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June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
Nick Sabalausky, el 22 de junio a las 22:35 me escribiste:
> "BCS" <none@anon.com> wrote in message 
> news:a6268ff1581a8cce05541b41e04@news.digitalmars.com...
> > Hello bearophile,
> >
> >> Robert Jacques:
> >>
> >>> The patent seems to be Borlands's:
> >>> USPTO patent #5,628,016 Patent held by Borland on compiler support
> >>> for SEH.
> >>> From a Wine wiki page:
> >>> http://wiki.winehq.org/CompilerExceptionSupport
> >>> It does seem to expire on June 15, 2014, though and I assume
> >>> DigitalMars  has a license, so a LLVM fork is not unreasonable.
> >>>
> >> On Windows G++ supports exceptions. I have two questions:
> >>
> >> 1) Do you know how they do this? Do they have a license? If they have
> >> a licence why don't LLVM people too have it?
> >>
> >
> > The patent holder has refused licenses to all OSS projects. What GCC does 
> > is use a different system (something to do with tables). The patent is 
> > strictly for SEH.
> >
> 
> So can't LLVM just take the same approach?
> 
> Also, accoroding to 
> http://www.microsoft.com/msj/0197/Exception/Exception.aspx (One of the links 
> on the page from Robert above), SEH is a service provided by Windows. So 
> wouldn't MS be the only one that would need a license? (I'm probably just 
> misunderstanding something here.)
> 
> Plus, do we even know that this is what's holding up LLVM exceptions on 
> Windows?

I guess the best way to get answers is to ask in the LLVM mailing list,
I think here you'll only find more answers =)

-- 
Leandro Lucarella (AKA luca)                     http://llucax.com.ar/
----------------------------------------------------------------------
GPG Key: 5F5A8D05 (F8CD F9A7 BF00 5431 4145  104C 949E BFB6 5F5A 8D05)
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Lo último que hay que pensar es que se desalinea la memoria
Hay que priorizar como causa la idiotez propia
Ya lo tengo asumido
	-- Pablete, filósofo contemporáneo desconocido
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
On 6/22/2010 7:07 PM, BCS wrote:
> Hello Brad,
> 
> 
>> I agree that excess paranoia isn't warranted, but neither is willful
>> ignorance.
> 
> Willful ignorance is the recommendation in some shops as it avoids
> triple damages.

What I meant was s/ignorance/infringement/.. major disconnect between brain and
keyboard there.

Actually, most business (at least those smart enough to pay attention to patents
and the dangers involved) encourage encapsulated ignorance.  Engineers stay in
the dark but the legal teams stay informed and guide the engineers away from
likely landmines if needed.

And that's likely about all I should talk about this subject.  In fact, most of
this thread is worth dropping as not really helping anyone or anything.  If
you're concerned, consult a lawyer.

Later,
Brad
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
Leandro Lucarella, el 23 de junio a las 00:31 me escribiste:
> Nick Sabalausky, el 22 de junio a las 22:35 me escribiste:
> > "BCS" <none@anon.com> wrote in message 
> > news:a6268ff1581a8cce05541b41e04@news.digitalmars.com...
> > > Hello bearophile,
> > >
> > >> Robert Jacques:
> > >>
> > >>> The patent seems to be Borlands's:
> > >>> USPTO patent #5,628,016 Patent held by Borland on compiler support
> > >>> for SEH.
> > >>> From a Wine wiki page:
> > >>> http://wiki.winehq.org/CompilerExceptionSupport
> > >>> It does seem to expire on June 15, 2014, though and I assume
> > >>> DigitalMars  has a license, so a LLVM fork is not unreasonable.
> > >>>
> > >> On Windows G++ supports exceptions. I have two questions:
> > >>
> > >> 1) Do you know how they do this? Do they have a license? If they have
> > >> a licence why don't LLVM people too have it?
> > >>
> > >
> > > The patent holder has refused licenses to all OSS projects. What GCC does 
> > > is use a different system (something to do with tables). The patent is 
> > > strictly for SEH.
> > >
> > 
> > So can't LLVM just take the same approach?
> > 
> > Also, accoroding to 
> > http://www.microsoft.com/msj/0197/Exception/Exception.aspx (One of the links 
> > on the page from Robert above), SEH is a service provided by Windows. So 
> > wouldn't MS be the only one that would need a license? (I'm probably just 
> > misunderstanding something here.)
> > 
> > Plus, do we even know that this is what's holding up LLVM exceptions on 
> > Windows?
> 
> I guess the best way to get answers is to ask in the LLVM mailing list,
> I think here you'll only find more answers =)

Stupid! Stupid! s/more answers/more questions/

-- 
Leandro Lucarella (AKA luca)                     http://llucax.com.ar/
----------------------------------------------------------------------
GPG Key: 5F5A8D05 (F8CD F9A7 BF00 5431 4145  104C 949E BFB6 5F5A 8D05)
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Can you stand up?
I do believe it's working, good.
That'll keep you going through the show
Come on it's time to go.
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
Hello Nick,

