My parents are here now - longer post with pictures of bears and so forth to come. However, a quick one - occasionally something happens that really demonstrates the point of open source. The soundcard in my desktop PC is a Chaintech AV-710, which I bought because it has excellent stereo output if you use a certain connector (which is run through a different DAC). However, after I got it, I found out you couldn't currently use this alternative output in Linux due to some kind of bug in ALSA. I filed a bug report on ALSA's site and got a bit of feedback from a developer, but no fix. Now a bit later someone else (unrelated to the project) came across the same bug, but he has more technical expertise than me; he figured out what was going wrong, posted a patch to my bug report, I downloaded the patch, rebuilt my ALSA driver, poked a few modules and bam, nice high quality sound. Can't do that without the source code!


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