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Links 14/4/2010: Linux 2.6.34 Reviewed; OpenGL 4.0 Linux Driver; Lightworks Open Source

Posted in News Roundup at 4:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Linux system flaws can’t pass Buck Security
  • Bisigi Themes Remix Linux in Eye-Opening Ways

    Finding new, good-looking, and complete themes for Linux systems can be a serious scavenger hunt. The Bisigi Project provides 13 free, well-rounded themes you can install all at once, customized for your monitor size. Take a peek at five of them.

  • It’s the 21st Century. Do you know where your files are?

    This does not mean that you can easily find everything that you might consider a “file” or similar entity in Linux. There is a good chance that your email software uses some bizarro file that you can’t easily see inside of. (I use alpine which puts the emails inside a text file, but hardy anybody does that.) There are “hidden” files in Linux just like in Windows (in Linux, everything that starts with a “dot” (“.”) is automatically “hidden” …. meaning you can’t see it unless you “unhide” that which is hidden). There are other strangeosities as well.

  • New Site Launch: LinuxExchange.org

    I’m happy to announce that I just launched a new site: LinuxExchange

    LinuxExchange is “StackOverflow for Linux and Open Source” and is built on the StackExchange platform. That means it’s a collaboratively edited question and answer site about Linux and Open Source with a workflow somewhere between the forums of LinuxQuestions.org and the Mediawiki-based LQ Wiki.

  • rPath Enhances Intelligent Linux Patching Capabilities in Next-Generation System Automation Platform

    rPath, an innovator in automating system provisioning and maintenance, today announced enhancements to the intelligent patching capabilities of its next-generation system automation platform. Specifically, rPath now automates inventory discovery, allows users to “cherry pick” updates and errata for incremental updates, and simplifies the user experience for Linux patching and system administration. To encourage Red Hat Network (RHN) Satellite users to try the rPath platform, the company has launched its “Satellite Swap-Out” promotional offer. For existing RHN Satellite customers, rPath will match or beat their current subscription to RHN Satellite with a richer, more complete solution.

  • Desktop

    • Adobe, Choose Your Allies in the Apple War

      Two clear Allies for Adobe come to light immediately — desktop Linux, in the form of Canonical’s Ubuntu operating system, which has been making significant strides in usability of late, and of course Google’s Android smartphone OS.

    • Cool free stuff

      Going through the article brought me back to my Windows days, when I would scour download sites (CNET’s Download.com being a favorite) for free applications and utilities. Nowadays, since I only use Linux and Mac OS X, I’ve done a lot less of that. After all, there are boatloads of free programs for Linux, and I mostly use OpenOffice for work on my Macbook.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux: 2.6.34-rc4, “Hunting A Really Annoying VM Regression”

      “It’s been two weeks rather than the usual one, because we’ve been hunting a really annoying VM regression that not a lot of people seem to have seen, but I didn’t want to release an -rc4 with it,” began Linux creator Linus Torvalds, announcing the 2.6.34-rc4 Linux kernel. He explained, “we had the choice of either reverting all the anon-vma scalability improvements, or finding out exactly what caused the regression and fixing it. And we got pretty close to the point where I was going to just revert it all.”

    • Kernel Log: Coming in 2.6.34 (Part 1) – Network Support

      Expected for release in May, Linux kernel version 2.6.34 contains several new network drivers and various advancements designed to improve network performance or increase network configuration flexibility, which will particularly impact virtualisation.

    • Graphics Stack

      • NVIDIA Puts Out Its OpenGL 4.0 Linux Driver

        The OpenGL 4.0 specification was released towards the middle of March alongside an OpenGL 3.3 update, which NVIDIA was quick to capitalize upon the 3.x update just days later with new drivers for supported operating systems. NVIDIA wasn’t immediate in delivering OpenGL 4.0 support, since they didn’t have any hardware at the time capable of supporting this newest specification. Now that the GeForce GTX 470/480 GPUs are out there and other new DirectX 11.0 / OpenGL 4.0 capable hardware is on the way, NVIDIA has put out its OpenGL 4.0 driver update for Linux and Windows.

      • Reworking OpenGL ES In Mesa, Gallium3D

        In May of last year there were Gallium3D state trackers published for OpenGL ES 1.1 and OpenGL ES 2.0. These were among the first major working state trackers for this new graphics architecture, but in the months since they have continued to receive much affection from a few developers and continue to improve. The OpenGL ES 1.1/2.0 support though may now be reworked by Kristian Høgsberg.

