“Mono Mania” Carries on and Evolution Includes Mono

Posted in GNOME, GNU/Linux, KDE, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Patents, Ubuntu at 11:05 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Monkeys with a child

Summary: As criticism of Novell’s Mono keeps rising, Mono entanglements seemingly continue to spread further (even in a KDE distribution)

Harvard Business School has this new paper about “Mixed Source”, which is Novell’s strategy [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]*.

A token of this strategy would have to be Mono, which Jeremy Allison’s latest column has cast a shadow upon [1, 2]. The fallout continues:

It may be recalled that Allison quit Novell in disgust soon after the company signed a patent indemnification deal with Microsoft in November 2006.


“Miguel’s employer, Novell, has a patent agreement with Microsoft that exempts Mono users from Microsoft patent aggression, so long as you get Mono from Novell. Miguel takes pains to point this out,” Allison wrote.

As far as Mono goes, De Icaza has implemented parts of it which are not covered by the specifications submitted to the standards body ECMA by Microsoft; the parts submitted are said to be available on royalty-free terms and without fear of patent violations.

Novell carries on developing Banshee, which already makes use of non-ECMA parts of .NET and thus falls outside the awful MCP. Banshee is an example of Free software that only customers of Novell can use safely. And mind the cost associated with MonoTouch, for example. From the news:

Take, for instance, MonoTouch, Novell’s recently released tool for programming the iPhone with C# and .NET. It costs US$400 on top of the normal iPhone development requirements: the purchase of an iPhone and a Mac.

Who needs MonoTouch? MonoTouch is about making the iPhone and the Mac platforms for Microsoft development.

Meanwhile, Novell’s de Icaza promotes MonoSpace, which we wrote about in [1, 2, 3]. Watch this part.

# And I will focus on the schmoozing.

Why does de Icaza use this term? “Schmoozing” is an arcane term that Microsoft uses (only internally) in reference to AstroTurfing and persuasion [1, 2]. It’s exactly the type of thing Microsoft applied to de Icaza in order to “charm” him.

As one final note, as much as I am pleased with KDE 4.3 and as satisfied as I am with the beta of Kubuntu 9.10, earlier today in Message-ID <hbd5vg$1tf$1@news.albasani.net> (USENET) I read the following:

I just did a quick look in Synaptic, after a couple upgrades from Edubuntu.

Only thing using Mono is Evolution. Since it is not required, it can be uninstalled, along with the Mono libraries. Nothing else I see is using Mono, and all the rest is not installed by default.

Since Fedora already has a Winforms issue, I decided to investigate the above on my main machine. I was greeted with the following when preparing to install Evolution in KDE4.

Evolution is a groupware suite which integrates mail, calendar, address book, to-do list and memo tools.
Additional features include integration with Exchange and Groupwise servers, newsgroup client, LDAP support, web calendars and synchronization with Palm devices.
Evolution is a graphical application that is part of GNOME, and is distributed by Novell, Inc.
See http://www.novell.com/products/evolution/ for more information.
The following plugins belonging to the “base” set are included.
• calendar-file
• calendar-http
• calendar-weather
• itip-formatter
• plugin-manager
• python
• default-source
• addressbook-file
• startup-wizard
• mark-all-read
• groupwise-features
• groupwise-account-setup
• webdav-account-setup
• mail-account-disable
• publish-calendar
• caldav
• imap-features
• google-account-setup
• sa-junk-plugin
• bogo-junk-plugin
• exchange-operations
• mono

Mind that last package. Not only OpenSUSE has adopted or inherited such a dependency problem.
* Novell views itself neither as an “open source” company nor a “Free (libre) software” company. In reality, Novell is predominantly proprietary.

“I saw that internally inside Microsoft many times when I was told to stay away from supporting Mono in public. They reserve the right to sue”

Robert Scoble, former Microsoft evangelist

More on Gates’ Evil Foundation (GMO)

Posted in Africa, Bill Gates, Microsoft, Patents at 10:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Gates’ gimmick of becoming a philantropist repeats the Rockefeller scam almost one to one a century later.”

Dark cloud over good works of Gates Foundation

Summary: More detailed explorations and explanations of how the Gates Foundation profits from patents under the guise of “charity”

WE have written quite a lot about the for-profit (and no-tax) foundation of Bill Gates, his father, and his wife. A great volume of substantiated criticism does exist. It’s all factual, but it is scarcely being covered by the business press, which is preoccupied with glorification of the super-affluent.

One of the sins of the Gates Foundation is centered around GMO [1, 2]. Those who are not familiar with it really ought to learn about the fascinating impact that stakeholder rarely tell the public about.

Glyn Moody, a veteran journalist and the famous author of Rebel Code, writes about the Gates Foundation’s latest GMO trick:

So Gates’ donations are ultimately promoting an agriculture based on intellectual monopolies – just as Microsoft does in the software field. The latest $300 million doesn’t sound quite so generous now, does it?

“That’s why Bill [Gates] is now bribing patents into the 3rd world,” explained Fewa a couple of hours ago.

Sadly, the mainstream press will always play the strings of big business, like a fiddle incapable of real investigation and bold criticism.

