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11.15.11

Links 15/11/2011: Mandriva Linux Powerpack 2011, Fedora 16 Reviews

Posted in News Roundup at 7:39 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • The Automotive Linux Summit Marks Linux’s Bright Future in Vehicles

      If you cycled the clock back a few years, you would find lots of people still debating whether Linux had the potential to dominate as a desktop operating system. Fast-forward to today, and it’s clear that Linux is in fact finding many of its biggest opportunities at the server level, in mobile devices, in embedded Linux deployments, and in other scenarios that lie outside the desktop computing arena. There are also more and more signs that the next frontier for Linux may be in cars, with big backers interested in the idea. And now, The Linux Foundation has announced its program for the first-ever Automotive Linux Summit taking place November 28, 2011 in Yokohama, Japan.

    • AMD Linux KVM Virtualization Benchmarks

      In recent weeks there have been a lot of AMD Linux benchmarks of the latest-generation Bulldozer processor, namely the eight-core FX-8150. The latest unique look at the first-generation Bulldozer CPU under Linux is the KVM virtualization performance.

    • Managing Live and Offline Migrations with Linux’s KVM
  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

  • Distributions

    • “The New Linux Distros Edition” of Dr. Bill.TV Netcast #214
    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • The brand new Mandriva Linux Powerpack 2011 is here

        Following the Mandriva Linux free 2011 Mandriva is proud to launch the Mandriva Powerpack 2011, the full version of Mandriva Linux! Based on its new product strategy, Mandriva changes the release procedure, aiming for a one-year period between major releases. However, Mandriva will also release updated versions of its products on a periodic time on a 6-month basis.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat reveals that RHEL 6.2 will support AMD’s Bulldozer power saving features

        LINUX VENDOR Red Hat has said that its upcoming Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.2 (RHEL) will support all of the power saving features of AMD’s Bulldozer Opteron processors.

        AMD’s Bulldozer Opteron chips deliver a number of new features that the firm claims help it beat Intel’s Xeon processors when it comes to all-important power consumption. The problem is few operating systems actually make use of AMD’s power tweaks such as the C6 state, but Red Hat has confirmed that RHEL 6.2 will support all of Bulldozer’s power saving features.

      • Taking oVirt for a Spin

        The new open-source project is focused on delivering an openly developed and freely licensed virtualization system.

      • Red Hat Provides Comprehensive Lifecycle Support for Java in the Cloud with OpenShift PaaS

        With OpenShift, Red Hat offers a compelling PaaS built on open source technologies that enables developers to quickly develop and deploy applications on the cloud. OpenShift provides built-in auto-scaling, supports a wide variety of languages, frameworks, middleware and clouds and is available free of charge. In August, Red Hat announced that it was the first to deliver Java EE 6 on a PaaS with OpenShift, powered by Red Hat’s JBoss application platform technology. Today, OpenShift expands upon its Java capabilities with the integration of several technologies that allow OpenShift to offer a fuller Java lifecycle for developers — developers can now code their application in an IDE, as well as build, deploy and scale it with OpenShift.

      • Red Hat: Let OpenShift cloud compile your Java apps

        Red Hat doesn’t just want to run your apps on its OpenShift cloud. It wants you to code, compile, tweak, and repeat the process on its cloud until you get the applications just right and get rid of that workstation or heavy laptop you lug around.

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 16 KDE: Improving Perfection

          Desktop Environment is very important part of today’s Linux distribution which pretends to be used on desktop or laptop. There are some Linux distributions which give you only one Desktop Environment by default, being it Pardus with KDE or CentOS with GNOME. As opposite, there are distributions which are supplied with selection of different DEs available:

        • Fedora 16 Review: When An Ubuntu User Tries Fedora

          Fedora 16 was released a few days ago and I was looking forward to this release. I used to be a Fedora user in the early days, when I had more time to play with my PC. Ever since I switched to Debian and then Ubuntu, I just fell in love with apt-get’s smart dependency resolution. I was finally out of the RMP hell. I did dabble with Fedora here and there, once in a while but 14 and 15 were both quite unstable for me. So, I distanced myself from Fedora.

