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The transcript of RMS' speech at the National Institute of Technology, Trichy is
available from http://glugt.linuxisle.com/projects.shtml
A few quotes from the speech:
* About a year ago, some developers... some researchers found out that, they
figured out that, Windows XP when it asked for an upgrade, also reports to
Microsoft, what's installed on your disk. And it does this secretly, it sends
the list of files encrypted, so that it was impossible for people to tell easily
that this was going on.
* Even more bizarre, there is a malicious feature in the music sharing
program, Kaza, where the company... the developers sell time on your computer.
So, other people will pay Kaza, so that they can run their programs on your
* Paradoxically speaking, when you have a choice between several non-free
programs to do the same job, which ever one you choose the support for it is
going to be a monopoly afterwards, so at the beginning you get a choice, but
afterwards you are stuck in a monopoly.
* Well, there are lots of people in India who might be able to afford the
computer, but couldn't possibly afford the software, because they can just
barely afford a computer. So free software can make a big difference in terms of
who in India can get a computer and run it.
* But this is not what they are doing. And you can see easily if you look
around easily, government organization in India are mostly using non-free
software. And schools in India are using non-free software. This is a terrible
mistake, it is a foolish and disastrous policy, governments of course deserves
to use free software....
* And Microsoft did something really stupid. Well, really absurd.
Supposedly, they offered various governments access to the source code. But they
did it in a way that is fraudulent...
* As far as I can tell, some people are born with the skill program, are
born with their brains growing so that they will have the skill to program. They
will be natural programmers. But writing clear understandable software is
something you have to learn. That's judgment. The way you learn is by reading
lots of source and by changing lots of programs.
* So schools should use free software for the sake of education, but there
is an even deeper reason, because schools are not supposed to teach just facts,
just skills, but even more deep, they are supposed to teach the spirit of
goodwill, the habit of cooperating with other people.
* ...two weeks ago, when I met with Dr. Kalam and explained to him about why
schools should use free software and about how non-free software is colonial
system, I was really delighted, because he understood it instantly.
* But sometimes, there is a different issue that does make sense for
hardware. And that is the design spec, visible. You know, can the public get
copies of design, to find out what the hardware does. Well, this is necessary in
certain cases, so that you can check for malicious features...
* There are portable phones in Europe which have this feature, that somebody
can remotely tell the phone to listen to you. It really is a spy device, in the
most classical sense. And if you have a portable phone, do you know who could be
spying on you at any time?
Free the Code.
Free the User.
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