[jdom-interest] * Using JDOM In Applet Help Needed

Jason Hunter jhunter at collab.net
Mon May 21 01:55:34 PDT 2001

I'm confused about the Electric XML license.  Here's snippets from the
conversation over the past week.

Jason wrote:
> Someone should write a JDOM builder that uses that parser.  Is it 100%
> XML compatible?  I seem to remember it doesn't do validation and certain
> other things.
> -jh-

graham glass wrote:
> hi jason,
> as we've discussed before, this would violate the
> electric XML license.

Jason wrote:
> I suppose you are reading this to mean that someone couldn't write a
> builder that took an Electric XML document and converted it to a JDOM
> document?

graham glass wrote:
> electric xml is meant to be an attractive *alternative* to jdom,
> not a convenient way to improve it!

Jason wrote:
> This should stand as a warning to anyone considering using Electric
> XML.

James Strachan wrote:
> This anti-Xerces & anti-JDOM clause does seem a bit silly. (I guess it
> applies to dom4j too). This is a shame as much of Graham's work in the past
> at ObjectSpace with STL, JGL and Voyager was very impressive.
> The licence talks about when you can't "bundle" and "integrate" EXML. I'm
> confused, could we distribute the source code or binary for an adapter that
> converted, say an EXML tree into a JDOM or dom4j tree, or vice versa,
> providing that we don't also bundle the EXML distribution? You could argue
> that DOM, dom4j, EXML, JDOM together with Adelaird, Castor, JOX, Quick, JATO
> and the rest are all "alternatives".

graham glass wrote:
> feel free to create adapters that convert electric xml
> documents to/from dom4j trees, and ship with electric
> source/binaries if you like.

James Strachan wrote:
> I take it the same applies to creating adapters that convert to/from JDOM
> trees too?

graham glass wrote:
> yes, no problem!

Jason now writes:

It seems dom4j can write an adapter that converts from electric xml
to/from dom4j trees.  And it seems JDOM could write a similar adapter. 
But if we call the JDOM adapter a "builder" and use it to build JDOM
documents using the electric xml parser, then we violate the electric
XML license because that would qualify as "integrating Electric XML into
an alternative to Electric XML".

Maybe giving benefit of the doubt, Graham didn't understand the
technical details when he initially posted what we could and couldn't
do.  But regardless, it proves this point to me:  I don't want to use
software where my use rights can be whimsically dictated by someone
else.  And I'm really not sure why anyone else would either.

For those who are new to open source, you should check out the Open
Source Definition (http://www.opensource.org/docs/definition_plain.html)
and see what a license must satisfy to be qualified as open source.  Not
all open source licenses are great, and not all non-open source licenses
are poor, but having an open source license always gives the user some
important assurances.  Clauses 5 and 6 of the definition prohibit
restricting use rights:

5. No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups
The license must not discriminate against any person or group of

6. No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor
The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the program in a
specific field of endeavor. For example, it may not restrict the program
from being used in a business, or from being used for genetic research.


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