Re: [Rd] commercial software selling a R module - question about GPL license rights

From: Liaw, Andy <andy_liaw_at_merck.com>
Date: Wed 19 Apr 2006 - 17:51:36 GMT


I was under the impression that PP communicates with R via SOAP, but what do I know...

If I didn't read your description wrong, the "R Collection" contains PP code (PilotScript?) for generating R code to be run by R, but does not include R itself. If that's the case, I don't think it has any licensing problem. If I write some R code that generates SAS code (God forbid), I doubt that constitute violation of SAS license.

Just my $0.02...

Andy

From: Philippe Grosjean
>
> Hello all,
>
> Sorry for this email not directly related to R developement.
> I just come
> from a nice demonstration session from Scitegic about their Pipeline
> Pilot (PP) software, and especially their 'R collection'
> which brings R
> calculations into the software
> (http://www.scitegic.com/documents/RStats_Collection.pdf).
>
> I looked carefully on the way they do it: they pass data from PP to R
> using text files, they call R.exe using a R script and input - output
> files, like:
>
> R.exe --nosave --no-environ --no-resore-data < script.R > output.txt
>
> And in the script, you have:
>
> read.table(...)
>
> which imports the data just exported from PP in an CVS file by the
> component. I don't want to discuss here the ugly and extremely
> inefficient solution they use to call R on their data, but anyway...
>
> So far, so good, they respect the GPL license since R is not embedded
> into PP, and you have to download and install it separately.
>
> But they also provide a series of "R component" ready to use like 'R
> ANOVA', 'R PCA', R Neural Net', etc... which are basically R scripts
> with replaceable variables (replacement is done by PP before
> feeding the
> script to the R engine). For instance, you will have:
>
> parameter <- $(PPvariable)
>
> in the R script. In the PP component, you have an option to
> specify the
> value of 'PPvariable', let's say: PPvariable = 10, and the
> replacement
> done in the R script is:
>
> parameter <- 10
>
> before to feed this script to R. So, everything appears
> transparent to
> the end-user who parameterizes the scripts from within the PP
> GUI. That
> is what they call "each component generates an R script
> on-the-fly"...
> (sic!)
>
> However, I was suprised to learn that the Pipeline Pilot R
> Collection is
> not GPL and is not free (in term of money, i.e., you have to pay
> 3500$/year to use it). I am not sure, but I think they break the GPL
> license here since they use a commercial license for, basically, a
> collection of R scripts embedded in their 'PP components'.
>
> Anyone with better expertise than me could look at this, please?
>
> Best,
>
> Philippe Grosjean
>
> --
> ..............................................<}))><........
> ) ) ) ) )
> ( ( ( ( ( Prof. Philippe Grosjean
> ) ) ) ) )
> ( ( ( ( ( Numerical Ecology of Aquatic Systems
> ) ) ) ) ) Mons-Hainaut University, Belgium
> ( ( ( ( (
> ..............................................................
>
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https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-devel Received on Thu Apr 20 03:53:43 2006

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