Java is Free! Thank You Sun.

Posted in Free Software, Java at 5:05 pm by Pirate Praveen

Java is Free!

I think Sun has well, with this contribution have contributed more than any other company to the free
software community in the form of software. It shows leadership. Its an example I hope others will follow.
— Dr. Richard Stallman, Founder of GNU Project and Free Software Foundation

This is indeed great victory for Free Software. A great part of this incredible progress is due to the great work of so many Free Java hackers. The runtime, compilers and GlassFish Aplication server will be available under GPLv2 and the libraries under GPLv2+classpath exception.

–j4v4m4n (that is my IRC nick and what my friends call me, so it is even a personal victory for me!)


Groklaw has more details about Microsoft Novell agreement

Posted in Free Software at 4:57 pm by Pirate Praveen

Some quotes from Groklaw article.

I just realized the full significance. Novell here is stepping outside the line of fire and agreeing with Microsoft that *end users* are the ones that you must go after in any patent infringement dispute. Shades of SCOsource. Thanks for nothing, Novell. More questions: When were Novell SUSE customers asked if they wished Novell to negotiate a agreement with Microsoft on their behalf? When were Novell SUSE customers asked about the terms of said agreement? What consideration does Microsoft get from Novell’s customers? Does negotiating this agreement on Novell’s customers’ behalf indicate that Novell assumed Power of Attorney for their customers in this matter? Did Novell truly represent the best interest of their customers using Power of Attorney? Can Novell legally assume Power of Attorney for their customers without a written grant? Do Novell customers have the ability to “opt-out” of this agreement? Is this agreement binding on customers?

Now do you get it, that “Tivoization” is a metaphor for creative ways to make the GPL toothless? It’s a trend, not an isolated event. There’s money to be made, and the GPL is getting in their corporate way. What they forget is that the code came with a price. The terms of the GPL are that price.

Do you still believe GPLv2 is enough and Tivoization is an isolated insident? Participate in the GPLv3 revision process and help defend our Software and our Freedom.

Full story


Debian Conclave @ BMS

Posted in Bangalore, Debian, Free Software at 7:39 am by Pirate Praveen

We had a very interesting session at BMS last sunday (29th October) on Debian. The main aim was to discuss the plans for the upcoming Debian Developers Confererence 06, which will be organised as a Debian MiniConf during FOSS.IN 06 . We got very enthusiastic and positive participation from the audience, mostly students from BMS College of Engineering and some from Bangalore Institute of Technology and Dayanand Sagar College of Engineering.

A session on GIMP Image Editing

We had four of us (me, Deepak, Prasad and Aanjhan) delivering sessions. I started with introduction to Debian Operating System and the Debian community. It was a wonderful experience to talk to an audience which understood the importance of Freedom, thanks to our previous sessions ( Software Freedom Day and FOSS Day ) there and a talk by RMS himself (See some photos here, but you need to be a member of bmslug to view this). You can get the presentations as odp or pdf. I talked about the differences between various flavours (distributions) of GNU/Linux and what makes Debian unique. Debians strong values (Debian Social Contract and Debian Free Software Guidelines), superiour packaging (dpkg and apt with automatic dependency tracking), availability of large number of packages (18000+), completely democratic functioning to mention a few. The I talked about some of the materials available to them like books and online resources. I also mentioned about Indian efforts in localising Debian and Indian Debian Community in general.

Deepak Kumar Tripathi on package management in Debian

Deepak Kumar Tripathi then talked about various package management commands (apt-get family) and also about how one can take up maintaining an orphaned package. Aanjhan showed some cool 3D effects with AIGLX and beryl window manager on his laptop after lunch.

After that Prasad Kadambi talked about debian-in (Debain for India) and why it is important to our country. You can get the slides as odp or pdf.

Prasad Kadambi on Debian for India

There was a popular demand for a session on GIMP and I showed them some of the features of GIMP which I use regularly like joining two or more pictures, creating logos, editing with layers …

There was really good questions from the audience, most of them using Fedora. One asked how to start developing Free Software rather than packaging? Aanjhan explained it will be good to start in a small way like reporting bugs and solving them and being a part of the community by undersatnding how the community works, coding styles and standards … rather than jumping off directly to developing your own application.

It was a very wonderful day, even though I was completely tired after the sessions it was worth it. BMSLUG, you folks rock!

Read Netra’s blog about the event.