Month: April 2004

DebConf4 Confirmation Announcement and Several Reports

Posted by – 27/04/2004

[Originally posted to Debian-Devel-Announce ]

Confirmation Period

The time for DebConf4 is coming. Less than a month to begin the fifthedition of the Debian Conference.

The registration period is almost over. Everybody that has registered should be receiving, in the next moments, a confirmation email. By receiving this email you are NOT yet confirmed. You should enter the URL pointed to by that email to update your data and confirm your registration. Please! Note that unconfirmed registrations will not be validated.

The confirmation period starts now and goes until May 3nd. If you haven’t received any emails asking for confirmation (or have lost yours), please, enter the following URL:

http://www.debconf.org/debconf4/register/

… and select the “Confirm your registration” option.

After we have collected the confirmation data, we’ll send another round of emails (and we’ll publish new data on our website) with important information for confirmed attendees.

Hosting before and after the Conference

During the conference, for the first 150 people that registered (and confirmed) the hosting is sponsored, as promised before , favoring DDs.

SESC, the DebConf4 place, is a hotel. They more than welcome people wanting to stay there before May 26th or after June 2nd. They have special not-yet-calculated fees for DebConf4 attendees. If you wish to stay at SESC before or after DebConf4 (as vacation or to attend International Free Software Forum), please, register your arrival and departures date in the registration form and we’ll negotiate the best fee with them (should be under R$ 30.00 – US$ 10.00 a day per person, breakfast included for the 4-people room). You will be warned by the Confirmation System if you have chosen arrival and/or departure dates before May 26th or after June 2nd, just in case you have chosen those by mistake.

Please, note that you will need to pay separately for supplies consumed from your room’s minibar, as these are not included within your room rate.

Lunch and Dinner

We have a specially prepared menu (with vegetarian options) at SESC restaurant. We’ve used data from the registration form (please update yours) to print lunch or dinner tickets for attendees. Each attendee will receive, along with the badge, their amount of tickets on Day One and are fully responsible for them (you will be on your own if you loose yours).

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We’ve thought of attaching a string to allow people to carry their tickets around the neck during the conference… but then we gave up the idea as people may confuse it with mardi-grass-like customs.

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We will have the menu on our website RSN, including descriptions of ingredients used to prepare the food.

Talk Schedule

I’d like to thank everybody that have submitted papers. We’re still reviewing and confirming some of them so we can publish it and expect the less modifications possible. In time, everything ill go, as usual, announced on d-d-a and will also be on our website.

5th International Free Software Forum

Since a lot of questions were raised about IFSF (or FISL in portuguese), here is a summary already posted to our mailing-list (and kind of updated here):

IFSF is an international gathering to discuss FLOSS. Last year it were attended by over 4-thousand people and had over 300 lectures. No advertising lectures are allowed. This year they will have 7 rooms: one for 1,5 thousand people (with simultaneous translation to and from english and spanish), 4 other rooms for 250 people each, a 350 people room also with simultaneous translation, and one reserved for the academic workshop. (a side event). Some pictures of last year’s event can still be found at Wichert’s webpage , and a description at Bdale’s .

They also have a reserved area for user groups. Debian is the most active user group present every year (many of us also belong to the organizing committee).

The IFSF take place from 3rd to 5th june. This year it is preceded by a pre-forum on the 2nd which is intended to be a networking event.

We are negotiating to have lower fees for debconf4 attendees. Anyway, it is a cheap event (everything is mainly supported by sponsors) with US$ 20 tops you can make the whole event.

Sponsors

We’re kindly sponsored, so far, by the following amazing companies:

  • HP
  • PSL-RS
  • Linspire (former Lindows)
  • O’Reilly
  • XandrOS
  • 4Linux
  • Cisco Systems

That’s all folks… See you at DebConf4.

Edgar Villanueva will be in 5th IFSF

Posted by – 24/04/2004

In conformance with this universally accepted principle, the citizen has the right to know all information held by the State […] software deals with information and is itself information. Information in a special form, capable of being interpreted by a machine in order to execute actions, but crucial information all the same because the citizen has a legitimate right to know, for example, how his vote is computed or his taxes calculated. And for that he must have free access to the source code and be able to prove to his satisfaction the programs used for electoral computations or calculation of his taxes.