        • Almost that time of year…
        • Kororaa 14 no longer supported
    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Kubuntu 12.04 LTS and Lubuntu 12.04 Highlights

              As we’ve stated in our previous article, Allison Randal from Canonical announced a few days ago the highlights for the upcoming Kubuntu 12.04 LTS and Lubuntu 12.04, as well as for Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, Ubuntu Server 12.04 LTS and Edubuntu 12.04 LTS (presented in a separate article).

            • Get an Early Taste of Linux Mint 12

              Just a week or so after revealing that Linux Mint 12 would be taking a hybrid approach to introducing GNOME 3, the project behind the free operating system on Saturday announced the debut of a release candidate of the software.

            • Will a Spoonful of Mint Help the GNOME 3 Go Down?

              If a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down, as Mary Poppins once sagely said, will a splash of Mint help users swallow GNOME 3?

              That, indeed, appears to be the question of the day now that the Linux Mint project has announced a hybrid desktop strategy for Linux Mint 12 that’s apparently designed to help ease users into the controversial new interface.

              “The future of Linux Mint is GNOME 3,” asserted Clement Lefebvre, Linux Mint founder and project leader, in a recent blog post. “The present of Linux Mint is a simple question: ‘How do we make people like GNOME 3? And what do we provide as an alternative to those who still do not want to change?’”

            • Linux Mint 12 RC1 adds GNOME 2.x-like extensions to GNOME 3.2

              Linux Mint 12 (“Lisa”) RC1 was released, based on Ubuntu 11.10 and Linux 3.0. RC1 offers the GNOME 3.2 desktop, but augments it with “MGSE” extensions that let users create a more GNOME 2.3x-like environment, and also supplies a desktop called MATE that’s claimed to be a GNOME 3.x-compatible version of GNOME 2.x.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Wind River Linux stack targets residential gateways

      Wind River announced a pre-validated stack built on Wind River Linux 4.2, aimed at development of home gateway systems for automation and multimedia. Wind River Platform for Gateways supports two ARM11-based processors — the Mindspeed Comcerto 1000 and the Cavium Econa CNS3xxx — and features software from DigiOn (DLNA), Makewave and ProSyst (OSGi for Java), Works Systems (remote management), and Skelmir (virtual machine technology).

    • Tuning Embedded Linux: When Less is More

      There’s a saying that you can never be too rich, or too thin. While that’s a bit of hyperbole, thin is definitely in when it comes to embedded Linux. Luckily, trimming the fat off Linux for embedded use is a lot easier than getting rich or losing that spare tire. Intel’s Darren Hart explained how he slimmed Linux down at the Embedded Linux Conference in October.

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Android 4.0 face recognition flawed

          The face recognition unlock feature in Google’s Android 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich” mobile operating system has been bypassed by a simple photo trick. A blogger recently demonstrated how easy it was to unlock the device. He took a photo of himself using another phone and held it up to the front facing camera on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, the first smartphone to run Android 4.0, which was then unlocked.

        • Top Free Android Web Browsers
        • Google Releases Source Code for Ice Cream Sandwich. And yeah, there’s Honeycomb too

          Google has just released source code for the latest version of Android, that is Ice Cream Sandwich. According to this Google Groups post by Jean-Baptiste Queru a.k.a JBQ, the code for Android 4.0 is currently being pushed to the servers and will take some time to complete. The release, which also includes the source code for Honeycomb, will enable manufacturers to start prepping their own devices for the big upgrade.

        • Source Code Android 4 (ICS) released

          “Hi! We just released a bit of code we thought this group might be interested in. Over at our Android Open-Source Project git servers, the source code for Android version 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) is now available.”

