On Libervis.com we explore the good uses of technology, those that put technology in the service of individual liberty, personal empowerment, betterment of society as a whole, and building a better future. We provide key resources that can help you use technology to advance these purposes, and we discuss the implications that technological trends, meshing with social trends, have for these values.
When generally talking about our community and software it builds and promotes, we use various differing terms and acronyms; "Free Software", "Open Source", "Linux", "GNU/Linux", "FOSS", "FLOSS" etc. To outsiders this may seem counterproductive because it confuses people, but in such an open and diverse community ecosystem this shouldn't come as a surprise. Various people hold various perspectives and hence form various views on issues that concern them. Some sort of a polarization is almost inevitable.
The contest resulted in some superior and innovative work. "Some of the templates show just how advanced and flexible Openoffice.org's OpenDocument format is as both a Word and Spreadsheet ODF processor. The winning templates and many others breaks a myth that Openoffice.org cannot do advanced editing functions like Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel. It is obvious that Openoffice.org has come of age and is more than just a free alternative to MS Office but is an extremely worthy competitor" said Russell Ossendryver, Managing Director of Worldlabel.com.
The Free Software Foundation acts as the benevolent force guiding the computer industry. It protects the users of software from the baddies, the list of which very often includes the names Microsoft, Apple, and TiVo.
But what happens when the benevolent force transforms into something of a hypocrit?
When Novell signed the now-famous agreement with Microsoft, I must admit that I was quite puzzled. For a company making most of its business by selling free and open source software, this seemed unreal; maybe there was a good reason for that, after all. But when I read the part on the patents and the indemnification of customers, I really found out that it was quite odd and contradicting anything I ever read about the GPL.
I have however refrained from giving in the Novell-bashing fashion for several reasons.
The Free Software community is without a doubt today an important part of the overall IT business ecosystem. This community counts everyone from individuals to large corporations and is gathered around the common good that is Free Software, licensed under Free Software licenses such as BSD and GPL which also shields this common pool from outside exploitation. Corporations should already be realizing that they have to count with this community and its stance towards them. It is always good to cooperate with this community.