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05.03.13

Proprietary Software Companies Cannot Speak on Behalf of FOSS, So Why Groom and Cite Them?

Posted in Deception, Free/Libre Software at 3:14 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: The process of voice robbing as it is seen in recent news articles where data on FOSS is obtained through its shrewd foes (disguised as “pro-FOSS”)

Katherine Noyes calls it “Tale of Two Surveys”, we call it a tale of propaganda from two companies that sell fear, or a so-called study set from the posers of FOSS (both from proprietary software companies), monetising fear of FOSS. The company called Univa has nothing to do with FOSS and Mac Asay identifies flaws in the ‘study’ it produced:

The first comes from Univa, a data center automation company that also offers an open-source version of its Grid Engine product. Univa found that while 76% of enterprises surveyed are using open source, a full 75% experience problems running it in mission-critical workloads.

Nonsense. It sounds like it, and it is. Meanwhile, to give another timely exhibit, ZDNet found a way to say 14 negative things about FOSS, pretending that there is balance in the article.

Finally, be sure to check who is funded by whom. Be careful when articles cite Black Duck as authority for principal talking point. They are feeding and grooming FOSS-hostile circles with money leading back to Microsoft (Microsoft partnerships and self-serving Microsoft-grooming press releases).

Bill Gates — Not Just Microsoft — Stole Millions From Irish Taxpayers, US Taxpayers Still Robbed by Corruption of Microsoft Moles

Posted in Bill Gates, Finance, Microsoft at 2:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Capitol

Summary: A look at the outrageous government action (infiltrated to varying degrees by Microsoft executives) which passes vast amount of taxpayers’ money/entitlement to Microsoft and Bill Gates

THE world is controlled by oligarchs who pay little or no tax and at the same time tax almost everyone else, usually by covert means. A reader wrote to tell us that the “Irish bailed out Bill Gates!”

He cites an article about Gates’ tax-exempt investment apparatus (Gates Foundation) and notes that not only Microsoft gets extraordinary benefits in Ireland; Bill Gates got a bailout for his investment:

Bill Gates was bondholder in bailed-out Irish zombie banks

Billionaire held €27m in bonds here at end of 2006, including at Anglo and Irish Nationwide

[...]

Gates was a bondholder in Anglo Irish Bank, Irish Nationwide Building Society, Bank of Ireland and Allied Irish Bank, according to filings seen by the Sunday Independent. The filings detail investments held by Gates’ Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

The identities of wealthy bondholders in the Irish banks, bailed out in most cases by Irish citizens, have never been revealed fully. Billionaire Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich emerged as a bondholder in Irish Nationwide after his investment vehicle Millhouse was involved in a UK lawsuit in which it tried to extract full payment for its bonds in the building society as part of a tender offer. Abramovich and his partners lost, but many other bondholders were repaid in full despite backing bust banks. German and French banks were the largest holders of Irish bank bonds.

But wait, it gets worse. In the US too Gates and Microsoft enjoy special treatment that exempts them from tax. How? They put their own cronies in key positions in government. A reader who showed it to us called it “a nasty threat to national sovereignty starting at the state level. First Nokia, now Washington state. “former” my ass” (sorry for the language).

The Gates-funded Seattle Times [1, 2] and Microsoft’s booster in the publication would go too soft on this matter by calling it anything less than corruption:

What happens when you put Microsoft managers in charge of the state budget

For the first time in state history, the Washington state budget is being written by Microsofties, with company alums chairing both budget committees, writes editorial columnist Sharon Pian Chan.

So Seattle Times Realizes Microsoft’s Running the Legislature, as one site put it. What took the Gates-bribed Seattle Times so long to show this? Reifman kept pressuring them in an effective awareness campaign, usually in his blog where he now marks “The Third Anniversary of Washington State’s Big Tax Gift to Microsoft” (and still not enough press response to this fiasco).

Let’s hope that more sites get out there the message that Microsoft is still dependent on corruption. This needs to stop.

Bill Gates and Microsoft Collude with Governments to Indoctrinate Children, Make it Obligatory for All

Posted in Asia, Bill Gates, Microsoft at 2:39 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Reichstag

Summary: Yet more depressing stories about government officials kowtowing to Gates and his monomaniacal gang

LAST month we chastised AICTE for its latest (not the first [1, 2]) sale of Indian children to the foreign abusive monopolist, Microsoft, whose criminal activity is unique and truly deserving of a boycott. The Indian Express has an article about it and it is titled “Against freedom” [via Atul Jha]

“Why the AICTE’s decision to partner with Microsoft is unimaginative” is the summary and it frames the situation as follows: “The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has become Microsoft’s biggest customer for cloud services. By June 30, students and teachers at 11,500 technical institutions will be locked down to Microsoft’s online productivity applications and storage. Cloud services reduce the cost of computing and increase reliability, so this is a good route to go. But a better fork in the same road could have been taken. What would it have cost to develop a free and open source cloud? Or to catch the interest of free and open source software providers who already offer such services to large populations? Even if big brands are in favour, Microsoft has competition which may have been more open.

“Comparisons between proprietary and free and open systems usually focus on the cost advantage — free means free to use. It is a compelling argument for poorer countries that face the challenge of educating, skilling and connecting large populations very rapidly. But the real, long-term advantages lie in the alternative meanings of free — free to play with, free to change, free to reprogramme, free to apply to unintended purposes. And most importantly, free to learn from and free to share. When the users of a system have technical interests, the potential gains from these flavours of freedom are immense. Instead of being passive users of a locked system, they would be encouraged to be curious, to tinker with the very tools they use and innovate ways to adapt them to their needs — or to future needs. The cloud itself could be adapted. And users would have access to at least 40,000 software packages to use, study or get involved in developing.”

It has long been the ambition of Microsoft to use state mandates to indoctrinate populations at taxpayers’ expense (passing cost to leverage tax). Bill Gates publicly said, “they’ll get sort of addicted, and then we’ll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade.”

Right now, using the Gates Foundation, Gates seeks total control of education, going far further than just IT.

Toby showed me this new report which he says is about “Pro-Bill Gates propaganda is part of mandatory Washington State tests for grades 3-8… How predictable”

Here is what the post says:

In a 3rd grade student workbook for MSP Reading Assessment preparation, which is a Washington State mandated test for grades 3 through 8, a parent found this question:

Dora Taylor sums up with: “Propaganda fed to our children? Gates and his foundation are starting to feel the heat of controversy over his ideas of how public education should be managed as well as his investments in Monsanto. a company that produces GMO seeds. This pushback is happening in his own backyard and around the world.”

As we shall show in a later post, Microsoft veterans now directly manage many of the public policies in this state. The Monsanto agenda is also being promoted in Washington universities in particular with funds from Gates, a Monsanto shareholder and part-time lobbyist. It’s a nice way for the food monopoly to pass a bribe to academics while making it look like charity.

India, one of the main victims of Monsanto (high suicide rates due to Monsanto-induced debt and record yield without GMO dependence), should reject this cult of monopolies and choose freedom to assure a promising future for the next generation.

Links 3/5/2013: Ubuntu 13.04 Release, Jolla Has New Management, News Catchup

Posted in News Roundup at 10:11 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Windows 8 vs Mac OS X vs Ubuntu Linux vs Chrome OS
  • The Linux Setup – Katherine Noyes, Journalist

    I currently run Fuduntu Linux on my main desktop PC. Until just recently I dual-booted Ubuntu and Windows 7, but I finally wiped Windows (hadn’t actually needed it for a long time) and installed Fuduntu, which came really highly recommended. I’m loving it so far. Meanwhile I also have a Samsung Chromebook and an Android phone. We have a bunch of other laptops in my family, but my 12-year-old son is constantly installing new distros on them (he got the Linux Diversity collection for Christmas), so I couldn’t tell you what’s on them at the moment. ;)

  • Will there ever be a perfect operating system?
  • Linux saved my life

    A couple of years into my IT studies and I came across Ubuntu 6, tried it and immediately got hooked. I tried many flavours of Linux and at some stage sported over 10 partitions on my laptop but finally settled back to Ubuntu Linux.

