Meme War : Software Industrial Complex vs Free as in Freedom
Orginally posted to Groklaw :
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, November 06 2006 @ 04:22 PM EST Pam, you write :
"I'm very sad about Novell. Whatever they thought they were doing, they are
now Microsoft's FUD puppy, and contractually they will be having to repeat
Microsoft's FUD with every deal, I think. Every time they tell a prospect that
they have a patent peace with Microsoft, they are implying that one needs one,
and the damage to Linux's good name is obvious right there."
Let us take that statement, replace Novell with Mono, and Linux with DOTGNU.
If you reread the sentance, you will see this entire pattern has occured before.
Then we add to the idea chain here :
MS - ximian(mono) - Novel - Suse
Bang, we see the strong connection between ximian and microsoft has taken place,
and how the huge fight between the two occured. The industry backed mono with
book contracts. You see how contractual agreements underline now what was before
just a underlying disturbance in the force.
How long has this disturbance in the force been there? I think for much longer.
Something is deeply, darkly wrong at Novell and Microsoft. They are part of the
SIC. The software industrial complex.
Pam also continues to question the timing of this thought:
"How could Novell not see that? Is it too late to nix this devilish
The devilish idea could have very well happened much earlier, even before when
the midnight commanders author decided to throw the gpl overboard on the mono
projects classlibs and break away from working with the gnu dotgnu p/net
It has been said ximian has very good relations with Microsoft for a long time.
It has only been to their benefit, except for the disturbances in the free
software community. Hurt feelings are not something that corporations need to
care about really. People are hurt all the time, it is just business, nothing
personal. What does Freedom matter anyway? Much better we just take it away from
the user, so they cannot leave. that is what businesses need: stable, and
non-free workers bound by all sorts of contracts, visible and invisible. I have
worked inside the SIC for years, and can tell you that It loves microsoft
Microsoft has been creating many good relations with developers, and turning
them away from free software for years. But that is just business.
I was also a microsoft junkie, until linus brought me GNU! It was not the FSF
that got me GNU.
Some of the reasearchs at microsoft all use Open Source, GNU and BSD tools,
because they are the best, you can find references to that on the research pages
at microsoft. Microsoft has also restributed perl for years and other tools. I
remember even seeing xenix from microsoft at radio shack in the 80s.
Intel is also trying to get into the linux software business after downturns on
windows also affected thier sales. It is the nature of the market that they are
all tied together in a massive web of interdependancies that define the
Now what if Intel would finally find itself needing to develop its own version
of linux that is optimized for its chip? What about a linux on the chip, burnt
right in an optimized out. A linux chip.
Think about what would happen if your chip contained the ability to compile new
highly optimized programs, a compiler itself. Take the gcc and turn it into a
Imagine to be able to create even new computer chips, or rewire them using nano
robots. A fab chip that contains an entire IC FAB on a chip itself. with
nanobots working on it to produce new chips inside it.
All these new technolgies can be implemented open source tools. Of course to
produce such chips you need to be the most advanced manufacturer on the planet,
but you will still need software. Why not let the people own the software?
Open Source software is Adaptive software.
It has a high viability because it copies itself freely consuming all available
space. It tends to consume software developers completely until they turn into
memiods of a given software defending it to death. That is the true greatness of
Free Software, it is the great minds that have been attracted to it. It is the
ability to see them interact an watch how they think, how the software grows. Of
course we see that at in the SIC as well. But you dont get to see the sources,
or have time to understand things most of the time when you work inside the
What if the rate of change in the software would reflect some type of metric, we
would watch the rate of change of open source versus closed source.
In companies, the rate of change in the source is defined by the contractual
flow of money to the software engineering process that delivers to requirement.
Things dont change for years and each line of software is so expensive that
there better be a good reason to change it.
In free software, the rate of change in the source is defined by the meme
strength of the software to copy itself onto a developer, who then ebodies and
carries it. See the Egotistical Meme from Dawkins for more about memes.
Now we can apply some dawkins game theory here :
We will see many creative people developing new creative ideas, so, there is a
chance that the meme will mutate into something new and exciting. Lets call them
Yet not all play for the gain of all. We look at predators. How many of them
will turn against the meme and go against it. Someone like me, growing up as a
Microsoft memiods turning into Free as in freedom GNU/linux memiods. Or someone
who grew up in Freedom turning against it ie: Ximian.
