flattr - A social payment service
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Hello?! … are you still there??
Great! Some months ago I read some news about these Piratebay guys that ruined with their BitTorrent tracker the whole movie and record industries. This time these news have not been about the next industry they are about to take down, but about that they seriously thought on how money could be transferred from the consumers to the producers in this cursed “all-for-free”-Internet. The result was a new service that is called Flattr and currently still is in beta phase. Kachingle is by the way another service of this kind, based in the United States while Flattr is – as Piratebay – of Swedish origin.
Are you a practice, clinic or any other health care institution that is using medical open source software in daily routine? And wasn’t it quite hard for you to find the right software, to get it up and running and to finally customize it to your needs without having any experienced users or reference sites at hand?
Even a high number of downloads or a strong ‘activity percentile’ of an open source software project doesn’t tell you anything about the suitability for your purposes and in general about the stability and efficiency that are required for successful clinical practice.
But what if you could see on a per-project basis at which site it is already deployed and even whom you could contact and ask for advice and personal experiences?
Medfloss.org (formerly medfoss.apfelkraut.org) should provide a comprehensive and structured overview of Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS) projects for the health care domain. Moreover it should offer a platform to foster the exchange of ideas, knowledge and experiences about these projects.
Medical FLOSS Portal at www.medfloss.org
For details about the offered features and services please refer to the Mission Statement.
Valkaama - the new Open Source movie
… and no worries, the movie is not about Open Source, but is released following the same principles than Open Source software. Beside the actual movie also all of its sources (like raw material of 173 GB in size, the script etc.) are freely available.
The title Valkaama is a composition of the Finnish words “valkama” (home) and “kaamos” (polar night). In a bit more than one and a half hours the director Tim Baumann tells the story of two very contrary characters that hook together not quite by accident to finally reach their ultimate destiny in Lapland. The drama is based on the novel “Valkama” written by Hendrik Behnisch.
The official trailer is embedded at the end of this post, you can watch the full movie directly at the homepage of Valkaama or download it via BitTorrent.
Once upon a time SourceForge.net used to be the biggest and most popular platform for Free Open Source Software (FOSS) in the world. Just in the field of medical FOSS they hosted more than 900 projects and in total more than 230,000 projects. People from all around the world could search for projects of interest, collaboratively develop them via the platform, seek for support or just download the source code or precompiled binaries.
SourceForge.net - former FOSS platform
This is now all gone. According to their recent blog post “Clarifying SourceForge.net’s denial of site access for certain persons in accordance with US law” they disallowed users from ‘rogue states’ to interact with their platform and since last week they are also automatically blocking any IP (visitor) from certain countries including Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.
It appears really strange to me that they still show phrases like “Find and develop Open Source software” or “SourceForge is your location to download and develop free Open Source software.” on their front page. I am not yet sure if they should add the note “… in case you are from a ‘good’ country” or better remove the term “Open”.
At least it is clear that it is not Open Source anymore what they are doing as they are infringing two of the most crucial principles of the Open Source Definition which read like this:
- “5. No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups: The license must not discriminate against any person or group of persons.”
- “6. No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor: The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the program in a specific field of endeavor. For example, it may not restrict the program from being used in a business, or from being used for genetic research.”
SourceForge seems not to be familiar with these and is blocking users to comply with the US law … and hell yes, the US is the country whose Secretary of State recently gave a widely honored speech about Internet Freedom.
Happily there are dozens of other real FOSS portals/platforms where you can now move to and host your FOSS project while preserving the original idea of Open Source.
Articles about this in German are available at golem.de and netzpolitik.org.