---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Krishna Das <dasatps(a)gmail.com>
Date: 19-Dec-2006 21:23
Subject: Re: Condolense
Appropriate Technology Promotion Society (ATPS) which was he main source of
venture fund for OSS in its previous meeting has taken an administrative
decision to start an endowment in the name of Rajendran Chettan.
Every year we propose to launch a project in the Free software domain and
the students can work on this project, We will evaluate the work and present
the award to the best contributor.
Please give your suggestions.
Regards and lots of love
> This may be of interest to the group members--a spat between Ankit
> Fadia and another self-proclaimed security expert...I wonder if we, as
> a community, should respond to this.
i guess the only real way to respond is cheer and support those who are
really fighting for freedom. Those who want to ``bother us with politics"
are best ignored. At the end of the day the people who are actually
contributing to Free Software, even in the smallest possible way are the
ones who are going to change the world. Those who want to just have public
spats and quote big names, are free to do that. At the end of the day it
really achieves nothing except a waste of time and energy.
If someone has violated GPL, or even plagiarised someone's genuine copyrite
of a GPL'd program then it is a matter of concern and something must be
done. Though i personally doubt this case qualifies as one.
The only thing we can so is continue spreading awareness amoung the people
around us, and beyond of what Free Software is all about and why it's
Boston, MA—December 15, 2006—The Free Software Foundation (FSF) today
launched BadVista.org, a campaign with a twofold mission of exposing the
harms inflicted on computer users by the new Microsoft Windows Vista and
promoting free software alternatives that respect users' security and
"Vista is an upsell masquerading as an upgrade. It is an overall regression
when you look at the most important aspect of owning and using a computer:
your control over what it does. Obviously MS Windows is already proprietary
and very restrictive, and well worth rejecting. But the new 'features' in
Vista are a Trojan Horse to smuggle in even more restrictions. We'll be
focusing attention on detailing how they work, how to resist them, and why
people should care", said FSF program administrator John Sullivan.
The campaign will organize supporters into effective and unusual actions
drawing attention to this daylight theft of computer users' rights,
aggregate news stories cutting through the Vista marketing propaganda, and
provide a user-friendly gateway to the adoption of free software operating
systems like gNewSense (http://www.gnewsense.org).
Peter Brown, executive director of the FSF said, "Whilst Microsoft embarks
upon its largest ever product launch, its marketing dollars will be spent in
an effort to fool the media and user community about the goals of Vista. Our
campaign will ask the important questions. Can you set yourself or your
company free? Can you ever be free from Microsoft? As with our campaign
against Digital Restrictions Management, we aim to demonstrate that
technologists can be social activists, because we know the harm that Vista
Among other harms, BadVista.org will focus on the danger posed by
Treacherous Computing in Vista. Commonly called Trusted Computing in the
industry, it is an attempt to turn computers from machines controlled by
their user into machines that monitor their user and refuse to operate in
ways that manufacturers don't authorize.
Supporters can sign up to receive more information and participate in the
campaign at http://badvista.org.
The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting
computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer
programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as in freedom)
software—particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants—
and free documentation for free software. The FSF also helps to spread
awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of
software. Their Web site, located at www.fsf.org, is an important source of
information about GNU/Linux. Donations to support their work can be made at
http://donate.fsf.org. They are headquartered in Boston, MA, USA.
Press Contact: For more information about this announcement or to schedule
an interview, please contact Peter Brown or John Sullivan at +1-617-542-5942
or <pr(a)fsf.org> <pr(a)fsf.org>.
M$ is known to bribe politicians secretly and announce concessions to public
institutions openly. What is disturbing here is that all left-front ruled
governments in India figure in their list as do the Government at the centre,
where the left-front is the principal supporter for its policies. Is Bill
Gates' anti-theological stand (made public in 1996 when e-governance was taking
roots in Kerala), such a strong and convincing reason for this covert
friendship. Will they do this to all capitalists who renounce existence of God
I think this is a terrible shame and more shameful is the fact that they had
already entered into strategic partnership and alliance with State Governments
involved for e-governance efforts, when news were spread that Microsoft became
a technology choice after due deliberations with expert committees. Microsoft,
at least, is not lying here. Its the middlemen, those proxies, who are playing
the treacherous game with the citizens of the nation.
