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October

by Matt Lee Contributions Published on Dec 06, 2011 05:17 PM

Issue 19, October 2009

Welcome to the Free Software Supporter, the Free Software Foundation's monthly news digest and action update -- being read by you and 25612 other activists.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

  • New bounty program for finding nonfree works in free distributions
  • Wrapping up the 25th anniversary of GNU
  • Get involved with the Windows 7 Sins campaign!
  • Software Freedom Day 2009: Thanks for coming to celebrate with us!
  • Women in Free Software Summit
  • Mac OS X mistakes and malfeatures
  • Xander Vedejas is the GNU Generation member of the month!
  • Lest CodePlex perplex
  • Submit your nominations for the 2009 Free Software Awards
  • Sugar Labs and FSF join efforts promote children's learning platform
  • FSF files brief in Supreme Court case to eliminate software patents
  • GNU spotlight with Karl Berry
  • Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF events
  • Take action with the FSF!

FSF announces new bounty program, offering "GNU Bucks" for finding

nonfree works in free distributions

The Free Software Foundation will begin rewarding those who find and report any nonfree components in free software operating system distributions with public recognition and "GNU Bucks." Those qualifying for the award will receive a "GNU Buck" bank note, in the amount of pi and signed by Free Software Foundation president and "Chief GNUisance" Richard Stallman.

25 years of GNU - support software freedom!

Are you a member of the FSF? We mark the end of our year-long celebration of the 25th anniversary of the GNU Project with an appeal for new members.

Get involved with the Windows 7 Sins campaign!

Some ways you can help with the Windows 7 Sins campaign, even if you have just 5 minutes.

Software Freedom Day 2009: Thanks for coming to celebrate with us!

It was a nice, crisp fall day outside, but we had a great group of people gathered inside Encuentro 5 in Chinatown for Boston's Software Freedom Day. There were talks on hacking your blog, women in free software, free software on mobile devices, and how free software economics works.

Women in Free Software Summit: One giant step for free software

womankind!

Just a month ago we announced our intent to hold a summit to talk about the very important issue of increasing women's participation in free software. The mini-summit was also a kick-off for us here at the FSF to start building a campaign program that brings more women into the community.

Mac OS X mistakes and malfeatures

While Apple has not, it seems, imposed changes by force, it has a record of making users install harmful changes on pain of losing functionality, and misleading users about what these changes do.

Xander Vedejas is the GNU Generation member of the month!

Xander has primarily been working on Valix, a new operating system with a simple and integrated approach. Working in assembler and C, he has begun creating an operating system that already has an integrated graphics system and a programming language in the works.

Lest CodePlex perplex

Many in our community are suspicious of the CodePlex Foundation. Someday we will be able to judge the organization by its actions (including its public relations). Today we can only try to anticipate what it will do, based on its statements and Microsoft's statements.

Submit your nominations for the 2009 Free Software Awards

Nominations are requested by 31 October 2009.

The Free Software Foundation Award for the Advancement of Free Software is presented annually by FSF president Richard Stallman to an individual who has made a great contribution to the progress and development of free software, through activities that accord with the spirit of free software.

Sugar Labs and FSF announce joint efforts to promote learning

platform for children

The FSF has upgraded its hosting services support of Sugar Labs to keep pace with its growth. As part of the ongoing relationship, Bernardo Innocenti, a member of the Sugar Labs Oversight Board, is working at the FSF offices.

FSF files brief in Bilski case calling on the Supreme Court to

eliminate software patents

The Free Software Foundation submitted an amicus curiae brief calling on the Supreme Court to affirm that software ideas are not patentable. After outlining the positive impact that the free software movement and the GNU General Public License (GNU GPL) have had on computer use, the brief explains how software patents are an obstacle and a danger to software developers.

