[scot.announce] Programming Freedom seminar by Richard Stallman at Edinburgh

tw@aifh.ed.ac.uk (toby) (05/30/91)

AI Dept Seminar at 10.00 a.m. Thursday June 6th. Hall C, David Hume Tower.


                        Richard Stallman
                           MIT AI Lab
                         Cambridge, MA


New monopolies threaten the freedom of programmers to continue doing
their work.  Copyrighted interfaces prohibit supporting the commands
users know and expect.  Patented algorithms and techniques make each
design decision carry the risk of a lawsuit.  Formerly limited to the
US and a few other countries, these problems now threaten to spread to
the rest of the world.

Richard Stallman will talk about how these monopolies originated in
the US, how they are being pressed on other countries, and why they
are bad for computer users and programmers.  He will then suggest what
you can do to prevent them in your country.


Richard Stallman is one of the founders of the League for Programming
Freedom, a grassroots organization of programmers and users fighting
to bring back the freedom to write programs.

Specifically, the League aims to abolish two recently established
forms of monopoly which restrict programmers' freedom to do their
work: interface copyright and software patents.  The 600 or so League
members include professors, students, entrepreneurs, and users, but
primarily professional programmers.

In the field of software, Richard Stallman is best known for
developing the extensible editor, Emacs, while working at the MIT
Artifical Intelligence lab between 1971 and 1984.  Today he is working
to develop the free UNIX-compatible software system known as GNU.
Like many other software developers, he fears that the new monopolies
will make his work impossible to continue.

In 1990, Stallman received a MacArthur Foundation fellowship; he also
received the 1990 ACM Grace Hopper Award for his work on Emacs.

For more information about this and future seminars please contact
Toby Walsh <Toby_Walsh@uk.ac.edinburgh>


Toby Walsh,                       JANET: Toby_Walsh@uk.ac.edinburgh
Dept of Artificial Intelligence,  ARPA: Toby_Walsh%uk.ac.ed@nsfnet-relay.ac.uk
80 South Bridge,                  UUCP:  ...!ukc!ed.ac.uk!Toby_Walsh
Edinburgh EH1 1HN                 TEL:   +44 31 650 2725