  • Instructionals

  • Distributions

    • Fedora

      • Fedora presents…Graphics Test Week this week

        The Fedora project announces that this week is Graphics Test Week. This is the highlight of the Fedora 13 Test Day cycle, with Test Days for NVIDIA, ATI/AMD and Intel graphics all falling this week. Tuesday April 13th is NVIDIA Test Day, Wednesday April 14th is ATI/AMD Test Day, and Thursday April 15th is Intel graphics Test Day.

      • It’s Time To Test The Graphics In Fedora 13

        Fedora 13 will be officially released next month and while we have already used it in testing out the Nouveau Gallium3D drivers and trying out the new Intel graphics, this week Red Hat is hosting community test days for the graphics stack in Fedora 13.

      • Never a dull moment, no. 98.

        At 10:00 am US Eastern time (1400 UTC), Fedora 13 Beta is released. The Beta is our last milestone before the final release of Fedora 13. We’d like to have as many people test it as possible. It’s available in a “Live ISO” format you can write not only to CD DVD, but also to a USB key, and boot off the USB key. I really prefer the USB key, because you can update the key with fixes as you use it using the “persistence” feature. It also gives you nifty options we created along the way, like an encrypted user data area, very fast booting, and very fast installation to hard disk as well. Who loves ya, baby?

    • Ubuntu

      • Ubuntu on a Dime
      • From Dapper To Lucid, Four Years Of Ubuntu Benchmarks

        Last week we shared that we were benchmarking Ubuntu’s current and past LTS releases and began by running graphics benchmarks looking at how the proprietary drivers from the past compare to open-source drivers from the present, but now we have our assortment of system benchmarks to publish from the Long-Term Support releases of Ubuntu 6.06.1, Ubuntu 8.04.4, and an Ubuntu 10.04 development snapshot. In this article, we are looking at how Ubuntu’s performance has evolved over the past four years.

      • An Empirical Investigation of Cloud Computing (C2) as an Option for Liberia

        I opted to use Ubuntu Linux 9.10 Server which includes the Enterprise Cloud Server powered by Eucalyptus as the operating platform.

      • Ubuntu’s New Web Office Integration

        Desktop Integration with the cloud is hot news. Ubuntu One is a great example of this. Currently Ubuntu One integrates file storage, contacts and notes sync, and now you can even buy music from the online store, delivered straight to the Rythmbox media player. But for some devices, integration with the cloud isn’t just a nice feature, it completely changes the user experience (UX). Take for instance a low powered, possibly mobile/embedded system with limited processing power and memory. A cloud based service for these devices could allow resource intensive tasks to be offloaded to an online server somewhere, greatly improving the UX. One set of tasks that are used often but can put a strain on resources are related to office document editing.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Why iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad Owners Should Use Linux

      And as for missing functionality, this is open source. Where there are itches they are going to be scratched. Now that this library has reached its 1.0.0 release, developers are more likely to start incorporating it into their applications. There are python libs for libimobiledevice and related infrastructure, which will enable rapid application development utilising the functionality of this library. I know that it’s already part of the install for Ubuntu Lucid. Furthermore, with the plans for the UbuntuOne service to incorporate a music store, the environment for the iPhone on linux is looking a whole lot healthier. So to butcher an overused film reference, “if you come, they will build it”.

    • Linux-ready trace port analyzer supports Intel CPUs

      Arium announced a new JTAG debugger In-Target Probe (ITP) trace port analyzer device for debugging Linux-based devices. The LX-1000 stores events in on-board high-speed RAM, and initially targets Intel processor platforms.

    • pocket hd multimedia dream device

      If you’re looking for a handheld hd multimedia device, your search ends here. This is such a cool device.
      The only downside is apparently the korean manufacturer can’t keep up with demand as it’s fully sold out at the moment of this writing.

    • Satellite STB streams HD video to smartphones

      Marusys is shipping a Linux-based, PVR-ready satellite set-top box (STB) with a DVB-S/S2 tuner and HDMI output. The initial MS630S and MS850S versions of the DVB-S/S2 HD PVR receiver design are equipped with a Magnum Semiconductor DX6225 transcoder chip, and offer HD recording, as well as WiFi streaming to the Apple iPhone.

