On the Web

Can anyone rely on the government to be at the forefront of technological innovations?

The theme of our November 2002 issue was internationalization, and we were fortunate to receive quite a few interesting articles on the subject. One story in particular, Wayne Marshall's “Radio E-Mail in West Africa”, gave insight into how much we can accomplish when we are willing to shift our perspectives a bit and work with the tools available—in Wayne's case, HF radios capable of long ranges but little bandwidth. Unfortunately, space constraints in our print edition forced us to cut some of the details of the e-mail configuration used from the article. The long version, however, is available on our web site at www.linuxjournal.com/article/6299. If you're interested in the details of how Wayne's radio e-mail project came about or how the setup differs for incoming as opposed to outgoing mail, be sure to read “Radio E-Mail in West Africa: the Complete Version”. And be sure to check out the readers' comments at the end; a lot of people are sharing their unique communication setups.

On the topic of internationalization, Fred Noronha has been providing us with Linux and open-source news from India and neighboring countries. The grassroots support for software libre is strong, and even the government has expressed interest in moving their systems to open source. But are they serious? In a follow-up web article, “Indian Government's Reported Move Makes News, Then Fuels Skepticism” (www.linuxjournal.com/article/6389), Fred reports that many speculate the Indian government is simply using free software as a threat to get Microsoft to lower license fees or make a local investment. As one reader states, India cannot rely on the government to lead the Free Software movement. “So we the people will adopt free software and eventually the government will have no choice but [to] follow the people.”

Finally, we're certainly not opposed to stirring up some trouble; we just don't always know where it's going to come from. So quite innocently we announced the winners of the 2002 Readers' Choice Awards on our web site in mid-November in the form of a press release (www.linuxjournal.com/article/6380). We certainly weren't expecting the amount of reader comments we received—42 comments, to be exact, as I write this. So who comments on a press release? People who agree on one thing: our voters/readers are idiots because they didn't choose the correct winners. Some days it feels like we are all back in the sandbox, ready to hit each other on the head with our toy trucks if we don't get our way. So jump on to the article's web page and throw some sand yourself.

If you want to share the details of a unique system you've built at home or far away, drop us a line at ljeditor@linuxjournal.com. Remember to check the Linux Journal web site often; new articles are posted daily.

Heather Mead is senior editor of Linux Journal.

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