Thursday, March 27, 2014

New highs for LibrePlanet


What does it mean when, over a single year, the number of people who come to LibrePlanet more than doubles?

It means that the free software movement is strong and growing. It means we have a fighting chance to protect our freedom and privacy in the digital world, and that we are inspiring new people to join us.

This weekend, at LibrePlanet 2014: Free Software, Free Society:

  • Wikimedia executive director Sue Gardner kicked off the conference with a call for the free software movement to become bigger and bolder than ever.

  • Almost four hundred people attended, including fifty-four presenters, 40% of whom were women.

  • NSA-revealer and privacy hacker Jacob Appelbaum gave a remote keynote via videochat, using Tor to anonymize his location. Watch the recording and stay tuned for more videos from the conference soon.

  • Ten free software businesses and organizations strutted their stuff at LibrePlanet's first exhibit hall.

  • Members of the free software community welcomed newcomers and reaffirmed old friendships at a diverse array of social events. At the Saturday night mixer, Lulzbot raffled one of their Respects Your Freedom-certified Taz 3 3D printers.

  • GNOME executive director Karen Sandler called on free software projects to use their messaging to give people of all backgrounds a reason to participate.

  • At peak, more than three hundred people participated online through our free software livestreaming system.

  • Richard Stallman addressed the importance of free mobile devices, and Eben Moglen issued a rallying cry to finish the fight against software patents.

  • MIT student group SIPB co-organized the conference, reaffirming the free software movement's historic relationship with the university.

  • The FSF presented the GNOME Outreach Program for Women with the Award for Projects of Social Benefit, and Matthew Garrett with the Award for the Advancement of Free Software for his work against Restricted Boot. Read the Free Software Awards press release.

Twenty-eight dedicated volunteers made the conference possible. Thank GNU to Seda Akay Onur, Krista Allen, L. Brockman, Julian Daich, Ian Denhardt, Patrick Engelman, Daniel Fitzmartin, Casey Friedman, Cynthia Frommit, Emily Gonyer, Ian Gustafson, Shaun Will Hallee, Matt Hins, Malcolm Inglis, Timothy Jordan, William Kahn-Greene, Brendan Kidwell, Bassam Kurdali, Daniel Levine, Jon Littlefield, M. C. McGrath, Bram Oosten, Guillermo Perez Mayorga, Scott Reeve, Emily Savelli, Karen Tang, and Diane Williams, as well as rsiddharth for building our most beautiful Web site ever. If you're interested in volunteering next year (you'll receive gratis admission and a t-shirt), please send an email to

With the awesome community that was built and strengthened at LibrePlanet 2014, we can't wait to see what next year will bring. If you'd like us to let you know when registration opens, join the LibrePlanet 2015 announcements list today. Remember that becoming an FSF member gets you gratis admission to the conference, and bragging rights for supporting the FSF's work year-round.

Happy hacking everyone,

Zak Rogoff
Campaigns Manager

You can read this post online at


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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Take a look at the outstanding speaker lineup at DevNation.

Hey there,
Have you heard about the outstanding speaker lineup at DevNation? We have some of the top coders and thought leaders in open source lined up to deliver killer technical sessions. Join us to hear talks from:

In addition to these awesome technical sessions, you'll find a mix of hands on labs, birds-of-a-feather panels specifically for developers, a late-night hackathon, a shared Red Hat Summit-DevNation session track, and access to select Summit events.
Come to hack. Come to learn. Join the Nation.
Register now
* Keynote speaker.
April 13 - 17, 2014
Moscone Center
San Francisco, CA USA
Register now

Contact us:
@DevNationConf / #DevNation

Open hardware projects for beginners, 3D printed prosthetics, and more




Here's what's coming up in March:

Peregrine Hawthorn's 3D printed prosthetic hand inspired a standing ovation at the Intel International Sales Conference, as he spoke about its open source design and the impact it's had on his life.

The open source credit-card-sized Raspberry Pi is perfect for all sorts of projects. Here are 7 great ways to use your Pi, from encasing it in Lego to using it to keep tabs on your homebrewed beer.

This Thursday, join Eric Windisch of the Docker team as he covers the fundamentals of Docker's integration with OpenStack. Docker is one of our top ten open source projects of 2013 and is opening up new, amazing ways of deploying applications.


Join the open sourced-dialogue about the future of CIOs.

