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11.23.12

Links 23/11/2012: Linux Mint 14 Released & Reviewed, Replicant 4.0

Posted in News Roundup at 10:50 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • The history of Linux: how time has shaped the penguin
  • The Linux’s perception of my neighbours

    I’ve always presented myself as a Linux geek to my neighbours and it has been nice seeing how the Linux word evolved (with funny and surprising quotes) during the past ten years in their minds. A friend of mine (Aretha Battistutta) made a little comic strip out of the topic and the result is simply amazing.

  • Desktop

  • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Podcast Season 4 Episode 22

      In this episode: Linux Mint 14 has been released. Planet KDE does awesome work. There’s an OpenStreetMap map-a-thon. Australia’s government is TLD-shy. Red Hat invests in MongoDB, there may be life on Mars, Apple will have to reveal how much HTC is paying it, and the UEFI saga is turning nasty. Hear our non-audio related discoveries, and your own brains and opinions in the Open Ballot.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • KDE 4.10 Beta 1 Released

        The KDE project has announced the release of first beta for its renewed Workspaces, Applications, and Development Platform 4.10.

        Post this release the team will now focus on bug fixing and further polishing new and old functionality as the API, dependency and feature freezes is already in place.

        So, what’s new in KDE SC 4.10?
        With this release KDE is introducing a brand new Screen Locker, a new screen locking mechanism, which is based on QtQuick brings and offers more flexibility and security to Plasma Desktop. It also introduces a new print manager which makes improves setting up of printers and monitoring jobs.

      • Archiving on Kmail
      • Let’s hear it for Konqueror

        My browser of choice on the desktop has been Firefox for many years. Firefox uses the Gecko rendering engine. As a backup Web browser I use Konqueror but configured to use WebKit, rather than KHTML, as the rendering engine. I’ve tried Chromium, Opera, Midori, rekonq, SeaMonkey and a bunch of others, but always found them lacking in some way in comparison to Firefox (I find Opera Mobile better than Firefox for Android on my mobile phone, though).

    • GNOME Desktop

      • GNOME 3 Fallback Makes a Comeback, of Sorts

        It was recently announced that GNOME 3.8 would not be including the GNOME 2 fallback mode. This had a lot of folks a bit concerned. Apparently it was used more than GNOME developers figured. Not wanting to go backwards, Matthias Clasen has thought of a way that may pacify users of the departing fallback mode.

        Clasen posted to a GNOME mailing list today that he thinks using some community extensions to bring back GNOME 2-like features is the answer. He said exactly, “we have a pretty awesome extension mechanism in gnome-shell (extensions.gnome.org), and there are a ton of extensions out there which allow users to bring back many of the ‘classic’ UX elements.”

      • GNOME Shell to support a “classic” mode
      • GNOME Proves It Can Listen

        I’m referring, of course, to Matthias Clasen’s announcement that, having dropped fallback mode, GNOME will support a core of extensions that will recreate the GNOME 2 interface.

        This announcement marks a major reversal of GNOME’s policy. For the past two years, the project has officially defended the radical redesign introduced by GNOME 3, making few — if any — acknowledgments of users’ complaints.

        In fact, eighteen months ago, influential members of GNOME were arguing against encouraging extensions for GNOME Shell at all. For instance, Allan Day, one of the leading designers of the GNOME 3, wrote in a discussion on the gnome-shell list:

      • GNOME Forums are coming!

        I can’t say much more than whats in the title just yet, but I thought I’d give everyone a heads up – forums for GNOME users, developers, etc are in the works! Hopefully soon we’ll be building a community of users, contributors and other interested folks to make GNOME better than ever! Stay tuned!

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Jolla’s Sailfish Rises From MeeGo’s Ashes As Company Signs First Carrier Deal With DNA

        Jolla – the startup built by the team behind the smartphone OS that Nokia abandoned in favor of Windows Phone — revealed its first big smartphone customer deal today, the mobile operator DNA of Finland. Jolla also gave a first look at the UI of Sailfish, the mobile operating system they’ve created from the remnants of Nokia’s MeeGo project, and released an SDK.

      • Android

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Best 7-inch tablets for Black Friday buyers

        I prefer the smaller tablets because I find them to simply fit me better. For me, tablets are primarily for consuming data. I watch videos on them, I read books on them, I use them for Web-browsing, and I use them for e-mail. If you want to use a tablet for a work, you really want a full-sized tablet such as the iPad 4, Nexus 10, or a Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1. Me? I’ll use a laptop. For sheer enjoyment though give me a mini-tablet any day of the week.

