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CODE4LIB  March 2008

CODE4LIB March 2008

Subject:

Re: Announcement: Open Source In Libraries Website

From:

Daniel Chudnov <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Code for Libraries <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 27 Mar 2008 14:17:53 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (35 lines)

Chadwick Seagraves wrote:
> This might be of interest to some of you.  I know that oss4lib has been
> around for a while, but I think there is room for more coverage.

There's definitely room for more coverage!

In case anybody cares (I don't see why it matters, but people often ask
me, so...), I've long advocated that anybody who thinks they want to do
something new and public to market the idea of free software in
libraries should go ahead and go for it.  oss4lib has long had a focus
on exposing software projects that might not otherwise have much of a
voice on their own in the library community.  That was really important
in 1999 when oss4lib.org started.  Maybe it's not so important now.

In any case, the web is a big place, and we don't all speak in code like
we do here on this list.  My only concern is that I see and hear a lot
of people speaking poorly about free software and open source.  I used
to speak poorly about it, too, when I first started.  So I'm as likely
as ever to attempt to help people refine the message they're spreading
(I had a piece to this effect in the recent Computers in Libraries
magazine featuring open source in libraries, and see also my obnoxious
booing of kgs during her c4lc '07 keynote for a less dignified version
of the same argument).  And I hope people starting new initiatives have
at least half the skin thickness I had to develop early on, back when
they thought us crazy anarchist hippies just wanted to crack into
everybody else's systems and destroy the free market.

If anything, that these folks apparently never took the time to search
"open source in libraries" and review the first hit on major search
engines makes me wonder if they know the marketplace very well or what
they're going to have to say that's new or correct or even useful.  But
that doesn't mean I wouldn't wish them well.  Let two flowers bloom,
with an option on 998 more!

   -Dan

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