As Enterprise Architect for BJ's Wholesale Club, Peter Buonora must prioritize the company's overall application landscape and infrastructure and align that to the company's business goals. He explains how he does it.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

LibrePlanet starts now! Join us online.

LibrePlanet 2014: Free Software, Free Society kicks off this morning in Cambridge, MA. No matter where you are in the world, you can take advantage of the amazing speakers and sessions we've got planned. Every one of our three main program tracks will be live streamed, and you can participate in online conference discussion for each room on IRC.
You can find all of the streams and online participation info at: You can join the conversation on microblogging services with the hashtag #lp2014.
For the convenience of our in-person attendees, all of the session times listed on the conference site are in EDT (UTC -4), so remember to pull up your world clock if you are tuning in from afar.
Here are some of the highlights for day one of LibrePlanet 2014 (all in Room 32-123):
  • 9:45 EDT (13:45 UTC) - Opening keynote from Sue Gardner, outgoing executive director of the Wikimedia Foundation.
  • 13:50 EDT (17:45 UTC) - Your Web apps should talk not just in English, but in español, Kiswahili, 廣州話, and অসমীয়া too with Sucheta Ghoshal.
  • 14:45 EDT (18:45 UTC) - "The creeping techno-surveillance state: how can we fight back?" with Kade Crockford of the MA ACLU and Josh Levy of Free Press.
  • 17:45 EDT (21:45 UTC) - "Current issues in freedom: patents, surveillance, etc." with Eben Moglen, followed by Richard Stallman and the Free Software Awards.

EMBARGOED: Matthew Garrett, GNOME Foundation's Outreach Program for Women are Free Software Award winners

EMBARGOED: Matthew Garrett, GNOME Foundation's Outreach Program for Women are Free Software Award winners

BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA — Saturday, March 22nd, 2014 — Free Software Foundation president Richard M. Stallman announced the winners of the FSF's annual Free Software Awards at a ceremony on Saturday, March 22nd, held during the LibrePlanet 2014 conference at MIT, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Two awards were given: the Award for the Advancement of Free Software, and the Award for Projects of Social Benefit.
The Award for the Advancement of Free Software is given annually to an individual who has made a great contribution to the progress and development of free software, through activities that accord with the spirit of free software.
This year, it was given to Matthew Garrett, for his work to keep "Secure Boot" free software compatible.
One of Garrett's nominators said, "Matthew spent considerable efforts helping free software operating systems cope with the UEFI 'Secure Boot' debacle. He has also enhanced the UEFI support in those systems, both to fix bugs and to work around bugs in UEFI firmware. Matthew has led the charge to develop tools that allow users to make use of 'Secure Boot' themselves, installing their own keys and signing their own code. Finally, Matthew works with the industry organizations and companies who maintain UEFI to ensure that those standards can support free software. Even today, despite no longer working for a company that requires his work in that area, he continues to serve as a UEFI expert and debugger in his spare time."
Garrett said, "Free software has been a part of my life since I was a teenager. Growing up in an area with little interest in computing and limited internet access, having the freedom to examine and modify the source code to software was an important part of learning the skills I rely on today. Everyone deserves to be able to exercise the same freedoms that I benefited from, and I will continue to advocate for solutions that allow them to do so without compromising the security that recent events demonstrate is sorely required."
Garrett joins a distinguished list of previous winners, including the 2012 winner, Dr. Fernando Perez.
The Award for Projects of Social Benefit is presented to a project or team responsible for applying free software, or the ideas of the free software movement, in a project that intentionally and significantly benefits society in other aspects of life. This award stresses the use of free software in the service of humanity.
This year, the award went to the GNOME Foundation's Outreach Program for Women (OPW), which helps women (cis and trans) and genderqueer people get involved in free software development. OPW provides a supportive community for beginning to contribute throughout the year and offers focused internship opportunities twice a year with a number of free software organizations. Since 2010, OPW has provided 130 women with an opportunity to participate in paid remote internships with 23 free software organizations like Wikimedia, GNU MediaGoblin, and last year's winner, OpenMRS. OPW's work benefits society more broadly, addressing gender discrimination by empowering women to develop leadership and development skills in a society which runs on technology. OPW does this critical work using the ideals and collaborative culture of the free software movement.
One nomination for the program read, "[OPW] brings women into the free software movement who might otherwise not have become involved, either because they believed that they weren't welcome or that free software was just a 'boy's club.' Given the current number of women in the movement (approximately 2-5%), this project is introducing free software to a largely unreached population -- the world's women. "
Karen Sandler and Marina Zhurakhinskaya, co-organizers of OPW, were present to accept the award on behalf of OPW.
Zhurakhinskaya, a GNOME Foundation director and community engagement lead at Red Hat, which partners with GNOME to organize OPW, said, "We're honored to receive this award on behalf of the GNOME Foundation and proud that the FSF recognizes the importance of taking action to include more women."
Sandler, the GNOME Foundation's executive director, said, "We hope that this recognition inspires everyone to think about how to improve diversity in free software. We'd love it if you'd apply to participate, spread the word about the program, consider joining as an organization, or ask your company to sponsor."
Nominations for both awards are submitted by members of the public, then evaluated by an award committee composed of previous winners and FSF founder and president Richard Stallman. This year's award committee was: Rob Savoye, Wietse Venema, Richard Stallman, Suresh Ramasubramanian, Vernor Vinge, Hong Feng, Fernanda G. Weiden, Harald Welte, Vernor Vinge, Jonas Oberg, and Yukihiro Matsumoto.
More information about both awards, including the full list of previous winners, can be found at

