Today I uploaded the source codes for all versions of all my released LScript plugins for LightWave 3D to Google Code. I’ve been wanting to do that for some time so others can study and learn from my scripts, as well as increasing the reliability to use them in production as they can be tweaked or fixed for custom purposes.
What’s been keeping me from doing it earlier is to find and understand under what Open Source license to release them under. Many people just grab a license, often GPL, without really understanding what affect that actually will have on their software. I wanted to make an educated choice and do my research so I didn’t fall into any traps.
GPL was the first license I looked at, but it’s not very suitable at all to release open source plugins and scripts under. I found out that releasing a plugin under GPL for LightWave 3D actually violates the GPL. You cannot release a plugin for a non-free program like LightWave and the way LightWave handles plugins under GPL. Well, you can, but then you have to modify the GPL. That was just not a road I wanted to travel, and combined with all the restrictions GPL applies on the software, made me abandon the idea of using GPL.
Instead after reading and comparing a bunch of other open source licenses I ended up using the new BSD license which was exactly what I wanted out of the box. It is a very permissive license that allows you to use the source code in many more ways than GPL allows you to. You can do pretty much anything you want with my sources, including using them in closed software projects without having to share your code, as long as my copyright is left intact.
And the reason I’m using Google Code is that, well, it will probably be around for a very long time, to eliminate the risk that they would one day disappear from the net.
Excellent! So if you’re interested in LScripting, feel free to download and dissect my sources, make your own versions and so on…