Open Source and Free Software ConferenceTo Be Held at University of Toronto

Friday, March 05 2004 @ 11:35 PM CST

Contributed by: Linegod

Open Source and Free Software ConferenceTo Be Held at University of Toronto This May


A conference entitled "Open Source and Free Software: Concepts, Controversies and Solutions" will be held Sunday, May 9, to Tuesday, May 11, at Convocation Hall, 31 King's College Circle, University of Toronto. Open source refers to the practice of making public the code that makes software work, so that others are encouraged and empowered to review, critique and improve it. Open content, a similar approach used with
intellectual property like encyclopedias and electronic journals, will also be discussed.

The conference is the most comprehensive of its kind ever held worldwide. Other such events are almost all strictly technical. This one treats open source as a social movement. It integrates technical with legal, political and business issues. It discusses implications for health care, education and dissemination of public knowledge. The conference Web site may be viewed at The meeting will be attended by decision-makers, policy-makers and academics seeking to know the future of information technology, computer software and related intellectual property. Participants will come from the business, government, education and health care sectors.

"This event brings together the most knowledgeable and diverse set of speakers on these topics ever assembled under one roof," says conference chair Ron Baecker. "The ability to predict technology trends is critical to wealth creation and industrial growth. We have therefore included some of the world's foremost thinkers in high technology, intellectual property, and knowledge creation and transfer," adds Baecker.

Presenters will include computer scientists, political and social scientists, journalists, lawyers, business executives, entrepreneurs, industry analysts, educators and library information specialists.

Examples are Bob Young, co-founder of Red Hat, the world's most successful Linux company; Eben Moglen, Columbia law professor and General Counsel, Free Software Foundation; Berkeley political economy professor Steve Weber, whose Harvard University Press book on open source will appear in April; Brian Behlendorf, co-founder of the Apache Web Server Project; and Professor Derek Keats, recently chair of the first major African conference on open source.

Special discounted registration, at CDN$395 for the full conference, has been extended to March 19, after which the fee increases to CDN$495. Price at the door is CDN$595. Single-day and discounted volume registrations are available.

The conference is presented by the following organizations within the University of Toronto: Knowledge Media Design Institute, Connaught International Symposia Fund, Centre for Innovation Law and Policy, Citizen Lab of the Munk Centre for International Studies, Department of Computer Science, Information Policy Research Program, the University of Toronto Libraries and their Resource Centre for Academic Technology.

The support of these organizations is hereby acknowledged: Communications and Information Technology Ontario, IBM Centre for Advanced Studies, Linux Professional Institute, Seneca College, Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Trade, Caseware International, Novell, Inc., Openflows Networks Ltd. and The Commons Group.

Please contact:
Ron Baecker, Conference Chair, (416) 978-6983,
Kelly Rankin, Conference Coordinator, (416) 946-8512,