Hi Dr Adler,

I'm an anonymous reincarnation of the Buddha and an understudy to Faust who
cares nothing for computers and knows less about the internet, but reading
your very long "ode" (I hate to have my errors pointed out to me, so I hope
you hate it, too) I have to put in my two yen worth.

What is freedom? Permission to do what you want? Hmmm... I don't think it
says anything really useful or to-the-point in the US constitution (or any
other country's for that matter) on the subject of freedom. Sure, it
rambles on about rights and equality and justice, but does it get to the
heart of the meaning of freedom? It's a consititution, after all. It's
telling me what I have the right to do. Is that freedom?

Freedom is in action, not in concepts. I have had the honor of contributing
to your "virtual" discussion about the internet in the past, and at the risk
of boring your readers I will repeat myself. If you want to make, say, the
"code" of "windows" (or whatever the technical terms are) "open," or "free,"
or whatever, don't wait around for suits with briefcases in a court of "law"
to allow you to see it. I mean, what did you spend all those years in
college learning? Use your computing skills to steal all the code and put
it someplace everyone can see it. (Or whatever it is that makes it free.)
If you want to change it and make a different program, do it.

Just make sure you don't get caught.

Because that's the key to freedom: not getting caught. The only true
freedom is anarchy. In society it would lead to lawlessness and make the
places we live a virtual (oh, sorry, I can't use that word in its original
meaning anymore, can I?) battleground of violence and death. (Oh, wait a
second. We seem to have managed to make our country that way anyway,
haven't we? But it's just the poor non-whites who are killing each other,
isn't it? Alas, the white man's burden never ends...) The fanatastic
opportunity that the internet is presenting us with is a realization of pure
freedom. Take the tools you have and do what you want. How far you go, to
what extent your actions will benefit or harm others, etc, these questions
are a personal matter of conscience. I'm an optimist. I think humanity
will have its fun on earth then self-destruct and make way for the next
contestant. Sooner or later, it doesn't matter. But while you're here, do
what you can.

Maybe that was a bit more than two yen worth, but for what it's worth,
that's what it is.