paying for software

Tue Oct 19 12:05:06 EST 1993

In article <12OCT199317092534 at>
mathog at (David Mathog) writes:
>Anybody in the mood for a discussion of costs for publicly funded software?
[Stuff deleted]
>End of background.
>So, how do you all feel about this?  Here are some of the points that I'd
>like feedback on:
>1. Is it reasonable for government agencies to fund software development
>and then cede ownership of the resulting software to a University?  In other
>words, didn't we already pay for FLEECE?
I thought that it was normal that software belonged to the one who paid for it
(in this case NSF). In the copyright notice you can put in the names who develo
ped it. I think it is absurd that the goverment has to pay for software it alre
ady paid for (this is the case if I understand it correctly).
>2. What are the appropriate criteria for saying that a government agency
>did or did not pay for the development of a particular piece of software?
>This one is not quite so simple as it might appear - for instance they may
>have purchased all of the machines and compilers, but not paid for the
>graduate student stipends, or vice versa.
>3. What is a reasonable distribution cost for software retrieved over the
ShareWare distributeurs ussaly charge $5 or so per 720 kb diskette. I don't kno
w the exact costs of internet, but it is probally cheaper per kb.
>4. Can anybody think of a justification for charging per user license fees
>under the NSF software guideline shown above?  After all, the software is
>distibuted only once, so there should be no further duplication or
>distribution costs once a single copy has been set up on a multiuser
>5. For publicly funded software, are there any cases where it should not be
>required that software be made available via anonymous FTP over the Internet?
>6. Should we be giving grants for software development to researchers at
>Universities that have policies like the one in question?
>7. Anything else in this vein you'd care to discuss?
How about software developers paid by a manufacturer of software. Is the softwa
re there also owned by the developer and not the manufacturer? I think the abov
e is exactly the same case!
Henk van de Kamer

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