It’s hard not to sympathize with this idea!

Venezuela Promotes Microsoft Alternative
– By JORGE RUEDA, Associated Press Writer
Wednesday, March 29, 2006

(03-29) 16:11 PST CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) —

President Hugo Chavez, long critical of big transnational companies, is promoting free open-source software as an alternative to market-dominating Microsoft Corp.

Venezuela’s science and technology ministry recently held the Latin American Free Software Installation Fair, an event promoting the use of the open-source Linux operating system and other nonproprietary programs over Microsoft’s Windows.

Groups of Linux users have been organizing similar events in other Latin American countries, including Argentina and Colombia, and the Venezuelan government has signed on as a promoter.

The technology ministry said the fair is part Venezuela’s move toward “technological sovereignty, and taking advantage of knowledge for building national scientific independence.”

Chavez, a vehement critic of the capitalist system, issued a decree in 2004 ordering all the country’s public institutions to actively move toward open-source alternatives, hoping to save millions of dollars.

Government agencies have gradually been making the change.

Chavez says previous governments spent more on licensing fees for proprietary software than social programs to fight poverty.

The Venezuelan government hasn’t focused direct criticism on Microsoft, but Chavez has regularly condemned “the hegemony of the multinationals” — saying many big companies are to blame for putting profits above the needs of poor people across Latin America.


English can be strange!

Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a tlotl mses and you can sitll raed it wiuthot porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe, and the biran fguiers it out aynawy. WOW! Thuohgt you wulod lkie tihs one.

Fossil fuels

I’ve just finished reading “The Long Emergency” by James Howard Kunstler. Thanks to Tim Schlitzer for recommending it. It has changed the way I view the world. I used to think our very comfortable standard of living (when compared to our ancestors and most of our contemporaries) was based on the efforts and achievements of our predecessors, the result of linear human progress which would continue well into the future barring nuclear war or environmental degradation. This gave me hope that humans would overcome the challenges of war, terrorism, climate change, etc.
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Cultural lag, a lethal drag

We’ve adapted to all the new hi-tech toys of the 21st century, but aren’t so quick to accept scientific evidence that we’re cooking the planet and endangering humanity, says CLIVE DOUCET

Globe & Mail, Monday, May 23, 2005 Page A13Key

Cultural lag is the term first coined by anthropologists to describe the gap between an invention and society’s ability to actually use it. It took about 50 years for the typewriter to displace the pen, and initially women were thought much too feeble to manipulate it. It was a man’s machine.
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Dear Dad

A father passing by his son’s bedroom was astonished to see the bed was nicely made and everything was picked up. Then he saw an envelope propped up prominently on the center of the bed. It was addressed, “Dad”. With the worst premonition, he opened the envelope and read the letter with trembling hands:
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Yesterday I met a journalist….

Yesterday I met a journalist named Sarah Evans, 23. She is an intern at the Town Crier group of local newspapers. She is writing an article about my new venture, Family Memories. We met at the Indigo Book Store Starbucks at Yonge and Eglinton here in Toronto. Sarah used a tape recorder to record our interview.

What is terrific about Sarah is that she has had Cerebral Palsy since she was a year old. She can only get around in a wheel chair and has difficulty moving her hands and speaking. She gets around on Wheel Trans, the Toronto Transit Commission’s service for the disabled. It’s an excellent service but she must book it 24 hours in advance.
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Will the Internet end war?

Communication is the key to understanding and language is the key to communication.
Without a common language it is very difficult to communicate.
Without communication there is no understanding.
Without understanding there is suspicion.
Suspicion leads to distrust.
Distrust leads to hatred.
Hatred leads to violence.
Violence leads to suffering and death.
Suffering and death lead to revenge.
Revenge leads to more suffering and death and a continuous cycle of violence.
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More Photos

A Tribute to Jean’s Marines (Slideshow)
Rick Jackson’s Surprise Party Aug 14, 2005
Gay Pride Parade
Charles Knox Brown 1927-2005
Dyke March
Black Watch Annual Christmas Luncheon
After Dark
Internet Technology Meetup May 11, 2005
Ontario Prayer Breakfast May 4, 2005
Little Redstone Lake
Montreal, April, 2005
The Thousand Islands
The Simpsons & Vaughans, April 2005
The Marginal Way
The Two Bettys in Cuba
Bev’s Birthday
British Columbia
My Birthday February 2005
Mount Royal
Cross Country Skiing in Lindsay
The Morrissey’s
Westmount Park
The Berys
Christmas Eve in Rosedale
James Fukuhara
Sivananda Yoga Centre
St. Christopher House Volunteer Meeting
Scotia Bankers
Harbour Cruise
The Moirs
St. Christopher House Community Sweep
The Foremans at Gananoque
Catherine Goodfellow / Darryl Lunn Wedding
St. Christopher House "Pictures for Life"
The Simpsons at Little Redstone Lake
The Goodfellows at Gananoque
The Bell Walk for Kids
Family & Friends in Toronto
The Foremans & Friends over the years
British Columbia
The Whiff of Grape
The Gignacs
The Montreal Triathlon
Halloween Party
Dick Bourne’s Free Lunch
The Royal Montreal Golf Club
Cross country skiing at Val Morin