        • Google Slaps Critics, Releases Android 4.0 And Honeycomb Source Code

          Google has shut the mouth of its critics by releasing the source code or Android 4.0 aka IceCream Sandwich. Jean-Baptiste M. ‘JBQ’ Queru, software engineer from AOSP (Android open source project) wrote on Google group, “Over at our Android open source project git servers, the source code for Android version 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) is now available.”

        • Rugged handheld offers capacitive touch plus 1GHz Cortex-A8 processor

          Winmate announced a rugged handheld computer that includes a 4.3-inch capacitive touchscreen and runs Android 2.3.4 on a 1GHz Cortex-A8-based Texas Instruments DM3730. The E430T offers IP65-level sealing, up to 512MB of RAM, five- and two-megapixel cameras, plus wireless technologies including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, and 3.5G cellular.

        • Google releases Android 4.0 source — and Honeycomb too
        • Google releases Android 4.0 ‘Ice Cream Sandwich’ source
    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Amazon’s Kindle Fire ships a day early

        Amazon began shipping its Kindle Fire tablet device Nov. 14, a day early. The $200, seven-inch Android tablet will compete against the Nook Tablet and Apple iPad, among others, for holiday dollars.

      • HTC to unveil quad-core tablet PC at MWC, says paper

        HTC is likely to unveil a new Android-based tablet PC running on a quad-core CPU from Nvidia along with two new Android smartphones in February at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2012, according to a Chinese-language Commercial Times report.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Adobe moves Flex SDK to independent open source project

    Adobe will move its Flex SDK to the Open Spoon Foundation. The vendor said that the “Spoon Project” was created from within the Adobe community, and that it will continue to maintain and develop the SDK. Although Adobe now advocates HTML5 as the best technology for enterprise application development, it has promised to continue contributing to the development of the Flex SDK.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • What Is Mozilla’s Mobile OS?

        Linux users have always been happy with the sheer amount of choice available to them. When the mobile sector is considered, yes, it does lack in the field of choice when compared to the thousands of distros available for the desktop. Well, mobile users, its time for a treat. Mozilla Foundation’s Boot 2 Gecko project is said to be finalized by Q2 2012.

      • HTML5 games, video get boost from full-screen API in Firefox nightly

        Support for the HTML full-screen API was recently enabled in Firefox nightly builds. It allows Web applications to toggle the browser into full-screen mode and stretch a single page element so that it fills the user’s display.

        The feature will be especially useful for the HTML5 video element, making it easy for developers to add native full-screen playback to their custom HTML video player interfaces. It will also likely be useful for games and other kinds of content where fullscreen interaction is desirable.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Oracle v. Google – Google Files Writ; Oracle Complains About Production of Witnesses

      Google has now filed a petition for a writ of mandamus with the Federal Circuit seeking review of the district court’s ruling on the Lindholm emails. The petition was filed November 4 and the matter is denominated In Re Google, 2012-M106. Oracle is required to respond to the petition no later than November 28.

      A writ of mandamus is an equitable remedy. Consequently, the Federal Circuit has discretion in considering the matter and responding to it. While Google certainly has a good faith argument for protecting the Lindholm email, there should be little doubt that they are swimming upstream in their continued attempts to suppress the email.

    • Oracle v. Google – Copyright Fight Moves To Trial; Oracle Gains Some Depos

      Not surprisingly, Google disagreed (615 (PDF; Text]) with Oracle’s characterization that Google was refusing to produce witnesses for depositions. (See, Google Files Writ; Oracle Complains About Production of Witnesses) However, in the end it doesn’t make any difference because Judge Alsup has made the call. (617 [PDF; Text]) Google had offered to make two of the witnesses available to Oracle for deposition (Bray and Rizzo), but Google refused to produce the other five (Agarwal, Bornstein, Rubin, Swetland, and Yellin).

      Judge Alsup, in what appears to be a more and more frequent use of the “split the baby” approach, has granted Oracle the right to depose any three of the seven. Oracle may depose those three for up to two hours each, but only on their testimony related to the Leonard and Cox damage reports.

