Skip to content

Push Free Software and Open Science for Horizon2020

Summary: please help us to get the idea about the importance of Free Software as a condition for Open Science into the mind of stakeholders and decision-takers of the Horizon2020 program. You can do so by participating in the interim evaluation and re-using FSFE’s position paper.

What came to my mind the first times that I read “Open Science” was that this term should not be necessary in the first place. In common understanding as well as in its self-conception, “openness” is the elementary part of all science. “Openness” in a sense that all scientific results shall be published publicly along with experimental settings, methods and anything else that leads to their results. It is exactly this approach that – in theory – gives everyone the chance to reproduce the experiment and get to the same results.

But although this approach of openness might still be the noble objective of any scientist, the general idea of a publicly available science is called into question since at least the de-facto domination of publishers over science journals and the creation of a profit-oriented market-design. It cannot be the point of this blogpost to roll out the problematic situation in that nowadays the consumers and the content creators both have to pay publishers for overpriced science journals, financed with public money. Instead, at this point, most important is that these high prices are contrary to the idea of universal access to science as they give access only to those who can afford it.

Send and receive Open Science?

Fortunately, Open Access came up to do something about this problem. Similar to Free Software, Open Access uses free licenses to offer access to science publications to everyone around the globe. That is why Open Access is an important step towards the universal access of science. Unfortunately, in a digital world, Open Access is just one of many tools that we have to use to achieve an Open Science. Equally important is the format and software that is used. Also, Open Access only covers the final publication and misses to cover the steps that lead to there. This is where Open Science steps in.

Read More →

Lerne ein Werkzeug für Freie Software kennen: FragDenStaat.de

Heute in einer Woche beginnt der Chaos Communication Congress (33C3) und die FSFE-Assembly bietet dir dieses Jahr 21 Sessions. Darunter ist auch Arne Semsrott von der Open Knowledge Foundation Deutschland, der dort das Portal FragDenStaat.de betreut und an unserer Assembly einen Informationsfreiheits-Workshop für Einsteiger anbietet.

Wie auf dem FSFE summit dieses Jahr vorgestellt, planen wir in etwa Mitte nächsten Jahres die Kampagne “Public Money – Public Code” zu starten. Wie Katharina Nocun auf dem Summit erklärt, steckt Im Kern der Kampagne die Forderung, dass mit öffentlichen Geldern finanzierte Software(-entwicklungen) wiederum der Öffentlichkeit zur Verfügung gestellt werden.

Read More →

Upcycling von Software? Ein paar Gedanken.

Auf der OpenRheinRuhr bin ich mit Frank Lanitz und Wolfgang Romey zusammen gekommen um über verschiedene Aspekte der Nachhaltigkeit von IT und Software zu diskutieren. Frank hat uns zusammengebracht, weil im Eigenbaukombinat in Halle eine Informationsreihe zum Thema Upcycling geplant ist. In diesem Rahmen fragten wir uns ob es eigentlich ein upcycling von Software gibt? Was könnte man darunter verstehen?

Nehmen wir mal die laut Wikipedia erste Definition von upcycling zur Grundlage:

“‚Recycling‘, sagte er, ‚ich nenne es Down-cycling. Sie schlagen Steine kaputt, sie schlagen alles kaputt. Was wir brauchen, ist Up-cycling, bei dem alte Produkte einen höheren Wert erhalten, keinen geringeren.”

Es geht also darum ein gefertigtes Produkt in einer Weise zu verändern, dass es einen “höheren Wert” erhält, folglich geht es darum ein existierendes, in die Jahre gekommenes, Produkt nochmals aufzuwerten, zu verbessern.

Read More →

Die neue Berliner Koalition und Freie Software: Zwei Schritte vor, einer fehlt noch

Vertrag steht: Rot-Rot-Grün in Berlin - CC0 via pixabay
Vertrag steht: Rot-Rot-Grün in Berlin – CC0 via pixabay
Berlin hat seit bald zwei Wochen seinen ersten Rot-Rot-Grünen Koalitionsvertrag. Als Bundeshauptstadt und als ein Motor der deutschen digitalen Wirtschaft kommt dieser Regierung zugleich eine bundesweite Bedeutung zu. Das nun entstandene Werk ist durchaus Freie Software freundlich und fortschrittlich. Obwohl die vielleicht weitreichendste Entscheidung leider keinen Eingang gefunden hat: Eine Gesetzesänderung, die fortan verpflichten würde, von öffentlichen Geldern finanzierte Software unter einer Freien Lizenz zu veröffentlichen. Im folgenden eine Analyse des Vertrages unter dem Blickwinkel der Förderung und Verwendung Freier Software.

Text zu lang? Spring zum Resümee

Inhaltsverzeichnis:
Förderung Freier Software
Eigenentwicklung Freier Software
Wirtschaft
Bildung und OER
Wissenschaft und Open Access
Resümee

Read More →

Localizing our noCloud slogan

there is noCloud

At FSFE we have been asked many times to come up with translations of our popular “There is no CLOUD, just other’s peoples computers” slogan. This week we started the localization by asking our translator team and have been very surprised to see they already come up with translations in 16 different languages.

In addition, our current trainee Olga Gkotsopoulou and asked her international network and we asked on twitter for additional translations. And, what can I say? crowdsourcing seldom felt so appealing. In two hours we got 8 more translations and after 24 hours we already had 30 translations.

