January 20, 2010

Linux.conf.au - Day Three

 

The glorious weather that had punctuated the first two days of the conference held, heralding in the third day in a blaze of sunshine. The conference proper was introduced by a keynote by Benjamin Mako Hill on Antifeatures: Why your software works against you and why software freedom offers hope of a better future. Mako explored the concept of anti-features as deliberately included functionality or a lack of functionality that users hate so much they will pay to have them removed. Some classic examples included the gator spyware that was included with free version of p2p software on the windows platform - with a spyware-free version available for a fee.

Mako took the audience through why anti-features exist to further profits, and showed how in an environment dominated by free and open software they would be unable to survive.

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