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[bioontology-support] Ontoportal licensing confusion

David P Lutz dlutz at mitre.org
Sun Jun 28 07:41:22 PDT 2020


We're doing an evaluation of ontology and vocabulary management systems as part of a larger project. OntoPortal is (by a large margin) the preferred system. Our intended use doesn't involve public access nor interacting with other Bio/OntoPortals (we're not in the bio-med space) . We have spun up an AWS AMI of the Virtual Appliance (with trial license) and are very excited by its capabilities.
However, the requirement for a license from OntoPortal.org (a license beyond the open source license of the code itself) has raised some questions and may prevent us from considering OntoPortal. Is the license from OntoPortal.org strictly a license for the prebuilt Virtual Appliances (VMWare and AWS AMI)? A license to be part of the network of Bio/OntoPortal appliances? The documentation on GitHub hints that building the VA ourselves is difficult/impossible and it wasn't clear whether that would also require an Ontology.org license (since the licensing mechanism is built into the code). (You can imagine a lawyer's reaction to any plan that includes "and we then disable the licensing mechanism"). Beyond the letter of the license, we would also prefer not to violate the open-source spirit of the OntoPortal project.
Any information even of the I'm-not-a-lawyer kind, would be greatly appreciated.
      Thanks
          Dave Lutz

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