The quickness in that we got so many translations shows us that the slogan is indeed at the pulse of time. People are happy to translate it because they love to send this message out. At the time of writing we now have 36 translations and two dialects on our wiki-page:

Read More →

Call for sessions at the FSFE assembly during 33C3

FSFE assembly during 32C3
FSFE assembly during 32C3
Every year, from December 27 to 30, there is the Chaos Communication Congress. And, as in recent years, FSFE is happy to host an assembly that includes an information booth, self-organised sessions and a meeting point for all friends of Free Software to come together, share or simply relax.

This is our call for participation. We are happy to organise sessions in the name of our assembly and we will book proper rooms or offer our assembly itself. Sessions can be inspiring talks, hands-on workshops, community/developer/strategy meetings or any other public, informative or collaborative activity.

Topics can be anything that is about or related to Free Software. We welcome technical sessions but we also encourage to give non-technical talks that address philosophical, economical or other aspects of/about Free Software. We also like sessions about related subjects that have a clear connection to Free Software for example privacy, data protection, sustainability and similar topics. Finally, we welcome all backgrounds – from your private project to global community projects.

You have something different in mind? For our friends, it is also possible to have informal meetings or activities at our assembly. In this case, get in contact with me and we figure it out.

Formalities

Michał Woźniak hosts a session about Freedom in social networks during 32C3
Michał Woźniak hosts a session about Freedom in social networks during 32C3

If you are interested in hosting a session at the FSFE assembly, please apply no later than

* Sunday, November 20, 18:00 UTC *

by sending an email to me (eal at fsfe dot org) with the subject “Session at 33C3” and use the following template:

Title: name of your session
Description: description of your session
Type: talk / discussion / meeting / workshop …
Tags: put useful tags here
Link: (if there is a helpful link)
Expected number of participants: 20 or less / up to 40 / up to 100
About yourself: some words about you/your biography

You will be informed latest on Wednesday, November 23, if your session is accepted.

Good to know

  • If your session is accepted we happily take care of its proper organisation, publicity and everything else that needs to be done. You are then welcome to simply come and give/host your session : )
    But this is neither a guarantee for a ticket nor do we take care of your ticket! Check this CCC-announcement and get yourself a ticket in time. If you miss it, there is nothing we can do, even if we accepted your talk.
  • You do not need to be a Fellow of FSFE to host a session.
  • Please share this call with your friends or your favorite mailing list.
  • Related information: Our Sessions in 2015, during 32C3

What do political parties in Berlin think about Internet policy issues?

Grumpy Cat builds a GNU Internet (9693327611) This post is for those who who are allowed to vote for the “Abgeordnetenhaus” next Sunday, September 18, but do not speak German and therefore have no clear idea about the different political parties and what they stand for. If you are interested in Internet policy issues, however, I translated the content of a press release by the “Koalition Freies Wissen” (means the coalition of free knowledge) for you, to help you choosing your favorite party.

Read More →

10 years of my first Wikipedia article

Today, 10 years ago, I made my first substantial edits into Wikipedia about documentary photography (“Dokumentarfotografie”). It was the same day I started for the first time an article from scratch, about the large passion (“Die große Passion”) by Albrecht Dürer. Looking into the version history of these articles today is interesting from a biographical point of view but also from a technological one.

Read More →

Looking back on the first ever FSFE summit

At your service
At your service

Last weekend, September 2nd to 4th, we organised the first ever FSFE summit to bring together our pan-European community and Fellows for a whole weekend. A conference as a gathering, with the potential to build bridges and band together.

The FSFE summit was part of the QtCon, an event where people from different communities – Qt, KDAB, KDE, VLC – and our friends and community from the FSFE came together under one roof to get in contact with each other, to share skills and knowledge. All of this in a welcoming environment that offered a lot of space for all of us.
Looking back, one of the greatest things to hear, multiple times, was about people who came for the FSFE summit and then went to a technical talk about Qt or KDE once in a while. And about Qt developers that came and said it is great to have the chance to hear a political talk and they were joining the FSFE summit from time to time. Mixing our different communities and sharing expertise rarely seemed so easy. Two of FSFE’s local heroes turned out to be KDE contributors, just like one of our current community representatives, Mirko Böhm. Many VLC contributors were joining the FSFE 15 years party and so many stories more that have to be told.
Our initial plan, to bring our communities together at the same event and under one roof, turned out to be happily accepted by the communities and visitors of QtCon. Thanks for everyone who made this event possible, the countless volunteers and the participants. Seeing all of you bringing this event to life was fantastic.

Read More →

“Show Europe” and other specialties at the first FSFE summit

With just eight days left, the FSFE summit is very close. This week, we finalized the schedule and herewith I like to point out some specialties of our program and recall the initial idea behind the summit.
FSFE summit header
Let’s go back to the beginning of our thoughts: Initially, the idea of organizing a FSFE summit was to organize for the first time a main event that brings together FSFE members, friends and supporters from all over Europe. It should be free to attend, open to topics and nice to be at. Then, like a coincidence, just some weeks later we were invited to join the QtCon and since then we have been more than happy for this generous offer.
Being part of the QtCon for the FSFE is kind of symbolically as well. It is our chance to be part of a setting in that the FSFE summit is an integral part of a bigger event. An event, that includes four other communities and, with KDE and VLC, two prominent Free Software solutions. Such a setting feels in a way like the offline-realization of how the FSFE feels about its general and political role: an organisation that is deeply embedded inside the Free Software movement.

Read More →