Q&A: Open-source backer Eben Moglen says software a 'renewable' resource
He's so serious about open source that he's never used Windows or the Mac OS
Computerworld - As a lawyer, law professor and software programmer, Eben Moglen is passionate about technology, software and user freedom. A former board member of the Free Software Foundation and the founder, president and executive director of the Software Freedom Law Center in New York since 2005, Moglen has worked to protect and advance open source and free software. Moglen, 48, is a Connecticut native who grew up in Manhattan and began programming for pay at the age of 13. Eventually, he worked as a developer at IBM to put himself through college and law school. A longtime friend of free software advocate, Richard Stallman, Moglen recently talked with Computerworld about his work, his belief in open source and what he sees as the changing future of software in the world economy.
Excerpts from that interview follow:
This was the journey -- from IBM to developing software to dealing with legal issues -- that brought you to your present work? Yes. The skills I acquired as a lawyer, as a historian, as a programmer -- they came together in doing this work. The issues about software were then as they are now, merely one layer in a layer cake. They are a crucial layer because the network that we live in is made out of software. But the network itself, the growing interconnection of people in society, the issues of privacy as secrecy, privacy as anonymity and privacy as autonomy were all crucial -- as was the question of how to save software from the harm done to it [by] excessive privatization.
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