September 24, 2002

Barbarians at the Gates! Bruce Perens at Stanford

Bruce Perens writes: "Barbarians at the Gates!
Bruce Perens at Stanford Wednesday 9/25."

Bruce Perens will be speaking at Stanford's Gates Computer Science
Building lecture hall B03 on Wednesday September 25, 4:15 to 5:30 PM. The
talk is open to the public, and will be webcast live and broadcast over the
SITN network.

The campus map is at .
Bring quarters, parking is one dollar per hour. See .

To view the webcast, sign up in advance at .
Select class ee380 in the Electrical Engineering department.


Creating a Level Playing Field for Computer Software

Today's software market does not provide a level playing field upon
which all software producers can compete fairly:

  • Vendors use deliberately incompatible intercommunication and file
    formats to lock out their competition.
  • The customer is often locked into a particular product due to
    the need to interoperate with other customers who have
    selected that product.
  • Legislation tends to favor proprietary software over Open
    Source, since Open Source has only recently attained a
    significant role in business.

The "Sincere Choice" platform seeks to redress the inequity of today's
software market through a set of principles that would allow both Free
and proprietary software to compete fairly on their merits. Sincere
Choice was created as a response to a cynical Microsoft-dominated effort
called "Software Choice", which speaks of fairness while actually acting
to maintain the status quo. But Sincere Choice has turned out to be more
than simply a response to Microsoft - it is the beginning of a viable
political platform that would support Free Software without being unfair
to proprietary software. A more complete platform would also include positions
on software patents, digital rights management, trusted systems, computer
crime, and other issues that could restrict Free Software use and development.
Bruce Perens will go over the problems in todays market, how the principles
of Sincere Choice would redress them, and possible future directions.

About The Speaker

Bruce Perens is best known as the creator of the Open Source Definition,
the canonical definition of Open Source software licensing and the
manifesto of the Open Source movement. He is also founder or co-founder
of the Linux Standard Base, Software in the Public Interest, the Open
Source Initiative, and No-Code International. His notable Free Software
includes "Busybox", a toolkit for building tiny Linux systems that has
become a standard in the embedded systems field. His "Electric Fence"
is a memory allocation debugger that has saved programmers all
over the world hundreds of thousands of hours, and has materialy improved
the reliability of software on Unix systems. Perens is former project
leader of the Debian GNU/Linux Distribution, and contributed much to the
development of Debian's software and policies. He recently left Hewlett
Packard, where he had created the corporate Open Source policy manual
and was a founding member of the company's Open Source Review Board.
Perens now provides those same services to other companies through his
consulting company, Perens LLC.

Links For Publication

Sincere Choice :

Bruce Perens: personal site:
contact information:

Click Here!