open-source software for bioinformatics

Korbinian Strimmer strimmer at ermine.ox.ac.uk
Wed Aug 9 14:42:27 EST 2000

On Wed, 9 Aug 2000, Nicolas Le Novere wrote:

> Then I advise you to reread the GPL attentively, because it indeed does
> permit somebody else to sell your source code. In fact, it forces the
> selling of your code together with the binaries. You make the standard 
> mistake, which is so harmful for the open-source movement, stating that
> the free software cannot be commercial.

If I read the GPL correctly it says

  "You may charge a fee for the physical act of transferring a copy, and
   you may at your option offer warranty protection in exchange for a


  "You must cause any work that you distribute or publish, that in whole
   or in part contains or is derived from the Program or any part thereof,
   to be licensed as a whole at no charge to all third parties under the
   terms of this License"

This does not prevent commercialisation of a program but it ensures that
everbody can obtain a copy of it (and all derived works) for a nominal

Apart from that I like the GPL because it simplifies working together on
the same code with people from different institutions.


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