Creative GNU!  

Posted by Srikar







These snaps were taken by Pradeep when we were in kerala !We must really appreciate his creativity :)

note:click on the images for greater resolution.

IT@School - Kerala's successfull mission!  

Posted by Srikar

note:Click on images for better view :)

We were on an Industrial tour a few days back .We visited almost all the famous places in South India , Munnar remains my favourite.




More than the beauty of Munnar I was happy for one reason ; The freedom state 'Kerala' . By now you might have figured it out , yes it's the state where more than 2500 schools ,many colleges & organizations have got transformed to FREE(dom) software.Some of my friends & I were very curious to visit the schools there.

I rang Bhuvan (student coordinator FSF-AP) to ask if he could help us,he gave me contact details of Anvar Sadith(Executive director of IT@School ).I called Anwar sir that night , he gave me his appointment at 10.00 am the next day.

We were in Thiruvanthapuram then, we were new to the place.In the morning i rang Anvar sir to know the location of the Education department of Kerala.He spoke to us in a friendly manner ,that made us a lot comfortable.He gave us the route details in a clear manner .Shashank & I took an auto from our hotel.On the way we came across a central prison,it was really big and we were having communication problems with the auto driver as he was talking to us in Malayalam & Shashank was making fun out of our funny conversation with the auto driver.We only knew Telugu,Hindi and English.We were asking him about various places that came by , we managed to understand what he spoke.Finally we reached the Education department.

We met Anvar Sadith Sir ,he cleary explained us about the project IT@School .More than 2500 schools were using only GNU/Linux.He said
“It all started back in the year 2002 when IT@school mission was actually planned.In 2003 teachers were given computer training to empower them in IT.By the year 2006 many schools were completely transformed to GNU/Linux.Free software was taught to teachers by SPACE( Society For Promotion of Alternative Computing and Employment). By 2007 all the schools were stabilized with GNU/Linux and IT subject was made compulsory.New text books were created that taught school children free software tools.”





I was able to see his spirit and dedication behind this successful mission. Finally our conversation with Anvar sir was over.We asked him whether we could visit some schools nearby, he readily agreed.

We visited a girls school which had 5500 students studying there.We met the principal and spoke to her,luckily a master trainer was present in the Principals room.She took us to labs and we were very happy to see GNU and TUX residing in computer labs.We spoke to the students and teachers there.Jayashree Mam (one of the Master trainer) is an excellent trainer,we could see her skills while she was troubleshooting some of the GNU/LINUX systems.She was very friendly with us and gave us a clear idea about free software adoption in schools.








Difference between copyrights and patents.  

Posted by Srikar

I was not clear about this issue for a long time,most of the sites and wiki entries just end up in copying the definition of copyrights and patents from official sites(patent and copyright commissions).They don't try to convey the meaning to normal people with examples.So i decided to write on this issue.

&

Copyrights
A copyright protects original works that fall under the categories of literature, dramatic, musical, artistic, and intellectual property.

For example:-
If I write a book on "Imagination" and copyright it,no one has a right to copy my work but they can write another book on imagination in a different manner.A copyright protects a form of expression, but not the subject matter of the work.

Patents
A patent for an invention grants a property right to the inventor that will prevent anyone else from making, using, or selling an invention.

For example:-
If someone invents a technology(product or process) and patents it,it ensures anyone else from making a similar technology & using similar technology unless the inventor gives the right to do so.And lets us assume I invented the same technology next day , still i cant call it my invention as someone had patented it.

Lets us assume two groups namely A and B started working on telephone technology since 15 years(ex:CDMA ) and these A and B are no where related to each other and they live in different parts of the world.If A invents CDMA technology a day after B,he cant call it his invention as B had already patented it.So what happens to all the effort(15 years) made by A ?

This situation may or may not happen, but think of something where inventions are rapid as in a software industry.


Why Software patenting is bad??
In software industries(small scale or large scale) the inventions are rapid, every day a new algorithm or a process is developed ,patenting them is dangerous.

If our programming teacher asks us to develop a search algorithm ,many students come up with different ideas and they want to implement their own ideas and just imagine if all the search algorithms are patented by proprietary companies!!!

