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Importance of Free Information

I have never been a die hard FOSS guy. I don't even remember attending any FOSS conferences or joining a FOSS community. But as an observer, I deeply value its presence and its motive. FOSS is about freedom in information and its owner ship to the audience. Allowing users to have complete control over the information fosters innovation and provides better opportunities.

The freedom in information does not only means source code or design blueprints, but every aspect of knowledge. Knowledge has to be shared freely and openly to public. Here, I am not pointing to wiki leaks phenomenon or other piracy issues, but simply the openness of valued information.

I remember getting fully excited during my A levels , when I heard that MIT will be sharing their lecture videos and materials to the public under the name of Open Course. As I was deeply interested in learning more about science and technology, I thought this was the greatest news. It meant I no longer had to beg for knowledge. It gave me huge opportunity to explore the horizon of science without being restricted or questioned. I believe every form of education has to be that way, unrestricted.
Photo attribution: http://www.flickr.com/photos/koencobbaert/

Prior to this news, I use to visit British Councils and other libraries in search of good books and envied the pricing tags it use to bear. I hated being unable to own them and access the knowledge. Often I would borrow books and take home to study. I would then spend hours coping the content of the book into my thick notebook, just to make sure I owned it. I think I still have those notebooks, where I drew every figures and charts in the book. It gave me sense of ownership which I enjoyed a lot.

Now I try to trace my childhood and remember that I had done similar activities when I was in grade 3/4. I had borrowed a story book from my friend to read. Because I enjoyed the story so much, I decided to copy the whole story in my notebook in beautiful handwriting :). It was a story of "The Story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears".

This brings me to say that knowledge should not be a privilege but a right to everyone. No one in this world should be valued based on their basic knowledge. In this I don't mean that every companies need to share their secret chemicals. I mean to say that, any kind of information that deprives human from extensive knowledge benefiting a single identity needs to be challenged and shared freely.

There is more I want to share about my thoughts on the fabric of economy and how it can be disrupted by information. But for this post, I simply wanted to give a perspective on the need of free information.


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