    • Nokia

    • Android

      • Motorola Revises Android 2.1 Details for Handsets
      • HTC launches Desire – at last, an iPhone killer

        The company at the centre of the war between Google and Apple launches its latest handset in the UK this week – with experts saying that it is the equal of the iPhone.

        The HTC Desire is similar to Google’s Nexus One smartphone – indeed HTC is the company that manufactures the Nexus – but it has several extras that have reviewers salivating, and the handset is being touted as a real alternative to Apple’s all-conquering iPhone.

      • Intel Ports Android to Atom-Based Smart Phones

        After dominating the desktop market for years, Intel recognizes they have a long road ahead of them in terms of smart phones. Android, as a platform, was initially designed to run on handsets powered by processors made with Arm technology.

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Lenovo’s Ideapad U1 Hybrid “coming soon”

        Lenovo’s much anticipated Ideapad U1 Hybrid device looks like it may be hitting retail shortly. The official Lenovo shop website is listing the U1 Hybrid as “coming soon” and is letting people register their interest. As a quick reminder, the U1 Hybrid is a mashup between 11.6-inch CULV notebook and Snapdragon tablet.

    • Tablets

Free Software/Open Source

  • Republicans Turn to Open Source Asterisk

    Open source software is being used today by all types of companies and organizations—even the Republican Party is an adopter.

  • ZapThink Startup Clinic: How to Make Money By Giving your Product Away for Free

    ZapThink has spoken to hundreds of entrepreneurs at IT startups over the last decade, and occasionally executives tell us they are giving away their product or service for free, sometimes (but not always) as open source. Our response? We ask what their business model is. If their reply is that “free” is their business model, that clues us into what they’re really doing. ZapThink has a word that describes companies that confuse free with a business model. That word is hobby.

    A business model, after all, is nothing more than how a company plans to make money. The old dot.com era joke that we’ll give away our product but make it up on volume doesn’t wash in today’s more sober times. You have to make money somehow! However, giving away your product or service for free can be a successful strategy, as long as you truly have a rational business model to back it up.

  • Online Office In Ubuntu With Zoho Webservice

    Canonical developer Jamie Bennett presented a new project 2 days ago: Zoho Webservice, which is basically the online office suite Zoho (which comes with tools such as: Presentations, Spreadsheet and Word Processor), but with Ubuntu integration.

  • Twitter Open-sources the Home of Its Social Graph

    Twitter today open-sourced the code that it used to build its database of users and manage their relationships to one another, called FlockDB. The move comes shortly after Twitter released its Gizzard framework, which it uses to query the FlockDB distributed data store up to 10,000 times a second without creating a logjam.

  • Lightworks

  • Apache/Hadoop

  • SaaS

    • Eucalyptus, GroundWork As Allies: Cloud Stack Coming?

      An important alignment occurs April 7 that will probably win little fanfare. Eucalyptus Systems, the supplier of open source APIs that are Amazon EC2 compatible, has teamed up with GroundWork, a supplier of data center systems management. GroundWork wants to gaze into the private cloud, which in the future, may often be a Eucalyptus-based stack.

  • Databases

  • Business

  • Government

    • Space Available: NASA Embraces Open Government Initiative

      Whether using social networks to allow students to interact directly with astronauts, or creating a cloud computing platform to give unprecedented access to scientific data, NASA’s embrace of Open Government has made it a leader among federal agencies.

  • Licensing

  • Programming

    • Resetting PHP 6

      Rightly or wrongly, many in our community see Perl 6 as the definitive example of vaporware. But what about PHP 6? This release was first discussed by the PHP core developers back in 2005. There have been books on the shelves purporting to cover PHP 6 since at least 2008. But, in March 2010, the PHP 6 release is not out – in fact, it is not even close to out. Recent events suggest that PHP 6 will not be released before 2011 – if, indeed, it is released at all.


  • Google Unveils New Google Docs Platform, Ditches Gears
  • Mini-review of the iPad

    The gadget lover in me wants one, but the part of me that cares about open source and tinkering is stronger. I’m with Cory Doctorow on this one. The iPad is gorgeous, but it’s still not worth it for me.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Juxtaposition of the day award…

      …today comes from Liverpool, where the local council (who we have praised in the past for facing-down the surveillance state) have mooted the idea of banning the word ‘obesity’ from council literature.

