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01.13.12

Links 13/1/2012: CrossOver 11, Mageia 2 Alpha 3

Posted in News Roundup at 9:32 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • TLWIR 30: Linux++ – The GNU/Linux Desktop, Brother, and Ubuntu Increment by One
  • Desktop

    • Six Great Desktop Linux Features You May Take for Granted

      Maybe it’s just a sign that I’m getting old, but more and more often lately I’ve found myself thinking thoughts like, “Back in my day, Linux didn’t have X, Y and Z. We did without!” With these sentiments in mind, I decided to put together a list of a few major desktop Linux technologies that millions of users now take for granted, but which didn’t exist only a few years ago. Read on for a look.

      First, though, I should caution that this isn’t a paean to desktop Linux’s infallibility. There certainly remains a lot of room for improvement in the Linux experience, both on the desktop and beyond. But that said, it’s also worth recognizing the clear progress that has been made over the course of the last several years, bringing innovations that — if you’re like me — you may now simply take for granted.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Kernel Log: 15,000,000 lines, 3.0 promoted to long-term kernel

      With the merger of the first changes into Linux 3.3, the number of lines of kernel source code has passed through the 15 million mark. Maintenance of Linux 2.6.32 is set to end in one month’s time, while Linux 3.0 and real-time kernels based on it will be maintained for the next two years.

    • The Pull That Finally Fixes ASPM Power Regression
    • Finding the Fastest Filesystem, 2012 Edition
    • The logger meets linux-kernel

      Toward the end of December, LWN looked at the new push to move various subsystems specific to Android kernels into the mainline. There seems to be broad agreement that merging this code makes sense, but that agreement becomes rather less clear once the discussion moves to the merging of specific subsystems. Tim Bird’s request for comments on the Android “logger” mechanism shows that, even with a relatively simple piece of code, there is still a lot of room for disagreement and problems can turn out to be larger than expected.

    • Linux kernel exceeds 15 million lines of code
    • Big Switch Networks Open Sources OpenFlow Controller Software

      Network virtualization startup Big Switch Networks this week confirmed the release of an open-source controller based on OpenFlow, the increasingly popular switching and communications protocol that addresses packet routing on a software layer that’s separate from a network’s physical infrastructure.

    • Arch-ing ARM: Running Arch Linux On The NVIDIA Tegra 2

      The CompuLab Trim-Slice is quite an interesting dual-core ARM Tegra 2 device. This nettop/desktop-oriented system ships with Ubuntu 11.04 by default, but it is also well supported by Arch Linux. In this article are some tests of the dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 1.0GHz system running under Arch.

    • Graphics Stack

      • Announcing The DRM VGEM – Virtual GEM Provider

        Alpha quality patches were published today that introduce the “Virtual GEM Provider” for the Linux kernel DRM, which can improve the software-based acceleration experience for graphics.

        First some history… Back in September the Softpipe driver for Gallium3D became slightly more useful when GLX_EXT_texture_from_pixmap support came for software drivers, which is needed for some compositing window managers to function. In October that support then came to the LLVMpipe driver, which is the more useful software-based graphics driver since it takes advantage of LLVM for real-time shader generation and can take better advantage of modern CPUs to deliver slightly better performance.

      • Radeon Gallium3D With Mesa 8.0: Goes Up & Down
      • r600-r800 2D tiling
      • Mesa 8.0 LLVMpipe: Fine For Desktop, Not For Gaming

        Continuing in the coverage of the soon-to-be-out Mesa 8.0, here are some benchmarks of the CPU-based LLVMpipe software driver for Gallium3D.

        LLVMpipe is the CPU-based software rasterizer driver that is faster than the standard Gallium3D “Softpipe” since it leverages LLVM for taking advantage of more of the CPU — especially on modern hardware with SSE3/SSE4, multiple cores, etc. See LLVMpipe: OpenGL With Gallium3D on Your CPU and Gallium3D LLVMpipe On The Sandy Bridge Extreme for just a small portion of the Phoronix coverage of this unique software driver.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Review: Razor-Qt 0.4.0 (via Ubuntu Razor-Qt Remix)

      It seems like the recent discontent over GNOME 3 and Unity has caused a renaissance in DEs that act more traditionally. Xfce is gaining popularity as it basically replicates GNOME 2.X and can do even more now, while KDE is winning over users attracted to its shininess and power. LXDE is also gaining attention as a DE that pushes the limit of how stripped-down a DE can be before it is just a WM again, while Enlightenment seems to be gaining renewed interest thanks to Bodhi Linux. Linux Mint has modified GNOME 3 through MGSE, and now it is replacing GNOME 3/Shell with GNOME 3/Cinnamon. Yet only one of these alternatives (KDE) uses the Qt toolkit; save Enlightenment, which uses the E17 toolkit, all the others use GTK+. Until now.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • January 2012 Issue Of The PCLinuxOS Magazine
      • Mageia 2 A3 Released, Joins systemd Bandwagon

        From the Mageia 2 Alpha 3 release notes, “Following the standardisation effort going on in other distributions, Mageia has decided to adopt systemd for booting. This would lead to a simpler boot process, and easier maintenance. More details can be found on the systemd website. The option of keeping the current init system will be offered for people who prefer to wait a little and switch with a next release.”

      • Here comes Mageia 2 Alpha3!
      • Mageia 2 Inches Along with Another Alpha

        Anne Nicolas announced the release of Mageia 2 Alpha 3 today. With plans of using the latest of major software packages, the alpha ships with some of the latest packages available. The release plans include KDE 4.8, GNOME 3.4, Linux 3.3, MariaDB 5.5, and systemd.

    • Gentoo Family

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • People Behind Debian: Steve McIntyre, debian-cd maintainer, former Debian Project Leader

        Steve McIntyre has been contributing to Debian since 1996, 2 years before I joined! But I quickly stumbled upon Steve: in 1999, he was struggling with getting his debian-cd script to produce 2 ISO images (it was the first time that Debian did no longer fit on a single CD), I helped him by rewriting debian-cd with a robust system to split packages on as many ISO images as required.

      • Derivatives

        • Simply SimplyMEPIS 11.0

          I had heard of this Linux distribution a long time ago. Different readers who commented on my blog mentioned it. But I continued postponing a review of it all for a long time. The last time the Mepis name was dropped was during my interview with Geek-in-Pink who mentioned this distribution as her favourite.
          The time has come.

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu TV: the case for Unity
          • CES: hands on with Ubuntu TV

            Canonical is showing here at CES Ubuntu TV: a version of its Linux OS aimed at televisions (as the sharper among you may have spotted from the name). Ubuntu TV is still in beta – a spokesman told us it was really ‘more of an alpha’ – but it could be available on retail products within the next 12 months.

          • Canonical seeking testers for Unity 5.0

            The Unity development team at Canonical has published a development build aimed at testers of version 5.0 of its custom desktop interface for the Ubuntu Linux distribution. Users running the current Ubuntu 12.04 LTS “Precise Pangolin” alpha can install the preview release by manually adding the Unity PPA, which is hosted on the Unity Team’s Launchpad.net page.

          • Becoming an Ubuntu Contributing Developer
          • Running a File System Check
          • My BirthDay Wish List
          • HOWTO: Bodhi Linux on Genesi Smartbook
          • Ubuntu Unity 5.0 is out and ready for testing

            Are you a cutting edge Ubuntu user that’s been using Precise Pangolin since it was made available December 1? If you are, you’ll want to try out the just-released Unity 5.0. It’s an absolute test version, and you won’t want to install it on your production machine, but if you’re running 12.04 we’ll assume you’re already running a test box, so let’s dig into the process and changes.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Raspberry Pi makes the sub-$100 PC a reality

      One of the biggest pieces of tech news last year was the development of a $25 PC by a charity in the UK known as the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Producing a fully-functional PC capable of running Linux, Quake III-quality games, and 1080p video is no small feat.

    • Texas Instruments demos OMAP 5 processors

      TI (Texas Instruments) used this week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) to demonstrate its freshly minted OMAP 5 processor, which it claims will be the first ARM Cortex-A15 product on the market. Shown off on an Android 4.0 smartphone reference platform, the SoC (system on chip) will support both tablets and thin-and-light notebooks, the chipmaker promised.

    • Phones

      • Leaked screenshots reveal new details on Nokia N9 MeeGo update

        New details on the forthcoming MeeGo update for Nokia N9 users have just emerged this morning, courtesy of a batch of leaked screenshots and firmware information. Originally posted by a user on talk.maemo.org, the shots point to many upcoming functions with which Android and iOS users are already familiar, including copy-paste browser support and a notably iOS-like folder layout. Also included in the screenshots are support for video calls and tweaks to the OS’ camera and gallery apps, though details remain unclear. Equally unclear is the release date for PR1.2, though the screenshots cite a build date of January 30th, so it may very well be nearing.

      • Tizen OS alpha released, may debut on Samsung I9500 smartphone

        The Linux Foundation’s Tizen project has previewed an alpha version of its MeeGo and LiMo-based mobile operating system and SDK. The HTML5-oriented release — including components from the carrier-backed WAC interoperability standards and the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries — follows rumors of Intel-based Tizen tablets, plus a screenshot leak that suggests an appearance on an upcoming Samsung I9500 phone.

      • gStrings in Your Pocket

        What may sound like a perverse concept is actually one of the many ways smartphones can change your life. If you play a musical instrument but don’t happen to have perfect pitch (most of us, sadly), you can buy a tuner, pitch pipe, tuning fork or any number of other aids to keep yourself in tune. If you have a smartphone in your pocket, however, you also can simply download gStrings. Available in the Android Marketplace in either a free ad-supported version or an inexpensive ad-free version, gStrings will help you tune any number of instruments accurately.

      • Android

        • Android Fragmentation Debate Could be Red Herring

          As new Android flavors develop, particularly with the new version developed by Amazon for the Amazon Fire, the debate rages over whether fragmentation is actually a problem for developers or a red herring introduced as open source FUD.

          Just this week at the Consumer Electronics Show, Eric Schmidt, Google Executive Chairman tried to tamp down any concerns about fragmentation saying that it was about freedom for developers and handset manufacturers to compete on what he calls differentiation.

        • Parrot unveils new auto systems, updates quadricopter with Android support

          Parrot announced three new versions of its Android-based Asteroid in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) platform: a 3.2-inch Asteroid CK Bluetooth hands-free system, a five-inch Asteroid Nav navigation system, and the Asteroid 2DIN multimedia car radio. Parrot also announced a revised 2.0 version of its Linux-based Parrot AR Drone “quadricopter” flying drone that can now be flown with an Android phone.

        • Polaroid unveils Android-based camera with 16 megapixels and 3x zoom

          Polaroid announced an Android-based, 16-megapixel camera with a 3.2-inch touchscreen, Android Market access, and Wi-Fi for quick uploads to social networks. The Polaroid SC1630 Smart Camera offers 3x optical zoom, 5x digital zoom, geo-tagging, and automatic face and smile detection — but response time isn’t exactly “instant,” according to one preview.

        • Original ASUS Transformer to Receive ICS Update Soon?

          Android 4.0 a.k.a Ice Cream Sandwich is nowadays what every Android fanboy dreams about. We are all looking forward to more ICS powered devices like Galaxy Nexus and Transformer Prime. However, we shouldn’t forget devices that were launched last year and are expected to receive the ICS update!

        • Fun with selective memory: “Dell Streak? What Dell Streak?”

          Oh. It was Dell. Oddly, the Dell CCO seems reluctant to mention the Streak, instead talking up future products with “We have been taking our time.” (Time to recover from the Streak, you mean.) Sadly, WebProNews doesn’t catch the omission either, and dully remarks that it’s “surprising that Dell has not entered into the tablet business”. (Entered it without crashing and burning, you mean.)

          WebProNews gives its source as Reuters, whose article does mention the Streak – though so quickly you’ll miss it if you pause to spoon more corn flakes. After that gloss, Reuters simply goes along with the ruse that the Streak never happened. “Dell Inc intends to launch its first consumer tablet computer in late 2012″, proclaims the article. First?

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open source or proprietary software, which way to go?

    In the past week, the Kenyan media has been awash with reports that cyber cafes are ditching proprietary software for the perceived cheaper and user-friendly open source software.