  • Social

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Run today’s GNU!

      It’s a fresh QEMU image of GNU (aka. GNU/Hurd), the extensible operating system designed to liberate users from the tyranny of sysadmins, professional kernel hackers, and other restrictions to Freedom #1.

  • Project Releases

    • Tomahawk media player version 0.3 released

      The Tomahawk developers have released version 0.3 of their open source media player. The cross-platform application has the ability to play any file chosen no matter its location. Version 0.3 has many additional features, including a global search bar which can search across all available sources.

  • Licensing

    • GPL upheld in Berlin case

      AVM Computersystems had sought legal sanction to prevent Cybits from making changes to the code that is used in its routers, in particular code covered by the GPL in its popular Fritz!Box product.

      According to the Free Software Foundation Europe, this code comes from the Linux kernel and is thus open to modification, provided the changes are made available to anyone to whom the code is then distributed.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • What a classroom will look like in 10 years

      Classrooms of the future will be equipped with technology that supports the open source way – openness, transparency, collaboration and diversity. We may need to wait more than 10 years, but hopefully not!

  • Programming

    • AMD Bulldozer only FMA4 and XOP instructions are supported by GCC

      AMD’s Bulldozer Opteron 6200 series chips might be the firm’s first 16-core processors but the firm has done a bit more than increase its maximum core count by four, adding two new instructions. Both 4200 series and 6200 series Opteron processors have AMD-only FMA4 and XOP instructions, and the firm told The INQUIRER that popular compilers including the GNU C Compiler (GCC) already support these instructions.

    • Obfuscated C contest returns after five year break

      The International Obfuscated C Code Contest (IOCCC) has returned and announced the start of 20th competition; the contest had been on hiatus, with no results published for the last one, which was held in 2006. Now, the contest is back and, from 12 November 2011 to 12 January 2012, entries are being accepted in the competition to write the most obscure or obfuscated C program which will illustrate, perversely, the importance of programming style, stress C compilers with strange code, and demonstrate the subtleties of the C language. Although the competition is already open, online submissions will only be accepted from 1 December 2011 as the submission system is being upgraded.

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Finance

    • A Decade of MSFT

      M$ can afford to maintain share price by increasing dividends but they cannot stem the flow of mindshare to other technologies. At the moment, predictions are that ARMed thingies will continue to grow while x86 stagnates for years. At this rate, M$’s installed base will start to shrink shortly and it will do well to save 50% of shipments for itself within three years. With that kind of competition the monopoly will be truly dead.

  • Privacy

    • W3C privacy workgroup issues first draft of Do Not Track standard

      W3C has published the first draft of a new Web standard that addresses online privacy. It establishes an official specification for the mechanism that browsers use to broadcast the “Do Not Track” (DNT) privacy preference to websites. The draft was authored by a new W3C Tracking Protection Working Group and could be ratified as an official standard by the middle of next year.

      Mozilla originally introduced the DNT setting in Firefox 4 earlier this year. The feature consists of a simple HTTP header flag that can be toggled through the browser’s preference dialog. The flag tells website operators and advertisers that the user wants to opt out of invasive tracking and other similar practices that have become pervasive with the rise of behavioral advertising.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • The Coming Fascist Internet

      Around four decades ago or so, at the U.S. Defense Department funded ARPANET’s first site at UCLA — what would of course become the genesis of the global Internet — I spent a lot of time alone in the ARPANET computer room. I’d work frequently at terminals sandwiched between two large, noisy, minicomputers, a few feet from the first ARPANET router — Interface Message Processor (IMP) #1, which empowered the “blindingly fast” 56 Kb/s ARPANET backbone. Somewhere I have a photo of the famous “Robby the Robot” standing next to that nearly refrigerator-sized cabinet and its similarly-sized modem box.

