Posts Tagged ‘Free Software’

Exploring the power of technology at Libervis.com

Monday, July 21st, 2008

This is the basic tenet behind modern Libervis.com, a site which is dedicated to gathering people to explore technology and the powers that it gives us, particularly with regards to ways in which this power can be used in favor or to detriment of individual freedoms.

The official announcement of the new and most dramatic revision of the site has been made, designed to encourage people to come in and explore. Please see the and also help spread the word about the site by digging the story.

Thank you!

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Morals, Force and Freedomware

Sunday, June 22nd, 2008

In my last post about Freedomware I tried to define it without relying on the copyright law since I no longer believe in it. My conclusion was that Freedomware, for me, is essentially more about a particular kind of culture and mentality than it is about a given license and that the only equivalent to such a license that can exist in a free market is a contract with particular terms and conditions for use and distribution.

I further argued, especially in my discussion with Thomas in comments, that ultimately contracts which require of users not to copy the contracted software would fail in the market and be considered undesirable by both the users and developers. However I focused a little too much on how could some arbiters rule in favor of the one breaking the contract by copying because his breakage didn’t deprive the original developer of the copy. The thing is, I might be quite wrong about this as if you agree to a contract and yet break it, no matter how stupid the conditions were you’re responsible for signing up to them and should live up to them or terminate the contract by ceasing to use the product or service offered through it, even if that meant deleting a copy of the software you bought and making no backups.

However, even if we assume that all proprietary software contracts broken by the user (by something like an act of copying not authorized by the contract) are judged by the arbiter in favor of the developer and against the user, it doesn’t exactly change the likelihood of proprietary software contracts becoming undesirable. In fact, the more efficient developers are in suing the contractors that broke their contracts the more undesirable and less tolerant may customers be to accepting such contracts in the first place.

So basically, no matter how you turn this around, it seems to me that without the support of a coercive monopoly and its heinous regulation of the market, proprietary software would probably end up being rather unpopular compared to software offered under less restrictive contracts, most of which possibly being classifiable as Free Software (as in freedom), with the source code, right to copy, modify etc.

That said, I would now like to turn to the issue of morality as it relates to Free Software. Being a voluntaryist, the highest principle I uphold is the principle of non-initiation of force and the more I focus on that conditional the more tolerant I seem to become towards other people doing what I once perhaps considered immoral or unethical. Some would call this to be moral erosion, but they have to bear in mind that being a voluntaryist does not mean accepting non-initiation of force as your ONLY moral principle. It just means that whatever other moral principles you have, you shouldn’t give yourself the right to force it on other people.

You can write, campaign, try to influence people any way you can think of to accept your own moral principles as long as you don’t force them to, as long as it ultimately still remains their own free choice.

That said, an interesting question that pops up in my mind is; what else, aside from non-initiation of force, conditions the acceptance of a particular principle as a moral one? Let’s say someone is doing something you find disgusting, but he or she is not initiating force or fraud by doing it. You could still say that what he or she is doing is wrong thereby making a moral statement and implying that it is part of your own moral principles not to do that and not to condone other people doing that.

What is it that makes you consider this wrong though? Just the fact that you are disgusted by it? Often times this probably is the case. Merely the fact that something seems heinous and ugly to you makes you feel like it’s wrong. Sometimes, however, it may be that you believe proliferation of such acts will have adverse consequences to you and your society, that they will establish a path towards something much worse and so on.

But then we just get back to the old situation. If nobody is forcing you to participate what do you care? The “society” you are talking about isn’t “you”, an individual and you can’t control other people, just yourself. So all it comes back to is your mere disgust. You think an act that you find disgusting will lead to more people acting in a way you don’t like and then more etc. and wish to prevent this somehow, but the only reason you are doing so is because you are disgusted, because you don’t like what you see, not because there is some universal “wrong” in it. As I stated earlier, I don’t believe there is such a thing as morally wrong or right in the universe at large. These are the judgments human individuals assign to things and acts themselves.

