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Links 1/9/2010: Linux in Ukraine, ‘Green Party’ of Belgium Moves to GNU/Linux Desktops

Posted in News Roundup at 3:01 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Aussie gamer loses Playstation court fight

    A gamer who sued Sony over an upgrade that removed functions from his Playstation 3 console has lost a court claim against the company.

    Adelaide man Michael Trebilcock wanted $800 in compensation, claiming the upgrade meant the console could no longer be used as a computer.

  • Ukraine to Create is Own GNU/Linux Distro

    I’ve been writing for a while about Russia’s on-off idea of creating its own GNU/Linux distro. It looks like Ukraine is following suit. Via Google Translate:

    its purpose is to optimize the expenditure of budgetary funds and the solution using unlicensed software in state bodies.

    According to estimates from officials, the savings of switching apparatus to free software can be 87%.

  • Desktop

    • An Application Dock for Linux

      I am a PC, Mac, and Linux user. At night I dual boot between Vista and Ubuntu and during the day I use a Mac almost exclusively. As a result, there are many things I like about using my Mac at work and would not mind seeing them on my home desktop. Since buying a Mac right now for personal use is out of the question I have to make do with what I already have. At any rate, one of the Mac features I actually like is the Dock. For those of you who are not Mac users, the Dock is basically a bar at the bottom of the desktop where application icons can be displayed that will launch the application once clicked on. It’s attractive and useful and I have wanted one on my non-Mac desktops for some time now.

    • My Linux Experience

      Long story short, I use Ubuntu because it was the first distro that actually worked without pulling teeth, and it still works fine for everything I do. I’ve had a few issues with it, I think they push some changes too soon without ironing bugs out – which incidentally is why I don’t use Fedora, I like my stuff to tend towards stability rather than cutting edge. I’ve tried Debian but it seems TOO slow moving. Ubuntu just works, it does everything I want it to, and I have never really been left wanting.

    • Is your company afraid of Linux? (3 of 3)

      Most Linux distributions are free to download and use, although, there are a few Linux enterprise shops that provide licensing and professional support for their product. SUSE (now a division of Novell) and RedHat are two of the most popular. SUSE’s enterprise server license ranges form $400 to $1500. RedHat is anywhere from $400 to $1,200. These license plans “include” professional support anywhere from email-only support to 24×7 phone support. Each license is renewable yearly because of the licenses focus around their professional support plans.

    • BE: Political party moving to a complete open source desktop

      Ecolo, a green political party in Belgium, is planning to complete its move to a complete open source desktop system by the end of 2011. On the 220 workstations in its main office, it will gradually replace the underlying operating system to Ubuntu Linux, says Sebastien Bollingh, the party’s ICT manager.

  • Google

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KDE SC 4.5 Falls Short

        It’s great that the new focus has been on solidifying the desktop, but with new regressions and no major must-have features to make this release worthwhile, I simply can’t recommend it in its current state. For now, I recommend sticking with KDE 4.4 for the time being and blocking this release if your distribution allows it. I’m confident though that future point releases will solidify KDE 4.5, and when that happens I may consider taking another look.

      • Reviewed: KDE 4.5

        Trepidation. That about sums up the feeling of upgrading to a new version of KDE. You want to like it, but are afraid that whatever has been fixed will be counterbalanced by something rather sucky. This version of KDE has seen 16,022 bugs fixed and 1,723 new feature requests added, so the balance is in favour of not-sucky. Or is it?

        For the most part, the improvements in this version of KDE aren’t the things that you see, but the things that you don’t see any longer. Chief among the long list of user grievances in 4.4 was the behaviour of system notifications – no longer. Now the notifications look better and don’t clog up the screen for 10 minutes every time you try to copy a file somewhere it can’t fit.


        Our Verdict: Now with less suck, the 4.x series moves from being merely usable to almost desirable. 8/10

      • KDE and the Masters of the Universe – 2010-08-31

        This week on KDEMU, Paul sends a shout-out, Gamaral sends a shout-out and Jeff sends a shout-out right after sharing what Amarok, KDE Sysadmin and CampKDE are all about.

    • GNOME Desktop

  • Distributions

    • PCLinuxOS/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • A Good Reason to Use PCLinuxOS 2010

        CFS trades higher kernel overhead for maximizing interactive performance. On mobile devices, the higher overhead means running the processor at higher speeds, which builds more heat. Heat is the enemy of every mobile device.