  • Events

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • CMS

    • Missing the Point of WordPress Entirely

      A post by Kevinjohn Gallagher on “no longer recommending WordPress” to his clients has gotten a bit of traction lately. While there’s legitimate criticism to be leveled at WordPress, Gallagher’s isn’t (for the most part) it. If you’re approaching WordPress with the expectation that it’s the be-all and end-all of content management systems (CMSes) you’re going to be sorely disappointed. And frankly, I hope WordPress never tries to fit the ridiculous list of requirements that Gallagher tries to saddle it with.

  • Education

    • SBDC offers free open-source software classes

      The Maricopa Community Colleges Small Business Development Center is launching a series of classes to teach entrepreneurs how to use free open-source software to manage their business operations.

      The program is being funded by a $60,000 grant from Hewlett-Packard Development Co. LP.

    • MLK and Open Source: 2 Degrees of Separation

      On Tuesday evening, my teen daughter and I had some quality bonding time over milkshakes and the first season of Star Trek, which was timely considering the conversation I’d have the next day with a couple of NASA employees.

      In my Wednesday phone interview for an article I was writing about the new NASA open source outreach efforts, I asked William Eshagh, a technologist working on Open Government and the Nebula Cloud Computing Platform out of the NASA Ames Research Center, about the efforts NASA makes to help increase diversity in the STEM fields.

  • Business

  • BSD

    • FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE Announcement

      The FreeBSD Release Engineering Team is pleased to announce the availability of FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE. This is the first release from the stable/9 branch, which improves on stable/8 and adds many new features. Some of the highlights:

  • Public Services/Government

  • Openness/Sharing

    • ‘Open-source’ robotic surgery platform going to top medical research labs
    • Open Source Surgery, a Robot called Raven takes Flight

      A multidisciplinary team of engineers from the University of Washington and the University of California, Santa Cruz have developed a surgical robot, called Raven 2, for use as an open source surgical robotics research platform. Seven units of the Raven 2 will be made available to researchers at Harvard , Johns Hopkins, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of California, Berkeley, and the University of California, Los Angeles, while the remaining two systems will remain at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and the University of Washington.

    • Scary science, national security, and open-source research

      I’ve been following the story about the scientists who have been working to figure out how H5N1 bird flu might become transmissible from human to human, the controversial research they used to study that question, and the federal recommendations that are now threatening to keep that research under wraps. This is a pretty complicated issue, and I want to take a minute to help you all better understand what’s going on, and what it means. It’s a story that encompasses not just public health and science ethics, but also some of the debates surrounding free information and the risk/benefit ratio of open-source everything.

    • Open Hardware

      • Weekend Project: Learning Ins and Outs of Arduino

        Arduino is an open embedded hardware and software platform designed for rapid creativity. It’s both a great introduction to embedded programming and a fast track to building all kinds of cool devices like animatronics, robots, fabulous blinky things, animated clothing, games, your own little fabs… you can build what you imagine. Follow along as we learn both embedded programming and basic electronics.

Leftovers

  • Why You Need Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

    Infrastructure as a Service is that part of cloud computing that allows you to lease and manage computing infrastructure for your business needs. Computing infrastructure includes virtual machines (VMs), operating systems, middleware, runtime components, network, storage, data and applications. Cloud computing vendors provide the necessary underlying physical hardware (servers, network, storage) that they own and manage transparently in the background. The two worlds have little crossover. The cloud vendor and customer have a non-intrusive relationship with one another just as you currently do with your web hosting provider. They’re there when you need help but their direct involvement in your business is zero.

  • ISC Seeks Wider Input for BIND 10

    The Internet Systems Consortium is looking for a few more good programmers to bring the next generation of its open source BIND DNS server software to fruition.

  • Finance

    • Goldman Sachs Loses Another Demographic

      I went and found the prospectus and it’s fascinating for someone, like me, whose understanding of Islamic finance basically comes from Wikipedia. Now, even I know that the basic idea of a sukuk is to replicate a fixed income, or let’s say not-quite-common-equity-anyway, financial instrument without the use of “interest,” because interest is forbidden under Shari’a law. This, actually, is a topic close to my heart, because it turns out that in regular old American law sometimes “interest” is also forbidden, and by “forbidden” I mean “taxed,” which means that people who do what I used to do have certain incentives to turn things that look like taxable interest into things that look like non-taxable equity returns and vice versa. One thing you learn in that line of work is that it’s in large part the business of defeating substance with form: you pay for the use of money over time, but fall into some category of “paying for money over time” that isn’t what that is normally called, viz. “interest.” There are ways to do that in American tax law (one is called “option premium,” true story), and there are apparently ways to do it under Islamic law (one is called “murabaha,” which is what GS is aiming at here, and it’s basically the equivalent of “getting paid a fee for brokering a commodity transaction with forward settlement”).

      It’s unclear if Goldman achieved that here. People have said that the Goldman sukuk does and does not* comply with Islamic law, and I am the last person in the world to weigh in on that, so whatevs. Apparently there’s at least controversy. And here’s the thing: when you are in a line of work that exists to privilege form over substance, you really really have to get the form right. Implying that you’ve gotten signoff from people who you haven’t gotten signoff from is … unhelpful.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Internet Opens Up to All Names

      Every since the very beginning of the Internet, new top level domains (TLD) have been added incrementally. Currently the number of TLDs stands at 22, but thanks to a process that begins today that number could be over 1,000 by this time next year.

    • Senator Leahy Hopes To Rush Through PIPA By Promising To Study DNS Blocking… Later?!?
    • Refusing REFUSED

      The U.S. Congress’ road to Stopping Online Piracy (SOPA) and PROTECT IP (PIPA) has had some twists and turns due to technical constraints imposed by the basic design of the Internet’s Domain Name System (DNS). PIPA’s (and SOPA’s) provisions regarding advertising and payment networks appear to be well grounded in the law enforcement tradition called following the money, but other provisions having to do with regulating American Internet Service Providers (ISPs) so as to block DNS resolution for pirate or infringing web sites have been shown to be ineffectual, impractical, and sometimes unintelligible.

      For example an early draft of this legislative package called for DNS redirection of malicious domain names in conflict with the end-to-end DNS Security system (DNSSEC). Any such redirection would be trivially detected as a man in the middle attack by secure clients and would thus be indistinguishable from the kind of malevolent attacks that DNSSEC is designed to prevent. After the impossibility of redirection was shown supporters of PIPA and SOPA admitted that redirection (for example, showing an “FBI Warning” page when an American consumer tried to access a web site dedicated to piracy or infringement) was not actually necessary. Their next idea was no better: to return a false No Such Domain (NXDOMAIN) signal. When the DNS technical community pointed out that NXDOMAIN had the same end-to-end security as a normal DNS answer and that false NXDOMAIN would be detected and rejected by secure clients the supporters SOPA and PIPA changed their proposal once again.

    • CreativeAmerica Denies Copying; Inadvertently Shows Why SOPA/PIPA Are Dangerous

      Either Hoffman didn’t understand what happened or he’s being purposely misleading (neither of which makes CreativeAmerica look very competent). No one is complaining about them sending out an email urging supporters to contact Senators. What they’re complaining about is that the text is almost identical, and uses the same three bullet points that folks at Public Knowledge admit they “over-edited” internally, including a long discussion that turned what had formerly been a paragraph into three separate bullet points.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • The Public Access Recast: new broad IPR exemption to transparency

      In other words, they created a broader IPR exemption to transparency to make it more difficult to obtain information and found that IPR as an argument could be easier applied to deny access to documents. I wonder why Parliament under its rapporteur MEP Michael Cashman did not attempt to revert it.

    • Copyrights

      • SOPA: A Bad Cop’s Best Friend

        In ever-increasing numbers, law enforcement is finding itself on the receiving end of the camera. Every low-end cellphone comes equipped with a still camera at the very least, and most have the ability to capture video. With a large percentage of the population equipped to document their interactions with law enforcement, hundreds of taped encounters have surfaced, most of them capturing policemen behaving badly.

      • Firefighters For SOPA (Again): The Congressional Fire Services Institute Rehashes Cliches And Debunked Anecdotes

        Another pro-SOPA/PROTECT-IP op-ed detailing the horrors wrought by “rogue sites” has appeared at The Hill. This time, it’s William Jenaway of the Congressional Fire Services Institute decrying the ready availability of counterfeits goods and the risk to “public safety” these items pose.

        It opens with the usual “the internet is wonderful but mostly it’s a den of thieves” rhetorical device before wading into the shallowest waters of the overused “appeal to patriotism” argument, stating that “Foreign-owned, rogue websites are increasingly selling counterfeit products to U.S. consumers,” reminding us yet again that xenophobia and lousy legislation still go hand-in-hand far too frequently.

      • Apparently, Someone Forgot To Tell Reality That The Entertainment Industry Was Dying

        We hear it all the time: the entertainment industry legacy players insist that the world is ending, jobs are going away, and that they need new laws like SOPA and PIPA or it’s all over. That’s why SOPA & PIPA are being positioned as jobs bills. Especially popular are the major labels and the big Hollywood studios insisting that they’re really doing this not to save their own companies from having to adapt, but to protect the poor, poor indie creator, who is totally being destroyed by those evil online pirates. We hear time and time again about how it’s really the “indie” folks who are being decimated.

      • Jazz Pioneer ‘Jelly Roll’ Morton’s Music Finally Free For Re-use In Europe — A Hundred Years Too Late

        A recent Techdirt post reminded us that thanks to its crazy copyright laws, the US won’t be seeing anything new in the public domain for many years. But even in those “fortunate” countries that get to use cultural works a mere 70 years after the creator’s death, the situation is still pretty absurd.

      • How Much Do Music and Movie Piracy Really Hurt the U.S. Economy?

        Supporters of stronger intellectual property enforcement — such as those behind the proposed new Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) bills in Congress — argue that online piracy is a huge problem, one which costs the U.S. economy between $200 and $250 billion per year, and is responsible for the loss of 750,000 American jobs.

01.12.12

Links 12/1/2012: Intel Wants Tablets Market, New ODF Version

Posted in News Roundup at 5:36 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Three Priorities For Open-Source Radeon Graphics

        While we still haven’t been able to deliver any Radeon HD 7000 series Linux benchmarks, we do know what are AMD’s three priority projects right now for their open-source Radeon Linux driver stack.

        The three priorities right now for AMD and their open-source Linux driver stack come down to Southern Islands support, OpenCL, and UVD/video. If you’re part of the Phoronix Forums community, this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise since it was there where this information was first shared.

  • Applications

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • 11 useful commands for Linux/Unix administrators
      • Updating the ROM in Your Mobile Device

        Follow the forum instructions carefully, because it’s possible to brick the device. Often, the first release day of any community-released code will be athwart with danger — the experimenters that day know it and like the thrill. We don’t. The first day of a recent Google TV upgrade bricked numerous devices. As a beginner, wait a few days after a release for the kinks to get ironed out, and always reads the forums carefully.

  • Distributions

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Tame the Ubuntu 11.10 Unity interface with MyUnity

            The new interface introduced with the latest version of Ubuntu has had a mixed response. MyUnity offers an easy way to change some of the visual settings. This can make the Launcher and Unity in general easier to use as well as that satisfaction in having it set up exactly as you want.

          • Hands-on with Ubuntu TV, above and under the hood

            At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas on Monday, platform vendor Canonical unveiled a special version of Ubuntu that is designed for televisions. The platform has an integrated media library manager and will offer DVR capabilities. It includes a variant of the Unity shell that is intended to be operated with a television remote control.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Linux Mint 12 KDE screen shot preview

              The first release candidate of Linux Mint 12 KDE was made available for download yesterday, but do not be surprised if the “stable” version is released next week. While we await that, here are a few screen shots for your viewing pleasure.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • CMOS camera platform from Kappa Optronics enables motion detection

      The CMOS camera platform transmits image data directly to the monitor via HDMI/DVI or is directly saved on the memory card. The processor and the embedded Linux operating system are directly on-board. The platform provides high-definition live streams, up to 5 Mpixels, with a maximum 20 frames/s. Facial recognition and motion detection may also be implemented.

    • Diminutive, Linux-based Raspberry Pi Computer Heads to Production

      The tiny motherboard seen in the photo here forms the core of the Raspberry Pi computer, which has generated a lot of interest, as we originally noted here. Last month, as both CNet and Business Insider noted, the Raspberry Pi ultra low-cost computer was moving toward the manufacturing stage. It’s designed to run Linux via an ARM processor, and there will reportedly be versions available for $25 and $35. Now, there is word that manufacturing has begun, and there are more details about this diminutive, low-cost, yet surprisingly powerful computing device.

