OSI Approves Version 2 of CERN’s Open Hardware License

The Open Source Initiative (OSI) has approved version 2 of CERN's Open Hardware License (OHL), meaning it “conforms to its Open Source Definition and respects the ideals and ethos of the movement,” according to a report from The Register.

The OHL, which was released by CERN last year, “uses simpler terminology, introduces three variants of the license, and broadens its range to include designs that go from artistic to mechanical to electronic.... It can even be used to license software,” CERN says.

The three license variants, as listed below, are Strongly Reciprocal, Weakly Reciprocal, and Permissive.

These variants aim to address constraints resulting from the different collaboration models used in open hardware projects, says CERN. “The first two variants mean that if any product is made using an open hardware design, the design of that product, including any improvements or modifications, should be made available under the same license as that of the original product. Permissive licenses do not impose this condition.”