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Questions tagged [software]

For questions involving programming underlying computers and machines. Consider using the [open-source-software] tag if the question is about open source software or licensing.

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What font should I use for my own software/hardware license?

I am just interested in creating my own software/hardware license. I want to ask - what font is appropriate for writing such legal document?
Autistic Emperor's user avatar
-4 votes
0 answers
60 views

Legally creating server emulator for proprietary game

Can I create an alternative implementation (server emulator) of the server part of the game legally? Details: An alternative implementation involves reverse engineering the game and creating a server ...
JustAnotherUser's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
62 views

Is there any law to reference to support copyright derivation wrt software libraries depending on the availability of alternatives?

In a 2019 answer that the bot has just pumped there is an excellent description of a way I have heard how the the rules regarding copyright derivation in respect to software libraries function: I don'...
User65535's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
76 views

What's the point of registering with "Agence pour la Protection des Programmes" (Software Protection Agency) in addition to pushing the code to GitHub

I read the following in this license in a github.com repo: This software has been registered with "Agence pour la Protection des Programmes" (Software Protection Agency) by Inria and Adobe (...
Franck Dernoncourt's user avatar
-4 votes
1 answer
81 views

General legallity of selling advanced malicious software systems [duplicate]

Generally, within the United States, would it be legal to: Develop an advanced network exploitation system that has capabilities like The NSO Group Pegesus Spyware. Market that software to any US ...
Wesley Jones's user avatar
-2 votes
1 answer
114 views

"Lifetime Use" Software [closed]

I purchased a software suite from a well-known company that was advertised as "Lifetime Use." After not using it for some time, I tried installing them and my key wasn't accepted. I had to ...
TE5LA's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
139 views

Could a software patent be used against the inventor of the algorithm?

Since in practice algorithms can actually be patented, sometimes I wonder if it is possible for example for a company to take a open-source code I wrote and released and somehow file a patent for its ...
StackOverflowToxicityVictim's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
251 views

Why are software licenses required to access a piece of software?

According to the GTA 4 EULA: LICENSE. Subject to this Agreement and its terms and conditions, Licensor hereby grants you the nonexclusive, non-transferable, limited right and license to use one copy ...
Ignis Incendio's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
76 views

How does GNU/GPL apply to internal applications? [closed]

I'm writing an internal application for my company. I'd like to use a package released on a GNU/GPL license. Due to internal nature of the application I am obviously free to present its source code to ...
Spook's user avatar
  • 101
9 votes
3 answers
4k views

Can you legally look at decompiled software code and reverse engineer it?

Something I've been curious about, I looked it up and didn't find any straightforward answers. I've heard of clean room engineering where programmers don't look at the code at all of the software they ...
Oneechan69's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
47 views

How do GPL 2, 3 and other copy-left licenses apply in cases of "software as a service" (SaaS) systems?

GPL-style licenses are pretty effective at ensuring the underlying code cannot contribute to proprietary binary programs. But in the contemporary world of SaaS, are there not many ways around this? ...
Seán Healy's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
61 views

Can I impose licensing terms on the content that users create or transmit using my program?

This comment about email client monoculture made me wonder if what the poster is describing is possible. Say I write and distribute a piece of communications software, like Outlook or Trillian or one ...
interfect's user avatar
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23 votes
5 answers
34k views

Deleting Software I Wrote Upon Leaving Employment of a Company

For some context, I live the US, in an at-will state, and there's no employment contract involved. When I was younger, I worked at a warehouse doing inventory-related activities as an hourly employee ...
zelarian's user avatar
  • 332
1 vote
1 answer
118 views

To what extent does strict liability apply to open source software?

I'm curious to what extent strict liability could apply to open source software in cases where what is shared isn't really a product, or even something that is intended to be incorporated into a ...
Spencer's user avatar
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-1 votes
1 answer
152 views

Is Microsoft allowed to bring Playstation games (that were ported to PC) to Xbox, or would they face legal backlash?

Sony's Playstation has several games exclusive to their console (e.g. Ratchet and Clank Rift Apart, God of War, Horizon Forbidden Dawn). Recently, Sony ported these games to PC, making them available ...
chausies's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
123 views

Can I legally bypass software when their data is freely available? [closed]

I have built an app on top of an existing ancient software application. That ancient application exists of two parts; a software application and some actual hardware that provides specific sensor data ...
gerb0n's user avatar
  • 119
0 votes
0 answers
79 views

How to prevent legal issues when allowing anonymous users to upload arbitrary content?