    • Raspberry Pi PCs are being built

      FIFTEEN QUID Raspberry Pi computers are being manufactured and will soon be on sale.

      Sadly, perhaps, the home grown PC on a USB stick is being made overseas due to a desire to keep costs down.

    • Phones

      • Tizen OS alpha released, may debut on Samsung I9500 smartphone

        The Linux Foundation’s Tizen project has previewed an alpha version of its MeeGo and LiMo-based mobile operating system and SDK. The HTML5-oriented release — including components from the carrier-backed WAC interoperability standards and the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries — follows rumors of Intel-based Tizen tablets, plus a screenshot leak that suggests an appearance on an upcoming Samsung I9500 phone.

      • Intel Teases Tasty Tizen Tablets

        Remember Tizen? You know, Intel’s Linux-based OS, which evolved from MeeGo when Nokia bailed. Surprise: It’s one of three OSes Intel is hoping to get onto tablets this year, along with the better-known Windows 8 and Android 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich.”

        “In our tablet business, we made a commitment to move a lot faster,” said Mark Miller, director of marketing for Intel’s netbook and tablet segments. “We have a lot of room to make up.”

        Here at CES, that includes showing off a slim, light Lenovo Android-powered tablet that runs on Intel’s new Medfield Atom Z2460 chipset. The Lenovo tablet (shown at left) is under 9mm thick and runs for up to eight hours on a charge. It’ll be coming midyear, Miller said.

      • Android

        • HDMI Dongle: Portable set-top box runs Android 4

          HDMI Dongle is an Open Source, USB-sized set-top box from Always Innovating, a technology outfit based in San Francisco, CA USA. A TV on a stick, it is designed to turn any TV with USB and HDMI ports into a connected TV running Android 4. Like the Cotton Candy, it has an HDMI and a USB port. The magic comes via the HDMI port, while the USB port is to power the device from the TV it is attached to.

          The hardware specs of the device are: Texas Instruments Cortex-A9 OMAP 4 processor (1.0 GHz to 1.8 GHz), 1 GB RAM, a microSD slot, and Wi-Fi and Bluetooth modules. It comes with a simple remote control that has voice control and Near Field Communication (NFC) capabilities. On the software side, it “can run Android Ice Scream Sandwich and is technically compatible with Google TV.”

        • AT&T offers HTML5 SDK for third-party mobile Web app developers

          AT&T is planning to launch a store for mobile Web applications that run in the browser. The company has released a set of JavaScript APIs and a software development kit (SDK) that provide Web developers with access to certain mobile network features.

Free Software/Open Source

  • High-quality scientific graphics with MathGL: An interview with Alexey Balakin

    F4S: What is MathGL?

    Alexey: MathGL is …

    * a library for making high-quality scientific graphics under Linux and Windows;
    * a library for the fast data plotting and data processing of large data arrays;
    * a library for working in window and console modes and for easy embedding into other programs;
    * a library with large and growing set of graphics.

  • SMEs opt for free and open source software to cut costs

    Free and open source software is steadily growing in popularity in Kenya as firms move to cut costs and achieve more customised technology solutions.

    Many companies particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have adopted free and open source software (FOSS) to power their systems in the wake of increasing costs and shrinking IT budgets.

    Adoption of FOSS is also seen as a promising solution to software piracy in countries like Kenya.

  • Google Maps Pricing Sends Real Estate Site to Open Source

    In October Google announced pricing for its popular Google Maps API. Though most sites won’t hit the free limits, those with a lot of traffic may be scrambling for a solution. That was the case for a New York real estate service, which discovered their bill would be $200,000 – $300,000 per year.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Oracle fills another gap in its big data offering

      With Oracle’s announcement of general availability of the big data appliance, it is filling in the blanks by disclosing that it is OEM’ing Cloudera’s CDH Hadoop distribution, and more importantly, the management tooling that is key to its revenue stream.

  • Education

    • For Mobile Strategies, Open Source Offers Flexibility

      As universities transition to a mobile-friendly campus, more and more IT departments are considering the benefits of open source technology. Cost is definitely a factor, but schools are just as attracted to the flexibility that open source gives them.

      When the University of Chicago (IL) first introduced mobile technology two years ago, a key goal was to launch a product as soon as possible. Developer skills for mobile apps were hard to come by, so it made sense to go with a vendor. “It was faster to have a turnkey product,” explains Cornelia Bailey, user experience consultant for IT Services. Today, the mobile landscape and the university’s thinking have changed. The original product is now “not flexible enough” for the fast-evolving world of mobile technology. Instead, Bailey and her team decided to explore the possibility of going open source.

  • Semi-Open Source

    • Jaspersoft aims its open-source analytics suite at PaaS developers

      Open-source BI (business intelligence) vendor Jaspersoft wants its software to become another arrow in the quiver for developers using commercial PaaS (platform-as-a-service) offerings.

    • At the Intersection of Open Source and Cloud Computing, You’ll Find…Jobs

      As 2012 launches, some good news has rolled in on the employment front, but there are still many people looking for work. As noted in this post, it’s entirely possible to graduate with a technology-related degree but not end up offering in-demand skills to employers. Meanwhile, many tech workers with outdated skills are having to brush up on new skills. For prospective workers looking to differentiate themselves from the pack, new data shows that the intersection of open source and cloud computing can not only lead to a new job, but can lead to a job that will last.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • In Which Eben Moglen Like, Legit Yells at Me for Having Facebook

      Yesterday afternoon, this reporter was scrambling to finish reporting a forward-looking story about how banks are exploring the possibility of using social media data to judge loan and credit applicants. My editor wanted a quote from a privacy advocate, so I immediately thought of Eben “Spying for Free” Moglen, a militant digital privacy advocate, founder of the uber-secure personal server FreedomBox, and the inspiration for the decentralized social network Diaspora. In hindsight, perhaps I should have just called Cory Doctorow.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • ‘Open-source’ robotic surgery platform going to top medical research labs

      SANTA CRUZ, CA–Robotics experts at the University of California, Santa Cruz and the University of Washington (UW) have completed a set of seven advanced robotic surgery systems for use by major medical research laboratories throughout the United States. After a round of final tests, five of the systems will be shipped to medical robotics researchers at Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, University of Nebraska, UC Berkeley, and UCLA, while the other two systems will remain at UC Santa Cruz and UW.

  • Programming

    • IBM updates EGL Web Developer Tools

      IBM has released an updated version of its Enterprise Generation Language (EGL) as part of its updated Eclipse EGL Web Developer Tools 0.7 (EWDT),. The open source EWDT is designed to simplify web application development using a combination of web services and JavaScript (Dojo and others). The development environment is of particular interest to businesses that are looking to migrate classical COBOL/RPG applications to current Java and JavaScript environments using solutions from the open source community.

  • Standards/Consortia/ODF/OOo

    • Open Document V1.2 OASIS Standard published

      The Open Document V1.2 OASIS Standard has now been published.

    • The Community Forum: New Year Status

      After 4 years of existence, the Community Forum has moved on the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) servers at the end of October 2011 (see details). Here are some figures about how we are doing on the English forum. We will try to make this kind of report on a monthly basis in the forum and perhaps quarterly on the blog.

    • Features for GraphicObjects and OLEObjects

      I just wanted to send some notes about added features which are part of AOO3.4 version. This one is actually the result of fixing tasks #118558#, #118485#, #108221# and #67705# which are all about GraphicObjects, OLEObjects (OLE means Object Linking and Embedding) and their geometrical attributes and properties. You may take a look at the tasks if you are interested in details, here I want to describe the benefits.

      GraphicObjects are used when you insert a picture (pixel and vector data) or convert something to it. They already supported the full attribute set, so line style, fill style, text and shadow are possible. Geometrically, they could be transformed widely, but could not be sheared. Because now the content of GraphicObjects is displayed using primitives (and these are fully transformable) it is possible to also use shear and thus now completely support all geometrical transformations used in the office.

Leftovers

  • M$ Shrinks

    The bottom line is that shipments of PCs (notebooks and desktops only) are about flat for 2011/2010, with just 1.6% growth. For Q4 only, there was a decline of 0.17%. Worse, for M$, USA, the most M$-friendly country on Earth, was off 6.7% for the quarter and 4.9% for the year. You know the USA, the country where people want to pay extra for words like “super-dooper” and such,

  • Security

    • Force firms to disclose data breaches, report urges
    • Go Daddy not liable for cybersquatting, US court rules

      Go Daddy was not liable for a form of trademark infringement when a system that the domain name registrar operates was used to redirect visitors from allegedly ‘cybersquatting’ web domain names to a pornographic website, a US court has ruled.

      Petronas, the national oil company of Malaysia, had argued that Go Daddy was in breach of US trademark law because it “used” the two domains to re-route visitors to the allegedly infringing sites to the pornography website through its servers in bad faith with the intent of profiting from its actions.

    • Microsoft kicks off 2012 with seven security bulletins

      The first Patch Tuesday for 2012 brings seven bulletins from Microsoft. One was held over from December, and only one of the seven is regarded as being critical.

  • Censorship

    • EU Commission Paves the Way for Privatized Net Censorship

      In a milestone strategy document on Internet policy, the EU Commission is getting ready to propose new repressive policies. With the upcoming consent vote on the anti-counterfeiting agreement ACTA and the revision of the “Intellectual Property Rights” Directive (IPRED), the controversial censorship schemes currently discussed in the United States will soon arrive in Europe.

    • Bulgarian police raid two filesharing web sites

      TWO BULGARIAN filesharing web sites have been raided by the country’s organised crime unit.

    • Holland moves to block the Pirate Bay

      INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDERS (ISPs) in the Netherlands must block access to the Pirate Bay website within ten days, following a court ruling.

      Dutch anti-piracy outfit BREIN demanded the ban, and the Court of The Hague approved it, so now two ISPs in Holland, Ziggo and XS4ALL have been ordered to block the web site.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Is internet access a human right?

      A recent United Nations Human Rights Council report examined the important question of whether internet access is a human right.

      While the Special Rapporteur’s conclusions are nuanced in respect of blocking sites or providing limited access, he is clear that restricting access completely will always be a breach of article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the right to freedom of expression.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Why The Movie Industry Can’t Innovate and the Result is SOPA

        This year the movie industry made $30 billion (1/3 in the U.S.) from box-office revenue.

        But the total movie industry revenue was $87 billion. Where did the other $57 billion come from?

        From sources that the studios at one time claimed would put them out of business: Pay-per view TV, cable and satellite channels, video rentals, DVD sales, online subscriptions and digital downloads.

      • Music Industry v. Ireland

        The long suffering Irish taxpayer will be delighted to learn that the music industry has joined the queue of those seeking a payout and yesterday issued a plenary summons against the State in the High Court for alleged failure to implement aspects of EU copyright law.

      • Is the Trans Pacific Partnership a re-writing of NAFTA? iPolitics Insight

        When Prime Minister Noda announced that Japan intended to join the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, a grim reality set in. Canada knew it needed to be at the table. This was decided even before President Obama invited Prime Minister Harper to join at the APEC Summit last November.

        Canada cannot allow Japan, its fourth most important merchandise export market, to become another Korea, with the US inside the tent enjoying discriminatory preferences and eroding Canada’s market position.

      • Response to Federal Register notice seeking comments regarding Canada’s interest in TPPA negotiations

        On December 7, 2011, USTR issued Federal Register Notice 76480-76481 requesting comments on “Canada’s Expression of Interest in the Proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement.” USTR issued similar requests for comments regarding Japan’s (Notice 76478-76479) and Mexico’s (Notice 76479-76480) expression of interest in the TPPA.

      • EMI Records launches action against State over anti-piracy order

        THE IRISH arm of multinational music group EMI has launched a High Court action against the State as part of its bid to stop the illegal downloading of music.

        The Government recently pledged to issue an order to allow copyright holders to compel internet service providers (ISPs) to block access to websites that they consider are engaged in piracy.

      • Anonymous will shut down to protest SOPA

        HACKTIVIST GROUP Anonymous will turn off its lights for twelve hours in protest against the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the US.

        The hackers are following Reddit’s lead, and will join a communications blackout on 18 January that will begin at 8am and end at 8pm.

Links 12/1/2012: Linux Mint 12 KDE is Coming, CyanogenMod Reaches 1 Million Milestone

Posted in News Roundup at 12:35 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Review: Saline’s Linux-Based OS For Desktops

    The mission statement of developers for the Linux-based SalineOS for desktops puts it this way:

    “The primary goal of the SalineOS project is to deliver a fast, lightweight, clean, easy to use and well documented operating system based on Debian GNU/Linux.”

