October 14, 2007
On forking and contributor agreements
Paula Rooney has written an excellent article on a dispute in the Open Office developer community that could possibly lead to a fork of the free office suite. A fork occurs when someone puts out their own version of a piece of software that is separate from the Ã¢â¬ÅmainlineÃ¢â¬Â or Ã¢â¬Ågenerally accepted as officialÃ¢â¬Â version. The dividing issue in the case of Open Office is the contributor agreement that Sun requires all developers to sign before any code they create can become a part of the project. Somebody didnÃ¢â¬â¢t want to sign it, and the disagreement escalated to the point that a fork is being considered.