Richard Stallman

Today was my first opportunity to use the met keyword of XFN, but I won’t, for reasons that I’ll elaborate. Read on.

Why does the Open Source movement still comes across as the realm of hackers, geeks and strange people with half grown beards? Why do some people refuse to consider the movement seriously? No offense to the big guy, but Richard Stallman may be one of the reasons why. I had the opportunity to meet a real, live hacker face-to-face, and it wasn’t something I could pass over. So Vivek, Nandu and I went over and listened to a big fat guy, belligerent, bloated and haggard, wearing a T-shirt that didn’t cover his stomach and a pair of sweat-pants that came up often as he bent down to scratch a leg, give a talk on ‘Software Patents’. It’s hard to take the guy seriously when he comes off as a joker at first glance, it’s harder to make him a hero.

What can I say? Illusions lost, lessons learnt.

5 Replies to “Richard Stallman”

  1. Sometime around April 2000ish I went to a talk given by Richard Stallman in Cambridge, at the Arsdigita ‘University.’ In addition to the general grubbiness you describe above, midway through his talk he paused, tugged at his pant leg, cut a sharp fart, kept pausing, gave a strange smirk, and then moved on. No one knew what to do — we all just kept staring like nothing had happened.

    I mean, really…. what the hell is that?

    ps. Your comment submission form totally sucks…. it’s way, way, way too small and has no preview function. yuk. The default MovableType comment box is bad enough — don’t make it worse!

    Like

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