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Stalking Stallman

RMS is a nice guy; I agree with a fair chunk of what he says, and I think some of the Stallman/aureole photos are hilarious:

http://images.google.co.uk/images?q=saint+stallman

Over the last week or so, I've been trying to get a comment from the great man on the recent Australian trademark wrangle. This is for a news piece in the next issue, and while I've not had an answer (yet), I have had to agree to several of RMS's own questions before he would consider a reply.

These questions revolved around ensuring the use of the word 'Linux' was used only in reference to the kernel, and GNU/Linux was used when referring to the operating system we all love. He also wanted to distance himself from the term 'Open Source', which he states “is the slogan adopted in 1998 by people who reject the philosophy of the Free Software Movement.”

This is fair enough, we're all familiar with Stallman's philosophy, his zeal, and his incessant promotion of GNU and Free Software, and I respect him for it. But, I'm not sure if RMS can hold back the tide. The term 'Linux' is like one of Richard Dawkins' memes; an infectious idea that represents far more than any tidy distinction between the kernel and everything else. Isn't that what language is all about?


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