Android Cat Herding
Guest Blog for Black Duck Software
Part I – Synchronizing / Harmonizing Android Source Code & Licenses
In earlier Black Duck blog posts, I highlighted the complexity underlying the Android mobile application platform, especially complications arising from the multi-sourced nature of the OS and its enabling middleware.
At the close of that blog, I listed five challenge areas and promised to elaborate, and to follow up with ways to address them. In Part I, I’ll expand on the challenges, in Part II, I will examine some solutions.
1. Unique Licensing and Copyright of Patches / Contributions
While the Android project promotes a global Apache 2.0 licensing regime, there is no formal submission or copyright assignment process (cp. those for Linux and for GNU projects). This somwhat casual patch submission and management process results in diverse and sometimes uncertain provenance of Android platform code (see my earlier blog for examples from the Black Duck Software study).
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