Gnu Public License

Topics: Free Software Foundation, Richard Stallman, GNU Compiler Collection Pages: 2 (633 words) Published: June 27, 2013
GNU Public License

Greg Scott


June 22, 2013
Prakash Pattnaik
GNU Public License
Study of software development and the free exchange of ideas promised by advances in computer technology were both slowed by the corporate privatization of operating systems. Companies wanted to keep the source codes of their systems secret and safe from manipulation. The sharing of information and open-source methods of the first pioneering programmers were brought to a halt by copyright and intellectual property laws. This changed the ways that software was developed, studied, acquired, and used. To save the open-source, free access methodologies that had brought about so many of the first advances in computer operating systems, Richard Stallman of MIT created the GNU project in 1983. Free as in Freedom

The GNU project’s goal, as part of the Free Software Foundation (FSF) also founded by Stallman, is “to create a free, open-source UNIXcompatible operating system,” (Silberschatz, Galvin, & Gagne, 2012, p. 38). The creation of the open-source system is designed to be a collaborative effort by any and all persons who wish to participate. The concepts of free software are best stated by the GNU Operating System website: Free software is a matter of the users' freedom to run, copy, distribute, study, change and improve the software. More precisely, it refers to four kinds of freedom, for the users of the software: • The freedom to run the program, for any purpose (freedom 0). • The freedom to study how the program works, and adapt it to your needs (freedom 1). Access to the source code is a precondition for this. • The freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor (freedom 2). • The freedom to improve the program, and release your improvements to the public, so that the whole community benefits (freedom 3). Access to the source code is a precondition for this. ( To avoid...

References: Free Software Foundation. (2013). The GNU Operating System. Retrieved from
Silberschatz, A., Galvin, P. B., & Gagne, G. (2012). Operating Systems Concepts (8th ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.
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