What’s especially interesting about this, then, is that if the only thing that makes something wrong, aside of initiatory force is the fact you don’t like it yet your likes and dislikes tend to change over time, all other morals aside from the moral of non-initiation of force are totally relative and subjective and are NOT worth forcing people for. In other words, the moral of non-initiation of force and fraud completely overrides all others. When you realize this you might, like myself, find yourself in a situation in which you actually become more tolerant towards some things you found to be “immoral” before because, perhaps, the fact you don’t like it just doesn’t seem like a strong enough reason to sweat over, nor strong enough reason to waste your breath over.

This is how the “be and let be” mentality starts to settle in, the mentality of true tolerance.

Let’s go back to Freedomware and how this ties in to that. Richard Stallman believes and actively propagates the idea that developers who provide their software under the terms which restrict people from unlimited use, copying and modifying of it are doing something morally wrong. The first question I would ask to verify that claim is whether such developers initiate force or fraud?

1. Do developers of proprietary software force or fraud people into accepting their restrictive terms of use and distribution?

Generally, no! There are of course some exceptions and Microsoft is guilty of some of them (often using law because this is the only way they can “legitimately” force people). But most proprietary software developers probably don’t force anyone to accept their terms. They wont give you a copy, of course, but they wont force it upon you either. You might even get a copy of their software elsewhere for free (warez…) and most of them still wouldn’t actively go about pursuing you.

So in what way is offering software under restrictive terms unethical??

Well, that’s where I reach the crunching point. I don’t seem to have a very satisfactory answer. Universally speaking, nothing. It’s not initiation of force and nobody is being harmed. If someone accepts the license then (s)he is responsible for accepting the restrictions that come with it. So what makes someone, like Richard Stallman, believe that it is unethical or immoral is pretty much because he doesn’t like it, a feeling that he developed throughout his life’s experiences, when he felt like being pressured into non-cooperation by the trend of releasing software under restrictive terms.

This trend, however, wouldn’t have continued if people refused to accept such restrictive terms. However, it would also have quite a bit of difficulty continuing should have the market been free of government regulation. Just think of continuous extensions of the term and scope of copyright law and the “limited liability” blanket for big corporations (obviously, including Microsoft) or all the lobbying those corporations then successfully did to force even worse restrictions upon us. The state played a very significant role in fueling the trend of restrictive licensing. What I’m basically saying is that we probably wouldn’t have a proprietary software monopoly in 90s nor would some of us be so adamantly disgusted by proprietary software if state regulation didn’t help make restrictive terms THE standard contract under which software was distributed.

If it was a Free Market and restrictive contracts somehow gained such foothold then we would just be the “unfortunate” minority, but at least it’d be much easier for us to just do our GNU thing and be left alone, no laws to fight against which threaten the existence of even our nice GNU software itself (DMCA, software patents etc.).

So in essence the true problem was not the fact that many people wanted you to agree to certain restrictive terms before they give you the binary of it, because this is a choice every individual is free to make. The problem was that the governments, coercive monopolies, actually helped make such a model standard – they forcefully (how else) interfered with the natural developments in the market to artificially create a situation in which we are.

So what do people who don’t like such terms do about it? Earlier I expressed that I believe that whatever you do it shouldn’t include initiatory force or fraud. Richard Stallman responded with a license, turning copyright law’s default terms on their head: copyleft. Given the circumstances this probably was the smart thing to do. However, there is a problem.

It was the state, the government and their laws which created the bulk of the problem in the first place and now we are trying to solve it by using, again, the state, the government and its laws. We are “forcing back”. We are “regulating back”. We are spinning in circles. And what is the ultimate conclusion of this trend? What would happen in Free Software way of using copyright, regulating the market etc. took as much foothold as proprietary software has today? Take it from Richard Stallman’s mouth:

“Proprietary software should be illegal” — Richard Stallman

There you have it. Richard’s morality imposed on everyone else by force through law. People who for whatever reason want to release their software under more restrictive terms than Stallman would allow could be punished for it.

It’s just replacing one kind of regulation with another. Free Software may be better, but forcing it is not the way and that’s what Stallman wants to do.

The bottom line is this. Freedom is not “be free or I’ll rob you or throw you in jail”. Freedom is not “freedom or else”. Freedom can only exist without force. You therefore CANNOT force freedom.

Therefore, I would rather live in a free market where proprietary software has 90% market share than in a state where Free Software is enforced by law.

Of course, I extremely doubt that proprietary software would ever win in the free market. The point is, I would have exactly the same amount of freedom whether proprietary software has most or least market share, if it was a free market. Compare that to our “regulated market” with all the laws actually favoring proprietary software and threatening the existence of Free Software.

Another point I want to make, based on all this, is that someone using proprietary software is a choice everyone has a right to, just as the choice to use Free Software. This whole “100% Free Software or you’re helping evil” mantra is largely missing the point. You wont be free if you put exclusively Free Software on your computer. You will be free once you become aware of the fact that only you can control your own life and nobody else and that you have no right to control anybody elses life. By realizing this you would become a voluntaryist and you would free your mind.

That’s where freedom is, not in how many which licenses or contracts you willfully accepted, but in being aware of your personal power enough to make what you think and feel is the right decision in any moment, yes even if that decision sometimes includes proprietary software.

Thank you

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Redefining Freedomware

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

“Freedomware” is a marketing term for Free Software which conventially refers to software that is licensed in a way that grants the software user rights corresponding to the four freedoms devised by Richard Stallman.

Many believe that licensing software with these rights, and offering it along with source code which is a precondition to exercising these rights, is the only moral and/or ethical way of offering and distributing software. Others may merely concede that it is ethically superior, but not necessarily the only ethical way or even that ethics doesn’t even enter the picture and that it is merely a practical concern.

Rarely, if ever, does anyone take issue with the act of “licensing” itself as it is understood by most people today. As such licensing essentially involves a software developer combining a chosen piece of text or his own piece of text with another piece of text written by someone from the organization called government to form a set of rules which, as the general belief is, must be respected under the threat of force if you don’t.

Don’t look so surprised. Every set of rules that comes from the government organization and is usually called “law” is forced. There appears to be no exceptions.

That said, since I don’t believe in initiatory force I don’t believe in government nor law, and therefore I don’t believe in copyright law. You can tell that greatly alters my perspective of Free Software. I no longer see government as a valid party in the developer – user relationship and what a “copyright license” ends up being is nothing but a statement of probable requests by a developer to the user of conditions he wants to be met before and while the software he produced is used. I could call it a sort of a contract.

Furthermore I actually believe in developer’s right to state whichever conditions he wants stated for the use of software he originally made, no matter how restrictive they are. I believe, in fact, in his right to do just about anything that doesn’t involve force upon someone else.

And that’s a catch. :) In a circumstance in which all involved parties, unlike me, believe in the validity of government and law, therefore giving others the power to initiate force upon them, they also believe that a copyright license is forced. So when a developer’s conditions are too restrictive, those restrictions are forced on users, unless they choose to not get that software in the first place, which as we’ve seen was a pretty hard thing to do considering the fact that vast majority of software used to be under restrictive licenses.

What gave this threat of force teeth are numerous cases in which such force was indeed initiated, such as many homes raided in search for “pirated” software or music CDs etc. It was enough to show people that they have something to fear, albeit not quite enough to stop mass illegal file sharing from continuing.

In such conditions, in which everyone believes in this force as legitimate they would of course try to find just as legitimate means to impose conditions which are a little more favorable. Enter four freedoms, BSD, GPL etc..

These are copyright licenses just as any other and are therefore using the system of force just as any other. They just happen to be a little nicer in their requirements, according to most people. You are *allowed* to do more. It was definitely a path to *more* freedom and as freedom always does it spawned more innovation and production of software wealth.

