fsfe

FSFE Fellowship Representative, OSCAL'17 and other upcoming events

The Free Software Foundation of Europe has just completed the process of electing a new fellowship representative to the General Assembly (GA) and I was surprised to find that out of seven very deserving candidates, members of the fellowship have selected me to represent them on the GA.

What is the risk of using proprietary software for people who prefer not to?

Jonas Öberg has recently blogged about Using Proprietary Software for Freedom. He argues that it can be acceptable to use proprietary software to further free and open source software ambitions if that is indeed the purpose.

If Alan Turing was born today, would he be a Muslim?

Alan Turing's name and his work are well known to anybody with a theoretical grounding in computer science. Turing developed his theories well before anybody invented file sharing, overclocking or mass surveillance. In fact, Turing was largely working in the absence of any computers at all: the transistor was only invented in 1947 and the microchip, the critical innovation that has made computing both affordable and portable, only came in 1960, four years after Turing's death.

Brexit: If it looks like racism, if it smells like racism and if it feels like racism, who else but a politician could argue it isn't?

Since the EU referendum got under way in the UK, it has become almost an everyday occurence to turn on the TV and hear some politician explaining "I don't mean to sound racist, but..." (example)

Of course, if you didn't mean to sound racist, you wouldn't sound racist in the first place, now would you?

Going to FOSDEM, Brussels this weekend

This weekend I'm going to FOSDEM, one of the largest gatherings of free software developers in the world. It is an extraordinary event, also preceded by the XSF / XMPP Summit

Which movie most accurately forecasts the Trump presidency?

Many people have been scratching their heads wondering what the new US president will really do and what he really stands for. His alternating positions on abortion, for example, suggest he may simply be telling people what he thinks is most likely to win public support from one day to the next. Will he really waste billions of dollars building a wall? Will Muslims really be banned from the US?

Using a fully free OS for devices in the home

There are more and more devices around the home (and in many small offices) running a GNU/Linux-based firmware. Consider routers, entry-level NAS appliances, smart phones and home entertainment boxes.

21 November 1916

There has been a lot of news recently about the 100th anniversaries of various events that took place during the Great War.

On 21 November 1916, the SS Hunscraft sailed from Southampton to France. My great grandfather, Robert Pocock, was aboard.

He was part of the Australian Imperial Force, 3rd Divisional Train.

Are all victims of French terrorism equal?

Some personal observations about the terrorist atrocities around the world based on evidence from Wikipedia and other sources

Understanding what lies behind Trump and Brexit

As the US elections finish, many people are scratching their heads wondering what it all means. For example, is Trump serious about the things he has been saying, or is he simply saying whatever was most likely to make a whole bunch of really stupid people crawl out from under their rocks to vote for him? Was he serious about winning at all, or was it just the ultimate reality TV experiment?

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