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Links 21/7/2012: Web Apps, Ubuntu and Dell

Posted in News Roundup at 10:28 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • The Open Source Initiative: Add your voice

    One of my personal open source community highlights this year was joining the Open Source Initiative (OSI) board. I first discovered OSI in 2003 when I was asked to weigh in on proposed legislation in Oregon that was designed to mandate the use of open source by all state agencies. Yep, I actually wrote the official executive branch position–but that’s another story.

  • Like an open book: Your 2012 summer reading
  • Open Source Drives Small Business

    Open-source software is a key driver for small business in the U.S. and contributes an enormous amount to the economy, perhaps to the tune of $1 trillion in economic output.

  • Open source alternatives to Windows Home Server

    The news that Microsoft is to kill off Windows Home Server in favour of a cut-down version of Windows Server 2012 hasn’t been met with universal approval. The low-cost, low-power Windows Home Server has proved popular since its introduction, and its absence is going to leave a hole in the market – a hole that the OEM-only Windows Server 2012 Foundation and $425 Windows Server 2012 Essentials is unlikely to fill.

  • Open Source Initiative Accepting Individual Members

    The Open Source Initiative (OSI) is now accepting individual members as the organization moves to enhance its impact in the open source world.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • LibreOffice Infographics
    • Spain’s Las Palmas’ moves 1200 PCs to LibreOffice

      The administration of the city of Las Palmas on the Canary Island will start using LibreOffice on all of its 1200 desktop PCs. This free and open source office suite is already used on nearly 120 of the city’s desktop PCs. In a press release published on 27 June, the city explains that is why it can calculate that the migration will save about 400,000 euros.

    • Oracle courts CentOS users

      On a recently published web page, Oracle addresses CentOS users in an attempt to persuade them to switch to Oracle Linux. On the page, the company even offers a scriptDirect download that makes various changes to CentOS or Scientific Linux (SL) installations and causes them to receive future package updates and operating system packages from the Oracle Linux repositories. Ultimately, this will turn CentOS and SL installations into Oracle Linux systems.

    • Manage Google Docs With LibreOffice
  • BSD

    • PC-BSD 9.1 preview

      PC-BSD 9.1 beta 1, the latest pre-stable version of what will become PC-BSD 9.1, has been released. PC-BSD is a desktop-centric distribution based on FreeBSD. It used to be primarily a KDE-using distribution, but the installer now has options to install a system using other major desktop environments.

      Aside from KDE, users can opt to install a PC-BSD desktop system powered by Xfce, LXDE or the GNOME desktop environment. The installer also makes it easy to install a FreeBSD server, as well as a server installation called TrueOS. Below are select screen shots from test installations of all four supported desktop environments.

    • FreeNAS 8.2.0
  • Project Releases

    • SelekTOR V2.07 released as open source.

      My reasons for going GPL are varied from folks worried about security issues regarding what SelekTOR does with their underlying system proxies to ensuring the longevity of the code as once its out there it can’t be taken back.
      Well not only do you have access to the debug facility here is the code as well.
      It also brings it in line with my other offerings which have been open source for quite some time.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Facebook exec: Celebration “premature” until OEMs open source their x86 systems

      Since unveiling its Open Compute Project and data center designs in 2011, Facebook’s Open Compute project has been rallying OEMs to support and build open, interchangeable components. At Oscon 2012 today, the project’s chief urged developers to accelerate the trend of open source hardware by refusing to buy “gratuitously differentiated” systems

  • Programming

    • Komodo 7.1 lets users add their own language support

      ActiveState has released version 7.1 of its integrated development environment (IDE) Komodo. The latest release of the IDE for Python, PHP, Ruby, JavaScript, Perl and web development includes several improvements to the editor as well as new features for cloud deployment and easier integration with version control systems. Komodo 7.1 also updates the IDE’s support for several languages and frameworks and lets users add language support themselves.


  • Sheldon Adelson, GOP Mega-Donor, Investigated for Bribing Chinese Government Officials

    Sheldon Adelson, Las Vegas casino magnate and GOP mega-donor, is being investigated by the U.S. Justice Department under suspicions he violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) while dealing with the Chinese government and his Macau casino ventures. The FCPA, introduced in 1977 by U.S. Senator William Proxmire (D-WI), prohibits American companies from bribing foreign government officials.

  • Here’s The Proposal The FCC Says Doesn’t Exist To Move Network Diagnostics To Proprietary Servers

    We recently wrote about some concerns by Vint Cerf and others that the FCC was considering a proposal to move some of their network diagnostics efforts — which are a really good thing — from the open M-Labs solution to proprietary servers run by the telcos. As we noted, the telcos denied that this was happening — and Henning Schulzrinne, the CTO of the FCC, showed up in our comments to strongly deny that such a proposal existed.

  • Security

  • Finance

    • Walmart Heirs Have As Much Wealth As Bottom 40 Percent Of Americans Combined

      Last year, Sylvia Allegretto, a labor economist at the Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics, found that as of 2007, the Walton family — heirs to the Walmart fortune — had a net worth equal to that of the bottom 30 percent of Americans. And due to the effects of the Great Recession that ratio has gotten substantially worse.

      New Federal Reserve data analyzed by both Allegretto and Josn Bivens at the Economic Policy Institute shows that the Waltons now hold as much wealth as the bottom 40 percent of Americans combined…

    • Export Nation: Does A Tipping Point Approach?

      Since 2009, exports from the US have grown at a faster rate than GDP. This is reflected in the weak, national recovery in jobs while export-oriented regions and export-sector jobs have fared much better. As US exports are nearing 15% of GDP, one wonders that a nation long accustomed to protecting consumption may finally have to think about protection, and enhancement, of production. | see: US Exports as a Percentage of GDP 2007 – 2012.

    • Goldman Sachs’s Blankfein Says Libor Scandal Undermines Trust

      Allegations of interest-rate rigging by global banks are hurting the financial system by undermining trust, said Lloyd C. Blankfein, chairman and chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

    • Donald Mullen, Ex-Goldman Sachs Mortgage Chief, Starts Fund For Buying Foreclosed Homes

      Former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. executive Donald Mullen, one of the architects of the subprime mortgage trade, is trying to raise at least $500 million for a fund that will buy foreclosed homes with an eye toward renting them out.

  • Civil Rights

    • It’s Bucky v. Adidas: Indonesia Labor Rights Violations Head to Court in Wisconsin

      A student rendering of Bucky Badger puts the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s furry mascot in a lock-up formed by the Adidas three-bar logo.

      But in a historic test, it is the midwestern university that is now putting Adidas on trial.

      The university filed a complaint against the global sportswear giant in Dane County Circuit Court on July 13 calling on a judge to determine whether the university’s code of conduct required Adidas to pay severance and other benefits to nearly 3,000 Indonesian workers. The workers were left jobless and impoverished by a Korean contractor’s abrupt exit from Indonesia in January 2011. The lawsuit marks the first time that one of the more than 100 U.S. universities in a national anti-sweatshop consortium has sought to enforce its code in the courts.

    • YouTube Introduces Face Blurring Tool To Protect Protesters

      As the governments are becoming more and more powerful and using all means to crush protest, it is becoming harder for activists to stand against suppressive governments.

      YouTube has become a very powerful means for citizens to provide video coverage/footage of events. But now governments are using these footage to identify protesters and take action against them. There is no way a protester can hide this identity and escape the wrath of government.

    • Is NSA’s Accumulo open source or Google knock-off?

      A new bill on Capitol Hill could have far reaching implications for government use and development of open source platforms – potentially requiring all open source projects to “prove adequate industry support and diversification.”

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