Open source: a savvy bet, even in tough times • The Register

Matt Asay's take on the insistent logic of Foss is worth reading. It's a nothing new—we in the field, in the industry, have heard this many times before. But it's worth going over, as the accumulation of data, arguments and narrated evidence makes the case for Foss and implicitly for open standards less and less refutable.

Still, those who refute it most effectively do not need arguments for or against to justify their actions. They need only rely on their habits. And Foss is not unique here. It's the same everywhere. When I worked at the library in UC Berkeley, as a researcher for a Mellon grant investigating slide libraries' use of the internet back in the mid-90s, the story was always the same: despite the obvious advantages, despite the absence of real anxiety relating to copyright, image fidelity, whatever, there was still resistance. That resistance took place at the last mile, when the actual implementers refused to comply not because of legal or technological reasons but because they felt it was a) too much work and b) would threaten their own jobs and livelihood, and render them irrelevant. Neo-Luddites? Perhaps: but they also had a point. And in response, we did do those things that ensured their livelihood and relevance.

(The same could be said and was about the editors of the Mark Twain Project, where I also worked. The argument was that with the Internet, you did not need and indeed did not want editors, for Twain's writing was clear and one could append or contextualize any number of ancillary documents to explicate the material.)


Foss is good, too

Accenture Newsroom: Investment in Open Source Software Set to Rise, Accenture Survey Finds

yet another.... Thanks to Marc L. for pointing me to this.


Mexican War of Independence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

How many independences does Mexico have, and how many left to celebrate before it can be said to mean something? Fraught, ironic, sad.... I grew up a child in Mexico (along with also growing up in Spain, Australia, the US), and if my heart can be said to beat to any national rhythm, it's Mexican, as my taste favours comida corrida, as my memories, left alone to wander, take me down childhood paths of Mexico City. First song I sang as a child: the Mexican national anthem. Quick forgot, replaced by the Spanish (also forgot), Australian (ditto), and US (remembered, but I recall always the more pacific one, from sea to shining sea, not the bellicose).

But the point is the Mexican Independence. We were in Queretaro this, last, and prior summers, springs, falls, and also DF, Guadalajara, and we love the places, we loved the effort QRTR put into the celebration, and the city, Queretaro, really is a city unto itself in a nation that is independent.... but, like Canada, the shadow of the neighbour cast both nurtures and deprives, and where Mexico is constantly emerging, renewing itself in its emergence, for both good and ill, Canada, at least Ontario, seems perfectly happy, if occasionally disgruntled it's not happy enough, to be unemergent.