        For a bit of background, Con Koliva developed the Rotating Staircase Deadline scheduler, which inspired Ingo Molnar to develop CFS. Seeing the problems with CFS, Con Koliva designed BFS (Brain Fucked Scheduler), an expression of how he felt about writing yet another scheduler. Con Koliva designed BFS for those devices with less than 16 cores, which, to the best of my knowledge, covers all mobile devices, and older non-mobile desktops.

        Although it first appeared in September of 2009, there was not an immediate rush to switch from CFS to BFS. Android has a development branch that includes BFS. It was not included in the Froyo (Android 2.2) release, as a customer survey did not show any differences. At this time, only Zenwalk 6.4 and PCLinuxOS 2010 use BFS as the default scheduler. As it matures, you may see BFS appear in other mobile projects, such as MeeGo.

      • PCLinuxOS
    • Gentoo Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • You can help the defenders.

        Here’s a brief snippet of what I wrote to the advisory-board list this morning:

        Red Hat Legal provides numerous services as counsel to the Fedora community, including defending Fedora trademarks against possible encroachment. Occasionally, people who have no connection to our community attempt to use the Fedora trademark to signify business efforts that have no connection to the Fedora Project, our distribution, or the Fedora community. Red Hat Legal is currently working on just such a defense. They’ve asked me to pass on a request for assistance in gathering physical evidence of our use of the Fedora logo worldwide prior to January 30, 2007.

      • Today: Open Your World webcast with Stefan Lindegaard on the Open Innovation Revolution
      • Fedora

    • Debian Family

      • A day of failure with Debian

        The Broadcom driver has been annoying me since I got the ProBook. The only distro on which I managed to manually install it is Fedora. On Ubuntu, I now connect to the Internet using my ZTE MF110 modem and use Hardware Drivers (jockey?) to automatically install it. On a side note, I couldn’t do that with Kubuntu, because KNetworkManager is too buggy to let me connect to networks that do not support 2G data (which Digi Mobil Romania is).

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 208

          Hot on the heels of the announcement of the Natty Narwhal, I am tickled pink to announce the details of the next Ubuntu Developer Summit taking place in Orlando, USA from 25th – 29th October 2010. We also have a brand new Ubuntu Developer Summit website which provides all the details about how to get there and why UDS is interesting if you are in our community, if you are an upstream, and if you are a vendor.

        • Default Wallpaper for Ubuntu 10.10 – Looks Like the Inside of a Barf Bag

          I made no secret of my dislike for the “Aubergine” wallpaper in Ubuntu 10.04. If you had asked me when that was released if I thought Ubuntu/Canoncial could come up with something worse, I would have said no.

          Unfortunately, I would have been wrong. Ubuntu has revealed the default wallpaper for their 10.10 release. I swear to you, it looks like the inside of a barf bag. Every time I look at it, I get a very strong urge to contribute more to that bag… Take a look for yourself. Read the comments. Ugh. Bletch.

        • Flavours and Variants

          • Reviewed: Linux Mint 9 KDE

            Despite this, Mint is up there with Kubuntu as a coherent KDE desktop. If you’ve used Gnome Mint, but fancy lots of apps with a capitalised K in the name, this is the logical choice.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Palm Reveals webOS 2.0 SDK Beta

        Palm released new information on webOS 2.0, the Linux-based mobile OS that powers the Palm Pre and Pixi.

        The announcement highlighted 7 core features new to webOS 2.0. It’s confirmed that webOS 2.0 will feature multi-tasking in the form of Stacks. Stacks groups related applications into fanned stacks similar to a deck of cards, reducing clutter. webOS 2.0 automatically groups similar applications together, but it’s possible to manually group applications as well.

      • WebOS 2.0 Pushed to Developers
    • Tablets

      • Hands-On With Stream TV’s Surprising, Open Source-Friendly Tablet

        If anyone unseats the iPad, the victor might be the one that doesn’t try to beat Apple at its own game. We checked out Stream TV’s eLocity Android tablet first-hand, and this plucky contender may put up a serious fight.

        To say that the eLocity A7 isn’t going directly head to head with the iPad isn’t to say that it’s not out to impress. The solidly built 7-inch tablet is powered by NVIDIA’s beefy, dual core Tegra 2 processor, will run Froyo out of the box and is capable of outputting a plethora of formats at 1080p via an included HDMI cable.

Free Software/Open Source

  • XBMC 10.0 Beta 1 features new Add-ons system

    XBMC 10.0 Beta 1 is available to download from one of the project’s mirrors. XBMC source code is hosted on SourceForge and is licensed under the GNU General Public License (GPL). The most recent stable release is version 9.11 from the end of December, 2009.

