Octave fior Android Requires Payment

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Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Thomas D. Dean-2
I tried Octave for Android.

It installs Ok, and initializes, presenting a window asking for a
"donation", suggesting $10.

If no payment is made, the app starts, presents a "Setting up Octave"
message and hangs, forever.

Seems to me to be a violation of the GPL.

I removed Octave for Android from my device and will never use or
support it.

I do support/donate to octave and FSF.

Tom Dean

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

tmacchant
--- On Mon, 2014/5/19, Thomas D. Dean wrote:

> I tried Octave for Android.
>
> It installs Ok, and initializes, presenting a window asking for a "donation", suggesting $10.
>
> If no payment is made, the app starts, presents a "Setting up Octave" message and hangs, forever.
>
> Seems to me to be a violation of the GPL.
>
> I removed Octave for Android from my device and will never use or support it.
>
> I do support/donate to octave and FSF.
>

I also tried Octave for Android on my Xperia Z1. Donation message also appeared for me. However, octave did not hang up and some calculations were worked correctly. However, plot failed due to missing libdl.so for gnuplot.

I do not know that the donation message violates the  GPL or not.  But hang up phenomenon seems not relate  whether you donate or not. Perhaps the hang-up is machine and OS version dependent.

Tatsuro  

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

andy buckle



On 19 May 2014 04:58, Tatsuro MATSUOKA <[hidden email]> wrote:
--- On Mon, 2014/5/19, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
> I tried Octave for Android.
>
> It installs Ok, and initializes, presenting a window asking for a "donation", suggesting $10.
>
> If no payment is made, the app starts, presents a "Setting up Octave" message and hangs, forever.
>
> Seems to me to be a violation of the GPL.
>
> I removed Octave for Android from my device and will never use or support it.
>
> I do support/donate to octave and FSF.
>

I also tried Octave for Android on my Xperia Z1. Donation message also appeared for me. However, octave did not hang up and some calculations were worked correctly. However, plot failed due to missing libdl.so for gnuplot.

I do not know that the donation message violates the  GPL or not.  But hang up phenomenon seems not relate  whether you donate or not. Perhaps the hang-up is machine and OS version dependent.

Tatsuro



I was able to use it after ignoring the payment option (Nexus 5).  I appreciated the effort of producing a quick and easy to install version, so paid $5 after using it for a bit longer.

I was able to plot after installing the separate octave gnuplot package from the play store. It seems to produce a bitmap and then give you a choice of image viewers.

--
/* andy buckle */

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

tmacchant
--- On Mon, 2014/5/19, Andy Buckle wrote:

> On 19 May 2014 04:58, Tatsuro MATSUOKA <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> --- On Mon, 2014/5/19, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
> > I tried Octave for Android.
> >
> > It installs Ok, and initializes, presenting a window asking for a "donation", suggesting $10.
> >
> > If no payment is made, the app starts, presents a "Setting up Octave" message and hangs, forever.
> >
> > Seems to me to be a violation of the GPL.
> >
> > I removed Octave for Android from my device and will never use or support it.
> >
> > I do support/donate to octave and FSF.
> >
>
> I also tried Octave for Android on my Xperia Z1. Donation message also appeared for me. However, octave did not hang up and some calculations were worked correctly. However, plot failed due to missing libdl.so for gnuplot.
>
> I do not know that the donation message violates the  GPL or not.  But hang up phenomenon seems not relate  whether you donate or not. Perhaps the hang-up is machine and OS version dependent.
>
> Tatsuro
>
>
>
> I was able to use it after ignoring the payment option (Nexus 5).  I appreciated the effort of producing a quick and easy to install version, so paid $5 after using it for a bit longer.
>
> I was able to plot after installing the separate octave gnuplot package from the play store. It seems to produce a bitmap and then give you a choice of image viewers.
>
> --
> /* andy buckle */
Andy
After installing gnuplot package, I can see the plot.  Thanks!
Tatsuro

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Francesco Potortì
In reply to this post by Thomas D. Dean-2
>I tried Octave for Android.
>
>It installs Ok, and initializes, presenting a window asking for a
>"donation", suggesting $10.
>
>If no payment is made, the app starts, presents a "Setting up Octave"
>message and hangs, forever.
>
>Seems to me to be a violation of the GPL.

