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First LibrePlanet 2020 keynote announcement: Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle

Mer, 15/01/2020 - 23:41

BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA -- Wednesday, January 15, 2020 -- The Free Software Foundation (FSF) today announced Brewster Kahle as its first keynote speaker for LibrePlanet 2020. The annual technology and social justice conference will be held in the Boston area on March 14 and 15, 2020, with the theme "Free the Future." Attendees can register at https://my.fsf.org/civicrm/event/info?id=87&reset=1.

Internet archivist, digital librarian, and Internet Hall of Famer Brewster Kahle has been announced as the first of multiple keynote speakers for the FSF's annual LibrePlanet conference. Kahle is renowned as the founder of the Internet Archive, a nonprofit dedicated to preserving the cultural history of the Web.

With its mission to provide "universal access to all knowledge," the Internet Archive is an inspiration to digital activists from all over the world. Through its "Wayback Machine," the Internet Archive provides historically indexed versions of millions of Web pages. For his work as an Internet activist and digital librarian, Brewster was inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame in 2012.

Commenting on his selection as a LibrePlanet keynote speaker, Kahle said, "Free software is crucial in building a digital ecosystem with many winners. The Internet Archive is completely dependent, as are millions of others, on free software but also free content. I look forward to presenting at LibrePlanet, but mostly from learning from those attending as to where free software is going."

FSF executive director John Sullivan welcomed Kahle's announcement as a keynote speaker by saying, "The Internet Archive plays an important role in our lives, ensuring that Internet users for years to come will be able to view all of the Web exactly as it was at a specific point in history. Our focus at this year's LibrePlanet is to 'free the future,' and Brewster's work reminds all of us that we cannot have a future without a reliable history. The FSF is honored to have Brewster keynoting the conference."

The FSF will announce further keynote speakers before the start of the conference, and the full LibrePlanet 2020 schedule is expected very soon. Thousands of people have attended LibrePlanet over the years: some in person, and some by tuning into the fully free software livestream the FSF has of the event. LibrePlanet has welcomed visitors from up to fifteen countries each year, and individuals from many others participate online. The conference's video archive contains talks recorded throughout the conference's history, including keynote talks by Edward Snowden and Cory Doctorow.

About LibrePlanet

LibrePlanet is the annual conference of the Free Software Foundation. Over the last decade, LibrePlanet has blossomed from a small gathering of FSF associate members into a vibrant multi-day event that attracts a broad audience of people who are interested in the values of software freedom. LibrePlanet 2020 will be held on March 14th and 15th, 2020. To sign up for announcements about LibrePlanet 2020, visit https://lists.gnu.org/mailman/listinfo/libreplanet-discuss.

Registration for LibrePlanet: "Free the Future" is open. Attendance is free of charge to FSF associate members and students.

For information on how your company can sponsor LibrePlanet or have a table in our exhibit hall, email campaigns@fsf.org.

Keynote speakers at LibrePlanet 2019 included Bdale Garbee, who has contributed to the free software community since 1979, and Tarek Loubani, who runs the Glia Project, which seeks to provide medical supplies to impoverished locations. The closing keynote was given by Micky Metts, a hacker, activist and organizer, as well as a member of Agaric, a worker-owned cooperative of Web developers.

About the Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as in freedom) software -- particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants -- and free documentation for free software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of software, and its Web sites, located at https://www.fsf.org and https://www.gnu.org, are an important source of information about GNU/Linux. Donations to support the FSF's work can be made at https://donate.fsf.org. Its headquarters are in Boston, MA, USA.

MEDIA CONTACT

Greg Farough
Campaigns Manager
Free Software Foundation
+1 (617) 542 5942
campaigns@fsf.org

Photo by Vera de Kok © 2015. Licensed under CC-BY-SA 4.0.

Contract opportunity: Bookkeeper

Mon, 25/11/2019 - 22:21

The contractor will work closely with our business operations manager and the rest of the operations team to ensure that the organization's day-to-day financial functions run smoothly. We are looking for a hands-on and detail-oriented professional who is comfortable working both independently and with multiple teams as needed. Ideal candidates will be proactive and highly adaptable, with an aptitude for learning new tools and paying close attention to minutiae despite dense financial material. Applicants should have at least three years of experience with nonprofit bookkeeping and finance. Familiarity with tools we use is a plus, such as SQL Ledger, CiviCRM, LibreOffice, and Request Tracker.

