Re: TBTF Log for 1999-10-24

Robert Harley (
Mon, 1 Nov 1999 19:28:08 +0100 (MET)

Keith Dawson ( wrote:
>The Register carries this story [6] of ongoing French opposition to
>TBTF Irregular t byfield writes:
> Coming from any other country this would sound like utter
> madness, but coming from France -- where aggressive opposition
> to globalisme plays really well (cf. McDonalds) -- this isn't a
> joke. And it's not just wacky politicians hopping on the Linux
> bandwagon: [...]

What kind of idiotic caricature is this? And why is Keith repeating it?

The senators in question are seriously clueful. You can check out
Trégouët's Web site complete with up-to-the-minute newsletter where he
waxes lyrical about 73 GB discs, not-so-lyrical about gene patents and
touches on all happenings technical (Zeppelins included). This is the
most bit-laden newsletter I have seen in French or out of it. No
offense intended to TBTF.

These guys are proposing a law according to which all sorts of
government business should be doable electronically, playing off an
electronic signature law that is in the works. At the moment most
transactions with the state require ink stains on dead trees.

Freedom of information and government transparency requirements mean
that information has to be easily available and the availability
cannot be limited by the whims of software vendors, by patent
restrictions and so on.

That's why they want open software, and open standards to avoid
bit-rot and facilitate exchange of information. Somebody should pitch
them XML, although I suspect they know all about it already.

> the French are peeved in a maniere grandiose about US espionage.

Europe \ { UK } is mightily peeved, but the proposed law has
absolutely nothing to do with that.