Saturday, October 18, 2014

Who Are "Anybody" and "Everybody?" Diverse Inclusive Open Source 2014 Talk

Here are some notes and examples for Who Are "Anybody" and "Everybody?" my mini-talk for the Diverse Inclusive Open Source workshop at Ohio Linux Fest next week.

I. Intro: Human language is full of imprecisions and generalizations. Some words
I think that we use incorrectly when talking about people are those that start
with "any" an "every." That's true of lots of superlatives and absolutes, but I
think these have a special significance to technology and Free Software.

They communicate something we want to believe about technology and technology
communities. We want to believe everybody benefits and everybody is included.

II. Examples
1. "any user can study the source code of a free program, modify it, and share it."
...later in the same essay...
2. " software tools that everyone can use to make the NSA's job harder."

3. Very well intended, but the literal truth of these statements is debatable. The
sense in which these statements are true is that no one is legally or financially prohibited by a software license from doing these things.  What about all of the people who are prevented from doing these things for other reasons?

4. As users
money, geography, other circumstances prevent access to technology

B. Developers, Contributors
"This permits the kernel to become very popular because anyone may download it for free. Now that anyone can make their own kernel, it may be helpful to know how to obtain, edit, configure, compile, and install the Linux kernel."
        2.  "Trelby is free software, that you can contribute to."

    3.  Anyone Can Play Guitar Or Hack The Linux Kernel


    4. OReilly:  Who?  Everyone.

    5.  Ardour     You need to know C++ and use IRC
        Meyer and Cukier, 2006:  Female sounding IRC IDs attacked 25X.

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