The author of this letter answering Microsoft with regard to a law enforcing Free Software in Public Administration is Edgar Villanueva, a congressman in Peru.

For me this guy is a hero. He is defending Free Software not because of its gratuity, but because of national security! I have long wished to meet him and now I’ll have my chance: he will be present at 5th IFSF [pt_BR]. Being a portuguese-speaker, I just wish they put his talk in one of those simultaneous-translation-enabled rooms because I am afraid I’ll not be able to understand spanish. They will be translating into english as well, so I’ve been informed…

Intellectual Property moves toward a feudal system

Posted by – 05/04/2004

I just read the most interesting ebook I read this year: Free Culture, by Lawrence Lessig.

It can be downloaded from “Amazon”: http://images.amazon.com/images/G/media/i3d/01/freeculture.pdf

I will just transcribe one of the more important (IMHO) paragraphs:

“There is a history of just such a property system that is well known in the Anglo-American tradition. It is called ‘feudalism.’ Under feudalism, not only was property held by a relatively small number of individuals and entities. And not only were the rights that ran with that property powerful and extensive. But the feudal system had a strong interest in assuring that property holders within that system not weaken feudalism by liberating people or property within their control to the free market. Feudalism depended upon maximum control and concentration. It fought any freedom that might interfere with that control.”

“As Peter Drahos and John Braithwaite relate, this is precisely the choice we are now making about intellectual property. We will have an information society. That much is certain. Our only choice now is whether that information society will be free or feudal. The trend is toward the feudal.”

I’ve never had it put that way! I’ve always felt that the government should let the market free, but interfere when something too bad happens. Now I extended that by adding that the government should, also, protect the market from turning itself into a disguised feudalism…

More at Free Culture website

Leaving everything for a XP based install

Posted by – 01/04/2004

I am here to announce I’ll be leaving Debian today. Not only Debian, I’ll no further participate in DebConf4 organization team or International Free Software Forum committee. I’ve just sold for $1 my participation in Propus, the FLOSS company I started (actually I paid someone $1 to keep my share and erase my name of the company history). Finally, as president of the Debian-RS user group, I hereby declare it dissolved. It will no longer exists (and I’ll redirect every hit it gets to a webpage I am preparing with FrontPage™ with this text).

What happened? I became iluminated! I just had a vision: Microsoft Windows XP is the only true way into computing. Microsoft’s now well known Get the Facts rule-book just spoke to me! I understood that ignorance is a gift and I chose not to spend another single second learning. What’s the point anyway? Isn’t it what Microsoft is already doing for me? Why worry then?

Also, I told all my friends to stop pissing me off asking me questions of some so-called penguin-operating-system or another thing with a horned head symbol . I, from now on, have nothing to do with it? For all of the ones that asked me anything about it I just answer: “Why would you learn anything new? Microsoft will provide us. Trust’em!”

Alright! I am not telling you the whole truth. I am learning something! ASP.NET and VB.NET. I’ve just left Ruby , C++, and PHP . It was too much freedom for me to handle (I completely agree with Dr. Schwartz )! Just the mere concept of being able to ask Matz to include something in Ruby and being heard scares me to death now!

So why am I learning ASP.NET and VB.NET? First of all, it’s everything there (if it’s not, Microsoft will provide us without me having to ask!). Second, I want to help Microsoft to grow even more! I want everybody to share the same benefits I have… even though I had to pay hundreds to use it (for the first year only)… it’s worth every penny!

I am done! After eight years of foolish beliefs and odd-licensed programming (everything that is licensed under BSD-like, GPL, DSL, or any other OSI-approved license is just plain odd), I am just done! I’ll develop my own version of EULA that enforces my rights to use other people’s free work in my own works and charge for it. In fact, I really think that Einstein should have done just that with Relativity… what if little kids would have to pay to learn it??

That’s it! This should be my last post in this blog! I’ll be back here when I converted everything from PHP/MySQL to ASP.NET/MSSQL.

Be like me (and Cipher)! Take the path back to the matrix! That steak tastes so good…

Happy April Fool’s Day!