      I had a cubicle I shared elsewhere in the building where I also worked, but I kept serious hacker’s hours back then, preferring to work late into the night, and the isolation of the computer room was somehow enticing.

      Even the muted roar of the equipment fans had its own allure, further cutting off the outside world (though likely not particularly good for one’s hearing in the long run).

      Occasionally in the wee hours, I’d shut off the room’s harsh fluorescent lights for a minute or two, and watch the many blinking lights play across the equipment racks, often in synchronization with the pulsing and clicking sounds of the huge disk drives.

IRC Proceedings: November 14th, 2011

Posted in IRC Logs at 11:52 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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#boycottnovell log

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#techbytes log

Enter the IRC channels now

IRC Proceedings: November 13th, 2011

Posted in IRC Logs at 11:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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GNOME Gedit

#techrights log

#boycottnovell log

GNOME Gedit

GNOME Gedit

#boycottnovell-social log

#techbytes log

Enter the IRC channels now

IRC Proceedings: November 12th, 2011

Posted in IRC Logs at 11:40 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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GNOME Gedit

#techrights log

#boycottnovell log

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Enter the IRC channels now

Links 15/11/2011: Linux still Rules HPC

Posted in News Roundup at 11:17 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

  • Server

    • Where Linux crushes Windows like a bug: Supercomputers

      The faster a computer goes, the more likely is to have Linux at its heart. The most recent Top500 list of supercomputers shows that, if anything, Linux is becoming even more popular at computing’s high end.

      In the latest Top500 Supercomputer list, you’ll find when you dig into the supercomputer statistics that Linux runs 457 of the world’s fastest computers. That’s 91.4%. Linux is followed by Unix, with 30 or 6%; mixed operating systems with 11 supercomputers, 2.2%. In the back of the line, you’ll find OpenSolaris and BSD with 1 computer and–oh me, oh my–Windows also with just 1 supercomputer to its credit. That’s a drop from 4 in the last supercomputer round up in June.

    • NetGear Expands Entry-Level Network Attached Storage

      Storage boxes that deliver content sit at the very heart of the cloud. When it comes to building out your own personal or small business cloud, having enough storage performance is a critical component. That’s where networking vendor NetGear aims to help, with a new generation of its home and small business network attached storage (NAS) devices.

  • Kernel Space

    • The Linux Foundation Announces Program for Automotive Linux Summit

      The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux, today announced its program for the first-ever Automotive Linux Summit taking place November 28, 2011 in Yokohama, Japan.

      The Automotive Linux Summit will bring together the brightest minds from the automotive industry, the Linux developer community and the mobility ecosystem. As the premier vendor-neutral business and technical conference focused on Linux and automotive technologies, attendees can expect to learn about how to use Linux and open source software in automotive applications, ranging from in-vehicle on-board systems to cloud solutions for vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communications.

    • Evolution of kernel size
  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

    • GNOME Desktop

      • New Desktop Interface Flops

        If you follow my work, you won’t be surprised to know that I really dislike Windows 8’s proposed new interface, Metro. That’s not because I hate everything from Microsoft. It’s because I hate anything that’s a bad design, and it’s not just Microsoft that’s guilty of that. So are open-source groups such as GNOME.

        Unlike my colleague Ken Hess who hates just about all the newest interfaces, I do like some of the new ones… in their place.

  • Distributions

    • ArchBang 2011 Review

      Here is another light, fast, and fun distribution for everyone to try, ArchBang leaves a long-lasting impression. ArchBang delivers a useful Live CD, the OpenBox window manager, and all the basic applications you might need, all on top of the powerful and robust Arch Linux core. OpenBox will allow users to experiment with a highly customizable interface that remains relatively simple. And of course everyone will be impressed by the blazing speed this distribution will bring to your system. Get the most out of your system with this great operating system, ArchBang is another excellent choice for laptops and desktops alike.

