is there really no good gui builder

David Boddie david at boddie.org.uk
Sun Nov 9 15:55:54 CET 2008


On Sunday 09 November 2008 13:45, Ben Finney wrote:

> Duncan Booth <duncan.booth at invalid.invalid> writes:
> 
>> Mr.SpOOn wrote:
>> > What's the problem with qt licence?
>> 
>> "You must purchase a Qt Commercial License from Qt Software or from
>> one of its authorized resellers before you start developing
>> commercial software. The Commercial license does not allow the
>> incorporation of code developed with the Open Source Edition of Qt
>> into a commercial product."
> 
> This text is at <URL:http://trolltech.com/products/appdev/licensing>,
> for those following along at home.
> 
> The above statement is confusing and misleading. There is nothing
> about the GPL that prevents commercial software; in fact, selling
> software to support development is positively encouraged.

I agree that it's misleading, but it doesn't say anything about the GPL
preventing commercial software. It's easy to read something into it that
isn't there, though you could argue that it's implied somehow. Ideally,
it would say, "You must purchase a Qt Commercial License from Qt Software
or from one of its authorized resellers before you start developing closed
source software for distribution."

[...]

> What that page says could be correct if, instead of falsely claiming
> that *commercial* software requires a separate license, it rather said
> that if you want to redistribute Qt with *restrictions* on the
> recipient additional to those in the GPL, you cannot use the GPL as
> the license. They offer a separate license (the confusingly-named
> ?commercial license?) that permits some additional restrictions on
> the recipient of your software.

Probably. That page has been a source of controversy for some time.

[...]

>> It is a novel interpretation of the GPL. Qt Software have every
>> right to impose this sort of condition, but it makes me want to
>> avoid them.
> 
> No, they have no such right to interpret the GPL this way; it would be
> entirely incompatible with the GPL since it would be an imposition of
> additional restrictions, resulting in work that could not legally be
> redistributed at all.

If we're talking about the second sentence, it's not an interpretation of
the GPL. It is a restriction of the commercial license.

> In fact, I don't think they are making such an interpretation, though
> their poorly-worded web page that you quoted certainly encourages
> readers to make such a false interpretation.

Agreed. The compromise in the terms used (commercial vs. proprietary or
closed source) is designed to encourage adoption of commercial licenses
rather than explain the situation, perhaps because there's the fear that
some developers won't pay attention to anything less than a strongly-worded
warning.

David



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