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Links 12/10/2011: Nokia’s New Linux Team, NGINX Gets Dosh

Posted in News Roundup at 8:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Free Software/Open Source

  • NGINX Goes Open Core
  • Apache and IIS’ Web server rival NGINX is growing fast

    It used to be easy for Web server administrators. If you ran a Windows shop, you used Internet Information Server (IIS), if you didn’t, you used Apache. Now, though, you have more Web server choices and one of the leading alternatives, the open-source NGINX Web server, is gaining fast.

    According to Netcraft, the leading Web server analytics company, NGINX, with its over 40-million Web domains and 8.5% of all Web domains, is catching up with the big two. Indeed Netcraft analysts believe that “If current trends continue NGINX will soon overtake Microsoft to have the second largest number of active sites.”

  • Open Source Web Server NGINX Receives $3 Million Investment
  • Nginx open source web server gets Dell backing
  • Open Source Web Server Leader NGINX Closes U.S. $3 Million Series A Funding Round.
  • NGINX Go Commercial, a Promising Open Source Business Case
  • FIIB Delhi faculty’s study on ERP reported in reputed journal

    The paper analyzes business models of open source ERP, emphasizing the importance of software licensing and partner networks.

  • Open source hypervisors on VMware shops’ radars

    Hypervisors based on open source code will get new consideration from users in the next 12 months, according to the results of SearchServerVirtualization.com’s 2011 Virtualization Decisions survey.

  • Open Source. What is it Good For?

    I’ve written about open source hardware (OSHW) a few times before. Like this and this. I’ve understood open source software for quite some time and over the last few years have been starting to get what open source hardware is all about. It is different than open source software.

    With software, your tangible product is essentially intangible. Your acquisition and distribution of an open source project can be virtually free. Not so with hardware. Someone has to physically build something, which costs time and money in parts and labor. Really though, all that means is the proliferation of an open source hardware product just takes a little longer. If you look at it as the design being open source more than the actual product, then it gets to be more and more similar to software.

  • French Model Specialist Modeliosoft Goes Open Source
  • Top five drawbacks of open source (Ed: SD Times, the usual)

    While open source has seen tremendous uptake in companies large and small, there are still plenty of problems you can encounter when building on top of an open stack of software. Here are the top five.

  • Churches and Technology. Open Source and the Church

    Open source software is computer software that has been produced and is licensed in such a way that the software is allowed to be downloaded and accessed by anybody, free of charge.

    Open source in many cases is built by people that care about software as something they love to produce and something that they want to build. The developers care about how things are done, and the quality of the end result rather than the money that they can get from selling the software itself.

  • Antepedia is the largest Knowledge Base of Open Source components
  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS

    • Forget iCloud, Create Your ownCloud

      ownCloud team has announced the release of version 2 of ownCloud, the free and open source cloud computing. The latest version comes after a huge gap of one and a half year. But, this release is promising.

    • ownCloud 2 released

      ownCloud 2 has just been released. ownCloud is a web-based storage application similar to Google Docs, Dropbox or Ubuntu One with a big difference—your data is under your control. With version 2, the ownCloud team has improved the basic service and added valuable features:

      * Access your files on the web or integrate ownCloud with desktop file managers.
      * Share files securely.
      * Access music and personal information directly or connect through applications.
      * Synchronize with other web applications that use the remoteStorage protocol.
      * More user support, demos and community interaction.

    • Linux Labs to Launch New SaaS Platform in 1Q 2012

      Currently, the company is in alpha and testing with a limited number of clients. Linux has been deploying FDS cluster computer solutions for clients such as ARUP since a decade. As per the new strategy, Linux will provide an FDS SaaS solution that would provide efficiencies and cost savings for future clients, from industries such as Engineering, Educational institutions, Gas, Chemical and Government agencies like FEMA.

    • The OpenStack juggernaut

      The OpenStack collaborative industry effort to build an open source cloud platform is to be applauded for the remarkable gains it has achieved in a short amount of time. Founded by Rackspace Hosting and NASA in July last year, the organization is now backed by 120 companies, including the likes of HP, Dell, Intel and Cisco, and has already issued four major code releases, the last of which, Diablo, just came out last month and has already been downloaded 50,000 times.

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • More proof of Oracle’s disinterest in open source

      But as kernel developer Dave Jones notes, “The number of bug reports we get from people with VirtualBox loaded are truly astonishing. It’s GPL, but sadly that doesn’t mean it’s good. Nearly all of these bugs look like random corruption. (corrupt linked lists, corrupt page tables, and just plain ‘weird’ crashes).”

      Hence Jones has added a patch to list the driver as tainted. Doing so, means that “automatic bug filing tools can opt out of automatically filing kernel bugs, and inform the user to file bugs somewhere more appropriate.”

      There are many third-party drivers which are present on GNU/Linux systems. They are maintained by outsiders and if the code meets the high standards of the kernel then they often get merged with the mainline kernel. Oracle is the owner of VirtualBox and given that it is a widely used platform should, by rights, be maintaining the driver.

    • Hard-up OpenOffice whips out begging-cap website

      Hamburg-based open-source project OpenOffice will embark upon a major fundraising campaign this week to defend itself against a looming shutdown.

    • Oracle Previews Upcoming Solaris 11 and Oracle Linux Changes

      Almost lost within the fanfare of last week’s Oracle OpenWorld were several sneak peeks at where the company is heading with its Solaris and Oracle Linux operating systems (OS) in the near future. For the upcoming release of Solaris 11, the company announced features to make it more user friendly, more virtualized and more scalable. On the Linux side, Oracle revealed it is releasing a second version of its Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel for Linux. The big news here is that it can be patched without any downtime.