    With a wide range and assortment of Linux-based desktop operating systems available for free, developers seeking to attract eyeballs to their software have a particular mission: Standout with something people will need or want real bad.

  • Short Notices: News In Linux Audio

    I hope all my readers enjoyed the best of the holiday season. I’ve been busy with the predictable confusions and minor crises that attend this time of year, but I managed to find time to jot down some recommendations for my readers. Go on, you’ve been good, give yourself a few extra belated gifts and don’t worry if your budget’s busted – it’s all free software, you can’t beat these deals.

  • Desktop

    • A First Look at New Ubuntu Laptops and PCs from CTL

      I had the opportunity yesterday to visit CTL Corp located in Portland, Oregon and sit down with Erik Stromquist, Executive VP and COO and Michael Tupper, Director of Business Development.

    • You made a mistake, your noob!

      Linux will make it big the moment the kernel strings becomes unimportant in the desktop sphere. If you must know it, you will fail. As simple as that. Once the software becomes agnostic to the point that you can use it any way you want, including not looking at little strings or looking as much as you want or need, then we will have passed to the next level in the game. Till then, we will get defeated by tiny mistakes in the major and minor numbers, and woe the fool to cross a number-strict geek.

    • Chinese Lenovo Secures Biggest Deal With India

      Chinese PC maker Lenovo has hit a mega deal with Indian state Tamil Nadu. The state will buy 3 lakh (0.3 million) laptops from the company making it one of the biggest deals for the Chinese maker. The Tamil Nadu government recenly announced the free laptop project for students of state-run colleges and high schools. ELCOT earlier issued a controvercial tender where it removed Linux as the requirement. Muktware broke this story. Within a few weeks ELCOT was forced to change its pro-Microsoft policy and put Linux on these computers.

  • Server

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • The Mystery of KDE Activities

        No feature defines the KDE 4 release series more than Activities. At the same time, no feature is so little understood — Fedora even has a package for removing the desktop toolkit, which provides mouse access to Activities.

        But, when you take the time to learn about Activities, you’ll find them a natural extension of the desktop metaphor that just might help you to work more efficiently.

        Activities are a super-set of Virtual Desktops. They don’t replace Virtual Desktops — in fact, each Activity can have its own set of Virtual Desktops if you choose. Instead, Activities are alternative desktops, each of which can have its own wallpaper, icons, and widgets.

      • When Unity Meets KDE: Video Spotlight

        Today’s video spotlight is a very polished and well-edited one by Youtube user GhindaUcigasa who aims to show us what happens when Ubuntu’s Unity Shell meets KDE. It’s an interesting concept, to be sure.

    • GNOME Desktop

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • January 2012 Issue Of The PCLinuxOS Magazine Released

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

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu TV for human being.
          • Ubuntu User Days — This Weekend!
          • Unity 5.0 Available For Testing In Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin [Video]
          • Browse Ubuntu’s Software Offerings Online On Any Computer [Linux]

            Explore the thousands of programs available by default in Ubuntu, online, regardless of what operating system you’re using at the moment. Whether you’re a would-be Ubuntu user curious about the software options or a current Ubuntu user occasionally stranded in Windows-land, Ubuntu’s clean and simple online catalogue is a great place to explore.

          • Top 10 Ubuntu apps that are worth every penny
          • Flavours and Variants

            • Mint With Cinnamon: A New Sweet Spot for Desktop Linux?

              “I gotta ask….why?” said Slashdot blogger hairyfeet. “I don’t see why, now that mint has grown in popularity, they don’t follow Canonical’s lead and pick their own DE which can be customized to their distro instead of trying to keep some horrible kludge of GNOME 2 and 3 running, which I bet will be a buggy nightmare.”

            • Linux Mint 12 KDE Almost Ready

              Last month Linux Mint 12 was released to quite a buzz. It addressed many of the issues disaffected users experienced with GNOME 3 (and Unity). This was great for GNOME users and Linux Mint in general, but hey, what about us KDE users? Well, the KDE version is nearly ready and users can test a release candidate now.

            • Download Linux Mint 12 KDE Release Candidate

              Clement Lefebvre, father of the Linux Mint project, unleashed a couple of minutes ago, January 11th, the Release Candidate version of the upcoming Linux Mint 12 KDE operating system.

              Linux Mint 12 KDE Release Candidate features updated applications, general improvements and new features, all to make your desktop experience more comfortable.

            • A wild Minty Customer appears!

              First, I must say that all that follows here is my own demented view. But blog thingy already implies that, and about the ‘demented’… well, going against the flow might always be demented, no? Our topic here is Linux Mint. It is very popular right now, but does it really deserve that much popularity?

              I don’t think Linux Mint is really important enough to give that much attention. Most of they have, they have because of Ubuntu. And all they contributed to the FOSS is some shiny panels and menus together with some non-crucial tools for package management, hardly worth mentioning in the greater scheme of the things. Cinnamon is still in the works but more on it later. Ubuntu greatly changed their Debian base and started projects like Upstart (which I am fond of), they made great leaps in desktop hardware recognition and use; Mint made some panels and menus. Comparison here is quite clear that I don’t think my intelligent readers (let me butter you up a bit) might need more clarification.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • US killer spy drone controls switch to Linux

      The control of US military spy drones appears to have shifted from Windows to Linux following an embarrassing malware infection.

      Ground control systems at Creech Air Force Base in Nevada, which commands the killer unmanned aircraft, became infected with a virus last September. In a statement at the time the Air Force dismissed the electronic nasty as a nuisance and said it posed no threat to the operation of Reaper drones, but the intrusion was nonetheless treated seriously.

    • Anyone for Raspberry Pi?

      The Raspberry Pi Foundation is planning on revitalising computing amongst young people by bringing back the good old days of tinkering around with programmable computers.

      Production has begun for the credit card sized PC, which has an ARM GNU/Linux box that can be plugged into a TV and keyboard. Its system on chip is a Broadcom BCM2835.

    • The Raspberry Pi Computer Is Finally Being Manufactured
    • This digital picture frame runs Linux better than you might think

      Ah, the beauty of spreading the guts of some hackable hardware across your workbench. This happens to be the circuit board and LCD screen from a Parrot DF3120 digital picture frame. The device is pretty powerful, considering you can still find them available for around $25. You’ll get a 3.5″ screen, ARM9 processor with 8MB or RAM, Bluetooth, a tilt sensor, and more. It seem that [BusError], [Sprite_tm], [Claude], and few others really went to town and spilled all of the secrets this device has to offer.

    • Open Source PID Controller

      I used a PID (proportional–integral–derivative) controller to regulate the temperature of my espresso maker. I wrote about it in my book, Made by Hand: My Adventures in the World of Do-It-Yourself. (You can read an except from the chapter on Gizmodo.)

    • Phones

      • Tizen Puts Out Some Code, SDK Preview

        The Tizen Linux project, which is backed by Intel, Samsung, and others, have released some initial code and other information in time for CES 2012.

      • Android

        • ‘Medfield’ Atom breaks cover — will be in Lenovo and Motorola phones

          Intel and Motorola announced a multi-year agreement focused on the development of Atom-powered, Android-based phones and tablets. Meanwhile, Intel showed off an smartphone reference platform and a Lenovo K800 handset that both run Android on the “Medfield” processor — now unveiled as the Atom Z2460 — and third-party benchmarks rated the CPU high marks in performance and power consumption.

        • Google’s Schmidt Does the Android Definition Boogie

          Google Chairman Eric Schmidt doesn’t seem to like it when the word “fragmentation” is applied to his company’s Android mobile OS. Android isn’t fragmented, he said during a recent interview — it’s “differentiated.” But to developers and users, the change of wording may not make much difference. “If developers say Android is fragmented, then it is,” said Flurry Analytics CEO Simon Khalaf.

        • Google’s Schmidt: Android’s not fragmented, it’s ‘differentiated’
        • CyanogenMod surpasses 1 million installations

          CyanogenMod development team member Koushik Dutta has announced that the project’s open source modified Android firmware has been installed on more than one million devices around the world. At the time of writing, the CMStats web page currently shows a total of 1,001,177 installs of CyanogenMod across all versions, with 7,895 having been added in the past 24 hours.

        • Android A85 Superfone with Gesture Control

          Micromax and eyeSight partner up to create what seems to be a new type of smartphone. Although, their Android A85 Superfone boasts ordinary specs for today’s standard. This devices offers a 1GHz Dual Core processor, of the Tegra 2 variety, a 3.8” display, and offers Gesture Control.

        • HTC Desire News – Several Desire Models get Unlocked Bootloader
        • Huawei Annoucnes Android 4.0 Powered MediaPad, Along with Line of Color Series

          Huawei is a brand which is rapidly making a highly ranked place in the mobile market. They started from China as a small brand, they are now famous all over the world. Last year in June, they introduced their first ever Honeycomb tablet which was launched as Huawei MediaPad, and it featured Honeycomb and a dual-core processor. Now Huawei is back with the announcement of Huawei MediaPad, which is the world’s first tablet to feature Android 4.0; also the announcement of Huawei MediaPad Color series but this series will be Honeycomb powered, just like the original model.

        • Sony Xperia S coming to Orange UK, Vodafone has no plans to offer it

          Yesterday, O2 and Three UK have confirmed that they would launch the new Sony Xperia S. And today it was Orange’s turn to do the same.

        • Sony Smartwatch accessory launched for Xperia range

          Sony have announced a range of ‘smart’ accessories for their latest Xperia smartphones including this the Sony SmartWatch which connects via Bluetooth

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Intel’s educational PC gets dual cores, 12-hour battery

        Intel announced the fifth generation of its reference platform for education-focused portable PCs. The Classmate now features a dual-core Atom N2600 processor, delivering battery life of up to 12 hours, plus optional capacitive multitouch functionality, according to the company.

      • Android 4.0 tablet sells for $170

        At CES, ViewSonic announced a seven-inch ViewPad E70 tablet that runs Android 4.0 on a 1GHz processor and costs a mere $170. The company also unveiled a 9.7-inch ViewPad 10e tablet for $270, a 10.1-inch, dual-boot Windows/Android model (the $849 ViewPad 10pi), and a 3.5-inch ViewPhone 3 (Latin America-bound with Android 2.3).

      • ZTE shows off a 7 inch, 720p tablet with Tegra 3

        Chinese device maker ZTE has been promising to enter the North American phone and tablet market for a while, but so far hasn’t made much of a splash in the States. So I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for this sleek new 7 inch ZTE tablet to come to the US. But it’d be kind of nice if it did.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Big Switch open-sources Floodlight, an OpenFlow controller

    Big Switch Networks, a startup using the OpenFlow protocol to help companies build software-defined networks, has open-sourced its controller software, dubbed Floodlight. The company, which is one of several startups trying to solve networking issues that arise from virtualization and webscale systems, said on Wednesday that it would release the source code for the controller it developed on its website and will focus on developing an ecosystem of applications around the Floodlight code.

  • A response to a FOSS skeptic

    Don Parris wrote a book a while back called “Penguin in the Pew.” The book is an outstanding guide for nonprofits — aimed at churches, but it can apply to any other nonprofit — in the way to use Free/Open Source Software, which Don like to call “libre,” but you know it’s the same thing.

  • Liferay 6.1 portal software gets new setup wizard

    Liferay logo Liferay has released version 6.1 of the Community Edition of its open source and Java-based enterprise portal software. Designed to power corporate intranets and extranets, it combines a content management system and a web application framework in one platform. The Community Edition of Liferay contains the latest features and enhancements for the platform which will appear in a few months in the Enterprise Edition.

  • Using open source to build the ultimate walled garden

    That’s no slam on OpenStack, mind you: the Rackspace-owned cloud computing project is much-beloved in the open source community for the technology and the Apache license that covers the project. The fact that governance will be shifting from Rackspace proper to a planned OpenStack Foundation definitely helps, too.

  • Google open sources Zygote 3D human body viewer

    Google Body has open sourced the enjoyable to use 3D visualisation of the human body built by Google labs engineers in their “20% time”, the fuzzily-measured time slot employees are allowed to use to work on personally inspired creative projects.

    The open sourcing of this code is a result of the Google Labs division being closed last year. The code now sits with Zygote Media Group, who provided the imagery for Google Body in the first place.

