Why Richard Stallman doesn’t matter

Too many people have joined the chorus of cacophonous conversations online about booting Richard Stallman from the free software movement. They claim that his social behavior has prevented more people from joining. There are conspiracy theories claiming a hit job by an evil corp. The point that everybody misses is that Stallman’s views on software…

Vote to get Mediagoblin on Bitnami

I’m a fan of GNU Mediagoblin, the media publishing platform that anyone can run. You can think of it as a decentralized alternative to Flickr, YouTube, SoundCloud, etc. It would be great to have it packaged for Bitnami so more people can run it easily. Vote for Mediagoblin! https://bitnami.com/product/mediagoblin/widget

FSF highlights two projects that can replace Skype

GNU Free Call wants to help people easily connect with each other without relying on any one centralized network. To do that, they’re creating a peer-to-peer calling network, along with client software for traditional desktop computers and mobile devices. The project recently released stable call server software, GNU SIP Witch 1.0, and now the team…

Technology is changing politics

That’s the theme of the Personal Democracy Forum that started today in New York. Too often, the discussion of technology and politics employs a kind of lazy shorthand. We say things like “The Internet is revolutionizing politics,” or “the Internet is helping dictators,” as if a set of network protocols and bits and wires could…

Silly search engine puts a free pool in FSF office

Just spotted via John Sullivan: if you happen to search for a ‘free open pool boston, MA’ Google will tell you that the Free Software Foundation has one. It makes sense: next to free beer you need a free pool. You won’t find free beer in FSF offices though. BTW, Bing Maps doesn’t find any…

Oracle ‘donates’ OpenOffice.org to Apache foundation

Oracle has done what Sun should have done a long time ago: put OO.org code into the hand of an independent foundation. The good news is that now a wider participation from corporations and individuals is possible. Hell, even Microsoft can now participate into OO.org development. I hope that soon the fork can be reconciled,…

Why it’s fair to put GNU in GNU/Linux

I keep meeting people that get this wrong and start very boring discussions about the name of operating systems based on Linux kernel. Latest storm started with Pedro Côrte-Real ‘How much GNU is there in GNU/Linux’ and the subsequent comments on LWN.net. GNU is the foundation of a very powerful idea: that one day  computers…

Google extends copyright with YouTube Store

Copyright is a set of exclusive rights granted to the author or creator of an original work, including the right to copy, distribute and adapt the work (Wikipedia). Google is adding a new right: the right to exclude you from configuring your device the way you want. Google is excluding jailbroken (rooted) Android phones from…

MediaGoblin project brings GNU into the cloud

GNU MediaGoblin is a new software project that will enable people to publish, share and distribute their photos, video and other media in the cloud. Think of it as mix of social sites like Flickr, YouTube, DeviantArt or Facebook but better. Being a GNU project, it respects users freedom will be licensed under the GNU…

Looking for freedom respecting alternatives to Skype

Now that Microsoft has bought Skype many people I know are wondering what will happen to Skype’s GNU/Linux client. Will Microsoft keep it or will they drop support for it? I don’t know, nobody can predict what Microsoft will do at the moment. From a conversation I started on identi.ca I learned a few things…