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  1. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
  2. <html newsdate="2013-11-04" type="newsletter">
  3. <head>
  4. <title>FSFE Newsletter - November 2013</title>
  5. </head>
  6. <body>
  7. <h1>FSFE Newsletter - November 2013</h1>
  8. <h2>The good experimentation platforms</h2>
  9. <p newsteaser="yes">At the first glance some devices might look like crap. Why should anyone buy
  10. them? Some people laughed at your editor when he bought his <a
  11. href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Openmoko#Neo_FreeRunner">Open Moko Neo
  12. Freerunner</a>. You could buy cheaper devices with a faster CPU, more RAM, more
  13. disk space, nicer casing, better network connection, better microphone and
  14. speakers at that time.</p>
  15. <p>But devices like the OpenMoko are important for each one of us even if we
  16. are not buying them ourselves. They are crucial because they are hardware
  17. experimentation platforms which help programmers to learn how exactly
  18. computers work -- what the code is really doing -- and therefore enables them to
  19. write better software for all of us.</p>
  20. <p>Paul Boddie <a href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/pboddie/?p=452">wrote about one
  21. of those devices: the Ben NanoNote</a>. This device is completely supported
  22. by Free Software drivers within the upstream Linux kernel distribution. It does
  23. not rely on any proprietary software, including firmware blobs, for
  24. installation or running the device. The "Ben" encourages experimentation: you
  25. can re-flash the bootloader and the operating system with own images, and you
  26. can install programs of your choice.</p>
  27. <h2>The bad restrictions</h2>
  28. <p>The knowledge we, as a community, gain from those devices helps us to
  29. counterbalance IT manufacturers who use many different restrictions with
  30. different technology to take away control from us. On several
  31. devices the manufacturers decide which software we can install or remove from
  32. our computers, they do not want us to learn how the software works, and they do
  33. not want us to change the software. They decide how we can watch DVDs, which
  34. SIM cards providers we can use in our computers, and they want to be able to
  35. remotely delete our data including books, music, or movies.</p>
  36. <p>The questions is: do we let them do this? Do we accept those restrictions?
  37. And if we do not, what else do we need to counterbalance those
  38. developments?</p>
  39. <h2>The pretty local meetings</h2>
  40. <p>In FSFE we believe that a crucial part in this challenge are local meetings.
  41. We have to connect people opposing those restrictions and help each other how
  42. to explain the topics to other people. As mentioned in the <a
  43. href="/news/nl/nl-201310.html">last edition</a> we held the <a
  44. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/eal/2013/10/08/fsfes-first-european-coordinators-meeting">first
  45. meeting for coordinators of FSFE's local Fellowship groups</a>. Afterwards
  46. the group started to summarise <a
  47. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/hugo/2013/10/some-nice-tips-for-fsfe-local-meetings-organisers/">
  48. tips for FSFE local meetings organisers</a>, and Lucile Falgueyrac
  49. summarised <a
  50. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/lucile.falg/2013/10/14/tips-for-afk-meeting-moderation/">good
  51. practices for meeting moderation</a>.</p>
  52. <p>Beside the coordinators meeting, FSFE held its annual general assembly in
  53. Vienna. Jonas Öberg reflected <a
  54. href="http://jonasoberg.net/post/64107423387/reflections-of-fsfe-ga-mission-impact">how
  55. we worked on our mission impact</a> and Hugo Roy <a
  56. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/hugo/2013/10/2013-ga-in-vienna-day-2">wrote
  57. about the second day with the formalities</a>, including reelection of Karsten
  58. Gerloff as President and Reinhard Müller as Financial Officer. After 2 good
  59. years Henrik Sandklef stepped down as Vice President, and your editor was
  60. elected to take over that position.</p>
  61. <h2>Something completely different</h2>
  62. <ul>