Even if it refused to install without payment, I don't see how it could
violate the GPL, because no free software licence can force anyone to
give away a working program.

Only obligation is that, if you distribute (gratis or for a fee, as-is
or modified) a GPL-covered program that you obtained somehow, you must
use the same licence and provide the source.

--
Francesco Potortì (ricercatore)        Voice:  +39.050.621.3058
ISTI - Area della ricerca CNR          Mobile: +39.348.8283.107
via G. Moruzzi 1, I-56124 Pisa         Skype:  wnlabisti
(entrance 20, 1st floor, room C71)     Web:    http://fly.isti.cnr.it

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Thomas D. Dean-2
In reply to this post by Thomas D. Dean-2
On 05/18/14 20:58, Tatsuro MATSUOKA wrote:

 > I do not know that the donation message violates the  GPL or not.
But hang up phenomenon seems not relate  whether you donate or not.
Perhaps the hang-up is machine and OS version dependent.


If you refuse to pay until the "number of free uses" expires, the
application goes into a loop that lasted more than 5 minutes!

The source code is, as far as I can tell, not available.

<edit>
I found the source, I think...

https://github.com/corbinlc/octave4android

I may have contributed, if, it was NOT required.

I believe some violation of the GPL has happened.  Read
http://octave.1599824.n4.nabble.com/Octave-on-Android-td4658392.html
See the ODE package comments.

Tom Dean

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso-2
In reply to this post by Thomas D. Dean-2
On Sun, 2014-05-18 at 20:22 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
> It installs Ok, and initializes, presenting a window asking for a
> "donation", suggesting $10.
>
> If no payment is made, the app starts, presents a "Setting up
> Octave" message and hangs, forever.
>
> Seems to me to be a violation of the GPL.

Charging money is not a violation of the GPL. As one of the Octave
developers, I encourage any distributor of Octave to charge as much
money as they wish for it as long as they obey the terms of the GPL
(amongst others, distribute source to anyone they sell Octave to).

As far as I know, Corbin Champion is distributing this source:

    https://github.com/corbinlc/octave4android/tree/master/octave

- Jordi G. H.




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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Mike Miller
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 15:17:27 -0400, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:

> On Sun, 2014-05-18 at 20:22 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
>> It installs Ok, and initializes, presenting a window asking for a
>> "donation", suggesting $10.
>>
>> If no payment is made, the app starts, presents a "Setting up
>> Octave" message and hangs, forever.
>>
>> Seems to me to be a violation of the GPL.
>
> Charging money is not a violation of the GPL. As one of the Octave
> developers, I encourage any distributor of Octave to charge as much
> money as they wish for it as long as they obey the terms of the GPL
> (amongst others, distribute source to anyone they sell Octave to).
>
> As far as I know, Corbin Champion is distributing this source:
>
>     https://github.com/corbinlc/octave4android/tree/master/octave

To add to that, please try to assume good faith and just contact the
author of the Android package and ask for the source if you're unable
to find it yourself.

Thanks,

--
mike

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso-2
In reply to this post by Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso-2
On Mon, 2014-05-19 at 15:17 -0400, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
> As far as I know, Corbin Champion is distributing this source:
>
>     https://github.com/corbinlc/octave4android/tree/master/octave

I should further note, if you're offended by Corbin charging money for
his work in getting Octave working on Android, the source above makes
it possible for you to duplicate his work and avoid paying him by
undertaking the chore of building Octave for Android yourself.

Again, I have no actually attempted to build Octave for Android from
Corbin's repository. It would be nice if someone could confirm this is
possible. If that other person can duplicate Corbin's build, I
encourage that other person to also charge money for their efforts.

- Jordi G. H.



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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Thomas D. Dean-2
On 05/19/14 12:24, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
I did not see my latest message on the list, sorry if it is a duplication.

The Octave app was listed as a free app until I installed it and was
surprised by the requirement for payment.

If the app had been listed as $10 to cover distrubution costs, I most
likely would have purchased it.  Now, NO.

