07 September 2009

Which license should I choose for an open source project

I was thinking on starting a (very, very, small) open source project. Just to get the hang of how it could work. I was thinking on hosting the project on Google Code. When creating a project there is a list of licenses to choose from. Even though Google Code has narrowed down the list it still is a list of 9 licenses:

So what to choose? Well this blog gave me some thoughts: http://google-opensource.blogspot.com/2008/05/standing-against-license-proliferation.html. It basically narrows downs the list to two: Apache License or GPLv3. And from there it is much easier to choose. As a software developer and not a lawyer I don't have the knowledge (or time!) to understand what the different licenses means. I'm going to have to trust someone else on this.

In my case I think the Apache License is probably the way to go. Since I'm working in a commercial company, I know that any of the GPLv3 and GPLv2 license is a big no-no. So if any company are going to use my software it must be the Apache License. And for me it is ok if another company makes profit on my code without giving back to the community.

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