  • Time for IBM to become an open source hero

    I’m not asking IBM to do something against its interests here. Quite the contrary. It is very much in IBM’s own interest that it step up and lead the open source movement. That’s something IBM representatives have been telling their customers and business partners for some time, that you give in order to get.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox’s New “JaegerMonkey” JavaScript Engine is Revving Up, About 20% Faster Already

        Firefox 4.0 is probably going to be one among the most important release Mozilla team has ever made. Competition is breathing down its neck like never before. Even IE, in its latest avatar(read IE9) is fast becoming a better piece of software. Mozilla’s answer to all this lies in upcoming Firefox 4.0. Already a lot of improvements have been made. But the biggest change is going to be the the new JavaScript engine called “JaegerMonkey”.

  • Databases

    • Famous Online Game and Online Word Processor use CUBRID Database

      Today is a Big day at Naver.com, Korea’s No.1 Search Portal with 34 million subscribers and 17 million daily unique visotors. Today Naver launches its new Online Word Processor Service backed up by CUBRID Database Server in an Open Beta state. The Word Processor service runs on CUBRID 2008 R2.2 with High-Availability feature ON. There is an approximate estimate that CUBRID Database will be process several million batch requests every day.

    • EnterpriseDB: Open Source Database Attracts More Funding

      EnterpriseDB, which provides enterprise-level open source PostgreSQL database services, has announced its completed a round of funding, adding KT (formerly Korea Telecom) and TransLink Capital to its list of investors. Here’s the story.

      While the company didn’t disclose the financial terms of the investments, EnterpriseDB’s press release says that TransLink Capital co-founder Jay Eum has joined their Board of Directors. At TransLink, Eum is also responsible for managing investments in companies like Carbonite and XSigo, so he has experience in the IT space.

  • CMS

    • Drupal Releases New Code of Conduct

      Drupal released its new Code of Conduct on Monday with the intention of preserving the community and environment that has sprung around the open source content management system.

      “The new Drupal Code of Conduct states our shared ideals with respect to conduct. Think of this as coding standards for people,” Moshe Weitzman said in the announcement on Drupal’s website.


    • Interview with Bradley Kuhn of the GNOME Advisory Board

      At that time, Richard Stallman asked me to remain on the GNOME advisory board as a volunteer, primarily to provide ongoing continuity to FSF’s representation on the Advisory Board. From 2005-2010, that position was in fact the only official duty that I carried out for FSF. But, as a side point, non-profits are very different from for-profits in this regard; it’s quite common for important roles to be held by volunteers. Since non-profits operate in the public good, many experienced professionals are willing to give their time without compensation.

  • Openness/Sharing


  • Holy Smokes! At 5.2 GHz IBM Chip is Super Fast

    IBM today announced that it has developed a computer chip that has a record-breaking clock speed of 5.2 GHz. The chip — dubbed z196 processor — is going to be used in a new IBM mainframe system, the zEnterprise 196. IBM developed the chip for big honking computers whose primary job is to crunch copious amounts of data, especially for banks and retailers who are seeing a big shift in their business with the rise of mobile.

  • Science

    • Announcing PLoS Blogs

      Today we are pleased to announce the launch of PLoS Blogs a new network for discussing science in public; covering topics in research, culture, and publishing.

      PLoS Blogs is different from other blogging networks, because it includes an equal mix of science journalists and scientists. We’re excited to be welcoming our new bloggers, including Pulitzer Prize winner Deborah Blum to the network.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • Will we ever recover from the financial crisis?

      Well, define recovery. If recovery is getting back to the low unemployment levels that preceded the crisis, then no, we might not ever recover. If recovery is just getting back to some more normal-looking growth and job numbers, it’s still going to take a very long time.

    • Obama says reviving economy the most urgent task

      President Barack Obama says his central responsibility as president is to restore the nation’s fragile economy and to help put the millions of people who lost jobs back to work.

    • 10 bailed-out banks spent $16.3M lobbying in 1H

      The 10 banks that received the most bailout aid during the financial crisis spent over $16 million on lobbying efforts in the first half of 2010, as the debate over financial regulatory reform reached its height.

    • Fed officials discussed further stimulus steps

      Federal Reserve officials signaled at their August meeting that they would consider going beyond a modest program to purchase government debt if necessary to boost the economy.

    • SEC says it lacked authority to charge Moody’s

      The Securities and Exchange Commission has declined to seek fraud charges against Moody’s Investors Services over its ratings of risky investments that led to the financial crisis.

