Mozilla Firefox is my favorite browser, I edit Wikipedia and I use the Wayback Machine to retrieve lost webpages. These three components of the "free knowledge" or, better said, "libre knowledge" movement are all hosted by non-profit organizations headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area; respectively, the Mozilla Foundation, the Wikimedia Foundation and the Internet Archive.
I wanted to see what physically lies behind these three non-profits so today I set out on a trip to their headquarters.
Internet ArchiveThe Archive's headquarter is awesome. It occupies an imposing bright white building that used to be a Christian Science temple. When I arrived, there was a meeting going on dedicated to brainstorming what apps one could develop if really-high-speed internet (i.e. 1 Gb per second) were widely available. It turns out that the Archive has one such connection. I could visit the whole building without any trouble and took pictures of the auditorium where some servers are located.
|Front door of the Internet Archive's headquarters at 300 Funston Avenue, San Francisco.|
|Auditorium in 2nd floor of the building. Two sets of servers are visible in the background.|
|Some servers of the Internet Archive.|
|Computer with 1 Gbps download speed.|
Wikimedia FoundationThe WMF, as it is often shortened, has its office in an anonymous building in downtown San Francisco. Today it was a Saturday so it was closed and nobody was inside. I could only peek through the front door. More pictures of this office can be found in Commons, the media-hosting project of the WMF.
|The Wikimedia Foundation's office is on the third floor of this building at 149 New Montgomery St, SF.|
|Sneak view of the office through the main door.|
Mozilla FoundationI had planned to travel south to the headquarters of the Mozilla Foundation in Mountain View, at the heart of Silicon Valley (650 Castro St, suite 300). But I met a guy from this non-profit in the Internet Archive who kindly told me that their central office is just that, an office, with nothing to see. Thanks for sparing me the trip! I will leave you with a picture of the building that was uploaded to Commons by user Lukasblakk.
What nextThere are other major "libre knowledge" places in the San Francisco Bay Area that I would like to take a look at: the Electronic Frontier Foundation, in San Francisco, and Creative Commons in Mountain View.
By the way, this entry is released under a Creative Commons CC-BY-SA 3.0 license.