HackNY is delighted to announce a special addition to our 2013 speaker series: Richard Stallman. Richard Stallman will speak about the goals and philosophy of the Free Software Movement, and the status and history of the GNU operating system, which in combination with the kernel Linux is now used by tens of millions of users worldwide. This talk will be held at New York University’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences and open to the New York City Technology Community (space permitting).

Richard Matthew Stallman, also known as RMS, is a software freedom activist and computer programmer. Early in his career, he worked at the Artificial Intelligence Lab at MIT. While at MIT, he wrote the first extensible Emacs text editor and developed the AI technique of dependency-directed backtracking, also known as truth maintenance. In 1983, Stallman announced the GNU operating system, a Unix-like operating system meant to be entirely free software, and has been the project’s leader ever since. This marked the beginning of the Free Software Movement and in October 1985 he started the Free Software Foundation, of which he remains the president.

During his career, Stallman developed a number of widely used software components of the GNU system, the GNU Compiler Collection, the GNU symbolic debugger (gdb), GNU Emacs, and various other programs for the GNU operating system. The GNU/Linux system are used in tens or hundreds of millions of computers, but the distributors of these systems often disregard the ideas of freedom which make free software important. Since the mid-1990s, Stallman has spent most of his time in political advocacy for free software, and spreading the ethical ideas of the movement, as well as campaigning against both software patents and dangerous extension of copyright laws.

HackNY is thrilled to have Richard Stallman speak on August 5th to discuss the history and the future of the Free Software Movement. Please join us in welcoming Richard Stallman to the New York City Technology Community on August 5th at 251 Mercer Street, New York University Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, room 109 from 7-9 PM.