  • Open-Source, Real-Time Bus Tracking Is Coming to All of New York City
  • Second Crack: New Open Source Static Blogging Engine

    Admit it, you’ve got something to say, you’ve got something that the world needs to hear. You’ve got something on your mind that you need to get out, and you want to do it in style. Marco Arment may have exactly what you are looking for. He has released the blogging engine that powers his personal site, Marco.org as open source, available on github under a basic BSD style license. If you do not know who Marco is, you might wonder why this is interesting. Marco’s last side project turned out to be a little thing called Instapaper, and the last web publishing platform he helped build was Tumblr, so his new project is worth taking a look at.

  • Geospatial services with FLOSS: Interview with Oslandia

    In this interview Olivier Courtin and Vincent Picavet, founders of geospatial service provider Oslandia, share with us their business story, some advice and how free and open source geospatial software plays a major role in their company. Enjoy the interview!

  • Rackspace Open Sources Dreadnot for Data Center Software Deployment

    Open Source software is created in a number of different ways, but the most common is simply when a developer has an “itch.” Rackspace’s Cloud Monitoring Team had such an itch when it came to having the right tools for the continuous deployment of software to their data centers and that’s how the new Dreadnot tool was born.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla Plans for Firefox Enterprise – Will it Slow Innovation?

        One of the perceived shortcomings of Mozilla’s rapid release cycle, with new browsers every 6 weeks – is that enterprises couldn’t keep up.

        So now Mozilla has officially embraced a plan for an Enterprise release version of Firefox dubbed Extended Release Support (ESR). Personally, I don’t think it’s a great idea. In fact, I think it could hurt Mozilla’s mission for improving the web for us all.

  • SaaS

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • CMS

    • Big rise in registrations for Drupal Downunder

      There has been nearly a 25 per cent rise in the number of registrations for the Drupal Downunder conference this year as compared to 2011, according to one of the main organisers, Donna Benjamin.

  • Education

    • The UK Bumps Up Its Computer Curriculum, While The US Slides Back

      And there’s no reason that US schools couldn’t do exactly the same.

      I listen to the war stories my kids bring home, from the tiny, reluctant, Medieval amount of computer education they get. Here is what a junior-high-school computer class in Iowa (top education achievement in the country, mind you) is teaching as of last month: “OK, kids, today we’re going to create an account at a web page. Open the broooowser, use the moooouuuse, click on the liiiink… We’re going to open a ‘Hotmail’ email account…”

  • Business

    • Semi-Open Source

      • SMEs Opt for Free and Open Source Software to Cut Costs

        Free and open source software is steadily growing in popularity in Kenya as firms move to cut costs and achieve more customised technology solutions.

        Many companies particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have adopted free and open source software (FOSS) to power their systems in the wake of increasing costs and shrinking IT budgets.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

Leftovers

  • The Legend of Apple and Xerox PARC and the Truth About Innovation

    Every December for the last few years, NY Times OpEd columnist David Brooks picks the best magazine essays of the year. He describes his choices in two of his cols, with links to the essays in their online versiumns, with links to the essays in their online version. I generally really like his selections. One of his choices this year is a New Yorker article by bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell – Creation Myth: Xerox PARC, Apple, and the truth about innovation.

  • Security

    • Scareware – Symantec come under fire. A sign of a struggling marketplace?

      Those who follow my dulcet tones on TechBytes or read my musings on the various social networks I maintain will know that recently (after years of being let down) I changed my ISP. With this change brought the expected, a shiny new router, a nice welcome letter and, shovelled into the box was also a free trial of McAfee Anti virus. Of course there was no way of them knowing that the troubles Windows users may get with malware, virus’s and spyware don’t really have any relevance to a Linux user, but nevertheless their “kind” and “free” trial was put in the same place as probably many a Windows machine when it had been brought to a halt by malicious code and the user (through their own lack of knowledge) merely thought the machine itself was broken.

  • Finance

    • Bureau Recommends: Private Eye alleges second Vodafone tax scheme

      More than a year after first publishing allegations of a multi-billion pound tax avoidance scheme approved by HM Revenue and Customs boss Dave Hartnett, Private Eye has published details of a second tax scheme by Vodafone.

      The Eye alleges that, under the scheme, Vodafone Holdings, a holding company based in the US that owns Vodafone’s 45% stake in Verizon Wireless, borrowed billions of dollars from a second company called Vodafone Luxembourg 5 sarl.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • THE AUTHOR OF SOPA IS A COPYRIGHT VIOLATOR

        US Congressman and poor-toupee-color-chooser Lamar Smith is the guy who authored the Stop Online Piracy Act. SOPA, as I’m sure you know, is the shady bill that will introduce way harsher penalties for companies and individuals caught violating copyright laws online (including making the unauthorized streaming of copyrighted content a crime which you could actually go to jail for). If the bill passes, it will destroy the internet and, ultimately, turn the world into Mad Max (for more info, go here).

      • The Other Side of the Internet

        The internet makes it easy to redistribute unauthorized copies – SOPA is an effort to put an end to that, albeit at the price of getting rid of the internet. But the internet also makes it easy to reach audiences. From the point of view of the big distributors represented by the MPAA and the RIAA it’s all bad. I’m pretty sure buggy-whip makers didn’t much like automobiles either. But what about the artist? Chris Phelan points us to a recent article about Louis C.K. a successful but not superstar comedian. Rather than taking the $200K that the big distributors would have paid him, he put up $170K of his own money to produce the video of his show. Unlike the big distributors who hate their customers as much as their customers hate them – Louis C. K. has a good relationship with his customers. He put the video on-sale for a quarter of the price the big guys would have charged – $5 each copy. He did it without DRM, and simply asked politely that people buy it from him and not redistribute it. He took in $2 million, a net of about $1.8 million.

      • Let us Pray: Yea Verily, Filesharing is a Religion. Official.

        You’ve just got to love those crazy Swedes. Liberal, progressive, cool and politically correct. What’s not to like? They’ve excelled themselves this time though. As dedicated filesharers they applied, and succeeded at the third attempt, to register filesharing as a religion.

      • Bach’s Goldberg Variations commissioned for Public Domain Release

        One of the responses to my earlier post about the MusOpen symphony recording project mentioned a project I had overlooked: the Open Goldberg project has created new public domain scores for the Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” using the MuseScore free software musical notation software and is commissioning a studio recording of piano soloist Kimiko Ishizaka performing the pieces, also for public domain release (with CC0).

        This is another fantastic confluence of free software, free culture, and crowd-funding, as the project raised over $23,000 to fund the commission. According to the projects’ site, the score produced will be peer-reviewed, making them on par with commercially produced scores.

Links 12/1/2012: Debian Reigns Web Servers, Cotton Candy USB Device Introduced

Posted in News Roundup at 5:17 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Automotive Advances–Linux-Based and Solar–at CES 2012
  • What to Expect From Linux This Year

    One of Oracle’s big contributions to the Linux kernel is Btrfs, a filesystem that adds many features that enterprises would like to see in Linux. For example, Btrfs allows for snapshots, a maximum file size in the exabytes, compression, integrated RAID features and many other features you don’t find in Ext.

    However, Btrfs has been missing a few features—most notably a filesystem check (fsck) tool—that you’d want before rolling it out for production use.

  • Server

    • Five questions on Linux and z/VM OS for mainframes

      The evolution of hardware development and operating system support has allowed mainframes to endure in the modern data center. Today, open source operating systems like Linux have found a home on mainframe platforms such as the IBM z114. This has spurred important improvements in both the operating system and the mainframe hardware. In this Q&A, James Vincent, a senior z/VM systems programmer and director of conference operations for SHARE, offers his expert insights on the future of Linux and mainframes.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Kubuntu 11.10 for digital painting

        With the new year, hard to escape to the temptation of upgrading tool and system.
        My last working professional system was done over a Linux Mint 11 installation detailed on this blog so I was first tempted to upgrade with Linux Mint 12, but Gnome 3 provided me bad performances while painting, and the operating system was really missing of simple settings already their in Gnome 2 ( windows colors / thumbnail of my files / panel position / changing ergonomy ). In fact, my Gnome 3 experience was a deception because of that feeling of regression and non flexibility.

        So, I tryed the fork of Gnome 2 : Mate ( also delivered on the Linux Mint 12 DVD ). Mate worked pretty well, but was also a regression compare to the Gnome 2 of Linux Mint 11 because of a lot of things who worked for Gnome 2 to readapt to all the new Mate’s name. Plus this, my home hidden preference folder started to look like this : Mate configuration mixed up with Gnome 2 configuration , mixed up with Gnome 3 configuration. So it started to really look like a big mess. And , I don’t really likes to invest a future into forks ; it’s still good to look ahead.

  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Debian Linux Named Most Popular Distro for Web Servers

        inux may be enjoying great popularity in the mobile arena, thanks to Android–and even on the desktop, to an increasing extent–but there’s no denying its longtime success on servers.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • The Tiny Cotton Candy Computer Runs Android 4.0 ICS, Ubuntu
          • FXI Demos Ubuntu and Android 4.0 on its Cotton Candy USB Device
          • Canonical Maps out Ubuntu Strategy at CES

            The name Ubuntu is closely tied to Linux, but that doesn’t mean Ubuntu is only interested in Linux servers and desktops. This week at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Canonical, the lead commercial sponsor behind Ubuntu, is showing off where it’s headed in the consumer space.

            Canonical is demoing their Ubuntu TV concept, which puts the Linux vendor’s distribution onto TV sets. They’re also showing In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) systems powered by Ubuntu. Helping to connect those items together with desktop users, the company is also stressing the importance of their multi-platform UbuntuOne service. UbuntuOne enables users to share and synchronize content across desktop and mobile devices.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Release candidate available for Linux Mint 12 KDE

              The Linux Mint team has announced the availability of a release candidate for Linux Mint 12 KDE, the version of the Linux Mint distribution with the latest version of KDE, 4.7.4. Like Linux Mint 12, it is based on Ubuntu 11.10. This is the first Linux Mint KDE release which, like other recent Mint releases, has hybrid ISO images; this enables the simple creation of a bootable USB stick, which can behave just like a live CD or DVD, using just the dd command. A tutorial is provided to explain how to install Linux Mint via USB.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Car drivers fuel big demand for in-vehicle web access

      Last year Toyota joined the non-profit Linux Foundation, which is dedicated to accelerating the growth of the open-source operating system. The car maker said it was joining the Linux Foundation as a Gold member to maximise its own investment in Linux “while fostering open innovation throughout the automotive ecosystem”.

    • Raspberry Pi’s $35, 700MHz Linux computer enters manufacturing

      The Raspberry Pi Foundation announced this week that its $35 Linux computer has entered the manufacturing stage. The system, which is an open board with a 700MHz ARM11 CPU and 256MB of RAM, could be available for sale within a matter of weeks.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Are Tablets Expensive Toys? Not This One

        Many children pick up an iPad and figure out how to use it right away — swiping and poking the screen in a way that just seems to come naturally to them. One Laptop Per Child, a nonprofit organization that produces low-cost computers for developing countries, wants to take the tablet experience to poor children as well. It showcased its XO 3.0 tablet at the International Consumer Electronics Show this week.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Oracle in hot water with Java makers

      It wanted to bring in modularisation and licensing plans for Java with version eight under the handle of something called Project Jigsaw. But some of the Java contributors are worried that Project Jigsaw conflicts with the OSGi module system already geared to Java.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Edu-Team 2011 summary

      When I talk to people as a member of FSFE’s education team, there’s always the question what we are actually doing. It is not so easy to come up with something specific. I know we’ve been busy all the time, but ad hoc, it’s difficult for me to name examples, that are worth mentioning. A lot of work that’s being done just doesn’t provide a presentable outcome (more on that below). With this post, I’ll publicly report what we’ve done in 2011 and give a brief overview of what is about to come in 2012.

Leftovers

  • Finance

    • Real Financial Regulators Love Prosecutions of Fraudulent Bank CEOs

      The New York Times published a column by its leading financial experts, Gretchen Morgenson and Louise Story, on November 22, 2011 which contains a spectacular charge against the Obama administration’s financial regulatory leaders. I have waited for the rebuttal, but it is now clear that the administration does not contest the charge.

01.11.12

Links 11/1/2012: US Pressures Spain, SOPA Protests

Posted in News Roundup at 9:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Windows to Mac to Windows to Mac to… Linux? It doesn’t matter.

