I was invited to Australia so as to speak at the Builder conference, which was canceled shortly before I got there (but they had already bought my tickets). This did not mean the visit was wasted, since I had arranged 9 other speeches. The Australian Senate had attached some conditions to the US-Australia Free Trade Agreement, and it looked like the US might reject the treaty as a result, which would give Australia a second chance to escape. I arranged to give several speeches about the danger of software patents.
A week ago my plan was to give two speeches in Amsterdam on Wednesday Sep 29, then go to Paris on Sep 30. But in Geneva I learned that there was an e-Democracy conference in Paris on Sep 30 at which it would be useful for me to speak. Francis Muguet was organizing my participation, but it turned out on Tuesday that the only time I could speak was the morning.
I went to Norway to speak at a Java conference, and I was probably the only person in the room who did not know the Java language. (I expect to be in Java a month from now, and I've been studying Indonesian on and off for a couple of years, but I have never learned to read Java.)
This morning I arrived in Geneva for a meeting of consumer groups on how to deal with the problems caused by WIPO(an organization whose aim is to impose increased "intellectual property rights" on the public).
On my next-to-last day in La Paz, I went to see the ancient ruins of Tiwanaku, and Lake Titicaca. My hosts and I hired a taxi for the whole day--it was the only way to go. When we got to Tiwanaku, we took a little too long eating lunch, which forced us to hurry a bit visiting the ruins and the museum.
I am now visiting La Paz, Bolivia. The city is on the edge of the altiplano, starting on the plain at 13000 feet and running down through a connected series of valleys. The result is amazing beauty. Traveling between neighborhoods often means seeing marvelous vistas. The snow-capped mountain Illimani can also be seen from much of the city.
To pay so much attention to Bill Gates' retirement is
missing the point. What really matters is not Gates, nor
Microsoft, but the unethical system of restrictions that
Microsoft, like many other software companies, imposes on its