A website like https://cloudconvert.com allows any anonymous user to upload arbitrary video/audio/file and convert it to another format. It seems to save the file temporarily for 2 hours before ...
Lance's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
98 views

Does re-implementing a software API violate copyright?

Company A sells a software services. To promote adoption, it publicly documents the programmable interface. Company B develops a competing software servic implementing the same interface (but blackbox ...
Paul Draper's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
37 views

When using material that requests attribution, do you have to when using internally?

FlatIcon requests that we add attribution (it is required according to the website). In the case of apps (my case), it states the following: Paste this link on the website where your app is available ...
Parrotmaster's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
98 views

Is making a copycat proprietary software against the law?

Suppose I build and sell closed-source and proprietary software that exactly looks like Microsoft Visual Studio 2022, both in appearance and functionality, but uses a different source code, name, and ...
user366312's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
162 views

Can Microsoft be held responsible for printers missing after a software update?

I want to learn about software liability but most articles on the internet are very generic. So I am asking this specific question to learn by example. Let's assume after a Windows update printers are ...
zomega's user avatar
  • 549
-2 votes
2 answers
132 views

Does the end user need a license for embedded software? Or just the manufacturer?

According to this answer, legal responsibility for operations performed via computer isn't as simple as always attaching to the owner of the computer or to the person who hit the button. It attaches ...
interfect's user avatar
  • 3,501
-4 votes
3 answers
150 views

If I pay for a software, do I have the rights to access its source code?

In other words, can I reverse engineer the software that I paid for? I feel like since I spent money, I should be able to know what the software is actually doing and does it have any hidden malware ...
No Name's user avatar
  • 436
1 vote
1 answer
121 views

Is it illegal to simultaneously run instances of a software more than I physically own?

I own old gaming consoles such as the Nintendo DS. The consoles have aged significantly and they have a hard time recognizing legit cartridges, so I dumped the contents of dozens of carts on a 3rd ...
omf39953's user avatar
0 votes
5 answers
305 views

Who is accountable if a truly driverless car hits and kills a person? [duplicate]

Last night, I couldn't sleep, and in my wakeful state, I allowed the river of thoughts to take me wherever it wanted to flow. This led me to a question: "Who is accountable if a truly driverless ...
Lion Lai's user avatar
  • 117
0 votes
1 answer
77 views

Does the personal data use required to distribute software online make activity "commercial"?

The EU Cyber Resilience Act (CRA) has an exception for non-commercial/open source software. As an exception to the exception, commercial activity seems to explicitly include "the use of personal ...
User65535's user avatar
  • 7,170
8 votes
2 answers
6k views

What stops stolen software from offering a valid license?

A common pattern in software distribution is to have an installer program that pops up and offers the user a license to the software, and prompts the user to accept it. This End User License Agreement ...
interfect's user avatar
  • 3,501
2 votes
1 answer
330 views

Trying to get a complete set of SCOTUS opinions

I am trying to get a complete set of SCOTUS opinions, and have been trying to use courtlistener.com for the purpose, but the API is horrifically under-documented, and crippled. If anyone can tell me ...
Igor Rivin's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
3k views

Are developers data processors?

This question is inspired by this other question: What are an employed/contracted software developer's responsibilities under the GDPR? I wanted to understand more precisely the concept of a data ...
User8's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
89 views

Is it legal for two or more users to use a Microsoft Windows computer at the same time?

I happened across a video called 7 Users on 1 PC! - but is it legal? that is about an older product that allowed a computer with Windows XP or Windows server to be used by 7 different users at once ...
Alex Cannon's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
309 views

Will this be considered proof of purchase?

Each product has a traceable serial number, and to operate the product, it must be registered and activated through the manufacturer's software. The registration and activation process requires the ...
Skies's user avatar
  • 338
2 votes
2 answers
191 views

If a person is working for two companies as a regular employee who owns the copyright to software created by that employee?

The general rule is that if you are an employee software you create in the course of your employment belongs to your employer. In the United States an employee can work for more than one company ...
zelinka's user avatar
  • 131
2 votes
0 answers
407 views

When will the baseline patents for encoding/decoding the AAC format expire?

The MP4 container is the most ubiquitous video format in the world. It is commonly used with the H.264 video codec, of which there has been a lot written about when the patents for this codec will ...
ripandtear's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
66 views

Why is disclosing that you offer no warranties so prevalent in documents?

