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Free Ryzom Campaign now supported by the FSF [Update]

The Free Ryzom Campaign that I have mentioned earlier is now officially supported by the Free Software Foundation with a donation pledge of $60.000 (which now makes a total of ca. 134.000 Euros together with the contributions by many other people).

The Free Ryzom campaign was established to purchase the online game and universe known as Ryzom, property of the now bankrupt Nevrax company, and release the entire game as free software.

As stated by Peter T. Brown, Executive Director of the Free Software Foundation, the FSF considers the Free Ryzom campaign "a high priority project for the free software movement". The aim of the campaign is to publish the source code to the entire game under the terms of the
widely-used GPL, as well as publishing all of the artwork and other content under similar free licenses.

The Free Ryzom campaign represents a unique opportunity for the free software movement and the emerging free gaming field. A fully free MMORPG (massively multiplayer online roleplaying game) engine and client/server architecture would allow the development of a myriad of universes, each one evolving its own philosophy and unique content - but sharing in general technical improvements. If successful, this campaign would allow any user to create their own universe and produce their own content based on the Ryzom/Nevrax architecture.

The new goal is now to reach 200.000 Euros in order to increase chances to convince the judge to choose the Free Ryzom project as the new owner of the code and game data.

Pledges must be made within the next few days, since the deadline for the final bid is expected sometime before Wednesday, December 19th, depending on when the judges make their decision.

Good luck to the project!

Update 2006-12-14: Fix the numbers (Euro vs. Dollar messup). Thanks Ward Vandewege!

Creative Commons remix culture - a practical example

Autumn Leaf

As you might know I publish some of my photos in my photoblog and on flickr under a Creative Commons license.

A very cool example of the so-called remix culture "happened to me" recently — one of the photos I posted on flickr was used as album art for a music CD, namely J. D. Warrick's "Going, a. The Leaving".

Btw., if you want to learn more about remix culture, Creative Commons etc. I can really recommend Larry Lessig's Wizards of OS 4 Keynote titled "The Read-Write Society" (OGG video: 144 MB, MP4 video: 224 MB).

Free Software News and Advancements

No, I'm not dead, just very very busy...

There have been quite a few interesting new Free Software projects and news popping up recently (or I only recently noticed them):

CC Hits [Update]

I stumbled over CC Hits today, which looks like an interesting site with great potential. It's basically a digg-like site (implemented using ning.com, it seems) which doesn't list articles, but rather Creative Commons licensed songs. You can vote for the songs you like, just like you vote for articles on digg.com.

The site seems to be quite new, and there's not too much traffic yet, but I imagine it could become a very useful resource to find high-quality Creative Commons music. Which is similar to what I'm doing with my Creative Commons music podcast (subscribe here, yadda yadda), and most of the other CC music podcasts do, for that matter.

There's just too much CC music of varying quality out there by now — it's not so much a problem anymore to find some freely and legally available CC music (like it used to be a few years ago). It's more an issue of finding good music and/or music of certain genres you like... Anyways, I'm surely going to checkout CC Hits and use it to find new CC artists and songs for my podcast.

Oh, and if you have any suggestions for more sources for good CC music, please leave a comment.

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Update 2006-06-05: On a related note, here's a song for all the geeks reading this: Code Monkey (MP3, 3.6 MB) by Jonathan Coulton, Creative Commons licensed, of course.

O'Reilly Open Books Project

O'Reilly Open Books Project — complete O'Reilly books available online for free under the terms of Creative Commons licenses. Need I say more?

Some more (German) books are available from oreilly.de...

Thanks O'Reilly.

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