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Licensing GCal Software

Monday, 03 June 2013 / Published in Editorial, GBC / 4,048 views

From the Governing Body Commission of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness

(Editor’s note: This the 313 of the 2013 GBC resolutions. You can find the Minutes Of The 2013 Annual General Meeting in our archives section or directly here)

Whereas Gopalapriya Das, in consultation with the rest of the GBC Vaishnava Calendar Committee, has written a computer program called “GCal” that has had success in providing ISKCON devotees with a dependable calendar calculation system. It has been very well accepted in the devotee community.

GCal was developed on behalf of the GBC Body and it is owned by the GBC West Bengal society. All along, the GBC Vaisnava Calendar Committee has been planning that GCal would become an “open source” program, in the sense that the source code of the program would be available to anyone who agrees to abide by certain licensing terms. This can result in the improvement of the program, since other programmers can study the code and perhaps find problems to be corrected. It also will tend to increase the credibility of the program, since nothing is hidden from the knowledgeable user. However, the committee has not yet released the source code.

With the burgeoning of different kinds of hand-held devices, tablets, etc., over the last few years, there is now a demand for GCal to run on these different platforms. Gopalapriya Das, however, has at present little time for GCal programming work. Recently, a number of different devotees have approached the committee with an interest in porting GCal to these other platforms. By releasing the GCal source code now to whomever wants to do whatever they want with it, under the terms of a general open-source software license, it is likely that GCal will become even more successful as a valuable tool for devotees. Since the software belongs to the GBC Body, the GBC Society needs to give permission to do that.

RESOLVED:

That the ISKCON Governing Body Commission Society hereby agrees that its copyrighted software package “Gaurabda Calendar (GCal)” authored by Gopalapriya Das may be licensed to members of the general public under a suitable open-source licensing agreement. The GBC Vaisnava Calendar Committee, presently constituted with members Bhanu Swami, Gopalapriya Das, Sadasivananda Das, and Bhaktarupa Das, are authorized, in consultation with legal advisors, to finalize the terms of such licensing agreements and devise policies and procedures whereby such agreements may be executed.

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