Saturday, November 21, 2009

Reaching the unreached!

Here is a little social science for a change! How is Tulsidas related to Linux anyway? For that matter Guru Nanak, Sant Kabir, Srimant Shankardeva..? or Martin Luther? There was a time when the Word of God was in few hands, and those few ruled over the minds of the millions. The few interpreted the Word in their own "Proprietary" manner and guided the destiny of millions around them to suite their own ends. Then came the great saints who demystified the Word and made it available to all people around them in common languages and dialects that people could understand. It was then that man started on a journey of communion with God on his own terms, in his own codes and in his own ways. It was 600 to 800 years ago when man was liberated from the clutches of the Proprietary Word by the great saints who broke that into commonly understandable code... Society is so much better today!

And so many centuries later today we are faced with a similar milieu of the proprietary Codes which are preventing the power of computing from reaching the millions around the world. The modern day saints (Richard Stallman, Andrew Tanenbaum, Linus Torvalds,...) of the cyber world have done their bit of demystifying the Code. May their tribe increase! And why the hell this tribe should grow? During the dark ages when so many people were ignorant, the few of those who had access to the Word exploited them like anything. The poor became poorer, and the few grew richer. When I look today, the situation is more alarming than that of the middle ages, as because then it was the ignorant who were exploited, but today look at the irony- the literate and educated are being exploited ! and you may just forget about the fate of the common underprivileged being! The numbers of such literate and educated exploited lot is so huge... (& you can recognize them easily in society!). I call this lot blind (for they do not see the Source Code), deaf (they do not listen, however hard you shout about open source), dumb (they do not want to speak about open source). {my apologies to the actually physically challenged persons. Hope they will forgive me}

Therefore, the task of spreading the good Word is daunting. We have millions of children who are awaiting the good Word. We need an army that has its basic senses right- it sees, it listens and it speaks and fights for the FREEDOM FROM proprietary SOURCE CODE.

We have a daunting task of Reaching the Unreached...