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Author Topic: Richard Stallman: Just say "no" to SaaS  (Read 2625 times)
isthisthingon
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« on: July 15, 2010, 04:46:18 PM »

http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/who-does-that-server-really-serve.html

Well folks I've finally found a considerable and fundamental disagreement with Mr. Richard Stallman.  I think he's getting old and kooky in the head quite honestly.  His assertion that SaaS is all evil, even if every single piece of code was under the GPL3 license, is a bit off the deep end for me. 

I was reminded of a fantastic presentation I saw recently at an open cloud meetup.  In the beginning of the preso the speaker discussed the theory of natural selection and compared the cloud computing phase of technology we are now entering to the finches Darwin studied on the Galapagos islands.  His apparent point that he was trying to make through allegory was that the “gene” of freedom will die forever unless those who carry it survive.  SaaS is not only not going anywhere, those who refuse to embrace it will definitely “die” and wind up just like bankrupt businesses in the early 20’th century who refused to embrace the power grid and watched their competition price them out of the market.  Generating your own power became too expensive, much like hosting and managing your own server farm(s).

So with all due respect Sir Stallman, don’t be a dead finch who’s genes are forever lost.  If SaaS is to be completely avoided in order to remain true to your beliefs of free and freedom, then you just fatally poisoned a movement that could have made a better cloud world.  You didn’t even mention the possibility of community clouds that are financed, managed and totally transparent to the members that own and use them. 

“Simply abstaining” from SaaS in the business world is about as likely to succeed as abstinence only sex education – which hasn’t worked for thousands of years.  I realize Stallman is a purist and an endless idealist who’s stubborn insistence to heed the council of even the most reasoned advice from free-minded individuals is legendary and impenetrable.  But for the love of free, don’t forget that you too are a moving target and your newly revealed position on cloud computing was produced with a mind that might just be dealing with a surplus of free radicals 

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nutballs
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« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2010, 05:36:27 PM »

perk and I are screwed then. lol
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perkiset
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« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2010, 10:29:13 PM »

WOW is that a paranoid view. I guess from an absolute purist's perspective, I can see what he is saying - but his brushing of all SaaS as not just potential, but definite spyware/malware etc is perversely, almost suspiciously naysaying. I don't get it.

I guess with him about as the far extreme fringe, there will be more people that move to a middle as he creates the academic void. But man I would not have expected that argument from him.

The problem with many of his writing (IMO) is they do not address reality. It's a problem with lots of philosophies. Lots of the word, "should."

Interesting tho, thx ITTO
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« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2010, 10:29:32 PM »

perk and I are screwed then. lol

No lie. We should just pack up right now.
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« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2010, 12:06:05 AM »

I agree that in the age of Facebook & Google, I have real problems in trusting companies having my business data. That's something that SaaS companies have to overcome before I'll move my shit to the cloud. The nature of business data is way different than your personal data.
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perkiset
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« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2010, 07:44:59 AM »

Well here's the deal.

In real business, others businesses have your data. In medical, they have all your data. You shop and use the discount card, they know so much about you it's not funny.

"the cloud" writ large is simply a broad metaphor for a type of technology. SaaS is barely smaller. I have an issue with Google Docs because they specifically say that payment for usage includes them being able to read my stuff. The most silly thing about Stallmans argument here is that he bruhses all usages of an enormously broad swath of technology with the same problem. That's limited and terribly generalized thinking.

Not only is there room for cloud based execution of apps and storage, it's the future. It would be better for him to embrace that which is unstoppable and work with how to make it more of a safe offering to people, than saying No.
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isthisthingon
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« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2010, 08:05:02 AM »

Quote
Not only is there room for cloud based execution of apps and storage, it's the future. It would be better for him to embrace that which is unstoppable and work with how to make it more of a safe offering to people, than saying No.

Ding  Ditto
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nop_90
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« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2010, 04:19:26 PM »

 ROFLMAO You connect to the net, ur ISP has ur data.
You rent a server the hosting company has ur data.

I have just used google app engine.
If you code it right, you can make it so ur application will work on other "clouds"/systems.
So if u get booted off google, you could use someone else.

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isthisthingon
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« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2010, 06:08:14 PM »

 Shocked Shocked

First time nop, perks and I have all been on exactly the same page!  What, are the aliens coming or something 2012-ish?? Wink

I'm calling Unsolved Mysteries...
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« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2010, 06:21:21 PM »

Perks is a cool guy. It is just that his puppy dog enthusiasm can get annoying sometimes  ROFLMAO
So you just have this tendency to want to pop his brand new balloon  ROFLMAO

Perks is an idealist. Because of his sheltered childhood he tends to view the world very black and white Smiley
Also perks has had a very sheltered existence.
So things like a soldier tormenting small children, then next day with the same children bouncing them up and down and giving them candies troubles him Smiley.
It is the paradox of human nature Smiley And the paradox of life Smiley.

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isthisthingon
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« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2010, 06:51:10 PM »

It's the anti-paradox of posting while inebriated nop.  Have some coffee  Wink  ROFLMAO
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