Tags: free software, GNU, Linux, software, UNIX
People are wrong when they say GNU (FSF) is just a collection of free softwares, GNU is a way of life. This way of life transcends itself from software profession into one’s personal and social life too. The truth is not that when people come in the GNU community then they become good, that they become the ones who think of society first instead like others who think of their selfish business interests based on the proprietary softwares.
The actual truth is GNU is a place which attracts people who work in the favor of the society, in the interest of humanity. GNU is nothing less than unicef , helping both kids and mature people who have a common interest in making technology better so that that technology can be used to put humanity on the forefront of innovations. When GNU was founded it gave a platform to all the people who were working on different places all across the different nations, to come under one umbrella, the Free Software Movement.
For me, GNU worked liked Red Cross. I have worked for 5 years with Windows, 3 years in college plus 2 more years at home and when today I compare my learning in Windows with just 2 years of working with Linux I see, I am much more of a man with common-sense about software. Windows is an Operating System which kills your senses, and so are all the other proprietary Operating Systems. They kill your senses. It is like you purchased a Motor Cycle and you don’t know where are its spark plug and Petrol Tank. When it stops working, you go to the Manufacturer and he charges you $100 and then tells you that your Petrol Tanks is empty, please fill it and then it will work. It is exactly same in the case of support from Proprietary Softwares. GNU gives you the complete Motor Cycle like as it exists today, you can see where is the engine, where is the spark plug and when trouble happens, you can open them and look for the solution. You can think of the fully-covered machines and then can imagine where our development have been gone if it was like that. The technology must remain open for everyone to study , so that they can spend their time on understanding problems and offering solutions. This is what exactly Free Software community does and I think this is what exactly GNU does. Making money and keeping technology patented are two very-very different things. Corporations are making money on both GSM and CDMA technologies while GSM is open and CDMA is patented. In fact, 82% of the Mobile market is owned by GSM, an open standard. I don’t understand why companies making proprietary software get so baffled when someone talks about Free Software in front of them. For becoming the leader of the market and #1 in business, your competitors need to go out of business. You do that by solving some problems which are unsolved yet, by changing your way of doing business, by offering some service to your customers, services that seem very simple and general but never done, by looking at the domains that are not understood by pointy-haired bosses. Google did that same, it solved the problem of searching, it solved some problems of e-mail. If you will look at the history of corporate you will find many examples conforming my viewpoint.
Business means making money, by either hook or crook. Unfortunately, general public does not want to understand this, an average man avoids an understanding of his surroundings all the time. He spends 30 years in his job, yet never tries to understand why he is there doing his boring job. He never asks himself what will happen to the company if no one does his kind of job. He never tries to understand his place or the place of his seniors in the company. If one tries to do so, he will get fed up by the so less power he gets in his current job, he will get impatient by thinking if his job and comparing it with what he can do, what he could have accomplished in last 5 years. Many people are afraid of doing business in first place, that fear is nothing, the fear of loosing is just plain nonsense because if you don’t get any risks, if you don’t have any insecurity, you won’t get anything worthwhile (e.g. having 10 million dollars in your bank account is one worthwhile thing, while the other worthwhile thing from my view point is I can buy nutritious food and make my body strong) . One can also make money by not harming the society. One can make money by making the society, the surroundings a better place to live. There is no need and there is no point in using political tactics to gain power in business. It is like that we have create a different type of business-model while keeping it more-profitable than current models. Besides that when one works in interest of his people, he will not know, how many people will be helping him. There will be communities working day and night to support such a business. One of those organizations is GNU.
GNU is not only about software. Its about making lives better. The people from the Free Software Community are not the onle ones who can become great Hackers (a.k.a great programmers), they are also the ones who can become great politicians, innovative businessmen and global leaders. I know most readers will not understand that. GNU uses software as a primary way to express itself. How do you express yourself ? GNU is about living for a cause, GNU is about Freedom, GNU is a about living your life the way you want, the way you truly are, not the way some boss thinks you are. GNU is the way of life, GNU is inside you, GNU is a mirror all you see in GNU is just own reflection. GNU is not only about software, its about Freedom of your inner self from all the chains. GNU just hands you a tool that sets you free. GNU is a way of life.
Copyright © 2008, Arnuld Uttre, #331/type-2/sector-1, Naya Nangal, Distt. – Ropar, Punjab (INDIA) – 140126
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