Unfortunately, by depending on an anti-freedom system to exist, however, Free Software has not nor ever will, alone and by itself, give people true freedom and 100% of freedom. Richard Stallman, indeed, is not your savior. The proliferation of his ideology merely enabled an option which makes the force in the name of law more bearable, even if much more bearable. His copyleft may turn copyright may have turned the “default license” on its head, but it changed absolutely nothing about the nature of copyright as a set of rules forced on anyone.

Now, if everyone, like me, stopped believing in the validity of “government” and “law” they would also stop feeding the power of those professing to work for the “government” and “law”, removing the teeth of force. A developer still has every right to state his conditions, but the only laws that could enforce whatever these conditions are the laws of nature, or if he chooses so, his own fist or gun, in which case he’ll quickly find himself out of the software business and in the shame of ostracism, if not worse.

So a proprietary software equivalent in this situation would be software binaries offered by a developer under the conditions that it not be copied at all (perhaps with the exception of a backup copy) and that it is installed on only one computer at a time. If someone buys a copy of his software and specifically agrees to these conditions, yet breaks them by making more copies and installing on multiple machines, the developer would have all right to complain to the undersigned arbitration agency and seek damages.

The arbitration agent is an expert in law, but not the law some people wrote to force on everyone else, but the natural law, the reality, the science of things, including the nature of humans and human interaction. That said, it is still possible that an arbiter would sometimes judge that the user needs to pay small damages fee, but it is unlikely that it would ever be a prohibitively expensive sum. However, after a while it is likely that there would be a precedent set which would essentially determine that in reality there is nothing the user actually damaged the developer for.

The copies he gave are often to people who wouldn’t buy it anyway, yet neither of the copies made leave the developers with one less. Software is not moved from one location to another like physical objects. It’s multiplied. I don’t lose anything if you make a copy of a song I made and gave to you. It would also soon likely be determined that often times the user actually gave developer free marketing by sharing his software, even if against his will.

Before you know it it would simply be a normal free market practice to not even bother with such restrictive contract terms because they just don’t work in reality. Not only do they sooner or later put both the developer and the user through the arbitration costs, but denying people to do free marketing for them is just a bad business strategy, not to mention stupid.

Interestingly, this is something even today when most people believe in “law” and “government”, Sun Microsystem’s president Jonathan Sczwartz realized.

The conclusion is, in a free market without government proprietary software as we know it would be simply stupid. Today it exists because it can still count on governmental coercion and related institutions of force. As long as we cling to such surreal abstractness as “government” and “law” to justify initiatory force we will suffer this dichotomy between reality and our own shared belief (illusion).

Free Software is extremely likely to be the default consideration of everyone in the truly free market.

This is partly why being a voluntaryist far outweighs my being a free software supporter. I believe the problem of proprietary software will be resolved much more easily and much more naturally in a truly voluntaryist free market.

However, not enough people have realized the illusion that their belief in government and law institutes yet. Within those circumstances the way I would define Freedomware or Free Software is as software which has been offered to me without the threat of force for such uses which correspond to four freedoms defined by Richard Stallman, which happen to coincide with everything I might want to do with my software anyway, without anyone who does believe in law and government viewing me with contempt and wishing to force me from doing otherwise.

In other words, the realm of Freedomware is just a bubble within the current system of force in which I can do some things I want to do without force being threatened against me for such actions. This is, of course, what makes Freedomware largely preferable to me, but since these rights provisioned for me via Freedomware licenses still totally depend on the system I oppose and invalidate it’s a rather awkward situation. I therefore will not promote “better copyright licenses” as a reason for people to consider free software.

Some might make that statement to mean that I am withdrawing from the free software movement, considering that some might consider the freer licensing to be THE definition of free software. But I find a little more in it: the culture and the mentality. Even if I forget the licenses, the law, the government, all that crap, I’m still left with the culture of sharing that developed around the concept that software should be free. There is still the mentality which makes people not mind if I something they made is shared.

