Twice today I had to explain why I am so passionate about what I do, seemed worth writing up again, and figuring out where we are. In a nutshell, I don’t think that Free Software is a positive moral right (i.e., one that must be provided), but I do think that the ability to own, control, and modify your data is a negative moral right (i.e., one that must be protected) and the only way to provision that right in the current climate, IMHO, is to actively develop and spread the free software desktop, and tools that go with it that allow people to consume, create, and disseminate their ideas and creations. That means not just abi and gnumeric (though that is important) but gimp, and soon audio and video editing tools, and blogging tools and bittorrent and friends to get things out once they’ve gotten made. And ideally, of course, collaboration (you go, guys!) to make it easier to do these things, not just alone, but with friends. And of course tools for taking in whatever the passing fad of the day is, content-wrapper wise. We’re getting there- we’re finally consuming media like we want to, more or less, and people are talking about creating it and sharing it, which is awesome. But we still have a long way to go before we are the semiotic democracy and personal control platform we should be.
(phew). It is late at night, sorry for the rant. :)
Beyond that, it has been a good day… wrote some press release stuff and other marketing-y bits for the board, went to my last class, had a good talk with Professor Palfrey, got some hints for my next big law read, got a little more clarity on my paper for said class, and saw a cool talk about Public Radio Exchange– think an internal-only podcasting planet for public radio stations, sort of.
BTW, Charles Nesson, I mean, uh, eon, is insane, but still probably smarter than the rest of us.