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07.24.15

Links 24/7/2015: GNOME 3.17.4, Mozilla Developer Network Turns 10

Posted in News Roundup at 6:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Software Commons

    In this sense, software commons make sense, and because these commons do not effectively exist in some village somewhere in Europe during the Middle Ages, but much rather all over the Internet, they are of primary importance for software and for the world we live in.

  • The real reason Facebook does open source

    On the third day of OSCON, I heard Facebook’s James Pearce deliver one of the convention’s many keynote presentations.

    Pearce explained how Facebook does open source at scale. And according to him, Facebook launches several open source projects every month and has hundreds of engineers supporting those projects on an ongoing basis—all while they’re engaging with communities around the world to make software experiences better.

    But more interesting than how Facebook does this is the question of why they use, support, and release open source projects at a

  • IBM moves open-source business software to the cloud

    IBM has set up a new code repository that aims to foster collaborative development of enterprise open source software — and it may also drum up interest in its own Bluemix platform services.

  • 10 open source storage solutions that might be perfect for your company

    The right storage solution is critical for business, but the price tag can put many options out of reach. Luckily, there’s a host of powerful, scalable open source candidates to choose from.

  • The battle between open-source and proprietary software for drone development

    However, open-source software and hardware has become the platform of choice for developers for next-generation drone technology. Mature alternatives exist in the open-source realm. From OpenPilot to Dronecode, these projects emphasize customizability and offer ways to collaborate on development and support that are not possible with proprietary systems. For every layer of the drone, from flight code to firmware, to vision processing and collision avoidance, there are viable open-source options.

  • Creating The Open-Source Community Of Your Dreams

    When a company decides to embrace open-source software development, releasing the code under a suitable license is only the tip of the iceberg. The real challenge that companies face is learning how to attract and collaborate with contributors.

  • Monoid Is an Open Source Font That’s Perfect for Coders

    Monoid, designed by Andreas Larsen, is designed to be sleek and precise. Every single character in Monoid’s library has been designed by Larsen to be beyond easy to tell apart, so you don’t ever have to worry about confusing thetas, o’s, O’s, and 0’s (zeros). The font is also monospaced (each character takes up the same width), so it makes it easy to skim your code and spot any errors that might be fudging things up. The spacing between the characters is small, however, so you can fit as much as you need into a line of code. What makes Monoid even better is the fact that it’s alive. Since it’s an open source font, it can be adjusted and perfected over time by the very people that use it. You can check out Monoid at the link below.

  • A non-coder CAN contribute to open source

    Non programmers can write docs. They can design logos. They can help with user interface design. They can test fixes or new features. They can triage bugs by verifying that the submitted report can be recreated and adding additional details, logs, or config files. Larger projects need some infrastructure support that is more administration and security compliance than Java programmer. Many people who consider themselves non-programmers do have some pretty good scripting skills and can assist with packaging for distributions.

  • The Open Source Initiative Announces Linux Professional Institute Affiliate Membership

    Leading vendor-independent Linux certification organization extends commitment to furthering the adoption of Linux and Open Source.

  • Events

    • OSCON: Purism Respects Your Rights & Freedom

      At OSCON, Purism has on hand the Librem 13 and Librem 15 laptops – the numbers designating the screen size (13-inch and 15-inch, respectively) — which are both designed, chip-by-chip and line-by-line to respect your rights to privacy, security and freedom, which is Purism’s philosophy.

    • OSCON: From the Expo Floor

      Like many of the Linux/FOSS events that dot the calendar year, OSCON resembles that — Bonnaroo without the mosh pit (though now that I’ve written that, let’s see if something like that appears in Austin next year) — but along with the camaraderie there’s also an element of “high school reunion” in the mix.

    • OSCON Report: Big Blue Goes Big for FOSS

      “Big Blue” unveiled a new platform for developers to collaborate with IBM on a newly released set of open source technologies. IBM plans to release 50 projects to the open source community to speed adoption in the enterprise sector and spur a new class of cloud innovations around mobile and analytics, among other areas.

