Processing and FLOSS was a helpful reading in terms of understanding basic concepts and vocabularies of free software. It also led me to Why Open Source misses the point of Free Software, and my favorite part was when Richard Stallman clarifies the term “free” by saying “..think of “free speech,” not “free beer.”

Probably it’s another reason why FLOSS is FLOSS, not FOSS - to make clear that it’s about the ideals of liberty. This particular description about embedded ideology in software comes back in Taeyoon Choi’s Worms, Butterflies and Dandelions. Open source tools for the arts.

On another hand, such ideology can bloom and be maintained only after achieving certain conditions in social structure - which makes the use of term “ecology” understandable. Casey Reas says “This creates complex contingencies. If one of these parts stops being maintained or has an error, the other software within the ecology are affected.”; and I think this is a nice way to frame the relationship between different open source projects. The fact that it requires such social atmosphere shows its powerful side, but also how vulnerable it can be - often being misinterpreted as “free beer” to the society.