This message was sent using NWebmail, BSNL's Webmail Program
I suggest we should stop whining and do something. Inplace of accusing M$ of being hatching a conspiracy with GoI departments (this will anyway continue, even if we complain). Sometimes it is and can be partnership.
Why, the reasons should be obvious,
1) for a GoI officer/ babu, it looks cool if their name is associated with M$ (which no doubt is a big name), and is also a status symbol for them.
2) They can always claim that M$ will do this and that and will provide them with some immediate short term benefits that is tangible in terms of money.
3) They can relate to M$, from the one and only OS known/ taught to them into which they can _click_into_.
4) Don't forget the banquets/ dinners/ free passes to conferences.
5) And sometimes actual genuine help too, though usually inspired from future benefits M$ will/ can have.
and many more...
Free Software still has to go a long way in terms of acceptance, and our best bet is and should be the coming next generation, if they can be introduced to the concept of FLOSS and made to realise the benefits of FLOSS, especially the younger technocrats, who are shaping the future of Indian Computing Industry.
And if possible, provide solutions to the GoI people.
BTW don't expect too much from babus.
PS: If any one of you is familiar with DICE (A Windows based software developed by NIC for use in sarv sikhya abhiyan), I am working on a free, web based and generic version of it, still in preliminary stages, anyone interested?
Ajay Pal Singh Atwal
Dept of CSE & IT
BBSBEC, Fatehgarh Sahib
Unfolding of the drama
"September 28, 2006 -- Microsoft India today announced the winners of its first
“Microsoft E-governance awards”. The first of the annual awards set
up to recognize the most impactful E-governance applications in the country
received over 300 nominations and the winners include 20 E-governance
applications implemented across the country (the names of the winners are
attached in the addendum). The projects nominated include those developed by
the National Informatics Centre (NIC), State IT Departments, and Department of
Information Technology, Government of India in partnership with Microsoft..."
"Mr Ravi Venkatesan, Chairman, Microsoft India added, “E-governance is a
critical necessity for our country today. A strong E-governance infrastructure
enables an efficient and transparent governance mechanism providing a thrust to
the development indices of a country. We are very happy to be working with the
Indian governments on creating such applications.”.."
"As pioneers in the E-governance space in India, Microsoft has been working
closely with various departments of the Central and State Governments and
Public Sector organizations for the last 13 years. Currently Microsoft partners
with 14 state governments and there are nearly 150 e-governance applications
running on the Windows platform. Additionally Microsoft continues to create
benchmarks in local language computing and community outreach programs that
help facilitate affordable access to technology in rural areas for effective
delivery of E-governance service..."
Complete official document at
(also available as cached google page - if M$ withdraws this document)
Surely this is an occasion of national shame to all of us, who work to propagate
values of freedom in an information society. It should also put to shame the
recommendations of Knowledge Commission of India to Govt of India - because
already 14 states have already entered into partnership with Microsoft, some
for the last 13 years. Its also a shame to the Right to Information Act 2005,
where "preservation of confidentiality of sensitive information" has been
thrown to winds - because these are now guaranteed only if US State agrees -
refer Akbar Raj's case and the stunts followed by Kerala Police with Microsoft
HQs and US Security Department.
No longer can the Ministry of Local Self Governments in Kerala now deny that
Information Kerala Mission is outside this nefarious design of this proprietary
corporate. Even then which are the other 13 states ? What is NIC doing with
Microsoft ? What is Min of IT, Govt of India doing with Microsoft ?
Are all these happening with the consent of the citizens ?
Do we have a right to know ?
This message was sent using NWebmail, BSNL's Webmail Program
Boston, December 13th 2006 - Free Software Foundation announces that it
will officially support the Free Ryzom campaign (www.ryzom.org) with a
pledge of $60,000.
The Free Ryzom campaign was established to purchase the online game and
universe known as Ryzom, property of the now bankrupt Nevrax company,
and release the entire game as free software.
As stated by Peter T. Brown, Executive Director of the Free Software
Foundation, the FSF considers the Free Ryzom campaign "a high priority
project for the free software movement". The aim of the campaign is to
publish the source code to the entire game under the terms of the
widely-used GPL, as well as publishing all of the artwork and other
content under similar free licenses.
