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SubjectRe: GNU/Linux in a binary world... a doomsday scenario
On Sat, 2005-12-10 13:44:38 -0700, Jeff V. Merkey <jmerkey@wolfmountaingroup.com> wrote:
> Jan-Benedict Glaw wrote:
> >On Sat, 2005-12-10 11:44:37 -0700, Jeff V. Merkey
> ><jmerkey@wolfmountaingroup.com> wrote:
> >>Two responses from people who live in socialist countries. Sure you
> >>agree, it's just status quo from your perspectives.
> >Jeff, I'm not sure if we both think about the same things when we talk
> >about "socialist", but I guess you may want to have a look at
> >Germany's history, as well as the whole newer history (like 50 years)
> >of Old Europe...
> I'm married to a German citizen and I visit Germany for 3-4 week stints
> once a year. Last year I went to Aachen and Amsterdam on vacation.
> Every computer store I visited sold pirated copies of Windows XP and
> Microsoft Office and in Amsterdam people were selling copies on the
> street corners in the Artis District.

Well, so what's your point? Germans and Netherlands tend to steal
software? Be it, but thses countries aren't socialistic at all...

> The entire culture has absolutely no concept of IP rights and I was
> amazed at how open folks are there about piracy. If someone did that in
> the US, they'd
> be in jail. I have lived in Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Crete, and
> I spent about 2 years in the UK when I was a younger man, and I have a
> really
> good handle on the culture over there. Even the republic countries
> which have democratic governments are very much socialist in terms of the
> lifestyle and the governments, and the way people live, so it's no
> surprise the whole concept of free software and the GPL are so natural
> to the
> culture of Europe in general.

What *may* be true is that possibly European mentality towards
"Intellectual Property" is somewhat different to the US. I've learned
to gain strength by sharing something (esp. knowledge) in a community
and not to basically try to de-share knowledge, making it a rare good.

Give a man a fish, he'll have food for the day. Teach a man fishing
and he'll have food for all his life. You probably know that
sentence. You seem to not distinguish between enforced sharing and
willfull sharing. That's where the problems arise.

> I have been very dismayed at how FOSS has been used as a vehicle to
> promote anti-american attitudes into our own culture. It's sad. I have
> lived in
> all these places and the only place where people have guaranteed rights
> as individuals and true freedom is America. I was in Germany in the late
> 1970's and earlt 1980's when the Bater-Meinhoffs were killing Americans
> in the streets and the Grune-Gehfahr (Green Party) was having
> demonstrations burning effigies of Uncle Sam in the Hauptewache District
> in Frankfurt. This younger generation has no concept of what they are
> supporting or how bad things can get. It is the doom of men that they
> forget.

Really? People, esp. the younger ones, really tend to get quite a lot
of political input. Just look at hot political topics that are
discussed in the media as well as at the school like the way the US
government (as well as some European governments) try to do their nice
war against terror and where it affects our daily life.

> At any rate, I do understand, and I have a son-in-law in Germany and
> grandchildren who speak German and not English (I know what Oh-pa means
> and I can always tell them "Ich Habe Dich Leib"), so I do agree the
> bonds between countries are becoming more and more blurred. I remember an
> older German man in Aachen in a Luftwaffe Uniform watching me with my
> grandson in Starbucks try to talk to each other and him smiling at the
> thought an American man has grandkids who are totally immersed in the
> German culture. At any rate, Stallman needs to in the next GPL incorporate
> capitalist provisions which will allow FOSS to become a self sustaining
> model. The US markets are abandoning Linux as a commerical offering
> and Windows is continuing to get stronger and stronger. It's tough to
> embrace technology when people cannot see a future in it. Hardware
> purchases aside.

I think you totally over-estimate the goal of GPL and/or FOSS. This is
what it's *not*:

- Kill commercial markets. (Though it'll bring PITA to some
commercial vendors that will need to compete with FOSS.)
- World domination. (There's always some granny loving Win3.1 so
there's always at least one {BSD,Linux,...} compatible computer
not running it. Also, would you as a FOSS programmer like to
support all these John McDummy users that cannot handle a
computer at all?)

Though, it is (besides other things):

- A lot of *personal* fun for some single, technically-skilled
programmers that like to hack software and present their work.
- A way to earn money (I've worked at a company using Linux and the
whole GNU stack of software for several years).

So not the whole worls spins around earning money. A lot of motivation
(especially speaking for myself) is just about programming,
self-teaching as well as teaching others and allowing others to use my
work (for money or not for money), as long as they use my rules (which
basically is: use it if you want, don't hide the details and give
something back, please.)

MfG, JBG

--
Jan-Benedict Glaw jbglaw@lug-owl.de . +49-172-7608481 _ O _
"Eine Freie Meinung in einem Freien Kopf | Gegen Zensur | Gegen Krieg _ _ O
für einen Freien Staat voll Freier Bürger" | im Internet! | im Irak! O O O
ret = do_actions((curr | FREE_SPEECH) & ~(NEW_COPYRIGHT_LAW | DRM | TCPA));
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