    • 15,000 wrongly branded criminals

      The blunders by the Criminal Records Bureau, a Home Office agency, amount to around seven smears every day.

      The victims discovered they had been branded sex offenders, violent thugs or fraudsters when they had a CRB check before a new job. Many went through lengthy appeals to clear their names.

      Our Freedom Of Information probe found the CRB coughed up an incredible £290,000 last year alone in “apology payments” to the worst-affected victims.

    • Holidaymakers Back Use Of Full-Body Scanners

      The approval rate was far higher for the UK than many other countries, according to a poll by security group Unisys.

      Of the 10 other nations investigated, as many as one in three people in Germany and Belgium would object to the machines.

    • Endpoint Security: How to Protect Data on a Laptop
  • Environment

    • Ethanol industry rolls out national ad campaign

      Growth Energy, a producer group based in Washington D.C., unveiled six TV commercials at ten press conferences across the country, including an event at the Minnesota State Capitol in Saint Paul.

    • Corn Ethanol Industry Trying to Butter Up Congress, Public

      The ad campaign seeks to put a positive spin on ethanol, increase the market for ethanol, and counteract the idea that growing corn and other crops for fuel displaces food crops and causes higher food prices.

    • Dispatch: Environmental In-Fighting

      “I have to admit to some schadenfreude when the organic, ‘environmentalist’ crowd turns on itself,” says Stier. “Ms. Waters was a hero of the sustainable food movement, but now they are turning on her because of very low levels of heavy metals in this compost, less even than you’d get from a vitamin supplement. The irony, of course, is that using biosolids is a wonderfully environmentalist thing to do, since it safely recycles waste materials; the ‘environmentalists’ are on the wrong side of this environmental issue.”

    • ACSH Makes Alice Waters a Poster Child for Toxic Sludge

      Blogger Jill Richardson has also appealed to Waters, writing that ACSH still thinks “DDT should be legal. Don’t let them count you as being on their side” in the sewage sludge fight. Richardson notes that San Francisco’s own testing found nasty toxins including dioxins in its phony organic compost.

  • Finance

    • Banks Falter in Rules Fight

      Senate Democrats, resisting a last-ditch lobbying push from big Wall Street firms, are moving toward a sweeping revamp of financial regulation that would squeeze banks’ lucrative derivatives-trading business.

    • As losses slow, big banks eye big profits in Q1

      Banks have been taking advantage of low rates to borrow cheaply and plow the funds into higher-yielding bonds and other securities, a practice known as “playing the spread.” If rates rise this year or next as some analysts predict, that revenue source could be threatened, Ely said.

    • Pulitzer finalist: McClatchy probes of Goldman Sachs, Moody’s and SEC

      McClatchy Washington Bureau reporters Greg Gordon, Chris Adams and Kevin G. Hall were named finalists for the Pulitzer Prize in national reporting Monday for their stories examining Wall Street’s role in the nation’s financial collapse.

    • WaMu Chief Killinger Didn’t Trust Goldman Sachs, E-Mails Show

      Washington Mutual Inc.’s former Chief Executive Officer, Kerry Killinger, didn’t trust Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to give the bank advice in 2007 as it slid toward collapse, according to e-mail released by congressional investigators.

    • Goldman co-head of IB Asia ex-Japan to retire
    • Your Tax Dollars at War: More Than 53% of Your Tax Payment Goes to the Military

      If you’re like me, now that we’re in the week that federal income taxes are due, you are finally starting to collect your records and prepare for the ordeal. Either way, whether you are a procrastinator like me, or have already finished and know how much you have paid to the government, it is a good time to stop and consider how much of your money goes to pay for our bloated and largely useless and pointless military.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Tea Party and GOP Working Together in Wisconsin

      Even though most Tea Partiers insist they are independent from mainstream political parties, members of Wisconsin’s tea party are openly working hand in glove with Republican leaders.

