The HeliOS Project is now.....

The HeliOS Project is now.....
Same mission, same folks...just a different name

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Monday, June 02, 2008

LINdependence 2008 - The way it is supposed to work.

Well hold the presses...

Somebody "gets" it...the way participation in LINdependence 2008 was designed to work.

Thank you Rolf Pedersen.

Oh, you haven't ever heard of Rolf Pedersen?

That's not a surprise.

If you don't frequent the Mandriva User Forums, chances are you haven't.

But Rolf Pedersen is going to do something pretty cool. He is going to do the work it takes to see that "his" distro is represented in LINdependence 2008. Fact is, he's already done it.

Now, why did I accentuate his? It isn't because he works for Mandriva, he doesn't. It isn't because he is on the Development Team, he isn't. In fact, Rolf Pedersen isn't "anyone" when it comes to Mandriva.

He's simply a Mandriva user that sees the value of getting his distro some fairly impressive media attention.

It's kind of what we're shooting for here.

I believe it is going to come as a surprise to many just who may cover this event. Fact is, I have recently received inquiries from my local Austin newspaper as well as those from NPR and the local Fox News affiliate here in Austin. The official press release, if it didn't go out today, (I've yet had a chance to speak with Larry) it will go out soon. Larry Cafiero, an editor for a real daily newspaper is writing the press release so those of you who are "rubbed the wrong way" by my hyperbole can relax.

No where in the release will it be stated that Linux will cure your gout, bad breath or get you un-audited by the IRS. It obviously doesn't do anything to alleviate ill-formed pre-conceived opinions.

God forbid if my efforts rub anyone the wrong way.

The idea is just to rub. Blogging is great...we've fairly well talked this thing to death.
Working the forums is time-consuming and a valuable service, but sometimes you just gotta get out there amongst them and do.

Like Rolf Pedersen is doing.

Now I know there are those of you who have attempted to minimize this effort as "just a few people in a small town trying Linux". "It's not like it's a big deal". You haven't been paying attention.

It is a big deal.

Admittedly, we've organized this to manipulate about every challenging human response one can imagine. Not the least of which is the David and Goliath metaphor/simile/comparison. And yes, it has been purposeful..some of you have a problem with that...mostly the ones that are content to sit behind their forums and let things just flow by.

Those news-types who have contacted me have all framed the same question in one way or another:

"Has Microsoft contacted you about this?"

No. Why should they? The last thing they want to do is acknowledge LIN08...but you can bet one thing above anything else. They are going to contact Microsoft about this. Most will seek a comment or opinion, others will use it to ask them how their flagship product Vista is doing. We have things in common us bloggers and the media. We keep a story in the news for as long as we can so we can generate more news to report.

Ya gotta love The Media.

If you want Linux to flourish, you better...they are the ones that are going to make this Linux thing happen. A decade of "word of mouth" has barely gotten us 5 percent market share world-wide. Is it growing? Probably, but with efforts like LIN08, it can grow a whole bunch faster.

We still need just everyday, ordinary distro folks to take part in this project. Even for a single day is going to be effective. You don't have to "be" anyone...just take the lead and do it. If you live in the vicinity of Felton, contact Larry or me and we will get you started in the right direction.

And no...we cannot or will not represent your distro. We can't. And we won't.

Look. This sort of thing can be repeated in small towns, villages and cities all over the world. All it takes is a few people who honestly give a flip . For the most part, we're mostly a bunch of digital welfare recipients waiting for the next freebie to come down the pike, but every now and then you get folks like Rolf who are tired of inertia weighing the GNU/Linux operating system down. They know we have the answer to computing freedom...or the keys to that freedom in our grasp.

It's just going to take a few people with a heart and a love of helping to give GNU Linux to this world. What LIN08 strives to do is bring people together in doing one thing and in accomplishing it, showing others how it can be done elsewhere. We've designed this effort to start at the very beginning and walk folks through the rough parts so they can pick it up and go the rest of the way on their own. Believe it or not, this has been thought out past "hey...I've got an idea...what if...?"

There are certainly a few hundred Linux Users within a 100 mile area of Felton. So far, we've managed to convince only a small fraction of them to give us a hand. If you can't come see us for LIN08, maybe you can get the word out to those who can. That would be appreciated.

Thanks Rolf. I am proud to be working with you in Felton.

All-Righty Then

editors note: for those who haven't figured it out, the "news clip" at the top of the page is a fake. Please don't run amok throughout the Internet and accuse me of manufacturing official news stories...there are some who would jump at the chance. Manufacture your own news by clicking this link.


kozmcrae said...

Those who feel they've been "rubbed" the wrong way here are spinning in the wrong direction.

Anonymous said...

I'm not in or anywhere near Felton but I'd be willing to lend a hand. Why not setup a mailinglist/irc channel/forum/... to allow the worldwide community to pitch in with answering any questions that come up?


