Intellectual property, copyright & copyleft

Introduction to open source and open source principles

This post introduces what is open source and what are the factors must be included when using open source products or websites.

According to what says on the Open-source’s website, the definition of open source is: “something people can modify and share”.

Nowadays, people have a deeper understanding of this term and developed certain rules for those who want to create open-source websites or software.

Those are called the Open Source Initiative and here are the following criteria:

  1. Free redistribution.
    This means that the open-source product is licensed from any party by allowing them to sell or give away. While using the resources, the code coming from the open-source project should not be charged in any form.
  2. Source Code
    As mentioned above, the code getting from the project is called: “Source Code”. A program must include source code and must permit anyone to distribute the code as well as compiled form.
  3. Derived Work
    The license must be modifiable and it must allow anyone to create derived works. Based on this idea, it must also allow the works to be distributed under the same terms from the license of the original work.
  4. The integrity of The Author’s Source Code
    When anyone is trying to alter and modify the work, one must keep the source code from the original work.
    It is an essential point that the ability to trace code when some author has modified the work.
  5. No discrimination against persons or group
    This rule is about that different groups of people should not be prohibited from accessing the open-source website, and those people should not be classified under any “race” or “nationality”.
  6. No discrimination against specific fields of endeavor.
    Similar to the 5th one, there should not be a license restricting anyone from using the program in any certain field of career.
  7. Distribution of License
    The distributed license includes everything required to secure right, and no action needs to be taken when using, altering or distribute the code.
  8. License Must Not Be Specific to a Product
    If the program is removed from the distribution and used or issued within the terms of the program’s license, all parties to whom the program is reallocated should have the same rights as those that are granted along with the original work distribution.
  9. License Must Not Restrict Other Software
    The license must not place restrictions on other software that is distributed along with the licensed software. In other words, this is saying that it’s free to use your open source code with proprietary code. The license doesn’t require all other programs distributed on the same medium must be open-source software.
  10. License Must Be Technology Neutral
    The license has to be open to a variety of technologies and interfaces.

These ten factors made up what open-source initiatives, each of which is indispensable for building open-source websites or software.

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