Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] The Geotools fork and current relicensing discussion [was Re: The importance of a project's license]

2012-07-27 Thread Jeff McKenna
On 12-07-27 3:09 PM, Adrian Custer wrote:
 [2] I personally find the failure to make Martin a charter member as one
 glaring indictment of OSGeo and its community, revealing the inwards
 looking favoritism and lack of exploration beyond. There are few people
 as passionate, knowledgeable, or productive as Martin about free
 geospatial software so the fact that OSGeo has not managed to pull in
 his energy reveals both that the community fails to include some great
 folk and that OSGeo does not actually manage to represent the interests
 of 'free geospatial software' in general.

I have worked with Martin several years now through the Benchmarking
exercises; I agree his passion and knowledge is top notch.  It is
unfortunate that he slipped through the cracks for Charter Membership,
and it would be my honor to nominate him (but we just missed the 2012
charter elections).  You can also nominate him, so, we are all to blame
here; it happens, we have so many talented people in the community.  My
honest apologies to Martin, and others that feel this way; we appreciate
your community involvement so much.


Jeff McKenna
MapServer Consulting and Training Services

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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] The Geotools fork and current relicensing discussion [was Re: The importance of a project's license]

2012-07-27 Thread Alex Mandel
On 07/27/2012 11:09 AM, Adrian Custer wrote:
 Third, the decision strikes me as between honoring the intent of
 contributors to Geotools 2.6 and honoring the desire of the Geotoolkit
 contributors to take forwards their code base and build a community
 after having been rejected by OSGeo. Personally, it feels wrong to have
 all of Geotools 2.6 relicensed from a *GPL style license to an APL or
 similarly permissive license. My personal motivations are very different
 in those two different environments. However, it also feels wrong to
 impose my strong personal preference in a way that blocks the progress
 of others since I want free software exactly so that others have the
 freedom to leverage my work. This is especially true given that the core
 code base of the two projects was overwhelmingly Martin's work, and that
 the new code base has diverged enormously from the time of the fork.

What licenses does the Apache Foundation accept for projects that join
it? Basically I'm wondering, is it a requirement to relicense in order
to join Apache? If so, which licenses are the options?

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Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] The Geotools fork and current relicensing discussion [was Re: The importance of a project's license]

2012-07-27 Thread Justin Deoliveira
On Fri, Jul 27, 2012 at 11:09 AM, Adrian Custer wrote:

 Hello everyone,

 On 7/27/12 12:55 AM, Alex Mandel wrote:

 This is a really interesting debate. Reading the links provided it also
 appears to be a mixed bag about acceptance of LGPL of various firms and
 I'm also sure many of us can name firms that have no issue shipping LGPL

 Aside from that though, reading about the Apache SIS project motivation
 and better understanding of why Geotools forked to begin with seem quite
 relevant. The first was easy to find, but does anyone have a good
 history of geotools v geotoolkit?

 The fork had *nothing* to do with licensing but was primarily motivated by
 governance issues and differences of opinion in project direction.

 Also note that the fork followed over a year of work attempting to
 reconcile differences of vision and governance, so that the fork, when it
 happened, was essentially 'friendly' in that it was based on a common
 agreement that two groups wanted to work in two different directions and
 that the struggle of working together was no longer worth the cost.

 At the core, the fork was motivated by different views for how to handle
 geospatial imagery: one group, including the original author and
 maintainer, had one architectural vision for the code and wanted to work in
 Java exclusively, the other group had a different architectural vision and
 ended up binding to C language libraries for the different image formats.

 However, there were a myriad of other issues. The groups differed in the
 consideration of the importance of working against a formally defined
 abstract API (the GeoAPI project) and of the importance of having this API
 aligned to published international standards from the International
 Organization for Standardization , ISO, and the Open Geospatial Consortium,
 OGC. The group differed in visions of the independence of the Geotools
 library from that of Geoserver including in the direction of development,
 in the schedule for releases, in support for new JAVA APIs, in the adoption
 of new versions of the JAVA runtime environment. Finally, there were
 philosophical differences in the approach towards accuracy that seemed due
 to differences in approach of engineers as compared to that of scientists.

 In other words, the fork was motivated by two groups wanting to work in
 different ways, on different things, towards different goals. The fork,
 then, reflects exactly the reasons we give each other the freedom to work
 with the code we create.

 Thanks Adrian. I find this to be a very accurate and unbiased description
of the actual history and chain of events except for the part about it
being a friendly fork. I don't intend to reignite another flame war so i
won't go into detail but in my opinion (and i am speaking as
an individual on the PMC, and not for the entire PMC) things were left
trying to resolve the technical issues and not in a decision that Martin
should fork the code base. Taking into consideration this and the many
events (both online and offline) that have occurred since the origin of
GeoToolkit i would certainly classify it as a hostile fork.

 As for the relicensing decision itself, here is my take.

 Note, that I am not unbiased in this issue [1], although I suspect my bias
 is more against OSGeo than for anyone in particular.

 First, the choice is only OSGeo's to make. The work that the Geotools
 community put into the copyright assignment focused explicitly on making
 OSGeo the custodian of these issues. In our minds at the time, the
 copyright assignment was designed for three reasons; first, to have legal
 documentation of the intent of a user to contribute, second, to have an
 advocate in the case that any lawsuits arose, and, third, to allow the code
 base to move past any legal problems that might arise with the general
 public license, such as unintended conflicts between the (l)GPL and other
 licenses. So while consulting with current Geotools members is elegant, it
 does not absolve the Board from the ethical responsibility for making its
 own decision.

 Second, the Board is not impartial in this matter. A first point of
 disparity, is that historically, OSGeo is tied closely to the Geoserver
 community, having many of those contributors as Charter Members and having
 board members with direct ties to that project. Conversely, OSGeo has never
 managed to pull in Martin Desruisseaux as a charter member [2]. A second
 point of disparity is that OSGeo denied Geotoolkit acceptance as an OSGeo
 project [*] which, in effect, blessed one side of the fork and not the
 other. Since there are financial and strategic issues involved in allowing
 Geotoolkit to join Apache and form another community, the history of
 OSGeo's relation to geotoolkit should make the board extra cautious to base
 their decision on a well founded reasoning rather than on the personal
 preferences of individuals.

 Third, the decision strikes