SPUG: GSLUG THIS SATURDAY, July 9th -- OSS: What it is and How it is Threatened

Ken Meyer kmeyer at blarg.net
Tue Jul 5 23:59:58 PDT 2005


The July 2005, regular meeting of the Greater Seattle Linux Users Group
(GSLUG) will be held this Saturday, July 9th, starting promptly at
10:00 AM on the North Seattle Community College campus.


    We are confirmed to use room IB 3319.

    Parking is free on weekends.

    For directions, please visit the GSLUG monthly meetings web page at:


    Please feel free to forward this announcement as appropriate.


NOTE: We have been fortunate to be able to put together a meeting of
presentations on the subject of what open source is (by Charles Mauch
of TacLUG) and several of the legal threats to it, by Steve Reisler (a
who is Elaine Tsiang's husband).

These are synergistic presentations on subjects of EXTREME importance to
all open source advocates.  As always, participants in all other associated
user groups are invited.  Moreover, the observations, "This subject is too
<advanced, elementary> (insert as appropriate) are "inoperative" for this
meeting, which will be presented in plain English.  Understand what it is
must be defended and why that is necessary -- or run a substantial risk
of losing it!  We are anticipating a lot of group discussion on these

The presentation topics will be:

    * 10:00 AM - An Open... and Shut Case?  How Complacency and
                         the Courts Could Put Tux in the Slammer

	Steven A. Reisler

This subject applies generally to all free and open source software,
and not just Linux. I don't mean this to sound apocalyptic, but I sense
that many in the community are not aware of certain trends in current
litigation that could have very significant effects -- on programmers
specifically -- but also on techies in general.

I will focus primarily on four legal trends:

* Where the SCO/IBM litigation seems to be headed;

* What the recent Supreme Court ruling regarding cable internet
   access portends for the web;

* What the recent Supreme Court Grokster ruling means for
   intellectual creativity; and

* Why everyone in the techie community needs to keep their
   eyes on federal judicial appointments.

These are very big topics, so I will paint rather broadly.

                       Steve Reisler's Bio

I am not a techie; I am a lawyer and civil/commercial litigator who
has practiced for 25 years and who is familiar with techie issues.
My CV can be found at:


I have the only (to my knowledge) King County law firm running 100%
open source software (thank you Elaine!).

I spoke at LinuxFest Northwest 2004 regarding "A Legal Lens on the
SCO-IBM Litigation".

I have chaired several WSBA Continuing Legal Education seminars, mostly
on contract litigation and ethics.  I am a past member of the Board of
Governors of the WSBA, past editor-in-chief of the Washington State
Bar News and past Chair of the Washington State Commission on
Judicial Conduct.


     * 11:15 AM - A Brand GNU World; An introduction to the
                          Free Software Movement.

                            By Charles Mauch

This presentation is about the open source community and it's shared
history and values.  It was created with the new user in mind, and
emphasizes things like sharing and ethics.  It isn't a technical
I feel that everybody understands the technical reasons for using Free
and Open Source Software (FOSS), but that many LUG members are
missing-out on some of the philosophy behind the movement.

The presentation covers the following topics:

  * A Short History of Free and Open Source Software

  * Benefits of Free Software

  * Some Drawbacks to Free Software

  * Common Misconceptions

  * Current Threats [riposte to Steve]

  * How to Contribute

                            Charles Mauch's Bio

Charles Mauch has been working with GNU/Linux and other UNIX
platforms for about 12 years.  Charles has a background in security
systems and in network infrastructure (data and telephony).  He has
taught courses at local community colleges on Hacking, Computer
Security, Computer Forensics, Establishing VPN's, and in combating
fraud.  He tends to work for School Districts, Hospitals, and other
businesses with a humanitarian focus.

When left to his own devices, Charles tends to spend his spare time
talking to office plants, eating glue from supply cabinet, and attempting
to exterminate the weasels who have infested his pencil drawer
[perhaps he does stand-up as well!].

Charles has been working on an paper to go along with this presentation
which expands on the subjects he will be talking about in more detail.  He
plans on bringing a limited number of copies, but it will be available
online immediately after the meeting for perusal.

[Charles has been a driving force and voice of moderation, contributing
greatly to the success of TacLUG, our counterpart LUG in Tacoma, as a
member, frequent presenter and a past Moderator on its Board.]


    The typical GSLUG meeting agenda is as follows:

       10:00 AM       First Presentation

       11:00 AM       Break

       11:10 AM       Key Announcements and (usually) Raffle Quiz

       11:15 AM       Second Presentation

       12:15 PM       Break

       12:30 PM       Raffle prizes giveaway, when available

       12:35 PM       GSLUG business, including discussion of potential
		          future presentation topics

                	          Announcements by attendees

                	          Requests for assistance desired during the
		          following Workshop session, including
		          trouble-shooting and help with Linux installation
		          (bring your system).

       1:00 PM-ish    Formal meeting is adjourned; Workshop and
                             social networking opportunities begin,

                * Installation and trouble-shooting assistance

                   For recommendations on preparations to maximize the
                   probability of a successful outcome, it is recommended
                   that you consult the "What to Bring" topic, way down the
                   page at:


                * Potential break-out discussions about interest-group

                * Informal PGP key signing

                * Talking, chatting, blathering, etc, etc.

       4:00 PM        End of meeting


GSLUG meetings are held regularly on the second Saturday of the month
at 10 AM, currently at North Seattle Community College and USUALLY
in room 3319.

Meeting announcements are posted to the gslug-announce mail list.
To receive reminders for future GSLUG meetings and notice of other
GSLUG activities, you are invited to join the list at:


Directions, agenda, and presenters' bios will also be posted on
the GSLUG website, on the home page and at:


You are also invited to join the gslug-general discussion list at:


And a new wiki site is at:


  -- The GSLUG Crew

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