One reason you should not use web applications to do your computing is that you lose control … It’s just as bad as using a proprietary program. Do your own computing on your own computer with your copy of a freedom-respecting program. If you use a proprietary program or somebody else’s web server, you’re defenceless. You’re putty in the hands of whoever developed that software.
The FSF itself created a license for web applications called AGPL which is used by projects like identi.ca, so this little rant really surprised me. Why do you create a license for some kind of software if it is evil anyway?
I could agree with Stallman on many issues but clearly not on this one. While it is true that we don’t have control over our data, applications aren’t available on every PC, obviously not everyone is able to set up his own server and/or build personal web applications. I run a couple of applications namely irssi, mutt, ejabberd and my webdev environment on my personal server right next to me and Ubuntu does a great job helping you to set all of those things up, but you simply can not expect all people to learn how to set up servers, bother with ports and ips and dynamic dns. This isn’t Sparta but it still is madness.
What’s next? Should I produce my own electricity, drill for water and get some cows living in my flat? I really don’t think so.