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08.11.12

Links 11/8/2012: GNOME OS, OSI for Internet Freedom

Posted in News Roundup at 8:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • How To Emulate A TI Calculator On Linux

    For a lot of geeks, the Texas Instrument Scientific Calculator was their best friends during classes in high school. Not so long ago, I remember programming a Space Invader game in TI-Basic during a Maths lesson. But as a downside to growing up: a lot of us had to leave our precious TI at the bottom of a drawer. Thanks to emulation and our favorite OS, it is possible to use a TI again with nostalgia. Two programs are available for that purpose, both with their advantages.

  • Desktop

  • Server

    • Linux distributors duke it out in cloud OS market

      Linux operating system distributor Suse says it is gaining ground among cloud service providers as their choice platform for delivering the open source OS to customers, but at least one analyst says the market is still split between the Suse, Red Hat and Canonical’s Ubuntu.

      Suse issued updated figures this week saying that it works with 20 cloud service providers (CSPs) to offer Linux OS to 15,000 enterprises. It lists major CSP customers as Amazon Web Services, Dell, Intel, Verizon and, most recently, Microsoft Azure.

      “The latest addition of Microsoft Windows Azure to the Suse Cloud Program demonstrates Suse’s growing momentum as the de facto standard enterprise Linux operating system offered by cloud providers,” the company said in a press release issued this week.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • HelenOS 0.5: Micro-Kernel Multi-Server OS Release

      HelenOS 0.5.0 represents improvements made to this open-source operating system since March of 2011. Some of the key improvements to this original operating system are USB support (USB v1.1). a re-implemented networking stack with full TCP support, Realtek RTL8139 / Intel E1000 network drivers, read-only EXT2 and ISO9660 file-system support, read-write MINIX FS support, and some new ported applications. The ported applications to HelenOS include GNU Binutils, PCC (Portable C Compiler), and MSIM (MIPS R4000 simulator).

    • Linux Foundation Heads to Korea, Thanks to Samsung

      The Linux Foundation is bringing Linus Torvalds to South Korea. Torvalds will be a key speaker at the inaugural Korea Linux Forum which is set to occur October 11 to 12 in Seoul, South Korea.

      Linux is certainly no stranger to Asia, though the Linux Foundation seems to have had more events (and success) in Japan in recent years. The move to have an event in Korea is being driven by consumer electronics giant Samsung.

    • MTE Explains : The Origin Of The Penguin Tux

      Apple’s logo is a half-bitten apple. Windows’s logo somewhat looks like a window (at least in the beginning). So why is there a penguin as a mascot for Linux? And why is it called Tux? And where does it come from? And why is it a mascot and not a logo? And so on. Yes, we have a lot of questions about Linux, but strangely, there is a lot more about the penguin.

    • Kernel Log: Major overhaul of Nouveau

      The kernel driver for NVIDIA graphics chips is undergoing a major overhaul. KVM is now available for MIPS. The new “lslocks” lists locked files and displays the programs that locked them.

    • Graphics Stack

      • Mesa Release Shake-Up: Mesa 8.1 Is Now Mesa 9.0

        Well, there isn’t a major Mesa release happening this month as was originally planned. There also isn’t going to be a Mesa 8.1 release. Instead, Mesa 9.0 will be released in September.

        Intel’s Ian Romanick began laying out these new plans last night with the other Mesa developers. This shake-up is happening in part because Intel’s planning for OpenGL ES 3.0 support in Mesa by early next year — plans they publicly announced earlier this week at SIGGRAPH in Los Angeles.

      • GLAMOR 0.5 Acceleration Library Released
      • MSAA Anti-Aliasing For AMD Radeon Evergreen GPUs
      • Mesa Support For OpenGL 3.1 Core Contexts
      • Celebrating 20 Years Of OpenGL At SIGGRAPH 2012

        SIGGRAPH 2012 in Los Angeles is in full swing this week and beyond the usual exciting announcements — new OpenGL specifications and other Khronos announcements — the 20th anniversary of OpenGL is being celebrated from this leading industry graphics conference.

        For those not at SIGGRAPH LA 2012 (unfortunately I’m not there to provide any live coverage on Phoronix), here are some Internet resources:

      • X.Org Server 1.13 Nears: Baking Cookies

        The non-critical bug window for X.Org Server 1.13 is now closed and Keith Packard has announced the release of xorg-server 1.12.99.904.

