Boost logo

Boost :

From: Walter Landry (wlandry_at_[hidden])
Date: 2006-09-21 13:47:36

Mateusz Loskot <mateusz_at_[hidden]> wrote:
> Hi,
> First, please, forgive me if this subject have been discussed already,
> but I couldn't find anything in the lists archives and Boost docs.
> Today, my friend was told (warned) on the #c++ IRC channel that
> Boost uses some technologies already patented by IBM (and may be other
> entities), like RCU or SMR (and may be more).
> I have no idea if this is true or not, so I'd like to ask some questions
> regarding this warning:
> 1. Does Boost use any patented technologies?

Yes. There is a huge volume of truly silly patents out there
(e.g. xor), so it is basically impossible for Boost not to use
patented techniques.

As far as I know, Boost has not received any cease-and-desist letters.
But that does not mean Boost will never get one. Is is a Sword of
Damocles over every software project. Software patents really suck.

> 2. If it does, and for example it uses some in library X,
> does it mean I can not use library Y (without copying X) in my program
> because of patents-derived restrictions?
> In other words, if Boost uses any patented technologies in library X,
> does it influence other libraries?
> What are implications regarding it?

Ripping out library X should be sufficient. However, many of Boost's
libraries depend on each other, so it may not be a simple task.

Walter Landry

Boost list run by bdawes at, gregod at, cpdaniel at, john at