I was signing an NDA and noticed that there was a clause on the owner offering no warranty relating to the document. I never particularly understood this. It is often prevalent in copyleft licenses ...
shr4pnel's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
111 views

Can a company that releases code as GPL, use it privately?

If a company has a Github repo under GPL license, can they, as the owners of the original code, distribute closed-source copies of it, i.e do they have a different right over the code ?
Mah Neh's user avatar
  • 39
0 votes
1 answer
49 views

USA Employment Law: Job Search with Moonlighting

I am a Software Developer contractor but I also want to have my own side-hustle business. This side hustle business might contain programming, research or developing new software products. However, it ...
jbdundas's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
241 views

Can ex-employer ask/require in a severance agreement that if I plan to disclose information about the severance agreement, I must tell them first?

Can a severance agreement ask/force an employee to inform the ex-employer if they plan to disclose the severance agreement? My understanding is that the National Labor Relations Act allows me to share ...
abaines's user avatar
  • 111
4 votes
0 answers
158 views

Would it be legal to avoid Unity (Game Engine) licensing by having the end-user build the project

Is it legal (assuming US) if instead of paying for a proprietary software and accepting their terms and conditions for distribution, to require the user to own this proprietary software and use it as ...
Cedric Martens's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
101 views

Can a software's dictionary file include popular culture terms?

Example: can a dictionary included in a word processor include pop culture terms, such as character names, so they are recognized as valid words (not triggering autocorrect or spellcheck) etc. Should ...
user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
100 views

How did software copyright work in the US before 1978?

Prior to the Copyright Act of 1976 (which, confusingly, only went into effect in 1978) the copyright rules were different. One of the things that was introduced was that after the beginning of 1978, ...
David Given's user avatar
16 votes
2 answers
5k views

Is it legal to backdate monthly software license fees if you reactivate a license?

I live in the UK and use software from a US-based company. I currently pay a software licence fee of $150 every six months. This covers access to support and access to monthly software updates, new ...
Homercles's user avatar
  • 179
2 votes
2 answers
270 views

What is the copyright status of this piece of code from 1976?

Back in 1976, Steve Wozniak of Apple fame published a computer program library in volume 1, issue 7 of Dr Dobbs Journal of Computer Calisthenics and Orthodontia (Running Light Without Overbyte), a ...
David Given's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
132 views

Question concerning the legality of Software Patents

I have a question concering the public reveal of new patents filed by Nintendo Co., Ltd., and how such patents are legal given how general the concepts are, and how this would effect development of ...
DanceroftheStars's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
91 views

Firmware code written under GPLv3 was modified. What should be published? [closed]

The firmware for an embedded device (e.g., a toaster) is modified significantly. Algorithms are rewritten from scratch, the code is made compatible with different hardware, etc. The end (hardware) ...
Harry Zalessky's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
4k views

Is a "login timestamp" considered as personal data according to GDPR?

If software is saving the timestamp of the last login of a user, would that timestamp itself be considered personal data by GDPR?
Mr. Eivind's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
342 views

GDPR and privacy policy compliance for software used internally by customer company

We are developing software that are sold to and used by other companies. In the software, certain types of personal data, like name, email and phone number, can be stored when a user registers. The ...
Mr. Eivind's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
510 views

Does replacing the operating system on my laptop void my warranty?

I purchased a typical mid-range laptop in late March this year. It came with Windows preinstalled. As soon as I unpacked the computer I removed Windows and installed Linux. I have been using it ...
lbx1807's user avatar
  • 31
-1 votes
1 answer
72 views

I need to know if I need a privacy policy for a computer app [closed]

make computer apps using Winforms and such the apps that i make are computer side only nothing gets stored off the computer nothing gets moved anywhere else lets say i have an app that needs your ...
Zerium4's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
296 views

Is it legal to change user agent?

Assume (hypothetically), I'm using jsoup to download certain news website in my public android app. When I don't change user-agent in jsoup it redirects me to another website. Is it legal to change ...
xralf's user avatar
  • 129
2 votes
1 answer
169 views

Is the usage of an OCR service causing copyright issues when a photo of a book page is analyzed?

Here's the scenario A user takes a photo using an app from a book, which might have be copyrighted. The app then uploads the photo to a cloud service in order to analyze it using OCR The app receives ...
HowlingCoder's user avatar

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