        The new features, like the driver re-work for PRIME DRI2 offloading and the nuking of XAA and new GLX support, is detailed in X.Org Server 1.13 RC1 Packs In Many Changes.

      • NVIDIA To Meet With X.Org Developers Next Month

        NVIDIA doesn’t usually show up at the annual X.Org Developers’ Summits/Conferences, but for some reason at least one NVIDIA employee will be trekking to Germany for meeting with the open-source developers.

        Earlier this week I was surprised (as shared on Twitter) when I received an automated notification that Andy Ritger signed up to be at XDC2012. Andy Ritger is a long-time NVIDIA Linux/UNIX engineer who served as the manager of the NVIDIA Linux Graphics Driver Software until Hardy Doelfel took over in late 2011.

      • A Linux LiveCD To Play With Wayland/Weston

        If you’re sad about Ubuntu delaying their Wayland System Compositor and want to take Wayland/Weston for a spin, there’s another alternative for playing with this next-generation Linux desktop technology.

        For a Wayland-based LiveCD that is designed for showing off Wayland/Weston and related technologies, there is the oddly-named RebeccaBlack OS. The developer of this Linux OS, who says that distribution is named in honor of his favorite celebrity (Rebecca Black), released a new spin this week.

      • Running Wayland: It Works, But A Lot Of Work Remains

        Following the news shared today that Ubuntu’s delayed their Wayland System Compositor adoption from Ubuntu 12.10 to at least Ubuntu 13.04 there was the more positive news that there’s an updated third-party spin of an Ubuntu derivative running Wayland. This article has some more information on that new “RebeccaBlack OS” release along with screenshots that provide a glimpse of where the Wayland adoption is at today.

      • X.Org Server 1.13 Nears: Baking Cookies

        The non-critical bug window for X.Org Server 1.13 is now closed and Keith Packard has announced the release of xorg-server 1.12.99.904.

        The new features, like the driver re-work for PRIME DRI2 offloading and the nuking of XAA and new GLX support, is detailed in X.Org Server 1.13 RC1 Packs In Many Changes.

      • ARM Still Tackling Linux Xen Virtualization Support

        More than a month ago I wrote about ARM working on Linux virtualization support via Xen. This work still hasn’t landed in the mainline Linux kernel, but it continues to move along.

      • Radeon Gallium3D Has Made Much Progress In Two Years
      • Intel Announces OpenGL ES 3.0 Plans For Mesa

        Coming out of SIGGRAPH 2012 is a new branch of Mesa from Intel’s Open-Source Technology Center that’s working on full open-source OpenGL ES 3.0 support for Intel HD hardware.

        This OpenGL ES 3.0 branch of Mesa currently has “pre-alpha quality” support for OpenGL ES 3.0 for Intel HD hardware and it won’t be merged until after the Mesa 8.1 release. However, Intel hopes to have beta OpenGL ES 3.0 support officially ready and in mainline Mesa for Q1’2013.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Tips on Choosing your Linux Desktop Environment

      GNOME and KDE are the top desktop environment choices you come across when you are about to choose a Linux distribution. Choosing between them isn’t much of a pain if you are going straight for Ubuntu, but if you’re a bit picky about your desktop, then knowing a bit more about desktop environments becomes a must. So, what are desktop environments anyway?

      A desktop environment consists mainly of the graphical user interface and a collection of tightly integrated applications blended seamlessly to provide a complete user experience. So, in a desktop environment you’ll most likely find a common set of elements like icons, menus, pointers, panels, desktop widgets, and even wallpapers. Basically, a desktop environment is what you see when you log in to your computer. An operating system on the other hand is the one that lies underneath, helping your computer to boot and manage a bunch of other processes.

    • The naturalness in the evolution of desktop environments

      I’ve been browsing distrowatch.com lately noticing something that is happening for some time now, but maybe surprised me for the first time because it is still happening. What I am talking about is that there are more Linux distributions releasing new versions using Gnome 2.32 than Gnome 3.4!

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • What’s new in Gwenview 2.9?
      • Dolphin immediately useful

        Like many, I read this already famous blog post about the stripped-down Nautilus with growing surprise. I won’t go into what I think it’s wrong with it as others have said enough already. I’d like to focus on the positive: the very first point made.

