OpenSource and your employer ...

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Tom82
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OpenSource and your employer ...

Post by Tom82 » Wed Aug 03, 2005 7:55 am

hi there,

if i make a control which could be usefully by others, and i made this control on the job, could i get problems with my employer if i release it under GPL ???

NinjaNL
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Post by NinjaNL » Wed Aug 03, 2005 10:37 am

Short answer, that depends on your employer.

Long answer, that really depends on your employer and his attitude to work done 'on the clock'

I had an employer once who also had it written in my contract that anything I did outside of work, but which was related to my function, was also his property.

So I would suggest you discuss with your employer before you release anything which he might consider his, and land yourself in a lot of trouble.
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wxDiilbert
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Post by wxDiilbert » Wed Aug 03, 2005 10:56 am

You do need to get permission since they paid you to create the control and it is their property.

Tom82
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Post by Tom82 » Wed Aug 03, 2005 12:01 pm

yeah i think that too :(
i am also fearing that he could want property rights for controls i make in my leisure.
how could i save these rights ?
Developing for and with WinXp
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NinjaNL
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Post by NinjaNL » Wed Aug 03, 2005 12:16 pm

Tom82 wrote:yeah i think that too :(
i am also fearing that he could want property rights for controls i make in my leisure.
how could i save these rights ?
Firstly, don't use the controls you create in your leisure time at work.

Secondly, don't tell him about them.

As I said previously, one of my previous employers wanted anything I did that was related to my job function for himself. This sounds like you may have such an employer.
Follow the development of my screenplay authoring program at http://wxscreenplaywriter.blogspot.com/

benedicte
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Post by benedicte » Wed Aug 03, 2005 12:33 pm

In many european contries, the intellectual property tells the following :arrow:

- all the stuff you do for your job belongs to the company (not the boss as a person).
- if you want/need to use a GPL component, your employer must allow you to do this, so that he cannot tell afterwards the stuff was the company's property.
- if you do something in your leisure, and if your company must/want to use it, you need to have a contract (even if they don't pay you...), so that things are official. this may prevent the company from asking you any bug fix or feature improvement if you don't work for it any more.

:idea: btw, if the company does not pay you, this is not a good idea... you make them save money (the time you spent to make your stuff), so they should pay you something (at least as a software service provider).

for high added-value components, this is something you must thing about before using your code for your company.

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Post by upCASE » Wed Aug 03, 2005 12:43 pm

Hi!
Well, I think this is all about money...

I created a patch for WinCE (which is in wxWidgets now), that enabled (basic) socket support for this platform. I did it on the job as it was a feature we needed back then. There were only two choices:
1. Implement something of out own
2. Hack up wxWidgets to support it.

As we allready had written parts in wxWidgets, it would have been quite useless and timewasting to reinvent the wheel by not using wxWidgets classes and adding the needed support.

Now, as I said, this patch is in wxWidgets now. Ok, it's not an new control, but anyway: How could we have made money out of that?
It's nothing we could have sold. Meanwhile I convinced my boss that wxWidgets is really a great thing to use. Best of all it's free. But how would development go any further if nobody does patch and realse new features? We got a briliant toolkit and use it, so the best we could do was to realse the code and a patch. That way we can use wxWidgets, contributed to it and have a version now that does what we want "out of the box".

Still, I guess it depends on the employer. The best argument I can imagine is: We got domething usefull, why not give something usefull back in return?

I spend two or three days on this. Was it wasted time? No!
Do we use it? Yes.
Can others use it? Yes.
Could we have made others to pay for it? No.
Sooner or later there would have been a feature like this and it would be free...

Just my 2 cents...
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Tom82
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Post by Tom82 » Wed Aug 03, 2005 1:18 pm

hmm i see the thing so:

if i make something witch could be used by other wx Developers too i would give it out.
people would maybe fix bugs or improve it, so it would decrease costs for the company (because noone of my company has to do that)
thats my point of view, but i am pretty sure that bosses got this point of view "you are developing for free in the time i pay you ??? no way!!"

or am i wrong ???
of course, it absolutely depends on the company...
Developing for and with WinXp
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upCASE
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Post by upCASE » Wed Aug 03, 2005 1:28 pm

Tom82 wrote: people would maybe fix bugs or improve it, so it would decrease costs for the company (because noone of my company has to do that)
thats my point of view, but i am pretty sure that bosses got this point of view "you are developing for free in the time i pay you ??? no way!!"
So basicaly your boss would say: "I'll spend more money on you to develop it further and get rid of the bugs. You won't be available for other projects while doing this. I don't think that a lot of eyes see more than just a pair."
Hmm... Must be quite some component you're working on. Care to tell us? Or did you have to sign a non-disclosure for that :D

Honestly, that's quite an irritating attitude. It's not like you want to make the whole app open source and who cares if it uses a control that I could obtain the source of?
OS: OpenSuSE, Ubuntu, Win XP Pro
wx: svn
Compiler: gcc 4.5.1, VC 2008, eVC 4

"If it was hard to write it should be hard to read..." - the unknown coder
"Try not! Do. Or do not. There is no try." - Yoda

Tom82
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Post by Tom82 » Wed Aug 03, 2005 2:30 pm

no i am not specialy talking about an component.
i am planing to realize an auto complete combobox.[/url]
Developing for and with WinXp
wxWidgets 2.6.1
+ Jorg's wxTreeMultiCtrl
with VC++ 2003

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Ryan Norton
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Post by Ryan Norton » Mon Aug 15, 2005 6:13 pm

Resolution?
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