  • High Court organizes ‘’Ubuntu Linux Awareness cum Training Programme under Change Management” for Judicial Officers

    On the instructions of e-court committee Supreme Court of India and the Chief Justice, Mr. M. M Kumar and Mr. Justice Mansoor Ahmad Mir, Judge Incharge e-Court Committee, High Court of Jammu & Kashmir, the continued training on “Ubuntu Linux Awareness Cum Training Programme under Change Management” for the Judicial Officers of Jammu and Samba districts was held on April 28, 2013 at J&K State Judicial Academy,

  • The Linux Setup – John Browning, Engadget

    John Browning. I’m a systems programmer/engineer for a privately held software company that makes statistical software. I also contribute to Engadget.com in my spare time. At my day job I manage high performance clusters/grids running RedHat Enterprise Linux. I’m responsible for creating a lot of tooling and automation, mostly in Perl. I get to invent cool new ways of doing stuff. I’ve been playing with Conary as of late. I’ve been using Linux since I was a tween.

  • Linux? What’s That?? — Soon No more

    Today, my mother showed me an article she read in a local newspaper. It was about Linux, free software, and how students from a private university (probably the biggest private university here) were using FLOSS.

    The article mentioned the benefits of FLOSS in educational contexts and how those students were using GIMP, LibreOffice, and Linux, of course.

  • Server

    • Linux on mainframes used more widely than you might think

      Linux tends to be associated with x86 hardware in a business context, but some well-known companies are running it on mainframes.

      “All of the large banks are using it [Linux on IBM System z], but don’t want to talk about it,” CA Technologies distinguished engineer Scott Fagen told iTWire.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Leaving out Linux

      I’ve often criticized Canonical and Ubuntu. In fact, I’ve criticized them often enough that some people are convinced that I have a grudge against them. But there’s one point on which I’ll defend them: their decision to minimize the use of the word “Linux” on their website and in other public communications.

      This policy is not new, but it is periodically rediscovered by various members of the free and open source software (FOSS) community. It rarely fails to provoke outrage. Is Ubuntu pretending it isn’t dependent on Debian and several dozen other upstream projects? The rediscovers ask. Is Canonical trying to claim credit for all the work of others that goes into Ubuntu?

    • Jim Zemlin at TEDx: What We’ve Learned from Linus Torvalds

      Linux Foundation Executive Director Jim Zemlin is likely one of a handful of people in the world who has had a front row seat to the largest collaborative development effort in the history of computing, Linux. He understands that speed of innovation and quality of software development is dictated by forward thinkers who are working in collaboration.

      That is why he was recently invited to speak at TEDx about what the technology industry has learned from Linux, and specifically its creator Linus Torvalds, and how some of those lessons can be applied to a variety of efforts and projects across geographies and disciplines.

    • The Good & Bad Of Btrfs In A Production World

      A web hosting company has publicly shared their thoughts on the Btrfs file-system for Linux. While often discussed as the next-generation Linux file-system, Btrfs isn’t fully baked for use in a production world quite yet.

      Anchor, an Australian web-hosting company, shared their findings after doing extensive research and testing of Btrfs. Overall, the Btrfs experience was “very positive” but they ran into regular issues with hung tasks during snapshotting, a bug causing CPU soft lock-ups, problems when filling up a Btrfs file-system, and some other shortcomings.

    • Automotive Grade Linux

      The Automotive Grade Linux workgroup aims to get more open source technology in vehicles

    • Boosting Linux Power Efficiency with Kernel Scheduler Updates

      From data centers to embedded sensors, energy use is one of the toughest issues facing computing. The Linux kernel community has already made great progress in boosting energy efficiency, but there’s still more work to be done to optimize Linux systems, with one area of focus on power-aware scheduling.

      LWN editor Jon Corbet presented an overview of the issues and potential solutions for improving power management with the kernel scheduler in his Linux kernel weather forecast keynote last week at Collaboration Summit in San Francisco. And breakout session presentations by Preeti Murthy, a software engineer at IBM, and Morten Rasmussen, who works on the power management team at ARM, went into further detail on the kernel changes. All three presentations are available on YouTube and embedded here for your convenience.

    • What’s new in Linux 3.9

      The Linux kernel is finally able to use SSDs as hard-disk cache. Changes to the network subsystem promise to improve the way server jobs are distributed across multiple processor cores. Linux 3.9 also includes drivers for new AMD graphics chips and soon-expected Wi-Fi components from Intel.

    • Graphics Stack

      • Wayland Gets Flavored With Weston SPICE Back-End

        The latest back-end to be published for Wayland’s Weston compositor is for Red Hat’s SPICE.

        This new Weston back-end supports SPICE (Simple Protocol for Independent Computing Environments) remote rendering protocol as used by Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization on the desktop. There’s been a lot of SPICE driver activity as of late with a QXL KMS driver and talk of a potential Gallium3D wrapper driver. This new driver though isn’t out of Red Hat.

      • First X.Org Server 1.15 Snapshot Released

        Keith Packard has announced the release of xorg-server 1.14.99.1, the first X.Org Server 1.15 development snapshot ahead of the official release in the second half of 2013.

    • Benchmarks

      • Nouveau vs. NVIDIA Linux Comparison Shows Shortcomings

        One week after delivering updated Radeon Gallium3D vs. AMD Catalyst benchmarks on Ubuntu Linux, we have to share this morning similar results for the open-source and reverse-engineered “Nouveau” Linux graphics driver compared to the proprietary NVIDIA Linux graphics driver. While the Nouveau driver has come a long way and does support the latest Fermi and Kepler GPUs, it’s not without its share of shortcomings. Eleven NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards were used in this latest Phoronix comparison.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • News in kdepim 4.11: Scam detection

        So I decided to implement it.
        The phishing used several method that KMail try to detect…

      • The History on Wayland Support inside KWin

        Ever since a certain free software company decided to no longer be part of the larger ecosystem, I have seen lots of strange news postings whenever one of the KDE workspace developers mentioned the word “Wayland”. Very often it goes in the direction of “KDE is now also going on Wayland”. Every time I read something like that, I’m really surprised.

      • Jos Poortvliet talks about KlyDE [Interview]

        KlyDE, a light weight KDE experience was announced recently, there is a lot to know about this new project. We reached out to Jos Poortvliet, openSUSE community manager and one of the core team members of the KlyDE project to understand more about this project. Read on…

      • Plasma Pow-wow Produces Detailed Plans for Workspace Convergence

        Last week, members of the Plasma team met in Nürnberg, Germany to discuss open questions on the road to Plasma Workspaces 2. The meeting was kindly hosted by SUSE and supported by the KDE e.V.. For the Plasma team, the meeting came at a perfect point in time: porting of Plasma to a new graphics has commenced, is in fact well under way, and has raised some questions that are best discussed in a high-bandwidth setting in person.

      • The future of KDE: Wayland, Qt 5, uniform Plasma shell

        The road to Plasma Workspaces 2 has been laid out as the Plasma developers recently met in Nuremberg, Germany, to discuss their open issues around future developments. A new version of the KDE desktop will be based on version 5 of the KDE platform and on Qt 5, writes KDE developer Sebastian Kügler. It will be designed to run on X11 as well as on Wayland. With Wayland, KWin will be used as the compositor.

      • Dear KDE Community!

        Dear KDE Community,

        meet the mailing list where you can now talk about non-technical topics relevant to our community: kde-community. From a debate about our next conference to discussing our collaboration with other organizations and our goals as KDE community, this list is for anything which does not fit on the KDE development lists.

      • Good bye Notifications

        When I arrived at Tokamak 6 last week Alex was studying D-Bus communication between various applications. Before I had a chance to really sit down he complained about KWin talking to kded whenever for example a window got moved. This didn’t make much sense, so we had a look at it.

        As it turned out that was KWin sending out notifications. Which immediately raised the question of why? Why would a user want a notification that he started/finished moving a window? After all it’s an action the user triggered. What should be done with the notification? Show a message? “You successfully moved a window!”, yes thank you I can see that on the screen. Play an annoying sound? Pling! Hopefully not.