      • Great News for Qt and KDE ..and a bit of Red Hat!

        What a KDE does in a Gnome blog? Normally it gets FUD, but this time we are going to praise it! I got double hit from KDE yesterday. First by the awesome news that Digia Committed to Thriving Qt Ecosystem and secondly by trying Rebecca Black.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Gnome PackageKit Now Faster, Supports Multiple Parallel Jobs

        Gnome PackageKit, the tool that is used to install packages and apps in most distros like Fedora now supports parallelization. For developers, it means that they can now process several jobs at the same time, while for end users, it means that they can now expect a faster PackageKit.

      • GNOME OS Is Coming

        At the GUADEC conference in Spain, GNOME’s annual conference for developers, some of the core developers have decided to go ahead with a concept they are calling GNOME OS.

        Before you start rolling your eyes, expecting Yet-Another-Linux-Distro, let me reveal that is is slightly more complicated than that.

      • GNOME OS

        In my last post I described how, during this year’s GUADEC, members of the GNOME community came together to plan where the project could go in the next 18 months or so. The slides from Xan and Juanjo’s talk give some of the background to those discussions. We took copious notes during the planning sessions that were held; these will all be available online soon, so you can get a more detailed picture if you want one. In what follows I’ll try to give a bit an overview.

        But first, a clarification. The idea of GNOME OS has been around for a couple of years, and there has been a fair amount of confusion about what it means. Some people seem to have assumed that GNOME OS is an effort to replace distributions, so let me be clear: that is not the case. While the creation of a standalone GNOME OS install does feature as a part of our plans, this is primarily intended as a platform for testing and development. In actual fact, all of the improvements that we hope to make through the GNOME OS initiative will directly improve what the GNOME project is able to offer distributions.

      • GNOME OS is on the way – but mainly for testing and development

        The GNOME project, which is facing heavy criticism over usability issues, is to build a touch-capable ‘GNOME OS’ as a way of improving the overall experience for users and developers

      • Gnome OS to land in 2014

        Developers have revealed they are working on a Gnome OS, potentially extending the reach of the open-source platform to tablets.

        At the moment, Gnome is a desktop environment that sits on top of Linux OSes – but has been ditched by Ubuntu in favour of its own Unity interface.

        At a Gnome conference, developers said they were working on an OS, targeting a release date of March 2014, according to their slides. However, the Gnome OS isn’t meant to replace existing distros, such as Ubuntu or Mint.

      • GNOME OS: a bid to catch up with the big boys
      • A freasy future for GNOME
      • The new GDM, the new Screen Shield and Ubuntu

        This is a quick look to the new Lock (Screen Shield) of Gnome Shell, and the new interface of GDM, which both come to brake more the visual coherence between Gnome and Ubuntu that ships LightDM.

        LightDM or GDM is just a small detail, but it’s not the only one. It’s the File Manager, the File Previewer (aka Sushi), the Scroll bars.. So even if you install GS in Ubuntu, experience will be much different from the Vanilla Gnome. Anyway.

  • Distributions

    • In Search of the Best Linux for Windows Refugees

      “If you want to make the transition easy for Windows users, you have to be talking about KDE,” said Google+ blogger Kevin O’Brien. In fact, “there was even a great video a couple of years ago from ZDNet Australia where they showed people the new KDE and told them it was the new Windows,” he recalled. “Not only did folks believe it, but they said it was a much improved Windows.”

    • Linux Deepin 12.06 review

      Linux Deepin is a distribution derived from Ubuntu Desktop. The latest edition, Linux Deepin 12.06, which is based on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, was released on July 17, That means it was released later than expected, as the version number clearly indicates that the release date should have been in June, not July. But that is a minor issue. Better released late with major bugs quashed, than on time, but bug-ridden.

    • 5 popular Linux distros

      It’s nearly impossible to tell how many people are using any given Linux distribution. Each distro probably has some internal statistics that they can use to judge relative popularity, but tracking how many people have installed a distro or use it regularly is currently not possible. However, we can look at some general trends online to get an idea of a distro’s relative popularity.