Unknown said...

That's actually a good idea...problem is, we are stuck in a bubble...we can't seem to get the big folks to publish this event. Until Slashdot or picks it up...people are just not going to find out about it. Now the mainstream media will be neck deep in it once it kicks off but until then, we are struggling to get people aware of this. We are hoping enough people do individual stories on it and submit them to slashdot...that they have to pay attention. Not that it's ever worked, but we only have to get lucky once.


Amenditman said...


There are more than a few of us who regularly check this blog, we could help out with the IRC suggestion.

Admittedly, we are not all power users, but we shouldn't have to deal with a lot of difficult issues right off the bat.

I've only been using Linux (Kubuntu 7.10) for less than 2 months, but I feel like I could give some basic guidance on installs and basic configuration. I've learned a few things because I'm a tinkerer and regularly mess things up.

Let me know if this can happen at


Larry the Open Source Guy said...

ABCC makes a good point, and I'll sign up for an IRC channel on Freenode (which I have worked with in establishing an IRC channel for the college GNU/Linux User Group of which I'm president). It's not the same thing as having someone there -- as if that needs saying -- but it may help.

Also, if you can't make it to Felton, bring Lindependence to your own town . . .

Larry Cafiero

Anonymous said...

You are doing phenomenal work Helios. You and Larry both. It's a shame the rest of the community isn't behind this. At least not enough of them.

I know where the "rubbed the wrong way" comment came from. I am a member of the Mandriva community and that person is not only wrong, some of the things he said about what you've done is either a lie or he doesn't know what he's talking about. He said that the "month long hype" just didn't happen. I kept record of some of the coverage and I would say that 9 newspapers covering the story either on the front page of the sports page or business section is pretty good coverage. The dozens of non-linux websites were also a pretty good coupe.

He just doesn't like you and will do most anything to criticize your efforts. Don't lose any sleep over this joker.

Please don't stop doing what you are doing. I've emailed you off-list and I need to know where to send my donation specifically for LINdependence 08


Anonymous said...

oops. I wasn't very clear about what I meant. I was talking about the tux500 project. In all, there were 37 newspapers that covered the story. 9 of them were over one million in circulation. Even the LA Times ran your story helios. I'd say that alone was worth the pissy little amount of money people sent you. The jerk got his "ROI" many times over.


Unknown said...

@ Bob

I'm a tinkerer and regularly mess things up.

THAT is a better education than any college level course you can take anywhere...nothing like hosing X on a mission-critical machine and having to fix it yourself. Not that an ill-timed legitimate update won't do that from time to time. reinstall is not an option.


Anonymous said...

Petition(s) to have (potential) candidates adopt a distro for their campaigns.

Senator X:

Short on cash but high on a will to help out, we ask that you start up [Obamarama;McCainGain;etc] REMIX, a campaign LiveDVD Distro like those found at

The distro would provide a package we could give to existing and potential supporters to help communicate your message. The Distro could be set up to facilitate online collaboration. The Distro would help communicate your message in a way that both enhances and explores directions that are beyond what the website provides. The Distro would serve as a gift for all that want to keep your message close and track your progress after the election.

Supporters of the Senator:

Please sign below and add a comment on any ideas you have for the LiveDVD (including perhaps a better name). If you sign more than once, please include the same name and email and add a number next to your name to match the number of comment you have submitted (eg, for his third comment, J Smith would sign: "J Smith (3)").


I'd like to start this for all US senators and maybe go further. We should perhaps have a resident of the state (for all 50 states + ?) start one up for his/her Congressmen. Also, for the sake of community, I would like as many people as possible to sign regardless of party affiliation.

The idea isn't too say how much you love your rep (at least not by signing this petition), but to help set an example of what a powerful vehicle a LiveDVD/CD distro can be for anyone for any purpose.

Does this seem promising? Anyone want to fix the petition? [It takes a couple of minutes to post this to, but I'd like some feedback first.]

How about Felton Residents sign one such petition for their California (or more local) reps? We can start this now and present to some Felton rep around the time of July 4th.

It would help if between now and them, we try to contact the particular California rep chosen for a symbolic acceptance (maybe a mayor or something). We would need to develop or gather a very good explanation of what a distro is to convince the rep to join us (the two high profile US Senators have large staffs that would quickly clue the particular Senator, but others may not get a good feel for what we are offering/petitioning).

Those working Felton with their distros have something extra to work on now, as they can put together a quick proof of concept or presentation.

Remember, it's about putting the spotlight on Linux by showing off some of it's potential: to help sell other products or messages. If Senators go for it (and better the Pres candidates), it will convey a powerful message and help really jumpstart a push towards distros.

"Explore them for business or for pleasure!"

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