        Let’s get the bad news out of the way first. No one is really offering “deals” on any of the top 7″ tablets except for the Amazon Kindle Fire HD. For all the rest, expect to pay full price. That said, you should look for bargains on such accessories as the microSD cards for more storage and cases.

      • Nook HD and HD+ Now on Sale in the UK

        The Nook HD and the HD+ can now be brought in the UK with prices starting at 159 English pounds. People who have pre-ordered can expect theirs any day now through the post.

      • Kobo Joins In With Black Friday

Free Software/Open Source

  • Saying thanks to the open source community
  • Open source developers Catalyst and Egressive combine forces

    Catalyst IT has taken over fellow open source developer, Christchurch-based Egressive.

    Egressive will formally become Catalyst’s South Island branch from the end of this month (November).

    The takeover is friendly, says Egressive director Dave Lane. “In fact it would be fair to say we initiated the process.” The company had grown its business to the point where its small staff had as much work as they could handle, he says, and it was limited by its location.

  • DreamWorks makes ‘Rise of the Guardians’ special effects tool open source

    Yesterday DreamWorks released its latest animated feature with the holiday-themed Rise of the Guardians. But for animators who watch the film and wish they could do something similar, there’s good news — one of the tools used on the project is free and open source. Called OpenVDB, the tool is used to create volumetric 3D effects like smoke, and DreamWorks previously used it on both Puss in Boots and Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted. The studio’s hope is that by making OpenVDB free, it will eventually become an industry standard. “That ends up benefiting us,” DreamWorks’ David Prescott told the Wall Street Journal.

  • Dreamworks open sources animation software
  • Open Source Virtualization
  • Events

  • SaaS

  • Databases

    • Teaching students to work on state of the art NoSQL databases

      In a recent post, I introduced an initiative, along with Dima Kassab, for teaching open source NoSQL databases. We collaborated to prepare course materials for three NoSQL databases to 22 students at the Informatics Department of SUNY Albany, and we made all those material available under a Creative Commons by Attribution License.

  • Funding

  • BSD

    • Upstream vendors can harm small projects: OpenBSD dev

      A senior OpenBSD developer has complained on a mailing list that upstream vendors of free and open source software are adding in changes without any thought of whether downstream users could adapt to the change.

  • Public Services/Government

    • Linux brings over €10 million savings for Munich

      Over €10 million (approximately £8 million or $12.8 million) has been saved by the city of Munich, thanks to its development and use of the city’s own Linux platform. The calculation of savings follows a question by the city council’s independent Free Voters (Freie Wähler) group, which led to Munich’s municipal LiMux project presenting a comparative budget calculation at the meeting of the city council’s IT committee on Wednesday. The calculation compares the current overall cost of the LiMux migration with that of two technologically equivalent Windows scenarios: Windows with Microsoft Office and Windows with OpenOffice. Reportedly, savings amount to over €10 million.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Make Magazine editors demonstrate 21st century collaboration

      Collaboration is changing. Gone are the days of excuses for not collaborating, like “we work better in person,” or “we’re in different time zones.” Technology makes it easy to work together. It’s simple and it’s free (assuming you have a computer, webcam, and internet connection).

      The editors of Make Magazine are a good example of 21st century collaboration. They recently held their first public “editor hangout” using Google Hangout. The Make editors are scattered across the country, yet this Google Hangout brings all of them together. Google Hangouts are really cool because you can see all of the members at the bottom, and the person speaking is automatically highlighted in a larger video screen.

    • Open Access/Content

      • Dr. Fields At The Huffington Post Is Wrong On Open Access

        Dr. Douglas Fields penned an article at Huffington Post on open access. There are so many factual errors, false analogies and misleading statements in this article, that I need to highlight just few of the ‘wrongest’ statements

    • Open Hardware

  • Programming

    • Google announces open source contest for students

      Did you know how many times you use some open source software in a day? No clue? Each time you access a Web site, use an app (application) or play a game, you use one or more open source software.

      How about creating one? Google, the digital media and search engine company, has announced Google Code-in contest for students in the age group of 13 and 17 years.

      Beginning November 26, contests can work on 10 different open source organisations, taking part in certain online tasks to win prizes.

Leftovers

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