Legal Next Steps

This page describes known steps for the next stages of this project that have to do with legal matters.

Licensing Legal Matters

This project is open-source, however in the interests of developing speed, a Silicon Labs product was chosen as the primary MCU, and Silicon Labs software was chosen as the primary SDK. While Silicon Labs has made many examples open-source on their Git page, they do not allow the source code for the chip to be used in open-source projects.

  • A highly skilled embedded programmer could transition this entire code base from the Silicon Labs source code to a completely open-source code base.
  • A less skilled embedded programmer must remember to separate the open-source software components that we are using from the source code being used from Silicon Labs, including derivative works. For this reason, it is useful to separate out as many functions from Silicon Labs functions as possible. (I have not done this, as my goal was to get a barebones device up and running with basic functionality.) Currently, it is unclear to what extent "derivative software" applies to our code. Therefore attempts have been made to minimize the dependency between the code for this project and Silicon Labs code.
  • The best alternative is the program Mbed, which is Arm's open-source IoT tool suite. Mbed even comes with an add-on to Simplicity Studio that will allow you to use Mbed as the compiler. While it currently has packages for many different version of the Gecko family, it doesn't currently include Wireless Gecko. I am assuming that this is a matter of time. This could mean that functionality of the algorithms could be secured using SSv5, and then the open-source version could be switched to Mbed.

Bluetooth Legal Matters

Bluetooth is free to use, however there are a couple steps that have to happen if you use Bluetooth technology in your product, even if you don't advertise the fact that its using Bluetooth.

Bluetooth Qualification Process

Bluetooth technology is free to use by anyone, however in order to include Bluetooth protocol in your commercial project, it must first go through the Bluetooth Qualification Process. This is ran by the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) to ensure that Bluetooth has a high level of interoperability, and to keep that high-quality brand recognition strong [1].

Bluetooth Device Address

A Bluetooth MAC address can tell you a lot about a device, especially about who made the device. We may need to register for an OUI

See Also

Bibliography
1. Bluetooth SIG; Bluetooth Qualification Process Overview https://www.bluetooth.com/develop-with-bluetooth/qualification-listing/
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