We wrote about a similar subject a couple of weeks ago, namely WIPO’s keeping of “traditional knowledge” in the hands of those who have a right to this knowledge. Here is a followup post about it:

On 1 October 2009, the last day of the 47th Series of Meetings of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) General Assemblies, a new mandate for its Intergovernmental Committee on Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (commonly known as ‘the IGC’) was agreed by the Member States. The last minute agreement, following a year of wrangling, was hailed by many as a major breakthrough (see IP-Watch story), particularly for the African Group. WIPO’s Director General called it “a real step forward”. The African Group, with the support of many developing countries, had insisted on a mandate that would deliver a ‘binding’ treaty on these issues in two years time.

As the dust settles the question that arises is whether this new mandate will, in reality, be able to deliver. This question is particularly pertinent when looking at the debate around the “biopiracy” problem which was the primary driving force behind the creation of the IGC nine years ago.

Intellectual monopolies are no friends of Africa and neither is WIPO, which is an institution that’s build around intellectual monopolies. Africans should really reject bodies such as WIPO, whose job is to protect or restore domination by Western nations, all at the expense of “wage slaves” in developing countries. Knowledge wants to be free.

Outstretched man

Windows Has More Infections Than Machines

Posted in Microsoft, Security, Vista, Vista 7, Windows at 9:43 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Hardisk search

Summary: Microsoft finds almost 8,000,000 bits of malware in just 535,752 machines; Vista and Vista 7 left vulnerable due to “slip-up”

LAST year we remarked on the fact that almost half of all Windows machines are essentially zombies PCs. It is reassuring when even Microsoft discloses figures which it believes to be good news (to its product distribution and detection rate) whilst at the same time are a shot in the foot. It’s almost self explanatory:

One week of MSE: 1.5 million downloads, 4 million detections

Microsoft Security Essentials data for the first week has been released, and the numbers tell quite a story.


Microsoft says that in the first week, MSE made almost four million detections on 535,752 distinct machines; the company attributes the fact that the malware is eight times more than the number of computers since machines can be infected with multiple threats.

Is this something which Microsoft wishes to impress with and take pride in? While seemingly proving the effectiveness of some software, it is only demonstrating the sheer weakness of Windows. Additionally, a better measure would be how many (unknown) pieces of malware are not being detected?

In IDG we also find the following new report: [hat tip: Tony Manco]

Programmer slip-up produces critical bug, Microsoft admits

Microsoft acknowledged Thursday that one of the critical network vulnerabilities it patched earlier in the week was due to a programming error on its part.

The flaw, one of 34 patched Tuesday in a massive security update, was in the code for SMB 2 (Server Message Block 2), a Microsoft-made network file- and print-sharing protocol that ships with Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008.

We wrote about this flaw in [1, 2]. It helps to have more eyeballs on the code in order to prevent such a “slip-up” that already affects Vista 7. The boxed product is hijackable ‘out of the box’ and it’s not even on the shelves yet.

Mozilla Unofficially Joins ECIS and Opera in Opposition to Microsoft’s Deal in Europe; Microsoft Poisoned Firefox

Posted in Antitrust, Apple, Europe, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft at 9:08 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“…[C]ut off Netscape’s air supply.”

Paul Maritz, Vice President, Microsoft (Now VMWare CEO)

Blue desktop

Summary: Apple-Mozilla power struggle has just returned as a Mozilla employee expresses disdain; Microsoft’s force-fed Firefox plug-in leaves the Web browser vulnerable

ECIS and Opera have both complained about the unreasonable interim deal [1, 2] which has upset those two for quite some time [1, 2]. Complaints from the public are on their way (as promised) and there is already a draft people are encouraged to participate in. It comes from Jukka Rannila of Finland

At the moment of sending the Opinion to the Commission there was still some time to the final deadline of opinions.

Readers are stron[g]ly recommended to send their comments before 7 November 2009.

In addition to the above — and contradicting what Sam Dean wrote about a week ago — Mozilla too is reportedly dissatisfied.

What browser do you use in Windows? Apparently if you live in Europe, the answer is a resounding Safari. That is right folks, in the great ballot poll, Firefox lost out to the lowly webkit-based Safari.

Apple must be so proud, their baby is still not a great browser, but is all the rage.


Problem is, when you put FireFox that far down on the list, it loses to Safari. Guess who is hating the EU tonight all of a sudden? Don’t expect this to stick.

Here is the original, which also states: “This is my personal opinion and doesn’t reflect Mozilla’s official position or any formal statement from Mozilla.” The Microsoft crowd would possibly incite for boycotts if Mozilla speaks out officially.

We previously showed that Apple is closer to Microsoft than most people realise and Mozilla complained about Apple's vision of a duopoly with Microsoft.

Mozilla has better reasons to be upset with Microsoft though. Our reader Will has shown us this report, which goes roughly two days back.

An add-on that Microsoft silently slipped into Mozilla’s Firefox last February leaves the browser open to attack, Microsoft’s security engineers acknowledged earlier this week.

“Clever,” argues Glyn Moody, “.NET flaw manages to compromise Firefox as well as IE.”

Will reminds us of the fact that Microsoft not only blocked Google but it also rejected its good plug-in that fixed Internet Explorer; adding insult to injury, Microsoft’s hypocrisy was seemingly infinite because Microsoft had pushed a .NET extension into Mozilla Firefox without users’ consent [1, 2]. Going back to what Microsoft did to Firefox and the impact, “It was addressed by a recent patch,” argues Will, “but still, considering Microsoft recently tried to FUD the Chrome Frame plugin in IE.”