Many software industries are patenting very basic things to maintain their monopoly.
And this is the reason that makes me to go against apple and microsoft.These people(many proprietary companies) are responsible for killing innovation in software industry.

For in depth analysis just google or visit this site http://www.nosoftwarepatents.com/en

A simple difference between copyright and patent.
copyright says:- you can laugh ,but dont laugh like me.
patent says:- dont laugh.

Update:-
Even "double click " is patented??If there's a button, i need to click it once or twice, why should it be patented? How stupid is that?

To find out what type of patents Microsoft ,apple and other proprietary companies implement, just try these keywords in Google "stupid Microsoft patents" ,"stupid apple patents , "Microsoft patent facts" etc.


note:- I am no way related to microsoft ,apple.They are not my enemies ,i go against them becoz they do stupid things such as software patenting and I do have a right to criticize them as I live in a democratic country :)

When do we actually define freedom?  

Posted by Srikar

In certain situations I feel I don't have freedom.Especially while listening to boring classes for the sake of attendance,using windows operating system in our college,hiding truth in certain situations and so on.Even you might had experienced some of these situations.When a parent forces his child to study while he is playing , the child really thinks he is not given freedom to play.You shout,scream,cheer for your friend while performing in a cultural event.Birds live in freedom , they can fly to any extent they want to, unless someone stops them from doing so .Freedom is experienced in many forms in many situations, If you ask me to define the word freedom ,I cant .Becoz I think, we can only define freedom when we don't have it.


Do we remember them?




Che Guevara.
As a young medical student, Guevara traveled throughout Latin America and was transformed by the endem
ic poverty he witnessed. His experiences and observations during these trips led him to conclude that the region's ingrained economic inequalities were an intrinsic result of monopoly capitalism, neo-colonialism, and imperialism, with the only remedy being world revolution.

Gandhi.
He was a leader of the nonviolent resistance movement against British colonial rule in India during the first half of the 20th cen
tury.It is his effort and struggle we Indians enjoy today.

Nelson Mandela.
He was a fighter. Instead of bowing down to this unjust system of government, he became a lifelong warrior in the battle to free South Africa.
Starting out as a leader of an underground political movement called the African National Congress (ANC), Mr
. Mandela played a part in many dramatic demonstrations against the white-ruled government.
Mandela has frequently credited Mahatma Gandhi for being a major source of inspiration in his life, both for the philosophy of no
n-violence and for facing adversity with dignity.

Bhagat Singh.
He was an Indian freedom fighter, considered to be one of t
he most influential revolutionaries of the Indian independence movement. For this reason, he is often referred to as Shaheed Bhagat Singh (the word shaheed means "martyr").

These were the people fighting to get back the freedom of commons.And there are many great personalities in the world who always worked in the interest of commons and for welfare of human society.We all need to pay a great tribute to them.


But still these things happen!



The world still lives in poverty, may be you are fed with silver spoon,live in rich bricks,go out in luxury cars, but there are many people who are struggling hard for basic essentials and thousands of people die of hunger everyday.

The United Nations said it takes 35 billion dollars to eliminate poverty in the world and provide people with basic essentials.I wonder how United States govt spent more than 80 billion dollars for IRAQ war.This was the worst war ever happened in the human history.The war was privatized.Many corporate companies encouraged the war and participated in it.US claims:the reason for IRAQ war was the use of biological weapons in Iraq,but none of the biological weapons were found.Lakh's of innocent people in Iraq were killed.

In any freedom movement we find three kinds of people ,The people who fight for freedom ,people who under estimate the former,people who just watch the things going on.The problem is with the last two.
For example , there were few Indians who joined the British army and served them during the freedom struggle,they were selfish,they didn't care for their own people and some were just watching the crime that was going on.Now In the present social crisis
compare ourselves with the above ,which category do we belong ???

No matter how rich you are,the ones who do social service in the form of wealth,knowledge,peace will make difference and will always remain in the hearts of people.


note:The real inspiration behind this article is free software movement which had changed the computing world with its social values. Still many people don't realize its importance and still world lives on proprietary culture.Every Individual should fight for Digital Freedom.Hope you join hands to spread freedom in computing.