    I’m just as productive on Linux as I was on OS X, and there’s no reason you couldn’t be too

  • Server

    • AT&T Makes a Big Bet On Linux and Open Source in the Cloud

      While there are a number of open source solutions emerging for cloud computing, OpenStack remains one of the best backed platforms, with vendors ranging from Hewlett-Packard to Dell to Citrix supporting it. OpenStack got its early momentum from Rackspace and NASA, though, and late last year Rackspace announced Rackspace Cloud: Private Edition, which is an OpenStack-powered cloud platform featuring managed services and–most important of all–operational support. Now, AT&T has announced that it is delivering an open source cloud platform based on OpenStack, dubbed AT&T Cloud Architect. It signals a big bet on open source from a major telco.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Linux Desktop new goodies: Razor-Qt and Cinnamon

      While there’s no doubt that the leaders in the Linux desktop contest are GNOME and KDE, that does not mean they are catered for everyone. Different people have different needs and there were and still are voices in the community that criticize some of the choices the designers of the two desktops made. We, as always, prefer not to take sides, but we noticed that, as it often happens in Open Source, alternatives started to appear, addressing the aforementioned issues. Today we’ll talk about two of the alternatives, so you know you always have a choice. So, for GTK and/or Qt fans that know how to install software on their distro of choice, we give you Cinnamon, an alternative to Gnome3, and Razor-Qt, a lightweight alternative to KDE4.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Interview with Brian Alleyne, Sociologist Studying KDE

        A few months ago, the British journal Sociology published an article titled “Challenging Code: A Sociological Reading of the KDE Free Software Project”. Eager to find out what a ‘sociological reading’ of KDE entails, Dot editor Oriol Mirosa rushed to contact the article’s author, sociologist Brian Alleyne, who graciously and patiently agreed to be the subject of an interview. Read on to learn more about Brian, sociology, and the significance of KDE for the social sciences:

      • KDE Plasma Desktop Wallpapers

        KDE offers a very attractive desktop environment that is highly customizable. After installing KDE users will most likely want to configure their desktop wallpaper. With KDE you can easily select a different image to use as the desktop background, or you can use solid colors. Background images and be stretched, tiled, and centered as well for convenience. To access your desktop background settings you can simply right-click on your desktop background, then select the desktop settings option. The KDE Plasma desktop provides a fantastic interface for managing wallpapers, and thousands more are only one click away.

      • The Great Features of KDE Workspaces and Applications – Interlude

        Many of you have been asking for my color theme and my widget style that I’m using in the blogseries, so I finally decided to upload it :)

        The style itself is the nice shiny Oxygen, the default widget style that ships with KDE Workspaces. I just tuned the scrollbars a little and you can do that too – just open System Settings, go to ‘Application Appearance’, select ‘Style’ and right next to the widget style combobox is ‘Configure…’ button. Open that, switch to ‘Scrollbars’ tab and tweak it to your liking. I use 10px width and no top and bottom arrow buttons. All the rest is default.

      • Qt 4 moved to open governance

        Since we released Qt under open governance on qt-project.org, there was always one piece missing. The Qt 4 repository was so far still handled in the old system. This was done as a simple prioritization, to get the parts of Qt that we considered most relevant for the development community out first.

  • Distributions

    • Zorin OS 5.2 Lite released
    • BrowerLinux: A Linux Distro For The Sole Purpose Of Browsing The Web

      Apple has made famous the phrase “There is an app for that“. In the open source Linux world, you can apply the same saying too: “There is an distro for that“. Indeed, for whatever functions you want your OS to perform, there is a distro for that. Need a media center? Mythbuntu. Need a multimedia creation tool? UbuntuStudio. Need a distro for kids? DouDouLinux. Need a lightweight OS that runs in old computer? Lubuntu. Need a super lightweight distro that can fit into your USB drive? DamnSmallLinux. Need a distro for browsing the web? BrowserLinux.

    • New Releases

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • Happy New Mageia Year!

        Welcome back from the holidays! It seems like we’re all refreshed, we all had a great time and we’re all ready to dive into 2012 and make Mageia even better.

      • On disaster reports

        2012 started as a rather interesting year. Perhaps influenced by the so-called “Mayan Doomsday” prophecies, people today reported hearing strange rumbling noises coming from the Earth.

        Interestingly, the Linux world also has its own disaster predictions–you always listen that Linux is finished on the desktop, that the desktop computer itself is finished, and a myriad more.

        One of the predictions that I read is that 2012 will be the definite year of Mandriva’s disappearance. Since Mandriva was the distro that made me migrate to Linux, I must admit that I received the news with a grave heart.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat to Host Virtualization-Focused Virtual Event and Announcement
        on January 18
      • Fedora

        • Fedora 16 Times 3: One Month, Three Versions

          I was walking around Fry’s over the holidays. One of the numerous Linux magazines in the technical publications section had an interview with someone at Canonical, and the title on cover was something like “Unity is a Conversation We Must Win”. There was so much wrong with that sentence I wonder now if it read that Unity was a Conversion that they must win. It does not work for me personally either way.

        • Fedora 17 Has More Features: GIMP 2.8, GCC 4.7, oVirt, Etc

          Fedora 17 (a.k.a. the Beefy Miracle) already has an impressive list of new features coming, but several more features have been added to their planned list.

          The Beefy Miracle already has a beefy list of possible changes like maybe the Btrfs file-system by default, multi-touch advancements, GNOME Shell software rendering, and many other features, but now there’s even more.

    • Debian Family

      • Debian passes CentOS as most popular Linux for web servers

        Last year, Debian GNU/Linux and CentOS were the most popular Linux distributions on web servers. According to recent monthly figures from W3Techs, Debian has recently regained the top spot from CentOS and was running on 29.4 per cent of Linux-based web servers (9.6 per cent of all web sites). CentOS had held the lead by a few per cent during most of the last year; Debian moved ahead by a small margin at the end of the year.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu TV brings Linux to television
          • Ubuntu TV eyes-on
          • Unity-based Ubuntu TV takes on Google TV
          • Canonical CEO: Ubuntu tablet OS will battle Android, iOS

            Jane Silber is on a mission to get the Ubuntu Linux distribution onto mobile devices and TVs, rather than be stuck on desktop PCs. The CEO of Canonical (which makes Ubuntu) took over from the previous CEO, Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth, in March 2010, but has been with the company since shortly after its 2004 founding. Right after New Year’s Day, she paid a visit to InfoWorld offices in San Francisco to talk with InfoWorld Editor at Large Paul Krill about Canonical’s ambitions in the mobile market as well as reflect on Canonical’s successes and what separates it from rivals.

            [ Also on InfoWorld: Canonical has been looking to attract mobile application developers to its platform. | Read InfoWorld's Mobile Edge blog for the latest perspectives on mobile technology. ]

            InfoWorld: What are Canonical’s goals for the client distro, the server distro, the smartphone distro, and tablet distro, and how will you measure success on these fronts?

            Silber: On the client side, it’s about moving from the desktop to other form factors. So tablet, TV, and at some point down in the future probably phone, but that’s a bit off. And success, there is commercial success in terms of device manufacturers wanting to ship Ubuntu and its user base, its user adoption. There is a real demand for an alternative platform. We believe Ubuntu has all the characteristics that are needed to become that platform.

            To continue reading, register here to become an Insider. You’ll get free access to premium content from CIO, Computerworld, CSO, InfoWorld, and Network World. See more Insider content or sign in.

            Jane Silber is on a mission to get the Ubuntu Linux distribution onto mobile devices and TVs, rather than be stuck on desktop PCs. The CEO of Canonical (which makes Ubuntu) took over from the previous CEO, Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth, in March 2010, but has been with the company since shortly after its 2004 founding. Right after New Year’s Day, she paid a visit to InfoWorld offices in San Francisco to talk with InfoWorld Editor at Large Paul Krill about Canonical’s ambitions in the mobile market as well as reflect on Canonical’s successes and what separates it from rivals.

          • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 247
          • Checking Out The Ubuntu TV Prototype

            First of all, after seeing the working Ubuntu TV prototype at Canonical’s CES booth, I was impressed considering that it all came together in just about three months — since the Orlando 12.04 summit where Mark Shuttleworth shared his vision of bringing Ubuntu to TVs and smart-phones. Canonical isn’t ready with any Ubuntu smart-phone yet, which they hope to have ready by Ubuntu 14.04 in two years, but the TV work by them and the community is coming along quickly.

          • Unity 5.0 Arrives In Ubuntu 12.04
          • Flavours and Variants

            • HealthCheck: Linux Mint

              The success of Linux Mint is down to its usability – easy to set up and get running and then use. The latest development is a new user interface, Cinnamon. Richard Hillesley looks at the history of Mint, claimed to be the second most popular Linux distribution after Ubuntu, and considers whether Cinnamon marks a turning point for the distribution.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • British company looks to create cheap, open platforms

      A British community interest company, Rhombus Tech, is part of the way towards developing a micro-computer on a circuit board, much like the Raspberry Pi.

    • Raspberry Pi bids for success with classroom coders

      A test version of the Raspberry Pi computer has attracted bids of more than £3,000 in a fund-raising auction on eBay. With the machine about to start its first major production run, could it be the right tool to revitalise computer science in schools?

    • We’ve started manufacture!
    • The Raspberry Pi is being manufactured
    • Raspbery Pis are in the oven!

      Following the news that the Raspberry Pi foundation was auctioning 10 of the beta model B boards on eBay comes the news a lot of people have been waiting for: they’ve started manufacturing the production models! The Raspberry Pi blog has all the details.

    • Allwinner A10: A GPL-compliant computer for $15

      This is getting seriously ridiculous. Relative to the power and feature sets computers are getting cheaper and cheaper. But they don’t come much cheaper than the Raspberry Pi, a $25 computer designed specifically to encourage children to program. My colleague, Ryan Cartwright wrote about it right here on FSM.

      At $25 it has excited huge interest. But what if I told that it will be bested by an even cheaper computer. Do I hear $20? Do I hear $15? Yes, you heard that right (and it’s being sold in China for $7, for God’s sake). It is planned for educational purposes and as a retail product too. It’s being developed by Rhombus Tech.

    • Phones

      • Tizen Project Releases Preview of OS Source Code

        The Tizen project, which is developing an open-source operating system for devices like smartphones and tablets, is offering a download of the alpha release of the source code of the operating system.

      • Android

        • Polaroid Announces a Smart Camera Powered by Android!
        • Google TV powers Sony, Vizio Blu-ray players, media streamers

          Several companies have announced Blu-ray players and media streaming boxes for Google’s Android-based Google TV TV platform. Sony has its NSZ-GS7 Network Media Player and NSZ-GP9 Blu-ray disc player, Vizio tipped its VBR430 3D Blu-ray player and VAP430 Stream Player — as well as several Google TV-enabled R Series HDTVs — and E Fun will provide its Nextbox set-top.

        • FXI Demonstrated Ubuntu, Android Powered USB PC At CES 2012
        • FXI Technologies’ Cotton Candy: Android 4.0 and Ubuntu on the world’s smallest PC (hands-on)

          FXI Technologies showed off its Cotton Candy PC for us a few months ago, but since then the company has added Android 4.0 and Ubuntu with a Unity UI as supported OSs, along with the original Android 2.3. It still runs on a dual-core Cortex A9 processor and has quad-core Mali 400 graphics that’s purportedly powerful enough to play 3D games. The device itself can be booted via USB or HDMI, effectively turning any television set into a computer. It’s important to note that when using over HDMI, it still requires power over USB.

        • Nuance Announces Dragon Go! For Android, Throws Its Hat In As A Siri Competitor
        • Polaroid develops Android camera combo

          Polaroid clicked into gear at CES this week, launching an Android-powered smart-camera with built-in Wi-Fi capabilities and access to the Android Market.

        • Solar powered Kindle case revealed at CES

          I finally succomed to an ebook reader this Xmas. After having spent years of standing by the traditional “dead tree” format, I made the jump after reading over the shoulder of a fellow passenger on the train recently. I instantly took to e-ink and found its far more comfortable for long drawn out reading sessions than wrestling with a book.

          Despite what I consider as rather high prices for the new ebook titles (when you compare them to the “physical” paperback versions) I still think its a great method of reading and whilst I opted for Amazon’s product, there are a slew of alternatives out there, to which I believe most, if not all are Linux powered.