Based on Will’s recollection, “they got a 10x performance boost out of IE by using the Frame engine instead of the IE one.”

“Microsoft is, I think, fundamentally an evil company.”

Former Netscape Chairman James H. Clark

Links 17/10/2009: Parsix GNU/Linux 3.0 Released; Mandriva Summons Community

Posted in News Roundup at 8:04 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Linux in Education: Athens Schools

    All in all, Athens schools are a picture perfect example of how you don’t need expensive proprietary hardware, big powerful machines, or even proprietary software to create the perfect learning environment, or to properly run a school. As I said, the bigger schools would be wise to learn from Athens and use the example they’ve set as a guide to create their own Open Source learning environments.

  • What is it About Linux?

    Why do we love Linux so much? What is it that draws so many of us into the tinkering, experimenting, and everything else?

    In the Linux world, we blur the line between applications software and the operating system. This is important. It allows us to have more flexibility than any other operating system on Earth.

  • Scare Up Some Spooky Halloween Fun for Your Computer

    Even if you’re not dressing up in costume this Halloween, you can still get in the spirit of the holiday. Trick out your computer with some creepy skins and plugins or treat yourself to a few ghoulish movies and desktop themes.–By Lisa Hoover

    KDE-Look has plenty of scary, silly, and spooky Halloween themes for your desktop. Choose from a variety of pumpkins, skulls, ghosts, and even a Trick or Treating Pacman.

    GNOME-Look also has a few Halloween themes to choose from. From dressed-up scarecrows to cinematic scary guy Michael Myers, you’re sure to find something you like at this site.

  • Introducing your Child to Linux

    The Linux operating system offers an excellent learning opportunity for children, whether for educational software and games, programming, or general computer skills. Charles Profitt, a K-12 systems administrator, shares with SmartBean the nuts and bolts of introducing kids to Linux. His guidelines for the why, what and how of getting going with Linux and open source computing at home are lucid and helpful.

  • Audio

  • Applications

    • Tasks and To-Dos with Glista 0.4

      If the memory of humans could be measured in removable media and the best would be a BluRay disc, mine would be somewhere around a floppy. Needless to say, I use my phone’s reminder function a lot, especially for important stuff with set deadlines.

    • Cairo-Dock 2.1.0 Released, OpenGL Mode Now Works With The Latest OpenSource ATI And Intel Drivers

      When Cairo Dock v2.0 was out, it instantly became my favourite dock for Linux.

    • Speed up Photo Transfers with Rapid Photo Downloader

      When you need to offload photos from a digital camera onto your computer, you can do this using the default browser, a photo management application, or a dedicated tool like Rapid Photo Downloader.

    • Bombono DVD Open Source Authoring Software

      Bombono DVD is a DVD authoring program for Linux. It is made easy to use and has nice and clean GUI (Gtk).

      The main features of Bombono DVD are:

      * Excellent MPEG viewer: Timeline and Monitor
      * Real WYSIWYG Menu Editor with live thumbnails
      * Comfortable Drag-n-Drop support

    • Customize The Email Archive In Thunderbird 3

      The desktop email client Thunderbird 3, which is currently available as a beta version, comes with many exciting new features and options. One of these new features is the email archive which can be used to store emails in specific folders in the folder structure. Emails that are archived will be moved from their original folder into the archive folder. The default button to move emails into the archive is [a]. The archive will be divided by years only by default which could be problematic for accounts that receive many emails on a regular basis.

    • The Helix Player is an open source media player for Linux

      The Helix Player is an open source media player for Linux, Solaris, and Symbian based on the Helix DNA Client media engine. More operating system versions are currently in development. This site is where you can download the latest version of the player, find answers to questions about it or even get involved with improving it.

      Helix DNA is a project to produce software that can play audio and video media in various formats, aid in producing such media, and serve them over a network. It is intended as a largely free and open source digital media framework that runs on numerous operating systems and processors (including mobile phones) and was started by RealNetworks which has contributed much of the code. The Helix Community is an open collaborative effort to develop and extend the Helix DNA platform.

    • Couturier Merges PDF Files on GNOME Desktop

      The Couturier Mono program merges multiple PDFs into a single file. It follows the old UNIX policy: one program for one task.

    • Linux: Access 100+ Games Instantly With DJL

      For those who always feel that gaming is not suitable in Linux OS and it is always an hassle to install and get games to run in Linux platform, then DJL will definitely change the way you think.

  • Conferences/Expos

    • Scenes from the Real Time Linux Workshop

      The conference adjourned with the announcement of the venue for next year’s event. The Real Time Linux Workshop has tended to move around more than most conferences; past events have been held all over Europe as well as China, Mexico, and the US. The 2010 Workshop will continue that practice by moving to Nairobi, Kenya, in the latter part of October. That should be an interesting place to discuss what’s happening in the rapidly developing realtime Linux area.

    • Mother explains why everybody should attend the 2009 Linux Day

      October 24th, 2009, will be Linux Day in Italy. You may think that such events are only relevant for software geeks, but that’s not the case at all.


      Serena’s words perfectly explain why understanding the real role of ICT in our lives is a duty that all parents and teachers have towards their kids and students.

