Libre Software Meeting 2004 conference report

By EDRi · July 15, 2004

The LSM conference has become an institution in France and around the globe. It all began in the year 2000 and has now become a well established meeting place for members and friends of the Free Software movement. Between 6-10 July 2004 about 700 persons gathered to discuss the bright future for users of Libre Software.

There were many very different subjects to choose from, ranging from accessibility to Content Management Systems, from law to music and other arts and from public administration to corporate business solutions.

Another important topic was education. It has always been a very important part of the ‘Rencontre Mondial du Logiciel Libre / LSM’ both in numbers of presentations and workshops and in numbers of participants. This year the EDU-conference was integrated into the conference – mainly in the big conference room. Some 50 percent of participants came from local French schools. The Abul Edu program is highly popular in all French speaking countries and offers a wide range of programs for learning, everything from spelling to mathematics. This year there were also demonstrations of solutions from Norwegian Skolelinux to LinEx in Extremadura, Spain and an Italian school using the Knoppix distribution.

A free music concert was announced for next year’s meeting. In music there has been a lot of fun and progress. The music workshops wanted more possibilities for inter-sector collaboration next year and everybody agreed that the time was really ripe for this and promised to make contacts between the ‘string holders’ for the different subjects for next years conference.

In the law sessions a lot was said about how to handle violations of the GPL and about trademark legislation. Under sessions for Libre Software for the blind, GNOME and KDE agreed to use common user interfaces. They also found that the speech synthesis program ‘Festival’ was the best choice to elaborate on for the future.

The African delegates talked about sustainable development and announced a ‘Free Software Day’ during a conference from 28 September – 6 October 2004, with popular demonstrations of programs in a big party atmosphere.

The conference days offered a wide range of old and new topics and a physical atmosphere of well being and possibilities to make contacts with old and new friends. In the main lobby of the university of computer science, ENSEIRB of Bordeaux there were stands for many French organisations and LUG’s. This turned the Agora into a lively bazar.

Next year’s conference will be held in Dijon.

Program overview (15.06.2004)

Rencontres Mondiales du Logiciel Libre (in French)

Presentations in the law track

General information about the AbulEdu program (in French)


(Contribution by Anne Østergaard, member of the GNOME Foundation and the GUADEC 5th Planning Committee, vice-chairman of IT-Politisk Forening,