Circuit Maker software, free :-)

A. Maitland Bottoms aa4hs at
Mon Feb 25 23:07:34 CST 2008

Frank Gentges writes:
 > Nonetheless, this looks to be a fine program given the purchase price of 
 > *free*.

Not really.

It's hard to figure out who to complain to if it doesn't work right.
It seems the original developers will not help you.
Perhaps the warez binary is a trojan horse - what malice might lurk there?
You can't fix the program because you don't have the source.
You don't have many rights at all...
The file cm2000pro/Circuit Maker 2000 Manual.pdf says, in part:
Software, documentation and related materials:
Copyright (C) 1988-2000 Protel International Limited.

All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized duplication of the software, manual or related materials by
any means, mechanical or electronic, including translation into another language, except for brief
excerpts in published reviews, is prohibited without the express written permission of Protel
International Limited.

Unauthorized duplication of this work may also be prohibited by local statute. Violators may be
subject to both criminal and civil penalties, including fines and/or imprisonment.
Pretty depressing.

But there are other options!
Developers and communities to contact clearly stated on web sites.
People who give away source code.
A license that gives you the right to redistribute and modify.

The gEDA stuff is getting better:
PCB, gnucap, ngspice...

Quite Universal Circuit Simulator:



And many more....

Some people have accomplished non-trivial projects using these tools:
The USRP -

When you build something, consider using the Open Hardware License:
so that
 - You may modify the documentation and make products based upon it.
 - You may use products for any legal purpose without limitation.


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