        • Eric Schmidt: Android Is Differentiated, Not Fragmented

          We’ve spent the better part of yesterday cruising around the Central Hall on a quest to highlight the coolest tech at CES, but Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt was on hand at CNET’s Next Big Thing panel to talk about the future of consumer electronics. While doing so, he (perhaps unsurprisingly) made it clear that he isn’t a fan of the word “fragmentation” when it comes to Google’s Android OS.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Pantech Announces LTE Tablet For AT&T

        Pantech making their second announcement for AT&T today this one is a Tablet. The Tablet will feature a 8 inch screen, and run on the LTE network. The tablet will be $299.99 with a two-year contract, with planned availability on January 22. The tablet runs android 3.2 and will be waterproof as well.

      • OLPC Unveils XO 3.0 Tablet for Kids in Developing Nations

        At the core of the XO3 is Marvell’s 1 GHz, single-core Armada 618 SoC, which we’ve seen in tablets such as Vizio’s $330 8-inch tablet. The SoC supports Wi-Fi 802.11n, Bluetooth 3, 3G cellular networks, USB 2 and HDMI interfaces, as well as a digital camera with up to 16MP resolution. Marvell says the 618 is capable of delivering 1080p video encoding and decoding at 30 fps.

      • Asus spins more Tegra 3 tablets, starting at just $249

        Not content with shipping the world first quad-core Android tablet, Asus is now showing two more Nvidia Tegra 3 models at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES). They’re the seven-inch Eee Pad MeMo ME370T — which will reportedly sell for just $250 — and the Eee Pad Transformer Prime TF700T, with enhanced wireless performance and a 10.1-inch display that packs an impressive 1920 x 1200 pixels.

Free Software/Open Source

  • FOSS and Names

    It started recently when I bumped into this Larry’s post.
    This persuaded me to think (one more time) about names of operating systems and applications in the world of Open Source.
    The post I linked above tells us that names are not always as good as they originally appear. And it gives at least 4 examples where developers needed to think twice before arriving at the current name.

  • Open Source PageMaker Alternative Scribus 1.4.0 Released With 2000 New Features

    After nearly two years since the last stable release and four years since development began, open source desktop publishing software Scribus has released version 1.4.0. Over 2000 new feature requests and bugs have been resolved in this release since the development started, making it the first major release in several years.

  • Google Release Source Code Of Google Body

    Google is one of the strongest proponents of open source. The company has released the source code of Google Body, a project that company retired last year along with many other such projects. The project has already found a ‘suiter’ body.

    Zygote Media Group has created a Zygote Body using this open source code. Zygote Body offers the same navigation, layering, and instant search as Google Body. Like Google Body, Zygote Body can be used in browsers that support WebGL, like Chrome and Firefox, without needing to install additional software.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla Gets Down to Business With Slow-Burn Firefox

        Six months ago, Mozilla’s Asa Dotzler — one of the original members of the team that built the Firefox browser — made it quite clear that the open source outfit wasn’t interested in helping businesses. Their only aim, he said, was serve individual web surfers. “Enterprise has never been (and I’ll argue, shouldn’t be) a focus of ours,” Dotzler said.

      • Delivering a Mozilla Firefox Extended Support Release

        We are pleased to announce that the proposal for an Extended Support Release (ESR) of Firefox is now a plan of action. The ESR version of Firefox is for use by enterprises, public institutions, universities and other organizations that centrally manage their Firefox deployments. Releases of the ESR will occur once a year, providing these organizations with a version of Firefox that receives security updates but does not make changes to the Web or Firefox Add-ons platform. We have worked with many organizations to ensure that the ESR balances their need for the latest security updates with the desire to have a lighter application certification burden.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • LibreOffice Firms Up, Drops Half Its Excess Weight

      “One of the unfortunate things that LibreOffice inherited, as part of the several decades worth of unpaid technical debt, is unused code that has been left lying around indefinitely,” wrote Michael Meeks, a Linux desktop architect at SUSE who coordinates LibreOffice development work, in a blog post on Monday.

    • Oracle releases new Big Data Appliance

      The appliance is an engineered system of hardware and software that incorporates Cloudera’s Distribution including Apache Hadoop with Cloudera Manager, plus an open source distribution of R.

  • CMS

    • Drupal conference keynote to focus on accessibility

      One of the major plus points about free and open source software is that it adheres to widely accepted standards. Rarely does any software of this genre seek to create its own standard in order to do what proprietary systems do – grab marketshare.

  • Education

    • “An Open-Source World”? Where’s The Open Source?

      If we are to believe the early signs, 2012 may well be the year that British schools finally start to address the continuing shame that is ICT teaching. As I and many others have noted, the current approach essentially consists of sitting people in front of Microsoft Word and Excel and making them learn a couple of commands on the menus. It seems that the message has finally got through to the powers-that-be:

      Imagine the dramatic change which could be possible in just a few years, once we remove the roadblock of the existing ICT curriculum. Instead of children bored out of their minds being taught how to use Word and Excel by bored teachers, we could have 11 year-olds able to write simple 2D computer animations using an MIT tool called Scratch. By 16, they could have an understanding of formal logic previously covered only in University courses and be writing their own Apps for smartphones.
      (Or they might just sit down and write a new operating system kernel as someone else did a few years ago.)

      Those words – amazingly – were pronounced earlier today by the UK Education Secretary Michael Gove as part of a long-awaited speech about the future of ICT teaching in the UK.

    • School ICT to be replaced by computer science programme

      The current programme of information and communications technology (ICT) study in England’s schools will be scrapped from September, the education secretary has announced.

      It will be replaced by an “open source” curriculum in computer science and programming designed with the help of universities and industry.

      Michael Gove called the current ICT curriculum “harmful and dull”.

      He will begin a consultation next week on the new computing curriculum.

      He said this would create young people “able to work at the forefront of technological change”.

      Speaking at the BETT show for educational technology in London, Mr Gove announced plans to free up schools to use curricula and teaching resources that properly equip pupils for the 21st Century.

      He said that resources, developed by experts, were already available online to help schools teach computer science and he wants universities and businesses to devise new courses and exams, particularly a new computing GCSE.

  • Public Services/Government

    • Does your local government promote meaningful citizen engagement?

      In a previous post I discussed how Faith Gordon requested the City Council in Lackawanna, NY to make available to the public copies of the entire Council meeting agenda not just a summary. Ms. Gordon requested that the entire City Council meeting agenda including resolutions, memos etc. be put on-line, so that the public can see what the Councilmembers see when voting at a meeting.

      The response Ms. Gordon received from one Councilmember was, “Why do we have to put it on the website? I don’t understand,” said 3rd Ward Councilman Francis J. Kulczyk. “Do we have to do it? Who else does it?”

  • Openness/Sharing

Leftovers

  • Ottawa prepares to launch anti-spam centre
  • Health/Nutrition

    • Rick Santorum Would Be Best President Health Insurers’ Money Could Buy

      I don’t expect that Rick Santorum will be our next president, despite his near-win in Iowa and a decent showing in the New Hampshire primary. I’m pretty certain that when more voters become
      aware of his views and voting record, Santorum will join Michele Bachmann and Tim Pawlenty as former contenders for the GOP nomination.

      But if by some strange turn of events he is sworn in a little over a year from now as our 45th president, no one will be happier than the executives I used to work with in the health insurance industry. Santorum was without a doubt one of the most reliable go-to guys in the Senate when insurers needed a champion for one of their causes. That was certainly true in regard to the industry’s efforts to shift ever-increasing portions of the cost of medical care from them to us.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Spain’s Ley Sinde: New Revelations of U.S. Coercion

      While U.S. officials are scrambling to pass domestic Internet censorship legislation in the name of curbing copyright infringement, they’ve been much more effective in their efforts to export these laws abroad. Previously, we’ve examined US attempts to pressure the prior Spanish presidential administration to enact harsh copyright laws. A new letter reported by the Spanish newspaper, El Pais, reveals that the U.S. government didn’t miss a beat when they renewed their threat to put in place trade penalties toward Spain unless the new government enacted a copyright law in a timely manner. The US was dangerously close to getting their dream legislation in Spain last year, but were disappointed when the Spanish executive office deferred to fully enact the copyright law, Ley Sinde, due to its wide unpopularity. Digital activists and Internet rights lawyers internationally recognized that this Spanish law would overtly skirt due process, violate personal privacy, and limit freedom of expression.

    • US pressured Spain to implement online piracy law, leaked files shows

      The US ambassador in Madrid threatened Spain with “retaliation actions” if the country did not pass tough new internet piracy laws, according to leaked documents.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • ALEC and Westin/Starwood: Who is Your Hotel in Bed With While You’re in Bed at Your Hotel?

      Tucson-based civil rights attorney Stacy Scheff believes that Westin Kierland may have violated federal constitutional law when they threw a journalist (and paid guest) out into the dead of night–due to the simple fact that the journalist evicted had written critically of (and was not liked by) the organization hosting a conference at the hotel. (A new story about these events is available here).

    • Inside ALEC: Naked Contempt for the Press and Public in Scottsdale

      Scottsdale, Arizona–A suburb awash in money and golf courses, set against the backdrop of the jagged mountains surrounding Phoenix.

      I was sitting in a sports bar of the Westin Kierland Resort and Spa, swapping journalism stories with Olivia Ward of the Toronto Star on one of the bar’s overstuffed leather couches. Over the course of an hour, the bar filled with conventioneers from the American Legislative Exchange Council’s 2011 States and Nation Policy Summit (SNPS). (A new story on Westin’s connections to other ALEC corporations is available here.)

  • Censorship

    • Notice & Action: EU Commission Must Put Freedom of Expression First

      Following a consultation held in late 2010, the European Commission just announced an action plan on the role of Internet actors in the policing of online content1. One key issue is that of “notice and takedown” measures, which are today implemented in total opacity at the expense of users’ freedom of communication. As the global war on sharing rages, this announcement underlines the pressing need for citizen involvement in this crucial debate to better protect our freedoms online.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Help Preserve the Canadian Public Domain: Speak Out on the Trans Pacific Partnership Negotiations

        Canada celebrated New Year’s Day this year by welcoming the likes of Ernest Hemingway and Carl Jung into the public domain just as European countries were celebrating the arrival of James Joyce and Virginia Woolf, 20 years after both entered the Canadian public domain. Canada’s term of copyright meets the international standard of life of the author plus 50 years, which has now become a competitive advantage when compared to the United States, Australia, and Europe, which have copyright terms that extend an additional 20 years (without any evidence of additional public benefits).

      • TPP Copyright Extension Would Keep Some of Canada’s Top Authors Out of Public Domain For Decades

        Last week I posted on the government’s consultation on joining the Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations and its potential effect on Canada’s public domain. According to a leaked draft of the proposed intellectual property chapter, the TPP would require countries (such as Canada, New Zealand, and Japan – all current or potential TPP members) that meet the international copyright term standard of life of the author plus 50 years to add an additional 20 years to the term of protection. The extension in the term of copyright would mean no new works would enter the public domain in those countries until at least 2033 (assuming an agreement takes effect in 2013).

      • TPP’s Other Copyright Term Extension: Protection of Sound Recordings Would Nearly Double in Duration

        Europe has been embroiled in a controversy over the copyright term of sound recordings for the past few years. While the law provided protection for a 50 year term, major record labels argued for an extended term to generate more profits from older recordings. Proposals to extend the term in the UK and Europe were widely panned as independent studies found that benefiting a few record labels would come at an enormous public cost (see here or here). For example, the UK Gowers Review of Intellectual Property concluded:

      • Up On My SOPA Box…..

        By now, most people who pay attention to our government and have a pulse, are aware of the Twin Titans of Tech Terror, SOPA and PIPA.

        I am guessing those people comprise about 12 percent of America’s population. The rest are either in tears over Kim Kardashian’s divorce or are ticking off the days until the new season of Dancing with the Stars.

        I’ve often stated that if we were to take measure of the average US citizen’s IQ, based on their television viewing habits, they would place comfortably between a bag of hammers and….uh, Kim Kardashian.

      • Reddit’s anti-SOPA “Nuclear” protest is a good start

        Reddit, the popular link-sharing and social networking site with over 2 billion page-views and 35 million active users a month, is taking the nuclear option in protest about the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT IP draft laws by shutting down on January 18th for 12 hours. During that time, Reddit will suspend its normal operations

        “Instead,” the Reddit administrators state, “of the normal glorious, user-curated chaos of reddit, we will be displaying a simple message about how the PIPA/SOPA legislation would shut down sites like reddit, link to resources to learn more, and suggest ways to take action. We will showcase the live video stream of the House hearing where Internet entrepreneurs and technical experts (including reddit co-founder Alexis ‘kn0thing’ Ohanian) will be testifying. We will also spotlight community initiatives like meet-ups to visit Congressional offices, campaigns to contact companies supporting PIPA/SOPA, and other tactics.”