    • Open Container Project Gets New Name, Sees Member Growth
  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • MDN celebrates 10 years of documenting YOUR Web

        Today, Mozilla proudly celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Mozilla Developer Network, one of the richest and also one of the few multilingual resources on the Web for documentation. It started in February 2005, when a small team dedicated to the open Web took DevEdge (Netscape’s developer materials) and set out to create an open, free, community-built online resource for all Web developers. Just a couple of months later, on 23 July, 2005 the original MDN wiki site launched and has evolved steadily ever since for the convenience and the benefit of its users.

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Founder of GNU bestows blessing upon open source crowdfunding site

      Richard Stallman, the founder of the Free Software Foundation and the GNU Project known by many in the open source worlds as rms, is not the sort of person you’d expect to endorse a product. But Stallman and the FSF have formed a partnership of sorts with Crowd Supply, a crowdfunding company that has been largely focused on open source hardware and software projects.

  • Project Releases

    • Linux: man-pages-4.01 is released

      I’ve released man-pages-4.01. The release tarball is available on kernel.org. The browsable online pages can be found on man7.org. The Git repository for man-pages is available on kernel.org.

      This release resulted from patches, bug reports,and comments from nearly 50 contributors. As well as a large number of minor fixes to over 100 man pages, the more significant changes in man-pages-4.01 include the following.

  • Public Services/Government

    • France publishes free software procurement templates

      The French government has published templates to be used by procurement officers when requesting free software-based ICT solutions. The templates include intellectual property clauses, and clarify the specifics of the free software environment.

  • Licensing

    • QEMU is Conservancy’s Newest Member Project

      Today, Software Freedom Conservancy proudly welcomes QEMU, the generic machine emulator and virtualizer, as a member project. QEMU is now one of many free and open source software projects who call Conservancy their non-profit corporate home.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • The missing discovery: CSIR’s open source drug development making waves everywhere except India

      It is an idea that has not set the country on fire, but has been noticed all over the world. For a few years now, it has been knocking at the doors of international technology awards, but losing out in the end to far more extraordinary innovations. It has also been among the few, if not the only, ideas from India to get an entire session at an American Chemical Society meeting. It is called the Open Source Drug Discovery (OSDD) model. With a bit of luck and commitment, it could break new ground in drug discovery and development.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • The French want to BAN .doc and .xls files from Le Gouvernement

      Microsoft could get the boot from the French government if a new recommendation from an official advisor is adopted.

      DISIC (Direction interministérielle des systèmes d’information et de communication de l’État) has recommended that French authorities ditch Microsoft Office tools in favour of the Open Document Format (ODF).

      DISIC is responsible for harmonising and reducing the costs of all state computers, including government ministries, state and regional departments and local authorities, and sees ODF as the best way to make them all interoperable.

      According to sources, an initial draft of the report envisaged outlawing Microsoft’s Open XML altogether, although with some agencies using tools specifically developed for use with Open XML, DISIC relented.

Leftovers

  • President Obama says the European Union is stronger with the United Kingdom

    Barack Obama has urged the United Kingdom to stay with the European Union.

    The US President also said that the UK is his nation’s “best partner” during an interview with the BBC on Thursday.

    “Having the United Kingdom in the European Union gives us much greater confidence about the strength of the transatlantic union,” he said during an interview with the broadcaster before his visit to Kenya.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • “Funding Terror”: Fox News Baselessly Fearmongers About Seattle’s Home Loans For Muslims

      Co-host Steve Doocy later worried that the loans amounted to “discrimination” in favor of Muslims, while network analyst Peter Johnson, Jr, said that it “opens up a lot of questions” such as concerns about “legitimatizing a law that is really inimical to American values.”

    • Fox Cites Misleading Anecdotes About Workers On Welfare To Attack Minimum Wage Increases

      A Fox News report on the so-called “unintended consequences” of Seattle, Washington’s municipal minimum wage increase included the unsubstantiated claim that better pay is encouraging workers to work less so that they stay in poverty and continue receiving government benefits. This report fits the network’s anti-minimum wage, poor-shaming narrative, but ignores the many benefits of increasing the minimum wage.

