Free digital Europe needs good lobbyists

The questions Roberto poses to lobbyist Florian Mueller gave me to think about the current file format war and the role of medium/large European companies. It impresses me how many of them still have no idea of what mess the specification of OOXML are, how bad it will be for them on the market to have it approved by ISO.

I’m glad that it’s Roberto saying the following:

I invite medium to large IT European
companies to think about it, and invest money to lobby. Now.

I hope they listen.

End of June with fireworks

What a month this was.  ISO vote on fast-tracking approval of OOXML is approaching and in this room all I can hear is the tipical klanging noise of double-hand swords. I can barely write.  Next Friday GPLv3 final version is being published: phones are ringing and press officers are typing.

If this was not exciting enough, tomorrow FSFE starts its annual meeting, this year in Bruxelles.  Tomorrow night there is a Fellowship party (get the details here, it will be in a bar/pub in the city centre).  On Friday morning I will present to FSFE board the results of the Fellowship project. Next days will be very intense, I can’t wait.

A presentation on Free Software Business and ethics

I’ve put online the presentation I gave few days ago at the Executive MBA in ICT in Milano.  It’s my first experiment with beyond bullets style.  I liked preparing it and thanks to the CC search in Flickr it didn’t take much time. I’ve always thought that an image is better than 1000 words, so I let the images speak and impress the audience while I added my words on top. 

The structure of the presentation, designed for a two hours lesson (I stayed in time, including some questions and a couple excursions for deeper explanations asked by students), follows a scheme in three acts:

  1. setup the story: introducing the digital society we live in, show that software is everywhere, explain that who writes software has power that needs to be balanced:
  2. develop the act: show examples of life in digital society, show how digital domain work, why it is different, what laws exist to balance powers, introduce ethics and business responsibility in the digital domain
  3. Frame the resolution: present the vision of FSFs with programmer’s ethics (four freedoms) and work to improve the situation, with a final call for action to claim balance of powers in digital society.

Most of the slides are images, but there are few sentences in Italian. Let me know what you think, if find it inspiring at all.

I owe a lot to Roberto Galoppini, for the image of Free Software Business as a juggling act: (aren’t they all, btw?), to Lawrence Lessig (for the ebook DRM screenshots) and Renzo Davoli (for the pipe).

links for 2007-06-19

So, Microsoft stuff works better?

This morning I wanted to blog about my lesson at the MIP Politecnico Business School, but I stumbled upon this story that made me hate my Nokia 6680.  I tried syncing my Symbian based phone with my Ubuntu so many times but all I got was frustration.  This guy, OTOH, reports an [almost] flawless experience syncing Evolution with his WinCE based phone.  I’m so jealous. Is this the luck of the newbie or is it that Nokia has screwed things up royally?

I’ve been aware of the existence of the Linux operating system for a
long time, but I’d always assumed that it would be too complicated for
me to learn and was a bit too geeky. Recently, however, I began hearing
about a version of Linux called Ubuntu that was supposed to be pretty easy to use. Flash forward a few weeks and not only have I found that it is relatively easy to use, but it’s already replaced Windows Vista as my main operating system of choice for day to day use!

Read more: A New Adventure! Windows Mobile and Ubuntu Linux