The Easy Guide To Software Licences
Written by Alex Armstrong   
Thursday, 13 March 2014

Keeping track of the licences to software you use in your own creations is vital if you want stay on the right side of the law - but they are generally more difficult to read than spaghetti code. Now a website that provides easy to understand information about software licences and terms of service has launched in alpha. 

 

The site has been created by Kevin Wang who is listed as the manager of the majority of the initial licences that it contained but anyone who registers as a user can also contribute and can also propose changes to fork the licences that are already listed.

At the time of writing there are over 50 licences and terms of service listed and from popular ones like Apache 2.0, MIT and variants on GNU, through Creative Commons Attribution and Dropbox Terms of Service to ones that are less well know such as the Don't be  Dick Public License.

There are three tabs for each entry. A summary provides a short description ad shows at a glance what the licences permits (in its green Can panel), what it prohibits (in the red Cannot panel) and what those using the licence have to do (in the blue Must panel)

 

tldrlicence

 

The second tab has the full licence text and the third is for proposed changes and their status.

 

The site is currently in Alpha and some of its feature, such as a developer API, are still in the pipeline. You sign up to to notified when this is ready and also to contribute to the growth of this useful resource.tldrsquare

More Information

tldrlegal.com

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