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Links 23/12/2011: Amarok 2.5, KDE SC 4.8 Release Candidate

Posted in News Roundup at 5:42 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Free Software/Open Source

  • Nine Open Source Discoveries I Made in 2011

    When writing about free and open source software, sometimes I seem to spend all my time complaining. So, after last week, when I described 2011 as a whole as a disappointment, I thought I should add some balance by mentioning some of the free software-related discoveries that delighted me during the past year.

    Many of these discoveries were not new in 2011, although several came into their own during the year. However, until the last twelve months, they were new to me. All are worth mentioning, just in case you’ve missed them:

  • Reinventing the open source wheel

    One of the greatest strengths of open source software development has been the notion that as an OSS developer, you can pretty much just pick and choose from the thousands of OSS projects out there to enrich your own project.

    (There are caveats to this idea, of course, the most obvious being license incompatibility. But, the general principle still holds.)

    But anecdotal evidence in the open source community seems to be demonstrating that the very opposite is occurring: new projects are often reinventing the wheel in their code, rather than partnering with someone else’s project.

  • Open Source Apps: the Monster List
  • Events

  • Web Browsers

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Project Releases

    • Ceylon Achieves Milestone 1

      Milestone 1 of Ceylon includes a reasonably complete and stable specification and a complete command line toolset (compiler, runtime, documentation compiler). A compatible release of the team’s Eclipse-based IDE is coming soon.

  • Licensing

    • VLC engine relicensed to LGPL

      As announced in a previous press release, VideoLAN and VLC developers have achieved the process of changing the license of the VLC engine to LGPL. The École Centrale Paris shares its happiness about this change.

  • Open Hardware

    • Arduino-Open Hardware and IDE Combo

      This article is a bit different from my usual column in two ways. First, it’s starting with a hardware and software combo—something I’ve not done before. Second, the projects are linked to each other and come recommended to me by Perth LUG member, Simon Newton.


  • Adobe’s Cloudware Announcement Stirs Pricing and Privacy Concerns
  • Security

  • Finance

    • A Christmas Message From America’s Rich

      It seems America’s bankers are tired of all the abuse. They’ve decided to speak out.

      True, they’re doing it from behind the ropeline, in front of friendly crowds at industry conferences and country clubs, meaning they don’t have to look the rest of America in the eye when they call us all imbeciles and complain that they shouldn’t have to apologize for being so successful.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • A New Lowe in Advertiser Cowardice

      The national hardware chain Lowe’s pulled its advertising from the TLC reality show All-American Muslim–explaining that the question of whether Muslims can be presented as regular human beings is a “hotly contested debate.”

      All-American Muslim is a reality show described by TLC, the cable channel that airs it, as “a look at life in Dearborn, Michigan–home to the largest mosque in the United States–through the lens of five Muslim American families…an intimate look at the customs and celebrations, misconceptions and conflicts these families face outside and within their own community.”

  • Civil Rights

    • SOPA Broken Even Before Being Passed

      The way some congressmen are desperate to pass dangerous SOPA, ignoring all the warning being given by IT experts, shows how much money speaks when it comes to passing laws. SOPA is nothing short of a measure to break the Internet just to entertain the entertainment industry which is failing to keep up with the technological evolution.

  • Copyrights

    • Anti-piracy laws will smash internet, US constitution – legal eagles

      Legal experts are warning that the proposed PROTECT IP and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) legislation, currently working their way through Congress, will damage the world’s DNS system, cripple attempts to get better online security and violate free speech rights in the US constitution.

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