    • Five new distros you should not miss

      As one becomes familiar with the rich wealth of distros available, the developer’s and the community’s user experience too grows helping it the drive the resourceful open source platform to achieve greater heights.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • Mageia wiki finally online

        We wanted to replace that by some really nice wiki since then but there always was something with a higher priority, so it had to wait.

        Now, a few weeks ago, we already had a working MediaWiki instance and the teams were working under quite some pressure to import all the contents that has grown over the months in the temporary wiki, cleaning it up and giving it some structure while doing that.

    • Gentoo Family

      • The Linux Setup – Fabio Erculiani, Sabayon Linux

        Fabio Erculiani is the man behind Sabayon Linux, a fantastic, rolling distribution based upon Gentoo (but much easier to manage). My thoughts on Sabayon are here. Fabio does a lot of different things on Sabayon, from the desktop to the server level. You have to appreciate a person that eats his own cooking.

      • Sabayon Linux developers split the Portage sabayon overlay into two new overlays

        If you are a Gentoo Linux user who added the sabayon overlay, or if you are a Sabayon Linux user who already uses Portage, note that the developers of Sabayon Linux have just split the overlay into two overlays. One of the overlays (sabayon-distro) contains ebuilds that are specific to the Sabayon Linux distribution and unlikely to be of interest to users of other distributions that use the Portage package manager. The other overlay (sabayon) contains ebuilds that could be of interest to Portage users of other distributions.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Is Ubuntu’s Dominance on Personal Desktops Slipping?

            For at least five years, Ubuntu has been the pre-eminent Linux distribution for desktop users. None of the other polished distros, such as Fedora or Debian, came close to capturing Canonical’s market share or mind share in the open source world. But writing on the wall is beginning to suggest that the Age of Ubuntu could be coming to an end, at least on the desktop. Here’s why.

            Lest I come off as too sensationalist, let me point out that neither Ubuntu nor Canonical is going to disappear anytime soon. Even if Ubuntu ceases to be the most popular Linux for personal desktops, we can expect it to remain important as a second or third choice for years to come.

          • Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Will Not Support Old CPUs
          • Ubuntu’s Tablet Ambition: Doomed to Fail

            For several years now, Ubuntu and other Linux distributions have worked to make their Linux releases available as a pre-installed option whenever possible. Some of the most famous examples are the Linspire and Xandros offerings that were once found at Sears and Walmart.

            A few years after these flopped, Dell introduced PCs pre-loaded with Ubuntu. However, each of these pre-installed efforts met with an untimely demise. The PC sellers blamed the lack of demand, while others such as myself blamed the worst PC marketing attempts in history.

            The pre-installed Linux PC failure in big box stores coincides with the inability to clearly identity the target of who would want the Linux PC. I feel confident in saying this, because other vendors that sell Linux PCs exclusively have done very well for themselves. Even when targeting non-Linux enthusiasts, the target message was always clearly spelled out.

          • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 241
          • Will 12.04 changes bring Ubuntu back to prominence?
          • What Changes Will Ubuntu 12.04 Bring?
          • HealthCheck Ubuntu – The search for unity

            Ubuntu has over 20 million users around the world and is by far the most popular Linux distribution on the planet, but for the first time since the release of Warty Warthog in October 2004, an Ubuntu release is not being greeted with universal acclaim and there are mutterings of discord among the Ubuntu community.

          • The best Ubuntu backup tools
          • Flavours and Variants

            • Download Linux Mint 12 Release Candidate

              Right after our first look aticle of Linux Mint 12, Clement Lefebvre proudly announced on his blog that the Release Candidate version of the upcoming Linux Mint 12 operating system is available for download and testing.

            • Pinguy OS 11.10 (Final, Yet Beta) Released

              Pinguy OS 11.10 has been released today and comes with GNOME Shell (on top of GNOME 3.2.1) as default. Even though this is most probably the final version, it’s called “beta”…

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Piracy bill could waylay FLOSS projects

    If you’re at all tuned into the Internet, then it’s very likely that you have heard about two bills currently making their way through the two houses of the US Congress that several organizations have said will “break the Internet.”