    • ROSA Marathon 2012: first-ever usable LXDE distribution

      Some time ago I made a decision not to look at LXDE-based distributions. One of the reasons for me was a lack of usability, because of keyboard layout configuration. I need to type in Russian and English both, which means I need to switch between different layouts quickly and often. None of the LXDE distributions I’ve tried had this option: Debian, Fedora, Knoppix, PCLOS, Porteus, SliTaz, Zorin OS 6 Lite.

    • ROSA Marathon 2012 GNOME Edition final
    • ROSA Marathon 2012 GNOME preview
    • New Releases

      • LinHES R7.4 “rdt”
      • Clonezilla 2.0.0-1
      • Updated Waldorf testing images: 20120806

        The previous CrunchBang 11 “Waldorf” development images have now been replaced by some updated builds. For anyone unaware, these builds are based on Debian Wheezy sources. Wheezy is the current testing branch of Debian and therefore is likely to experience changes, bugs and breakages. These builds are not recommended for anyone who requires a stable system, or is not happy running into occasional breakages.

      • Snowlinux 3 “Crystal” released!

        The team is proud to announce the release of Snowlinux 3 “Crystal”.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • August 2012 issue of The PCLinuxOS Magazine released

        The PCLinuxOS Magazine staff is pleased to announce the release of the August 2012 issue of the PCLinuxOS Magazine. The PCLinuxOS Magazine is a product of the PCLinuxOS community, published by volunteers from the community. The magazine is lead by Paul Arnote, Chief Editor, and Assistant Editor Meemaw. The PCLinuxOS Magazine is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share-Alike 3.0 Unported license, and some rights are reserved.

    • Red Hat Family

      • This Is One Incredible CEO

        The Motley Fool’s readers have spoken, and I have heeded your cries. After months of pointing out CEO gaffes and faux pas, I’ve decided to make it a weekly tradition to also point out corporate leaders who are putting the interests of shareholders and the public first and are generally deserving of praise from investors. For reference, here is last week’s selection.

        This week, I want to take a closer look at Red Hat (NYS: RHT) CEO Jim Whitehurst and show you why a mixture of growth, hiring, and humility makes him a fantastic leader.

      • Scientific Linux 6.3 Review: Simply outstanding

        Yesterday, 8th Aug., Connie Sieh announced the release of Scientific Linux 6.3, an enterprise-class distribution built from source package for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3: “Scientific Linux 6.3 i386/x86_64 is now available.

      • Fedora

        • Moving to Arch Linux from Fedora

          A little over seven weeks has passed since I wrote my thoughts on Fedora 17, and finally, those little paper cuts became too much.

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Japanese Bacon

            When I was at the Community Leadership Summit and OSCON a few weeks back I had the pleasure of meeting Masafumi Ohta who is a passionate Ubuntu user who had flown from Nerima-ku in Japan to the event. Masafumi very generously gave me a print copy of Ubunchu; thanks, Masafumi, for the kindness!

          • Ubuntu App Showdown: 15 Hot Apps to Watch

            Ubuntu App Showdown contest was introduced more than a month ago by Canonical to encourage application development for Ubuntu in a big way. And the initiative is showing results already. More than 150 applications were submitted out of which, 133 has been qualified and made it to the final list. Judges will vote on the apps and will declare the winners very soon. Meanwhile, here’s our list of top 15 apps (in no particular order) from Ubuntu App Showdown contest, which we think are the best of the lot. Read on.

          • 10 Awesome New Ubuntu Apps Developed for the Ubuntu App Showdown
          • Ubuntu may drop Nautilus 3.6 from Quantal!?

            These are really interesting news that come directly from Ubuntu’s Sebastien Bacher in Launchpad Bug Tracker. Sebastian basically says that Ubuntu cannot follow Gnome upstream as Gnome lack to plan their work in advance or communicate enough with Ubuntu about their new features.

          • # Kubuntu Gets KDE Support In Firefox Again
          • Ubuntu 12.10 May Ship With Older, But More Featured, Nautilus

            Over in the development land of Ubuntu 12.10, a new version of the ‘new Nautilus’ has landed – bringing with it yet another feature removal.

          • Ubuntu debates replacing Nautilus file manager

            In a bug report on Launchpad, Ubuntu developer Sebatien Bacher has suggested that Ubuntu might ship Nautilus 3.4 with version 12.10 of the Linux distribution – currently available as a third alpha – instead of the latest upstream version of the file manager. Nautilus 3.6, which is currently in development, would be included in the repositories but not be bundled by default. This would mark a departure from recent practices where the Ubuntu developers had always shipped the latest version of Nautilus with their custom Unity desktop interface.

