May 26, 2005
Third podcast interview: Lawrence Rosen
Larry has served as the general counsel and secretary of the Open Source Initiative, authored the book "Open Source Licensing: Software Freedom and Intellectual Property Law", and advises Black Duck Software and SpikeSource, Inc. We discussed the "based upon" language in the GPL and derivative works for about 15 minutes, then indemnification, due diligence in mergers and acquisitions (Open Source and proprietary), audits, attorney/client privilege, the effects of Open Source and Open Standards on policies about patents, and more.
Some related links:
- Larry's book, " Open Source Licensing : Software Freedom and Intellectual Property Law"
- Open Source Initiative
Posted by danb at 04:04 PM
May 21, 2005
Second podcast interview: Joel Spolsky
Joel has the perspective of one who worked for Microsoft back in the 1990's and develops and sells proprietary software today. We talked about developers keeping track of where their code comes from and watching out for GPL code that shouldn't be there, why developers who read Slashdot and Eric Raymond are more likely to be at least somewhat aware of copyright issues than their managers who don't, differences between Windows and Unix when it comes to combining code (especially back in the days when the GPL was written), access to Microsoft source code, economics of Open Source, and more.
Some related links:
- Joel's book, "Joel on Software: And on Diverse and Occasionally Related Matters That Will Prove of Interest to Software Developers, Designers, and Managers, and to Those Who, Whether by Good Fortune or Ill Luck, Work with Them in Some Capacity"
- Eric Raymond's book, "The Art of UNIX Programming"
- Joel's "Strategy Letter V"
- Joel's detailed explanation about not buying municipal bonds from retail brokers
Posted by danb at 05:09 PM
May 19, 2005
New podcast from Software Garden - Linda Hamel
I've started a new podcast aimed at people interested in software licensing, open source, and similar issues. It's called "Dan Bricklin's Sofware Licensing Podcast". I will be posting recordings of interviews and other material in MP3 format suitable for listening on a music player (like the Apple iPod and its ilk) or directly on your personal computer (if it's sound-enabled with MP3-playing software, as most newer ones are).
You can learn about new "shows" by reading this weblog, or by subscribing to the podcast's RSS feed using software such as iPodder, iPodderX, Doppler, etc. A list of shows is also available on this page. The main Software Garden podcast page is www.softwaregarden.com/podcast.
The people I hope to interview are deeply involved in legal issues or software development. The first show is an interview with Commonwealth of Massachusetts Information Technology Division General Counsel Linda Hamel. For over 30 minutes she discusses her experience as a lawyer of the Commonwealth's move to encourage the use of Open Source in the mix of software they buy and commission. She talks about how government entities, like the State, have a different risk profile when it comes to Open Source than many commercial entities. She goes over some of her own learning experiences. Some of what she says fits in very nicely with the theories presented in another podcast (on ITConversations) of Geoffrey Moore's "Open Source Has Crossed the Chasm...Now What?" which describes situations when Open Source is the appropriate choice for companies. Linda ends with: "...[with respect to Open Source Licensing] the culture is reflected in the legal documents and if you don't understand the culture it's going to be very hard for you to understand the legal documents."
Linda has posted a lot of useful material on the ITD website, www.mass.gov/itd, especially in the "Policies, Standards & Legal" section.
Posted by danb at 11:51 AM
May 09, 2005
Podcast about Open Source business models
ITConversations has a new podcast from the Open Source Business Conference 2005: Larry Augustin, CEO of Medsphere, an open source software company that delivers a sophisticated healthcare information system, talks about "The Next Wave of Open Source: Applications". It's 42 minutes long and interesting. By "applications" he means enterprise-level stuff like CRM and ERP, not desktop stuff like word processors. He even goes so far as to take Siebel's income statement and see how it would be changed if they were an Open Source company like JBoss or his company. The keys: Open Source cuts your marketing cost substantially (he explains in detail), and opens up small and medium sized businesses as a huge potential market.
Posted by danb at 10:38 AM