Rob Levin, aka Lilo, who has for many years so gracefully run irc.freenode.net, passed away this morning :(, from injuries sustained in a hit-and-run accident.
This is beyond tragic.
I'm not sure I've ever known someone more dedicated and passionate about the free exchange of ideas for the advancement of technology. As many of his friends have, I've often tried to convince him to go for a more comfortable lifestyle with a high-paying job, but he lived by a set of higher principles, offering his talent to PDPC, with, in his own words, the awe-inspiring support of his wonderful Wife and Son.
Freenode is an IRC network where many of the sharpest engineering minds regularly congregate to discuss various technology topics. Many open-source projects have their official discussion channels on freenode. It's easy to take all of it for granted. It's free. It's always there. it's always reliable.
Yet we all knew Lilo was always tirelessly slaving, behind-the-scenes, constantly improving the network, scrounging donated hardware and bandwidth, raising money every year.
The world needs more humans like Rob Levin. Not less. Saying that God works in mysterious ways, in this instance, would be an under-fucking-statement.
I for one will continue to look-up to Rob and his wonderful family as shining examples of what outstanding character can achieve.