The Free Ryzom campaign represents a unique opportunity for the free
software movement and the emerging free gaming field. A fully free
MMORPG (massively multiplayer online roleplaying game) engine and
client/server architecture would allow the development of a myriad of
universes, each one evolving its own philosophy and unique content - but
sharing in general technical improvements. If successful, this campaign
would allow any user to create their own universe and produce their own
content based on the Ryzom/Nevrax architecture.
Since the announcement by Nevrax of their bankruptcy, the Free Ryzom
campaign has drawn together a heterogeneous community of volunteers
formed by ex-employees, current players and free software sympathizers.
With the support of the FSF, it is now expected that the campaign will
be able to increase its bid to over 200.000€.
The campaign is also seeking to create a non-profit organization to run
and maintain the current game servers. Monthly fees would be spent on
service costs and game development. Pledges can be submitted at the Free
Ryzom campaign website (www.ryzom.org). Pledges must be made within the
next few days, since the deadline for the final bid is expected sometime
before Wednesday, December 19th, depending on when the judges make their
About the Free Software Foundation
The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting
computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute
computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of Free (as
in freedom) Software - particularly the GNU operating system and its
GNU/Linux variants - and Free Documentation for Free Software. The FSF
also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of
freedom in the use of software. Their web site, located at www.fsf.org,
is an important source of information about GNU/Linux. They are
headquartered in Boston, MA, USA.
About The Free Ryzom Campaign
The Free Ryzom Campaign is a community-based initiative formed to
purchase the MMORPG game Ryzom from the now-bankrupt Nevrax. Players,
former Nevrax employees, and free software sympathizers have partnered
with Olivier Lejade (former CEO of Nevrax, now CEO of Mekensleep) and
Valentin Lacambre (a well known personality related to the alternative
Internet movement in France) to purchase the game and release the source
code under the terms of the GNU GPL, and the content and artwork under
similar free licenses. For more information on their campaign, or to
make a donation pledge, please visit www.ryzom.org
info-fsf mailing list info-fsf(a)gnu.org
Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (TIFR), Mumbai hereby invites
applications for 4 positions for the post of Project Assistant/Project
Candidates should have any of the following qualifications: -
B.E.; B. Tech.; B.C.A.; M.C.A.; B.Sc. / M.Sc. (Computer / Information
Technology) Degree or equivalent with minimum 50% marks. Candidate
should be aware of Object Oriented Programming (preferably in Python),
familiarity with Web Engineering (XHTML, XML, JAVA Script), and
databases (preferably in Zope, RDBMS).
A candidate familiar with free software development methodology
(GNU/LINUX, CVS, Sourceforge, Savannah and such collaborative
platforms, etc.), additional experience in e-learning platforms
(Moodle, Jabber, etc) and content management systems (Plone,
Wikimedia, Drupal, etc.) will be preferred. Competence in Indian
language computing will be useful.
The position is purely temporary, for one year in the first instance
and extendable by another six months. Honorarium will be paid as
Candidates with relevant proven experience of more than one or two
years will be considered for Rs. 12,000/- per month to Rs. 15,000/-
per month. Fresh candidates will be considered for Rs. 8,000/-per
month to Rs. 10,000/- per month.
Age: Below 25 years (relaxable in deserving cases).
Application giving full details such as Name, Date of Birth, Full
address with phone/mobile number and e-mail address, Educational
Qualification, names and addresses of two referees (attach
certificates) together with true copies of relevant certificates,
testimonials duly attested & superscribing the post applied for and
the Notice No. 20/06 on the envelope, should reach the Administrative
Officer, Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education, T.I.F.R, V. N.
Purav Marg, Mankhurd, Mumbai – 400 088 before December 15, 2006.
Applicants in Govt. / Semi-Government / Public Sector undertakings /
Autonomous body must apply through proper channel.
Alternatively, one could also send an email to hbcse(a)gnowledge.org
with the subject line "Application for the post of Project Assistant"
with all the relevent documents attached.
Get GNU/Hurd shell accounts from
Ask for an account at #hurd
You can also write email to (the freshly created)
<hurd-shell-account(a)gnu.org> to get an account set-up for you.
"Value your freedom, or you will lose it, teaches history.
`Don't bother us with politics', respond those who don't want to learn."
-- Richard Stallman
Me scribbles at http://www.pravi.co.nr