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Links 7/9/2011: Linux World Domination, China Picks IBM’s GNU/Linux Mainframe

Posted in News Roundup at 4:12 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • Project of the Month September 2011 – GCompris
  • New on the site: Open source resources

    We’re happy to announce a new open source resources section. To kick things off, we’ve added pages that highlight open source conferences and events, organizations, and projects and applications. It’s not much, but it’s a start. We have lots of ideas, and want to make this more robust and improve functionality. But for now, let’s see if this idea catches on.

  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS

    • A Way off the Ranch

      In February 2011, Eben Moglen gave a landmark speech to the Internet Society titled “Freedom in the Cloud”, in which he unpacked the problem. In the beginning, he said, the Internet was designed as “a network of peers without any intrinsic need for hierarchical or structural control, and assuming that every switch in the Net is an independent, free-standing entity whose volition is equivalent to the volition of the human beings who want to control it”.

  • Databases

    • NoSQL Benchmarking

      NoSQL is the talk of the town. And we have already covered what it is for in one of our previous blogs. Today I would like to share the NoSQL benchmark test results we have recently conducted. It will help you to understand if the soon to develop system is compatible to NoSQL, and which NoSQL product to select.

      In this article we will reveal the characteristics of Cassandra, HBase and MongoDB identified through multiple workloads.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Board Elections: Nominations Open
    • Developing LibreOffice

      Not being stopped by that knowledge, LibreOffice developers take a strong bite deep in the code base for improvements now and even better future LibreOffice development. I’m not only impressed, but also get more and more confident in the future of this project.

  • CMS

    • Octopress: Create Static Sites with a Full-Featured Framework

      Static sites have better performance than dynamic sites, but you lose a lot of features by giving up a content management system (CMS), right? Maybe not, if you have a framework like Octopress.

      Last week I looked at static sites and cloud services, but even Todd Hoff’s excellent coverage put me off a bit. Then I ran into the Octopress 2.0 announcement.


    • FSF’s Star Turn in the Android FUDathon, Part 2

      The people and companies … who disregard the Internet “don’t be a dick” rule … need more incentive to comply. However, even they don’t lose the right to use the code permanently unless they decide to “be a dick” permanently. In those cases, it doesn’t matter how many copies of the code they get — each new license for each new copy would be terminated as soon as they attempted distribution outside the terms of the license.

  • Public Services/Government

    • Federal Court may share its DMS as open source, parliament says

      The Swiss Parliament’s control committee for the Federal Court is allowing the publication as open source software of Open Justitia, a document management system developed in-house by the court. The software will be made available under the GPLv3 licence soon.

    • NSA Extends Label-based Security to Big Data Stores

      “There is a need for a flexible, high performance distributed key/value store that provides expressive, fine-grained access labels,” the developers stated on the proposal page submitted to Apache. “We have made much progress in developing this project over the past [three] years and believe both the project and the interested communities would benefit from this work being openly available and having open development.”

    • Open government policy developments in Australasia

      Last week in New Zealand, the Ministers of Finance and Internal Affairs adopted a statement detailing a new Declaration on Open and Transparent Government. The Declaration has been approved by Cabinet, and directs all Public Service departments, the New Zealand Police, the New Zealand Defence Force, the Parliamentary Counsel Office, and the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service; encourages other State Services agencies; and invites State Sector agencies to commit to releasing high value public data actively for re-use, in accordance with the Declaration and Principles, and in accordance with the NZGOAL Review and Release process. More information on this statement can be found at the CC Aotearoa New Zealand blog.

    • Publicly Releasing Open Source Software Developed for the U.S. Government by Dr. David A. Wheeler

      This article summarizes when the U.S. federal government or its contractors may publicly release, as open source software (OSS), software developed with government funds. This section is intended for non-lawyers, to help them understand the basic rules they must follow.

      This article was previously published in the Journal of Software Technology (aka Software Tech News), Vol.14, No.1, February 2011. It is part of “Open Technology Development (OTD): Lessons Learned and Best Practices for Military Software”, and thus is released under the Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 (CC-BY-SA) License. A one-page summary of this paper is available from MIL-OSS, and the MIL-OSS 2011 conference had a presentation on releasing OSS.

  • Programming

  • Standards/Consortia

    • WS-Calendar 1.0 adopted by OASIS Committee
    • The Next Internet: What’s Holding Us Back?

      Tim Berners-Lee, to his credit, did not invent the Internet. He did have one good idea. He was not the first person or even the twelfth with the same idea, but he did make it work. Yet most of the underlying work – the bringing together of dozens of communications systems with slightly or wildly varying protocols – was done before him. He just plugged it in, and for that, he gets most of the credit.


