[ros-dev] Bye bye

Casper Hornstrup ch at eudicon.com
Wed Jan 18 23:21:29 CET 2006

Forgot my reference:


What is protectable?

- not protected
- must be an "expression...of a set of instructions"
- Autodesk Inc v Dyason (Aust): copying function of AutoCAD lock but not
code (no infringement)

Program Structure?
- (cf: plot elements in literary/dramatic works capable of protection)
- eg. structural arrangements of modules and subroutines
- yes if expression of idea, & no if ideas or functions: difficult line to
- yes if organisation, sequence, arrangement or compilation
- not protectable: elements of software which are:
  * ideas;
  * dictated by efficiency or external factors (eg h/w) specs, compatibility
reqms, industry standards; or
  * public domain
- not if similarity is due only to similar subject matter
  * analogy: drawing of a hand
  * eg any 2 word processors will have some structural similarities

We use the compatibility requirement reason. If we don't have that reason,
then we have no right to create an identical implementation.


-----Original Message-----
From: ros-dev-bounces at reactos.org [mailto:ros-dev-bounces at reactos.org] On
Behalf Of Casper Hornstrup
Sent: 18. januar 2006 23:06
To: 'ReactOS Development List'
Subject: RE: [ros-dev] Bye bye

You MAY use the INFORMATION to implement the same functionality in ReactOS.
You MAY NOT copy (and I'm talking about copy/pasting here) the
work/implementation. This can be hard to do since one may think, why would I
want to spend hours thinking up a new implementation when I've got a
perfectly good one right in front of me? So to avoid this pitfall it is best
to describe the functionality in plain English and let another developer
implement the functionality using only the English text. A lot of work, but
this is exactly why we have copyright. Microsoft did spend even more effort
on the original implementation.


-----Original Message-----
From: ros-dev-bounces at reactos.org [mailto:ros-dev-bounces at reactos.org] On
Behalf Of Hartmut Birr
Sent: 18. januar 2006 22:45
To: ReactOS Development List
Subject: Re: [ros-dev] Bye bye

Royce Mitchell III wrote:
> Hartmut Birr wrote:
>> Hi,
>> I don't agree completely with our legal policy. In my opinion, it is
>> allowed to use reverse-engineering to find out interfaces or something
>> like this. It isn't allowed to disassemble windows to study how the fast
>> call entry works or to find out how the APC code is implemented. There
>> exist some paper on the web. It is allowed to use the nice paper from
>> David P. Probert (Windows Kernel Development). It isn't allowed to use
>> the code from the dude called CrazyLord (Reverse Engineer).
> This isn't quite fair, unfortunately. We've gone a long time without
> an explicit policy regarding this subject, mostly because we were all
> in agreement. You can't boot someone out because they violated a rule
> that wasn't made clear to them. OTOH, if our position is clearly
> stated and is violated then I agree - begone with them.
Looking on http://www.reactos.org/xhtml/en/dev_legalreview.htm
<http://www.reactos.org/xhtml/en/dev_legalreview.html>, I found:
C. Copyrights of Others
The ReactOS Project depends on copyright law for the protection of its
code, and by the same token, it respects the copyrights of others.
Following are the policies of the ReactOS Project as they relate to
Disassembly of object code is held to be a form of reverse engineering.
Disassembled code listings should be treated with the same terms of
license as the object code itself.

If I understand this correctly with my poor English, it isn't possible
to disassembly a part of windows and uses this information to implement
the same code in ReactOS.

- Hartmut

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