Browse Definitions :
Definition

Free Software Foundation (FSF)

The Free Software Foundation (FSF) was founded in 1983 along with its demonstration GNU project. Richard Stallman, an MIT professor, had worked as a student on projects where software was freely exchanged without copying or modifying stipulations. Why, he asked himself and others, should software users be prohibited from copying it for friends, looking at the source code and copying it, and redistributing the results? Taking this idea to the group level, Stallman and others created the FSF and set out to demonstrate that an entire operating system could be developed and shared freely. The result was the Unix-like GNU, which, in August 1996, became complete by adding a kernel.

The "free" does not mean at no charge. The Free Software Foundation does charge an initial distribution price for GNU. "Free" refers to the use the person who acquires the software has with it. The Free Software Foundation believes that individuals and society would benefit from, and moreover have the right to study a program's source code to discover how it works, to make changes that enhance the program in some way, and to redistribute and even to sell improved versions to others as long as they in turn make their software free of reuse restrictions.

This was last updated in September 2005

Continue Reading About Free Software Foundation (FSF)

SearchCompliance

  • information governance

    Information governance is a holistic approach to managing corporate information by implementing processes, roles, controls and ...

  • enterprise document management (EDM)

    Enterprise document management (EDM) is a strategy for overseeing an organization's paper and electronic documents so they can be...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

SearchSecurity

  • PKI (public key infrastructure)

    PKI (public key infrastructure) is the underlying framework that enables entities -- users and servers -- to securely exchange ...

  • obfuscation

    Obfuscation means to make something difficult to understand.

  • dumpster diving

    Dumpster diving is looking for treasure in someone else's trash.

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • call tree

    A call tree is a layered hierarchical communication model that is used to notify specific individuals of an event and coordinate ...

  • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

    Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) is the replication and hosting of physical or virtual servers by a third party to provide ...

SearchStorage

  • cloud storage

    Cloud storage is a service model in which data is transmitted and stored on remote storage systems, where it is maintained, ...

  • cloud testing

    Cloud testing is the process of using the cloud computing resources of a third-party service provider to test software ...

  • storage virtualization

    Storage virtualization is the pooling of physical storage from multiple storage devices into what appears to be a single storage ...

Close