Free Software – Are You In?

“We have managed to increase our lifespan in a world that is not fit to live in” (from “The Man from Earth”).

This is rather an absurd beginning to an article, but imagine if I were to be sued for quoting from a movie – how completely insane! It would be like being punished for sharing my class notes with a friend (or even worse).

But the state of the software world right now is much like this. Closed source software have managed to grab a popularity for which no reason seems to exist. Such software (non-free) restricts the freedom of the user, and is extremely annoying at times.

So I take this opportunity to encourage all my readers to adopt Free Software instead of non-free ones. For only free software can build a free computing society.

I shall be making a presentation on this topic in my college tomorrow, under the auspices of the Sun Academic Initiative. The presentation itself shall be available here tomorrow.

Until then, stay free.

PS: Coming up next – how to load remote javascripts at “runtime” from the server!

How to contribute to the open source community

Open source is so much like a teddy bear. You love it and it loves you so right back. It doesn’t even ask for commitment (wow!), but if you are sensitive enough, you would do a lot for it. I won’t get into what you would do for your teddy bear,

I guess there are basically three things you can do for open source projects:

  • Contribute code to it: This really means coding, bug fixing and the like.
  • Maintain: This means stuff like maintain its public pages, manage its mailing lists and/or its website. But nowadays most of these things are done by websites like sourceforge
  • Donate: Yeah. If you like some open source software but can’t contribute to it the techie way, you can always donate. With big projects like Ubuntu, Firefox etc this would mean buying “branded” products like a coffee mug or a tee shirt. But small projects don’t really know what to do with their money.

And here‘s a great article about this topic I found.