LGPL for Interpreted Languages?

Hans Fugal hans at fugal.net
Sat Jan 27 19:29:31 MST 2007


I wrote a library in ruby (http://hans.fugal.net/src/ruby-wx). In the
spirit of release early release often, I released it as soon as it had
basic functionality. As I usually do, I slapped on a GPL license by
default and decided to think about licensing later.

One individual who is a convert from parseltongue is considering
contributing to the library (he worked on a similar library in python),
but he's not keen on releasing his work under the GPL. So later has
became sooner, which can only be good.

What I'd like is to release it under something conceptually equivalent
to the LGPL. That is, you should be able to use the library for any
purpose you like including proprietary software. IOW it isn't viral. But
I do want any changes to the library (which are distributed) to be
opened up. The problem is that the language in the LGPL doesn't really
make much sense for interpreted languages.

Java has faced this/is facing this:
http://slashdot.org/developers/03/07/17/2257224.shtml

The LISP[1] folks have a preamble approach:
http://opensource.franz.com/preamble.html
The LISP terminology is closer to Ruby than C, but there's still some
oddball things that don't map cleanly.

What do you all think? Is there a license out there like the LGPL but
geared toward interpreted languages? Feel free to blather on about how
you shouldn't consider anything but the GPL, or how even the LGPL is too
restrictive and we should all use a BSD-like license, or how only the
public domain is truly righteous. I do reserve the right to ignore you.

Thanks

1. Just teasing you, Levi

-- 
Hans Fugal ; http://hans.fugal.net
 
There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the 
right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
    -- Johann Sebastian Bach
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