    • Interview: Behind the Scenes at SCALE 8x’s Call For Papers

      Although the 8th annual Southern California Linux Expo (SCALE) isn’t until February, 2010, a Call for Papers has already been announced. If you’ve got something you want to discuss with the FOSS community, head over to the registration page and submit your idea for a talk. There are five speaker tracks to choose from including two specialized tracks — one for beginners and one for developers.

    Desktop Environments

    • GNOME 3.0 Determines Boston Summit

      While the European Linux scene has been busy with KDE and Qt, a relatively unnoticed but important gathering occurred in the U.S. to determine the future of the GNOME desktop: the GNOME Boston Summit 2009.

    • Developer Days 2009: Qt Grows

      During the conference, we spotted many of the new N900 Maemo based devices. Developers were largely happy about this new piece of hardware, and were excited to see good progress on this front. With Maemo having announced official support for Qt on Maemo 5, the Qt ecosystem showed great interest in this new platform. Less than 24 hours after getting their hands on it, the KDE team attending the Maemo summit which was held last weekend in Amsterdam, the hackers around Marijn Kruisselbrink showed Plasma running on the N900. Maemo 6 (Harmattan) is already planned for the fourth quarter of this year, leaving the impression that Maemo’s transition to Qt is progressing quickly, opening exciting opportunities for Qt developers to dive into mobile development and open and hackable phones. Lucky guy of the conference was definitely KDE’s Sandro Andrade who won two contests in a row. Sandro will be going home with an N900 and a new T-shirt. Daniel Kihlberg who handed over the prizes suggested Sandro should play lotto that same day.

    • comparing “KDE 4″ and “GNOME 3″

      What these blog entries are usually comparing is not “KDE 4″ with “GNOME 3″ but two of the KDE 4 workspace components, Plasma and KWin, with gnome-shell. Little more than that is compared in most of them when the topic is “KDE 4 or GNOME 3?”. This is unfortunate because KDE 4 is a lot more than just the KDE Workspace, which is just one product that comes from KDE, just as GNOME 3 will be more than just gnome-shell.

    • LabPlot and SciDAVis Collaborate on the Future of Free Scientific Plotting

      Both projects have seen a lot of rewriting of code they inherited from their predecessors. Stefan began a direct port of LabPlot from KDE 3 to KDE 4 “but soon realized that it would be less work and produces cleaner code to start from scratch”.

    • Some Things I Like about KDE 4
  • Distributions

    • Parsix 3.0 “Kev” Released and Reviewed

      The Parsix Linux distribution is derived from KANOTIX, based on the Debian testing branch, and developed by a team in Iran. The distro comes as a live CD with English and Persian languages installed by default and many others available. According to the release announcement features of the new Parsix 3.0 include GNOME 2.26.3, Linux Kernel, the installer supports separate /home partition, ext4 file system and GRUB 2, SquashFS+Lzma compression for the live CD and much more. After seeing the amount of changes to this release and remembering positive reviews of Parsix 1.0 and 2.0, I burned the .ISO to CD and got started.

    • Thoughts: Puppy Linux 4.3 on Older Laptop

      So we had our monthly pqlug.org meeting last night. So I brought the Dell 8100 to the meeting and showed everyone my running version of Puppy. We all decided that we were going to place it on the Dell 5000 so I just ejected the CD and away we went with the install. In about 5 minutes it was on her laptop and configured to work on the internet with a wireless USB key. All was well and she was very happy to have a light weighted Linux running on her older machine.

      In conclusion Puppy Linux 4.3 works great! I am leaving the CD in my Dell 8100 and will be using it to browse the web and check my gmail account while I watch TV… :)

    • Kahel OS Linux

      Kahel OS is a remastered version of Arch Linux. Arch Linux has a bit of a reputation as not being particularly friendly to average desktop users. Kahel OS is an effort to change that perception and make it easier for people to use Arch Linux.

    • Mandriva

      • 101: contributing to Mandriva Linux

        There is a multitude of ways of contributing to Mandriva whatever your technical level. And there’s no need to be a code wizard.

      • 102: taking part in Mandriva Linux

        There is no question of reviving the Club: any contribution would go directly to funding projects whose output is already and would always be freely available for all.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat’s Middleware Adds Security Certification

        We are pleased to announce that Red Hat (NYSE:RHT) ’s Data Services Platform, specifically MetaMatrix 5.5.3, has achieved Common Criteria certification at Evaluation Assurance Level (EAL) 2. This is a significant milestone for Red Hat’s data services solutions and adds another Common Criteria certification to the Red Hat portfolio, in line with the goals we set in November 2007.

      • Red Hat’s Jim Whitehurst ‘on the bleeding edge’ of change with ‘cred’

        One of the real benefits of Red Hat as well is we are a very, very solid company financially. So, we have a significant base to work from and so when we think about uncertainty out there we can look at our customers, we can look at our employees, we can look at our partners and say, “if you are going to make investments, if you are going to make bets around companies we’ll be there and you know we’ll be there”, which gives us both the ability to attract communities, again these are either employees or customers or academics or from all walks of life, we can attract these communities to us because there is a general sense that Red Hat will be there and has the staying power to be there.

    • Debian Family

      • 10 years in Debian now

        And I am a member of the FTP team today which is a great honour. It is quite some extra work but we are now closer to the 1 week waiting time for NEW processing (on average). Processing NEW is another place where I could see that times are changing: this week I accepted a package (c) Microsoft Corporation into Debian main what seemed to be impossible ten years ago.