> My previous attempt to reply:
If you refuse to pay until the "number of free uses" expires, the
application goes into a loop that lasted more than 5 minutes!

The source code is, as far as I can tell, not available.

<edit>
I found the source, I think...

https://github.com/corbinlc/octave4android

I may have contributed, if, it was NOT required.

I believe some violation of the GPL has happened.  Read
http://octave.1599824.n4.nabble.com/Octave-on-Android-td4658392.html
and
http://octave.1599824.n4.nabble.com/Octave-on-Android-td4658392i40.html#a4664194

Tom Dean


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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso-2
On Mon, 2014-05-19 at 12:42 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
> On 05/19/14 12:24, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:

> The Octave app was listed as a free app until I installed it and was
> surprised by the requirement for payment.

I believe this may be a misunderstanding of the word "free". It
doesn't mean gratis in this context. It simply means you are free to
recompile it yourself and not pay, if that's what you want to do.

> If the app had been listed as $10 to cover distrubution costs, I most
> likely would have purchased it.

Anyone is allowed to sell a GPL'ed program for as much as they want,
more than just distribution costs. In this case, I think the 10 USD
can reasonably cover Corbin's work on this, not just distribution
costs.

> Now, NO.

Why so vociferous? What is the great offence that you have suffered?
Do you feel deceived? Can this be remedied?

- Jordi G. H.



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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Michael Goffioul
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 4:58 PM, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, 2014-05-19 at 12:42 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
> On 05/19/14 12:24, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:

> The Octave app was listed as a free app until I installed it and was
> surprised by the requirement for payment.

I believe this may be a misunderstanding of the word "free". It
doesn't mean gratis in this context. It simply means you are free to
recompile it yourself and not pay, if that's what you want to do.

> If the app had been listed as $10 to cover distrubution costs, I most
> likely would have purchased it.

Anyone is allowed to sell a GPL'ed program for as much as they want,
more than just distribution costs. In this case, I think the 10 USD
can reasonably cover Corbin's work on this, not just distribution
costs.

> Now, NO.

Why so vociferous? What is the great offence that you have suffered?
Do you feel deceived? Can this be remedied?

I think the confusion/frustration comes from the fact that Google play store references the app as being "free", which in the context of the play store means you don't have to pay. Then I understand that the first thing it does upon running is asking you to pay a contribution, otherwise you can't run it (note: I never tried the app, so maybe I'm wrong).

I fully agree that Corbin is free to ask being paid for the distribution of the app, however I think it will generates confusion as it's listed in the free section of the play store. In that sense, being part of the free section is a bit deceiving.

Michael.


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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Mike Miller
In reply to this post by Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso-2
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 16:58:08 -0400, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
> On Mon, 2014-05-19 at 12:42 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
>> The Octave app was listed as a free app until I installed it and was
>> surprised by the requirement for payment.
>
> I believe this may be a misunderstanding of the word "free". It
> doesn't mean gratis in this context. It simply means you are free to
> recompile it yourself and not pay, if that's what you want to do.

I think Thomas is referring to the Google Play store entry [1] which
lists the app as "free" (gratis) to install. After installing, it
apparently functions fully for some trial period, after which time I
gather it requests a donation in order to continue functioning. I have
not tried it, but this is the way it seems to be described. Some may
view this as a "bait and switch", since the initial installation
appeared to be "free". I can't say if that's what's going on here, but
this may explain Thomas' reactions he has shared with us.

None of which has anything to do with violating the GPL.

  [1] https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.octave

HTH,

--
mike

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

Michael Goffioul
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 5:15 PM, Mike Miller <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 16:58:08 -0400, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
> On Mon, 2014-05-19 at 12:42 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
>> The Octave app was listed as a free app until I installed it and was
>> surprised by the requirement for payment.
>
> I believe this may be a misunderstanding of the word "free". It
> doesn't mean gratis in this context. It simply means you are free to
> recompile it yourself and not pay, if that's what you want to do.

