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intric8
Seattle, WA, USA

AmigaOS - who owns the legal rights?

by intric8 Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:23 am

There is an excellent question and discussion over on Reddit about who actually owns the AmigaOS rights. It is interesting right off the bat how it became severed from Commodore in the first place.

One summary easily stands out, delivered by a user who goes by the moniker 'jugalator':
I think Hyperion is best suited for new development. They did a mountain of effort for AmigaOS 4. They have (had??) ambitious goals for AmigaOS 4.2. Their dev team is admirably well versed in the Amiga operating system despite its age and small niche today. If they wanted to make more conservative updates, they could probably also branch Kickstart 3.1 into a 3.1.x or 3.2.

Cloanto seems more about keeping dat nostalgia... and rights to the classic Kickstart etc... alive. They want to bundle all that classic stuff for an as slick experience as possible. As far as I understand, this puts them in conflict with Hyperion who also claims rights to at least Kickstart 3.1 as their development base (otherwise AmigaOS 4 wouldn't have come to life). I have no idea how this could have happened to begin with. Where did Hyperion get their source code? Where did Cloanto get their source code? I don't understand how this conflict even happened. They sit on the same intellectual property??

Amiga, Inc seems to be about making money and probably not caring all too much about the Amiga to be honest, ironically enough. They appear to be the most interested in making best use of the trademark and use Hyperion developed stuff for new ready made systems. They aren't very good at this. I doubt they understand where the market is heading or the best strategy forward, if they even care much.

I wish Amiga Inc would be out of the picture, and Cloanto + Hyperion would merge. I think that would be the best solution here. Both of these always seemed to have more of a genuine care for this computer.

Legally I read Amiga Inc has lost their US trademark for the Amiga brand a few years ago, but claimed them for EU until 2021... So maybe it was just matter of moving their web site to a European server, lol. :p As for Cloanto, Hyperion, I have no idea. Surely both somehow have papers on the IP? Again, I am missing a link to how both came to claim the IP in the first place.

While they are trying to kill each other off, you see stuff like Apollo taking more and more place. They have sort of become the builders of the next gen Amiga to me. Looks like they have the most sane, pragmatic hardware way forward to bring the best performance/excitement per dollar.


I'm putting that here as I thought it was one of the better overviews of the situation as it exists today.

My own personal wish is they'd both simply release the IP - especially Cloanto. Put it into the community's hands and let it become open source. Allow us to freely use and distribute the original code - code Cloanto never made themselves. Then, over time, the community might enhance older versions here and there. Surely the money Cloanto earns must be tiny to say the least. But the potential benefits of releasing the code to us crazy folk? Huge.
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McTrinsic

Re: AmigaOS - who owns the legal rights?

by McTrinsic Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:53 pm

You are aware of Hyperion developing an 3.1.4, aren't you?

While there might be other legal aspects to it, Hyperion are offering OS4 and are working on a 3.1.4.

So they actively offer a living product line which should come pretty close to marketing of all relevant products.

And as such there won't be an opportunity for open source.
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Dynamic_Computing

Re: AmigaOS - who owns the legal rights?

by Dynamic_Computing Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:10 pm

I thought Amiga, Inc was totally dead. I recall back about 8 years ago that came out with some crappy apps for Blackberry - and that was when IOS and Android was on the rise and Blackberry was sinking like a stone. I used to visit their site now and again, and I could never make heads or tails out of what they were trying to market (if anything) - They really needed to sell the rights to someone who cared about 10 years ago.
I think Haage should keep all the rights for 4.1 and onward, but let Cloanto keep up with the 3.9 and previous versions.
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McTrinsic

Re: AmigaOS - who owns the legal rights?

by McTrinsic Sun Sep 09, 2018 5:52 am

Haage is out of any Amiga Business for years now.
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Zippy Zapp
CA, USA

Re: AmigaOS - who owns the legal rights?

by Zippy Zapp Mon Sep 10, 2018 11:51 am

Yeah it is a bit different based on who you happen to ask.

As to AmigaOS 3.1.4, information is here.

IIRC they also touch on the subject of licensing and what company can do what.

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