Hi! I’m Luis Villa. I’m a lawyer and programmer, focused on helping open innovators and creators do their thing.

My website

My blog, discussing a mix of tech, open source/culture, law, and my personal life.

Pictures I’ve taken of my life and travels.

Talks I’ve given on software, law, and open communities.

My Wife

Krissa NicholsRPCV and lover of local food.


I went to Columbia Law School, where I was Editor-in-Chief of the Science and Technology Law Review, and was awarded the Carroll Harper Prize for excellence in IP law scholarship.

After law school, I worked at Mozilla (leading the revision of the Mozilla Public License) and then at Greenberg Traurig, where I worked on technology transactions and the Google-Oracle case.

I have served on the board of directors of the Open Source Initiative, and as an Invited Expert on the Patents and Standards Interest Group at the World Wide Web Consortium.

Before law school, I was geek-in-residence at the Berkman Center For Internet and Society at Harvard Law School. I did mostly project management for Berkman projects like StopBadware and H2O, but also general geekery of various and sundry sorts.

Before that, I was a proud member and occasional manager of the Ximian desktop team, which became Novell’s Linux Desktop group.

I was a founding member of the GNOME bugsquad, and was the ‘bugmaster’ for many GNOME releases. I was also elected to several terms on the GNOME Foundation Board.

I used to be a very active legOS hacker, but am no longer actively involved with Lego Mindstorms.

I went to Duke, where I was a Cameron Crazy, and studied political science and computer science. I was lucky enough to have some brilliant profs like John BrehmTom SpragensScott de MarchiKaren StennerMichael Littman, and Owen Astrachan.

I grew up in sunny, green Coral Gables, Florida.

Not Me

You may have come here looking for another Luis Villa.

I am not Luis Villa, Jr., MD, an oncologist (and also my father).

I also am not Luis Villa, a Spaniard usability expert (and ex-lawyer).

If you’re another Luis Villa, drop a note and say hi! :)