I’m back at Maxfield’s House of Caffeine, my favorite caffeinated wireless access point, and I’m noticing several other laptops running GNU/Linux. I think any attempt to quantify free software adoption statistically is going to be flawed by the simple fact that market purchases are likely only a tiny fraction of actual uses. (You could make a similar argument vis-a-vis proprietary software since so much is pirated; but I’m willing to make an ad hoc guess that the pirated proprietary software “market” corresponds closely to the legitimate purchase market). At least in areas like San Francisco, I suspect the desktop/laptop usage of GNU/Linux is much higher than statistics suggest (e.g., see Is the Age of Desktop Linux Approaching?·, suggesting that only one percent of desktops run GNU/Linux).
Democracy Now!·, my favorite radio news program, is now providing their show in downloadable Ogg Vorbis format·. This solves two problems: (1) previously they only provided proprietary Real Audio or MP3 format, and (2) you had to do a little hacking to download the show rather than listen to it streaming. It makes imminent sense to allow people to download the full show and in a free format, particularly since the show is noncommercial/nonprofit. They’re even using the Internet Archive· to serve high quality archives of past episodes. Now I can copy the show in Ogg Vorbis format onto my portable Neuros audio player· and listen to it anywhere.
Although I’m back on the East Coast for now, I’m still quite hopeful that Matt Gonzalez· will win the election for Mayor of San Francisco. As an official registered Blogger for Matt·, I’m duty bound to ask any of you reading this blog to donate to the campaign· as there is only one week left and Matt needs to raise money to buy TV time to respond to Newsom attack ads.
The San Francisco Bay Guardian· has a good election page· with more information about the upcoming election, and newsdesk.org· is running a good interview with Matt· that will be broadcast on the radio this Sunday.