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Links 20/5/2013: First Salifish Smartphone, Mageia 3 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 11:26 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Logitech Adds ‘Linux Compatible’ Option to Product Site; Sign of Good Things to Come?

      As rich as the Linux OS is, one of its sticking-points is that a lot of companies don’t properly support their products for it. Your Logitech mouse might work just fine under the OS, of course, but it wouldn’t be the company to thank; rather, the support comes from the efforts of developers who share the same passion for the OS as you do. My ASUS Xonar audio card works brilliantly under Linux, but ASUS had nothing to do with it.

  • Applications

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • Mageia 3 Released with Steamy Goodness

        he third official release of, the popular Mandriva fork, Mageia is now available. After months of delays and a mountain of challenges, Patricia Fraser said, “We still can’t believe how much fun it is to make Mageia together, and we’ve been doing it for two and a half years.”

        Like every new release, Mageia 3 comes chocked full ‘o upgrades. Some of these include Linux 3.8.13, Xorg X Server 1.13.4, GCC 4.7.2, KDE 4.10.2, GNOME 3.6, LibreOffice 4.0.2, GIMP 2.8.2, and Firefox 17.05. But a few new surprises await as well.

    • Debian Family

      • Review of Debian GNU/Linux 7.0

        Debian GNU/Linux is one of the oldest surviving Linux distributions and will be celebrating its 20th anniversary later this year. The venerable project is home to hundreds of volunteers who maintain over 35,000 software packages. Debian has expanded over the years and currently supports nine hardware architectures, displaying an unusual level of flexibility for a Linux distribution. Debian isn’t just a long lived Linux distro, the project also maintains ports which allow developers and users to experiment with running GNU software on top of alternative kernels, including Hurd and the FreeBSD kernel. This amazing diversity, along with Debian’s reputation for stability, has caused many developers to base their own projects on Debian.

        Dozens of the world’s most popular and widely used open-source projects (including Ubuntu, Linux Mint and KNOPPIX) can trace their ancestry back to Debian. Apart from being one of the largest existing open-source projects Debian is also a social experiment. The project is run as a democracy, a rarity in the open-source world, where developers vote on important changes and are guided by a constitution. For the reasons given above, more so than the anticipated features, the release of a new version of Debian sends ripples through the open-source community. Debian may be a famously conservative project, but everything its developers do affect large portions of the open-source population. I was quite eager to see what Debian 7.0, code name Wheezy, would offer.

      • How to transform a Debian based system to a Debian Edu installation

        Debian Edu / Skolelinux is an operating system based on Debian intended for use in schools. It contain a turn-key solution for the computer network provided to pupils in the primary schools. It provide both the central server, network boot servers and desktop environments with heaps of educational software. The project was founded almost 12 years ago, 2001-07-02. If you want to support the project, which is in need for cash to fund developer gatherings and other project related activity, please donate some money.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Development plans for Ubuntu 13.10

            Among the topics discussed by the developers at Ubuntu Developer Summit 13.05 were the planned new features for Ubuntu 13.10. The next version of the distribution, code-named “Saucy Salamander”, could include early versions of Ubuntu’s Mir display server and have the Qt-based Unity Next desktop environment for testing. However, the default configuration will continue to include the graphics stack of Ubuntu 12.10 with X11, Compiz and Unity 7. By 2014, Canonical plans to unify the code base for Ubuntu’s smartphone, tablet and PC desktops, based on Mir and Unity Next.

          • Ubuntu Touch: the (natural) next step in personal computing?

            I don’t think many people have realised that we are on the verge of a technological revolution. The computing world is changing, and this is the first time GNU/Linux is catching the revolution as it begins. Computers are getting smaller and smaller, while phones are getting bigger and bigger. Everybody can see that they about to converge — but in what form? Well, the answer is: GNU/Linux — before anybody else. The ingredients? A great GNU/Linux distribution, a leader with the right vision, and a few very bold, ground-breaking choices. Mix it well: the result is Ubuntu Touch. Let me go through these ingredients.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Linux Mint 15 “Olivia” gets release candidate

              The Linux Mint developers have announced a release candidate for the upcoming version of their distribution, Linux Mint 15. The release, which is code-named “Olivia”, is being built on Ubuntu 13.04 and is billed by Linux Mint founder Clement Lefebvre as “the most ambitious release since the start of the project.”

  • Devices/Embedded

    • OpenPandora review, part two

      Welcome, Willkommen, Bienvenue! To the second article in my Pandora series. As you recall, several weeks back, I received a test unit from Michael Mrozek, of the world’s smallest, most-powerful gaming micro-computer. In the first installment, we talked most about initial impressions, the look & feel, specifications, and a brief taste of the variety of its capabilities, technologies and interfaces.

