[This is no longer particularly important]

On Mon, Nov 03, 2003 at 09:37:49AM -0500, Etienne Gagnon wrote:
> Andrew Suffield wrote:
> >Kaffe is essentially a filter that takes java
> >bytecode as input and emits program code on the fly (this is
> >technically incomplete, but effectively equivalent for the sake of
> >this argument). The input to a filter cannot be a derivative work of
> >it; we don't *care* about the state of the output (which is also not a
> >derivative work in this case, but I'll skip the reasoning).
> I can live with this view (even though an argument could be made about
> the fact that many VMs (I do not know specifically about Kaffe) internally
> use bytecodes from the class library to handle internal data structures
> [think of a just-in-time compiler written in Java; it would really be
> part of the VM, not merely processed input, IMHO]).

I considered this briefly, but the result of any such process is never
copied or distributed[0], so copyright isn't directly applicable at
all - we don't need to worry about it.

The GPL doesn't place any restrictions on how you use works it covers,
only on how you distribute them, so there's no possibility of trouble
from that side.

Freakish maybe-invalid licenses that try to place restrictions on use
may have trouble here, but those aren't a concern as far as GPL
compatibility is concerned; the worst case is that you have some
non-distributable data in memory, where nothing will try to distribute
it. We'll probably judge them to be non-DFSG-free in their own right,
but that's an entirely separate issue.

[0] Who wants to speculate on the legal status of core dumps?

    I don't think we can really do anything useful here, since it's
    all mixed up with the input fed to the process at runtime, but it
    might make an interesting diversion.

  .''`.  ** Debian GNU/Linux ** | Andrew Suffield
 : :' :  http://www.debian.org/ |
 `. `'                          |
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