Friday, March 14, 2014

Wherever you are, we want you to be part of LibrePlanet

The free software movement is a global phenomenon, and we want the LibrePlanet conference to reflect that. That's why, wherever you are, you are invited to participate remotely by watching the livestream and participating in the discussion via IRC.
Bookmark the remote participation center now, and go there on Saturday, March 22, 2014 and Sunday, March 23, 2014 to watch the livestream.
Don't miss:
  • A program bursting with something for everyone in the free software movement, from inquisitive newcomers to hardcore developers.
  • Keynotes from NSA-revealer Jacob Appelbaum, GNOME executive director Karen Sandler, and free software legends Eben Moglen and Richard Stallman.
  • A vibrant online discussion with free software lovers from all over the world.
Another way to participate remotely is to join the conversation around the conference on the libreplanet-discuss mailing list. Join now and dive in.
If you can make it to Massachusetts, it's not too late to register. Students and volunteers get gratis admission. So do FSF members, which makes this a great time to join as an associate member, to enjoy great benefits and support free software year-round. So that we can run the conference as smoothly as possible for everyone, we ask that you register by the end of the day on Tuesday, March 18, 2014. However, late registrations and walk-ups will still be accepted.
We'd also like to express our gratitude to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Student Information Processing Board, our partner in organizing LibrePlanet 2014.
See you soon, whether it's in person or online,
Zak Rogoff
Campaigns Manager
PS - If you have a Web site or blog and want to represent LibrePlanet, you can embed our spiffy LibrePlanet Web badge.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Ford Invites Open Source Community to Tinker Away

EE Times (02/27/14) Junko Yoshida 

People will be able to customize and tinker with their Ford Motor vehicles using the automaker's OpenXC open source platform. OpenXC works like an application programming interface for cars and combines open source hardware and software in a way that will enable enthusiasts to extend their vehicles with custom applications and pluggable modules. OpenXC uses standard, well-known tools to open up a wealth of data from the vehicle. The idea is to make the car as easy to program as a smartphone. Ford engineer Zachary Nelson has used OpenXC to re-task the motor from a Microsoft Xbox 360 game controller to create a shift knob that vibrates to signal gear shifts in a standard-transmission Mustang. The prototype uses the OpenXC research platform to link devices to the car via Bluetooth, and shares vehicle data from the on-board diagnostics port. "We designed the platform such that people can have real-time access to the vehicle data and they can do whatever they want with that data," Nelson says. He also notes that people with smartphones can use OpenXC to connect with real-time vehicle data.

Open Source Challenges a Proprietary Internet of Things

Computerworld (03/04/14) Patrick Thibodeau 

Without interoperability, consumer devices, electronic appliances, and sensor-equipped wearables will not recognize each other and communicate. Although there is no consumer electronics vendor large enough to force interoperability between all devices, there are vendors large enough to frustrate the path to it by building an Internet of Things mostly around their products. However, the open source industry believes it has the method, the process, and the influence to drive the electronics industry toward true interoperability. The Linux Foundation recently created the AllSeen Alliance, which combines the AllJoyn Framework with its open source network. The C++ code supports the major operating systems, chipsets, and embedded variants. Having the C++ code available will deliver the network effect and propel device interoperability, says Linux Foundation executive director Jim Zemlin. However, what is missing in Linux Foundation's effort is the support of the mega-vendors such as Samsung and Apple, according to Enderle Group analyst Rob Enderle. He says such dominant vendors typically frown on open source because it enables others to penetrate their markets. "Open source has an important role to play, and the earlier that's acknowledged and facilitated, I think that's better for everyone," says consultant Andrew Aitken.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

One month until LibrePlanet! Schedule and t-shirt design announced!