GNU Spotlight with Karl Berry

Here are the recent GNU software releases:

coreutils-7.6 dfarc-3.4 freedink-1.08.20090918 freeipmi-0.7.13 gengen-1.4.1 gengetopt-2.22.3 global-5.7.6 gnash-0.8.6 gnutls-2.8.4 gxmessage-2.12.4 gzip-1.3.13 icecat-3.5.3 ignuit-0.0.15 mailutils-2.1 octave-3.2.3 pem-0.7.8 pexec-1.0rc8 plotutils-2.6 solfege-3.14.8 source-highlight-3.1.1 wget-1.12 zile-2.3.12

I'd like to specially note the first new release of gzip (the longstanding GNU compression package) in many years. Thanks to the new co-maintainer, Jim Meyering, for reviving this. And thanks also to Jim for actively maintaining GNU coreutils and other fundamental GNU packages for many years.

To get announcements of most new GNU packages, subscribe to the info-gnu mailing list: http://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/info-gnu. Nearly all GNU software is available from http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/, or preferably one of its mirrors (http://www.gnu.org/prep/ftp.html).

This month we welcome Jean-Michel Sellier's new package dionysus, intended to provide access to scientific constants. Jean-Michel also maintains the GNU packages archimedes and aeneas for submicron semiconductor design.

Several GNU packages are looking for maintainers and other assistance. Please see http://www.gnu.org/server/takeaction.html#unmaint if you'd like to help. The general page on how to help GNU is at http://www.gnu.org/help/help.html. To submit new packages to GNU, see http://www.gnu.org/help/evaluation.html.

As always, please feel free to write to me, karl@gnu.org, with any GNUish questions or suggestions for future installments.

Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF events

  • 2009-10-08 | The Danger of Software Patents -- Wellington, New Zealand - Victoria University of Wellington, RHLT 2, in the Rutherford House on the Pipitea Campus. Richard Stallman will explain how software patents obstruct software development.

  • 2009-10-09 | A Free Digital Society -- Wellington, New Zealand - HULT 220, Hunter Building, Kelburn Parade. Richard Stallman speech. To make a digital society worthy of being included in, we must overcome six menaces to freedom: surveillance, censorship, restricted data formats, proprietary software, software as a service, and the War on Sharing.

  • 2009-10-12 | Copyright vs. Community -- Christchurch, New Zealand - Christchurch Town Hall, 86-95 Kilmore Street. Richard Stallman speech. Copyright developed in the age of the printing press, and was designed to fit with the system of centralized copying imposed by the printing press. But the copyright system does not fit well with computer networks, and only draconian punishments can enforce it.

  • 2009-10-25 | The Free Software Movement -- Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Asia Pacific University College of Technology and Innovation (UCTI) Malaysia, Lot 6, Technology Park Malaysia (TPM), Bukit Jalil (http://foss.my/2009/venue/). Richard Stallman speech.

  • 2009-10-28 | The Free (Bebas) Software Movement -- Jakarta, Indonesia - BPPT Building II, M.H. Thamrin Street. Richard Stallman, founder of the free software movement (gerakan perangkat lunak bebas) and leader of development of the GNU operating system (with which the kernel Linux is typically used) will give a speech to explain the ethical and political ideas of free software, which differ from the ideas of open source, and explain how GNU was developed to realize these ethical goals. Registration is required.

Take action with the FSF

Contributions from thousands of individual members enable the FSF's work. You can contribute by joining at http://www.fsf.org/join. If you're already a member, you can help refer new members (and earn some rewards) by adding a line with your member number to your email signature like:

I'm an FSF member -- Help us support software freedom! http://www.fsf.org/jf?referrer=2442

The FSF is also always looking for volunteers (http://www.fsf.org/volunteer). From rabble-rousing to hacking, from issue coordination to envelope stuffing -- there's something here for everybody to do. Also, head over to our campaign section (http://www.fsf.org/campaigns) and take action on software patents, DRM, free software adoption, OpenDocument, RIAA and more.

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Copyright © 2009 Free Software Foundation, Inc.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/3.0/us/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, California, 94105, USA.

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