    The bills, PROTECT IP (S. 968) and Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) (HR. 3261), are two pieces of legislation with essentially the same theme: give private copyright holders more tools to pull down pirated copy from the Internet. That sounds good on paper, but delving down into the details of each bill reveals some potentially serious problems for free and open source software (FLOSS) developers.

    Each bill has the same basic approach: if a copyright holder finds content on a website that they believe infringes on their copyright, then they can go to any vendor who helps provide revenue to that site and request that the vendor cease working with the site. For instance, the request could go to any ad providers for the allegedly infringing site, and under the new law the ad provider would have five days to cut their ads from the site. Or, if the site uses credit cards or an online payment system like PayPal, the copyright holder can also get those organizations to stop supporting the website.

  • Making an open source software can be more profitable in the long term

    Imagine what would happen if Coca Cola shared its secret formula, or a popular restaurant shared its secret sauce recipe. When source codes of software are shared beyond the secret society of their proprietors, a whole new world with unimaginable technical possibilities is opened. Contrary to popular belief that the proprietors of the secret sauce would lose their pie, they actually get a slice of a much, much larger pie, which makes better business sense.

    After all, many of today’s tech rock stars like Google and Facebook follow the open source paradigm. These firms had implemented their ideas using open source technologies when they had started. And today, they allow free distribution of software developed by them for their internal use. Such open-sourcing enables newer startups to take advantage, yet again.

  • Introducing the ColorHug open source colorimeter

    For the past 3 weeks I’ve been working long nights on an open source colorimeter called the ColorHug. This is hardware that measures the colors shown on the screen and creates a color profile. Existing hardware is proprietary and 100% closed, and my hardware is open source. It has a GPL bootloader, GPL firmware image and GPL hardware schematics and PCBs. It’s faster than the proprietary hardware, and more importantly a lot cheaper.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 10, What’s New?

        After having some initial troubles getting my add-ons to work under Firefox 10 Aurora I had time to look at the changes and new features of this release. Firefox 10 will be the next but one stable release of the web browser which means that stable channel users will have to wait about 12 weeks before they can upgrade their browser to this version.

      • Firefox 10: Can Mozilla Afford To Miss Silent Updates?

        Mozilla released the downloads of Firefox 9 Beta, which will be released just before Christmas as final, as well as Firefox 10 Aurora, the developer version of Firefox. But even with six new versions within one year, Mozilla may not have accomplished what the rapid release process promised: Most notably, Mozilla released substantial memory improvements this year, but it will miss some features it so desperately needs to compete with Chrome.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • OpenOffice.org: Five Months of Incubation at ASF

      At Apache, they have 75 developers and they are still reviewing the code to check licensing to ASL.

      “Before we can produce an Apache release, we must complete the code clearance step, ensuring that the license headers include License and Notification files for all artifacts in the build be done to the satisfaction of the PPMC and the Incubator PMC which governs the Apache OpenOffice podling. This will clear the way forward to develop a realistic target date for issuing our first ‘Apache OpenOffice.org’ release “

  • Funding

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Swedish activist receives Nordic Free Software Award 2011

      Erik Josefsson is the winner of the Nordic Free Software Award 2011. With the award, the Swedish Foundation for Free Culture and Free Software (FFKP) honours Josefsson for his achievements as a campaigner for freedom in the information society.

      “We are proud to honour Erik for the tremendously important work he has done over the past ten years”, says FFKP Executive Director Jonas Öberg. “Erik has an exceptional ability to understand and explain the link between policy and technology. We are hugely grateful for his work. He is an inspiration to all of us.”

  • Project Releases

    • QEMU 1.0 Is Coming Quite Soon

      Version 1.0 of QEMU will be released next month in time for the holidays with several interesting advancements. QEMU is the popular open-source machine emulator and virtualizer that also plays a role in the Linux KVM virtualization stack.