That kind of mentality and that kind of culture is the kind of mentality I want to thrive in a free market and therefore I will continue to stand by it.

Where does that put my involvement with GNU/Linux Matters and Freedomware Marketing I am yet to decide. How do I promote this culture without promoting copyright law and the current system that involves coercive government?

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Free Market vs the OOXML

Sunday, March 30th, 2008

Ever since Open Document Format was standardized by ISO and Microsoft started pushing its own “open” format a significant portion of the Free Software community has been buzzing about how bloated, not really open and ultimately redundant Microsoft’s format is and moreover how Microsoft is using various “dirty tricks” to get its format approved as an open standard. I have to say I wasn’t among the many vocal on this issue and that the whole process of standardization, like much of other legal mumbo jumbo is both beyond my interest and skill.

However, certain thoughts and views I’ve adopted recently make me compelled to say something about the adoption of OOXML relative to ODF with regards to ISO standardization. Due to numerous signs showing how corruptible the process of standardization can be and especially if ISO finally decides to adopt OOXML as the standard despite these concerns, ISO may very well lose a chunk of respect as a standards body. Be that as it may, I wonder how much does ISO really matter here or at least just how much *should* it really matter anyway.

Regardless of whether a particular file format is recognized as a standard, if it is used commonly enough it will be a de-facto standard, a market standard. So even if OOXML becomes a formally approved and recognized standard, as long as laws do not mandate its use in one way or another, if enough people ignore it, it will be a dud. Conversely, if the market recognizes and largely uses ODF as the format of choice it will still be ODF that matters, and all this hoopla over OOXML might end up being over what basically amounts to a piece of paper (or a large block of paper, whatever these bureaucrats need to fill out in order to declare a standard).

And speaking of governments mandating use of a formally recognized standard, being already standardized ODF is at no particular disadvantage here. Furthermore, should the market accept ODF to a large enough extent compared to OOXML governments may be compelled to, even if they mandate anything, choose ODF.

So my proposal is quite simple in words, but will require a significant amount of both advocacy AND good marketing effort to pull out. The proposal is to keep fighting for the ultimate win of ODF in the market regardless of what ISO decides about it. If their format is approved, Microsoft will surely use that fact in their own marketing. However, if we can point out how corrupt the process leading to their approval was and furthermore reject the ISO decision as valid and then proceed to bypass it through market forces, advertising ODF as the true open format and all the advantages that come with that, being approved by ISO might not turn out to be such a compelling point.

Supporting open standards does not equate to supporting standards for which ISO said are standards. It means supporting technologies which were designed to be fully interoperable, compatible and transparently documented so as to be fitting for use by a large number of people without forming a situation of lock-in to a particular company. An open standard is a technology whose inner workings are completely transparent and whose use does not constitute dependance on any particular product or company, and which is commonly used in the market.

ODF is all that, except that there is still work to be done on the last part. OOXML on the other hand is not all that, and wont be no matter what stamp ISO puts on it. This will be just as true today as it will be after monday’s ISO decision.

This might sound like stating the obvious. Of course we’ll continue pushing ODF regardless of what ISO decides. However, if we can just declare en masse that we do not recognize ISO’s decision on OOXML (should it approve) and not let the market get the false message that their approval would send about OOXML, Microsoft may just find that all their effort spent on getting themselves stamped by ISO wasn’t counting for much. And that’s exactly what I am hoping for. Use the market to devalue the ISO’s decision and therefore disarm Microsoft’s OOXML campaign.

For non-regular visitors the author of the above and this blog, is the founder and maintainer of Libervis Network (which includes Libervis.com and Nuxified.org) and a member of GNU/Linux Matters. I am a technology enthusiast and a freedom advocate.

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There is something sick in the OpenBSD community

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2008

The amount of evident hatred that is being bred in the lines of the OpenBSD community is just incredible. Theo De Raadt may be a genius, but that says nothing about his polarity. If driven by negative emotions of the kind that he so often displays he’ll do good while calling everyone else evil.

