When lamenting the corporate state of the world, we often forget about the choices we can make in the here and now. In my more religious days, I would lament how the world wasn't recognizes my religion, but it was inescapable that there were plenty of options available here and today for enriching my spiritual life. Sometimes you don't need everyone; some will do.
Debian - Debian isn't just a Linux distribution. It is a convenient repository of over 20,000 programs that you can use. Debian is ideologically rigorous about maintaining its software as free. Free in this case means that anyone can sell it (yes sell it), use it as is, and modify it. With a simple download, you can have a desktop running in no time. For beginners and especially laptop users, I would recommend a Debian derivative. Debian software is as rock solid as it gets. It doesn't do as well with modern hardware configuration. A laptop will not be an install and start playing experience with Debian. Desktops will typically be an install and play experience.
Project Gutenberg collects texts that are out of copyright and makes them available as E-books.
Mobil 1 has put together a resource for car repair that gives useful advice and non-model specific repair information. The information does not hawk Mobil products or any products.
Additional resource suggestions are welcome. I am absolutely not interested in commercial ventures. Corporate sponsorship is fine for a project, but any content that points to the sponsor's product will likely result in non-consideration. The other thing is that I am interested in professional resources. User forums and general interest wikis serve a purpose, but some guy's opinion is where you go when you don't have a resource and you don't want to pay for real advice.