I think Thomas is referring to the Google Play store entry [1] which
lists the app as "free" (gratis) to install. After installing, it
apparently functions fully for some trial period, after which time I
gather it requests a donation in order to continue functioning. I have
not tried it, but this is the way it seems to be described. Some may
view this as a "bait and switch", since the initial installation
appeared to be "free". I can't say if that's what's going on here, but
this may explain Thomas' reactions he has shared with us.

None of which has anything to do with violating the GPL.

  [1] https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.octave

Personally (and I insist this is only a personal feeling), I *hate* in-app purchases. I would happily purchase a full app upfront, but I've never used in-app purchase and I probably never will; usually I delete such "free" app where you can only progress by using in-app purchases. Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I think paying for the full app upfront is a better business model that pseudo-free apps (at least, more customer-friendly IMO).

Michael.


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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

nrjank
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 5:23 PM, Michael Goffioul <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 5:15 PM, Mike Miller <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 16:58:08 -0400, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
> On Mon, 2014-05-19 at 12:42 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
>> The Octave app was listed as a free app until I installed it and was
>> surprised by the requirement for payment.
>
> I believe this may be a misunderstanding of the word "free". It
> doesn't mean gratis in this context. It simply means you are free to
> recompile it yourself and not pay, if that's what you want to do.

I think Thomas is referring to the Google Play store entry [1] which
lists the app as "free" (gratis) to install. After installing, it
apparently functions fully for some trial period, after which time I
gather it requests a donation in order to continue functioning. I have
not tried it, but this is the way it seems to be described. Some may
view this as a "bait and switch", since the initial installation
appeared to be "free". I can't say if that's what's going on here, but
this may explain Thomas' reactions he has shared with us.

None of which has anything to do with violating the GPL.

  [1] https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.octave

Personally (and I insist this is only a personal feeling), I *hate* in-app purchases. I would happily purchase a full app upfront, but I've never used in-app purchase and I probably never will; usually I delete such "free" app where you can only progress by using in-app purchases. Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I think paying for the full app upfront is a better business model that pseudo-free apps (at least, more customer-friendly IMO).

Michael.


While I mostly agree with that sentiment, I think I'd be fine with this model if it was obviously listed as a Free Trial, or similar. Actually, it's possible that this disclosure is mandated by the Play store developer terms, specifically the last item on the list. possibly also the payment method one if the 'donation' is not processed through the play store billing service:

Paid and Free Apps

  • App purchases: Developers charging for apps and downloads from Google Play must do so by using Google Play's payment system.
  • In-app purchases:
    • Developers offering virtual goods or currencies within a game downloaded from Google Play must use Google Play's in-app billing service as the method of payment.
    • Developers offering additional content, services or functionality within another category of app downloaded from Google Play must use Google Play's in-app billing service as the method of payment, except:
      • where payment is primarily for physical goods or services (e.g., buying movie tickets, or buying a publication where the price also includes a hard copy subscription); or
      • where payment is for digital content or goods that may be consumed outside of the app itself (e.g., buying songs that can be played on other music players).
  • Developers must not mislead users about the apps they are selling nor about any in-app services, goods, content or functionality they are selling. If your product description on Google Play refers to in-app features to which a specific or additional charge applies, your description must clearly notify users that payment is required to access those features.

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

nrjank
On Tue, May 20, 2014 at 9:21 AM, Nicholas Jankowski <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 5:23 PM, Michael Goffioul <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 5:15 PM, Mike Miller <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, May 19, 2014 at 16:58:08 -0400, Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso wrote:
> On Mon, 2014-05-19 at 12:42 -0700, Thomas D. Dean wrote:
>> The Octave app was listed as a free app until I installed it and was
>> surprised by the requirement for payment.
>
> I believe this may be a misunderstanding of the word "free". It
> doesn't mean gratis in this context. It simply means you are free to
> recompile it yourself and not pay, if that's what you want to do.

I think Thomas is referring to the Google Play store entry [1] which
lists the app as "free" (gratis) to install. After installing, it
apparently functions fully for some trial period, after which time I
gather it requests a donation in order to continue functioning. I have
not tried it, but this is the way it seems to be described. Some may
view this as a "bait and switch", since the initial installation
appeared to be "free". I can't say if that's what's going on here, but
this may explain Thomas' reactions he has shared with us.