What do I mean? I refer you to the Great Flamewar 2007.12:

Comments on LWN may ultimately suggest that this latest flame war is merely a collision of two great, but incompatible personalities. However it was not only Theo who replied with castigation and misinterpretation taken as fact – most of the posters did so. But in any case it provides an insight into just the kind of cultures and regards that exist in vicinity of these personalities.

And I would pick RMS’s uncompromising yet cool and civil attitude any day. For me Theo and his OpenBSD cult has utterly crossed the line, making OpenBSD one project I do not want to associate myself with if I were given a chance to. I would use it, sure, but I can’t support the kind of culture that runs it.

This whole flamewar is based on utter exaggeration by the OpenBSD people. A mere and fully expectable statement by RMS that OpenBSD would not be recommended by him has been blown out to be a statement of his hatred towards OpenBSD. Yet what is evident is exactly the opposite, the apparent hatred of many in the OpenBSD community towards RMS and the FSF.

Honestly I think they found the wrong authority to rebel against like spoiled teenagers, which is just incredible considering the choice of other authorities with agendas much worse and much more “totalitarian” (as Theo suggests) than one can imagine FSF ever being!

Just incredible.. No wonder the whole FOSS thing, at least to me, so often inspires nothing but frustrations. You can’t even be friends with those who you’re fighting side by side with! Is there any wonder people become apolitical and numb?!? So much for user-friendly Free Software community.

The fact that RMS kept his cool even as everyone else was bursting in flames lays down an image clearer than anything. When your debating opponents has to resort to flaming to defend his side you know who lost the debate.

Reading the thread mailing list thread, I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen so much willing misinterpretation, castigating and frankly bullying against a single person by a whole bunch all in one thread! I am appalled. The saddest thing that some “moron” reader incapable of objectively weighing the sides will probably, after reading the mailing list, be very tempted to side with this OBSD crucifying crowd, simply because of not knowing Richard Stallmans well stated, but due to their precise nature subtle positions and falling into the emotional trap they set up there.

I have to utterly admire how he did not lose it there and spew an emotional comment of his own. Heck even I am angry. I have to stand in awe at the kind of stamina he shows there.

But it makes me incredibly sad, to find that people who profess to be and practically actually end up being “freedom fighters” would so much castigate a person who is actually on the same side, who dedicated a whole life to this cause. It just shows the degree of evil and unfairness that can be seen in this world, even in the supposedly most positive facets of society. I mean, if people this smart can be so utterly consumed by their misguided emotions so as for them to be so deeply ingrained into their personality, what does this say about an everyday man who believes (s)he is not smart enough and hence drowns him/herself in a matrix of social norms that turn them into cranky emotional drones.

Yeah, welcome to the 2008, f***ed up humanity! What or who are you gonna screw up next? :(

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First report from Open Translation Tools ’07 conference

Friday, November 30th, 2007

Open Translation Tools 2007 tools conference is being held these days in Zagreb, Croatia, where I live. So naturally I attended, and it was also a good opportunity for Taco to attend as well because I could host him, to demonstrate Passiflora and gain new interesting contacts.

My main purpose is to scoop up information and ideas on available tools and concepts that could potentially help GNU/Linux Matter’s non-profit’s web projects as well as current and future Libervis Network projects.

While I’m actually quite a beginner in the realm of content translation and tools used for it, the nature of this conference is quite open ended and inclusive so it allows anyone, even with least experience on the issue to pull something useful out of it, at least learn about the various related issues as well as practical solutions to those issues.

Today was quite a day. I have to say that only today I talked with a lot more people than I talked to through the whole iCommons conference. This is just what OTT is. There are no keynotes and presentations. There are only collective discussions in groups and the atmosphere being strived for is such that really encourages participants to “boldly go” to meet who they didn’t meet before and hence find out about something or someone new..