        Looking at what KNotify supports only logging to file or running a script make sense in response to the notifications emitted by KWin. But for logging to file it’s rather questionable why one would want that and why one would do that from inside a window manager. So what remains is running a script – fair enough that can be useful.

      • KDE is the most welcoming and warm community, says Krita maintainer Boudewijn Rempt

        KO GmbH, a Germany firm, has announced the commercial support for Krita, one of the commercial-grade sketching application. KO GmbH, the Magdeburg based company, was co-founded by Krita maintainer Boudewijn Rempt. We reached out to Rempt to talk about Krita and the commercial support for Krita. Read on…

      • The apps of KDE 4.10 Part IV: Amarok

        Ready to rock out with KDE’s premier music management application? Let’s rediscover our music with Amarok.

      • Plasma Worskpaces 2 On Wayland, A Converged Shell

        The future of the KDE desktop was planned earlier this month at a developer event held at the SUSE headquarters.

        Already we wrote about the results of KDE, Unity, GNOME, and Razor-Qt developers meeting up at SUSE’s Nürnberg offices. There were also clear statements about KDE support for Wayland. Now over on the KDE web-site is a nice summary of their Plasma planning.

      • KDE Post Install Changes
      • KDE Search and Destroy, I mean Launch
      • rekonq 2.3.0

        Here we are, finally ready for the 2.3.0 release. After the 2.2 one we targeted some things to fix and features to implement. We now are in the “almost done” level, meaning that quite all things have been done and that the code push is (hopefully) release level.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • GNOME Music development status

        Now we can browse the albums and their content making it our most complete view. Playback to the albums view and songs view is in development (works but is buggy).

      • GNOME 3.10 Release Schedule

        While many of you, GNOME fans, are still enjoying the newly released GNOME 3.8 desktop environment, the GNOME developers are working hard on the next major version, GNOME 3.10, due for release this Autumn.

        GNOME 3.10 will include many new features, such as automatically updated extensions, focus-caret tracking and color tinting functions for GNOME-Shell, new Maps and Videos apps, as well as Git integration and porting to the Wayland display server.

      • Design Goings On

        The GNOME 3.8 release kept me pretty busy. In the run up to UI freeze I was focusing on tracking bugs, providing guidance and testing. Then it was marketing time, and I was spending all my time writing the release notes as well as some of the website. (Kudos to the marketing team for a great 3.8 release, btw.)

        With 3.8 behind me, I’ve been able to turn back to some good honest design work. I’ve been looking at quite a few aspects of GNOME 3, including Settings and GNOME Shell. However, in this post I am going to focus on some of the application design activities that I have been involved in recently. One of the nice things here is that I have found the opportunity to fill in some gaps and pay some attention to some of the long-lost applications that are in need of design love.

      • LXDE and Calculate Snub GNOME 3

        PCMan has created what looks like a qt fork of PCManFM, and there are some indications there and elsewhere that other LXDE components may be moving in that direction.

  • Distributions

    • List Of Linux Operating System For Ham Radio Operator
    • Linux Stickers at UnixStuff

      Are you a proud Linux user? Do you want to express yourself and show your friends and people around you what is your favourite Linux distribution? You can help the Linux community to grow and enhance your notebook by buying unique Linux-themed stickers and key chains on UnixStuff.net.

    • What Is To Become Of The Little Guy…?

      Our last distro was an Ubuntu 10.04 respin that housed the educational apps and games that make the reglue respin unique. In that support for that LTS is now gone, we’ve had to move on to find another long term solution for Reglue.

      This wasn’t an easy decision to make.

      Reglue is challenged in many areas. Besides the financial struggles we face, there just isn’t a lot of time to spend adding and removing individual apps and games on each computer. Many days, I am the only one working. When those machines hit my workbench, I need a one-stop solution.

      Get it on the bench, get it working, and get it in the Ready Stack. SolusOS is my solution.

      Just to give you a peek behind the curtain, there were some in the organization that balked at my choice. Given the recent turmoil in The Linuxsphere, the question was asked pointedly:

      Is a small developer choice going to last for us?

      It’s an honest question.

    • Have Linux Distros Gotten Too Tubby?
    • Linux Format 171 On Sale Today – 50 Distros Tested!

      Also in the mag we’ve more on the UEFI debacle, a roundup of image editors, an inside look at audio editing with Ardour, Hotpicks and a gaggle/pride/murder of brain-expanding tutorials. Have fun!

    • Linux Distro Picker

      To celebrate the cover feature on the latest Linux Format, we’ve built a web app that helps you find out which Linux distro is right for you. Just enter details of what you’re looking for, and it will pick your perfect distro match.

    • elementary OS 0.2 review – Uphill

      After posting my Pantheon DE review, a lot of people emailed me, telling me that what I did was wrong, namely install this desktop environment from a PPA and run it on top of a Ubuntu desktop. All right then, so what should I have done, I asked politely. They said, test elementary OS, which is a Ubuntu fork all right, with the Pantheon desktop environment on top it. Aha. Same thing? Supposedly not. Go figure.

    • ROSA ABF 2.0

      ROSA is glad to announce version 2.0 of its environment for building and developing open software – ROSA Automatic Build Farm (ABF). The system got more than 100 different improvements which will help developers and maintainers to effectively control the whole life cycle of distributions (from creation of a source code to building ISO images).

    • Livarp – A lightweight Linux Distribution

      Recently I’ve posted an article about the Windows manager and desktop environments that use less resources on Linux and thanks to a comment of Sebastian I’ve discovered Livarp, a lightweight GNU/Linux Distro.

      Livarp is a DEBIAN-based distro that tries to take the best part of available Debian GNU/Linux applications without loosing accessibility or design, special attention was paid to the documentation that in a simple page collects all the most important information you need to know on the available software of this distribution and how to configure it.

    • New Releases

      • SolydXK Added to Distrowatch Database

        Today’s Distrowatch Weekly brought the news that a new distribution has been added to the official Linux database. You know what that means. It’s time to boot ‘er up.

        SolydXK is a Debian-based distribution aiming to easy to use, stable, and secure. Founders believe SolydXK would be suitable for home and small office settings. SolydXK comes in two flavors: SolydX featuring the Xfce desktop and SolydK featuring KDE. SolydXK began life as a variant of Linux Mint Debian with KDE, but later broke away and became its own distro. Its inaugural release came just two weeks ago and was promptly put right smack on this month’s cover of Full Circle Magazine. SolydXK 201304 features Linux 3.2.39, Xorg 1.12.4, GCC 4.7.2, and Firefox 19.0.2.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • Mandriva Business Server gets new apps and security fixes

        Paris the 15th of April 2013: Mandriva S.A. has released a host of security fixes as well as new addons for its server platform, Mandriva Business Server.

      • First look at PCLinuxOS 2013.04

        The PCLinuxOS distribution was originally based on Mandriva, but has since split off and become an independently developed project. PCLinuxOS is a rolling-release distribution with the dual aim of being both powerful and easy to use. Officially PCLinuxOS ships with the KDE desktop interface, while community editions are available which provide Xfce and LXDE flavoured download images. The latest release of PCLinuxOS, version 2013.04, is significant in that it marks the first time the project has released 64-bit builds of the operating system. The new 64-bit builds are made available alongside the usual 32-bit ISO images. Aside from the new architecture support the latest release carries few new features, focusing mostly on updating existing software. In particular the latest release features the new KDE 4.10 desktop.

    • Gentoo Family

      • The new BeagleBone Black and Gentoo

        Some weeks ago I got an early version of the BeagleBone Black from the people at Beagleboard.org to create the documentation I always create with every device I get.

        Like always i’d like to announce the guide for installing Gentoo in the BeagleBone Black. Have a look at: http://dev.gentoo.org/~armin76/arm/beagleboneblack/install.xml . Feel free to send any corrections my way.

    • Arch Family

      • Manjaro: A Convenient Way To Play With Arch Linux

        The Manjaro Linux distribution describes itself as a “user-friendly” version of the popular Arch Linux platform. Manjaro Linux still follows Arch in a rolling-release manner, but it’s designed to offer greater user-friendliness and accessbility, complete with an easy installation routine.

