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06.20.10

Links 20/6/2010: Droid Raves, Compiere Bought

Posted in News Roundup at 1:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Be a pal; share Linux with your friends and family

    Are you the local computer boffin in your social circle? Tired of forever having to clean off that annoying fake super anti-virus 2010 trojan? Well, friends shouldn’t let friends run Windows. Be a friend to your friends.

  • Why everyone should use Linux

    Yes, everyone. Even the most hardcore Linux hater should run Linux. While this sounds absolutely contrary to simple logic, it aligns perfectly well with cunning logic, as I’m going to elaborate here. We’re not talking politics, ideology, zeal, Borg-like assimilation, or anything of that sort. We’re not talking cutting your costs in dire situation caused by some would-be financial crisis. We’re not talking freedom, free software or replacing existing business models with one that revolves around open-source.

    We’re talking money.

    Oh, you won’t get any money from running Linux, not in most cases, anyway. But you will save money. And not by spending less on Linux. You will spend less on Windows. Sounds tricky? It’s not. Follow me.

  • Applications

    • Turpial 1.3.3 – A native Twitter client for Linux

      The whole package is put together very well. The menu is inuitive and easy to to understand, which (once you have logged in) will be easy to navigate and tailor to your needs. Turpial 1.3.3 appears a stable product and even during busy periods it has not yet offered up any problems.

  • Distributions

    • Fedora

      • I am Fedora

        Back in 1999, my employer, Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center put a Red Hat Linux system running an Alpha processor on my desk. From there I was supposed to do write parallel code for a Red Hat Linux beowulf cluster. It was tricky without some basic desktop tools.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Droid/Motorola

      • Improvements to Be Seen in the Wish List of Motorola Droid

        The Motorola Droid has never been an “iPhone killer,” but still one can regard it as a good alternative to the iPhone for Verizon customers.

        But one should admit that the Droid was never a perfect handset. As Motorola is going to offer a Droid sequel this month, I think it would be right to go over the areas that are hoped to be found on board of the new handset.

      • The iPhone 4 faces stiff competition

        The Droid Incredible ($200) is also in great demand. This high-end phone runs Android. It features 8GB of internal storage. You can add up to 16GB of additional storage with a microSD card.

        The Incredible has a brilliant 800×480 OLED screen. This type of screen offers better, brighter colors than other screens. However, it can be a problem outdoors in bright sunlight. An optical joystick button is placed on the front of the phone to help you position the cursor precisely.

      • Smartphone Upgrades: Keeping up with the Droids and iPhones

        A whole seven months ago, back in November of 2009, I bought myself a Motorola Droid. At the time, the phone was considered to be absolutely state-of-the-art, with a high-resolution display, advanced Android 2.0 software, voice recognition, integrated GPS, 600Mhz OMAP processor, and a nifty slide-out keyboard design.

        In those seven months Google’s Android OS has advanced at a pace equivalent to bacterial gestation in a petri dish.

        Seemingly overnight, the platform has exploded, spawning many new phones from all the major carriers and TWO major OS upgrades, “Eclair” (2.1) which debuted on the Nexus One and now “Froyo” (2.2), which was announced at the recent Google I/O conference.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Business

    • Open source not immune to ERP vendor consolidation trend

      In a sense, it doesn’t matter as much as it would if Compiere’s original code base was proprietary. One of the tenents of open source is that no matter what the owner of the code does, the users of the code continue in their rights to use, extend, enhance, and distribute the code. The Adempiere fork of Compiere is evidence of this.

      To my knowledge, this is the first instance of an open source ERP/CRM developer being acquired by a vendor of proprietary software. It will be interesting to see whether Compiere’s users are helped or hindered by this acquisition.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Open Access/Content

    • Open Access Science ?= Open Source Software

      As a software engineer who works on open source scientific applications and frameworks, when I look at this, I scratch my head and wonder “why don’t they just do the equivalent of a code review”? And that’s really, where the germ of the idea behind this blog posting started. What if the scientific publishing process were more like an open source project? How would the need for peer-review be balanced with the need to publish? Who should bear the costs? Can a publishing model be created that minimizes bias and allows good ideas to emerge in the face of scientific groupthink?

Leftovers

  • Your Browser in Five Years

    What will your Web browser look like in 2015? Five years doesn’t always bring dramatic change to some technologies–today’s desktop PC, for instance, isn’t that different from its 2005 predecessor–but browsers are undergoing major changes that will alter our day-to-day computing lives.

  • The internet: Everything you ever need to know

    In spite of all the answers the internet has given us, its full potential to transform our lives remains the great unknown. Here are the nine key steps to understanding the most powerful tool of our age – and where it’s taking us

  • B.C. school yearbooks to be reprinted after teacher cut out student’s photo

    A Vancouver Island board of education has decided to reprint a middle-school’s yearbooks after a teacher took scissors to 150 copies last week and clipped out the photo of a Grade 10 student because of comments he made about the school principal.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Airport security: Intent to deceive?
    • Hot Dog! Stand Back 200 Feet!

      Last week, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued a statement calling for large-type warning labels on the foods that kids most commonly choke on — grapes, nuts, carrots, candy and public enemy No. 1: the frank. Then the lead author of the report, pediatric emergency room doctor Gary Smith, went one step further.

    • Homeland Security cracks down on canoeists

      As someone who believes that our nation has a right to enforce its borders, I should have been gratified when the Immigrations official at the border saw the canoe on our car and informed us that anyone who crossed the nearby international waterway illegally would be arrested and fined as much as $5,000.