Contract expectations include:

  • preparing weekly accounts receivable, payables, deposits, and purchasing,

  • assisting with monthly financial reconciliation,

  • processing incoming tickets in our internal/external ticketing system, and

  • supporting the annual audit.

Contract details

This is a 3-month contract position at 10 to 20 hours per week, with responsibilities to be performed on-site at the FSF's downtown Boston office. All work will be done in the office with free software. Compensation is competitive.

Application instructions

Applications must be submitted via email to hiring@fsf.org. The email must contain the subject line "Bookkeeper." A complete application should include:

  • cover letter,
  • resume,
  • hourly rate requirements, and
  • three recent references.

All materials must be in a free format (such as text, LibreOffice, or PDF files). Email submissions that do not follow these instructions will probably be overlooked. No phone calls, please.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. To guarantee consideration, submit your application by December 11, 2019.

The FSF is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate against any employee, contractor, or application for employment or contracting, on the basis of race, color, marital status, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, handicap, or any other legally protected status recognized by federal, state or local law. We value diversity in our workplace.

About the Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as in freedom) software -- particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants -- and free documentation for free software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of software, and its Web sites, located at fsf.org and gnu.org, are an important source of information about GNU/Linux. Donations to support the FSF's work can be made at https://donate.fsf.org. We are based in Boston, MA, USA.

Talos II Mainboard and Talos II Lite Mainboard now FSF-certified to Respect Your Freedom

Gio, 07/11/2019 - 20:13

BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA -- Thursday, November 7th, 2019 -- The Free Software Foundation (FSF) today awarded Respects Your Freedom (RYF) certification to the Talos II and Talos II Lite mainboards from Raptor Computing Systems, LLC. The RYF certification mark means that these products meet the FSF's standards in regard to users' freedom, control over the product, and privacy.

While these are the first devices from Raptor Computing Systems to receive RYF certification, the FSF has supported their work since 2015, starting with the original Talos crowdfunding effort. Raptor Computing Systems has worked very hard to protect the rights of users.

"From our very first products through our latest offerings, we have always placed a strong emphasis on returning control of computing to the owner of computing devices -- not retaining it for the vendor or the vendor's partners. We hope that with the addition of our modern, powerful, owner-controlled systems to the RYF family, we will help spur on industry adoption of a similar stance from the many silicon vendors required to support modern computing," said Timothy Pearson, Chief Technology Officer, Raptor Computing Systems, LLC.

These two mainboards are the first PowerPC devices to receive certification. Several GNU/Linux distributions endorsed by the FSF are currently working towards offering support for PowerPC platform.

"These certifications represent a new era for the RYF program. Raptor's new boards were designed to respect our rights, and will open up new possibilities for free software users everywhere," said the FSF's executive director, John Sullivan.

The Talos II and Talos II Lite also represent an interesting first in terms of reproducible builds. When two people compile the same code, the resulting object code usually differs slightly because of variables like build timestamps and other differences affecting the object code. Making it so users can independently reproduce exactly the same builds for important free software programs makes it so that anyone can distribute the builds with more certainty that they do not contain hidden malware. For the Talos II, the FSF was able to reproduce the build that is loaded onto the FPGA chip of the board that was tested, and will include the checksum of that build along with the source code we publish.

"We want to congratulate Raptor Engineering on this, and we encourage vendors to ship more reproducible builds, which we will be happy to reproduce as part of the RYF certification," said the FSF's senior system administrator, Ian Kelling.

To learn more about the Respects Your Freedom certification program, including details on the certification of these Raptor Computing Systems devices, please visit https://ryf.fsf.org.

Retailers interested in applying for certification can consult https://ryf.fsf.org/about/criteria.

About the Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as in freedom) software -- particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants -- and free documentation for free software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of software, and its Web sites, located at https://fsf.org and https://gnu.org, are an important source of information about GNU/Linux. Donations to support the FSF's work can be made at https://donate.fsf.org. Its headquarters are in Boston, MA, USA.

More information about the FSF, as well as important information for journalists and publishers, is at https://www.fsf.org/press.

About Raptor Computing Systems, LLC

Raptor Computing Systems, LLC is focused on developing and marketing user-controlled devices.

