Version 3 of the Affero GPL has just been released by the Free Software Foundation (FSF). It seems that the FSF is endorsing the Affero GPL more openly now than they used to: “The FSF recommends that people consider using the GNU AGPL for any software which will commonly be run over a network”.
It seems now finally the FSF is no longer taking sides in the sense in which Archis – even if currently working for Microsoft – already stated in his GPLv3: Is Stallman taking sides.
Nevertheless I still wonder if and in what ways Stallmans own views might have changed or might be changing in his upcoming article on this matter.
But regardless; we are happy with the new license, and after reading it carefully, we decided to use it for OgOg and LogiLogi Manta as it reflects our views on Free Web-software better than version 2.
Let’s hope the FSF as of now continues to be as much for Freedom on the Web as we are.
If you’ve been wondering what LogiLogi (Manta) is, you can now finally find a clear and short description of it, it’s philosophy and it’s relevance in this 1500-words paper:
The growth of the web has been quite invisible for philosophy so far, and while quite some philosophizing has been done about what the web could mean for the human condition, not much has been said about what it could mean for philosophy itself. An exception is some early enthausiasm for newsgroups and forums in the nineties, but that quickly died out when it became apparent that those were not suitable at all for in-depth philosophical conversations. The web as a medium however is more than these two examples of early web-systems, and in the meantime it has further matured with what some call Web 2.0, or social software (sites like MySpace, Del.icio.us and Wikipedia). Time for a second look… read on
This is the paper that we will submit to the Digital Humanities 2008 conference, where we hope to be able to present the live LogiLogi Manta in june 2008. We are still waiting for some people to finish their review of it, so we can’t yet say it’s the final version of the paper, but it won’t change drastically anymore.
And you can also have a look at our pre-alpha of the UI as it is being integrated, click here for that. This integration is something that will be done much sooner than June, but we hope to add usability-improvements and AJAX-wizzardry to make it super usable for all of us with mainly a philosophy or humanities-background, and that’s what will be done before the summer-breeze of June comes around with the conference.
When I sent Why Freedom Matters for Web 2.0 to Richard Stallman, it basically only contained a link to the video of my presentation about freedom and the web at T-Dose 2007. He then replied to me that it was inconvenient for him to download and play (OGG)-video’s on his machine, so hereby for him, and for all of you, the substance of the presentation written out. For those who want to view the video and can’t play OGG but other formats, try Google video, but keep in mind what you just did, while watching or reading.
Why freedom matters for the web ? Many acknowledge the importance of Free Software; code that one can use for any purpose, modify and share, because of the freedoms it ensures. But now with the growth of Web 2.0, more and more software runs on remote servers and via the Web-Loophole in the GPL this means that it does not need to be free from the viewpoint of normal users (no access the code on remote servers), even if GPLed. Nor does it in principle need to be free in this broad sense according to Stallman’s current views (which can be found here). Why this is a problem, and why I think that Freedom does matter for the web I will now explain. For this I will first try to make clear what this so called Web 2.0 could be.
Web 2.0 can be understood as a division of labor for the web itself. Functions that used to be there in many sites, like the front-page, the profile-page, search, pictures, a login, avatars, etc., are now becoming separate services like Digg, one’s Blog, Google, Flickr, OpenID / MS Passport, and Gravatar to name a few. These are essentially pie-sliced applications that in varying degrees can be tied together in mashups, not unlike to how small, specialized programs can be piped together in the Unix philosophy....Continue reading »