> "BCS" <none@anon.com> wrote in message
> news:a6268ff157f28cce05385dcf99a@news.digitalmars.com...
> 
>> Hello Nick,
>> 
>>> Seems a weak reason. A programmer that's worried about infringing
>>> software patents can't write anything more useful than "Hello
>>> World". I'm seriously not convinced at all that it's even possible
>>> to write useful code that doesn't technically infringe on some
>>> software patent. As a programmer, either you accept the fact that
>>> what you do is inevitably going to trample software patents, or you
>>> just simply don't be a programmer. That's all there is.
>>> 
>> Or keep an eye on what people have actually been sued over and don't
>> do that.
>> 
>> In this case I'd be surprised if it could stand up in court.
>> 
> Especially since the Plaintiff would apperently be the modern-day
> Borland. Do they even exist anymore? If they do, would they even be
> able to afford a lawyer?

Yes they could, MS bought it (I'm not sure if that's the patent or the company, 
but MS has it now).

>> Unless SEH is insanely convoluted to implement I can't see how the
>> patent passes the non-obviousness criteria.
>> 
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inventive_step_and_non-obviousness
>> 
>> I wonder if you can get a patent thrown out as invalid without
>> someone infringing on it?
>
> I've wondered that, too. Actually, I've wondered that about US laws in
> general. Being a US citizen (and having passed the manditory "American
> Government" class in high school) I probably *should* know... :/
> 

In the US we have two kinds of laws; the kind nobody should need and the 
kind nobody understands. ;)

-- 
... <IXOYE><
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
Hello dsimcha,

> == Quote from BCS (none@anon.com)'s article
> 
>> Hello dsimcha,
>> 
>>> == Quote from Brad Roberts (braddr@slice-2.puremagic.com)'s article
>>> 
>>>> On Tue, 22 Jun 2010, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
>>>> 
>>>>> Seems a weak reason. A programmer that's worried about infringing
>>>>> software patents can't write anything more useful than "Hello
>>>>> World". I'm seriously not convinced at all that it's even possible
>>>>> to write useful code that doesn't technically infringe on some
>>>>> software patent. As a programmer, either you accept the fact that
>>>>> what you do is inevitably going to trample software patents, or
>>>>> you just simply don't be a programmer. That's all there is.
>>>>> 
>>>> The world's not nearly that black and white.  There's a huge
>>>> difference in
>>>> infringment in an app you write for yourself vs an app that's very
>>>> public.
>>>> LLVM is somewhat closer to the latter end of the spectrum.
>>>> I agree that excess paranoia isn't warranted, but neither is
>>>> willful
>>>> ignorance.
>>> If we're really lucky, Bilski Vs. Kappos
>>> (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In_re_Bilski) will send all the
>>> software patent attorneys to the poorhouse next week and we can just
>>> start trampling freely.
>>> 
>> OTOH, based on the wiki, the court seems to support a
>> "Machine-or-transformation test" and what is a compiler if not a
>> transformation tool?
>> 
> Bits are not a "particular article".
> 

We can hope! (I never said I supported software patents :)

-- 
... <IXOYE><
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
Hello Nick,

> "BCS" <none@anon.com> wrote in message
> news:a6268ff1581a8cce05541b41e04@news.digitalmars.com...
> 
>> Hello bearophile,
>> 
>>> Robert Jacques:
>>> 
>>>> The patent seems to be Borlands's:
>>>> USPTO patent #5,628,016 Patent held by Borland on compiler support
>>>> for SEH.
>>>> From a Wine wiki page:
>>>> http://wiki.winehq.org/CompilerExceptionSupport
>>>> It does seem to expire on June 15, 2014, though and I assume
>>>> DigitalMars  has a license, so a LLVM fork is not unreasonable.
>>> On Windows G++ supports exceptions. I have two questions:
>>> 
>>> 1) Do you know how they do this? Do they have a license? If they
>>> have a licence why don't LLVM people too have it?
>>> 
>> The patent holder has refused licenses to all OSS projects. What GCC
>> does is use a different system (something to do with tables). The
>> patent is strictly for SEH.
>> 
> So can't LLVM just take the same approach?
> 
> Also, accoroding to
> http://www.microsoft.com/msj/0197/Exception/Exception.aspx (One of the
> links on the page from Robert above), SEH is a service provided by
> Windows. So wouldn't MS be the only one that would need a license?
> (I'm probably just misunderstanding something here.)

The title of the patent leads me to believe that it covers compilers that 
generate code that uses SEH.

> 
> Plus, do we even know that this is what's holding up LLVM exceptions
> on Windows?

I've heard from someone who would know that the patent is the reason SEH 
isn't in LLVM. I also have it from some (different someone) that LLVM should 
in theory have setjump/longjump exception handling under windows but they 
didn't even venture a guess if it actually worked. If it doesn't and if LDC 
would use it if it were fixed I'd be interested in at least looking into 
fixing it (LDC people???).

