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Re: "Approved" applications?

Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2007 1:32 pm
by feloneouscat
Okay, I think people are misunderstanding the point of OSS. I'll take the GPL license, as it is the one most often used in OSS.

NOTHING, I repeat nothing in the GPL says that you can not make money from the sale of GPL software. What it SAYS is that the source is available to the user if the user requests it.

So if I want to sell a system to someone that I wrote, as long as allow access to the software, etc. etc. then I am in no way violating the spirit of the GPL. The GPL is NOT about free software, it is about FREE ACCESS to the source.

That said, I find the SD license to be a bit problematic as the "approved applications" clause seems to indicate "applications that are not sold" (or at least that is the gist that I get from it). Is it to foster OSS software?

If I own a TIVO and write an application, subscribe to this service, is it not reasonable to allow me to use it with my TIVO? This license says no because the TIVO is not approved NOR CAN IT BE as it violates this: "This Agreement does not include or extend to any commercial entity's retail PVR, DVR, IPG, EPG, Widget, or software application that has been specifically created to use such data."

But, even the APPROVED list is problematic. Myth stores the schedule in a MySQL database which, for all intents and purposes, violates "(vi) make or archive copies of Licensed Data". Sorry, unless this is changed, you are archiving the licensed data Myth users.

Then we have this clause (which is probably the most egregious) "Company or Supplier shall deliver Licensed Data to You via one of the open source or "freeware" client-side software products included on the Approved Software List. Any attempt to access Licensed Data via software not included on the Approved Software List will constitute a breach of this Agreement." But there isn't a definition of what constitutes "freeware". Theoretically, if the software shows ads, but it free to the user, then that is still freeware (by the general consensus). By stuffing in the OR you have created a literal pandora's box.

I won't EVEN get into the "Personal Research" list - that is such a freaking pandora's box, I could literally make anything apply. Seriously, I can easily envision a GPL'ed program guide which sends to the non-approved, closed-source DVR,PVR,IPG,EPG,Widget information that doesn't include any of the data downloaded - true, it would be a bit nasty, but it would work and wouldn't violate anything. Intent? Again, what IS the intent?

So, in essence, according to this license, if I use Myth that I bought from a commercial entity, I am violating the agreement (per Section I). BUT, it's okay, because Section II says "approved list". BUT I'm violating it because I'm storing some of the downloaded info in a database. BUT it's okay, because it is open source.

So what does this say all in all? I don't know. It says a list (which is not part of the agreement, BTW) is part of the agreement. It says I can't use a commerical PVR/DVR/IPG/EPG/Widget, but MythTv sold by a commercial entity is okay. It says I can't store the data, but at the same time approved software stores the data.

Unless this document is clarified (what is the intent? To provide schedule listings or to regulate DVR programs), I can't get overly enthused in this. I almost bought into the service, but frankly, I think I will look around for something less egregious - even if the cost is more.

Or, to rephrase it, why should scheduling data dictate the hardware and software that will use it? As far as I can tell, anyone that uses Myth is violating this contract.

Re: "Approved" applications?

Posted: Wed Oct 10, 2007 6:28 am
by cfcubed
Holmgren wrote:I had tried My Telly and Freeguide (and others) several years ago and found them lacking
Did you post feature requests, etc. to their projects? Not that that assures any action, but at least makes the developers aware.

Edit: Ooo. Your comment was in reference to use of Digiguide (commercial software, like $10-$15 USD/yr subscription to provide the free guide data they collect).
Digiguide looks like a great commercial app & it appears they are working on a reliable (free) US data feed, perhaps through scraping.
It's in an entirely different class than open-source freeware that's worked on by a couple of guys in their spare time. And they address different needs; e.g. I have some complex searches set up in My Telly that I run in batch ("Run All searches") once a week, add some shows to my queue & printout a DVR schedule for the week. Sometimes use it live to see whats on that evening (usually not much:)
Holmgren wrote: the My Telly homepage hasn't been updated since 2005.
We did release a very minor patch to the SD-compatible ver 1.11 Beta a couple/few weeks ago. Parses /New flag & shows firstruns in bold.