06.18.11

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Links 18/6/2011: Linux 3.1 Prospects, OLPC Infographic

Posted in News Roundup at 6:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Airtime: open source software for radio stations

    The Sourcefabric developers have released an update to their open source Airtime radio software that adds a number of improvements which make it easier to install and upgrade to new versions. Airtime is a server application which allows users, from any modern web browser, to upload audio, create playlists with drag and drop, incorporate track transitions, build complete shows and then schedule them for transmission.

    [...]

    The developers recommend using Ubuntu 10.04 LTS on a computer with at least 512 MB RAM and a 1 GHz processor.

  • Second “Win a Boxee Box” contest kicks off!

    BoxeeBoxTips.com is pleased to announce our second “Win a Boxee Box” contest. The contest begins immediately and runs through midnight (PDT) on July 31, 2011.

  • Tomahawk releases its sleek new avatar

    Hope this name is not too unfamiliar! Just for those hearing this for the first time, Tomahawk is a cross platform open source media player and it can play music regardless of where the music content is stored. It is gaining popularity as a media player among the Ubuntu community too. Tomahawk recently announced the release of a new version –the Tomahawk Media Player 0.1.

  • Open Source Could Change the Future of E-Discovery

    Software developers on the outskirts of the e-discovery field are working on several open-source projects to make the electronic search-and-analysis process into a cost-free, standards-based proposition.

    Independent projects are underway from a contract programmer in Houston, a team of information management experts throughout Europe and Australia, and a search engine consulting firm in Virginia. Their mutual goal: to help companies get respectable e-discovery software and make the technology feasible for every size of lawsuit and budget.

    [...]

    Starting points for that kind of software stack are Apache-licensed components such as the Lucene indexing and searching program interface, Mahout machine-learning tool, Nutch data crawler, Solr enterprise search package and Tika document filtering utility, he explained.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 5 RC Updates Version Number and Little Else

        Over the past seven years, we’ve come to expect Firefox Web browser releases to bring major new interface changes, improved performance, and browsing tools. But since Mozilla decided to follow Google’s frequent release strategy, we’ll have to temper our expectations for new Firefox releases. Version 5 of Mozilla’s volunteer-crafted browser software brings a lot of fixes, but pretty much zilch when it comes to interface advancements or new user tools.

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • LibreOffice 3.4 released: Is it a worthy replacement for premium Office Suites?

      Microsoft seems to have a tough ride ahead, they seem to have lost the patent case for its Office suite. Now open source tools from Open Office.Org and LibreOffice Suites are competing aggressively with MS Office for market share. The main reason is the Open Source tag associated with the first two choices. It is inexpensive and enjoys backing from a large community of developers. Today let us take a look at the latest release from the LibreOffice Suite- the LibreOffice 3.4.

    • LibreOffice gets serious with new release and Advisory Board

      This week we saw the release of a stable version of LibreOffice with the 3.3.3 release, which in my mind is a big deal. Sure they just put out LibreOffice 3.4 recently, but putting out new releases (in a way) is almost easier than doing the nitty, gritty of maintaining ‘older’ releases.

      Keeping two (or more) software tracks on track is no easy task for any open source project, but it seems to be one that the Document Foundation is pulling off with flying colors.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Manual Override
    • Evergreen Joins the Software Freedom Conservancy

      The Software Freedom Conservancy (SFC) has added another organization — the Evergreen project joins the SFC as the 27th member project. Since we’re halfway through 2011, I took the opportunity to check in with Conservancy executive director Bradley Kuhn to see how things are going with the organization.

  • Licensing

  • Programming

    • EGit and JGit 1.0 Released

      In the end, we are happy to bring Git tooling to the Eclipse community and the Indigo release. I hope by the time this next year, the eclipse.org community has fully migrated to Git. It should be a hard requirement to join the Juno simultaneous release in my opinion.

Leftovers

  • Science

    • How Republicans Talk About Climate When No One’s Listening

      Sarah Palin may now dismiss global warming as a “bunch of snake oil science,” but just a few years ago, back when she was governor of the state melting into the sea, she was inclined to care about the subject. It’s well-known that she established a task force to address climate change in the state, but later flip-flopped on the issue. Yet as one exchange in the trove of emails released by the state of Alaska last week shows, Palin at one point actually took climate science quite seriously.

      In an email exchange from July 2007, Palin discussed global warming with her brother, Chuck Heath Jr., who was taking part in a climate change study program for science teachers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and the state’s environment commissioner. Heath wrote:

      Sarah, I’m just about done with my 80 hour course on global climate change. Most of it has been focused on coastal erosion which is probably a bigger deal than you’re aware of … I have met some of the top scientists in the world on the subject and if you’d like, I can organize another advisory task force (which would include scientists, economists, citizens who live in these areas) who can give recommendations to the state. The problem is accelerating quickly so it would be good to get a handle on it now.

