Sorry for the lack of updates, I’ve been very busy for the past week or so, I’ll be getting back on track now, I have quite a queue of posts to get up and get back in the flow, argh backlog!
Oh well at least I won’t be suffering from writers block.
I was studying last week, a certification called OPST, I shall write more about it later, I had the exam Saturday morning for 4 hours, then went straight to a talk about Software Freedom in Universiti Malaya[/url] by Richard Stallman (AKA RMS) the godfather of Free Software (Founder of GNU, author of Emacs etc etc etc).
After that was dinner (having not eaten all day)..
Then Sunday was equally busy, now here I am, back in the peaceful haven of my Mon’t Kiara office.
Please not Free Software and Open Source Software ARE different things, although a peice of software can be both, being one DOESNT mean it has to be the other.
The Malaysian focus seems to be on gratis not libre, it’s not about Free as in Free Beer, it’s about Free as in Free speech.
It’s about FREEdom, freedom of choice, freedom to modify, freedom to distribute.
I guess I shall talk about this in depth in a later post, it’s a thought-provoking topic with interesting and deep connotations.
Stallman is a famous icon in the software world, a staunch defender of freedom and free software, heavily against software patents and restrictions on creativity. And yeah he looks like a hobo.
We arrived around 2pm, and a lady from MAMPU[/url] spoke about Malaysian Open Source Initiatives, she was a terrible speaker, stumbling, mumbling and repeating herself, plus what she was saying had already been published in the papers and online and was public knowledge.
She used the term Open Source though rather than Free Software, and she didn’t seem to know the difference, her focus was on gratis free, not libre free.
After that Stallman talked for 3-4 hours, the first part being ‘non-controversial’ the second half being more controversial. He covered a lot of subject, a large part being about software patents and the dangers, then a great explanation of free software and why it should be that way plus a bunch of other stories, anecdotes and explanations.
If you are old-skool like me, you know rms, esr, linus, djb, used to frequent usenet, perhaps used some BBS you will be familiar with most of the things he was saying, but still he is a VERY entertaining speaker, quick witted and extremely intelligent, he does have a tendency to be caustic though.
He didn’t use any slides or a presentation, he just spoke, very engaging indeed.
Towards the end he donned his famous St IGNUcius costume and preached about the church of Emacs.
Yes that is an old computer disk platter on his head.
Anyway I’m glad I went, it was enjoyable and I hope to see more luminaries like Richard Stallman visit Malaysia.
There were some other bloggers there, and a few other people I know including my ex-boss from UK who works over here now, also a Free Software fan, plus Dinesh and a couple of others. Apparently Sashi[/url] was there, and a the guy who led us the wrong way was Jon.
A few other people recognised me too, an Indian guy, a Chinese girl and some others, they didn’t have blogs, if you are here say hi 😉Related Links