[Freedombox-discuss] Raining on the parade

Jonathan Wilkes jancsika at yahoo.com
Mon Jun 25 20:25:15 UTC 2012

----- Original Message -----

> From: Matthias-Christian Ott <ott at mirix.org>
> To: freedombox-discuss at lists.alioth.debian.org
> Cc: 
> Sent: Monday, June 25, 2012 3:39 PM
> Subject: Re: [Freedombox-discuss] Raining on the parade
> On 2012-06-25 21:10, Markus Sabadello wrote:
>>  On Mon, Jun 25, 2012 at 10:45 AM, Michiel de Jong 
> <michiel at unhosted.org>wrote:
>>  On Mon, Jun 25, 2012 at 6:41 AM, Stephen Michael Kellat
>>>  <skellat at fastmail.net> wrote:
>>>>  In a [hostile] regime, this is not a plug and pray platform
>>>>  that requires no training.
>>>  that's probably the appropriate conclusion. and i think we should 
> not
>>>  underestimate the importance of freedombox in the US and also in
>>>  Europe. This is something we need. On all levels, and for the general
>>>  public. So i think it should be a tool aimed both at relatively-free
>>>  and not-so-free countries, at the same time, keeping in mind the
>>>  differences between the use cases, and providing documentation with it
>>>  to educate users.
>>  Yes definitely.. The FreedomBox was born out of Eben Moglen's vision to
>>  liberate
>>  us from the centralized Facebooks, Googles, etc. It is about having data
>>  under
>>  our control, and about decentralized communication. My understanding is
>>  that the
>>  use case of political activism is of course important, but just a subset of
>>  the
>>  FreedomBox idea.
> I think this pretty much sums up to views upon the project that have
> often been been brought up on this mailing list: There are some people
> who want it to be a free, censorship-resistant, distributed, meshed,
> secure etc. (insert your favourite property here) device, which is in
> itself a noble and ambitious idea but perhaps a bit to too difficult
> given the readily available technology in the near future, and others
> who simply want it a small server that provides an alternative/a
> substitute to the above mentioned types of services.
> There has been a lot of discussion, but little progress compared to the
> interest the project initially had and to some extent still has. Perhaps
> one should focus the efforts on features that can be delivered in a year
> or two and accept that these ambitious ideas are part of the next big
> step and that having working software is more important in the current
> situation. If that means that the FreedomBox is not the perfect computer
> for dissidents, we will have to accept this for now (remember that most
> people volunteer in their free time).
> Maybe applying a more structured software development process (e.g.
> assigning people to tasks and keeping track of their progress and
> maintaining a development plan/schedule) could help to make better
> progress, so that the FreedomBox becomes something tangible and usable
> instead of an idea, though it could be difficult without full-time
> developers (just a thought).
> I don't know if this has been said before on this mailing list as I have
> not always the time to pay close attention, but following the discussion
> of the last weeks I think this had to be said.

I have my own ideas about what it should do, but even ignoring that I can
say for now it just needs to a) boot up, b) run, and c) create _some_ type of
connection to another freedombox.  "Hi Bob, looks like I'm connected."
"Great, Alice."

It looks like the development is heading in this direction.  When it
gets to the point where I can plug in a box and say, "Hi," I'll buy one, because
I'm sure things will progress quickly after that.  Of course I want it to do more
but that in itself is enough for me to start having some fun with it. :)


> Regards,
> Matthias-Christian
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