Welcome to the official new GNOME board!

As we just posted on gnome.org, the Elections Committee announced the official results of the GNOME elections this week. The new board members are:

  • Emmanuele Bassi
  • Joanmarie Diggs
  • Seif Lotfy
  • Shaun McCance
  • Tobias Mueller
  • Andreas Nilsson
  • Bastien Nocera

It’s a lot of commitment and effort to serve as a Director, so these people (and all of the candidates) deserve a big thank you. In particular, the outgoing directors need special mention – Brian Cameron, Ryan Lortie, Stormy Peters, and Germán Póo-Caamaño all have worked so hard and have given so much over the past year(s). Join me in thanking them!

A heartbreaking look at software patents

My friend and former colleague from SFLC, Dan Ravicher, wrote to me about this little girl who relies on an app to speak. The app is under threat for patent infringement and Apple has already removed it from the itunes store. This story has already got some press, but now the app has actually been removed from itunes, and the parents are worried that Apple will remotely update the device to remove it. What amazes me about this story is that it echoes some of my own feelings towards my pacemaker/defibrillator. It shows how real people are increasingly relying on technology that they have less and less control over for extremely important aspects of our lives. While malfunction of the app isn’t a concern for this family in the same way it is for medical devices like mine, they live in fear that one day their daughter’s voice will just stop working and there’s very little they can do about it. It’s another side of the software patent issues and lockdown that I really hadn’t considered before. Many thanks to Dan for his work with the Public Patent Foundation.

Help GNOME reach its accessibility fundraising goal!

We just posted this item on gnome.org:

We’re closing in on our goal of $20,000 for our accessibility campaign. If you haven’t already, take a look at the testimonial by Diego Sánchez that we’ve been lucky to include. As Diego says, GNOME 3 has really helped him: “I’m happy because I can now use the computer in my classroom without any assistance.” Our accessibility team‘s work has made a big difference in many people’s lives, but we still have a long way to go. Help us make our goal and donate now via our Friends of GNOME program!

If you haven’t given the our accessibility campaign already, I encourage you to do so! I am so inspired by the work that Alejandro Piñeiro, Joanmarie Diggs, Juan José Marin and the rest of the team do. Thanks again to Robert Cole and Diego Sánchez for allowing us to highlight how much GNOME and GNU/Linux has meant to them.

Texas Linuxfest

Nathan Willis just filled me in about the Texas Linux Fest, which is going to be on August 4th in San Antonio. It’s right after GUADEC (and I won’t be able to go since travel will then be off limits for me!) but the CFP is open until June 15th. I hope that some GNOME folks are able to submit talks or go!