          • ZaReason UltraLap 430 is the first Linux Ultrabook

            Dell might be preparing to offer its XPS 13 with Ubuntu 12.04 this Fall, but Linux boutique ZaReason has beaten them to the punch by putting the UltraLap 430 up for sale. It’s the first Ultrabook on the market that’s shipping with Linux.

            The $899 base price gets you a decently-specced unit. A 1.8GHz 3rd generation Intel Core i3 processor starts things off, and it’s teamed up with 4GB of DDR3 memory and a 32GB mSATA SSD. The Intel base hardware adds 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and HD 4000 graphics to the mix — as well as a pair of USB 3.0 ports. The UltraLap’s 14.1-inch display offers a native resolution of 1366 x 768, and there’s an HDMI port in case you want to output video to a secondary display.

          • Ubuntu Delays Wayland System Compositor

            Ubuntu 12.10 will not be shipping with a Wayland-based system compositor as was once hoped for, but the experimental system compositor can be enabled from a PPA in a very primitive state.

          • Top 10 Ubuntu App Downloads for July 2012

            Canonical published today, August 3rd, this month’s top 10 app downloads from Ubuntu Software Center. As you can see below, the most appreciated apps are still the games from the Humble Indie Bundle V. Without further ado here they are!

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Bodhi Linux Moves To Faster ARMHF

              Bodhi Linux ARM branch will now move to ARMHF branch.

            • Fuduntu review

              Fuduntu is mentioned in several comments in my blog and that makes me want to try it. I have never used Fuduntu before and at the first glance, I thought it is just a derivative of Ubuntu with Fluxbox ( I thought the name was Fubuntu), but then I checked again and realized it is based on Fedora and the name is Fuduntu. And the perfect time has come, a friend just gave me an old laptop yesterday and I am also having some free time so I decided to download and try the newest version of Fuduntu (2012) that uses kernel 3.4.4.

            • 10 things to do after installing Fuduntu
  • Devices/Embedded

    • Extending Raspberry Pi’s GPIO Interface with Gertboard

      Our favourite little board is determined not to stay away from the news for long. In yet another innovation for Raspberry Pi, the low-cost, credit-card sized hobbyist board, a new add-on interface was announced.

    • Raspberry Pi cases round-up: Eight inventive holders in photos

      The Raspberry Pi mini-computer has taken the tech world by storm. If you’re one of the lucky few to get one, one of the first things you’ll need is a case. Here’s a few to choose from.

    • BeagleBoard cape plug-ins are all the rage

      The BeagleBoard organization recently announced the availability of over 20 new plug-in boards for its ARM-powered computer platform – which runs both Google Android 4.0 and Linux Ubuntu.

      Essentially, the plug-in boards, or “capes” are designed to extend the already formidable (developer) BeagleBoard ecosystem with additional hardware, such as robot motor drivers and sensors that measure location and pressure.

    • Hackberry A10 $60 Developer Board Launches

      If you are looking for something similar to the Raspberry Pi Mini PC, but with a faster processor, extra memory, built in storage and wireless connectivity.

      You might be interested in the new Hackberry A10 Developer Board which is now available to purchase for around $60, and is capable of running a variety of operating systems including Ubuntu, Fedora, and other Linux based distros.

    • Phones

      • Android

        • [Video] Ubuntu For Android Shows Its Power

          Canonical had earlier announced plans to launch Ubuntu in Android based devices. Ubuntu for Android is a new initiative that will allow your high-end phone to work as a full desktop computer. In a video shown below, we can have an idea of what it will actually look like.

        • Could Android Find Success on the Desktop?

          Is Google preparing to do what it was rumored to do for so long, namely bring the Android mobile OS to the desktop? Today’s Android user on a smartphone may scoff at the idea but there are signs that Google might have the desktop in its sights, and it’s also clear that Chrome OS has not been the revolution on laptops or desktops that Google had hoped it woud be. Here are some of the rumblings about the possibility of Android on the desktop.