        Beyond having an easy-to-use GUI installer, Manjaro is available in 32-bit and 64-bit flavors and also comes in spins for Mate, LXDE, KDE, and Xfce. Two weeks ago marked the Manjaro 0.8.5 release and then released last week were the MATE/LXDE/KDE desktop flavors to Manjaro 0.8.5. Being curious about this Arch-based distribution, I fired it up on a test system today.

      • Manjaro 0.8.5 KDE Review: With KDE 4.10.2 and added Steam!

        Within a short span of time, Manjaro seems to have hit the right cord with Linux users. In last 8 months, it had 6 major releases with almost all desktop flavors available in their kitty and currently ranked within top 10 in Distrowatch. For those uninitiated to Manjaro, it is an user-friendly spin of Archlinux with popular desktop environments which just works once you boot up. To me, Manjaro is going the Linux Mint way, to provide highly functional, pre-configured Linux distros to make Linux easy for those who are uninitiated. That they are going in the right track is evidenced by the popularity of the distro within a short span of time. Their first release of Manjaro 0.8.0 XFCE was on 21st August and now their fifth upgrade is out within 8 months!

      • Manjaro 0.8.5

        I’ve written lots of distro reviews over the years, but every once in a while I find a new one that turns out to be a delightful surprise. Manjaro 0.8.5 is definitely one of those. Manjaro is based on Arch Linux, and promises to provide an easy to use distro that is still highly customizable.

        Arch Linux has a reputation for not being as accessible for non-technical users as some other distros, so I’m happy to see Manjaro 0.8.5 change that and offer an alternative that combines the power of Arch with ease of use. Like Arch, Manjaro is a rolling release distro. So once you install it, you won’t need to install another release later on to keep it updated to the latest version.

    • Slackware Family

      • Running Slackware-Current

        Slackware 14 was released 17 months after the previous release and in theory there should have been a massive bump. While a lot happened under the hood, for example the introduction of kmod and gtk+ 3, it just felt like more of the same on the desktop and not really worth the upgrade from 13.37, in particular if you’d already updated your stock kernel before. With a Linux kernel 3.2.29 and KDE 4.8.5 the new release seemed quite modest and middle of the road at the time.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat, Inc. : Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst to Deliver Opening Keynote at Open Business Conference
      • Red Hat’s “Buy” Rating Reaffirmed at TheStreet (RHT)

        Red Hat (NYSE: RHT)‘s stock had its “buy” rating restated by analysts at TheStreet in a research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday, Stock Ratings Network reports.

        The analysts wrote, “Red Hat (RHT) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of B. The company’s strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.”

      • Fedora

        • Announcing the release of Fedora 19 Alpha!
        • Linux Shorts: Mageia 3, Slackware, and Fedora 19

          Jaroslav Reznik posted late last week that Fedora 19 Alpha would be released tomorrow as rescheduled. Fedora 19 will feature things like MariaDB instead of MySQL, Scratch programming environment, optional Syslinux, systemd cron and chroot services, predictable network device names, new first boot wizard, 3D printing, and more Anaconda UI work. Fedora 19 is expected for release July 2, the next development release is due May 28.

        • Fedora 19 Sneak Peek

          An alpha version of Fedora 19 has been released, so it’s a good time to take a sneak peek at what Fedora 19 will have to offer users. As always you should note that alpha releases like Fedora 19 should be considered for testing purposes and fun only. You should not rely on it as your daily desktop distro.

        • This week in rawhide 2013-04-23 edition
        • Fedora 19 Alpha Version Arrives

          The much awaited Fedora 19 “Schrödinger’s Cat” alpha release has arrived, as announced here. In case you haven’t been following the evolution of this version of Fedora, it’s been through a number of delays due to issues pertaining to the UEFI Secure Boot scheme that has gained notoriety for helping lock many Linux users out of Windows 8 machines. Fedora has been one of only a handful of Linux distros that have been easy for users to put on some Windows 8 machines, due to UEFI workarounds.

    • Debian Family

      • Linux Mint Debian

        I came across a review of Linux Mint Debian Edition recently and decided to try it out. The review is quite comprehensive as to how Mint installs, what it looks like, and the software it comes with, so I’m just going to add a few points of my own.

        Linux Mint Debian Edition is based on “tested snapshots of Debian Testing”, so you get more recent software than Debian Stable, but with a more stable system than Testing. Debian Testing has been frozen for months as the bugs are knocked outgoing towards the new stable version, and even before that it had been pretty stable for many months. No surprise that Debian Mint is also very stable. I don’t know what it will be like when Testing is unfrozen and a cascade of new updates arrives. It would have been more interesting to test it then. Maybe I’ll try it again in a couple of months when Testing really is ahead of Stable.

      • Release date for Wheezy announced

        Neil McGovern, on behalf of the Debian Release Team, announced the target date of the weekend of 4th/5th May for the release of Debian 7.0 “Wheezy”.

      • Debian Project News – April 29th, 2013
      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Is This The Coolest Ubuntu PC Ever Built?

            German hardware company Cirrus7 are gearing up to release a new Ubuntu-powered PC.

            The aluminium-cased Cirrus7 Nimbus is tiny, measuring just 22cm x 22cm with a height a smidge over 5cm.

            But since “mini-PCs” aren’t exactly hard to find Cirrus7 have made sure the Nimbus will stand out by making it fanless. From what we can discern the aluminium case is also a passive cooler, able to tame the heat from an Intel Core i7-3770T with a max TDP of 45W.

          • Press Reaction to Ubuntu 13.04 Is a Muted, “Meh” Affair
          • My take on Ubuntu 13.04
          • Ubuntu Drivers
          • The Connected Desktop – With Ubuntu Linux
          • Ubuntu 13.04 Winning Wallpapers Revealed

            Canonical has recently announced the winning wallpapers approved for Ubuntu 13.04. Canonical conducts this contest through Flickr and relies on user submissions. Ubuntu13.04 is scheduled to be released soon on April 25th, but you can get the wallpapers now if you want them.

          • The flavors of Ubuntu from A to Z—or at least from Kubuntu to Xubuntu

            The release of Ubuntu 13.04 is less than a week away, bringing with it some refinements to the Unity interface that users either love or hate. But Ubuntu with Unity is far from the only choice for Linux lovers or those looking to avoid Windows and OS X.

            In addition to the many Linux distributions such as Fedora, Debian, or OpenSuse, there is a thriving open source community maintaining desktop operating systems based on Ubuntu code but with different user interfaces. These often have whimsical names like “Kubuntu” and “Xubuntu.” While you can download the standard version of Ubuntu and apply a different user interface to it, most of these alternative distros are built with a non-Unity interface in mind from the start.

          • Ubuntu 13.04 Review: Linux for the average Joe or Jane

            Hard core Linux fans won’t care for it, but for the average user the new Ubuntu desktop Linux has a lot to offer.

          • Ubuntu 13.04 released: how to upgrade
          • Ubuntu 13.04 Is Out. Should You Upgrade?
          • What’s new in Ubuntu 13.04

            Canonical has released the latest version of Ubuntu, code-named “Raring Ringtail”. The H looks at what is new in the release, which its developers claim is one of the snappiest and most good looking versions of Ubuntu yet, but which otherwise seems rather low on features.

          • Ubuntu 13.04 (Raring Ringtail) review

            Some of the features that were to be included in Ubuntu 13.04 have been shelved in favour of presenting a polished and solid release, with most of the improvements residing behind the scenes. As a result, Raring Ringtail may seem a bit of a disappointment.

          • Ubuntu 13.04 boosts graphics performance to prepare for phones, tablets

            Raring Ringtail for Ubuntu desktops and servers now ready to download.

          • Raving Ringtail: The Mixed Motives of Ubuntu 13.04

            In October 2012, Ubuntu’s founder Mark Shuttleworth, blogged that Ubuntu 13.04 would be developed in private, so that the release would be a “magician’s reveal.”

          • Ubuntu 13.04 arrives, Ubuntu 13.10 named

            The release of Ubuntu 13.04 today sees the latest version of the popular Linux distribution visibly changed little from its predecessors. Canonical has chosen to emphasise the engineering process changes and improvements in quality that came from those changes, such as a more responsive desktop and better visual ambience, in 13.04 and made it clear that any radical changes, like the incorporation of the Mir display server, will happen in October’s release of Ubuntu 13.10.