      Now, we will dig deeper. In this article, I will focus on firmware refresh of the test unit, trying to bring the system to a newer edition, as well as dabble in the ins and outs of the Xfce desktop environment. I will leave the gaming-oriented MiniMenu and the Android mod for the third and last part in this would-be trilogy. Follow me.

    • Arduino launches Yún for WiFi connectivity under Linux

      THE SINGLE BOARD MICROCONTROLLER Arduino has been revamped to offer WiFi connectivity under Linux, in order to make connecting to complex web services much easier directly from the device.

      Named the Arduino Yún, which apparently is Chinese for “cloud”, the microcontroller claims to be the first of a family of WiFi products combined with a customised version of the Linux operating system (OS) distribution OpenWRT called Linino.

      Designed in collaboration with chip firm Dog Hunter, Linino provides signed packages to ensure the authenticity of the software installed on the device and, according to Arduino, Linino is the most used Linux distribution for embedded devices.

    • Phones

      • Jolla announces first Sailfish-based smartphone

        Finnish startup Jolla has announced its first smartphone, which shows off its Sailfish OS on a 4.5-inch screen.

      • Jolla announces its first Salifish OS smartphone
      • Here Comes Jolla, Yet Another Deviant Linux Smartphone
      • Sailfish OS phone “Jolla” debuts, available for preorders
      • Ballnux

        • Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 review – A surprise

          Holy shit! What you, Dedoimedo, you sellout, you hypocrite! Wait, calm down. All is well. There’s a reason why I decided to buy a tablet. One, I can afford it. Two, I really wanted to see what makes the retards get so excited. Three, I had an actual business need for this, but more about that later. Anyhow, this is my very first experience with a tablet. Honestly. I’ve never used one before. So it should be definitely most interesting. I’ve dabbled in Android a bit now and then, and overall, I was not really impressed. The x86 version for netbooks was ok but not magnificent, however, on the other hand, my smartphone experience was, overall, quite frustrating.

          Let’s how a pretentious old git like me managed to cope with this new modern technology. Better yet, why a pretentious old git like me would ever want to buy a device that is operated by touch only. Finally, this is a proper, thorough review of the Samsung tablet, probably of a higher quality, relevance and greater depth than anything else out there, because after all, it’s Dedoimedo writing this stellar review. Avanti.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

Free Software/Open Source

  • Why We Need Open Source: Three Cautionary Tales

    Open Enterprise mostly writes about “obvious” applications of open source – situations where money can be saved, or control regained, by shifting from proprietary to open code. That battle is more or less won: free software is widely recognised as inherently superior in practically all situations, as its rapid uptake across many markets demonstrates. But there are also some circumstances where it may not be so obvious that open source is the solution, because it’s not always clear what the problem is.

    For example, in the field of economics, there is a well-known paper by Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff entitled, “Growth in a Time of Debt.” The main result is that “median growth rates for countries with public debt over 90 percent of GDP are roughly one percent lower than otherwise; average (mean) growth rates are several percent lower.” Needless to say, this has been seized upon and widely cited by those in favour of austerity.

  • Open source browser based code editors

    The humble browser. Its main purpose, for many years, was to serve up simple HTML documents and provide information on just about any subject you could think of. In the last decade, with broadband taking over from dial-up, and net connections getting ever quicker, websites have increasingly provided applications usually restricted to the desktop.

  • CMS

    • Open Source WordPress Grows on Yahoo Tumblr Buyout

      The big news in the tech world that emerged over the weekend is that Yahoo is set to repeat its decade old mistake and acquire Tumblr (Geocities redux) for $1 Billion.

      I’m not a fan of Tumblr, but I am a fan of freedom and WordPress, both of which are apparently now ‘winning’ as a side effect of this deal. While it’s still unclear precisely how Yahoo’s ownership may/may not affect Tumblr, users are already voting with their blogs.

  • Public Services/Government

    • Five Star Movement urges Italian city of Bari to move to open source

      The administration of the Italian city of Bari must increase its use of free and open source software solutions, say local representatives of the Five Star Movement. Switching to open source will be part of the movement’s election programme for the municipal elections in 2014.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Hardware

      • An Interview With Dr. Joshua Pearce Of Printers For Peace

        Joshua Pearce, PhD, is a researcher at Michigan Tech who rearches open source and low-impact solutions to engineering problems. He is also the founder of the Printers For Peace contest, an effort to bring together clever 3D-printed ideas that have loftier aims. You can win one of two 3D printers if you submit a winning project.


