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[wlug] MEETING TONIGHT: Codebreakers documentary, end of year windup and free pizza

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Craig Box craig@d...
Mon Sep 25 11:15:56 NZST 2006

For tonights meeting, we will air BBC World's documentary "The
Codebreakers", about free/open source software.

We will also present a short recap of the events of Software Freedom Day
and a general pre-AGM wrapup, and then we will feed you with the
promised Italian flatbreads.

A synopsis for the documentary is below.  



The famous digital divide is getting wider. A documentary, The
Codebreakers aired on BBC World in May, examines whether free/open
source software (FOSS) might be the bridge?
FOSS contains 'source code' that can be used, copied, studied, modified
and redistributed without restriction. It has been around for over 20
years but most PC owners are not aware that the Internet search engines
and many computer applications run on FOSS.

"It's not that FOSS has had a bad press, it has had no press because
there is no company that 'owns' it," says executive producer Robert
Lamb. "But we found that in the computer industry and among the
afficionados, it is well known and its virtues well understood."

The crew of the independent producers who made the film went to nearly a
dozen countries around the world to see how the adoption of FOSS
presents opportunities for industry and capacity development, software
piracy reduction, and localization and customization for diverse
cultural and development needs.

Stories from The Codebreakers include computer and Internet access for
school children in Africa, reaching the poor in Brazil, tortoise
breeding programmes in the Galapagos, connecting villages in Spain, and
disaster management in Sri Lanka. The documentary also includes
interviews from key figures around the world.

Intel, IBM, Sun and Microsoft all seem to agree that FOSS is a welcome
presence in computer software. According to Jonathan Murray of Microsoft
"The Open Source community stimulates innovation in software, it's
something that frankly we feel very good about and it's something that
we absolutely see as being a partnership with Microsoft."

For more information, and to download a copy, see

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