On Google and censorship

Update: the decision has been entirely reversed on appeal http://news.yahoo.com/google-executives-acquitted-milan-autism-video-case-124736237--sector.html

Hugo Roy asked my thoughts about the recent case of Google's employees being convicted in Italy for a video that has been online a few months on Google Video (now YouTube).

FSFE to users: Seize your freedom of choice!

With today's press release, FSFE cheers the advent of the browser choice ballot screen, a facility that would notify users that Freedom is within reach. Windows (TM) users will be presented with a graphic interface within MS Internet Explorer whereby they can choose to install an additional web browser, including the most successful and innovative Free Software one, Mozilla Firefox

On URL Shorteners

URL shorteners are "cloud" services that do basically one thing: they take a long URL (such a web address) and transform it into a short one. They became popular with the explosion of microblogging facilities like Twitter, Identi.ca, Facebook et al.

SFScon 2009


The programme of the SFScon 2009 has been published.

South Tyrol Free Software Conference 2009

The SFScon of the 13th November 2009 -  the South Tyrol Free Software Conference - is an International Conference on Free Software, which is held annually in South Tyrol. This years topic of the SFScon is: "Free Software: For Innovative Business!".

Send the GNU GPL to the Amazonia

Amazon's announcement that it is launching cloud-based MySQL services come at a convenient time. It shows how money to support Free Software development can come from unexpected sources, and without a proprietary license appearing anywhere in the picture.

This is not really good news for Free Software. However, Amazon gives us the best evidence that MySQL can be "monetized" by offering it in a Software As a Service setting. This can happen with GNU GPL licensed software and without receiving any special permission from the copyright holder, contradicting all claims that there is no viable way to fund development of a Free Software project without a dual license. The impatient reader can jump directly to the section where I deal with the cloud, but I invite you to follow all the argument.

Apache what?

Sometimes I wonder who the worst enemies of Free Software are. And it occurs me that sometimes the worst enemies are ourselves, the proponents of it (or self-described as such).

The same thought struck me yesterday reading a press release calling for Mysql to be sold to a third party, separate from the prospect buyer of Sun Microsystem, Oracle. It says: