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To view the entire IBP Time-Delayed Software License click here.  To download the text file, just right-click the link and select "save as".  The info below is the license overview, which is a quick way to learn what it's all about.


Software License Overview

In an ideal world, all software would be "open-source".  That is, everyone could view and modify all source code for computer software they use.  The problem with open-source software is that anyone can create a copy of the computer code, thus the economic model (AKA the ability to sell it) does not work.

For example, lets say a software developer named Bob, spends multiple years creating a fantastic computer program.  Bob then releases it to the world as open-source, and asks for donations to help reimburse him for his efforts.  Alice (who is also a software developer) sees this, and recognizes how great the program is.  She copies the computer code for free (making it her own), then with a fraction of the effort Bob put into developing the software, she advertises the software to the world in a better way than Bob did.

Now both Bob and Alice have similar (or maybe identical) software programs out there, but Alice's is marketed better, and her version is what becomes popular, and she makes tons of money.  Bob ends up becoming destitute and homeless.

On the other hand, if Bob's computer program was "closed-source", he would have been the person to make the money from his hard work (if anyone did).  However, if Bob is unethical, he might place malicious computer code in the program to setup a backdoor, key-stroke logger, virus, or other bad things.

The solution ---> This license enables developer(s) the ability to have [0..3] years of exclusive "closed-source" computer software, when they can attempt to earn money from their hard work.  At the end of this time-delay of [0..3] years, they are required to release the source code for their computer program.

What this does, is create the ability for developers to be rewarded for their hard work, but at the same time the developer knows the computer code will eventually become open-source, so they will be less likely to add malicious computer code to their program.  It also allows people to pickup abandoned software, and make changes or bug fixes.
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