[erlang-questions] Re: reverse engineering beam files / obfuscation ?

Richard O'Keefe ok@REDACTED
Tue Feb 16 03:56:16 CET 2010

On Feb 16, 2010, at 12:20 AM, Alpar Juttner wrote:

> Sorry, but I can't understand the story.

We got the paper because as the then experts on the WAM,
we were sent a copy for review.
When we communicated our suspicions, the big company in
question did not protest, did not challenge our suspicions,
but backed down in a hurry.  What would you think?

It was not a matter of *one* idea, but of about six.
They might well have reinvented one of them, but all six?

Nor was this the first time that someone had stolen
intellectual property from people associated with Quintus.
Large chunks of C Prolog were stolen, contrary to the
licence, by a European company and incorporated in their
product.  I was the (then) independent assessor who
demonstrated the fact of the theft beyond reasonable doubt.

> But could you _prove_ somehow that they stole the idea from Quintus or
> did you just suspect it? If it was just a suspicion, you'd better  
> not be
> so proud of this story.

We could have proved it to the ordinary standard of proof for
a civil case, but given the very nasty legal experience Edinburgh
had with the first lot of thieves, and the fact that the thieves
this time had much bigger pockets than us, we didn't choose to
go that route.

We simply said, "all of these ideas are in our product, none of them
has appeared in print before, you had a copy of our product, show
reason to believe that you invented them independently."  And they
did not even try.  What would *you* think?

In any case, who said I or anyone else was PROUD of the story?
It happened?  I'm ASHAMED that we were so scared of the legal
system that we didn't take stronger action.

> In addition, review of a paper is normally done by an independent
> reviewer, who must handle the paper confidentially. How did you get a
> copy of the paper under review?

Why are you so keen to blame the victims?

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