The Free World - Directory of Free Software/Culture Related Websites
Last updated: July 22, 2018
This page is a directory listing for websites and other resources on the topics of free software and/or free culture. The contents of this page are sorted by category and accompanied by descriptions and applicable warnings. I have made this page mostly for my own benefit, but also to help anyone in the free world find useful or interesting resources.
Just about anything that is related to free software or free culture can go on here. Additionally, other resources on things more tangenitally related to free software, such as digital cryptography/security, educational materials about programming and other topics, and even stores of general information, are, in my opinion, deserving of inclusion here. The whole point is to create a nexus that links to a great many resources that a person who is concious of their freedom and privacy rights will appreciate and can use. Licensing information, especially for resources that you are supposed to download to your local machine, is preferable. If you know of any sites that should be on this directory, E-mail me at erik (at) chowhowse (dot) com.
This category is for the websites of activist organizations, social programs, or movements that are related in a major way to free software/culture.
- The Free Software Foundation - The main organization fighting for free software, both now and historically.
- The Electronic Frontier Foundation - A group fighting for digital rights, mostly in the legal arena.
- The Software Freedom Law Center - An organization providing legal representation to free software projects.
- The Open Source Initiative - An organization that advocates for open source software, and that maintains the Open Source Definition license list.
- FreedomDefined.org - A project that provides a definition of free cultural works and evaluates free content licenses.
- Defective By Design - The most visible and consistent anti-DRM organization around.
Free Operating Systems
This category is for free operating systems. Note that not all GNU/Linux distributions are fully free (in fact, most are not). As such, I will not link all of them here. However, I am probably more lenient than some, and I am definitely more forgiving than the FSF. The main goal of this section is to document the OSes that make serious attempts to be fully free, rather than the somewhat more narrow category of OSes that succeed.
GNU/Linux Operating Systems
- The GNU Operating System - The original free operating system project. This site links to some of the other free systems that are linked in this section below, but not all.
- Debian - The Debian operating system. Though it does not meet the FSF's strict criteria for a fully free OS, default Debian is entirely free, and the Debian Foundation is one of the secondary authorities on free software.
- Trisquel - Trisquel is a GNU/Linux distribution that is fully free and FSF-endorsed.
- Parabola - Parabola is a fully free OS based on Arch linux.
- FreeBSD - A version of the Berkley Software Distribution. It uses its own, non-Linux kernel. While the FreeBSD system includes some non-free firmware by default, it is possible to compile it without this, resulting in a free OS.
- Replicant - Fully free operating system based on Android, running on certain smartphone devices.
This category is for the websites and project pages of individual pieces of free software. This category will likely grow extremely large. My intention is to limit the entries here to only those free software programs that are notable, useful, important, and/or have a dedicated website of their own (a GitHub page is not enough). I will consider the latter of those qualifiers to be the most critical, though if the program is important or noteworthy enough, I may include it here even without its own website. Consider this discretionary on my part. Note that inclusion here does not imply my endorsement of these programs, nor any favoritism by me. It is simply meant to be a potentially useful list.
- The Linux Kernel - The core component of GNU/Linux OSes, and a major piece of the puzzle towards making a fully free OS. Note that the designation of the Linux Kernel as free software is not without some controversy due to the inclusion of some closed-source binary blobs.
- GNU Linux-Libre - This is the Linux kernel expunged of all non-free firmware. Linux-Libre is distributed with all GNU/Linux distros that meet the FSDG requirements.
- Libreboot - A fully free BIOS/UEFI replacement.
Programming Languages, Tools, and Compilers
- GNU Compiler Collection - A collection of compilers for C, C++, and other languages, made for the GNU system and distributed with most GNU/Linux variants.
- Python - Python, a freely-available, high-level interpreted programming language.
- Firefox - Free software web browser, very full-featured and popular.
- Chromium - Free web browser by Google. It is the basis of the non-free Google Chrome.
- Lynx - Text-based web browser. It is the oldest web browser still in use and under active development.
- LibreOffice - LibreOffice suite of office productivity applications. Meant as a replacement for MicroSoft Office.
- NetHack - Nethack, a venerable roguelike game and one of the oldest free software games still developed.
- SuperTux - A platforming video game starring Linux kernel mascot Tux.
- The Battle for Wesnoth - Vast strategy game with excellent artwork and challenging gameplay.
- Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup - Roguelike game with a great UI and a large, involved playerbase.
- Xonotic - Multiplayer arena first-person shooter with fast-paced gameplay.
- SuperTuxKart - 3D kart racing game, actively developed and quite good-looking.
- 0 A.D. - Real-time strategy game with great visuals and a dedicated team.
This category is for sites that host news about free software, free culture, or other subjects of interest.
- LWN - Linux Weekly News. The main news organization covering events relating to the Linux kernel, and other related projects and subjects.
This category is for websites that present useful or otherwise desirable information as their main purpose. This can be encyclopedic articles, databases of info, free online books or educational materials, or something else.
- Wikipedia - An invaluable online encyclopedia. The articles are available under the CC-BY-SA 3.0 unported license.
- Project Gutenberg - Massive resource for freely available ebooks.
- Internet Archive - The Internet Archive tries to archive websites on the internet at large. Huge database of information that may no longer be available on the web.
Personal Sites & Blogs
This category is for the personal websites or blogs of individuals involved in the free software and/or free culture communities, or who might otherwise be considered notable in the world of free computing (such as perhaps historical figures or professors). Note that blogs for organizations would likely belong under another category. Also note that social media pages will not be included here. In fact, the sites typically refered to as "social media" will not be linked on this page at all, because of serious privacy concerns inherent in most of them. Any exceptions (such as, say, GNU Social) will be included in the Social Media section of this page.
- Richard Stallman's Personal Site - Personal website of Richard Stallman, founder of the FSF, GNU Project, and the free software movement.
- Eben Moglen's Website - Personal website of Eben Moglen, Law professor at Columbia University, Chairman of the SFLC, and former general counsel and board member at the FSF.
- Linus Torvalds' Homepage - This is an old personal homepage for Linus Torvalds, creator of the Linux kernel. It seems Mr. Torvalds doesn't much do the personal site thing, and this is the only site of his I found that wasn't a social media page (which he also does not seem to be active on).
- Lawrence Lessig's Personal Site - Personal website of Lawrence Lessig, Law professor at Harvard and major advocate for free culture.
- Bruce Perens' Website - Personal site of Bruce Perens, co-founder of the OSI and creator of the Open Source Definition.
- Eric S. Raymond's Home Page - Personal website of Eric S. Raymond, co-founder of the OSI, author of The Catherdral and the Bazaar, and a major developer and advocate in the open source world.
- Ebb.org - Personal website of Bradley M. Kuhn, President of the Software Freedom Conservancy, former Executive Director of the FSF, and author of the GNU Affero GPL.
- Kroah.com - Website of Greg Kroah-Hartman, developer extraordinaire and maintainer of the stable branch of the Linux kernel.
- Cory Doctorow's Craphound.com - Personal website of Cory Doctorow, journalist and copyright reform proponent.
- GNUMonks.org - Harald Welte's personal page. Welte is well known for his efforts to enforce the terms of the GPL, and for being involved in the Openmoko cell phone project.