[Chtechcomm] Open source beer
tbuckner at ibiblio.org
Thu Oct 20 12:35:56 EDT 2005
In tribute to the committee's open source initiative......
From the Chronicle of Higher Ed:
Ale's What's Good for You
By AISHA LABI
There may be no such thing as a free lunch, but free beer? That's
another matter entirely, thanks to some students at the IT University of
Charged with applying principles from the free-software movement to
something tangible, the students devised an "open source" beer recipe in
a workshop on intellectual-property and copyright issues.
"Beer seemed like the appropriate universal medium," says Rasmus
Nielsen, a Danish artist who helped teach the course. "It's a university
situation and beer is popular."
Vores Øl, literally "Our Beer," is a thick, malty concoction flavored
with the caffeine-rich guarana berry. The recipe and downloadable labels
are available on the beer's Web site (http://www.voresoel.dk), where
would-be brewers are advised, "You are free to earn money from Our Beer,
but you have to publish the recipe under the same license ... and credit
Mr. Nielsen says the project was a knowing nod to celebrated statements
by Richard Stallman, a pioneer of the free-software movement, and Linus
Torvalds, who designed Linux, the world's best-known open-source software.
"To understand the concept [of free software], you should think of 'free
speech,' not 'free beer,'" Mr. Stallman famously said. "I'm interested
in free beer," was Mr. Torvalds's rejoinder.
Vores Øl may be free, but it is no ordinary ale. "It's about beer as a
way of discussing copyright issues," says Mr. Nielsen. "Beer is not the
message. It's just the medium."
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