      • 5 things make Kubuntu 9.10 special

        Less than 13 days and Kubuntu 9.10 will be released. It is based on Ubuntu 9.10 packages which means it will get: Linux kernel 2.6.31, ext4 filesystem by default,GRUB 2 boot loader and a lot more.

      • So Ubuntu is gunning for the enterprise?

        I read on the internut tubes the other day that Ubuntu is really pushing to break into the enterprise business market. Trekkie fans can relax that it is the business enterprise market and not the ship Enterprise which Ubuntu is gunning for. I just thought I would add my two [insert local currency here] worth.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Wind River’s Linux chief: I don’t wear an Intel badge.

      Rerolle: With PC-based use cases you don’t know what’s going to happen, so you need a very large Linux. Our approach is that we allow our embedded customers to optimize what they want to put in the device, and let them optimize the kernel, userspace, and file system to match use cases and power consumption profiles. So it’s less of an issue for us. Linux is absolutely meeting our needs.

    • Home automation gateway runs Linux

      Wind River announced that Belgium-based Fifthplay has selected Wind River Linux for its FG4000 Gateway home-automation system. The Fifthplay FG4000 Gateway and Home Monitor builds on Wind River Linux to offer a customizable platform for developing home automation applications, says the Intel subsidiary.

    • Phones

      • Schmidt: “Android Adoption Is About To Explode”

        During Google’s third quarter earnings conference call today, one message came out loud and clear: Google’s mobile strategy is starting to pay off. “Android adoption is about to explode,” declared CEO Eric Schmidt, explaining that all the “necessary conditions” are set for growth: There are now 12 Android phones out there (most recently the Motorola Cliq) across 32 carriers in 26 countries.

    • Sub-notebooks

Free Software/Open Source

  • Running the IT of a company with Open Source software only?

    Many people have wondered whether running a company using Open Source software is possible. The answer is “yes we can”. Does it make sense though? Well, it depends.

    There are good alternatives for almost every important commercial software available today. Are they able to beat the commercial proprietary software? Maybe yes, maybe no. Are they good enough? Most of the time, yes. But of course it depends on the actual requirements.

  • The Coolness of Clipperz

    I came across Clipperz while I was still at Bungee Labs. I was doing some research on open source licenses, especially the Affero GPL (AGPLv3). I spoke about AGPLv3 in several posts around that time.

    Clipperz is a perfect example of a product that should be licensed under AGPLv3. First, open source has big advantages for security-related software so that flaws can be identified and fixed quickly. Second, since Clipperz is essentially Software-as-a-Service, AGPLv3 provides the creators with protection against the SaaS Loophole (that is, someone taking their source code, replicating their service, making improvements, and choosing to keep the source code closed). Third, it means that if you’re the deeply paranoid type who doesn’t trust having someone else host your passwords, you can use the software to host the your own service. And if you have the technical chops for it, you can examine the code and determine whether it meets your standards for security.

  • Sharma: Open Source Hardware

    If the time wasn’t ripe for this revolution, news of an open-source camera from a university wouldn’t have made it past the campus science journal. But Stanford’s Frankencamera project is popping up all over the radar. The idea is simple – take the principles of open-source software and apply them to a low-cost assimilation of off-the-shelf camera parts tied together with a Linux-based OS that’s available to everyone for modification. Forget proprietary APIs and SDKs, this is the holy grail for people that spent their school breaks soldering radios.

  • Cisco Spots Opportunities, Challenges In Arizona

    First, some background. Astricon, hosted by Digium, attracted roughly 620 developers, customers and partners focused on the Asterisk open source IP PBX. N-able Partner Summit attracted roughly 350 managed service providers running N-able’s remote monitoring and management (RMM) software. Cisco had a major presence at both events.


    Cisco will have three choices:

    * Cisco could ignore and dismiss Asterisk, asserting that it isn’t a business option. Microsoft made this mistake in the early days of Linux and is now paying the price. Cisco’s presence at Astricon suggests Cisco won’t make the same mistake in the Asterisk market.

  • Open Source for America Request for Working Group Participation

    Today we are happy to report that we are ready for the next phase in our mission to establish a more effective voice supporting the use of free and open source software in the U.S. Federal government. Since our launch more than 1,250 individuals and organizations have joined OSFA and that is what we would like to discuss with you today.

  • Impact of Open Source Software on Clinical Trials Grows With Release of OpenClinica 3.0 Electronic Data Capture Software

    As open source software, OpenClinica is free for organizations to use and modify.

  • Open Source Gains More Traction

    Sun Microsystems claims OpenOffice.org, its free office productivity suite, is downloaded 100,000 times a day. A year ago, Sun saw just half that number of downloads. Sun also claims that downloads of Glassfish, its open source application server, have doubled in the last one year, and that of MySQL, the open source database, have increased by 30 percent. All the Fortune 500 companies are now using free software.

    But it’s not just about the savings. An Indian organization deployed Linux and Asterisk, a solution that converts a PC into a full-fledged EPABX system. This not only helped it reduce costs, but also allowed the company to add new features easily by just installing additional software modules rather than purchasing additional hardware.

  • Alfresco launches records management module

    Open source enterprise content management firm Alfresco Software has launched Alfresco Records Management Module, extending its open source records management and retention tools to support the governance, retention and compliance strategies of federal agencies, government bodies and commercial organisations.

