Free as in Freedom, Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software

Free as in Freedom, Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software

A biographical snapshots of GNU project founder Richard Stallman with the political, social and economic history of the free software movement.

Publication date: 01 Mar 2002

ISBN-10: 0596002874

ISBN-13: n/a

Paperback: 240 pages

Views: 18,273

Type: N/A

Publisher: O’Reilly Media, Inc.

License: GNU Free Documentation License

Post time: 28 Oct 2004 11:01:52

Free as in Freedom, Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software

Free as in Freedom, Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software A biographical snapshots of GNU project founder Richard Stallman with the political, social and economic history of the free software movement.
Tag(s): Software Libre and Open Source
Publication date: 01 Mar 2002
ISBN-10: 0596002874
ISBN-13: n/a
Paperback: 240 pages
Views: 18,273
Document Type: N/A
Publisher: O’Reilly Media, Inc.
License: GNU Free Documentation License
Post time: 28 Oct 2004 11:01:52
Summary/Excerpts of (and not a substitute for) the GNU Free Documentation License:
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License". 

Click here to read the full license.
Book exceprts:

Free as in Freedom interweaves biographical snapshots of GNU project founder Richard Stallman with the political, social and economic history of the free software movement.

Starting with how it all began--a desire for software code from Xerox to make the printing more efficient--to the continuing quest for free software that exists today. It is a movement which Stallman has at turns defined, directed and manipulated. And the goal of the book is to document how Stallman's own personal evolution has done much to shape notions of what free software is and should be.

Discover how Richard's childhood and teenage experiences as well as his years at Harvard and MIT made him the man he is today. The book's narrative style includes many candid quotes (like any other type existed) from Richard and his Mother about his life, education, and work providing a entertaining, thought-provoking, and some frustrating look at RMS and Free Software Foundation (FSF).

The author had the opportunity of numerous meetings with Stallman to uncover what's behind those piercing eyes. Also, peppered throughout Free as in Freedom are insights from FSF supporters, detractors, the early MIT hackers, and those who knew him in high school and college.

If anything, the current software marketplace has made Stallman's logic-based rhetoric and immovable personality more persuasive. In a rapidly changing world people need a fixed reference point, and Stallman has become that reference point for many in the software world.

Reviews:

Amazon.com

:) "Williams should be saluted for taking on the difficult task of giving us, outside the GNU world, an understanding of the enigma who is Richard Stallman."

:) "The book is by no means a defense of Stallman. Instead, it probes beneath the surface and chronicles the events that have made him such a prominent and sometimes enigmatic figure among free software and open source developers."

Danny Yee's Book Reviews

:? "...it jumps around too much and assumes too much general knowledge of the computer industry to be a good introduction for complete outsiders."

Unix Review

:) "Williams has created a well-written and well-researched life history of Richard Stallman. "

Salon.com

:) "...that bring fresh insights into the evolving mind-set of one of the most influential programmers in the history of computer software."

New Left Review

:) "As the book makes plain, Stallman is an extraordinary figure -- a programmer of surpassing skill, capable of matching the output of entire commercial teams with his spare, elegant code; and a tireless, principled and uncompromising activist who initiated and fostered the notion of a data commons."

The Guardian

:) "Sam Williams and his publisher, O'Reilly, have taken a brave step into the unknown with Free As In Freedom..."

Interviews with the author:

O'Reilly OnLamp.com

Interviews with Richard Stallman:

BYTE Magazine
Linux Magazine
David S. Bennahum

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About The Author(s)


Sam Williams (born 1969) is a freelance writer living in Staten Island, New York, and the author of O'Reilly's Free as in Freedom: Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software. He has covered high-tech culture, specifically software development culture, for a number of Web sites. From 1998-2001, he wrote "Open Season," a weekly column on the open source software community for Upside Today. He also has conducted interviews for the Web site BeOpen.com. His first book, ARGUING A.I.: The Battle for Twenty-First Century Science, was published by Random House in January 2002. Free as in Freedom is his second book.

Sam Williams

Sam Williams (born 1969) is a freelance writer living in Staten Island, New York, and the author of O'Reilly's Free as in Freedom: Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software. He has covered high-tech culture, specifically software development culture, for a number of Web sites. From 1998-2001, he wrote "Open Season," a weekly column on the open source software community for Upside Today. He also has conducted interviews for the Web site BeOpen.com. His first book, ARGUING A.I.: The Battle for Twenty-First Century Science, was published by Random House in January 2002. Free as in Freedom is his second book.


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