    • Wisconsin Tea Party Members Work Closely With GOP

      Despite trumpeting their independence from the political mainstream, Wisconsin tea party members are taking a different tack than those in other states by working hand-in-glove with GOP leaders.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • The Real Problem With Internet Comments Isn’t Anonymity

      As we’ve noted before, Techdirt gets a lot of comments, including the occasional unfriendly one from a jerk. Sometimes this jerk is anonymous — but if they’re a jerk, it doesn’t much matter if they’re anonymous or using their real name. With that in mind, it’s nice to see that some of the sites in the NYT article above are actually looking at ways to tackle the real issue, and not just anonymity — though there are plenty that still seem to think everybody will be nice if they use their real name.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • RIAA Insists That Musicians Can’t Make Money Without The RIAA

      First of all, there aren’t that many folks who claim that touring alone is enough of a business model, and the rest of the post doesn’t focus on “touring alone,” but on a variety of alternative business models, which makes it a weird and entirely misleading title. In fact, a year ago, we explained why (just like the RIAA is pointing out) touring alone probably isn’t enough to replace the revenues of the recording industry — but that if you combined touring with other business models, it certainly could work quite well. But by using “touring” as the peg, the RIAA can debunk touring alone and pretend (falsely) that it’s debunked the entire space of alternative (smarter) business models.

    • Give It Away And Pray: Maybe Not A Business Model, But Still Important For Artists

      We never know what the world will bring us. Adhering to a business model may make us feel secure, but the most exciting possibilities and opportunities are in the space of not knowing. In Art, unlike Business, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you’re doing it right.

    • Feds raise questions about big media’s piracy claims

      Congress tasked the GAO in April 2009 with reviewing the efforts to quantify the size and scope of piracy, including the impacts of Web piracy to the film and music industries. In a 32-page report issued Monday, the GAO said most of the published information, anecdotal evidence, and records show that piracy is a drag on the U.S. economy, tax revenue, and in some cases potentially threatens national security and public health. But the problem is, according to the GAO, the data used to quantify piracy isn’t reliable.

    • Newspapers/Copyrights

      • Online newsroom earns Pulitzer, Post trumps Times

        ProPublica, an independent, non-profit online newsroom, became the first online organization to win a Pulitzer Prize.

      • Icon Hank Williams receives Pulitzer citation

        Hank Williams, the country pioneer who is among the most influential singer-songwriters in music, was given a special Pulitzer Prize citation.

        The Pulitzer board awarded the late singer for his lifetime achievement, based on a confidential survey of experts in popular music.

      • In Aggregation Case, Israeli Court Says Online Ads Aren’t Copyrightable (Guest Blog Post)

        Aggregation/index sites are popping up everywhere, trying to solve this problem while aggregating ads (and other materials) from various sites. Yet those aggregation sites encounter potential legal hurdles, such as trespass to chattels (as we saw in eBay Inc. v. Bidder’s Edge, Inc.) or copyright infringement.

      • The Bias of Veteran Journalists

        But within those caveats, I’ve always maintained that the majority of professional print journalists, anyway, try very, very hard to get the story right. But recently, I had an experience that gave me a new perspective on the issue.

      • How To Piss People Off: Publish A Book Using Their Tweets Without Asking Them First

        So, by not involving the Tweet authors in the publishing of Tweet Nothings, the publishers not only attracted the ire of the wronged authors, but also missed out on a huge opportunity for free, viral promotion. After the exchange with Barnes, the publisher, Peter Pauper Press, issued an official apology in which it said:

        We regret that we did not contact the people whose quotes we used in advance. We will be contacting each one with an apology. In the meantime, we are ceasing to sell the book in all venues and will not resume sales until everyone quoted in the book is satisfied with our response.

      • Australia anti-piracy group tries to threaten EarSucker, fails

        Reproduced in full is our communications between Music Industry Piracy Investigations Pty Limited (MIPI), the anti-piracy organization for the Australian music industry and our crack legal adviser (unaccredited) who watches a lot of Judge Judy and should be fired. Regardless of his shoddy credentials, he does a marvelous job of explaining why we’re not quaking in our boots from some hollow legal threat from Australia. Here’s the original post where someone leaked Lady Gaga’s Sydney, Australia itinerary that spawned such insane legal actions. As per our disclosure policy, we are reporting this legal exhange in full for the benefit of our readers.

      • What Is So Special About A Movie’s Theatrical Release?

        Given the example of how Paranormal Activity only screened in nationwide cities after fans demanded it, offering movies that people actually want to see in theaters may be a better way of filling seats. Or maybe there really is no reason to go to movie theaters anymore.

Clip of the Day

SourceCode Season 3 – Episode 10: Immigration Emergency? (2006)

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