          • Mark Shuttleworth ‘Chillin’ on Ubuntu 13.04 [VIDEO]

            Mark Shuttleworth made the controversial decision to move Ubuntu Linux to the Unity interface back in 2010. It’s a decision that provoked lots of argument, but with the Ubuntu 13.04 Linux release out this week, Shuttleworth remains confident he is moving in the right direction.

            In an exclusive video interview with Datamation, Shuttleworth reflected on the difficult decisions and transitions he has had to make with Ubuntu Linux. Overall Shuttleworth stressed that he deeply cares about the community and its opinions as Ubuntu Linux continues to evolve.

            The Ubuntu 13.04 Raring Ringtail release is set to be officially available on April 25th. The new Linux distribution will continue the evolution of the Unity desktop interface and provide updated applications. Shuttleworth described the release cycle, which pushes out new Ubuntu releases every six months as, ‘performance art’.

          • Canonical says smartphone focus makes Ubuntu 13.04 more efficient

            LINUX DEVELOPER Canonical has said the improvements in resource usage in Ubuntu Linux 13.04 are due to the firm’s ongoing work to adapt the distribution for smartphones and tablets.

            Canonical claims that its latest Ubuntu 13.04 release uses less resources, citing improved boot times, lower memory usage and better power management. Canonical CEO Jane Silber told The INQUIRER that the improvements are due to the firm’s work on bringing Ubuntu to smartphones and tablets.

          • Linux x32 Is Made Easier With Ubuntu 13.04

            While there isn’t yet a release yet of Ubuntu in the Linux x32 ABI flavor, some packages now found in Ubuntu 13.04 make it easier to setup this binary interface that brings some 64-bit advantages to the 32-bit world.

            The Linux x32 implementation is a native 32-bit ABI for Intel/AMD x86_64 systems for software that doesn’t need 64-bit pointers but can benefit from features assumed by 64-bit x86 processors. There’s been mainline Linux kernel support, GDB debugging support, glibc support, and GCC support.

          • Most Highly Recommended Books About Ubuntu Linux

            And back we are with a list of some great books about Linux. Though this time, unlike our earlier post, we’ll be focusing just on Ubuntu.

            Ubuntu, which is the most popular Linux distro around, has been one of the principal reasons that Linux ever took off as a mainstream operating system. Before Ubuntu, Linux was almost inaccessible to the so-called ‘normal user’. And, even though Ubuntu, now, is as easy to use as Windows, or even Mac OS X, underneath those glossy icons and helpful tooltips lays a system that is so powerful only few people manage to understand.

          • Ubuntu 13.04

            Ubuntu 13.04 has been released, so it’s time to take yet another look at Canonical’s popular distro. This time around Ubuntu’s code name is “Raring Ringtail.” It appears to be a reference to the ring-tailed cat. I had no idea what a ring-tail cat is, so of course I googled.

          • Ubuntu Tweak 0.8.4 released

            As you may know, Ubuntu 13.04 is officially release just now! At the same time, Ubuntu Tweak got an update too. This time, it’s Ubuntu Tweak 0.8.4!

            Ubuntu Tweak 0.8.4 is still a maintenance version, the support for Ubuntu 13.04, and fixed some critical bugs. Like this one:

          • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 313
          • Get More Out of Ubuntu 13.04 With These Awesome Apps

            You’ve installed Ubuntu 13.04, followed our ’10 Things to Do’ guide, and now you want some top-notch apps to use on it.

          • Ubuntu 13.04 Emerges to Less-Than-Stellar Reviews

            Raring Ringtail, the newest Ubuntu release, is landing with a thud, based on early reviews. It might have some appeal for businesses, though. “In essence, they’re aiming for a more predictable experience, and I think that could make this a potentially interesting offer for businesses that want to get out from underneath the cost and upgrade cycle of Windows,” said tech analyst Charles King.

          • Ubuntu Server 13.04 Advances with OpenStack

            You may have seen the official announcements of Ubuntu 13.04 this week, or our coverage of it, but the analysis of this new version of the popular Linux distribution just keeps on coming. One of the most important things of all to realize is that the Ubuntu Server 13.04 release that became available this week includes capabilities based on the “Grizzly” release of the populuar OpenStack cloud computing platform, and deepens Ubuntu’s relationship with OpenStack.

          • Ubuntu 13.04: No privacy controls as promised, but hey – photo search!

            First the bad news: most of the big new features planned for Ubuntu 13.04, or Raring Ringtail, haven’t made it – they’ve been pushed back to 13.10, due in October. Despite this, the Ringtail is actually rather good.

          • First Vulnerabilities Hit Ubuntu 13.04

            On April 25, Canonical published details about MySQL vulnerabilities for its Ubuntu 13.04 (Raring Ringtail) operating systems.

            According to Canonical, several security issues have been fixed in MySQL and this update includes new upstream MySQL versions to fix these issues.

          • Full Circle Magazine #72 – Sixth Birthday Edition!
          • Performance Based, Ubuntu 13.04 Review

            The recently released, Ubuntu 13.04, not only brings up-to-date packages (including LibreOffice 4.0), which is pretty usual, but according to its ‘Release Notes’ page, ‘Unity’ desktop 7.0 too brings noticeable improvements, concerning memory consumption & performance.

            On a side note, I know this might sound a bit weird, but from all the Ubuntu versions that I’ve tried over the years, the best performing ones (less bugs & solid performance) were the ‘ .04′ numbered versions, the ones that get released in April. Where the ‘.10′ versions are usually buggy.

          • Mir Display Server Gets A Demo Shell, New Demos

            Canonical’s Mir Display Server now has a simple demo shell as well as a multi-window compositing demo.

            In continuing to monitor the public Bazaar development repository for Mir, there isn’t too much to report on this week. The only highlights were:

          • Whether you love or loathe Ubuntu, 13.04 ‘Raring Ringtail’ won’t change your mind

            A test of the newly-released Ubuntu 13.04 release across four systems shows it’s a solid release. But if you’ve previously been a fan of Ubuntu or feared it, this isn’t the release to make you think otherwise.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • See What`s New In Kubuntu 13.04 (Raring Ringtail)

              Kubuntu 13.04, the KDE-based Ubuntu flavor, has been released yesterday. Let’s take a quick look at what’s new.

            • Lubuntu 13.04 “Raring Ringtail” Review: Fast, efficient and functional

              Lubuntu is one of my favorite distros for it’s amazing resource efficiency and functionality. It may not be the most eye-candy in the Ubuntu clan but definitely the most resource efficient. LXDE traditionally consumes lower resources than Gnome or KDE and even XFCE. And most importantly, it is customizable enough to make it look really attractive. Though the release note of Lubuntu 13.04 didn’t state a whole lot of incremental improvements, still I was interested to check it out.

            • Review: Fuduntu 2013.2

              I haven’t checked out Fuduntu in over a year. I wasn’t particularly planning to do so either, because I wasn’t exactly expecting huge changes. But then I saw some news that changed my mind.

            • Farewell, Fuduntu: The Untimely Demise of a Winning Linux Distro

              The people behind some Linux distros have “the warrior mindset,” observed Google+ blogger Brett Legree. They “choose the road not taken, … chart their own course and stand out. I would say that Fuduntu is one of those, and from what I have read in the past few days, I do believe that the warriors who are part of it have something very special in store. I believe that they are up to the challenge.”

            • Where Will Your Linux Distro Be in Five Years?
            • Reviews: First look at Bodhi Linux 2.3.0

              Bodhi Linux is a Linux distribution which uses Ubuntu’s long term support releases as its base. Upon this stable base, which will be supported for five years, the Bodhi developers add the Enlightenment desktop and up to date applications. The result is a small, very fast Linux distribution which, thanks to the malleability of Enlightenment, sports a highly flexible interface. Bodhi can run on three different architectures (both 32-bit and 64-bit x86 along with ARM) and, according to the project’s website, Bodhi can be run on personal computers with just 128MB of RAM. The project has an attractive website which contains a good deal of useful documentation.

