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Free as in Freedom [Paperback]: Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software Hardcover – 11 Mar 2002

4.7 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (11 Mar. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596002874
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596002879
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.1 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,294,423 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"....A worthwhile read for its chronicle of an important part of the free software movement as well as into Stallman as a person...." -- Jende Huang, Washington Computer User, Jun 2002

"'s a good summary of one of the software world's most eminent men. ..." -- Dave Symonds, Computer Science Undergraduate Society, May 2002

A good and important work. I recommend it. -- Joe Barr, Linux World, August 26, 2002

A mesmerizing biography of one of the most influential people in computer science. -- Ben Rothke,, March 2002

A nuanced, detailed picture of Stallman that includes much that will be new even to close followers of the free-software movement. -- Andrew Leonard,, April 2, 2002

His philosophy and work has surely secured him a legacy as a man who has altered the way we look at software. -- Jende Huang, Washington Computer USer, Jun 2002

If you are interested in the open source movement, likely you'll want to read this book. It's interesting, challenging, and easy to follow. -- George Woolley, Oakland Perl Mongers, Feb 2003

The biogrpahy is a must read if you are to understand hte origin of Linux and free Software. --

The book is a great read for geeks, enlightening us on our heritage. --

This is a book that moves with economy through the life of the world's most famous hacker. -- Marc Rotenberg, EPIC, April 2002


This text interweaves biographical snapshots of GNU project founder Richard Stallman with the political, social and economic history of the free software movement. Starting with how it all began - a desire for software code from Xerox to make the printing more efficient - to the continuing quest for free software that still exists today. The goal of the book is to document how Stallman's own personal evolution has done much to shape notions of what free software is and should be. Like Alan Greenspan in the financial sector, Stallman has assumed the role of tribal elder in a community that bills itself as anarchic and immune to central authority. This book looks at how the latest twists and turns in the software marketplace have done little to throw Stallman off his pedestal. Discover how Richard's childhood and teenage experiences as well as his years at Harvard and MIT made him the man he is today. The book's narrative style includes many quotes from Richard and his mother about his life, education, and work providing a look at RMS and Free Software Foundation (FSF).

Throughout the book are insights from FSF supporters, detractors, the early MIT hackers, and those who knew him in high school and college. If anything, the current software marketplace has made Stallman's logic-based rhetoric and immovable personality more persuasive. In a rapidly changing world people need a fixed reference point, and Stallman has become that reference point for many in the software world.

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9 April 2012
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
16 December 2002
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4 June 2002
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26 February 2003
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