  • SharePoint faces open source challenge

    German open source developer Open-Xchange is promising a a lower cost alternative to Microsoft Windows Server, Exchange and Sharepoint for educational institutions, public administrations and small- and medium-size businesses.

  • More Must Be Given To SMBs To Adopt Technology, Say IT Industry Members

    An incentive or rebate scheme by the government for small medium businesses (SMBs) to adopt technology into their business is very timely in light of the current uncertainty ahead, said Red Hat Asia Pacific.

    Its country sales manager, Basheer Mohd Ali said technology remained a key enabler for SMBs to remain competitive and relevant in today’s modern business world where business opportunities are available around the clock and not bounded by physical borders.

  • Remarkable Wit is Building Nashville’s Open Source Future One Developer—and One Student — At a Time

    Tennesssee’s technology students will enter the same competitive landscape as graduates from MIT, Stanford, Carnegie Mellon and other technology education superpowers, yet because of budgetary concerns, often Tennessee students’ access to IT thought leaders working on bleeding edge projects is limited.

  • Integration Watch: From open source to commercial quality: A study in rigor

    Interestingly, all these changes are for the better and all, without exception, rest on one aspect: introducing greater rigor. This rigor is the quality often missing from OSS projects, in part because it’s difficult to impose it on contributors who are donating their time. But OSS projects that want to stand out from the crowd or are entertaining thoughts of eventually going commercial can help themselves significantly by establishing a pattern of this rigor early on.

  • Why prefer open source

    A preference for open source is based on a simple, easy to understand premise.

    An open source code base is your asset. A proprietary code base is someone else’s asset.

  • The Calling for Open Source Innovation

    Open source alternatives to proprietary technologies have been proven in many mission-critical deployments, and the cost savings that can be achieved by switching to these open source technologies are significant. Using the money saved to fund new innovations could mean the difference between surviving and thriving in this difficult climate.

  • Syntext Released Serna Free Open Source XML Editor v4.2

    Serna Free is a lightweight XML authoring solution with intuitive behaviour and a unique WYSIWYG approach for those who wish to smoothly adopt the XML technology and freely author XML documents in a familiar environment

  • Open Source Will Change Enterprises, Says BT Guru

    Software licences are a fiction, and open source is ready for use by every consumer, says Jeremy Ruston, BT’s head of open source innovation.

  • Portland State University using Drupal

    We’re on a roll with universities using Drupal! Portland State University (PSU), with more than 24,000 students, is using Drupal for their main website at http://pdx.edu.

  • OpenOffice.org

    • 9 years of magic

      We are now well in the middle of October and this means it’s our usual time of celebration at OpenOffice.org . OpenOffice.org is now 9 years old, which is no small accomplishment for a Free Software project. We will soon all gather to celebrate this event in Orvieto, where the OOoCon will take place between the 3 and 6th of November. (Don’t forget: we have an ODF plugfest at the same place on the 1st and 2nd of November!) Last year has been a good year.

    • OpenOffice Renaissance Provides Usage Click Charts for Impress

      The Renaissance UI improvement project for OpenOffice has rendered a click chart in Impress based on usage feedback data.


    • Free Software Award Season

      Do you know someone who’s made an important contribution to the advancement of free software?

      Help the community recognize those contributions by nominating a worthy person or project for a free software award.

  • Licensing

    • Palm Pre GSM source code now available

      According to Harald Welte, the source code for the Palm Pre GSM model, currently being sold in Europe is now available from the opensource.palm.com site. Earlier this week, Welte pointed out that the source code for the new model of the Palm Pre was not available to the public, as it should be to comply with the terms of the GPL. An email to Welte from Palm has now confirmed the availability of the code for WebOS 1.1.2 and 1.1.3.

    • Palm Pre GSM model source code available
    • “Open Core” Is the New Shareware

      Like most buzzwords, Open Core has no real agreed-upon meaning. I’m using it to describe a business model whereby some middleware-ish system is released by a single, for-profit entity copyright holder, who requires copyright-assigned changes back to the company, and that company sells proprietary add-ons and applications that use the framework. Often, the model further uses the GPL to forbid anyone but the copyright-holding company to make such proprietary add-on applications (i.e., everyone else would have to GPL their applications). In the current debate, some have proposed that a permissive license structure can be used for the core instead.

    • When to give up control of an open source core
    • Free, you say?

      I know that there’s nothing to stop people charging for Free Software. It says as much in the Selling Free Software article on the GNU web site: “Actually we encourage people who redistribute free software to charge as much as they wish or can.”.

      Apparently there is no requirements about how much can be charged for Free Software, except “The one exception is in the case where binaries are distributed without the corresponding complete source code.”.

    • GNU Four Freedoms Translation Attempt One

      Second Benefit: You can learn how the program operates and share this information with anyone. This is great if you want to learn how to write your own software. But even more, if you are the kind of person that likes to learn as much as they can about something, benefit 2 will aid you. Even more, because this benefit is available to everyone, you get to learn from their experiences too! You can take what you learn and publish it to the web, make a movie or even write a book! Sure you can do this with non-free software but there are no limits, no restrictions when it comes to freesoftware.

  • Openness

    • Open Source Mathematics

      So far, attribution hasn’t really been a problem, since everyone who contributes is acknowledged – for example through the discussions around the code. Similarly, preservation is dealt with through the tools for source code management and the discussion lists. But there are crucial questions of long-term preservation – not least for historical purposes – which are not really being addressed, even by the longest-established open projects like GNU.

