Wishing a Happy Birthday to GNU

I’m currently in the Airport Lounge at Birmingham International awaiting my flight to New York for this years InterOp Expo in New York. If you’re going to InterOp yourself – get in touch, it’d be great to arrange to meet you whilst I’m there!

Now – although my company is a Microsoft Certified Partner and Small Business Specialist, our goal is to provide our small business clients with the software that best fits their needs – not necessarily Microsoft software, but whomever that software may be made by.

Whilst there are many occasions when Commercially (i.e. Paid for) Licensed software is the best fit, due to superior support, features or functionality – using software packages such as 7Zip (Open Source) instead of WinZIP, Foxit PDF Reader (Freeware) instead of the bloated Adobe Acrobat Reader, CutePDF Writer (mixture of Freeware and Open Source) instead of Adobe Acrobat and even Open Office (Open Source) instead of gasp… Microsoft Office… all examples of free alternatives to commercial software – can all mean the client saving a tidy sum of money without losing any of the functionality they actually need.

However, explaining to the client exactly what Open Source software is and what that type of license means can be a challenge at times – the mentality of “If it’s free, there’s got to be a catch” or “You don’t get a free lunch” can be difficult obstacles to climb.

But if there is one person who the British Public know and trust, it’s Writer, Actor, Comedian and possibly the smartest man on Television, Stephen Fry!

Therefore to celebrate the 25th Birthday of GNU – the most famous free software initiative – Stephen Fry has produced a video explaining what GNU and free software is, and why they are a good thing.

Now if we can just get Tom Hanks to record a quick video explaining Intellectual Property, and Dr. Stephen Hawking to explain Microsoft Licensing (which admittedly is a tougher subject to describe than Quantum Physics will ever be) we’ll be sorted!


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