Open Source Conference
Second Life is not a game - it is a social, interactive, 3D version of the Internet. In this talk from the O'Reilly Open Source Convention, Philip Rosedale, CEO and Founder of Linden Lab, discusses the implications of the virtual world Second Life, his company's move towards open source, and the value of open source as a business strategy in a network-effects market.
If you're a software developer, you probably already know who Steve Yegge is. Developers all over the world spend a lot of their time reading or commenting on his blog when they're not writing code. A senior software engineer at Google, an ex-Amazon employee, one of the most widely read bloggers, an excellent hacker, and an outrageously funny chap, Steve talks about why branding is so important.
Rick Falkvinge is a Swedish politician who recently founded a new party. Its values include freedom, upholding laws, and rights to privacy. These may sound like safe and just laws - things that are constant and don't need defending; so what's jeopardizing them? According to Falkvinge, that would be copyrights and patents.
We live in a world of cognitive biases and polarized opinions. We consider ourselves to be largely rational, yet we are often prone to systematic errors such as overconfidence, wishful thinking, and the attraction of strong opinions. This means decisions are often driven more by personalities and passions rather than technical merits. Economic theorist Robin Hanson explores common errors, and points to innovative tools such as prediction markets which can help overcome bias and promote truth.
Mark Shuttleworth began Ubuntu in 2004 with a dedicated group of developers intent on creating a revolutionary new Linux desktop. Now, many in the Linux community are calling it the Linux desktop for real people. After three years of phenomenal growth, Shuttleworth sat down with Tim O'Reilly at the first ever O'Reilly Media sponsored Ubuntu Live Conference. During the interview, Tim asks Mark for insight into Ubuntu's meteoric rise and about key challenges for Ubuntu going forward.
Software concurrency is hard to get right, and the main tools programmers have to deal with it are over 30 years old. Simon Peyton-Jones of Microsoft Research discusses a new technique called Transactional Memory that is simple to program and removes many of the possibilities for error inherent in traditional concurrent programming. Look for Transactional Memory to be more important as multi-core programming becomes standard.
In this philosophical discussion of principle and policy, Eben Moglen talks about the essence of GPLv3 and argues we've wasted the last ten years talking about open source without talking enough about freedom. There's a lot of work to be done on the distortion of the software market, prevention of monopolies, licensing and patents, and the correction of public policy to prevent the misuse of freedom.
There has been a lot of talk about the difficulties of parallel programming, but Intel has decided to do something about it. Intel representatives announce the open sourcing of Threading Building Blocks, a product used to simplify parallel development. TBB has been around for several years as a proprietary tool, and Intel hopes that by opening it up, it will reach a broader audience and be adapted to more situations.
Extensions are small plug-ins that add functionality to Firefox, ranging from simple toolbar buttons to completely new features. In this panel discussion, strategists from Mozilla and two companies who've built successfully on the Firefox platform share their perspectives on the mutual benefits the extensions ecosystem provides. Through such openness, the browser continues to take a more prominent role in shaping the way users experience the web.
The O'Reilly Media founder and CEO presents one of his regular Radar updates, with the focus this time squarely on open source software. The world in which open source now operates is very different from the world in which it started. O'Reilly believes that the problems of scaling caused by the growth of the web and large on-line applications means we need to examine the freedoms we associate with open source in a new light. It's more important than ever that we rediscover the freedoms we care about and learn how to protect them in new and more relevant ways.