Free Software Foundation (FSF) grants two annual awards. Since 1998, FSF has granted the award for Advancement of Free Software. Since 2005, it has also granted the Free Software Award for Projects of Social Benefit.
From 2001 to 2005, the award has been presented in Brussels at the Free and Open source Software Developers' European Meeting (FOSDEM).
In 2006, and 2007 the awards were presented at the FSF offices in Boston.
Advancement of Free Software awardEdit
This is annually presented by the Free Software Foundation (FSF) to a person whom it deems to have made a great contribution to the progress and development of free software, through activities that accord with the spirit of free software.
- 2007 Harald Welte
- for his work on GPL enforcement and OpenMoko
- 2006 Theodore Ts'o
- for his work on the Linux kernel and his roles as a project leader in the development of Kerberos and ONC RPC. The other finalists were Wietse Venema for his creation of the Postfix mailserver and his work on security tools, and Yukihiro Matsumoto for his work in designing the Ruby programming language.
- 2005 Andrew Tridgell
- for his work on Samba and his packet analysis work which led to the withdrawal of gratis BitKeeper licenses, spurring the development of git, a free software distributed revision control system for the Linux kernel. The other finalists were Hartmut Pilch founder of the Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure for his combatting of the Software Patent Directive in Europe and Theodore Ts'o for his Linux kernel filesystem development.
- 2004 Theo de Raadt
- for his campaigning against binary blobs, and the opening of drivers, documentation and firmware of wireless networking cards for the good of everyone. The other finalists were Andrew Tridgell for Samba and Cesar Brod for advocacy in Brazil.
- 2003 Alan Cox
- for his work advocating the importance of software freedom, his outspoken opposition to the USA's DMCA as well as other technology control measures, and his development work on the Linux kernel. The other finalists were Theo de Raadt for OpenBSD and Werner Koch for GnuPG.
- 2002 Lawrence Lessig
- for promoting understanding of the political dimension of free software, including the idea that "code is law". The other finalists were Bruno Haible for CLISP and Theo de Raadt for OpenBSD.
- 2001 Guido van Rossum
- for Python. The other finalists were L. Peter Deutsch for GNU Ghostscript and Andrew Tridgell for Samba.
- 2000 Brian Paul
- for his work on the Mesa 3D Graphics Library. The other finalists were Donald Becker for his work on Linux drivers and Patrick Lenz for the open source site Freshmeat.
- 1999 Miguel de Icaza
- for his leadership and work on the GNOME Project. The other finalists were Donald Knuth for TeX and METAFONT and John Gilmore for work done at Cygnus Solutions and his contributions to the Free Software Foundation.
- 1998 Larry Wall
- for numerous contributions to Free Software, notably Perl. The other finalists were the Apache Project, Tim Berners-Lee, Jordan Hubbard, Ted Lemon, Eric S. Raymond, and Henry Spencer.
Social benefit awardEdit
The Free Software Award for Projects of Social Benefit is an annual award granted by the Free Software Foundation (FSF). In announcing the award, the FSF explained that:
According to Richard Stallman, President of FSF, the award was inspired by the Sahana project which was developed, and was used, for organising the transfer of aid to tsunami victims in Sri Lanka after the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. The developers indicated that they hope to adapt it to aid for other future disasters. 
This is the second annual award created by FSF. The first was the Award for the Advancement of Free Software (AAFS).
The award was first awarded in 2005, and the recipients have been:
- 2005: Wikipedia, a free encyclopedia
- 2006: The Sahana FOSS Disaster Management System
- 2007: Groklaw
- 2006: Peter H. Salus (chair), Richard Stallman, Andrew Tridgell, Alan Cox, Lawrence Lessig, Vernor Vinge, Frederic Couchet, Jonas Öberg, Hong Feng, Raj Mathur, Suresh Ramasubramanian
- 2005: Peter H. Salus (chair), Richard Stallman, Alan Cox, Lawrence Lessig, Guido van Rossum, Frederic Couchet, Jonas Öberg, Hong Feng, Bruce Perens, Raj Mathur, Suresh Ramasubramanian, Enrique A. Chaparro, Ian Murdock
- 2004: Suresh Ramasubramanian, Raj Mathur, Frederick Noronha, Hong Feng, Frederic Couchet, Enrique A. Chaparro, Vernor Vinge, Larry Wall, Alan Cox, Peter H Salus, Richard Stallman
- 2003 The selection committee included: Enrique A. Chaparro, Frederic Couchet, Miguel de Icaza, Raj Mathur, Frederick Noronha, Jonas Öberg, Bruce Perens, Peter H. Salus, Suresh Ramasubramanian, Richard Stallman, and Vernor Vinge
- 2002 The selection committee included: Enrique A. Chaparro, Frederic Couchet, Hong Feng, Miguel de Icaza, Raj Mathur, Frederick Noronha, Jonas Öberg, Eric S. Raymond, Guido van Rossum, Peter H. Salus, Suresh Ramasubramanian, and Larry Wall
- 2001 The selection committee included: Miguel de Icaza, Ian Murdock, Eric S. Raymond, Peter H. Salus, Vernor Vinge, and Larry Wall
- 2000: no details found
- 1999: Peter H. Salus, no further details found
- 1998: Peter H. Salus, Scott Christley, Rich Morin, Adam Richter, Richard Stallman, and Vernor Vinge
- Official award site
- Previous award site, with information about winners from 1998-2003
- Official webpage for the award
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