LibrePlanet 2014 t-shirt
Women's and men's styles available.
It's only weeks until LibrePlanet, hosted by the Free Software Foundation and MIT's Student Information Processing Board (SIPB), and more people are registering every day (you could be one of them!). We've got some announcements to make:
  • We posted the complete schedule, so you can start thinking about which sessions you'd like to attend. This year's conference will be jam packed with great talks like "updating Mailman's UI," "fighting surveillance with free software," and "mapping for social justice." Make sure you check out the social events, including a Saturday night party and raffle.
  • We finalized the design for this year's t-shirt! Register online by March 5, 2014 to pick up a shirt, or buy one at the conference.
  • If you can't make it to Cambridge, you'll still be able to livestream the conference and watch recordings of the sessions afterwards. We encourage you to bookmark our streaming portal, Participating remotely doesn't require any kind of registration.
  • Looking to coordinate travel with other LibrePlanet attendees? Brainstorm ideas for lightning talks? Organize a get-together after the conference? Join the libreplanet-discuss email list to connect with other LibrePlanet attendees. After LibrePlanet, the list will become a place for discussing the conference and sharing ideas for next year.
If this sounds good to you, I hope you register for LibrePlanet. Don't forget that becoming an FSF member will make your admission gratis and support the FSF's work year-round.
Zak Rogoff
Campaigns Manager

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Free Software Supporter - Issue 71, February 2014

Free Software Supporter

Issue 71, February 2014
Welcome to the Free Software Supporter, the Free Software Foundation's monthly news digest and action update -- being read by you and 76,457 other activists. That's 809 more than last month!
View this issue online here:
Encourage your friends to subscribe and help us build an audience by adding our subscriber widget to your web site.
Miss an issue? You can catch up on back issues at


El Free Software Supporter está disponible en español. Para ver la versión en español haz click aqui:
Para cambiar las preferencias de usuario y recibir los próximos números del Supporter en castellano, haz click aquí:
Le Free Software Supporter est disponible en français. Pour voir la version française cliquez ici:
Pour modifier vos préférences et recevoir les prochaines publications du Supporter en français, cliquez ici:


  • The FSF is hiring: Seeking a Boston-area full-time Web Developer
  • Sign up for the FSF's next seminar on GPL Enforcement and Legal Ethics
  • FSF joins forces with SFLC and OSI to fight software patents in U.S. Supreme Court
  • One month until LibrePlanet! Schedule and t-shirt design announced!
  • GNU MediaGoblin campaign for federation and privacy in 2014!
  • We're so excited for 2014
  • Free software fighting back against bulk surveillance
  • Thank you for the software that makes our work possible
  • LulzBot TAZ 3 3D printer now FSF-certified to respect your freedom
  • Watch and share this LibrePlanet video
  • February 2014 - Espoo and Helsinki, Finland - At Altoo University and at Haaga-Helia's Happy Hacking Day
  • April launches membership campaign entitled "giving priority to free software"
  • SHU lectures offer different perspectives on the Internet
  • Intel AVX-512 support added to GCC
  • #ilovefs report 2014
  • FSF Europe comments on UK proposal on document formats
  • Show your love for Free Software
  • Three things to do on The Day We Fight Back
  • LibrePlanet featured resource: JS Developers Task Force
  • GNU Spotlight with Karl Berry: 18 new GNU releases!
  • GNU Toolchain Update
  • Richard Stallman's speaking schedule and other FSF events
  • Thank GNUs!
  • Take action with the FSF!

The FSF is hiring: Seeking a Boston-area full-time Web Developer

From February 14th
The Free Software Foundation seeks an experienced and passionate Boston-based individual to be its full-time Web Developer.

Sign up for the FSF's next seminar on GPL Enforcement and Legal Ethics

From February 18th
Registration is now open for the FSF's seminar on GPL Enforcement and Legal Ethics, which is being held on Monday, March 24th, 2014, at Suffolk University Law School.
Press release:

FSF joins forces with SFLC and OSI to fight software patents in U.S. Supreme Court

From February 28th
The Free Software Foundation (FSF) joined the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) and the Open Source Initiative (OSI) in filing a brief amici curiae in software patent case Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank before the United States Supreme Court

One month until LibrePlanet! Schedule and t-shirt design announced!

