Free software is the first battle for the liberation of cyberspace. Who controls your computer? You, or the big societies, that really control it? What is a computer? A computer is a universal machine. Perform any calculation you want for you because you give him a program that tells him what calculation do you want. The computer only knows how to find an instruction and fulfill it, receive another instruction and perform it. The program has instructions, tells you what to do. By writing the relevant program, you can make it do whatever you want.
Almost everything. Who gives instructions to your computer? You may think that he obeys your instructions when he actually obeys someone else first, while obeying you as much as that society allows. With software, there are two options: Either the users control the program, or the program controls the users.
One, the other. For users to control the program, they need the four fundamental freedoms. This is the definition of free software. Free software respects the freedom and community of users. We often call it “Libre”, using the French or Spanish word. Speak it as you like, the idea is that this is what we mean. We’re not saying it’s free, we’re not talking about the price. We worry about your freedom, and, on occasion, say “Free / Libre”, to show this. Zero freedom is the freedom to run the program whatever you want, for whatever purpose.
Freedom one is the freedom to study the source code of the program and change it to make the calculations you want to make. What is the source code? Usually each program comes in two forms. One forms you can read and understand, if you know the programming language. This is the source. This is what programmers write and edit. Then there is the executable, a whole number that even the programmer can’t start.
If you have only the executable, it’s a terrible job to figure out what it’s doing, and even harder to change. So to really give you the opportunity to study and change, should give you the source code. This is a must. With these two freedoms, every user can make a copy of his own and start changing it, to make it do what it wants. This is individual control. What if you’re not a programmer? You see the source code, and you don’t understand it.
Individual control is not enough. We also need collective control, that is, users of any group are free to work together to customize the program to their liking. Of course, some in the group are programmers. It is these who actually write the changes, but they do so as part of the group for what the band wants.
Of course, not everyone should be in the group. Others may use it any other way. Everyone is free to do so. Collective control begs for two other essential freedoms. Freedom two is the freedom to distribute exact copies, to make copies and to forgive them or sold, if you will.
Freedom three is similar but applies to your modified versions. You are free to make copies, then pardon them or sell them when you like. If you enjoy these freedoms, then it’s free software, users control the program. But if one of these freedoms is missing, then the program is not controlled by the users. The program controls the users and the developer control the program.
So this means that this program is an instrument of unfair power of developers over users. This means that the user has no freedom, this is free, proprietary software that we need to get rid of. What happens when you get proprietary software? There are times when the program intercepts the user. There are times when it tracks the user. There are times when it restricts the user and prevents users from doing what they want.
You can see the blue ray is your enemy. [Laughter] There are times when software deletes books from afar as Amazon did with “1984”. There are times when developers entice users install a malicious update, threatening to deprive you of other features if they don’t, as Sony did. There are times when software can change without asking, at a distance as Microsoft can with Windows, through universal rear doors.
There are times when they even sabotage users, as Microsoft does when it tells the NSA about Windows flaws, so that it can use them for attacks against people’s computers. So basically, with proprietary software, the owner has power over the users, and benefit from this power, introducing such malicious functions into it to harm users. Of course, they do so not because they are sadistic; they do it simply for the money, out of greed. There are different ways to profit from this power over users, which doesn’t even make a single thread less wicked.
And they are not ashamed of it. They hold conferences where they talk about the newest ways possible to benefit users through the power they have. Basically, with proprietary software, which applies to almost all proprietary software users now, you use proprietary malware. Which means “software for greens”.
How to end being a victim? You used to have to stop using computers, but today, no more. Now you can join us in a free world we are building. In 1983, I announced that I would be drafting a completely free software operating system, called GNU. In 1992, we were almost done, but we were missing a part, the kernel. Linus Torvalds released his Linux kernel that year, who filled the last void, and gave us the first complete system you can run on a PC: GNU / Linux.
Sadly, having a moment of freedom does not guarantee its preservation. There are over a thousand different versions of GNU / Linux, called distribution. Few of them are completely free software; most of them have free software added, that they are maintained by people who do not care about freedom. Instead, they would add benefits, but at the expense of freedom.
So you need to check what the free distribution is. To preserve your freedom, sometimes a sacrifice is needed, sometimes a great sacrifice, as in Lexington. But during our campaign, the trend is for small sacrifices. Anyone with a bit of maturity can make these sacrifices. For example, you want apps, but some of them are not free.
Then the server does the calculations and returns the conclusions. What is not expected of you is to think what is going on, because it’s a cloud, and you don’t see what’s going on. But here you have to look. It’s a service instead of software and takes away from you the control over computer work.
A large part of the servants of the world run GNU / Linux and other free software. But I think the most important computers where freedom is rooted it’s your computers, not the corporate web servers. They too deserve to be free. But above all, it is the people who deserve freedom. So we need to move forward, and to do so, we need to overcome obstacles.
One of them is the fact that there are big companies that make a lot of money out of their user control. They don’t want to let us move on. We need to win over their backlash. Another is official media, which does not feel as free software. They have a term they use to bury these ethical problems. Talk about “open source” better. Now, it’s about the same programs, more or less, but with different ideas. When free software activists say, “The point is in the good and the bad.
Users deserve freedom. We demand freedom. ” Those who say “open source” don’t want to talk about such things. Instead they say, “Let users change the software and redistribute it, and will improve the code. Some flaws will fix them. ” It may be true, but it’s a secondary issue. If we want to preserve our freedom, we must talk about freedom. So say “free software” and so help us. Another drawback is the fact that many schools teach non-free software, which, in essence, is like teaching children to smoke.
It’s addictive, planting, which is the opposite of what schools should do. The school should prepare citizens to live in a free, strong, capable, independent and cooperative society, that is, free software teaching in schools. But there is another reason to do so in education. Some kids want to become programmers, they are curious. They want to know how programs work. Anyone who studies free software can understand, one who studies a non-free program cannot learn anything, because I knew in the non-free program kept hidden, denied to students.
So to protect the spirit of education, the school should ensure that its programs are free. But there is one more important reason: Schools must educate with a spirit of kindness, with the habit of helping other people. The class should say, “If you bring a program to class, just like when you bring cookies to class, you have to share them with everyone else.
You can’t just keep it to yourself. You must share the source code with others so that others can learn. So don’t bring proprietary software to this class. ” The school should set a good example by following its own rule: In the classroom you should bring only free software, remove cases for retroengineering exercises. Another drawback is that there is hardware we don’t know how to write free software, because we are not shown how to use the hardware.
This is shocking. They want to sell you the product, without showing you how to use it. You say, “Here’s a non-free program you can use. Shoot, and sew. Don’t bother us. ” How does retro-engineering reveal how to shoot that hardware? You have to study all those 0s and 1s to understand what they are really doing, and keep notes on how to use that hardware, so that someone can write the free program that does this.
Hard work but that can be done – if you want to give a great deal of technical assistance, this is what you need to do. Every area, new activity of life, can bring with it new human rights that are needed. Human rights depend on each other. If you lose one, it becomes more difficult to save others. So today, computer use is so important in society that free software freedoms are part of human rights, which society builds and protects. So how to help? You can write free software. You can organize campaign groups to persuade schools and governments to switch to open source software. You can help others with problems with using free software or help them install it.
You can say “free software” and spread philosophical ideas. Switching to free software is the first step to getting rid of cyberspace, but we know that we also use the Internet. We need more freedom there, such as net neutrality, and termination surveillance of people in general.
As found on Youtube