        • Ubuntu for Android Gets Shown Off and Detailed, We Want This as Soon as Possible

          Up until now, we have only heard rumors and seen still pictures of what Ubuntu running on an Android device will look like. Today however, a video has surfaced of the service up and running and it is exciting to see. It was promised that Ubuntu for Android “transforms your high-end phone into your productive desktop, whenever you need it.” While you might be skeptical at that claim, after watching the video your opinion might change.

        • Has functionality finally caught up with the Android spec race?

          Samsung has woken up to context: the Galaxy Note 10.1 has a fast quadcore processor and twice as much memory as most rivals, but listen to Samsung’s pitch and you’d hardly know it. Instead of the usual breathless glee over hardware and technical abilities, the Note 10.1 tells you exactly what it can do with all that’s under the hood. Namely, bring the stylus back in style, and create a compellingly different approach to tableteering, distinct to what Apple’s iPad offers.

        • Android races past Apple in smartphone market share
      • Ballnux

Free Software/Open Source

  • OSI Signs Declaration of Internet Freedom

    We just received confirmation that OSI’s request to be added as a signatory to the Declaration of Internet Freedom has been accepted. We endorse this Declaration and encourage authorities worldwide to embrace it and implement regulations protecting the principles it espouses.

  • Can open source be democratic?

    Open source has created a new way of mobilising communities but it has also allowed a democratic deficit to open up between developers and users. Glyn Moody offers his take on this gap and how it is being slowly closed.

  • Some Prominent Open Source Forks

    Penguinistas used to worry about the dreaded fork, especially of Linux. “What if Linux forks and becomes like Unix?” was a question often being posed in the open source media. Linus Torvalds would do his best to put those fears to rest, explaining that under the GPL forks are usually to be welcomed.

    He was of the opinion that if a fork improves a product and is liked by the users, those changes will almost certainly be rolled back into the originating application. If not, and the fork is indeed a marked improvement on the original, then the fork becomes the standard bearer at the expense of the original application.

  • Open-source Movements Butt Heads Over Logo

    A gear logo proposed to represent and easily identify open-source hardware has caught the eyes of the The Open Source Initiative, which believes the logo infringes its trademark.

    The gear logo is backed by the Open Source Hardware Association (OSHWA), which was formally established earlier this year to promote hardware innovation and unite the fragmented community of hackers and do-it-yourselfers. The gear mark is now being increasingly used on boards and circuits to indicate that the hardware is open-source and designs can be openly shared and modified.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • VMware Virtualization With OpenGL Still Smacks Oracle VirtualBox

      Earlier this year I said VMware’s virtual GPU driver was running fast for Linux — in comparison to Oracle’s VM VirtualBox 3D guest acceleration support. This continues to be the case with VMware’s OpenGL stack leading the way with superior support and performance. Recently I ran some desktop virtualization tests under VMware Fusion 4.1.3 and Oracle VM VirtualBox 4.1.18 from the Retina MacBook Pro with OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion host. Even with the OS X host, VMware’s 3D support exposed to the Ubuntu 12.04 LTS virtualized guest was much faster.

    • VMware Fusion Stuns VirtualBox In CPU Tests

      Aside from VMware virtualization smacking Oracle VirtualBox when it comes to the OpenGL support that’s passed through to VM guests, VMware Fusion 4 also does a nice job at outperforming VirtualBox when it comes to computational-focused workloads.

  • Funding

  • Project Releases

Leftovers

  • Security

  • Finance

    • An open infrastructure could curb high-frequency trading disasters

      In yesterday’s New York Times, Ellen Ullman criticized the SEC’s suggestion that mandated software testing could prevent automated-trading catastrophes like the one that shook the market and nearly bankrupted Knight Capital at the beginning of this month. More testing won’t work, according to Ullman, for a few reasons. First, computer systems are too complex to ever “fully test,” because they comprise multiple software and hardware subsystems, some proprietary, others (like routers) containing “inaccessible” embedded code. Second, all code contains bugs, and because bugs can be caused by interactions between modules and even by attempts to fix other bugs, no code will ever be completely bug-free. And finally, it is too difficult to delineate insignificant changes to the software from those that really require testing.

    • The Post-Work Economy

      And we’re sure not going to let the Luddites have their way, so we better get used to a society with an ever-smaller number of available jobs.