From February 27th
It's only weeks until LibrePlanet, hosted by the Free Software Foundation and MIT's Student Information Processing Board (SIPB), and more people are registering every day (you could be one of them!)

GNU MediaGoblin campaign for federation and privacy in 2014!

By Chris Webber, from February 26th
GNU MediaGoblin has partnered up again with the Free Software Foundation for a crowd funding campaign to add new features like podcast support, wrapping up federation support and releasing 1.0, adding new privacy features, and making MediaGoblin even easier to run and deploy!

We're so excited for 2014

From February 11th
Every winter, we launch a fundraiser to sustain our work for the coming year. This time, we set out to raise $450,000, our highest ever goal. And because so many of you chipped in, we were able to reach it.

Free software fighting back against bulk surveillance

From February 11th
FSF joined a team of more than thirty organizations to rally against bulk surveillance, in a global event called The Day We Fight Back. Despite their diverse issue areas, each of these organizations recognizes that bulk surveillance is a direct threat to the freedom and security of their supporters and their ability to do work.

Thank you for the software that makes our work possible

From February 14th
At the FSF, we not only spend every day promoting, protecting, and building free software -- we also use exclusively free software for everything we do. From our servers to our desktop systems and laptops, from our accounting to our Web and print publications, everything is done using software that is available for everyone to use, share, and modify.

LulzBot TAZ 3 3D printer now FSF-certified to respect your freedom

From February 7th
The Free Software Foundation (FSF) has awarded Respects Your Freedom (RYF) certification to the TAZ 3, the fifth model in the LulzBot line of 3D printers by Aleph Objects, Inc. The RYF certification mark means that the product meets the FSF's standards in regard to users' freedom, control over the product, and privacy.

Watch and share this LibrePlanet video

From February 5th
One of LibrePlanet's major goals is inspiring people to make things and share them with their communities. So we knew 2013's conference was going well when an attendee volunteered to create a video for 2014, using only free software tools.

February 2014 - Espoo and Helsinki, Finland - At Altoo University and at Haaga-Helia's Happy Hacking Day

From February 28th
RMS was in Finland, to give his speech "A free digital society", at Aalto University's Design Factory, in Espoo, on February 10, 2014, and then was at Happy Hacking Day, an event organized by Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences, to give his speech "Free software, defending your digital freedom."

April launches membership campaign entitled "giving priority to free software"

By April, from February 19th
The French free software organization April is launching a membership campaign to increase its operational capacity, to prioritize free software, and help build a freer, more egalitarian, and more caring society.

SHU lectures offer different perspectives on the Internet

From February 11th
FSF executive director John Sullivan joined Frank Warren of Postsecret in a lecture series to discuss collaboration and community on the Web at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT.

Intel AVX-512 support added to GCC

By GCC, from February 17th
This includes inline assembly support, new registers and extending existing ones, new intrinsics, and basic autovectorization.

#ilovefs report 2014

By FSF Europe, from February 21st
On February 14, 2014, people all around the world expressed their gratitude and appreciation for free software by participating in FSF Europe's #ilovefs campaign.

FSF Europe comments on UK proposal on document formats

By FSF Europe, from February 26th
FSF Europe has submitted comments in support of a proposal by the UK government to use only document formats based on free formats and standards.

Three things to do on The Day We Fight Back

BY FSF Europe, from February 11th
In honor of the global "The Day We Fight Back" event, FSF Europe offers three suggestions for small steps we can take to secure a democratic future for our societies.

Join the FSF and friends in updating the Free Software Directory

From February 27th
Tens of thousands of people visit each month to discover free software. Each entry in the Directory contains a wealth of useful information, from basic category and descriptions to version control, IRC channels, documentation, and licensing. The Free Software Directory has been a great resource to software users over the past decade, but it needs your help staying up-to-date with new and exciting free software projects.
To help, join our weekly IRC meetings on Fridays. Meetings take place in the #fsf channel on, and usually include a handful of regulars as well as newcomers. Everyone's welcome.
The next meeting is Friday, February 28 from 2pm to 5pm EST (19:00 to 22:00 UTC). Details here:
After this meeting, you can check to see the rest of March's weekly meetings as they are scheduled.

