Infinite Hands

Singing a part of the history of free software

by Draketo aka Arne Babenhauserheide

Free Software version of Finity’s End, original lyrics: CJ Cherryh, music: Leslie Fish.

Infinite Hands

Infinite Hands build a world to be free,
the digital space we all know,
unlimited use has the code that we write,
and freedom’s the badge we all show.

The stuff runs our servers, our desktops and grids,
by uncounted hands it was made,
set out in the wild on the day it is born,
for our free running, long coding trade.

And no law shall bind us or keep us for long,
for infinity’s ours and infinity’s free,
and no company owns us, and no land’s our own,
for Infinite Hands are we.

The companies thought that they’d pay us for lines,
and have all the code for their own.
„You’re company people and company teams,
your code will now serve us alone.“

R. Stallman was only a student that day,
and he said to himself, thinking deep:
Farewell to a job, all my code shall be free,
for what they don’t own, they can’t keep.


The miracle came, he did not change his mind
and gathered around him a crew,
and people could buy his free programs from him,
sent by mail and his money got through.

At times others came and they said, „We’re free, too,
you can take code as if in a mall.
It will be only yours then, just say it’s from us,
and it runs and compiles where you call.“

-Ref: But… –

Now Richard M. Stallman was vexed and annoyed,
and he sent out the word as before:
„All code must be free, free to use and improve,
which our license ensures evermore.“

But still many coders were lured from our ranks,
now for Windows and Apple they strived,
their call to wake up came from finland one day,
as to GNU a free kernel arrived.

-Ref- (percussion)

We open our source as an act to be free
from chains of lock-ed down trash
but some people lost the philosophy
and started to see only cash.

So the term „Open Source“ became marketing slang
from people who seemed to be guides,
but freedom, or social, or changing the world? (spoken)
They talk about money, not rights.

-Ref- (vocal)

„Then patent it all“, came a call spreading wide,
„for money is all you should see“,
but Richard M. Stallman still sent out the word,
that all code from now on must be free.

So code would stay free and our teams did grow strong,
but some loopholes remained in our side,
which traitors like TiVo exploited to steal,
so we needed a change in the right.

– Ref-

… no words …

So our license reshaped by the people and GNU,
for code contributed to trade,
and orders be none to withhold us or bind,
no law on our code but the license we made.

Just that law shall bind us and keep us for long,
for infinity’s ours and infinity’s free,
and no company owns us, and no land’s our own,
for Infinite Lines are we.
are we, for Infinite Lines are we.

Check-out the appropriate Free License when reusing this song.

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