Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Good News!

This is obscure, but I ran across this a couple of years ago. Did you know that you could not write an application to make a GIF file without a license from Unisys. You could not, in the U.S., do this until June 20th of this year. I got this info from Unisys's own site. I assume that now one can use the Lempel Ziv Welch algorithm in any application one chooses, as long as you don't distribute it to a country that has still got patent protection on the LZW algorithm. Why is this important? Because I've been wanting to write a Perl Module to compress and decompress files using the original UNIX compress command. This command just happens to also use the LZW algorithm. I can now safely write one for in-house use, I believe.

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