Software Freedom Day 2007

Software Freedom Day 2007 in Beijing

Beijing Software Freedom Day 2007 is over. The event success reflects the growing interest by students, teachers and the educational industry as a whole. With a participation of over 700 people, 15 exhibitors and 10 speakers we can only say this is just the beginning!

A big thank you to everyone for your participation !

Full report here, presentations posted on the program page and photo gallery here and here (Keith) and here (Colin Charles).

Software Freedom Day
September 15th, 2007 - 1PM
Tsinghua University East Gate, FIT Building,
No. 1 Zhong Guan Cun Road, Beijing, China

Software Freedom Day is a global, grassroots effort to educate the public about the importance of software freedom and the virtues and availability of Free and Open Source Software. Local teams from all over the world organize events on the third Saturday in September. The most recent event involved over 200 teams from all over the world.

This year, Beijing LUG is organizing the Beijing Software Freedom Day together with COPU, CSIP, Tsinghua University and Ubuntu LocoTeam in Tsinghua University. Its objective is to promote and spread the spirit of FREE Software among the students and teachers in Beijing. If you are interested in finding out how FREE Software can make your dream come true, this is the one event you should go to!

During this half-day event you will meet individuals, communities and companies using Free Software everyday and explaining why they are doing so. They will also show you all the benefits they have gained from this extraordinary adventure and how to Join them.

So if you're curious, like to learn and discover new things and gets tons of free gifts, this is the place you want to be!

This half-day event will take you from normal computing to web development, gaming, mobile telephony and 3D animations. You'll learn how to get a better job, find people willing to help and support you within the communities. Just to name a few you will meet:

  • The famous free Office Suite called OOo
  • Solutions to browse the web, send email and manage websites that are all free
  • Professional 3D animations movies made from free tools and the chinese community supporting it.
  • Many more amazing stuff like 3D desktops and things you can only dream of, all this for free!

How to participate? Just show up! And don't hesitate to bring friends along.

How to get there? Just follow the directions on the map below:


What is Free and Open Source Software?

When we talk, in English, about "free software", there is a dangerous ambiguity, due to "free" meaning both "freedom" and "gratis". Therefore we will use mainly the term "open source" when referring to users freedom of use, redistribution, etc., and "gratis software" when referring to zero acquisition cost. Open source software does not have to be gratis. Even more, it usually is not, or at least, not completely.

The main features that characterize free (open source) software is the freedom that users have to:

  • Use the software as they wish, for whatever they wish, on as many computers as they wish, in any technically appropriate situation.
  • Have the software at their disposal to fit it to their needs. Of course, this includes improving it, fixing its bugs, augmenting its functionality, and studying its operation.
  • Redistribute the software to other users, who could themselves use it according to their own needs. This redistribution can be done for free, or at a charge, not fixed beforehand.

It is important to make clear that we are talking about freedom, and not obligation. That is, users of an open source program can modify it, if they feels it is appropriate. But in any case, they are not forced to do so. In the same way, they can redistribute it, but in general, they are not forced to do so.

To satisfy those previous conditions, there is a fourth one which is basic, and is necessarily derived from them:

  • Users of a piece of software must have access to its source code.

The source code of a program, usually written in a high level programming language, is absolutely necessary to be able to understand its functionality, to modify it and to improve it. If programmers have access to the source code of a program, they can study it, get knowledge of all its details, and work with it as the original author would.




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