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Subject: Re: The superior Rybka chess knowledge

Author: Walter Faxon

Date: 06:26:17 01/22/06

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On January 22, 2006 at 00:18:52, Robert Hyatt wrote:

>On January 20, 2006 at 17:23:00, Uri Blass wrote:
>
>>
>>It is illegal to do it.
>>I doubt if all of them do not respect the law.
>>
>
>
>You and others keep saying this.  But it is _not_ true.   Please cite any U.S.
>or international law that specifically and explicitly makes this a criminal act.
> "reverse-engineering" has been adjudicated as perfectly legal in both US and
>international courts.  One can't "copy" the code due to copyright.  But one can
>certainly read, study, and learn from it...


No expert on the law but...

(1) I don't know about the case of Rybka, but usually the terms of sale prohibit
reverse-engineering.  So doing so is a tort if not a crime.

(2) If you make a human-readable copy, that is a "derivative work" which is a
violation of copyright.  Anything you thus "learn from it" and then use (or post
about) is also derivative.

(3) In the U.S. the DMCA prohibits use of methods to get unauthorized access to
any copyrighted work.  Felony.  A disassembler used to help has been held by a
court to be a "burglary tool".

(4) Before the DMCA the only exceptions that U.S. courts have allowed regard the
need for other programs to interface the subject program.  Rybka uses the
standard UCI protocol and has no other interface requirements.

Perhaps you ought to talk to your University's lawyer before posting on this
subject again.

-W



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