-- 
... <IXOYE><
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
"BCS" <none@anon.com> wrote in message 
news:a6268ff1582d8cce06addc4dc7e@news.digitalmars.com...
> Hello Nick,
>
>> "BCS" <none@anon.com> wrote in message
>> news:a6268ff157f28cce05385dcf99a@news.digitalmars.com...
>>
>>> Hello Nick,
>>>
>>>> Seems a weak reason. A programmer that's worried about infringing
>>>> software patents can't write anything more useful than "Hello
>>>> World". I'm seriously not convinced at all that it's even possible
>>>> to write useful code that doesn't technically infringe on some
>>>> software patent. As a programmer, either you accept the fact that
>>>> what you do is inevitably going to trample software patents, or you
>>>> just simply don't be a programmer. That's all there is.
>>>>
>>> Or keep an eye on what people have actually been sued over and don't
>>> do that.
>>>
>>> In this case I'd be surprised if it could stand up in court.
>>>
>> Especially since the Plaintiff would apperently be the modern-day
>> Borland. Do they even exist anymore? If they do, would they even be
>> able to afford a lawyer?
>
> Yes they could, MS bought it (I'm not sure if that's the patent or the 
> company, but MS has it now).
>

Hmm. That means the LLVM devs themselves would be safe, but companies using 
it would get extorted ( 
http://www.computerworlduk.com/toolbox/open-source/blogs/index.cfm?entryid=1953&blogid=14 
and  http://news.cnet.com/8301-13860_3-10206988-56.html ).

>>> Unless SEH is insanely convoluted to implement I can't see how the
>>> patent passes the non-obviousness criteria.
>>>
>>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inventive_step_and_non-obviousness
>>>
>>> I wonder if you can get a patent thrown out as invalid without
>>> someone infringing on it?
>>
>> I've wondered that, too. Actually, I've wondered that about US laws in
>> general. Being a US citizen (and having passed the manditory "American
>> Government" class in high school) I probably *should* know... :/
>>
>
> In the US we have two kinds of laws; the kind nobody should need and the 
> kind nobody understands. ;)
>

Heh :)
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
Leandro Lucarella:
> Yes, I don't think "copying with 'cosmetic changes'" works, legally
> speaking. Otherwise everybody would be doing it.

If 10% of changes is not legally enough, they LLVM dev can copy it and then change the 15% of it or even 20%. There must exist a minimum amount of differences between two blocks of code that allows them to be legally considered different, otherwise GNU is worse than a software patent.


Nick Sabalausky:
>Plus, do we even know that this is what's holding up LLVM exceptions on Windows?<

The main LLVM dev(s) are hired by Apple, that I presume is not so worried of windows too much. What they want is people to think LLVM is a bit multi-platform, so they can contribute to the project for free.
I'll restart helping the LLVM project when it has gained some exceptions for Windows :-)

Bye,
bearophile
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
bearophile wrote:
> Leandro Lucarella:
>> Yes, I don't think "copying with 'cosmetic changes'" works, legally
>> speaking. Otherwise everybody would be doing it.
> 
> If 10% of changes is not legally enough, they LLVM dev can copy it and then change the 15% of it or even 20%. There must exist a minimum amount of differences between two blocks of code that allows them to be legally considered different, otherwise GNU is worse than a software patent.
> 
> 
> Nick Sabalausky:
>> Plus, do we even know that this is what's holding up LLVM exceptions on Windows?<
> 
> The main LLVM dev(s) are hired by Apple, that I presume is not so worried of windows too much. What they want is people to think LLVM is a bit multi-platform, so they can contribute to the project for free.
> I'll restart helping the LLVM project when it has gained some exceptions for Windows :-)
> 
> Bye,
> bearophile

Hear, hear.  Sometimes the pendulum swings too far one way and then time 
becomes due for it to swing back the other way.

Windows exception system (SEH - structured exception handling) does have 
some nice things about it which are tedious if not difficult on other 
platforms.  It would be gracious of LLVM to acknowledge this.

Cheers
Justin Johansson
June 23, 2010
Re: DMD Backend Long-term
Hello bearophile,

> Leandro Lucarella:
> 
>> Yes, I don't think "copying with 'cosmetic changes'" works, legally
>> speaking. Otherwise everybody would be doing it.
>> 
> If 10% of changes is not legally enough, they LLVM dev can copy it and
> then change the 15% of it or even 20%. There must exist a minimum
> amount of differences between two blocks of code that allows them to
> be legally considered different, otherwise GNU is worse than a
> software patent.
> 

The fact that you started with GNU code it the important thing: the original 
file is under GNU, so the file after the very first edit (one key stroke) 
is also under GNU and because it is, so is the file after the second edit, 
etc. etc.

If you started with a blank file and ended up with something that (after 
ignoring formatting) was 50% similar to some GNU code, you might be able 
to get away with it as long as you've never looked at the other code, but 
I wouldn't bet on it.

-- 
... <IXOYE><
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