            • Linux Mint 14: First Impressions

              For the last three weeks my wife and I have been traveling, which has given us both a chance to try out Linux Mint 14 with MATE on her netbook and my laptop. So far, I’m favorably impressed.

              I’ve already reported that Mint was easy to install on both machines, except for one well-known bug which I’m sure will be fixed in the next release. I’m happy to say that, except for one glitch, it has worked perfectly on both machines.

              1. I like the MATE desktop environment (a fork of GNOME 2). I particularly like how the pop-up Start menu works. You can switch easily between “Favourites” and “All Applications.” When showing “All Applications” the applications and categories appear in two columns, and it’s easy to scroll through the applications. I came to dislike how KDE4 implemented this; whereas I find the MATE way easy to use.

            • Privacy Enhanced Ubuntu remix

              Today, Canonical have released Raring Ringtail, the latest version of their Ubuntu Linux distribution. Here at Tuxradar, we like Ubuntu, but we don’t like the way they send all your desktop searches to Amazon. We want to be able to use our computers without Jeff Bezos seeing all our data. So, we’ve created Privacy Enhanced Ubuntu. It’s exactly the same as Raring Ringtail, but doesn’t return Amazon results for searches in the default lens. There’s still an Amazon shopping lens there if you want to use it (click on the shopping bag icon in the dash).

            • Ubuntu without the ‘U’: Booting the Big Four remixes

              It’s the end of April, so that means that there’s a new release of Ubuntu. Well, actually, no – it means that there are eight of them. Don’t like standard Ubuntu’s Mac-OS-X-like Unity desktop? Here’s where to look.

              There are umpteen “remixes” alongside the eponymous distro. These mostly differ by having a different desktop – and therefore overall look and feel – but also in some cases different preinstalled apps. There are more than one hundred – many moribund, very specialised or otherwise of little interest – but seven enjoy official recognition. I’m going to look at the “Big Four” – Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Lubuntu and Ubuntu GNOME. All have a different interface from the standard distro, meaning something for everyone.

            • Trisquel GNU/Linux flies the flag for software freedom

              Trisquel is a 100 per cent ‘free as in free speech’ GNU/Linux distribution started by Rubén Rodríguez Pérez nine years ago.

              “It started as a project at the university I was studying at. They just wanted a custom distro because… everybody was doing that at the time!” Pérez says.

            • Bodhi Linux Review – Enlightened Ubuntu

              An enlightened versions of Ubuntu, Bodhi is an incredibly lightweight and highly customisable distro using Canonical’s base. Is Bodhi crippled from this, or much better?

  • Devices/Embedded

    • $99 HDMI stick promises universal AirPlay

      Plair says it is now shipping its “Plair” media-streaming device to U.S. customers. Unveiled earlier this year at CES, the $99 embedded Linux-powered gadget is said to provide AirPlay-like beaming of multimedia content from Apple, Windows, and Android devices to “any HDTV” with an available HDMI port.

    • Death to Raspberry/Pi — Beaglebone Black is on a market

      As guys from/around Texas Instruments promised there is new Beaglebone Black on a market. Faster, cheaper, with video output and other extras. For me it looks like Raspberry/Pi killer done right.

    • $80 PC-on-a-stick runs Linux-based XBMC media center

      We’ve covered Android-powered PCs-on-a-stick extensively here on TG Daily. But what about a PC-on-a-stick specifically designed to run the Linux version of XBMC?

      Well, a crowd-funding project at Indiegogo wants to make it so and is building on the idea of various Linux-based operating systems designed to run XBMC on the wildly popular Raspberry Pi.

    • Phones

      • Jolla gets new CEO and board
      • Firefox OS developer phones sold out

        Spanish manufacturer/seller Geeksphone already has run out of the two Firefox OS phones that went on sale for developers today.

      • First Firefox OS phones now shipping worldwide
      • The first Firefox OS dev phones are on sale

        The developer test phones for Firefox OS are now on sale. They’re being produced by Geeksphone, a small Spanish outfit that used to make Android handsets for true open-source cognoscenti and that is now backing Mozilla’s operating system as the way forward.

        Geeksphone is far from the only company pushing Firefox OS – operators seem especially keen, largely because they want to shake up the Google/Apple smartphone duopoly. However, it is the only firm thus far to start selling devices using the operating system (ZTE will also sell Firefox OS phones from around the middle of the year).

Free Software/Open Source

  • Hosting Companies Shouldn’t Be Parasites

    A hosting company calls for hosting companies to support the open source software that makes them successful

  • FOSS: Breaking the Chains of Apple and Microsoft

    It has been a few weeks since I posted an article here at The ERACC Web Log. I have been kicking around some article ideas, but nothing has gelled until today. I do have some projects going that I will be writing about once they are done. I do not believe in writing articles just to have new content. In that direction lay mediocrity. I prefer actually having something worthwhile to write about. At least something I think is worthwhile.

    A recent event with a local client has started me thinking, again, about Microsoft, Apple, FOSS and vendor lock-in. I am not a proponent of vendor lock-in. This screen capture of my VirtualBox Windows XP Professional test VM speaks to that.VM with XP-pro on fluxbox window manager under linux

    This local client had decided to abandon Microsoft and change out their office systems for new hardware with new operating systems. Thus already requiring retraining and all that comes with such a change. Of course, I made the pitch for Linux with all FOSS. In general, they only use their systems for e-mail and creating quote documents for clients. Under FOSS systems, the e-mail is covered with any number of FOSS e-mail applications, while the quote documents are covered with LibreOffice to create PDF files. One of the systems does run accounting software for billing and payments. But they do not do their own payroll, so LedgerSMB would work for their billing and payments accounting system.

  • Components Becoming Major Source Of CVEs

    Earlier today Sonatype released the results of their annual survey. The survey looks at the extent to which developers use open source components, with a particular focus on how they balance the competing needs of speed and security. The data makes it clear that security is very often not the priority.

    The results of the survey show the massive extent to which developers now rely on components. Of course, this has been the case for many years, but the full maturation of the concept of component assembly rather than code writing is well illustrated here.

  • Developers: Are You A Giver Or Taker?

    Takers are people who, when interacting with another person, are trying to get as much as possible from that person and contribute as little as they can in return, thinking that’s the shortest and most direct path to achieving their own goals.

  • Events

    • Once again, Linux Fest Northwest nails it
    • OSI to Host DC Metro Open Source Community Summit May 10, 2013

      Another in the series of public meetings to be hosted by the OSI around its next face-to-face board meeting, OSI will also host the non-profit DC Metro Open Source Community Summit at the Mayflower Renaissance in Washington, D.C. The May 10th, 2013 program will include short sessions by some of our OSI board members and an “unconference” format for maximum attendee participation, collaboration, and learning.

    • North by (Linux Fest) Northwest

      Toward the end of this week — well, Thursday to be exact — I’ll be loading up the car with a few laptops, about 100 pieces of CrunchBang media (DVDs, not CDs), a paper #! banner, my daughter and her equipment and we’ll head north to Linux Fest Northwest in Bellingham, Washington on April 27-28.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla finalizes proposal for changes to Firefox’s customization options

        The last week has been filled with uncertainty in regards to proposed Firefox customization changes in the wake of the Australis theme release. Mozilla was heavily criticized for its initial proposal, both here on Ghacks but also on platforms such as Reddit, and posted a second proposal soon thereafter. The core issue at hand was that many users felt that Mozilla decided to take away customization options that were pare of the Firefox web browser for a long time, and that it did not really care about the opinion of the browser’s users. Some feared that Firefox would become just like Google Chrome, a browser that is offering barely any customization options.

