We need way better than a return to normal

We need way better than a return to normal

The lesson of the concurrent global crises is that the techno-utopian dreams of San Francisco bros are not going to save us. We cannot individually buy our way out of the crisis. As the saying goes, we are not safe until everyone is safe. The new realization that we are -- literally -- in this together is like everyone becoming a socialist overnight without fully understanding the implications. Yes, we are in this together and there are solutions.

Les boîtes Pine64: Bienvenue au monde merveilleux du logiciel libre

Les boîtes Pine64: Bienvenue au monde merveilleux du logiciel libre

Dans le cadre de mon zèle évangélique pour le logiciel libre, j'ai récemment envoyé à quelques amis et camarades un appareil Pine64 avec Linux préinstallé. Ces petites boîtes leur seront une introduction au monde du logiciel libre. Elles peuvent servir comme plateforme de jeu, comme serveurs, ou comme matériel informatique avec lequel on peut bricoler et, j'espère, s'amuser. Quoique vous ne soyez pas sur la liste pour recevoir un tel cadeau, vous pouvez toujours en commander un de Pine64, ou d'une autre compagnie qui vend les ordinateurs monocartes, et mettre la machine à l'épreuve.

Pine64 development box fun: welcome to the wonderful world of software freedom

Pine64 development box fun: welcome to the wonderful world of software freedom

As part of my evangelism around free software, I have provided several of my friends and comrades with one of two Pine64 devices with Linux pre-installed. These boxes are to introduce people to this world of free software (and the freedom it brings) and to provide a useful and (hopefully) a little fun computer/server/gaming platform to tinker with. While you may not be on my list of people who get one of these, you can always buy one from Pine64 (or another single board computer company) and take them out for a spin.

Ontario Tories destroy Laurentian University and the Northern communities it supports

Ontario Tories destroy Laurentian University and the Northern communities it supports

The news out of Laurentian is devastating. Unfortunately, the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) process that Laurentian was forced into by the government -- with an all too willing administration -- was always going to result in this kind of destruction. The CCAA process has been entirely inappropriate in its application to this public institution.

Industrial strategy, development, and the need for public production

Industrial strategy, development, and the need for public production

We are told that Capitalism, at its core, is a crisis-driven economic system. Crises are at the heart of its innovation, transformation of the economy, and are the reason creative destruction is the defining point raised by proponents of this economy-first, anti-social system. However, any reader of history knows that it is only through the leverage and investment of the state that capitalism can find the path around the economic crises it creates. Capital needs to be held-up and protected or -- like most short-sighted adventures -- it runs aground. The alternative is not to hold capitalism up, but to replace it and the response to COVID-19 shows a way forward.

Building a more open video conferencing and smart TV alternative

Building a more open video conferencing and smart TV alternative

The goal here is to build something that can operate with your TV/monitor and act as a dedicated box for video conferences using any platform you choose including the free and open source Jitsi Meet and Jami/Together. The experience of video calling at home while you sit on a couch or comfy chair is great. The entire experience on a larger than your laptop screen and quality sound really raises video chats with friends to as close to hanging out in your living room as possible.

Reading through the unprecedented: 2020 reads

Reading through the unprecedented: 2020 reads

Welcome to the end of 2020 where a pandemic made the first half of this year unprecedented, and the rest of it unbelievable, but devastatingly true. Last year, my end-of-year reading compilation was titled 'Reading Balzac in end-times'. So this year, I will avoid any attempt to sum up the dreadful, brutal year that was 2020. Here are my 2020 reads.