      But the SEC said it decided against seeking civil charges only because it determined it lacked authority to charge a foreign affiliate of Moody’s.

    • Tradition ends: No Michigan state fair this year

      Rabbit breeder Rob Usakowski typically spends the week before Labor Day helping his daughters show their Jersey Woolies and Holland Lops at the Michigan State Fair.

      This year, he and his family are home after Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm canceled the fair, saying debt-ridden Michigan could no longer afford to subsidize it. Granholm’s decision makes Michigan the only Midwestern state and one of few nationwide without a state fair.

    • Hands off Social Security

      The White House deficit commission is reportedly considering deep benefit cuts for Social Security, including a steep rise in the retirement age. We cannot let that happen.

      The deficit and our $13 trillion national debt are serious problems that must be addressed. But we can — and must — address them without punishing America’s workers, senior citizens, the disabled, widows and orphans.

    • Source: JPMorgan Chase halting proprietary trading

      JPMorgan Chase & Co. is shutting down its proprietary trading desks and eliminating around 80 jobs to comply with new restrictions on investment banks, a source familiar with the situation said on Tuesday.

      The source spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because JPMorgan Chase isn’t formally announcing the move.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Ecommerce directive: EU Commission sneaks out filtering review

      The review of the E-commerce Directive asks whether network filtering can be effective and whether there are liability issues for “web 2.0 and cloud computing”. Given that it is under the remit of the French Commissioner, Michel Barnier, how are we to read this strange approach to a consultation which specifically does NOT want to hear the citizen perspective?

      In the middle of the summer holidays, when few were around to notice it, the European Commision has sneaked out a highly controversial review of the Ecommerce directive. The review is consulting on the use of Internet filtering and monitoring and search engine linking. It appears to have been influenced by the pharmaceutical, luxury goods and copyright industries. And in a move that is sure to inflame the user community, the Commission has specifically ruled out responses from citizens’ groups and NGOs.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Does Steven Levitan Also Want A Cut Every Time You Buy A TV?

      We recently wrote about how TV producer Steven Levitan was publicly complaining that content creators deserve a cut of any IPO proceeds that Hulu gets, if it does go public. We pointed out what a ridiculous sense of entitlement was involved in such a sentiment, but rather than back down, Levitan is apparently only just beginning. The Hollywood Reporter interviewed him about his views on this, and he simply kept on repeating the same ridiculous concept that as a content producer he somehow deserves the money that Hulu makes. He also complains that TV companies should either keep shows offline under the false belief that TV shows are less likely to be pirated (no, stop laughing, he’s serious) and that if they must go online, they should include all of the commercials seen on TV. Because, apparently, recognizing that you’re dealing with people watching shows under very different circumstances and in very different ways apparently has not occurred to Levitan.

    • Copyrights

      • If Fashion Copyright Harms So Many, Why Is Congress Pushing For It?

        It’s even worse than that, actually. In many cases, there are plenty of us willing to speak up about the harm caused by greater protectionism, and the vast amounts of actual evidence and research showing how these policies are inherently going to do more harm than good — but very few people in Congress listen. Why? Because the industry has done a rather impressive targeted PR job of branding anyone who actually presents evidence and facts about the harm done by copyright law as simply supporting “piracy,” which then gets lumped in with all sorts of other awful things. It’s really a shame.

      • Introducing Copyright
      • Edwyn Collins stopped from sharing his music online

        he Scottish star’s manager has criticised MySpace and Warner Music for not allowing the singer to stream A Girl Like You, claiming he didn’t own the copyright

      • ACTA

        • It´s a bird, it´s a plane… no it’s “ACTA light”.

          Today in the European Parliament in Brussels Luc Devigne from DG Trade briefed the International Trade Commission in a closed door meeting on the latest round of the ACTA negotiations. He gave the impression that thanks to the EU many things were being “scaled back” to calm the worries of citizens and certain industries such as Internet Service providers or generic medicine producers.

          He insisted that lots of progress was made in DC on most topics and that now the text was “less complicated”. At the same time he stated that there was a still a “long way to go” to bridge the gap between the US and the EU on issues of scope of rights covered in border measures (EU broader, US narrower), geographical indications, industrial design and border measures concerning not only import but affecting goods being exported and in transit. The US only wants trademarks, and copyright in border measures that will be limited to imports (as established in TRIPS), while the EU wants this extended At the same time he repeated that all patents were out of border measures and criminal sanctions and that nothing in ACTA would affect “access to medicine.”

Clip of the Day

Object Oriented Programming

Credit: TinyOgg

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