  • Security

  • Cablegate

    • Exposure Of Information v. Exposure To Information

      The government’s recent declassification of the Vietnam-era Pentagon Papers corrects a 40-year mistake. But the motive may have had more to do with defending a current wrong than righting an old one.

      Several months ago, the White House directed federal agencies to warn employees and contractors that viewing classified documents made public via WikiLeaks violated “applicable laws and…policies.”

      After it was pointed out that this notice could be equally applied to the Pentagon Papers – long available on public bookshelves and a staple of modern history courses despite their continued “secret” status – the government announced that they would be declassified.

      (Most Americans probably didn’t even realize the Pentagon Papers still were officially secret. Until that announcement, people familiar with the case expressed surprise to me that this was so.)

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Fukushima: It’s much worse than you think

      “Fukushima is the biggest industrial catastrophe in the history of mankind,” Arnold Gundersen, a former nuclear industry senior vice president, told Al Jazeera.

      Japan’s 9.0 earthquake on March 11 caused a massive tsunami that crippled the cooling systems at the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s (TEPCO) nuclear plant in Fukushima, Japan. It also led to hydrogen explosions and reactor meltdowns that forced evacuations of those living within a 20km radius of the plant.

      Gundersen, a licensed reactor operator with 39 years of nuclear power engineering experience, managing and coordinating projects at 70 nuclear power plants around the US, says the Fukushima nuclear plant likely has more exposed reactor cores than commonly believed.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Usage based billing is a joke and a major scam.

      It always amazes me how large corporations can never get enough money and constantly surpass the line between good business sense to complete corporate greed. For over a decade, Internet Service Providers have been providing unlimited Internet usage at a relatively reasonable price. Today, these same corporations no longer provide unlimited Internet usage and have imposed draconian data caps. They have moved from unlimited data transfer to a mere 80 gigabyte limit for $65 per month and an additional 1 gigabyte will cost you $1.50, even though it only costs $0.03 for the ISP to transfer it over their networks.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Non paper distributed at SCCR 22 at 1pm on Friday, on disabilities

      In a major breakthrough on the WIPO negotiations on copyright exceptions for persons with disabilities, at around 1pm today, a non-paper “resulting from informal discussions among Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, the European Union and its Member States, Mexico, Paraguay and the United States of America” was distributed at the WIPO SCCR 22.

    • Copyrights

      • Access Copyright Backlash Grows: Canadian Poets Pass Resolution Supporting TWUC Motion

        The League of Canadian Poets has lined up in support of the recent Writers’ Union of Canada resolution recognizing the lack of control over how licensing revenue is managed and the inability of Access Copyright to represent creator interests. As a result, the TWUC plans to investigate operational separation of creators’ and publishers’ interests in collective licensing. The LCP passed a resolution expressing support for the TWUC motion with plans to send a representative to the joint signatory committee investigating creator copyright.

      • Fair Dealing in the Post-Secondary Environment
      • Access Copyright’s Desperation: From Fair Dealing Allows Everything to It’s Too Risky to Rely Upon

        The battle over competing visions of educational copyright licensing in Canada is coming to a conclusion. One on side, there is Access Copyright, which argues that a comprehensive collective licence is an essential part of an institutional copyright policy. On the other, are the Canadian education institutions, who believe that a more flexible, cost-effective alternative lies in relying on the combination of purchasing works, site licences, open access, fair dealing, and transactional licensing. Having first faced a proposal for a massive increase in Access Copyright licensing fees and later weeks of costly, unnecessary Copyright Board interrogatories, the educational institutions are clearly ready to break away from the Access Copyright comprehensive licence.

      • ACTA

        • Europe Considers Using CETA To Create “Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement Plus”

          As Canada and the European Union continue their negotiations on a trade deal, a source has provided a copy of the EU proposal for the criminal intellectual property provisions. The IP criminal provisions was the one aspect left out of early drafts (the CETA leak from last year is available here). The initial EU proposal uses the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement’s criminal provisions as the model. This includes ACTA Article 23 on Criminal Offences (criminal provisions for wilful trademark counterfeiting or copyright piracy on a commercial scale), ACTA Article 24 on Penalties (including imprisonment), ACTA Article 25 on Seizure, Forfeiture, and Destruction, and ACTA Article 26 on Ex Officio Criminal Enforcement. Several of these provisions would require domestic legislative change in Canada that were not found in Bill C-32 (suggesting that an IP enforcement bill will be introduced sometime in the near future).

        • Mexican Senator Drafts Resolution Asking Government To Reject ACTA

          We’re now a few weeks into “open season” on the final final version of ACTA, so expect to see random stories planted by certain folks about how “important” it is to sign the document and “live up to our international obligations.”

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