      • Update: Opera claims former employee gave stolen trade secrets to Mozilla

        Update: In a post to his own Tumblr blog, Hansen says he believes Opera’s lawsuit is centered on the “Search Tabs” function of Firefox that was demonstrated in the video alongside “Junior.” Hansen claims the feature was originally a concept he developed for an open-source browser of his own he started working on after leaving Opera, which he called “GB”—a browser for which the revenue from searches would be donated to “green” causes. “In the summer of 2008, Opera’s founder and CEO at the time, Jon von Tetzchner reaches out and asks if I want to contribute more to Opera,” Hansen wrote. “I tell him about GB and propose that we could develop GB as a rebooted and simplified Opera browser. He is very interested, but when we start to talk business, and I tell him that I want no salary and no shares, but 1% of the search revenue as compensation, he says that’s not possible. So there is no deal. In fact, there is never any kind of deal or transfer of ownership of GB concepts to Opera.” A year later, Opera brought him on as a consultant; some of the design proposals he made during that period were based on his ideas for GB, he claims.

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Funding

    • Non-Profit Accounting Software

      Software Freedom Conservancy have announced a fundraising campaign for an Open Source non-profit accounting system. The campaign seeks to raise $75,000 to fund a full-time developer for one year to first reevaluate existing solutions for their viability as a non-profit accounting system, and then improve and augment the best available system to create a new solution that will help non-profits around the world manage their finances better.

  • BSD

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • The FSF is hiring: Seeking a full-time outreach and communication coordinator

      The Free Software Foundation (FSF), a Boston-based 501(c)(3) charity with a worldwide mission to protect freedoms critical to the computer-using public, seeks a motivated and organized tech-friendly Boston-based individual to be its full-time outreach and communication coordinator.

    • FSF-certified to Respect Your Freedom: ThinkPenguin USB Wifi adapter with Atheros chip

      BOSTON, Massachusetts, USA — Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 — The Free Software Foundation (FSF) today awarded Respects Your Freedom (RYF) certification to the TPE-N150USB Wireless N USB Adapter, sold by ThinkPenguin. The RYF certification mark means that the product meets the FSF’s standards in regard to users’ freedom, control over the product, and privacy. The TPE-N150USB can be purchased from http://www.thinkpenguin.com/TPE-N150USB. Software certification focused primarily on the firmware for the Atheros AR9271 chip used on the adapter.

    • FreeIPMI 1.2.6 Released
  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

  • Licensing

    • Free as a bird

      This diversity is a testament to both the ingenuity of the teams responsible and the rights enshrined within the GPL. But more than anything else, it’s the ‘freedom’ found in the licence that has made Linux what it is today – an operating system found in the smallest and largest of devices; underground, underwater, in your hand, in space, at school, at the office – everywhere.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • The Rise of ‘Open Source’: It’s Not Just About Software

      Here in the tech world, it’s become increasingly common to see market research and reports testifying to the growing ubiquity of open source software, such as the one just last week from Black Duck Software and North Bridge Venture Partners indicating that open source is “eating” the software world, as the authors put it.

      What’s typically not recognized, however, is that this trend toward openness in software is just one piece of a much bigger picture. In fact, openness is a trend that’s taking hold throughout numerous aspects of the modern world, to the benefit of everyday people like you and me.

      “Open,” in other words, appears to be the future – whether we’re talking software or beyond.

      Ready for a quick tour? Most Linux advocates are already well aware of the benefits of open source when it comes to software, but here are two other kinds of openness I’ve come to appreciate from the writing I do outside the tech world.

    • Open Hardware

      • The case for Open 3D Printing (now with links)

        3D Printing is all the hype these days, at least among some communities. What it really is however spans a lot of different things, several different uses and in general many different realities. 3D printing has actual uses in lots of industries and can be considered to be born out of the need for more rapid prototyping. But it’s far to be the whole story about it. Rapid prototyping is clearly a well identified use of 3D printing, however new uses, from art to spare parts production (and more) have proven to exist as well. To this day, 3D printers that are affordable come in two different kinds and target a market that’s generally seen as a hobbyist one (not that it’s a wrong way to perceive it).

  • Programming

    • Guile 100: Challenge #6. plus new rules

      Challenge #6 in the Guile 100 Programs Project is to write a Guile CGI script that accesses a MySQL-family database. It is the second challenge in this month’s theme, which is “Web 1.0 — Web 1990s style”.

      The Guile 100 Programs Project is an attempt to collaboratively generate a set of examples of how to use the GNU Guile implementation of Scheme.

    • Capsule, The Developer’s Code Journal

Leftovers

  • How Facebook Designs the ‘Perfect Empty Vessel’ for Your Mind

    …obligations that are packed down into this term, user?

  • Government forces benefits claimants to use Windows XP and IE6

    THE UK GOVERNMENT has shown it’s at the forefront of modern technology and online services with its latest form for claiming benefits online.

    Those who want to claim either Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance or Overseas State Pension can simply visit the Gov.UK website, where they are then pointed to the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) website to fill out a form online.

  • Hardware

  • Security

    • Compromised Apache binaries load malicious code

      Researchers at web security firm Sucuri have discovered modified binaries in the open source Apache web server. The binaries will load malicious code or other web content without any user interaction. Only files that were installed using the cPanel administration tool are currently thought to be affected. ESET says that several hundred web servers have been compromised.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • More Bodies Identified In Texas Fertilizer Plant Explosion

      Authorities have identified four more sets of remains of first responders who battled last week’s fire and explosion at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas. Wednesday’s blast and injured more than 200, according to officials cited by .

    • Texas fertilizer plant explosion: 14 bodies recovered from site

      Bodies include those of firefighters who were tackling a blaze at the West Fertilizer Company when blast occurred

    • Texas fertilizer plant explosion: no government watchdog visits since 2007

      Expert says Occupational Safety & Health Administration, which last visited West in 1985, is ‘undermanned and overloaded’

    • Bangladesh factory building collapse death toll exceeds 500

      Engineer becomes ninth person to be detained over country’s worst industrial accident, as number of deaths climbs to 501

    • Statement of the Ambassador of the Czech Republic on the Boston terrorist attack

      As more information on the origin of the alleged perpetrators is coming to light, I am concerned to note in the social media a most unfortunate misunderstanding in this respect. The Czech Republic and Chechnya are two very different entities – the Czech Republic is a Central European country; Chechnya is a part of the Russian Federation.

    • The Official Tsarnaev Story Makes No Sense

      We are asked to believe that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was identified by the Russian government as an extremist Dagestani or Chechen Islamist terrorist, and they were so concerned about it that in late 2010 they asked the US government to take action. At that time, the US and Russia did not normally have a security cooperation relationship over the Caucasus, particularly following the Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008. For the Russians to ask the Americans for assistance, Tsarnaev must have been high on their list of worries.

      In early 2011 the FBI interview Tsarnaev and trawl his papers and computers but apparently – remarkably for somebody allegedly radicalised by internet – the habitually paranoid FBI find nothing of concern.

      So far, so weird. But now this gets utterly incredible. In 2012 Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who is of such concern to Russian security, is able to fly to Russia and pass through the airport security checks of the world’s most thoroughly and brutally efficient security services without being picked up. He is then able to proceed to Dagestan – right at the heart of the world’s heaviest military occupation and the world’s most far reaching secret police surveillance – again without being intercepted, and he is able there to go through some form of terror training or further Islamist indoctrination. He then flies out again without any intervention by the Russian security services.

    • Ludicrous Claims Department

      Really? 30,000 attacks analysed, including researching the internet traffic of the perpetrators and their public statements?

      That is rather a lot of work. Firstly you have to identify the attack and identify the perpetrator. Then you have to access their internet use and go through it looking for relevant reading, comments or relevant messages.

  • Cablegate

    • “The Project” in Kazakhstan

      But I want to focus rather narrowly on one point. Assange talks at length of his disappointment at the presentation of the State Department cables by Wikileaks’ mainstream media partners. In relation to the Guardian, among other things he says this:

      “The Guardian redacted two thirds of a cable about Bulgarian crime, removed all the names of the people who had infiltrated – the mafioso – who had infiltrated the Bulgarian government. Removed a description of the Kazakstan elite, which said that the Kazakstan elite in general were corrupt, not even a particular name, just in general! Removed a description that a an energy company out of Italy operating in Kazakhstan was corrupt, so they have redacted for naming of individual names of people who might be unfairly put at risk, just like we do–that is what we require of them. They have redacted the names of mafioso, individual mafioso because they are worried that they might get sued for libel in London by this mafioso. They have redacted the names… they have redacted the description of a class of Kazakhstan elite, a class has been corrupt, and they have redacted descriptions of individual companies being corrupt because they don’t want to expose themselves to any risk at all.”

