Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Software and Freedom

Free Software Foundation vehemently supports free use and distribution of software. It is some thing like you get a good code you can share it with your neighbour. Once can't deny the role FSF and Open software has played in computing industry.

The freedom as proposed by fsf has a slight glitch. The code may be free to use but not easy. Let us take freedom in political domain. In all modern democracies freedom of people are ensured by rights and a right of expression is mentioned which is like a core, a base around which other freedoms rest. That is why importance to journalism is given even though it has no formal role in constitution. So is our software.

Let me explain. How many times have you [I am talking to Linux users] cursed your machine for not able to do something in your work, do you hate working on a console the whole day? The point is it comes free you can always download source of anything from net change it and start using it but the trouble in changing. Look at the amount of documentation, forums which one has to consult to.

It reminds me one of the Franz Kafka's short stories [which are extremely metaphorical]where a man always came for justice on door of law and the gaurd always refused him to go in. When the man was about to die gaurd told him you never went in the gate was made for you only.

So we have created free software but you have to be a geek or a coding god to understand and create your own stuff. My basic premise is software or code is software usage is an act of expression so whenever I tell this windows to do something someone has thought over and made windows such that it would be nice for me. But the glitch is that how could he think about all the possible needs of me. In such a diverse world with myriads of requirements who would go on making software for others.

We should create platforms where the user has more control over the system not in terms of open ness but ease of use also. Freedom needs its own enablers and checks and balances as well.

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