  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

  • Cablegate

  • Finance

    • Bitcoin developer chats about regulation, open source, and the elusive Satoshi Nakamoto

      With Bitcoin all the rage and startups popping up left and right, it’s hard to know who’s an expert in the virtual currency and who just has an opinion. Most people would put Jeff Garzik in the former camp.

    • The world is rich – the rich are the problem

      There’s no shortage of food, no shortage of wealth to solve social crises. The problem is a system that enriches a few and starves the many. We hear day in day out about the massive poverty and hunger that exists in the world. NGO’s and various non-profits have been around for decades appealing for assistance in feeding the world’s poor. Some experts think it is simply an overpopulation problem and it is the poor that are to blame; if only they’d have fewer children, they advise. It is not too many people that are the problem. It is not the lack of medical knowledge or technical expertise that leads to staggering infant and adult death rates in some parts of the world. It is the lack of social infrastructure and the political will needed to provide it.

    • TV presenters, bankers and government advisers among 1,000 Britons linked to tax havens

      - Broadcaster and former footballer John Fashanu on list

      - Trade adviser Alpesh Patel also named on leaked database

      - It also includes Goldman Sachs and Coutts, The Queen’s bank

      - Data has been leaked in tranches by a whistleblower since 2009

      - HMRC keen to clamp down on wealth sheltered in tax havens

    • The IRS Scandal: It’s Not a Bug, It’s a Feature
  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Dissent or Terror: New Report Details How Counter Terrorism Apparatus Was Used to Monitor Occupy Movement Nationwide

      DBA Press and the Center for Media and Democracy today released the results of a year-long investigation: “Dissent or Terror: How the Nation’s Counter Terrorism Apparatus, In Partnership With Corporate America, Turned on Occupy Wall Street.”

      The report, a distillation of thousands of pages of records obtained from counter terrorism/law enforcement agencies, details how state/regional “fusion center” personnel monitored the Occupy Wall Street movement over the course of 2011 and 2012. Personnel engaged in this activity at fusion centers include employees of municipal, county and federal counter terrorism/homeland security entities. Such entities include local police departments, the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (including U.S. DHS components such as the Transportation Security Administration).

    • Dissent or Terror: How Arizona’s Counter Terrorism Apparatus, in Partnership with Corporate Interests, Turned on Occupy Phoenix

      Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, a nationwide “counter terrorism” apparatus emerged. Components of this apparatus include the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (U.S. DHS), the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), ODNI’s “National Counterterrorism Center” (NCTC), and state/regional “fusion centers.”

      “Fusion centers,” by and large, are staffed with personnel working in “counter terrorism”/ “homeland security” units of municipal, county, state, tribal and federal law enforcement/”public safety”/”counter terrorism” agencies. To a large degree, the “counter terrorism” operations of municipal, county, state and tribal agencies engaged in “fusion centers” are financed through a number of U.S. DHS grant programs.

  • Privacy

    • Lawmakers eye regulating domestic surveillance drones

      Amid growing concern over the use of drones by police and government officials for surveillance, a bipartisan group of lawmakers is pushing to limit the use of unmanned surveillance “eyes in the sky” aircraft.

    • Council debates banning drones from Evanston’s skies
    • Weaponized Drones used for Law Enforcement across America: How Your Town Can Stop Drones

      When Charlottesville passed a resolution against drones in February of this year, I heard from people all over the country again. Since that time, to my knowledge, one little town in Minnesota called St. Bonifacius has passed something, while dozens and dozens have tried and failed. The problem seems to be that drones can have good uses as well as bad. Of course, that’s grounds for halting the lawless and reckless spread of drones until we can figure out any ways in which their good use can be compatible with our Constitutional rights. But that would make too much sense. When there’s money to be made, technology to be played with, and terrorists to destroy our freedoms if we don’t hurry up and destroy them first, the American way is full steam ahead. But I actually think I might have at least a partial answer this time.


      …drones armed with rubber bullets and tear gas.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • The Goodman Affair: Monsanto Targets the Heart of Science

      Richard Smith, former editor of the British Medical Journal, has jested that instead of scientific peer review, its rival The Lancet had a system of throwing a pile of papers down the stairs and publishing those that reached the bottom. On another occasion, Smith was challenged to publish an issue of the BMJ exclusively comprising papers that had failed peer review and see if anybody noticed. He replied, “How do you know I haven’t already done it?”

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