Luke Melia


September 6, 2002


I’ve been thinking recently about openness…. open technology standards, open debate, open lives….

At my job, we’re in the midst of a transition from unix-based technologies to Microsoft-based technologies. Unix platforms are mostly built on open standards. Microsoft’s ain’t.

An open standard happens when some people get together and hash out a proposal and then a bunch of others say, yeah, that’s a good idea. And then everyone can use the idea. That’s how the human race has made it this far. We share ideas about shelter and sustenance and health and love and government and more.

I didn’t realize how much I appreciated an environment of open standards and the spirit of technical cooperation until I’m faced with it going away.

George W. is trying to rush our country into a war on Iraqi soil. Thank goodness we have a congress that wants to investigate and debate the idea, and an international community which wields political pressure. If not, this action would be taken under the veil of secrecy that has unfortunately and unacceptably covered many aspects of this administration.

Openness. “Without obstructions to passage or view.” When you write about your life, you invite people to read, to participate. People keep personal journals in public for many different reasons. Some do it for a creative outlet. Some to help themselves reflect. Some for fun. I do it mostly to reach out and make my friendships more interesting and more multidimensional.

There’s still stuff I keep to myself, I guess. And not all software should be open source. And not all the president’s conversations should be a matter of public record. But, all-in-all, openness is a good thing to have a lot of in the world.

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