      * Remember bank tellers? ATMs do most of the work they used to do.
      * Remember paper maps? GPSs fill that gap now.
      * Newspapers? Magazines? Paper books? Electronic media is eating them all.
      * Records and CDs? I don’t have to tell you what happened to those, do I?
      * Media production in general? Technology does 90% of that now.
      * When’s the last time you dropped off a roll of film to be developed?
      * Office jobs? Sure, they’re still there in a FIRE economy. But each office gets more done with fewer heads.
      * Phone operators? Radio station DJs? Most of that’s automated now.
      * Fewer cops on the streets? Well, good thing we have those red-light automatic-ticket machines at every intersection, isn’t it?

    • ‘I’m sick to my stomach’: anger grows in Illinois at Bain’s latest outsourcing plan

      The Sensata plant in Freeport is profitable and competitive, but its majority owner, Bain Capital, has decided to ship jobs to China – and forced workers to train their overseas replacements

    • Goldman Sachs Leads Split With Obama, as GE Jilts Him Too

      Goldman Sachs Group (GS) employees have changed to red from blue.

      Four years ago, employees of New York-based Goldman gave three-fourths of their campaign donations to Democratic candidates and committees, including presidential nominee Barack Obama. This time, they’re showering 70 percent of their contributions on Republicans.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • “Americans for Job Security” Targets WI GOP Senate Race, from the Shadows

      A mysterious dark money group that has received Koch-connected funding called “Americans for Job Security” has dropped $689,000 on ads in Wisconsin attacking GOP Senate candidate (and billionaire hedge fund manager) Eric Hovde. It is the first major ad buy in the 2012 election cycle from the secretly-funded group, which is officially registered as a 501(c)(6) nonprofit “trade association” like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce or PhRMA, but does not appear to advance the interests of any particular industry or trade.

    • Conservative School Choice Group Spends Big Supporting Pro-School Choice Democrats

      The American Federation for Children Action Fund Inc., a pro-school privatization group bankrolled by conservative financiers, has spent more than $113,000 supporting five Milwaukee Democrats running for State Assembly and Senate, who are facing primaries on August 14.

  • Civil Rights

    • What makes our NDAA lawsuit a struggle to save the US constitution

      I am one of the lead plaintiffs in the civil lawsuit against the National Defense Authorization Act, which gives the president the power to hold any US citizen anywhere for as long as he wants, without charge or trial.

      In a May hearing, Judge Katherine Forrest issued an injunction against it; this week, in a final hearing in New York City, US government lawyers asserted even more extreme powers – the right to disregard entirely the judge and the law. On Monday 6 August, Obama’s lawyers filed an appeal to the injunction – a profoundly important development that, as of this writing, has been scarcely reported.

  • DRM

    • UK Readers Can Now Purchase DRM-Free Books From Tor UK

      As of today, Tor UK, Pan Macmillan’s science fiction and fantasy imprint, has made its ebooks DRM-free and available to purchase from the Tor UK Ebookstore. In a move announced earlier this year, Tor UK has joined sister company Tor Books in New York in removing Digital Rights Management from all its titles so that once you purchase a Tor UK book, you can download it as many times as you like, on as many ereaders as you like.

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  3. Microsoft 'Loving' GNU/Linux and Other Corporate Media Fiction

    Microsoft has bullied or cleverly bribed enough technology-centric media sites to have them characterise Microsoft as a friend of Free/Open Source software (FOSS) that also "loves Linux"



  4. India May be Taking Bill Gates to Court for Misusing His So-called 'Charity' to Conduct Clinical Trials Without Consent on Behalf of Companies He Invests in

    Bill Gates may finally be pulled into the courtroom again, having been identified for large-scale abuses that he commits in the name of profit (not "charity")



  5. The Problems With Legal Workarounds, Patent Scope, and Expansion of Patent Trolls to the East

    Patent trolls are in the news again and it's rather important, albeit for various different reasons, more relevant than the ones covered here in the past



  6. Links 20/10/2014: Cloudera and Red Hat, Debian 7.7, and Vivid Vervet

    Links for the day



  7. Links 20/10/2014: 10 Years Since First Ubuntu Release

    Links for the day



  8. How Patent Lawyers Analyze Alice v. CLS Bank

    Breaking down a patent lawyer's analysis of a Supreme Court's decision that seemingly invalidated hundreds of thousands of software patents



  9. Is It Google's Turn to Head the USPTO Corporation?

    The industry-led USPTO continues to be coordinated by some of its biggest clients, despite issues associated with conflicting interests



