Center for Advanced Study & Research on Innovation Policy


Center Research

CASRIP files amicus brief in landmark Supreme Court case Bilski v. Kappos on the proper scope of patentable subject matter

Bilski v. Kappos Amicus Curiae brief

Worldwide IP Resource Development Project

Global IP Case Law and IP Resources Databases

Conference Proceedings

International Intellectual Property Seminar: EU IP Enforcement: Present and Future

Simple Public License (SimPL)

The GNU General Public License (GPL) is one of the most well-known and influential licenses in the Free Software/Open Source movement. Many significant Free/Open Source projects are made available under the GPL, including the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) and the kernel of the Linux operating system.

However, many people believe that the GPL is longer and more complex than it needs to be. Some say that the license is too ambiguous, and many say that it is too wordy. As Linus Torvalds said, "In many ways, my only gripe with the GPL has been how many words it seems to need to say something very simple." Even the Free Software Foundation has stated that they "enthusiastically invite those who believe that the GPL can protect freedom just as well in fewer words to join our comment process and show us how this can be done."

Professor Bob Gomulkiewicz has written the Simple Public License (SimPL) in response to these challenges. The SimPL is intended to demonstrate a simpler approach to the GPL that achieves the same goals. Above all else, it is intended to be read and understood by the average open source developer, who may have only a limited understanding of the words of the GPL.

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