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The Software IP Detective’s Handbook: Measurement, Comparison, and Infringement Detection by Bob Zeidman

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26. Open Source Software

In this chapter I discuss open source software, increasingly important in all aspects of software development. Open source software is software for which the source code is easily available for free use in other programs but that usually requires the user to abide by a specific license.

Open source licenses range from very simple, allowing unrestricted use of the code, to very complex, with very specific limitations on the use of the code. Software developers should understand open source code and the licensing issues that go along with it before using the code in their projects. Those involved with intellectual property theft need to understand when open source can be used and when it cannot be used, as well as how to ...

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