One particular thing was especially fun and interesting, a so called “spectrogram” of people’s opinions where when a particular (usually controversial) statement is made people express their agreement or disagreement with that statement by physically standing on one or the other end of a line being drawn on the floor. Standing in the middle is basically being undecided or neutral. Then they are being asked to explain why is it that they are standing where they are standing.

All in all, in just one day I’ve learned quite a bit, experienced quite a bit and also gotten slightly surprised by the way things are going. Considering that I didn’t really came to this conference with a big plan or agenda of my own, but merely to use an excellent opportunity to participate on a FOSS related conference and just “scoop up information and ideas”, it’s proving to be more productive than I would have expected.

So, well, that’s about it from me for now.. Taco wrote a nice scoop about the first day as well so I refer you to check it out if you’re curious. :)

Cheers!

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Thank you Microsoft for giving me the weapon to shoot you with!

Wednesday, October 10th, 2007

We’ve talked about Microsoft on Libervis.com enough. It’s not all about them and Ballmer is an idiot, so why take anything he says really seriously? We should be attentive, but not obsessive.

Well, that’s why I am relegating my comment to Ballmers latest outburst to my blog, and allowing myself to have an outburst of my own.

I feel that groklaw has it right and that it really does make sense. There is no such thing as a changed Microsoft as long as a guy like Steve Ballmer is on top of it. Leaders define the organization more than its other members, especially when we are talking about an organization based on principles so far from appreciation of freedom. So when it becomes, yet again, evident that the leaders’ intention is to pretty much crush the competition they perceiv, even if it be the last thing they try to do, then damn it that’s what we should see them as and treat them as.

So, in other words, Microsoft is out to get us, or they think they are at least.. but this is a not a reason to fear, nor a reason to avoid Free Software to those who have been considering it. In a contrary! It is a reason to embrace it wholeheartedly.

Yes, with its stupid threats, empty regardless whether they will be acted upon or not, Microsoft, while hoping to create fear and uncertainty in some people, induces an incredible amount of motivation in others – just about enough motivation to destroy them. Isn’t one of the biggest things fueling the passion behind a large body of the Free Software movement, no matter how some want to resist that fact, its animosity towards Microsoft?

Who would argue that competition isn’t one of the best, perhaps the best ways to motivate incredible progress? Well, that’s where the key lies. Microsoft says they are competitive, but I don’t think that their view of “competitiveness” even begins to compare with the competitiveness of the Free Software movement.

Microsoft may think they can outsmart the movement, but I don’t think they comprehend the level of wit that is involved with the Free Software movement.

And as Microsoft’s leader, in all his glory and backed by all his illusions about the power that lies beneath him, dares to threaten the movement, I think we should only laugh at it as a puny little attempt of making themselves appear important. Isn’t it all that there is to it anyway? In a world of today, perceptions is what molds the reality of the day.

But they are puny and laughable because they can’t begin to realize that all their money, all their power and all their so called “intellectual” (omfg haha that was funny) property is NOTHING in the larger scheme of things compared to something as simple as a genuine passion for freedom, passion that simply knows of no petty boundaries that Microsoft leaders find their comfort in.

So while they feel all important and powerful making such obviously stupid threats, do they realize that by making these threats they’ve just helped motivate their perceived enemy (and in fact a REAL enemy at that) even more?

They certainly provoke me. And I think that’s about enough to prove a point.

So you see friends, while it’s not all about Microsoft, they have the unique power to provoke the world changing competitive passion (or anger you could say) which combined with a genuine concern for freedom amounts to a weapon that is ultimately going to be deadly for Microsoft as we know it.

And this makes me, in a sense, thank Microsoft for playing the role of this great motivator, for they just gave me the ultimate weapon against themselves. The trigger is in our hands.

I had the audacity to put this rant to digg.  Why? Because I feel there are many people who would identify with the feeling I expressed here. Let’s call it a fun experiment. :)

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