Media Contacts

Donald Robertson, III
Licensing and Compliance Manager
Free Software Foundation
+1 (617) 542 5942
licensing@fsf.org

Raptor Computing Systems, LLC sales@raptorcs.com

Image of Talos II by Raptor Computing Systems, LLC Copyright 2018 licensed under CC-BY-SA 4.0.

LibrePlanet returns in 2020 to Free the Future! March 14-15, Boston area

Gio, 07/11/2019 - 18:10

BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA -- Thursday, November 7, 2019 -- The Free Software Foundation (FSF) today announced that registration is open for the twelfth LibrePlanet conference on free software. The annual technology and social justice conference will be held in the Boston area on March 14 and 15, 2020, with the theme "Free the Future." Session proposals will be accepted through November 20.

The FSF invites activists, hackers, law professionals, artists, students, developers, young people, policymakers, tinkerers, newcomers to free software, and anyone looking for technology that respects their freedom to register to attend, and to submit a proposal for a session for LibrePlanet: "Free the Future."

Submissions to the call for sessions are being accepted through Wednesday, November 20, 2019, at 12:00 EST (17:00 UTC).

LibrePlanet provides an opportunity for community activists, domain experts, and people seeking solutions for themselves to come together in order to discuss current issues in technology and ethics.

"LibrePlanet attendees and speakers will be discussing the hot button issues we've all been reading about every day, and their connection to the free software movement. How do you fight Facebook? How do we make software-driven cars safe? How do we stop algorithms from making terrible, unreviewable decisions? How do we enjoy the convenience of mobile phones and digital home assistants without being constantly under surveillance? What is the future of digital currency? Can we have an Internet that facilitates respectful dialogue?" said FSF's executive director, John Sullivan.

The free software community has continuously demanded that users and developers be permitted to understand, study, and alter the software they use, offering hope and solutions for a free technological future. LibrePlanet speakers will display their unique combination of digital knowledge and educational skills in the two day conference, as well as give more insights into their ethical dedication to envision a future rich with free "as in freedom" software and without network services that mistreat their users. The FSF's LibrePlanet 2020 edition is therefore aptly named "Free the Future."

"For each new technological convenience we gain, it seems that we lose even more in the process. To exchange intangible but vital rights to freedom and privacy for the latest new gadget can make the future of software seem bleak," said Zoë Kooyman, program manager for the FSF. "But there is resistance, and it is within our capabilities to reject this outcome."

Thousands of people have attended LibrePlanet over the years, both in person and remotely. The conference welcomes visitors from up to 15 countries each year, with many more joining online. Hundreds of impressive free software speaker sessions, including keynote talks by Edward Snowden and Cory Doctorow, can be viewed on the conference's MediaGoblin instance, in anticipation of further program announcements.

For those who cannot attend LibrePlanet in person, there are plenty of other ways to participate remotely. The FSF is encouraging free software advocates worldwide to use the tools provided on libreplanet.org to host satellite viewing parties and other events. They also opened applications for scholarships for people around the globe to attend the conference in Boston, and encourage supporters who are able to help others attend by donating to the LibrePlanet travel fund.

About the Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as in freedom) software -- particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants -- and free documentation for free software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of software, and its Web sites, located at https://www.fsf.org and https://www.gnu.org, are an important source of information about GNU/Linux. Donations to support the FSF's work can be made at https://donate.fsf.org. Its headquarters are in Boston, MA, USA.

MEDIA CONTACT

Zoë Kooyman
Program Manager
Free Software Foundation
+1 (617) 542 5942
campaigns@fsf.org

FSF and GNU

Mon, 07/10/2019 - 04:45

The Free Software Foundation (FSF) and the GNU Project were both started by Richard M. Stallman (RMS), and he served until recently as the head of both. Because of that, the relationship between the FSF and GNU has been fluid.

As part of our commitment to supporting the development and distribution of fully free operating systems, the FSF provides GNU with services like fiscal sponsorship, technical infrastructure, promotion, copyright assignment, and volunteer management.

GNU decision-making has largely been in the hands of GNU leadership. Since RMS resigned as president of the FSF, but not as head of GNU ("Chief GNUisance"), the FSF is now working with GNU leadership on a shared understanding of the relationship for the future. As part of that, we invite comments from free software community members at fsf-and-gnu@fsf.org.