      QEMU 1.0 is expected to be tagged on the first of December. New features to QEMU 1.0 will be a new memory API, support for the Tensilica Xtensa, SCSI improvements, and a Tiny Code Interpreter (TCI).

  • Licensing

    • Copyright in Open Source Software – Understanding the Boundaries

      Copyright ownership tends not to be an issue in closed-source, software development. In that model an individual or business owns – or in-licenses – the copyright in all of the code used in the software application, licenses it to end-users under a binary-only license, and relies on a combination of copyright and trade secret law to enforce contractual rights in the code. By contrast, when software is developed in an open source model, copyright issues abound, and many of these copyright issues are not well understood by software developers. This lack of understanding can undermine the intent of the developers and can potentially lead to unattractive outcomes. As early as the launch of conceptual design in open source software, issues can arise as to ownership of the work and its progeny. When a wide range of hands can touch the open source code, ownership and rights in the code can become blurred. Moreover, not all code contributions to an open source project will be protected by copyright. This paper seeks to explore the application of U.S. copyright law to software, and particularly software that is developed and licensed under an open source model. We address the boundaries of copyright protection and ownership, the importance of intent, timing and creative expression in determining these boundaries, and provide guidance to those looking to launch open source projects.

    • German courts say embedded open source firmware open to modification

      A major challenge to the principles of free software was thrown out of a German district court last week.

      German DSL router vendor AVM had attempted to stop Cybits, which produces children’s web filtering software, from modifying any part of the firmware used in its routers, including a key piece of Linux-based free software.

  • Programming

    • Five years of open-source Java: Freedom isn’t (quite) free

      Open source Java has a long and torrid history, rife with corporate rivalry, very public fallings-out, and ideological misgivings. But has all the effort and rumpus that went into creating an officially sanctioned open JDK been worth it?

      Java co-creator James Gosling certainly thinks so – although he didn’t seem entirely open to the idea in the early days.

Leftovers

  • Google flings Bing into search engine bin

    According to ComScore, Bing is struggling to add users – despite Microsoft’s expensive efforts to make the search engine a serious contender against the Chocolate Factory.

  • Security

    • Search Engines Can Expose Open Source Holes

      Tools such as Google Code Search can provide hackers with a wealth of information hidden in open source code, writes Eric Doyle

      The downside of open source is its very openness. Hackers are using Open Source Intelligence (OSint) to find personal information and even passwords and usernames to plan their exploits.

      Organisations like Anonymous and LulzSec have been using Google Code Search – a public beta in which Google let users search for open source code on the Internet – according to Stach & Lui, a penetration testing firm. In Code Search, they can unearth information to assist them in their exploits, for instance finding passwords for cloud services which have been embedded in code, or configuration data for virtual private networks, or just vulnerabilities that lay the system open to other hacking ploys, such as SQL injection.

  • Finance

  • Spam

    • South Korea proposes restricting all e-mail sending to official e-mail servers

      According to the BBC, South Korea’s Internet and Security Agency is asking all ISPs to block all e-mail sent from anything but “official” e-mail servers. The idea is to block spam, but will it really accomplish this goal?

      It’s not like this is a new idea. The Anti-Spam Technical Alliance proposed it as a best e-mail practice for ISPs in 2004. It’s a simple idea. If an ISP blocks the default Simple Mail Transport Protocol (SMTP) port, Port 25, from sending e-mail messages, users will be forced to use their ISP’s mail servers. This, in turn, the theory, goes will magically stop spam.

  • Civil Rights

  • Copyrights

    • Keystone XL and the Future of Bill C-11

      In 2005, the then-Liberal government introduced Bill C-60, the first attempt at digital copyright reform in Canada. The bill included digital lock provisions that linked circumvention to copyright infringement (as supported today by dozens of Canadian organizations) and did not create a ban on the tools that can be used to circumvent. The approach was consistent with the WIPO Internet treaties, but left the U.S. very unhappy.

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