Friday, September 17, 2010

Celebrate Software Freedom day

The day observed worldwide to spread the message of free and open source software, International Software Freedom Day, is celebrating on September 18, 2010. Software Freedom Day (SFD) is an annual worldwide celebration of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). “SFD”, is a day of celebration that there is some computer software that is not encumbered by copyrights and Patents which place limitations on the software. This Day aims to celebrate Free Software and the people behind it. It wants to spread the word about Free Software and help people find each other. The celebration is also intended to educate the worldwide public about the benefits of using high quality FOSS in education, in government, at home, and in business -- in short, everywhere!

SFD was initiated by a group of FOSS believers, Matt Oquist, Henrik Omma and Phil Harper with the idea of distributing the OpenCD to everyone. The idea of SFD is to unite and educate the world about the ideals of Software Freedom and the practical benefits of Free Software. Proprietary software, is computer software licensed under exclusive legal right, keeps the source code locked away from public scrutiny, which means there is no way to know exactly what the software actually does, and no way to trust it to safeguard your human rights. But the Open Source or Transparent technologies ensure transparency and you can trust the results and operation of your technology.

“Software Freedom International" (SFI) is a non-profit organization that acts as the official organizer of Software Freedom Day, and is the legal body that handles donations, sponsorship contracts, and accounting. The first Software Freedom Day was conducted on 28th August 2004. The name Software Freedom International was chosen to distinguish the organizational body from the event of Software Freedom Day itself. Each event is left to local teams around the world to organize. Pre-registered teams (2 months before the date or earlier) receive free schwag sent by SFI to help with the events themselves. Events themselves varies between conferences explaining the virtues of Free and Open Source Software, to workshops, demonstrations, games, planting tree ceremonies, discussions and InstallFests. Hundreds of teams around the world manage the local celebration and help to send out a global message. So don’t miss a chance to attend an SFD event nearby!

It’s quite unfair not mentioning about Richard Matthew Stallman, the President and founder of Free Software Foundation. Richard Matthew Stallman (born March 16, 1953), often abbreviated "RMS", is an American software freedom activist and computer programmer. In September 1983, he launched the GNU Project to create a free Unix-like operating system, and has been the project's lead architect and organizer. With the launch of the GNU Project, he initiated the free software movement; in October 1985 he founded the Free Software Foundation. Since the mid-1990s Stallman has spent most of his time advocating for free software, as well as campaigning against both software patents and what he sees as excessive extension of copyright laws.

In celebration of Software Freedom Day 2010, IPSR shares some of the favorite quotes about Free and Open Source Software from no less than the two pillars of FOSS, Linus Torvalds and Richard M. Stallman. Enjoy and be inspired!

To be able to choose between proprietary software packages is to be able to choose your master. Freedom means not having a master. And in the area of computing, freedom means not using proprietary software.

-Richard M. Stallman

Software patents are a huge potential threat to the ability of people to work together on open source. Making it easier for companies and communities that have patents to make those patents available in a common pool for people to use is one way to try to help developers deal with the threat.

-Linus Torvalds

For further reading go with the links below:
Software Freedom International

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