Libre software and moral absolutism

I’ve been pondering what to write in my blog now that I no longer lead Adélie Linux. There isn’t a great amount of things to write about around my day job making libre networking software, and there’s even less to write about my “spare time” projects. (Mostly because that spare time is spent playing with my cat, my Mum, or my video games.)

I had originally planned for this blog to cover travel and photography around Oklahoma in addition to tech. For obvious reasons, this isn’t something I’m able to do at this time. There are only so many ways I can photograph the gardens around my flat, and inter-city (let alone inter-state) travel is not exactly possible in 2020.

There are actually a lot of tech subjects I would love to cover, but a lot of them revolve around non-libre software. After spending so many years in the communities I have, there seemed a very real sense of shame in the thought of writing about it. However, the more I’ve thought about it, the more I realise it is not shame I feel.

It is embarrassment. It is a sense of letting my friends and colleagues down by feeling anything other than contempt for running proprietary software.

But I do. I absolutely enjoy using my iPad Air 2. And I have dozens – maybe hundreds – of articles in me about retro computing with classic versions of Windows, Mac OS, and Solaris. Game consoles are another fun hobby of mine that I want to share more widely.

So this is the dilemma I face. To continue to write nothing but articles about Linux would be to hide a part of me that is real. Is that what I want from my life? I don’t think it is.

This is not a rebuke of libre software, nor is this some admission there is nothing left to write about it. The future will always be bright with libre software, and I have plenty of articles left in me with regards to libre software, I’m sure. But I think it’s about time for me to admit to myself, and the world, that I have other technological passions as well. And it’s time to stop being embarrassed about it.

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