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Brave GNU World - To all authors of Free Software and Free Documentation

Oct 15, 1999, 15:58 (0 Talkback[s])

Hi Everyone !

A little more than half a year has passed since my last posting of this kind so I figured it is kind of time for a short introduction into the "Brave GNU World" again and I will give a short resumee.

The "Brave GNU World" (http://www.gnu.org/brave-gnu-world/ ) is the monthly GNU forum and its topics range from features about new or upgraded software to philosphic and legal questions.

Every author of a free project (this means everything covered by the GPL or LGPL plus other free licenses), be it a program or some piece of documentation, can get a feature in the Brave GNU World, you only need to send mail to with a description of your project. Pretty much anything that gets posted to the announcement mailinglists or newsgroups could also get sent to . Of course there is only limited space in a monthly column, so only under the most extreme circumstances something would be featured more than once a year.

The perfect time to get a feature on the column would probably be when your project has made a major step (its up to you what a major step is) because this will usually make for a much more interesting feature. This is not mandatory, though.

Either way: The column offers the possibility to introduce your project to a rather big audience in a good way.

How big exactly is the audience? This brings me to the resumee part...

The column started as a bilingual project (English and German) that was printed in Germany biggest GNU/Linux magazine, the "Linux-Magazin". Since then I have received a lot of positive feedback and many people have volunteered to participate in it.

By now there are about 30-40 people more or less active in the creation of the column - some are translators but the biggest chunk are proofreaders who give me valuable positive input. Without them I would not have been able to keep it up the way it is now - thanks a lot!

Due to this effort the column is available in English, German, French, Spanish and Japanese now - which means it covers a lot of the world population (Chinese may be missing). It is printed every month in the German "Linux-Magazin" which is _the_ GNU/Linux magazine in Germany (they also organize things like the 520-node GNU/Linux cluster in 1998) and in a French GNU/Linux magazine. There may be more that I do not know of since reprinting is legal without any restrictions.

How many people read the web version is hard to guess - especially since the column is mirrored in full text on the Linux-Magazin webserver, the Linux Weekly News and all the GNU mirrors (doh!). The announcement mailinglist for the Brave GNU World does hold some hundred people but some of them are redistributors like LWN - so there is probably no way of finding out the exact number of readers.

But at least part of the impact can be estimated: The fourth issue of the column contained a feature about "Aegis", a rather special project for sourcecode/project management and the author Peter Miller sent email that he received 2000 hits above usual after the column came out and he holds the Brave GNU World reponsible for all of them.

Another thing that came out of the column was the "We run GNU" Initative (http://www.gnu.org/brave-gnu-world/rungnu/ ) which resulted in some very nice motives and some interesting email conversations.

Anyway: If you would like to raise your (and/or your projects) profile, see some questions answered about the GNU Project / Free Software or are looking for people to help you with a special project, sending a mail to should become your first instinctive reaction. :-)


Georg C. F. Greve greve@gnu.org
"Brave GNU World", the monthly GNU forum
in English, German, French, Spanish and Japanese.
Check it out at http://www.gnu.org/brave-gnu-world/