  63. <li>Our Vienna group brought Free Software to a wider public. They organised
  64. <a
  65. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/franz.gratzer/2013/10/03/fsfe-booth-on-game-city-fair-2013-in-vienna/">an
  66. information booth at the Game City Fair 2013</a>, receiving a lot of questions
  67. about Valve's steam box. If you want to understand more about this, read <a
  68. href="https://lwn.net/Articles/567112/">LWN's article "Why Steam on Linux
  69. matters for non-gamers"</a>.</li>
  70. <li>Guido Arnold <a
  71. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/guido/2013/10/fellowship-meetings-rhinemain-an-experiment/">
  72. explains the new concept for local meetings in the Rhine/Main area</a>, and
  73. we have a new local FSFE group in Linz (Austria) which <a
  74. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/jzarl/2013/10/07/inoffizieller-bericht-zum-grundungstreffen-der-fellowship-gruppe-linz/">published
  75. their second report (German)</a>. So if you are interested in political,
  76. social, economic, or legal questions around Free Software, <a
  77. href="https://fsfe.org/events/events.en.html">join the groups</a> and try out
  78. the tips from above.</li>
  79. <li>Our sister organisation, the FSF, held a <a
  80. href="https://www.fsf.org/blogs/community/global-celebration-for-the-gnu-systems-30th-anniversary">global
  81. celebration for the GNU system's 30th anniversary</a>, and <a href="https://www.fsf.org/news/free-software-foundation-opens-nominations-for-the-16th-annual-free-software-awards">ask you
  82. to nominate individuals and projects for for the 16th Annual Free Software
  83. Awards</a> until Wednesday, 6 November 2013.</li>
  84. <li>As usual you will find news about Free Software in education in <a
  85. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/guido/2013/10/free-software-in-education-news-september/">the
  86. monthly education team update</a>.</li>
  87. <li>The <a
  88. href="https://joinup.ec.europa.eu/news/jamaica-ministry-health-adopts-gnu-health">Jamaica
  89. Ministry of Health adopted GNU Health</a>, and the <a
  90. href="https://joinup.ec.europa.eu/community/osor/news/german-development-ministry-recommends-open-source-smes">German
  91. development ministry recommends Free Software to small and medium
  92. enterprises</a>, as they say it opens up business opportunities for IT
  93. entrepreneurs and offers long-term resources for local ICT processes and
  94. innovations.</li>
  95. <li>Our friends at the EFF wrote about how the freedom to learn the workings
  96. of a program is prevented in the UK in the article: <a
  97. href="https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2013/08/speculation-trumps-academic-freedom-uk-court-censors-security-researchers-reverse">"Speculation
  98. Trumps Academic Freedom: UK Court Censors Security Researchers for Reverse
  99. Engineering Publicly Available Software"</a>.</li>
  100. <li>And if you have not yet read Ron Amadeo's article <a
  101. href="http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2013/10/googles-iron-grip-on-android-controlling-open-source-by-any-means-necessary/">"Google's
  102. iron grip on Android"</a>, you should do so and discuss it on <a
  103. href="https://lists.fsfe.org/mailman/listinfo/android">our mailing list</a>.
  104. The article explains current developments in Android such as possible new
  105. dependencies on non-free software.</li>
  106. <li>From the <a href="http://planet.fsfe.org">planet aggregation</a>: </li>
  107. <ul>
  108. <li>Hugo Roy asks himself <a
  109. href="http://hroy.eu/posts/facebook_open-source_company/">why Facebook
  110. should be considered an "Open Source company"</a>, explains <a
  111. href="http://hroy.eu/posts/setup_mozilla-sync/">how to set up Firefox
  112. sync</a> and documented some of your editor's favourite hacks, like <a
  113. href="http://hroy.eu/tips/vim/email-delete-til-signature/">how to delete
  114. text from the current position to your e-mail signature</a> and <a
  115. href="http://hroy.eu/tips/vim/itsalltext/">how to work effectively with
  116. text input fields in your browser</a>.</li>
  117. <li>Otto Kekäläinen <a
  118. href="http://seravo.fi/2013/past-present-future-valo-cd">wrote about the
