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Re: Practicality of GNU project and libre movement

From: jinnjus
Subject: Re: Practicality of GNU project and libre movement
Date: Fri, 24 Jul 2020 15:54:44 +0000

Hi All,

> Debian famously has too much money already and no idea what to spend it on.

Debian should spend that money on trauma counseling for anyone involved in the 
systemd debate.

> I'm not saying there's nothing we could do with money, but what should we do
> with money? Buy ad campaigns? Hire designers and product managers to help
> create forks of popular projects that need polish? Fund existing full-timers
> who create things we already use and need but who just scrape by (if that)?
> Find people who wish to go full time and pay them to do that on their existing
> project? Which projects?

Perhaps ad campaigns, yes.  We are controlled by advertising companies right 
now and we need to Marshall McLuhan style get people to wake up and realize 
maybe we *don't* want to hand our lives over to Google and Facebook.  That's a 
social concern above and beyond free software.  Do we even want social media?  
There is a movement that all government software spending should be on FLOSS; 
why shouldn't government be developing and protecting our digital 
infrastructure according to the needs of it's citizens instead of the needs of 
advertising companies and corporate profit legal obligations?  Get that message 
out once and for all in a way that is convincing and can't be argued with.  Our 
digital infrastructure does not need to be product-ified and upgraded 
periodically according to Moore's just needs to function.

> Ok, I'm rambling too much, let's focus on the question at hand: if you had $2M
> right now to use on furthering the cause of free software, what should be done
> with it?

If I had two million dollars I would fund a dead simple Free operating system 
for kids to play with in schools.  Not just "free" because the code is 
available, but freely accessible because it is dead freaking simple.  Drop the 
Linux kernel and replace it with Minix.  Drop Gnome and replace it with Openbox 
or something even simpler like JWM.  DON'T make everything GUI configurable. DO 
MAKE kids alter text configuration files and instill in them the Unix 
philosophy of do one thing and do it well.  Then...force the government to use 
it.  In Canada I can do this with the legal system...not sure about elsewhere.

I think the funding debate is a moot point that should eventually lose 
relevance.  We don't need products.  We need a society that functions according 
to the interests of it's citizens and I don't see that the commercial interests 
that have taken over tech (and our society at large as a result) as being able 
to deliver that.  They by definition can't because they are profit driven by 

We need a Star Trek social system where living needs are met and personal 
development is the goal rather than greed and profit.  THAT is where GNU and 
Free Software are sitting.  It is the doorway.  Let's get to work and stop 
worrying about where the money is and who is going to profit.

My two cents on two million dollars.

Kindest Regards,


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