after the FPC project.... because the latest Delphi ships withand uses FPC for its iOS (ARM) support. So in a way Embarcadero is OKwith FPC (excluding Lazarus).

Definitely not a safe conclusion. Embarcadero could argue that they
owned the IP that FPC was implementing, and were using the FPC compiler
whilst at the same time preparing a legal attack.

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Sven Barth
Sven Barth wrote:

>> Superficially, Oracle can't wreck Linux since they sell an
>> implementation. However they also own Solaris, and since their high-end
>> kit works better with Solaris than with Linux my own feeling is that
>> they'd like more people to use it.
>
> It's not about Oracle wrecking everyone, but companies that originally
> developed some API wrecking those that reimplemented it. Especially the
> Wine or ReactOS projects are "good" candidates for this (as Samba and
> Mono cooperate more or less with Microsoft I don't see that much
> problems for them).

But if Google fight all the way to the USA Supreme Court and lose, it
will constitute a precedent: whatever Oracle's intentions.

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Mark Morgan Lloyd
In reply to this post by Hans-Peter Diettrich
Hans-Peter Diettrich wrote:

> In the last c't magazine I found an side-cut on the German
> "Bundestrojaner", a spy software developed for the secret service:
>
> "Since the AV software is booted from a clean CD, and has full control
> over the machine, there is no disk space where a rootkit or other
> spyware could hide itself."

Never a safe assumption: a rootkit can hide itself in Flash, and in
particular can hide itself in the "hidden" System Management Mode BIOS
space (Phrack 65).

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[Opinions above are the author's, not those of his employers or colleagues]

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Santiago A.
In reply to this post by Žilvinas Ledas
El 08/05/2012 10:02, Žilvinas Ledas escribió:
> Hello all,
>
> relevant recent news is that EU court ruled that APIs and programming
> languages are not copyrightable:
> http://developers.slashdot.org/story/12/05/02/229208/eu-court-rules-apis-programming-languages-not-copyrightable
>
> So at least in EU it is totally legal.

... so far.

There is a strong pressure on EU to sign ACTA.

In fact, many countries in EU have signed ACTA bilaterally
 
http://mashable.com/2012/01/27/22-eu-countries-ratify-acta-key-parliament-member-calls-it-a-charade/

It still must be ratified by EU parliament, but...

The game is, "We, Commission,  will ask you, EU Parliament, to ratify
it. If you don't, we will ask you again in a few months. If you don't,
we will ask you again in a few months. If you don't, we will ask you
again in a few months. If you don't, we will ask you again in a few
months.....


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[hidden email]


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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

t.wieckowski
2012/5/8 Žilvinas Ledas <[hidden email]>:
> Hello all,
>
> relevant recent news is that EU court ruled that APIs and programming
> languages are not copyrightable:
> http://developers.slashdot.org/story/12/05/02/229208/eu-court-rules-apis-programming-languages-not-copyrightable
>
> So at least in EU it is totally legal.

if so, and SAS code "functionality" can't be protected by copyright,
what about functionality of GPL'ed code (analogously R-project) ? it
also can't be protected (if source code is visible) ?

best regards
tw

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Lukasz Sokol
In reply to this post by Mark Morgan Lloyd
On 08/05/2012 10:00, Mark Morgan Lloyd wrote:

> Hans-Peter Diettrich wrote:
>
>> In the last c't magazine I found an side-cut on the German
>> "Bundestrojaner", a spy software developed for the secret service:
>>
>> "Since the AV software is booted from a clean CD, and has full
>> control over the machine, there is no disk space where a rootkit or
>> other spyware could hide itself."
>
> Never a safe assumption: a rootkit can hide itself in Flash, and in
> particular can hide itself in the "hidden" System Management Mode
> BIOS space (Phrack 65).
>

Hans grumbled on this in next line ;)

L.


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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Andrew Brunner
In reply to this post by Graeme Geldenhuys
Folllow the logic.  This trial is about theft.  It's not about the API.
Having API files that include verbatim code issued by Oracle are issued under a pretense.  That pretense is what binds users of Java code to the licencing of the API by Oracle.

Oracle is telling google that that it is UNACCEPTABLE for google to take creative ownership over Java.  This problem goes far beyond copying of some API.  Google as made and Oracle product - and Oracle is not happy. 

FPC and it's core design have been around prior to Embarcadero's purchase of Delphi from Inprise.  At the point of purchase Embarcadero was responsible for objecting to FPC 
and they could have avoided said purchase.  

Both FPC and Lazarus predate Embarcadero's Delphi.  So any verbatim code copying would have to be relatively recent.   Since Lazarus  is cross platform, only Windows based widgets would be the source of ANY potential threat to ligation.  So Lazarus worst case scenero is that only PART of the project could EVER be called into question. 

If they ever had a problem with say the Windows widgets I suspect the community at large would defend this project tooth and nail and a suit against Lazarus or FPC would probably cost them BIGTIME in PR points.

Recent versions of Delphi come with some parts FPC or Lazarus, this fact alone says signals their acceptance of FPC and Lazarus.
 
IMO, it is Embarcadero  that would be worred about the Free software foundation come after them for the use of code by Lazarus or FPC.

Lastly, API stands for Application Programming Interface.  So in order to Interface with an API, both sides of the code MUST be identical.  While this conversation started with API, I'm telling you this has nothing to do Lazarus or FPC.

 

On Tue, May 8, 2012 at 2:16 AM, Graeme Geldenhuys <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi,

I'm following the trial between Oracle vs Google and wondered about
the following... Judge Alsup told the jury to assume API's are
copyrightable - something Alsup still has to determine later during
trial. Now if he does rule that API's are copyrightable, how will this
affect the Lazarus and Free Pascal projects? Both the latter projects
copy Embarcadero's API's verbatim.

 

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Felipe Monteiro de Carvalho
In reply to this post by Santiago A.
On Tue, May 8, 2012 at 11:25 AM, Santiago A. <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> So at least in EU it is totally legal.
> ... so far.
> There is a strong pressure on EU to sign ACTA.
> In fact, many countries in EU have signed ACTA bilaterally
> http://mashable.com/2012/01/27/22-eu-countries-ratify-acta-key-parliament-member-calls-it-a-charade/
> It still must be ratified by EU parliament, but...

Well, there is also a strong pressure not to sign ACTA. It was given
as a sure fact that Poland would sign Acta this february, but ....
then people started protesting in the streets non-stop. Even while it
was -20 there were large protests and the government eventually gave
up. They couldn't face their popularity falling and called off the
signing just 1 day before the date or something like that. Ever since
there was no more talk about it and pretty much no politician would
say he is for ACTA now. Something similar could happen everywhere in
Europe.

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Re: [Lazarus] Embarcadero vs Lazarus/FPC (Oracle vs Google)

Reinier Olislagers
In reply to this post by Andrew Brunner
On 8-5-2012 14:07, Andrew Brunner wrote:

> Folllow the logic.  This trial is about theft.  It's not about the API.
> Having API files that include verbatim code issued by Oracle are issued
> under a pretense.  That pretense is what binds users of Java code to
> the licencing of the API by Oracle.
>
> Oracle is telling google that that it is UNACCEPTABLE for google to take
> creative ownership over Java.  This problem goes far beyond copying of
> some API.  Google as made and Oracle product - and Oracle is not happy.
>
> FPC and it's core design have been around prior
> to Embarcadero's purchase of Delphi from Inprise.  At the point of
> purchase Embarcadero was responsible for objecting to FPC
> and they could have avoided said purchase.  
>
> Both FPC and Lazarus predate Embarcadero's Delphi.  So any verbatim code
> copying would have to be relatively recent.   Since Lazarus  is cross
> platform, only Windows based widgets would be the source of ANY
> potential threat to ligation.  So Lazarus worst case scenero is that
> only PART of the project could EVER be called into question.
>
> If they ever had a problem with say the Windows widgets I suspect the
> community at large would defend this project tooth and nail and a suit
> against Lazarus or FPC would probably cost them BIGTIME in PR points.
>
> Recent versions of Delphi come with some parts FPC or Lazarus, this fact
> alone says signals their acceptance of FPC and Lazarus.
>  
> IMO, it is Embarcadero  that would be worred about the Free software
> foundation come after them for the use of code by Lazarus or FPC.
I don't agree with many of your standpoints/reasoning, but us in this
list arguing about these things won't help much I think... let's first
see what the judge over there says.

Also, as others have said, I think FPC/Lazarus wouldn't be the only ones
with a sudden problem; ReactOS, Samba, Wine, Ghostscript, perhaps those
Windows wireless card Linux driver writers (if you understand what I
mean) may all be in the same boat.

>
> Lastly, API stands for Application Programming Interface.  So in order
> to Interface with an API, both sides of the code MUST be identical.
That's certainly true... although variable names could differ I suppose ;)

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