The population of the software development market is attacked by waves and waves
of memes searching for hosts. Each one hopes to capture a developer working on
it. Each one has some scheme.
The closed system scheme is built around a soft landing. Microsoft software
development tricks you with wizards that hold up the light for you to walk in
the dark, but lead you down the path into complete dependancy. It is a warm and
The Free Software movement confronts you with someone who is not getting any
good press. In fact the newspapers seem to go out of thier way to not talk about
free as in freedom at all. I almost choked the other day when the FAZ was
talking about creative commons and the wikipedia. The capitalistic press just
cannot handle GNU.
they find the idea of Free as in Freedom distasteful, I think. It must have
something to do with the word Manifesto.
Most industrial companies feel the need to control the freedom of thier workers.
Maybe they have to do as well, and there is the real core of the problem.
Lets view the world from that of an egotistical meme that has an army of
memiods. Lets call this meme "SIC" (the software industrial complex)
we can define it by a simple set of rules :
1- Those who have must protect it from those who dont.
2- Those who dont must have a problem, so we sure should not help them, they
3. What better way to protect your own, when you can just disable the
competition with FUD.
4. Capture the mind of the mentally weak, fill them with ideas, make they want
to buy our bugs.
5. The stronger ones we will give them real benefits to control the weaker with
6. Create a hierarchy of FUD that trickles down to the office level and floods
the minds of the workers.
Now, let me tell you the real cost of msoffice to the SIC, it is the cost of
training slow neurons. No one wants to do it. They might start a riot.
What is software all about for the SIC anyway? Its need OFFICE for the sheer
cost of brainwashing and retraining all those neurons! And to think that the SIC
has been investing in these software memetic brandings for a long time! It is
alot of energy invested into, so it must have some purpose.
Just look at the cost in calories it would take to retrain the nation to use
open office!! What a waste of resources, we should let them have office.
give the people the ability to learn linux. that goes against the entire idea of
a empire of SIC.
Seriously folks, lets spend those resources on something worthwhile, like giving
internet connections and computing power to the third world. Let's teach the
world to sing in perfect harmony! Lets set a sample for future generations and
share with them what we know. Why not let them see how we developed software?
Why not share with them something we have worked hard on?
How many of us are willing and able to put work into becoming the perfect free
software memiod? Who is willing to make that sacrifice of time and resources.
Do we not need freedom to have freedom? If we dont have a computer, then we
cannot enjoy GNU. If we never learn to read we cannot program GNU. GNU needs
young minds to copy itself onto. Fresh neurons. We should invest more into the
third world software development. but how can you invest without money? No
money, no calories for neuron imprinting.
Anyway, enough for tonight.
I have found a nice page that gives more information Softpanormas Stallmans Page:
Donations pay for expenses, not ailing kids' dreams) are applicable to FSF. Moreover additional question about possible conflict of interests is perfectly applicable too. It looks like FSF accepted generous donations from Eazel. At the same time outspoken Eazel's co-founder, Miguel de Icaza sits on the board of directors of the Free Software Foundation. At this point RMS words "Go Get 'em, gnomes!" appear to have a quite different, more troubling meaning. As Denis Powell noted in his paper Wanna Invest in a Bridge Okay, How About a Donation :
Here the linux planet note about Ximian/FSF
...Because, you see, it seems as if not all information wants to be free. The financial records of the Free Software Foundation, for instance. I've repeatedly requested them, and those requests have gone unanswered. It is a peculiar irony that I can easily learn far more about the financial dealings of Microsoft Corp., than I can about the Free Software Foundation, where information wants to be free so long as it's other people's information.
I am not alleging impropriety here. It could be that it's all mere coincidence. But it is absolutely undeniable that the FSF has thrown its support behind a desktop controlled by two for-profit companies, one of which has an officer who sits on the FSF's board; the same company has purchased advertising aimed at confounding those who are seeking a desktop that is truly free in every rational sense of the word; and the other company has suggested that users can assist its product in surviving but help it avoid paying its bills by donating to the Free Software Foundation, or else an officer of that company has flung down and danced upon his fiduciary responsibilities by saying, in a communication that is part of his corporate function, that people might want to send money to the FSF instead of the company. And they all do it, evangelists as they are for "free" software, with a holier-than-thou air.