[linux-elitists] Ten Reasons- final draft

Brooklyn Linux Solutions CEO ruben@mrbrklyn.com
Tue May 8 08:29:27 PDT 2001

<<Disney doesn't write fables, it appropriates public domain materials
then extends copyright duration fivefold to protect its sacred profits.>>

It is interesting that you point that out.  I noitced this and changed that
sentence at some point, but it seems to have failed to make it to this
revision somehow....

This Paragraph has gotten screwed up.  It was written one way which I
thought was too wordy, and now it's a compeltely ineffective hybred.

> However, the benefactors and leaders of Linus's vision, need to come to
> grips with the essential truth that the conditions upon which Helsinki
> Miracle was dependent are threatened today. 

 If any of these needed conditions did not exist in the early 1990's, it
would have prevented the development of Linux.  The  three essential
conditions which converged in the summer of 1991 were political freedom,
technological maturity, and economic
opportunity. In 1991, all three of these things nicely converged to
produce Linus and Linux.

----is that better?

<<Well.  Compaq established this, IIRC, through legal battles.  But they
did set the precedent for cleanroom reëngineering.>>

Do you have an anotation of tis for me?  I like to anotate the article.

<<Was the underlying architecture of the PC that critical to the design of

I can't see how they could have produced a kernel without Diver and CPU
specs which
were openly available.

<<I'm not sure I'm buying this line (about economic conditions).>> 

<<Also, if Linus *had* been sufficiently wealthy, he'd
have been able to afford:

  - A more powerful PC that could have run DOS / Legacy MS Windows
    properly (suitably qualified).

  - A true Unix system.

...or another form of satisficing that would have relieved the itch he'd
felt.  >>

OK - on economics, in 1980, when I graduated high school, Reagan lifted all
student aid.  I cane from a VERY poor family.  My mother had a number of
medical problems leading to her death at the age of 43.  As an independent
student living on my own, I went hungry (at the tender age of 16) and by 17
was nearly homeless.  By 17 1/2 I was a full fledged member of the US Army
and didn't graduate college until 1989 - a few years late.  And my choice
of education was necessarily very practicle...I became a pharmacist.

Later when I went to Graduate School, the entire school was foriegn born
students.  They were the only students who could afford to go to the

There has to be enough of an economic foundation to allow for education
(and computing).  This is not available everywhere and to everyone all the
time.  Linux, BTW, greatly improves the chances of broad computer
education...which is itself a reason to protect it from intrussion by Fair
Use restrictions.

> ***He was in an environment which could afford to freely offer
> copyrighted information.***

Explain and expand.

Do you think I really need to.  It's one of the main points.  I thought I
explained this point well.

<<True to an extent, however there was self publishing, pamphleting,
underground 'zines, xeroxed treatises, samizdat in the Soviet Bloc....
The Xerox machine did as much to topple the Soviet Union as did SDI, and
at a far greater ROI.>>

Pamphlets are not imediate and international in scope.

BTW -as a digression, pamphlets didn't topple the USSR, forced over
spending by a military arms race they couldn't afford, along side the Wests
devestating display of force in Iraq...that is what toppled the USSR.

<<  - Public speaking, particularly the Free Speech movement of the late

Never heard of this until I saw in on the net a few weeks ago...it had
minimal impact, as seen by the war continueing on and on and on...

<<  In an urban area it can hit
a large audience. >>

But not in greece and it takes a decent amount of specialized knowledge,
and to my understanding is against the law, and doesn't who hypertext.

<<Indies produce movies on budgets of a few tens of thousands of dollars.
Not dirt cheap (and this can be done for less), but attainable.>>

Not really practicle for Mom while cooking.  Email, however, is.

<<  The
real costs are in distribution.>>

Yes Yes - that as well.

<<"Content is not king".  You may enjoy picking through:



> A new dawn for mankind is stretching across the horizon.  And if our
> new technology will continue to be a tool in enabling mankind or a
> tool to shackle us is very much in question.  

<<The answer is yes.>>

As in - Yes - Both

<<The _very_ core?  Can't we just be at the core?>>

Not in the middle of the very core - smack in the center of a the eye of an
oncoming Huraciane, sorounded on all sides by evil forces with evil intent!

> ownership of information.  Exploration and reverse engineering is
> today a felony.

<<In limited contexts, yet untested in the court (DMCA
anti-circumvention).  More pointedly, Connectix has won a pretty
decisive round of lawsuits against Sony in the past twelve months
securing the right to reverse engineer software and hardware.>>

If the DMCA is allowed to be interpreted strictly, it is a felony.

> It's a common falsehood that innovation is completely new and
> unrelated to previous works.  

<<I'd put it differently "There's a commonly held misconception that
technological change is revolutionary.  It's not, it's evolutionary.">>

I might add this.  But this is not just true of Technology.  It's true of
human civilization.

<<Cute story.  Stallman's copyright dystopia "The Right to Read" is
another good example.  It's already sounding one hell of a lot less
fantstic than it did four years ago:


Yes - I was in the front of the Vital Books problem.  My expereince with
that makes me write this.  We spend too much time talking about the issues
and not enough doing something about it.

Brooklyn Linux Solutions


More information about the linux-elitists mailing list