  • Education

    • Open source science

      In 2009, mathematician Timothy Gowers posed this question to the blogosphere: “Is massively collaborative mathematics possible?” He described an unsolved math problem and asked for help figuring it out. Over the next few hours and days, commenters began to pick at the problem together. They brought up incomplete ideas, which were expanded and incorporated into other peoples’ ideas, until Gowers posted 37 days later that the problem had (probably) been solved.

  • Funding

    • Spree Raises $1.5 Million From True Ventures, Aol For Open Source eCommerce Platform

      Spree Commerce, the open source, Ruby on Rails-based eCommerce solution, announced today that it has raised $1.5 million in seed funding led by True Ventures. Also participating in the round were Aol Ventures, and angels like Sean Glass. Spree has also brought on some notable advisors, including Dries Buytaert (Creator of Drupal), Luke Kanies (Creator of Puppet), Tom Preston-Werner (Co-founder of Github), and James Lindenbaum (Co-founder of Heroku).

    • Open Source Ecommerce Solution Raises $1.5M in Seed Funding

      Popular open source ecommerce solution, Spree, announced yesterday it has officially become incorporated as Spree Commerce Inc. This announcement comes after Spree’s raising of $1.5 million in a seed-funding round led by True Ventures. Other participants in the round include AOL Ventures and Sean Glass.

  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

    • Bristol City Council all clear for open source

      Bristol City Council has announced that there are “no security or accreditation issues that should hold us back from pushing ahead with our open source agenda”. The announcement was said by the council to be the result of working with the Cabinet Office after concerns were raised, by the council itself, about security accreditation for open source software. The council leader Barbara Janke said: “We have now been given the green light by the Cabinet Office to push ahead with this open source agenda and they have promised to work closely with us on this issue over the next few months”.

    • Cabinet Office Approves Bristol’s Open Source Plans

      The government’s cyber security arm has given Bristol council the go-ahead to use open source software

      Bristol City Council has been given the green light to push ahead with its open source strategy following a meeting with CESG, the cyber security arm of the UK intelligence services.

      The council first announced its intention to adopt open source alongside existing Microsoft software in September 2010. As part of an ongoing review of its desktop systems, the council was looking to replace its current email system with an open source alternative.

    • Bristol gears up for ‘fantastic’ open source project

      Bristol City Council is set to begin work on a major open source project, following a meeting called by the Cabinet Office.

      The meeting, held on Thursday last week, was attended by LinuxIT, an open source specialist located in the city. GCHQ, the government’s communications tracking headquarters, and vendors BeLIB and Nameless, also attended.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Data

      • Public Data Mining Project Prompts Concerns

        On the Internet, information is everywhere. From blogs to Tweets and everywhere in between, the data stream seems endless. For your average Web surfer, the majority of this information is irrelevant and may be disregarded. But what if casual information, like the kind found on blogs and Webcams, could be made useful?

        The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), a US government research agency, believes that this is possible, and that information from such sources may be able to predict the future.

    • Open Hardware

      • How open source can help you build a voice-activated robotic arm

        The project that I discovered was developed by UK Aerospace Engineer, Arthur Amarra, who normally works on the structural analysis of composite aircraft wings, but who professes to have been an avid linux geek for as long as he can remember.

        Amarra initially purchased the robotic arm as a gadget to play with and admits that the machine is not particularly useful in itself since it is only capable of lifting objects that weigh in at about 100 grams.

  • Programming


  • Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols: Microsoft’s Metro is on the wrong track for many Windows users

    Microsoft has made it clear that it considers Windows 8′s Metro interface and applications to be the future. When I look at Metro, however, I see gaudy colors, boxy designs, applications that can either run as a small tile or as full screen with no way to resize or move windows. Where have I seen this before? Wait, I know! Windows 1.0.

    Twenty-five years of user-interface development and this is what we get? Scary.

  • Censorship

    • Censorware or child protection? We need clarity from government and ISPs

      ISPs are discussing what they call “Active Choice”: that is, to insist that adults are given a yes / no choice before installing or using parental controls when they set up a new broadband connection.

      Now, there is a world of difference between offering sensible child safety, and trying to persuade adults to live with layers of censorship.

      Thus the devil is therefore in the detail, and how “options” are presented. Will adults be asked if they need parental controls, or if they want to “adult content” switched on?

    • Call your MP today to repeal the Web Blocking Clauses of the Digital Economy Act

      These amendments will be debated late this afternoon, and we need as many sympathetic MPs to be there as possible!

  • Copyrights

    • Can default P2P settings break the law? US says yes

      The Federal Trade Commission has decided that certain default software settings can violate the law against “unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce.” The agency recently went after the peer-to-peer filesharing program FrostWire for sharing too many user files by default, something that could easily lead to identity theft, copyright infringement, and the loss of “intimate photographs.” That’s right: the federal government now goes to court to protect the privacy of your nude smartphone pics.

    • Publishing. Right. Wrong. Otherwise!

      Think about this, and think hard. I’m going to list a bunch of media:

      * Video Laserdiscs
      * Betamax Videotapes
      * VHS Videotapes
      * Long Play Vinyl Records
      * Reel to Reel Audio Tapes
      * Eight Track Audio Tapes
      * Cassette Audio Tapes
      * Audio Compact Discs
      * Paper Books

      All of these media have a common purpose, to deliver a form of entertainment. They are a delivery system. Of course the delivery system has to be delivered, and it has to be displayed on shelf space.

      The current switch to electronic delivery of electronic files removes the need for a delivery system and for shelf space. This is why Borders went bankrupt in the United States, and it is why Chapters-Indigo in Canada has a smaller and smaller amount of shelf space devoted to books.

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