    • Comcast Really Wants Me To Stop Calling Their Top Lobbyist A ‘Top Lobbyist’

      Comcast executive David Cohen is, by dictionary definition, a lobbyist. And not just any lobbyist; a gushing profile piece by the Washington Post in 2012 called him a “wonk rock star” and the company’s “secret weapon,” who uses “his vast network of high-powered contacts” to help craft Comcast-friendly regulations and apply pressure on DC policy makers. You know, a lobbyist. Unless you’re Comcast, which has now e-mailed me repeatedly to demand I stop calling him that.

  • Privacy

    • Empower consumers to control their privacy in the Internet of Everything

      As an Eisenhower Fellow, Dr. David A. Bray had the opportunity to travel to Taiwan and Australia in a personal capacity to discuss the burgeoning privacy and security challenges that the Internet of Everything era presents. Throughout his meetings, everyone asked: who is responsible for ensuring security? Answering as an Eisenhower Fellow in a personal capacity, Bray was always quick to answer: Everyone is.

  • Civil Rights

    • The Transcript Of Sandra Bland’s Arrest Is As Revealing As The Video

      During the traffic stop that led to her arrest and, ultimately, her death in a Texas jail, Sandra Bland repeatedly questioned the decisions of state Trooper Brian Encinia and asserted rights she said Encinia was violating.

      A close look at the police car dashcam video that recorded the exchange shows her questions had merit: Encinia at every occasion escalates the tension. He tells Bland, a Black Lives Matter activist, she’s under arrest before she has even left her car, shouts at her for moving after ordering her to move, refuses to answer questions about why she’s being arrested and, out of the camera’s view, apparently slams her to the ground. He gets testy with her — “Are you done?” — when she explains after he points out she seems irritated. And, contrary to a recent Supreme Court decision, he unconstitutionally extends the traffic stop, it appears, out of spite.

    • Guantanamo Prisoner Balks at Working With Defense Lawyers

      A Guantanamo prisoner balked at working with his defense lawyers due to a possible conflict of interest Wednesday, prompting an indefinite recess in his pretrial hearing in Cuba.

      Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi told the military judge Wednesday he wished to stop conferring with the two lawyers assigned to his case, at least temporarily. During the recess, prosecutors will try to arrange a meeting between al-Hadi and one of his former attorneys in hopes of resolving the issue.

    • Blame the Police

      Sandra Bland’s arrest and death are a national scandal. The police are responsible.

    • The Eroding Character of the American People

      Attorney John W. Whitehead opens a recent posting (see below) on his Rutherford Institute website with these words from a song by Bob Dylan. Why don’t all of us feel ashamed? Why only Bob Dylan?

      I wonder how many of Bob Dylan’s fans understand what he is telling them. American justice has nothing to do with innocence or guilt. It only has to do with the prosecutor’s conviction rate, which builds his political career. Considering the gullibility of the American people, American jurors are the last people to whom an innocent defendant should trust his fate. The jury will betray the innocent almost every time.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Is Amazon Liable For IP Violations By Its Marketplace Vendors?

      Animal-shaped pillows are cute and fluffy, except when they spur litigation. Recently, the Milo & Gabby brand sued Amazon for IP infringement because merchants allegedly sold knockoffs of its “Cozy Companion Pillowcases.” Amazon has successfully avoided IP liability for its marketplace, and a recent ruling rejected most of Milo & Gabby’s claims. However, a key piece of Milo & Gabby’s claim survived Amazon’s dismissal attempt, leaving the possibility that Amazon could be liable for merchants’ IP violations.

    • Copyrights

      • EU Starts Geo-Blocking Antitrust Case Against U.S Movie Studios

        The European Union has today launched an antitrust investigation against several large U.S. movie studios and Sky UK. The European Commission wants to abolish geographical restrictions and has sent a statement of objections over the geo-blocking practices of six major US film studios including Disney, Paramount Pictures and Warner Bros.

      • Movie studios keep asking Google to remove pirated content on their own computers

        Google search results sometimes include a tiny message at the bottom that some sites have been removed for sharing pirated content.

        Those requests come from movie studios and other content rights holders who manually submit links to be taken down.

        What’s pretty hilarious is movie studios have been submitting takedown requests that include links to pirated content stored on their own desktop computers.

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