[wos-announce] WOS4 goes tropical

Volker Grassmuck vgrass at rz.hu-berlin.de
Tue Aug 15 23:31:07 CEST 2006

== please redistribute  ==

Wizards of OS 4
Information Freedom Rules
International Conference
14-16 September 2006
in Columbia Hall Berlin

Four weeks to go till WOS4. We were thinking about holding a beach 
volleyball competition during the conference to prevent our joints 
from becoming rusty from all the sitting and talking and hacking, but 
if the temperature continues to drop at the current rate we might 
have to do with snow-ball fights instead.

Fortunately there is a tropical wind blowing into WOS4 from the 
Southern hemisphere. The digital revolution will definitely not be 
televised but if we believe Brasil‘s Minister of Culture Gilberto Gil 
it will be tropicalised. How does the spirit of funky samba and 
caipiroshka get into silicon and bits? Hear about it first hand from 
Claudio Prado, Head of the Department of Digital Culture at the 
Brasilian Ministry of Culture. On the final session of WOS4, „Brazil, 
the Free Culture Nation" [1], he will be speaking about hacking the 
government, spanning a network of free „culture points" across the 
country and achieving autonomy. The „pontos de cultura" [2] will be 
powered by the MetaReciclagem movement that Felipe Fonseca will be 
introducing, and, of course, by free software. Fernanda Weiden will 
be addressing the Women in Free Software Project that she founded in 

It‘s well known that free software is good for developing countries, 
because of its local- and customisability, its suitability for older 
recycled hardware, its community support and zero licensing fees. We 
will discuss this in the „Future of Free Software" sessions as well, 
that Linux Weekly News editor in chief Jonathan Corbet is chairing 
[3]. But what if you turn around and „free" versions of proprietary 
software come creeping up on previously free machines? Sergio Amadeu 
who was behind the local telecentro movement and then the national 
free software strategy in Brazil has the answer: You set up an NGO to 
train ten thousand young people to support GNU/Linux and then -- 
start an anti-piracy campaign.

Expect a lot of Brasilian grass-roots culture coming online from 
these „pontos de cultura" [2], including massively cool music. Berlin 
DJ and producer Daniel Haaksman has researched the Baile Funk scene 
of Rio de Janeiro and published a number of compilations [4]. He will 
not only talk about the culture and economics behind it but also play 
the first set at the party on Saturday night [5]. 

In the last announcement I promised to unveil some of the more unruly 
aspects of WOS4. In fact, every rule provokes its own transgression. 
Beyond what is permitted lies the largely unknown realm of the 
possible. What happens when we interpret information freedom in a 
radical way, and everyone can actually do what they like? We don‘t 
know, therefore we have invited radical researchers to shed light on 
this space of possibilities on the „Freedom expanded" panel [6]. What 
happens if one starts from the assumption that copyright has become 
untenable, as does Rasmus Fleischer from the Swedish Pirate Bay? What 
develops when you connect p2p networks to local micro transmitters? 
The artist group Bitnik knows a bit or two about it. What could 
emerge when you open source and interlink the millions of emedded 
computers that make the things around us ‚intelligent‘? That is 
exactly what Alexei Blinov is planning to do.

I was just kidding about the snow-ball fights. The first WOS 
participants from Brazil have arrived already, so we can expect 
Berlin temperatures to rise any minute [7]. Tatiana Wells and Ricardo 
Ruiz from Pipa in the North of Brasil have taken up residency at 
Tesla [8] in order to construct the Berlin version of their Urban 
Intervention and Information Correction Machine „mimoSa." They would 
like you to join them in the construction so that the machine will be 
ready to record our stories at WOS4. Watch this page for 
instructions: [9].

If you haven‘t fully planned your trips for the summer yet and enjoy 
event hopping, take a look at our calendar [10]. WOS4 offers a lot of 
opportunities for combination with events before, like ars 
electronica (Linz), the Eclectic Tech Carnival (Timisoara) and the 
6th international literature festival (Berlin). From WOS you can then 
go on to EuroOSCON (Brussels), OpComm (Berlin), Social Informatics: 
An Information Society for All? (Maribor) or Informatik und Ruestung 

You can‘t come to WOS4 at all? WOS4 will not be televised either, but 
it will be streamed. [11]

A final word on money. Models for generating income to make free 
culture sustainable will be a central issue at WOS4. But the 
conference itself has to be sustained as well. If you like what WOS 
is doing and are in a position to contribute to making WOS4 happen or 
know someone who is, we would love to hear from you. Here are a 
number of attractive options for supporting the conference: [12].

Don‘t miss it. Register now [13].

for the WOS team
yours Volker Grassmuck

[1] http://wizards-of-os.org/index.php?id=2313
[2] http://estudiolivre.org
[3] http://wizards-of-os.org/index.php?id=2323
[4] http://manrecordings.com/
[5] http://wizards-of-os.org/index.php?id=2886
[6] http://wizards-of-os.org/index.php?id=2325
[7] http://www.eurometeo.com/english/forecast/city_EDDI
[8] http://www.tesla-berlin.de
[9] http://wizards-of-os.org/index.php?id=2894
[10] http://wizards-of-os.org/blog/?m=200609&cat=9
[11] URL to be announced
[12] http://wizards-of-os.org/index.php?id=2902
[13] http://wizards-of-os.org/index.php?id=2170&L=3

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