[Fsf-friends] Building to last

Ramanraj K ramanraj@md4.vsnl.net.in
Wed Mar 31 06:56:22 IST 2004

>>> Secondly why is there no democratic body at the core
>>> which oversees development of software in open source
>>> arena
> Generally open source software is a meritocracy -
> you get more votes or more influence on one particular
> project by contributing more/better to the project.

While browsing through: 
http://cm.bell-labs.com/cm/cs/who/dmr/bsdi/bsdisuit.html :

These files were obtained via FTP from the UUNET server in 1992 and 1993 
(that is, at times approximately corresponding to the dates encoded in 
their names). I picked up all the things that seemed relevant. 
Similarly, UUNET may have chosen documents, from those publicly 
available, that seemed relevant to them. UUNET and BSDI had significant 

The files are as I found them. There are some strange characters in 
them; whether these result from an OCR process or character-set 
strangeness in computer originals I do not know.

We are not very far away from 1992-93, and of course, in spite of `some 
strange characters' all the documents are substantially clear. We should 
be concerned if our works would be readable and usable with 100% 
accuracy after years, decades, centuries or milleniums down the line.

It is important to have a minimum standard for text files and for 
program code, so that they are readable and usable down the years.

Existing organisations have pointed objectives. For instance, 
would say that the `ANSI Federation’s primary goal is to enhance the 
global competitiveness of U.S. business and the American quality of life 
by promoting and facilitating voluntary consensus standards and ensuring 
their integrity.'

Probably FSF could draw up an inflexible and rigid minimum standard, for 
text and program code, and promote its use to enable continuity and 
stability where it is need the most - like for instance in legal 

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