This day is one of my favorite day, because Richard Matthew Stallman pay a visit today to Universitas Indonesia. Yes, the RMS himself blessed us with his appearance talking about Free Software. I don’t know, but his 2 hours of speech wasn’t boring at all. Instead, all of us was fascinated by how he convinced us about free software, not the open source software.

As for your information, my class was dismissed because almost all of the students went to see RMS. We asked for permission from our lecturer and he was okay with it. Yes, his class is interesting, but to see the founder of true freedom in software society is like a dream once in a life time. Glad that we took the time.

He talked about free software and how people misinterpret it with open source, which not all of them is a free software. He also talked about how people unfairly credited the complete operating system by naming it only the kernel, which isn’t a free software completely and backfired to the free software people by hindering the philosophy behind free software.

Did you know that the word “Linux” that we used were the word referring to a GNU operating system that on the kernel stack be happened to use Linux kernel? The C compiler, C library, toolchains, editors, and many others was made on GNU stack? The kernel itself is a little part of that stack.

That’s why, it’s unfair to credit only a kernel for all of the operating system. The GNU project also have their part and it’s huge. It doesn’t mean also not credit the kernel is also appropriate. Both need to be credited equally, that’s why the whole operating system should be called GNU/Linux [read: “GNU slash Linux”].

Why GNU must be mentioned? Because Torvalds and Stallman have different idea. By saying Linux only, then the kernel guy, which a pragmatic person, is often be heard. The GNU project, which was to advocate freedom on software usage will never be heard. The point is, there is a message that GNU project wants to advocate, your freedom, and it won’t be reached because of the crippling of the name.

And many more.

Gosh, I’m tired but I’m happy because I have his autograph on my t-shirt. He is one of my hero.

A typical screen shot: Stallman autograph