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09.18.20

Richard Stallman Has Not Changed His Tune at All

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GPL, Videos at 2:37 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

NumbersFull video: Hackers – Wizards of the Electronic Age

Summary: Richard Stallman’s (RMS) principled views regarding software go back to the days of zeroes and ones; his position 35 years ago was almost indistinguishable from today’s position

FISHED or extracted from very old archives (thanks, figosdev) are a couple of little segments — among several more — of an early RMS back when GNU was just getting started. The GNU Project is nowadays ubiquitous (even if so many people refer to GNU programs as "Linux") and copyleft is widely adopted in spite of corporate FUD from the likes of Google and Microsoft.

To give just a little outline, here’s RMS about 8 minutes in. He starts his day at 5 with dinner, then works until the morning, in effect working all night long while living at the lab (MIT).

On why Free software is important to him:

He shows up a number of times throughout this programme, typically insisting that his purpose as a hacker is to make all programs free. He has barely changed his vision and his goal since; he’s very, very consistent. Being stubborn when you’re right about something isn’t a weakness but a virtue. Even his sceptics came around to embrace his philosophy.

“He has barely changed his vision and his goal since; he’s very, very consistent.”figosdev, who found this old video, was responding to Somebody Needs to Talk About Free Software Politics (which he called a “nice article”) ans said that “one thing you notice from the hackers video is that we are talking about the same things now that they were talking about in 1985. Woz was saying that source should be free. Of course he was in the same room as RMS. Another way saying that source often was free — sitting on a tape in the same desk as the computer, because sometimes you needed the programs on that tape in order to run your own programs.”

Keith Packard: Richard Stallman Was Right (About the GPL)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GPL, Videos at 2:09 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Full talk: “A Political History of X” – Keith Packard (LCA 2020)

Summary: A 2020 video (before lock-downs) from the brain behind X11 and various lesser-known projects

Further to Somebody Needs to Talk About Free Software Politics,” here’s a portion from this year’s talk given by the venerable Keith Packard. “A Political History of X” was the talk’s title and a portion is dedicated to Free software.

“Packard has a number of good things to say about the GPL, which he’s choosing for his latest projects (GPLv3 or later).”The interesting part, which figosdev gave us a tip about, regards the choice of licence and software freedom. After speaking about X11 and the challenging person (“challenging individual to get along with”) who Richard Stallman was, Packard said about Stallmsn that “he really was right, we have to remember that…” (regarding the GPL).

Packard has a number of good things to say about the GPL, which he’s choosing for his latest projects (GPLv3 or later).

09.16.20

How Unix Works (Explanation by Its Founding Fathers)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, UNIX, Videos at 7:56 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Source: Bell Laboratories archives (3:01 to 18:14)

Summary: An early look at the system which decades later took over the entire world (as a prototype or as a concept and de facto standard at least); it’s partly relevant to the systemd debate

THE important principles of modularity (for reliability through simplicity) are explained above. This video is as old as yours truly. What many people (wrongly) call “LINUX” did not start in 1991. There was a lot of prior work. We need to recognise the true origins.

As we’re digging into the history of computing and various BSDs these days (turns out Richard Stallman played a role in BSD being freed), we thought the above was worth keeping (and hosting locally in free/open formats). Throughout the summer we studied a great deal of IBM’s history, including the mainframes, knowing that IBM now completely controls Red Hat and ‘crown jewels’ such as systemd. Will we be keeping the same simplicity UNIX/POSIX was made famous for? Or will increasingly complex systems and giant blobs (like containers and Snap/Flatpak) become the new ‘normal’?

“This week in “the news” they tell us even Microsoft is accepting Linux as the ‘root authority’, seeing that its own stack is failing quite badly.”The above video explains chaining of commands or piping input/output — one of the greatest strengths of this architecture (to this day). Cobbling together a bunch of simple programs is important and opponents/critics of systemd often point this out. Former Debian Project Leader Bruce Perens spoke about that.

We don’t intend to walk into this whole systemd debate (or “war”); the key point is, those systems have not changed much since Stallman was an adolescent — way, way before he even started the GNU Project. This sort of architecture has become an industry standard, whether one looks at Android or iOS on mobile, ChomeOS or macOS on laptops, and GNU/Linux or BSD on servers. This week in “the news” they tell us even Microsoft is accepting Linux as the ‘root authority’, seeing that its own stack is failing quite badly. The future is UNIX/POSIX/BSD/GNU/Linux; there’s likely very little room left for anything else. Windows lost. NT lost. Even Microsoft knows that. But Microsoft insists on using proprietary Hyper-V, which was a GPL violation. Microsoft has plans and they’re not beneficial to us. Hyper-V is actually an attack on Free software. It always was. Microsoft paid Novell to participate in this attack and Novell’s Greg K-H was rewarded by the Linux Foundation with powerful seats, both as Torvalds’ deputy and key participant in the Technical Advisory Board along with Microsoft.

09.12.20

Chris Titus on Judging Engineers as If They Are Marketing/PR People (or Why We Are Appreciating Brilliance on Technical Merit/Grounds)

Posted in GNU/Linux, Kernel, Marketing, Videos at 4:53 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: A response to Torvalds- and Stallman-shaming videos from one year ago, this one by Chris Titus (Mr. Titus is a person who is quite new to GNU/Linux and cites Techrights sometimes)

One Year Ago: Explanation of What Richard Stallman Actually Said (and Separating Opinions From His Professional Work)

Posted in Deception, GNU/Linux, Videos at 2:24 am by Guest Editorial Team

Summary: Another year-old video about what led to the forced ‘resignation’ (this video says “retirement”) of Richard Stallman

09.11.20

Daniel Pocock’s DebConf Talk: Debian at the Core of Modern Communications Networks

Posted in Debian, Videos at 10:59 pm by Guest Editorial Team

Summary: The DebConf13 talk of Daniel Pocock, whose expulsion from Debian has been covered here lately

09.10.20

Video: Richard Stallman at TEDxGeneva

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Videos at 9:59 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Free software, free society: Richard Stallman at TEDxGeneva 2014

Summary: An old video where the founder (and still chief) of GNU explains what software freedom is about

Licence: Creative Commons Attribution licence (reuse allowed)

09.09.20

One Year Ago: ‘Nerd on the Street’ on Richard Stallman Getting ‘Canceled’

Posted in FSF, GNU/Linux, Videos at 9:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: After an MIT-Epstein scandal implicating Bill Gates Richard Stallman came under many attacks, causing him to forcibly ‘resign’; the above video remarks on what happened

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