Friday, September 12, 2008

Three Ubuntus walk into a bar...

Back in May, Presiding Bishop Kathleen Jefferts Schori of The Episcopal Church visited western Kentucky, where she had this encounter.

From May 16-18, accompanied by Kentucky Bishop Ted Gulick, Jefferts Schori traveled by car and then plane from Louisville to Paducah at the far western edge of the diocese and back, with a stop in between for a "Tent Meeting Episcopal Style" at the diocese's camp and conference center....

Gulick asked the presiding bishop at her first public meeting to "lend us your eyes" and help us see what you see. During the weekend, she complied and taught, among other things, the Zulu word, "ubuntu," which she translated, "I am because we are." Ubuntu expresses the concept of interdependence, which she said is "fundamental to our understanding of the body of Christ. When one part of the body suffers, we all do; when one of us rejoices, we all do."

She encouraged the diocese to "know something about ubuntu -- your work in Jubilee ministries, your focus on the Millennium Development Goals…You're beginning to know yourselves as Koreans, Sudanese, Karen, Chinese as well as Anglo…If we as individuals and as a community want to participate in God, then we too will be restless until all are at rest and comfort and healing of that holy community of God."

And yes, if you're playing the Jesus drinking game, the word Jesus appears exactly zero times in this article, which is three times less than she mentioned "ubuntu."

And you know how Schori encouraged the Church to know something about ubuntu? Well, Red Stick Rant noted that the Church has designed a logo for its next General Convention, with the word "UBUNTU" at the bottom of the logo. A lot of work was done to select the winning logo, and a wide variety of judges were used:

The entries were judged by the Very Rev. Canon Michael Battle, priest-in-charge, Church of Our Saviour, San Gabriel, California; the Rev. Dr. Fran Toy, president of the Episcopal Church's Asia-America Ministry Council; the Rev. Robert Two Bulls, director of the Diocese of Minnesota's Department of Indian Work and Mel Ahlborn, president and chief executive officer of ECVA. Wade Hampton, art director, digital communications, served as technical advisor.

Unfortunately, the judges did not include anyone who was an expert in information technology. Or a trademark lawyer:

Canonical owns a number of trademarks and these include UBUNTU, KUBUNTU, EDUBUNTU, and XUBUNTU. The trademarks are registered in both word and logo form. Any mark ending with the letters UBUNTU or BUNTU is sufficiently similar to one or more of the trademarks that permission will be needed in order to use it. This policy encompasses all marks, in word and logo form, collectively referred to as “Trademarks”.

Now, of course, it is doubtful that someone is going to confuse a Linux-based operating system with a United Nations - whoops, I mean a religious - movement. Problems only arise when trademarks cover similar products.

And perhaps Episcopalians and information technologists can find a common meeting ground:

Ubuntu Christian Edition is a free, open source operating system geared towards Christians. It is based on the popular Ubuntu Linux. Ubuntu is a complete Linux-based operating system, freely available with both community and professional support. The goal of Ubuntu Christian Edition is to bring the power and security of Ubuntu to Christians. Ubuntu Christian Edition is suitable for both desktop and server use. The current Ubuntu Christian Edition release supports PC (Intel x86). Ubuntu Christian Edition includes more than 16,000 pieces of software, but the core desktop installation fits on a single CD. Ubuntu Christian Edition covers every standard desktop application from word processing and spreadsheet applications to web server software and programming tools.

Along with the standard Ubuntu applications, Ubuntu Christian Edition includes the best available Christian software. The latest release contains GnomeSword, BibleMemorizer, BibleTime, and much more.

Ubuntu Christian Edition also includes fully integrated web content parental controls powered by Dansguardian. A graphical tool to adjust the filter settings has also been developed specifically for Ubuntu Christian Edition. These features are truly what sets Ubuntu Christian Edition apart.

So will the Episcopalians like this? It depends. Here's a description of how to implement Dansguardian:


/etc/rc.d/shorewall restart
/etc/rc.d/dansguardian start

You should see a "Access denied" page generated by DansGuardian. If not, you'll be exposed to gay porn which is why I suggest you to use elinks. ;) The domain is listed in /etc/dansguardian/bannedsitelist.

Well, it sounds like the default configuration of Dansguardian (and thus Ubuntu Christian Edition) is unsuitable for Episcopalian use.

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