Peter’s Correspondence on the Actual Freedom List
Correspondent No 82
PETER to No 33: Following our recent conversation as to your flights of fantasy as to whether there is an actual flesh and blood body known by the name of Richard, I would point you to the following link which may be of interest: http://www.actualfreedom.com.au/sundry/orderformpaypal.htm
As you can see the video dialogues ‘Conversations about the human condition and how to become free of it’ are coming soon but we thought to post a sample excerpt of one of the conversations as a preview of what is to come. Peter to No 33, 11.7.2005
RESPONDENT: I’m looking forward to seeing this. Unfortunately, the video codecs used by Windows Media Player 10 (and above) are proprietary and cannot be viewed by people who use alternative operating systems, e.g., Mac, Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris, etc.
PETER: The sample will play in Windows Media Player 9 – and we have corrected this information on the website – and WMP 9 is available for the commonly-used domestic computer operating systems.
I also noticed that your post was entitled ‘Actually Free of Microsoft’. I am well aware that there are those who are antagonistic towards Microsoft and hence Microsoft products – and I have recently discovered a good deal of Sony-bashing and a good deal of entrenched resistance to the newly emerging HDV format – but it strikes me that your desire to be actually free of Microsoft is an exercise in futility in your lifetime as Microsoft seems to me to be doing rather well. Almost a century ago a man called Henry Ford had an idea to standardize automobile production in order that automobiles would be more widely affordable and accessible and the Ford Motor Company is still going strong … which in of itself may well indicate that you could have a long wait ahead of you in order to become ‘actually free of Microsoft’.
RESPONDENT: If the AF Trust has made a conscious decision to limit its publications to Microsoft-only document formats, it is of course none of my business.
PETER: There are many computer operating systems in the world ranging from the popular/domestic to the obscure/specialist but a multitude of other factors come into play as well – there are apparently over 300 media players available and at least 11 different video formats, 33 different video codecs not to mention at least 27 different audio codecs. The approach I took when considering producing videos for the Actual Freedom Trust was to chose a video format that offered the best quality that I could afford which would play on a freely available mainstream media player on an operating system that was the most widely used in order to make the information available to as many people as possible. I was well pleased when I found that I could afford to film in the newly emerging HDV (High Definition Video) format that is currently replacing the previous DV format as not only is the quality superior to DV but it also provides a degree of future proofing for the videos.
If one follows your line of reasoning about the Actual Freedom Trust ‘making a conscious decision to limit its publication’ because the Trust happens to chose to offer the video conversations in the best consumer quality currently available able to be played on a freely-available media player that is compatible with the most widely-used computer operating system currently used throughout the world, the very same objection could be made that the writings happen to be in the English language which – although it is rapidly becoming the de facto universal language on the planet – does mean that the Actual Freedom Trust publications are in fact limited to those who can read and understand words written in the English language.
The same objection could be levelled that the Actual Freedom Trust is limiting its publications by choosing to publish its writings on a website which means that one first needs to have access to a computer which has access to the World Wide Web … and then one needs the ability to operate the computer and utilize a web browser. The list goes on of course – we have even had objections to the font size on the website as we are apparently discriminating against those who don’t have reading glasses – or if they have reading glasses, don’t want to use them – despite the fact that the size of text can be easily altered in most, if not all, browsers and operating systems.
It’s a fascinating business being one of a few people presenting a totally new paradigm to their fellow human beings, in this case the possibility that one can now become actually free from the current universally-accepted human condition. Whilst I do acknowledge the inherent difficulties in understanding any new paradigm – the first difficulty being coming to grips with the fact that it is new – I do find it curious that not only do some people go out of their way to publicly denigrate those who offer this new information to their fellow human beings for their consideration but also that there are some who go out of their way to publicly criticize the manner, style and format in which those people choose to present the information to their fellow human beings.
RESPONDENT: I just thought it worth mentioning that an open data format would reach a wider audience.
PETER: I did a good deal of research before setting off on this enterprise and it became very clear to me that the onus lies on the minority of people who chose to use more obscure formats and less popular operating systems to find ways to utilize the vast amount of content that is provided for the majority who choose to use proprietary formats and popular operating systems. Indeed my research revealed not only a flourishing industry of ‘alternate’ computer technologies but an equally flourishing industry that provides products and services that allows ‘the alternatives’ to enjoy the products of ‘the mainstream’.
RESPONDENT: The same could be said about your journal samples using MS Word / MS Reader format instead of the ubiquitous and portable PDF, or even plain HTML.
PETER: We did look into PDF format but the cost of buying the PDF-publishing program was prohibitive, whereas the MS Reader program is free, both to the publisher and to the reader.
As for your suggestion that we provide the Journals in HTML format, it is not something we considered as the E-book format is the most common non-paper format in use that also manages to retain the experience that one is in fact reading a book – given that a book is something that offers a front-to-back coherent whole story.
Peter’s Text ©The Actual Freedom Trust: 1997-. All Rights Reserved.