    • Eigenlabs to open source new music control protocol and API

      Eigenlabs is a start-up company founded by John Lambert in 2001 and based in Devon UK. In an interview on the Create Digital Music blog, Lambert said of the Eigenlabs software that it’s “written in a mixture of C++ and Python. It’s quite scary code, but very clean and pretty, with little ‘cruft’. I think the open source community are going to have fun with it. Its a big system too, 8 years of R&D in one huge release. I don’t think that there’s been anything quite like this open sourced before in the music world – it is a bit as if Logic or Ableton were GPL’d tomorrow.”

    • Back to the Future: 2020 Roadmap Updated

      I think the sooner it becomes generally recognised that free software is a digital knowledge commons – one of many that are being created through open collaboration – the more people’s attitudes to it will change, and the more impact it will have. It is no coincidence that one of the people awarded this year’s Nobel Prize for Economics, was Elinor Ostrom, “for her analysis of economic governance, especially the commons”. I look forward to reading next year’s 2020 roadmap, in the hope that it might explore more deeply this important concept.

    • OpenStreetMapS.org now owned by OSMF

      Thanks to some great work by Grant Slater and Andy Robinson all those people who mistake openstreetmap for openstreetmaps will now get directed to the right place.

    • EU Bookshop Digital Library goes live – All the EU publications in one place

      Scanning 12 million pages makes more than 110 000 EU publications available free of charge for download in the EU Bookshop Digital Library. It offers all publications ever edited by the Publications Office on behalf of the EU institutions, agencies and other bodies since 1952.

    • Is open-access journal publishing a vanity publishing industry?

      Vanity journal domination is not occurring, nor is it likely to occur, among OA journals. Vanity journal existence will and does happen among both OA and subscription-fee journals, but at least for OA journals is a benign phenomenon. As subscription-fee journals more and more charge author-side fees, including hybrid open-access fees, one can only hope that the baseless vanity press recrimination against open-access journals will fade away.

    • The Commons Meme Becomes More Common

      One of the great knock-on benefits of Elinor Ostrom sharing the Nobel prize for Economics is that the concept of the commons is getting the best airing than it’s ever had.

  • Programming

    • Java: The Good Parts

      Java underwent a sea change in 2006 with the releasing of the source code and opening of the development process. Java and the JVM should be championed by Libre software developers and users alike!

    • Linux Lessons: Tips and Tricks from Users

      Linux (and indeed Unix) has long held the philosophy of “one tool for each job, and one job for each tool.” This can lead to quite a paradox for newcomers to Linux: Why are there so many tools that do similar things?

      Part of the reason for this is the open-source approach. As soon as a great open-source application is available, all the hackers of the world (and here I use “hacker” in its more noble form) are able to start “messing around” with the code. Improvements to the code may appear in the original application, or they may appear in a new application based on that original application. Soon there may be dozens (or even hundreds) of choices—whatever happened to “one tool for each job”? Well, welcome to Linux.

    • Ten useful open source tools for web developers

      The rapidly changing nature of the Web makes it necessary for web developers to constantly be on the lookout for new, shiny tools. This post will hopefully show you some cool tools you didn’t already know about.


  • Goldman Calls For More US Dollar Pain

    Of course, this is good news for equity investors, given the tight inverse correlation between stocks on the dollar. A surprise move higher, rather than a continued drift lower at the current pace is what would really sucker-punch this market.

  • Libraries and Readers Wade Into Digital Lending

    Eager to attract digitally savvy patrons and capitalize on the growing popularity of electronic readers, public libraries across the country are expanding collections of books that reside on servers rather than shelves.

  • OpenInkpot: free software for e-book readers

    OpenInkpot (or OI) intends to be a full alternative, free software stack for e-ink based readers. It comes with a “bookshelf” menu to handle your collection of e-books and brings the popular FBReader and Cool Reader to display most e-book formats, among them epub, fb2, txt, html, rtf, pdb, plucker and mobipocket. PDF files are handled by OI’s own locoPDF and madeye is a simple viewer for images. A sound player application for audio books will join the OI software collection soon.

  • Google

    • Monash University migrates 58,000 students to Gmail

      Monash is not the first university to migrate email accounts over to Google. NSW-based Macquarie University signed up 68,000 students for Gmail in September 2007.

    • Google Translator Toolkit and minority languages

      Today, we’ve added 285 new languages to Google Translator Toolkit, bringing the total number of languages supported by this product to 345 — and making it possible to translate between 10,664 language pairs. Google Translator Toolkit is a language translation service for professional and amateur translators that builds on Google Translate and makes translation faster and easier.

    • Democracy in the decade of Google

      ‘This is the greatest explosion of access to information, the potential for creativity and the ability to connect and communicate the world has ever seen.’

  • AstroTurf

    • NYT: ‘FAIR Had a Point’

      Seelye’s defense is alarming; does a reporter at the New York Times really believe that single-payer has been covered “many times” by the paper? The Times, like the rest of the corporate media, has given the issue scant attention (FAIR Media Advisory, 3/6/09). FAIR is encouraged by Hoyt’s acknowledgment that the argument deserves fuller coverage; let’s hope the editors of the Times see it that way, too.

