Good of the process

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Tue, 10/12/2004 - 02:57.

The best
part of the REALNEO project to date is working much more intimately with open
source projects and leaders, and the personal freedom and insight that offers
me. Anyone in NEO who gets involved with REALNEO will share in this wonderful
experience of evolution, learning and empowerment – those left behind are truly
deprived in important ways.

I’m very
impressed with the technologies we’re assembling, and I’m enjoying getting off
legacy, proprietary systems as fast as possible. We’re running on Linux, and
Apache, and my SQL, and PHP, browsing in Firefox. We’re using Drupal and
starting to work with a half dozen other great projects that are making IT
better for the world, and the world better for all people – this is where Earth
is being reengineered by the next generation. And no Microsoft anywhere… no cost
anywhere, yet …I’ll pay Bryght and others for enhancements along the way, but that is
really a contribution to a greater cause.

You’ll
be surprised by the flexibility this offers. Tomorrow Boris and I are conducting
design review from Cleveland and Vancouver for free, over Skype, and other
REALNEO members could dial in. All REALNEO members will be able to add Skype
free to their identities and desktops and use that for both free calling and
teleconferencing… locally and worldwide.

Our
development site (which had some formatting problems, fixed) so far only uses a
fraction of the capabilities available with Drupal alone. For a taste of next steps, take a look at the Drupal
Themes “garden� to see how easy it is for end users to change the look and feel
of the framework - http://webschuur.drupaldevs.org/.
Being part of a global open source community, we have access to the work of all
developers working with this project, so enhancements like new themes and
modules will pop up all the time, and very exciting developments are in the
works

<>In NEO, where open source is new buzz, it’s hard to imagine that world-wide
at 10 PM tonight there were over 600,000 Skype users online, and around 4 this
afternoon there were over 2.2 million Grokster (P2P file sharing) users
exchanging over 2 billion files – 69 million GB of data. For further context,
consider I started the day fulfilling an assignment for a Harvard Law School
open source learning extension project, H2O, added the CEO of Sun’s blog to my
bookmarks, joined a truly expert roundtable on eVoting at Siliconvalley.com,
read some syndicated news feeds offering better insight than the PD and followed
several open source development discussions in less time than most people spend
reading the paper, or watching Monday Night Football. I gained much more from my
experiences than is possible reading one print newspaper or watching anything on TV, and the
world gained from my participation.

Few old
paradigm leaders can relate to or want any of this. Most can’t grasp IT much
less open source and they see it change paradigms they like. Whether they run
SBC, or the newspapers and radio and TV stations, or an advertising or PR firm,
or universities that must now compete with Harvard, Stanford and MIT for
attention on their own turf, of they’re just good old politicians, teachers,
lawyers and doctors who’ve stopped learning, or liked the simple, ignorant old
ways of their good old days… I understand the resistance, and I also understand
how deprived this leaves NEO’s future leaders and citizens now cut off from the
future, and how this ultimately hurts the community and our economy.

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