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • LSE Get It Wrong on North Korea

      If nobody from the LSE is ever allowed into the terrible North Korean dictatorship again, that will be a bad thing. But the benefit of the very wide spreading of truth by John Sweeney’s documentary is worth a very, very great deal more. The academics of the LSE may not entirely use their “access” to lick Kim Jong Whatever’s arse. But the said academics certainly don’t want to be associated with the spreading of the obvious truth that the said arse reeks to high heaven.

    • Guardian Channel Thatcher on Europe
  • Censorship

  • Privacy

    • Zombie Problem: Stop Dancing On The Grave

      Apparently the Communications Data Bill is dead. I wonder for how long? It’s a zombie bill that has been killed before…

    • Regulation Set To Strip Citizens Of Their Right To Privacy

      A coalition of international and european organisations, including Access, Bits of Freedom, Digitale Gesellschaft, EDRI, La Quadrature du Net, Open Rights Group, and Privacy International, release a commun campaign and website, nakedcitizens.eu. The site allows concerned citizens to contact their representatives in the European Parliament to urge them to vote in a way that ensures the protection of their fundamental right to privacy.

    • Experts say drop web snooping plans

      Today’s Times newspaper leads with an important development on the Communications Data Bill.

      A group of ten leading academics and computer science experts have added their voices to the growing chorus of objection over the bill, far beyond the scope of merely tinkering with the drafted legislation.

    • The taxman wants to HMRC who you’ve been calling

      As our Freedom of Information request shows, Between 2009 and 2011, HRMC made 41,351 snooping requests for details of phone calls and mobile texts. The only police forces to make more requests in the same period were the Metropolitan police and Merseyside police.

    • We’re under atax

      SNOOPING tax inspectors have made 41,351 requests to see details about people’s private communications in the past three years, The Sun can reveal.

    • The snoopers charter is dead
    • How HMRC treated its Goldman Sachs tax deal whistleblower as a criminal

      Tax officials used intrusive powers to rake through Osita Mba’s personal data in attempt to prove he had spoken to the Guardian

    • Japanese Police Urge ISPs to Block Tor

      Authorities in Japan are presumably worried about their inability to tackle cybercrime and, in a bid to stem one of the sources of anonymous traffic, the National Police Agency (NPA) is asking ISPs to block Tor.

  • Civil Rights

    • Bangladeshi Cartoonists Draw on the Garment Factory Tragedy
    • India and Women

      Since the horrific bus rape case, the problems of rape in India have been firmly on the western media agenda. Today BBC World is carrying two different and terrible stories – one of the rape of a five year old girl in Delhi, and one of the death of a rape victim in a botched abortion.

    • security theater, martial law, and a tale that trumps every cop-and-donut joke you’ve ever heard

      First, just in case it’s not utterly obvious, I’m glad that the two murderous cowards who attacked civilians in Boston recently are off the streets. One dead and one in custody is a great outcome.

      That said, a large percent of the reaction in Boston has been security theater. “Four victims brutally killed” goes by other names in other cities.

      In Detroit, for example, they call it “Tuesday”.

      …and Detroit does not shut down every time there are a few murders.

      “But Clark,” I hear you say, “this is different. This was a terrorist attack.”

    • No one should be jailed in secret, says top judge

      Lord chief justice issues urgent guidance to judges following court of protection’s imprisonment of Wanda Maddocks

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • What does the Special 301 really reveal?

      Perhaps the best way to understand what this report has to offer is through the understanding that the USTR, while wearing an official, government hat, actually represents the interests of a very specific group of American companies. Many of the report’s observations highlight not the state of the countries being discussed but the fear which those companies represented by the USTR have of rival economies there. In many ways, the Special 301 report is actually illustrative of a conflict within the USA itself. Economies such as Ukraine — newly vilified in this year’s report — are popular destinations for outsourcing from the USA, powering the disruptive American businesses challenging the dominance of the companies which grew huge in the last century.

      There’s no doubt that being listed in the Special 301 report is a diplomatic issue. One has to wonder how appropriate it is to the new meshed economy, though.

    • The U.S. government’s “watch list” on developing countries’ use of health rights

      Special 301 is an annual report by the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) which places countries on a “watch list” if USTR would like to see greater changes in their intellectual property rules or enforcement practice. This year’s report came out May 1st. We pay attention because USTR relies heavily on comments from big business, and USTR’s opaque standards and criticism of other countries could stymie the development of public interest policies in areas including health. For example, countries have sovereign rights to issue “compulsory licenses” on pharmaceutical patents. Compulsory licensing authorizes price-lowering generic competition with patented drugs in exchange for royalty payments to the patent holder. It’s a key strategy for improving access to affordable medicines, especially in developing countries.

    • Copyrights

      • Will the EU Parliament Let TAFTA Turn Into Another ACTA?

        On 25 April next, the “International Trade” (INTA) committee of the European Parliament will vote on a draft resolution on the proposed EU-US trade agreement, the “Trans-Atlantic Free Trade Agreement” (TAFTA), also touted as the “Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership” (TTIP). After the ACTA, SOPA, PIPA and CETA fights, once again the negotiators of this new trade agreement try to use it as an opportunity to impose online repression. With Thursday’s vote, Members of the European Parliament can and must remove “intellectual property” provisions from the negotiations, and avoid an undemocratic trade agreement that will inflict the worst of both regimes’ rules on the other party. Instead, the current version of the resolution that will be put to vote on Thursday proposes to “include strong protection of intellectual property rights (IPR)” in TAFTA.

      • EU Parliament Opens The Door to Copyright Repression in TAFTA

        Today, the “International Trade” (INTA) committee of the European Parliament adopted a resolution1 on the proposed EU-US trade agreement – the “Trans-Atlantic Free Trade Agreement” (TAFTA), also touted as the “Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership” (TTIP). The Parliament unfortunately decided to ignore the calls of civil society groups to keep “IP out of TAFTA”.

      • Anti-Piracy Chief Pleads Guilty to Drug Trafficking

        Following an undercover police investigation, the Vice President of Lithuanian Anti-Piracy Association LANVA has pleaded guilty to drug trafficking charges. Vytas Simanavicius, known for his efforts to curb online piracy in the Baltic country, faces up to eight years in prison. Because of the looming incarceration, his role as an expert witness in a Microsoft court case against a local BitTorrent site has become uncertain.

      • The Pirate Bay’s Gottfrid Learns of Hacking Charges via TV News

        Last week Pirate Bay co-founder Gottfrid Svartholm was charged with hacking into companies and a bank. While it’s no surprise that the news traveled quickly through the media, one might have expected that Gottfrid himself would be one of the first to hear the news. But Gottfrid’s mother Kristina informs TorrentFreak that her son learned of the charges by watching TV news in his cell. Even today he still hasn’t seen a copy of the lawsuit.

      • Accused Chinese spy charged with downloading porn, not NASA secrets

        Bo Jiang, the Chinese national accused of spying on NASA, was formally charged in a Virginia court this week — not for conducting espionage, but for downloading porn and pirated movies to his computer. A former research contractor at NASA’s Langely Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, Jiang was originally indicted on March 20th, when federal investigators arrested him just before he departed on a one-way ticket from Washington, DC to Beijing. At the time, authorities accused Jiang of sharing sensitive information with the Chinese government — he had a NASA-issued laptop with him at the time of his in-flight arrest — but as Bloomberg Businessweek reports, it now appears that their fears were unfounded.

      • U.S. Ambassador: Internet Piracy and Illegal Immigration are Both a ‘Compliment’

        U.S. Ambassador to Australia Jeffrey L. Bleich is back once again with a new Internet piracy missive. The long-time friend of Barack Obama caused controversy by getting involved in the Game of Thrones download debate last month, but now believes that he hasn’t got involved enough. Quoting the earlier words of HBO, Bleich says that if online piracy is a compliment to Game of Thrones, then the same holds true for illegal immigration or someone hitting on your partner.

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