I want to use a small dataset that a university professor posted on his web page (a list of English words). The data is part of a larger corpus of data that accompanies a textbook (written by said professor). On the web page, it say that "Public-domain sources for all programs and data of [software described in the book] are freely available." I want to use this data in a piece of open-source software that I am creating, which I intend to license under the MIT license. I plan to include a copy of the data with the software source code (which I will ultimately post to Github).
My questions are:
- Am I legally allowed to do what I have described above?
- If so, how should I cite the data? I was thinking of writing a few sentences about (1) the link to the data itself (2) the citation of the textbook (3) the quote from the professor's web page that says "Public-domain sources for all programs and data of [software described in the book] are freely available."
- What if I want to make my own modifications to the data before publishing it as part of my software (e.g. removing certain undesirable words from the list)?