  • Security

  • Cablegate

    • Wikileaks Provides Proof that UK is Eradicating Turks and Caicos Islanders Since Early 2000s
    • Talks over Egypt-Israel gas deal took 10 years, says Wikileaks

      Negotiations over the natural gas deal between Egypt and Israel dragged out over 10 years because of “political concerns in Egypt,” a recently revealed Wikileaks cable said.

      A partial extract from cable number 05CAIRO4972 of a confidential document prepared by the US embassy in Cairo one day before the deal was signed said the US described the deal as “the most lucrative ever.”

      On July 1, 2005, then Egyptian Petroleum Minister Sameh Fahmy and Israeli Minister of National Infrastructure Benjamin Ben-Eliezer signed the agreement to supply 1.7 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually to the Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) starting October 2006.

    • Addressing confusion about PFC Bradley Manning’s case

      In online discussions attributed to PFC Bradley Manning, he says that he hopes his actions will spur “discussion, debates, and reforms” and that he “want[s] people to know the truth, no matter who they are, because without information you cannot make informed decisions as a public.” This is the classic definition of a whistle-blower (a person who tells the public about alleged dishonest or illegal activities/misconduct occurring in a government department).

      Unfortunately, the government is charging PFC Bradley Manning with “knowingly [giving] intelligence to the enemy, through indirect means,” under Article 104 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice — an allegation of treason and a capital offense. By this rational, scores of service-person-posted blogs, photos, and videos, would now be punishable by death—simply because they are accessible on the Internet. The charge against Bradley Manning appears to be about sending a message to other would-be whistle-blowers.

    • 2011-09-06 WikiLeaks Notes: Latest News on #Cablegate Releases & #WikiLeaks
  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Wikileaks has shown us a world we need to know

      Wik­ileaks has its share of crit­ics – the or­gan­i­sa­tion is too cen­tred around Ju­lian As­sange and a per­son­al­ity-type cult ex­ists – but surely the vast bulk of in­for­ma­tion the group has re­leased since 2006 makes it a major force for good (not least be­cause it’s forced gov­ern­ments and many jour­nal­ists on the de­fen­sive about their in­sider tac­tics)…

    • Dolphins call each other by name

      Dave the dolphin whistles, and his friend Alan whistles back. We can’t yet decipher their calls, but some of the time Dave may be calling: “Alan! Alan! Alan! Alan!”

      Stephanie King of the University of St Andrews, UK, and colleagues monitored 179 pairs of wild bottlenose dolphins off the Florida coast between 1988 and 2004. Of these, 10 were seen copying each other’s signature whistles, which the dolphins make to identify themselves to each other.

    • Girl’s sex spy saga shocks staid Swiss

      Even by Romanian standards, the plot beggars belief. A hot-blooded young seductress masquerading as a journalist is order- ed by her masters in the Romanian Intelligence Service to lure the Swiss ambassador into bed.

      Once there, her task is to find out anything and everything she can about “Ceausescu’s Gold” – the millions of dollars Romania’s late dictator is believed to have stashed away in Swiss bank accounts just before his fall.

      Afternoons of passion in the Bucharest penthouse she would persuade him to buy her were to be followed by gentle probing as to the real intentions of ex-King Michael, the former Romanian monarch now exiled in the ambassador’s Swiss homeland.

      And far from keeping the affair discreet, the agent is to make sure that she and her consort – a married man with two children – are frequently seen together wining and dining in public and at diplomatic functions. Just for good measure, the exercise will be called “Operation William Tell”.

  • Finance

    • NY Approves Goldman Sachs’ Sale of Litton with Stipulations

      The New York Department of Financial Services and Banking Department is including several stipulations with its approval of Goldman Sachs’ sale of its Litton Loan Servicing, LP, to special servicer Ocwen Financial Corp.

    • All Work and No Pay: The Great Speedup

      ON A BRIGHT SPRING DAY in a wisteria-bedecked courtyard full of earnest, if half-drunk, conference attendees, we were commiserating with a fellow journalist about all the jobs we knew of that were going unfilled, being absorbed or handled “on the side.” It was tough for all concerned, but necessary—you know, doing more with less.

  • Copyrights

    • Universities flee Access Copyright

      In the wake of a proposed fee increase, universities across Canada have opted to leave contracts with once-popular copyright licenser Access Copyright.
      Many schools, including York University, the University of British Columbia and almost every school in the prairie region have abandoned their contracts with Access Copyright in favour of steering the waters of copyright legislation on their own.

    • MPAA Unsurprisingly Behind Australia iiNet Case

      Hid Behind Scenes to Avoid Impression of Being a Bully

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