OK, for $10.000.00 and the grand prize, who is responsible for this quote?:
"There is no Linux Community...the best we've achieved is a large group of warring factions who use the vast real estate of the Internet to wage bloody war against each other."
Eric S. Raymond maybe? No, How about Bruce Perens? No again? Let's go with John "Mad Dog" Hall...that sounds like something he would say, at least in his younger years.
Nope again. Much to my shame...
I said that.
Unfortunately, I was not content to say it just once...every time the "community" did something I perceived as counter-productive, I would dust it off and trot it out like it was brand new and some sort of profound revelation.
Yeah, and I said counter-productive...
Like dressing a school teacher down in public for doing what she thought was right. She may have been wrong around the edges, but at the core, she did her job. I mean, after the ashes settled, even that turned out for the better...she is now a Linux user. But still...
We do have our dark side. We, as in the Linux Community.
Because there is a Linux Community...dark side not-withstanding, it is a good community.
Linux Against Poverty was just one of the shining jewels we can claim as our own. While we were focused on that, there is an ongoing sister-effort taking place in Florida. Michael Hall along with his wife (he's the developer of Qimo,) an Ubuntu-based distro for kids; is doing pretty much the same thing we are. Oh, you really need to read Michelle Hall's blog. It brings what we do in this business into sharp perspective.
But wait...there's more.
There is a great website called http://www.growingupfree.com. It serves as a clearinghouse for organizations and individuals that do what we do. It's a good place to start if you are looking to get involved in something like this in your area
There is a new blogsite called Linux Luminaries. A site devoted to bringing the best of the best to the forefront of mention...those who give and give with their hearts. It won't just be devoted to our project, but much of it will.
There is a point to all of this.
These are, for the most part, Linux-based efforts. Now correct me if I am wrong, but I don't believe I have ever heard of a project called "Windows Against Poverty"...or Mac Attack on Poverty...
Neither have I seen much of Windows or Mac Users starting and following through with such initiatives.
It's the "follow through" part that gets to most of them... But in fairness, what have they got to rally behind? A stiff price tag and a draconian End Users License Agreement? No, neither of those would seem to invoke any community-minded spirit.
Sure, the corporates have funded huge initiatives to help those that need it...mostly when they had just gotten a black eye by getting caught doing something wrong. In my heart and mind I cannot believe anything they've done of this nature had any origin in altruism.
But that's the corporates...not the users. It's the Linux Users that form the root causes and projects that make a difference. It's the users that spend money out of their own pockets to enrich the lives of others...to indelibly and for the better change the lives of others.
It's the Users Stupid...
Not the corporates.
And it all comes back to what I said at the beginning.
Yes Virginia, there is a Linux Community. It lives and breathes in tens of thousands of lives every day...people helping people find a better way to run their computers.
Not multi-billion dollar corporations, not political action committees...it's the users that help people use their computers.
And in the most precious of cases...giving them a computer to use.
It's The Linux Community doing much of this.
So I was wrong and I proudly admit it...no shame, just growth.
Thank you for planting the seed.
Saturday, August 08, 2009
blather and mumbling provided by Ken Starks at 4:06 PM