  119. past and present of the VALO-CD</a>, a project making it as easy as possible
  120. for any average home of office user to start using Free Software, and the
  121. possible future which might be the LibreKey.</li>
  122. <li>What makes Open Data succeed, and how does it fail? Carsten Agger, our
  123. local group coordinator for Aahrus/Denmark, <a
  124. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/agger/2013/10/05/open-data-how-to-make-it-succeed-how-to-make-it-fail/">
  125. provides a transcript from his talk about these questions</a>.</li>
  126. <li>Jonas Öberg <a
  127. href="http://jonasoberg.net/post/63665105097/with-fuelingthefuture-the-linux-foundation-asks">remembers
  128. how he started with Free Software</a>.</li>
  129. <li>Daniel Pocock wrote about <a
  130. href="http://danielpocock.com/debian-outreach-program-for-women-2013">Debian's
  131. outreach program for women</a> and the <a
  132. href="http://danielpocock.com/final-report-gsoc-2013-projects">GSoC 2013
  133. projects</a>.</li>
  134. <li>Nikos Roussos participated at the <a
  135. href="http://www.roussos.cc/2013/10/30/mozilla-growing-community-and-reps">Mozilla
  136. Summit</a> and explains <a
  137. href="http://www.roussos.cc/2013/10/20/kickstarting-a-static-website-emberjs-handlebarsjs">how
  138. to kickstart a static website with ember.js and handlebars.js</a>.</li>
  139. <li>If you want to set up a pirate box, <a
  140. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/t.kandler/2013/09/27/piratebox-some-tipps/">Thomas
  141. Kandler explains this in his article</a>.</li>
  142. <li>Our new intern Max Mehl looked into <a
  143. href="http://blog.max-mehl.com/2013/organising-micro-task-emails-in-thunderbird/">organising
  144. micro task emails in Thunderbird</a>, </li>
  145. <li>and Lucile Falgueyrac summarised <a href="
  146. https://blogs.fsfe.org/lucile.falg/2013/10/23/pre-printing-work/">how to
  147. do pre-printing work</a>.</li>
  148. <li>Beside the planet covered topics like <a
  149. href="http://commonsmachinery.se/2013/10/implementing-user-friendly-default-settings/">implementing
  150. user-friendly default settings</a>, <a
  151. href="https://blogs.fsfe.org/samtuke/?p=644">fixing Fedora 19's "unlockable
  152. lockscreen" bug</a>, and an <a
  153. href="http://bergie.iki.fi/blog/noflo-update/">update from the NoFlo
  154. world</a>.</li>
  155. </ul>
  156. </ul>
  157. <h2>Get active: They don't want you to - but what do you want?</h2>
  158. <p>As explained above we do not want people to accept all the restrictions on
  159. our devices. To gain more transparency we want an easy way to inform a wider
  160. audience about those restrictions, and especially give younger people a way to
  161. show that they do not agree with it. On the 4th of November we go live with <a
  162. href="http://theydontwantyou.to">TheyDontWantYou.To</a> and together with our
  163. partner organisations we start distributing short microblog messages,
  164. highlighting different restrictions using the #theydontwantyouto hashtag.</p>
  165. <p>Help us to distribute the messages, send the messages to your friends, write
  166. about them in your blog, <a
  167. href="https://fsfe.org/contribute/spreadtheword.en.html#tdwyt">use our stickers
  168. </a> to raise awareness, and to let us know about restrictions you encounter in
  169. your daily life.</p>
  170. <p>Thanks to all the <a href="/fellowship/join">Fellows</a> and
  171. <a href="/donate/thankgnus.html">donors</a> who enable our work,<br/>
  172. <a href="/about/kirschner">Matthias Kirschner </a> - <a href="http://www.fsfe.org">FSFE</a></p>
  173. <p>-- <br />
  174. <a href="/index.html">Free Software Foundation Europe</a><br />
  175. <a href="/news/news.rss">FSFE News</a><br />
  176. <a href="/events/events.rss">Upcoming FSFE Events</a><br />
  177. <a href="http://planet.fsfe.org/en/rss20.xml">Fellowship Blog Aggregation</a><br />
  178. <a href="/contact/community.html">Free Software Discussions</a> </p>
  179. </body>
  180. <tags>
  181. <tag>newsletter</tag>
  182. <tag>Matthias Kirschner</tag>
  183. </tags>
  184. <timestamp>$Date: 2011-06-06 12:32:19 +0200 (Mon, 06 Jun 2011) $ $Author: mk $</timestamp>
  185. </html>
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