  10. The EPO's Public Relations Disaster Amid Distrust From Within (and EPO Communications Chief Leaves): Part VII

    Amid unrest and suspicion of misconduct in the EPO's management (ongoing for months if not years), Transparency International steps in, but the EPO's management completely ignores Transparency International, refusing to collaborate; the PR chief of the EPO is apparently being pushed out in the mean time



  11. Links 18/10/2014: Debian Plans for Init Systems, Tails 1.2

    Links for the day



  12. Links 18/10/2014: New ELive, Android Expansion

    Links for the day



  13. Another Fresh Blow to Software Patents (and With Them Patent Trolls)

    Another new development shows that more burden of proof is to be put on the litigant, thus discouraging the most infamous serial patent aggressors and reducing the incentive to settle with a payment out of court



  14. Links 16/10/2014: New Android, SSL 3.0 Flaw

    Links for the day



  15. How the Corporate Press Deceives and Sells Microsoft Agenda

    Various new examples of media propaganda that distorts or makes up the facts (bias/lies by omission/selection) and where this is all coming from



  16. Vista 10 is Still Vapourware, But We Already Know It Will Increase Surveillance on Its Users and Contain Malicious Back Doors

    The villainous company which makes insecure-by-design operating systems will continue to do so, but in the mean time the corporate press covers only bugs in FOSS, not back doors in proprietary software



  17. Links 15/10/2014: KDE Plasma 5.1 is Out, GOG Reaches 100-Title Mark

    Links for the day



  18. With .NET Foundation Affiliation Xamarin is Another Step Closer to Being Absorbed by Microsoft

    Xamarin is not even trying to pretend that separation exists between Microsoft and its work; yet another collaboration is announced



  19. The EPO's Protection Triangle of Battistelli, Kongstad, and Topić: Part VI

    Jesper Kongstad, Benoît Battistelli, and Zeljko Topić are uncomfortably close personally and professionally, so suspicions arise that nepotism and protectionism play a negative role that negatively affects the European public



  20. Corporate Media Confirms the Demise of Software Patents in the United States; Will India and Europe Follow?

    It has become increasingly official that software patents are being weakened in the United States' USPTO as well as the courts; will software leaders such as India and Europe stop trying to imitate the old USPTO?



  21. Links 14/10/2014: CAINE 6, New RHEL, Dronecode

    Links for the day



  22. Microsoft's Disdain for Women Steals the Show at a Women's Event

    Steve Ballmer's successor, Satya Nadella, is still too tactless to lie to the audience, having been given --through subversive means -- a platform at a conference that should have shunned Microsoft, a famously misogynistic company



  23. SCOTUS May Soon Put an End to the 'Copyrights on APIs' Question While Proprietary Giants Continue to Harass Android/Linux in Every Way Conceivable

    Google takes its fight over API freedom to the Supreme Court in the Unites States and it also takes that longstanding patent harassment from the Microsoft- and Apple-backed troll (Rockstar) out of East Texas



  24. Patent Lawsuits Almost Halved After SCOTUS Ruling on 'Abstract' Software Patents

    The barrier for acceptance of software patent applications is raised in the United States and patent lawsuits, many of which involve software these days, are down very sharply, based on new figures from Lex Machina



  25. Links 13/10/2014: ChromeOS and EXT, Debian Resists Systemd Domination

    Links for the day



  26. Links 12/10/2014: Blackphone Tablet, Sony's Firefox OS Port

    Links for the day



  27. Links 9/10/2014: Free Software in Germany, Lenovo Tablets With Android

    Links for the day



  28. Links 8/10/2014: A Lot of Linux+AMD News, New ROSA Desktop Is Out

    Links for the day



  29. Lawyers' Propaganda About Software Patents and a New AstroTurf Entity Called Innovation Alliance

    Patent propaganda and deception from patent lawyers (among other parasites such as patent trolls) continues to flood the Web, intersecting with reports that prove them totally wrong



  30. How Microsoft Handles Disasters: Grace Hopper Conference Has Been Infiltrated by "Microsoft Disaster Response"

    Free/Open Source software (FOSS) must be a disaster to Microsoft's bottom line because Microsoft is sending "Microsoft Disaster Response" to infiltrate and disrupt a conference about women in FOSS


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