    • New York Times Admits Shutting Out Single-Payer
    • Chamber of Commerce Launches Massive “American Free Enterprise” Campaign

      Calling it the “American Free Enterprise” campaign, the Chamber’s TV ads use beautiful images of farmers, mothers, flags, small businesses, football, flags, steelworkers, lemonade stands, flags. You get the picture. Amusingly, they sneak in a few pictures of Wall Street banker-types shaking hands over and over again.

  • Internet/Censorship/Web Abuse/Rights

    • Public Knowledge Tells FCC Movie Industry Plan for Set-Top Boxes Will Hurt Consumers

      A proposal by the motion picture industry to use “selectable output control” to hobble the functions of set top boxes won’t stop movie theft but will harm consumers, Public Knowledge told the Federal Communications Commission

      In an Oct. 14 letter to William Lake, the chief of the Commission’s Media Bureau, Public Knowledge responded to arguments filed by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) that such control was needed to bring movies to the public faster than they otherwise might.

    • YouTube’s Bandwidth Bill Is Zero. Welcome to the New Net

      YouTube may pay less to be online than you do, a new report on internet connectivity suggests, calling into question a recent analysis arguing Google’s popular video service is bleeding money and demonstrating how the internet has continued to morph to fit user’s behavior.

      In fact, with YouTube’s help, Google is now responsible for at least 6 percent of the internet’s traffic, and likely more — and may not be paying an ISP at all to serve up all that content and attached ads.

    • Hidden High Court Injuctions

      The Twitter vs Trafigura case continues though it really is the Guardian newspaper and Wikileaks who have been driving this amazing story that illustrates the total lack of freedom of expression granted to the citizens of Britain.

      For those who haven’t been following the case: The Guardian was attempting to report on Trafigura, a multi-national oil and commodity trader, but received legal threats from Carter-Ruck. This led to an injunction stopping them from publishing their findings. Yet not only were they prevented from publishing their article but the injunction also prevented them from reporting about the injunction!

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • What Kind Of Industry Sets Up A Group To Purposely Limit What Consumers Want? Apparently Hollywood

      We’ve been hearing from more and more movie makers who are recognizing how treating their fans right, while giving them a reason to buy is a much more effective means of reaching an audience than starting off on the assumption that everyone is a criminal. The movie business has always been based on selling ancillary products.

    • Copyright and Morals

      Morality is used in the Copyright Wars as a way to cover up the inability to justify expansion of rights on economic grounds.

    • California County Hoarding Map Data Ordered to Pay $500,000

      A California county’s three-year battle to prevent a nonprofit group from obtaining public mapping data has ended disastrously for the county after it was ordered by a court to pay the group $500,000 in legal costs.

    • MPAA: Antipiracy is now ‘content protection’

      Among the three who were quietly ushered out of their posts at the Motion Picture Association of America three weeks ago was Greg Goeckner, the MPAA’s general counsel. The others were the MPAA’s director of worldwide antipiracy operations and its deputy director of Internet antipiracy. Goeckner will remain with the MPAA until the end of the year.

    • Verizon Not Liable for Ringtone Performance Fee

      When your co-worker’s ringtone constantly fills the air with the latest auto-tune hit, it is most definitely annoying, but is it also a violation of copyright?

      The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) claims that when someone’s cell phone rings and one of its members’ songs plays as a ringtone, the wireless provider should pay performance fees for the right to use that song.

    • Judge: ringtones aren’t performances, so no royalties

      Songwriters and publishers won’t be able to collect royalties each time a cellphone plays an annoying musical ringtone in public, thanks to a federal judge’s ruling that ringtones aren’t public performances.

    • The Pirate Bay and Youtube

      Like many other people, it used to bother me that The Pirate Bay was being sued for distributing hashes of copyright-restricted material whereas Youtube could distribute the material itself without fear of punishment.

    • Implementing a sensible copyright: “FLOW-IT”

      The other reason I picked the nickname “FLOW-IT” for this idea, though, is that works licensed in this way “flow” will flow in a fairly reasonable time from the traditional copyright zone into the free culture zone. It’s a way to merge more traditionally-funded artist works into the free-culture “Commons.” This is something that half-way solutions like the Creative Commons “NonCommercial” licenses just can’t do on their own (because they never really make it into the Commons).

Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day

Internet Video Celebrity Caitlin Hill 22 (2007)

Digital Tipping Point is a Free software-like project where the raw videos are code. You can assist by participating.

IRC: #boycottnovell @ FreeNode: October 17th, 2009

Posted in IRC Logs at 6:34 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Read the log

Enter the IRC channel now

To use your own IRC client, join channel #boycottnovell in FreeNode.

Novell News Summary – Part III: SCO, SAP, GroupWise Abandonment in LA

Posted in Google, Identity Management, Mail, Microsoft, NetWare, Novell, SCO, UNIX, Virtualisation, Xen at 11:33 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Arches at National Park

Summary: A mixture of Novell news from the past week

MORE articles than usual have mentioned Novell in the past week, so here is a quick rundown.

Read the rest of this entry »

Novell News Summary – Part II: SLED on Compaq/HP, Other Cases of SUSE Support and SP3

Posted in HP, Microsoft, Novell, SLES/SLED, Xandros at 9:44 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: Despite being an idle week for SUSE, there is good news from HP and also a service pack

Read the rest of this entry »

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