      Trouble is, the river wasn’t the Rio Grande, but the St. Croix, which defines the border between Maine and New Brunswick, Canada. And the threat of arrest wasn’t aimed at illegal immigrants or terrorists but at canoeists like myself.

      The St. Croix is a wild river that flows through unpopulated country. Primitive campsites are maintained on both shores, some accessible by logging roads, but most reached only by water or by bushwhacking for miles through thick forest and marsh. There are easier ways to sneak into the U.S. from Canada. According to Homeland Security regulations, however, canoeists who begin their trip in Canada cannot step foot on American soil, thus putting half the campsites off limits. It is not an idle threat; the U.S. Border Patrol makes regular helicopter flights down the river.

  • Environment

    • Will the post-oil future be bicycle-free?

      U. S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood may soon be nominated for heresy-of-the-year award for an impromptu speech at the 2010 National Bike Summit in March. In that speech he said federal transportation policy will no longer favor automobiles over bicyclists and walkers.

    • OneBusAway: An Open Source Tool for Finding a Bus Fast
    • Steve the Narc
    • BP Oil Spill Crisis Reveals Past/Present ‘Short-Termism’ and Future Opportunities

      To blame or not blame BP is really not the point. BP must take its share of responsibility along with other US private companies involved. But the deeper lessons of the oil spill concern the future of our energy supplies, of regulation, and the shape of our society and economy.

    • Seeing Past the BP Spill

      And oil spills are far from the worst environmental disasters we’ve unleashed and are in the process of unleashing through the routine operation of our economy as currently designed. Climate change will over the next century almost certainly prove far more destructive to the natural systems and human communities of the Gulf than any oil spill ever could, and that’s a problem the Deepwater rig would have worsened if it had worked perfectly, as part of its successful operation.

    • Barriers to news coverage of Gulf of Mexico oil spill remain despite promises

      Journalists covering the Gulf of Mexico oil spill have been yelled at, kicked off public beaches and islands and threatened with arrest in the nearly three weeks since the government promised improved media access.

    • BP’s plan: Raise $50 billion, sue business partners

      BP is trying to raise 50 billion dollars to cover the cost of the Gulf of Mexico spill and is preparing to sue its partners in the oil field, British newspapers said on Sunday.

    • Mesocosms set up and running in Svalbard

      Whilst the mesocosms were being set up, more than 30 scientists arrived here from all over Europe, including the Netherlands, UK, Norway, France and Germany. Over the next few weeks, they’ll be working hard, collecting scientific data that will be carefully examined and statistically analyzed during the following months, perhaps for even a year. Eventually, the results from the mesocosm experiments will be published in scientific journals. Only then can we begin to understand in more detail what the effects of ocean acidification from increased CO2 in the atmosphere might be in Arctic waters.

    • A New, Bold Plan for a Carbon-Neutral UK by 2030

      Carbon neutrality by 2030 is the new standard for climate policies, and again the UK is leading North America in the climate debate with a bold national-level proposal about how to get there. The Centre for Alternative Technology just launched zerocarbonbritain2030 (ZCB2030), a collaborative project showing one possible scenario for making the entire UK carbon-neutral by 2030.

    • Group: Climate bill could mean 540,000 new jobs per year

      New rules to cap US carbon emissions and promote clean energy could create as many as 540,000 US jobs a year, a green group claimed Tuesday, as the BP oil spill fueled debate over reform.

  • Finance

    • Financial Reform Bill Will Allow SEC to Fund Itself

      As financial regulatory reform takes its final shape in a conference committee led by Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., and Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., members of the committee have voted to allow the Securities and Exchange Commission to fund itself, according to FOXBusiness.com. The SEChas asked to be self-funded for quite some time because it would allow the agency to step up its enforcement and investigative efforts.

    • Trade war? Bill would ban government from buying Chinese

      The US government would be barred from buying any Chinese goods or services under legislation unveiled Friday by US senators angry at Beijing’s policy of buying only from domestic sources.

    • Bailed-out banker praises capitalism, attacks parasites

      Matt Ridley’s book The Rational Optimist is about mankind’s long-term ability to make things better, not worse. Sounds great!

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Is Copyright Bill C-32 Being Astroturfed?

      Early last week, we wrote a post that offered both some information and perspective about Bill C-32, which, if passed, is slated to revamp Canada’s copyright law.

      As with any contentious issue, the post generated a good number of comments. Yet, as the days went on, it became apparent that some of the pro–Bill C-32 comments were unusually uniform and very…(how do we put this?) “on message.”

      Now, we have learned, it seems possible that the comments were a result of an astroturfing campaign.

      On his blog, law professor Michael Geist points to a site that bills itself as Balanced Copyright Reform. The gist, according to Geist:

      The heart of the site (which requires full registration) is a daily action item page that encourages users to “make a difference, everyday.” [Each] list of ten items is a mix of suggested tweets, blog comments, and newspaper article feedback. Each item includes instructions for what should be done and quick links to the target site.

      As of June 17, the last of the daily action items was “Comment on Torontoist article on Bill C-32.”

    • Copyright astroturfers target Torontoist

      The popular Torontoist blog found that all the comments on its coverage of the new Canadian copyright law were a little…similar. Turns out that Torontoist has been targetted by the astroturf website that the US record-labels started, pretending to be just a group of Canadian citizens worried about copyright.

    • Canadian copyright astroturf site gives marching orders to its users
  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

  • Intellectual Monopolies

Clip of the Day

CLUG Talk – 10 June 2008 – Net Booting (2008)


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