None of which has anything to do with violating the GPL.

  [1] https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.octave

Personally (and I insist this is only a personal feeling), I *hate* in-app purchases. I would happily purchase a full app upfront, but I've never used in-app purchase and I probably never will; usually I delete such "free" app where you can only progress by using in-app purchases. Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I think paying for the full app upfront is a better business model that pseudo-free apps (at least, more customer-friendly IMO).

Michael.


While I mostly agree with that sentiment, I think I'd be fine with this model if it was obviously listed as a Free Trial, or similar. Actually, it's possible that this disclosure is mandated by the Play store developer terms, specifically the last item on the list. possibly also the payment method one if the 'donation' is not processed through the play store billing service:

Paid and Free Apps

  • App purchases: Developers charging for apps and downloads from Google Play must do so by using Google Play's payment system.
  • In-app purchases:
    • Developers offering virtual goods or currencies within a game downloaded from Google Play must use Google Play's in-app billing service as the method of payment.
    • Developers offering additional content, services or functionality within another category of app downloaded from Google Play must use Google Play's in-app billing service as the method of payment, except:
      • where payment is primarily for physical goods or services (e.g., buying movie tickets, or buying a publication where the price also includes a hard copy subscription); or
      • where payment is for digital content or goods that may be consumed outside of the app itself (e.g., buying songs that can be played on other music players).
  • Developers must not mislead users about the apps they are selling nor about any in-app services, goods, content or functionality they are selling. If your product description on Google Play refers to in-app features to which a specific or additional charge applies, your description must clearly notify users that payment is required to access those features.
Checked out the app page. it's listed as a free app. no mention of a free trial. but it does specify:

"Offers in-app purchases"
"A fee is required for the use of this app, but you pay what you want/what you can."

So it seems to follow the letter of the law for the Play Store. Now, the question is: does the user experience match what it states. From the earlier conversation it seems that you can download it for free, try it for a little while, then after that you have to pay for use. I guess that could be spelled out more explicitly in the main app description. Or, if it doesn't already, maybe the nag screen could spell out the terms a bit more completely.

As everyone else has said, should be no direct GPL issue here. Anyone else is free to recompile and offer up their own version gratis. But he's also free to ask for compensation for his labor. Just because we're used to getting free software for free doesn't mean it's always that way.

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Re: Octave fior Android Requires Payment

John Frain
On 20 May 2014 14:33, Nicholas Jankowski <[hidden email]> wrote:
> On Tue, May 20, 2014 at 9:21 AM, Nicholas Jankowski <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>>

>
> Checked out the app page. it's listed as a free app. no mention of a free
> trial. but it does specify:
>
> "Offers in-app purchases"
> "A fee is required for the use of this app, but you pay what you want/what
> you can."
>
> So it seems to follow the letter of the law for the Play Store. Now, the
> question is: does the user experience match what it states. From the earlier
> conversation it seems that you can download it for free, try it for a little
> while, then after that you have to pay for use. I guess that could be
> spelled out more explicitly in the main app description. Or, if it doesn't
> already, maybe the nag screen could spell out the terms a bit more
> completely.
>
> As everyone else has said, should be no direct GPL issue here. Anyone else
> is free to recompile and offer up their own version gratis. But he's also
> free to ask for compensation for his labor. Just because we're used to
> getting free software for free doesn't mean it's always that way.
>
> _______________________________________________
> Help-octave mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/help-octave
>

I have been using Octave for Android under the previous and current
contribution schemes.  In effect I had made a contribution under the
earlier scheme and a second $1 contribution under the new scheme when
I changed my google id. I found the description of the payments on the
google play store very clear and was under no illusion as to what was
being done. If you read it the conditions are there.

In one respect I have benefited from the current debate. I decided to
look again at the material on the google play store and discovered the
GNURoot and GNURoot Wheezy free apps. These allow the installation of
a Debian Wheezy system.  I have not worked out the limitations of this
system but it is possible to install a working R system on Android.
These applications extend the functionality of an android machine.
Corbin is to be thanked for this work.


John

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