IW2FHM wrote: ↑
Tue Apr 20, 2021 3:09 pm
Question to KC7RBW: Given the result of your "LEGALITY" request, about OpenGD77, how do you feel today ??? ......
Thank you for your fabulous contribution to the HAM community spirit.
I feel relieved, puzzled, and hopeful. I'm relieved that Roger has decided to do his best to comply with the terms of the license (thank you!) and puzzled that anyone thinks this means the project has to shut down. I'm hopeful that things will turn out better than some of you fear.
I also feel sad for the choices my own actions appear to have catalyzed, but I do not feel responsible for those choices. I've read everything Roger and Daniel have written about those choices on this forum and I don't understand why they think it all has to end.
I do think Roger may be right to take down firmware builds that include the proprietary codec, but I don't represent DVSI and I sincerely doubt they care. I personally would rather see the firmware builds stay up, but I also know enough about copyright law that I'm not going to share them with anyone myself. I'm partial to the argument that the codec is like a proprietary library (though strictly speaking it's not quite that) that unfortunately has to be linked in to get it all working.
The source code doesn't include the codec - the project was always careful to avoid that, so it can stay public and people can keep improving it. If Roger doesn't want to manage the GitHub repo anymore someone else may need to accept those contributions. The project kept going after Kai stopped working on it - it will keep going if Roger and Daniel stop too. And they don't have to stop!
Temporarily, until someone writes a tool to let end users patch in the proprietary codec themselves, you might not find someone who's willing to give you a firmware build that includes the codec. Once someone writes that tool there will be no reason not to post non-functional fully open source builds that require those tools be used before the firmware can be uploaded to your radio. Or you might find that there are lots of people who are happy to provide full source code and firmware builds that include the codec, even though the legality of that may be questionable.
It won't be me - as much as I'd like to throw builds of the current firmware up on some site for you right now I also don't want that legal question mark hanging over my head. What I will do, if someone else doesn't get it done before I do, is see if I can write some kind of tool for that myself and at least post some kind of example code that shows how you'd do it.
The CPS is another problem entirely, but I won't go into that here and I disclaim any assertion that my own tiny contribution to the CPS is even copyrightable - I literally only contributed some integers (you can't copyright integers). Several people are working on things that could be used to manage and upload your codeplugs without the CPS, so I think that's going to work out.
I sympathize with all of you at how frustrating this disruption is, and I can only assure you that nothing I've done has forced this. The only action I ever asked for was for the source code to be posted, Roger says that's done now, and I trust that's true. I can see how my explanations of copyright law and open source licensing have precipitated the rest of what's happening, but I don't blame myself for that. I want the project to move toward a more solid legal footing so that it can continue, and I can't feel that it's wrong for me to want that.
I will also add that I'm very
concerned for the visually impaired radio operator community. Roger and the others have done an exceptionally good thing in providing and improving support for voice prompts, and it's far more tragic for them than for the rest of us for that to stop - or even for it to be stalled while we sort this out.