LibrePlanet featured resource: JS developers task force

Every month on LibrePlanet, we highlight one resource that is interesting and useful -- often one that could use your help.
For this month, we are highlighting the JavaScript developers task force, which provides information about setting JavaScript free with the FSF's FreeJS campaign. You are invited to adopt, spread, and improve this important resource.
Do you have a suggestion for next month's featured resource? Let us know at

GNU Spotlight with Karl Berry: 18 new GNU releases!

18 new GNU releases in the last month (as of February 25, 2014):
To get announcements of most new GNU releases, subscribe to the info-gnu mailing list: Nearly all GNU software is available from, or preferably one of its mirrors ( You can use the url to be automatically redirected to a (hopefully) nearby and up-to-date mirror.
This month, we welcome Matthew Tytel as the maintainer and author of his new GNU package cursynth, Yoni Rabkin as the new maintainer of emms (in addition to his longstanding work as a volunteer with the FSF licensing group), and Rik as a new co-maintainer of Octave. Thanks to all.
A number of GNU packages, as well as the GNU operating system as a whole, are looking for maintainers and other assistance: please see if you'd like to help. The general page on how to help GNU is at To submit new packages to the GNU operating system, see
As always, please feel free to write to me,, with any GNUish questions or suggestions for future installments.

GNU Toolchain update

From February 24th
The GNU toolchain refers to the part of the GNU system which is used for building programs. These components of GNU are together often on other systems and for compiling programs for other platforms. This month features multiple improvements to GCC and GDB.

Richard Stallman's speaking schedule

For event details, as well as to sign-up to be notified for future events in your area, please visit
So far, Richard Stallman has the following events in March:

Other FSF and free software events

Thank GNUs!

We appreciate everyone who donates to the Free Software Foundation, but we'd like to give special recognition to the folks who have donated $500 or more in the last month.
This month, a big Thank GNU to:
  • Dmitriy Korolev
  • Chris Plough
  • Michael P. Wilson
You can add your name to this list by donating at

Take action with the FSF

Contributions from thousands of individual members enable the FSF's work. You can contribute by joining at If you're already a member, you can help refer new members (and earn some rewards) by adding a line with your member number to your email signature like:
I'm an FSF member -- Help us support software freedom!
The FSF is also always looking for volunteers ( From rabble-rousing to hacking, from issue coordination to envelope stuffing -- there's something here for everybody to do. Also, head over to our campaign section ( and take action on software patents, DRM, free software adoption, OpenDocument, RIAA and more.


Copyright © 2014 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit

FSF joins forces with Software Freedom Law Center and Open Source Initiative to fight software patents in U.S. Supreme Court

FSF joins forces with Software Freedom Law Center and Open Source Initiative to fight software patents in U.S. Supreme Court

BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA -- Friday, February 28, 2014 -- The Free Software Foundation (FSF) joined the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) and the Open Source Initiative (OSI) in filing a brief amici curiae in software patent case Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank before the United States Supreme Court yesterday.
The jointly filed brief argues that the "machine or transformation" inquiry employed by the Court in Bilski v. Kappos is the correct, and exclusive, bright line test for patent eligibility of computer-implemented inventions. It says that not only do software idea patents fail established tests for patentability; they also violate the First Amendement.
On March 31, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States will hear oral arguments in the case, in which the Court has granted certiorari, apparently to decide a question previously reserved: under what circumstances patents may be granted for inventions implemented in computer programs. A decision is expected by summer.
FSF executive director John Sullivan added, "We are proud to be a party to SFLC's brief, along with OSI. Software patents should be opposed not just by all computer programmers and users; they should be opposed by anyone who values freedom of expression. We've seen many recent proposals to make software idea patents 'better,' or to fight trolls, but they miss the fundamental point. We do not want these restrictions on free speech and human creative expression to be of higher quality -- we want software idea patents gone."
The FSF has been campaigning for decades to abolish software idea patents. Its End Software Patents campaign filed a brief in the Bilski case, and released a documentary film detailing the problem. The campaign's wiki has continued to grow as a preeminent source of legislative, judicial, and philosophical information in the area.
FSF president Richard M. Stallman regularly speaks out against software patents, often highlighting their absurdity by imagining how we would feel about similar patents on literature.

About the Free Software Foundation

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and use of free (as in freedom) software -- particularly the GNU operating system and its GNU/Linux variants -- and free documentation for free software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and political issues of freedom in the use of software, and its Web sites, located at and, are an important source of information about GNU/Linux. Donations to support the FSF's work can be made at Its headquarters are in Boston, MA, USA.