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Many people have contacted us requesting a license to produce MegaSquirt® printed circuit boards and/or daughter boards.
However, you not allowed by patent and copyright laws to directly copy any MegaSquirt® board, and you cannot modify a MegaSquirt® design without the express written permission of Bowling and Grippo. If you want to produce boards for sale, you will need a license from Bowling and Grippo.
However, we DO NOT grant licenses to people just wanting to change a resistor or two [or any other component(s)], or to those who have the resources to produce only a few boards.
The MegaSquirt® board designs and software are patented and copyrighted and can not be duplicated, even in modified form, for purposes of commercial sale without the express written permission of Bowling and Grippo. MegaSquirt® products are sold as total system controllers. While you can add to these products with your own accessories, you can not duplicate MegaSquirt® boards in whole or in part. So a product with a printed circuit board based on a modification of an MegaSquirt® design is not allowed. A product with just an MegaSquirt® processor or daughter board, but a non-B&G main board not allowed. Any system that uses B&G products must include both the MegaSquirt® processor and MegaSquirt® main board. For the MegaSquirt® Module, we allow somewhat more flexibility in that this could be mounted on a user-designed printed circuit 'adapter' board if that were desired, because it is sold as something more than a daughter board, but less than a complete main board.
If your plans add substantial functionality to a MegaSquirt® board, and you have the resources to offer the boards in commercially worthwhile quantities, please contact us to ask about licensing.
Without a license or express written permission from Bowling and Grippo, you are NOT allowed to produce ANY boards based on any of the MegaSquirt® designs.
Intellectual Property Rights
As far as intellectual property (IP) rights, people often confuse "open-source" and intellectual property. As stated earlier, we all know that the MegaSquirt® firmware is targeted to MegaSquirt® hardware, and there are avenues available for those who wish to leverage this for their own products. The base software is copyrighted by B&G. Although the source code is available for use and modification, the copyright dictates its use on specific hardware. And the intellectual properties are also copyrighted. As well, aspects of the MegaSquirt® system are patented. In fact, when applying for a patent ALL aspects of the device needs to be disclosed, this disclosure is what dictates the intellectual property. This protects the firmware's IP regardless of any re-write activity - it does not matter if it is in Java, C++, or Fortran. As our attorney says, "There are thousands of words out there but they can arranged in a certain order and copyrighted". Conversely, you cannot take an existing copyrighted work, such as a novel, and publish it another font or a different page size, or even another language, and claim it as an original work. It is the idea behind the work that is copyrighted, not the details of its form. This works equally with songs, books, and computer software. What we are conveying here is based on direct legal counsel but we urge people to consult an attorney on this subject if they have questions, and certainly before taking any actions.
Here is a good web site on the subject of "Contributory Infringement" and the protection of intellectual property:
There is more on MegaSquirt® copyrights and licenses here: http://www.megamanual.com/copy.htm