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Comment RedHat 2.0 in the beige box (Score 1) 136

A floppy, a CD, and a couple manuals. 0.9 kernel and fvwm as the X window manager. Found it for, I think, $25 at a Software Etc in the Red Cliffs Mall in St George UT. Since OS2 was a couple hundred and I was looking for an alternative to Windows 3.11 I picked it up.

I remember a Comdex in the late 90's when Linux was going corporate and every company seemed to be basing their distros off of Red Hat and SuSe and I asked an engineer why they didn't use Debian. The reply was "The problems with Debian are Deb and Ian".

Comment Privacy is a prerequsite for liberty (Score 1) 316

Hacking free software continues to prove fruitful. In fact, some people use it and rely on it for their freedoms (such as Edward Snowden). But proprietary software is long known to be untrustworthy by default, no matter who the proprietor is or what excuse they (or their water carriers) have for denying users software freedom. So there's no gain to be had in a capitulation view. Privacy and other freedoms are worth fighting for and there's plenty of good to be had in the fight. Some of those fights take the form of saying "no" to a convenience or trend on the grounds that one values one's privacy more.

Comment "User privacy" coming from a proprietor? How naive (Score 1) 70

Based on what evidence do you conclude that "Apple is pushing for user privacy"? Even if the software ran on one's tracker, the transcript or audio of any call could easily be uploaded wherever a proprietary software developer and distributor wants without the user's awareness or informed consent. Voice transcription is an important part of better indexing people's calls, which better serves multiple interests including targetted retrieval of the kind Snowden has told us organizations have been doing for some time now.

Comment The future of reading before posting? (Score 1) 359

You're unlikely to get the answer you seek because you've framed your question in terms of a movement Stallman is (rightly) opposed to, and in ways that he's already explained many times (even the /. summary points to one of the essays on this) -- why Stallman objects to the open source movement (older essay, newer essay also pointed to in the /. summary). He recommends against using Facebook (and has started every talk in the past year or so with an explanation of why posting pictures of people in Facebook/Instagram is a bad idea). I hope he will point out to you that you don't need these things to avoid "losing connection with the rest of the world" and you should value things the open source movement was designed to never talk about, and privacy these services are designed to deny every user of the web. One can hardly "benefit the users" while advocating against copyleft (as the open source movement does), never talking about software freedom (as the open source movement was designed to do), and maintaining a monstrous search engine (as is at the heart of Facebook). You could have done the slightest bit of research and found any of these things I pointed to.

Comment Re:The Anti-Stallman Brigade rears its head again (Score 1) 75

Slashdot seems to me to be a proponent of the open source movement, the software development methodology that Bradley Kuhn rightly called "greenwashing" (another copy) the free software movement by talking about much the same software and licenses but without the freedom talk in order to placate business interests seeking to proprietarize software. Consider the case in this thread—defending copyleft—this clearly shows the difference between the two movements. The older free software movement wants to preserve software freedom while the younger open source movement was built to not discuss software freedom at all. Kuhn's personal blog post on this topic describes the situation very well and with no punches pulled.

When you come across someone who talks and works to defend software freedom, such as Richard Stallman, in a forum whose participants are (be they a proprietor's shill or genuinely describing their own view) devoted to supporting the kind of power over the user that strongly copylefted licenses, such as the GNU GPLs, were built to withstand you're going to find people using whatever namecalling and misrepresentative tactics they can come up with to try and malign Stallman (as if that would somehow reflect badly on software freedom). The complaints get weaker over time (remember when people used to complain that the GPL wasn't defensible in court?) so the objectors have to find other avenues to try and distract people into not thinking in terms of software freedom. It wouldn't matter if software freedom were proposed and initially championed by someone wholly objectionable; that wouldn't make software freedom a bad thing. Talking about Stallman instead of talking about software freedom is doing that distractionary work because the facts on the ground fail to back the case that we're better off without software freedom.

"More software projects have gone awry for lack of calendar time than for all other causes combined." -- Fred Brooks, Jr., _The Mythical Man Month_

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