      • Reddit’s Nuclear Attack On SOPA, The Anti-American Bill

        Reddit, one of the most popular social news site, has decided to go Nuclear to protest the dangerous SOPA, the anti-American bill. The site has threatened to blackout reddit on January 18th from 8am–8pm EST (1300–0100 UTC). Which means there will be no reddit for 12 hours.

        Wikipedia is also planning to block access to Wikipedia in the USA. Many other sites are planning similar protest. It is shameful that the US congress has ignored all the warning by the IT expert and are going ahead to push the bill. These congressmen are not working for the benefit of users or US citizens. They are working for the Hollywood and the corporations who are funding them to pass this bill.

01.10.12

Links 10/1/2012: Linux at the Consumer Electronics Show, Asus Reveals Tablet, Tizen Source Code Release

Posted in News Roundup at 6:33 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Linux Training for Your New Year’s Resolutions

    Immediately on the horizon is our LF331 Developing Linux Device Drivers class on January 16-20, 2012. LF331 introduces programmers to the Linux kernel and the different device drivers used in the Linux kernel space, while hands-on exercises and demos provide the necessary tools to learn how to develop device drivers for Linux. Register by 5pm PT on January 11th and get an early start on the New Year!

  • Linux News From The Consumer Electronics Show 2012

    It’s now CES (Consumer Electronics Show) week in Las Vegas… Phoronix will have you covered on important Linux hardware news.

    The 2012 Consumer Electronics Show doesn’t officially begin until tomorrow, but there’s already some media events, parties, and other meetings taking place.

  • Desktop

    • Happy New Year & Browser and OS stats for 2011

      Operating Systems
      Windows 52.68%
      Linux 38.55%
      Macintosh 6.99%

    • A snapshot of Linux on the desktop

      The Linux desktop landscape is a diverse place. As an open-source operating system, anyone can take the code, make whatever changes they want, and release it as their own custom distribution. A land of diversity, however, also has its pitfalls. Mandriva Linux seems like the most recent candidate to fall, with the company purportedly going under on January 16th if it doesn’t receive an infusion of funds. The funds are being blocked by a shareholder dispute, and it will be a sad story for the once-popular Linux distribution. How many Linux distributions have gone quietly into memory, and which have stayed? What makes Ubuntu so popular? Let’s take a quick look into the the history of Linux on the desktop.

  • Server

    • Server wars: Open-source Java vs Weblogic and WebSphere

      Open source is winning the Java application-server war in the age of the cloud, according to a new survey.

    • AT&T joins ‘Linux for cloud’, boosts HTML5 apps

      Free whitepaper – Unlocking the Enterprise Cloud: How the OpenStack project eliminates Cloud lock-in

      AT&T – one of America’s largest internet, phone and TV service providers – is throwing up an open-source cloud running OpenStack to court application developers.

      The giant has announced AT&T Cloud Architect, a planned service of elastic public, private and bare metal servers wrapped with different storage, network and monitoring options. AT&T Cloud Architect is a developer-centric service due in the “coming weeks”.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Relearning KDE

        KDE SC is great in many, many ways, but I have found that some of those ways are anything but obvious. Nothing specific to KDE, though, as it happens with all kinds of software and devices nowadays. Users want the quick route to do their thing, which most often results in them using a tiny portion of the application or device functionality… After all, who reads a darn manual, right?

  • Distributions

    • Freezy Linux – A Retro Distro

      Some people don’t like the way Ubuntu’s user interface has changed in recent versions, and a person from Rome, known as lucazade in the Ubuntu Forums, has done something about it. The Italian has produced a distro called FreezyLinux. It’s based on Ubuntu 11.10 and Gnome 3.2.

    • KahelOS 111111 review

      KahelOS is a desktop Linux distribution derived from Arch Linux. Unlike Chakra, another Arch Linux-based desktop distribution, which uses the K Desktop Environment, KahelOS uses the GNOME 3 desktop environment. It employs a rolling-release development model, and comes to use by way of the Republic of the Philippines.

    • New Releases

      • ExTiX 9 x64 LiveDVD :: The Ultimate Linux System

        ExTiX 9 x64 is a remaster of Ubuntu 11.10 released on 13 October 2011. The original system includes the Desktop Environment Unity with Gnome 3.2. After removing Unity I have installed Gnome Shell and Razor-qt so that everyone on the spot (during live operation) can compare the different Desktop Environments. I have also replaced the original kernel 3.0.0-14-generic with “my” kernel 3.1.6-extix. Kernel 3.1.6 is the latest available stable kernel, which can be downloaded from kernel.org. The system language is English.

    • Red Hat Family

      • CentOS upgrade from 6.0 to 6.1
      • Hats Off To Red Hat

        Red Hat delivered solid third-quarter revenue, which was up by 23% to $290 million due to robust license renewals. The company also benefited a lot on the operational front, as it saw operating margin expand further to 18.5% for the quarter. The company’s earnings also rose at a better-than-anticipated rate of 47% to $38.2 million as its margins continued to improve.

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Canonical outs Ubuntu TV: Brave or stupid?

            Last week we covered the news that Canonical would announce a new Ubuntu concept device at CES. At the time we believed it would be a smartphone or tablet, possibly made by LG. Everyone in the ET bunker was buzzing with the possibilities of such a device, especially when paired with — perhaps — an Ubuntu-based ultrabook. The smiles that had been pasted on our faces quickly melted away this morning, however, when it emerged that this “top secret” project is actually an Ubuntu TV — an ill-fated attempt to launch Canonical into the realm of commercial consumer electronics, and seemingly the product of delusions of grandeur.

          • Canonical Showcases Ubuntu TV and IVI at CES, Exclusive Images
          • Download the Official Ubuntu TV Wallpaper

            Despite all today’s news about Ubuntu’s latest extension into our lives (Ubuntu TV if you haven’t been paying attention) part of me is still left… wanting more.

          • [Video and Tech Specifications] Ubuntu TV Revealed at CES 2012
          • Linux Kernel 3.2 Officially Lands in Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
          • Canonical’s Ubuntu TV Surfaces at CES 2012
          • Interactive TV News Round-Up (III): Ubuntu TV, ConnecTV, Civolution, Dijit
          • Ubuntu to move to rapid release Firefox for 10.04 and 10.10

            Ubuntu icon The Ubuntu developers have now decided to switch older versions of Ubuntu, specifically the 10.04 LTS and 10.10 releases, to current releases of Firefox. The new policy will come into place on 17 January when users of those two editions will see their Firefox updated to the current version. Canonical’s Micah Gersten, in announcing the change, points out that 10.04 LTS and 10.10 users have been receiving 3.6 point updates but not “benefiting from new features, support for new web technologies, security enhancements, and performance improvements.” Gersten says that they need to move users to the rapid release model “so that they will continue to receive security updates in a timely fashion.”

          • Flavours and Variants

            • DebEX-Mint 12 Special with KDE 4.7.4 and kernel 3.1.6

              DebEX-Mint 12 Special Live DVD is a remaster of Linux Mint 12 – codenamed “Lisa” released on 26 November 2011. The original system includes the Desktop Environments Gnome 3.2, Gnome Classic (Gnome 2.32) and Mate (a fork of the venerable GNOME 2 Desktop Environment). In DebEX-Mint 12 Special Edition, I have installed KDE 4.7.4 (latest stable version), as an alternative, so that everyone on the spot (during live operation) can compare the different Desktop Environments. I have replaced the original kernel 3.0.0-14-generic (the same kernel as in Ubuntu 11.10) with “my” kernel 3.1.6-debex. The system language is English.

            • Revamp Linux 12 Review

              There is a new light on the Ubuntu horizon, Revamp is a newly released distribution that aims to offer extremely rich graphical effects, and everything you would expect from a full featured desktop environment. Though this version of Revamp is still in the experimental stages I was very impressed by the stability, and the effects are mind-blowing. Revamp 12 is based on Ubuntu 11.10 and uses the full power of Compiz along with many plugins to add effects for even the smallest of desktop actions. Revamp is also running on Deuce-Visage or Two Face, which means that you can login to the Revamp-Compiz desktop, or Gnome Shell.

            • Where Will You Hide the Bodhi?

              I had a brief flirtation with Bodhi Linux this past week. I nuked my CrunchBang Linux install to give it a go. It seemed pretty solid, but after spending some quality time with the distro, I found the version of Network Manager loved to randomly disconnect me from wireless networks…as in, right in the middle of me transferring files, streaming music, and doing tha IRC thing. Very irritating.

              I did a full update to the most recent released version (released in the past few weeks) and found e17 randomly crashing which wasn’t the best addition to a randomly disconnecting wireless connection…and I know that crashes aren’t a problem in e17 since the handler can just restart all the modules and BOOM you’re back. Regardless, the Network Manager disconnection problem eventually irritated me enough to jump ship. I attempted connman, exalt, and wicd but I found myself lost. Since I haven’t used those tools before and the docs very scarce for uprooting Network Manager from Bodhi, it was a stopping point. No worries, it’s still a great distribution and e17 is VERY fast and looks very good on this 7 year old laptop. However, CrunchBang called me back.

            • Ubuntu variants to get 12.04 LTS releases

              The Ubuntu Technical Board has approved three separate proposals which will see Long Term Support (LTS) editions of the KDE-based Kubuntu, Xfce-based Xubuntu and education-oriented Edubuntu appear alongside Ubuntu 12.04 LTS when it is released in April.

            • Xubuntu, Kubuntu, and Edubuntu LTS

              I was delighted to read this morning that the Ubuntu Technical Board has approved Xubuntu and Kubuntu to be LTS versions, as well as Edubuntu based on some further discussion. You can read the meeting log here.

            • Linux Mint Touches All Time High On DistroWatch, Will Ubuntu Recover?

              There was some nasty mud-slinging when Linux Mint topped the DistroWatch ratings, beating Ubuntu. Those who understand how DistroWatch ratings work knew that higher rating did not mean more users. Ubuntu by far has much more users than Linux Mint. But the way Ubuntu fans attacked DistroWatch for being ‘useless’ and some Ubuntu developers coming out with suggestions to game DistroWatch and bring some unknown distro on top to show it is flawed was disgusting. If they believed in gaming the system so much, why they did not game the system and bring Ubuntu on top again?

            • Linux Mint Came To Ubuntu’s Rescue With Cinnamon

              Ubuntu was heavily criticized for Unity which took away a lot of functionality. Then came Linux Mint with the much needed customization. The rise of Linux Mint on DistroWatch is an evidence that Unity has become the reason users are looking at the alternatives of the much loved Ubuntu. Yes, one can say those figures doesn’t matter but that would be an ostrich approach where you put your head in the sand and say everything is fine.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Boxee Box screenshot tour

      This Boxee Box Screenshot Tour was created to accompany our detailed review of the D-Link Boxee Box equipped with updated firmware version 1.5. The tour below includes about 180 screenshots showcasing the Boxee Box’s menu system, extensive suite of multimedia apps, movies and shows selection process, Watch Later feature, and more.

    • An updated Boxee Box review

      Powered by Boxee’s popular media streaming software platform, D-Link’s Boxee Box delivers movies, show episodes, and other A/V content in numerous formats from Internet sites, LAN shares, and attached media to TVs and audio systems.

    • Altair unveils Embedded Linux SDK for LTE chipsets
    • Phones

      • Samsung: ‘We’ll nick Nokia’s global mobe crown this year’

        Samsung is feeling confident that it can ship more handsets than Nokia this year, making it pretty much the top mobile phone company in the world.

        The South Korean firm has already surpassed Apple as the world’s biggest smartphone maker, so if it can overtake Nokia in all handsets, it will take the lead in the competitive field.

      • Tizen’s Source Code Released

        The Linux Foundation hosted, Intel and Samsung backed Tizen project has released the source code of first alpha. Tizen was created when Nokia joined hands with Microsoft and started to kill its own open source initiatives, namely MeeGo. Tizen was created to replace MeeGo.

      • Tizen first release goes live

        The first release of the new Tizen device software has been launched by the Tizen Association. First announced in September 2011, the industry group was created by the LiMo Foundation and Linux Foundation. The Tizen Association started operations on 01 January and will work on industry engagement and in-market support for the Tizen software platform.

      • SDK offers early look at Meego successor Tizen

        The Tizen project, which was launched in September by the Linux Foundation, Intel and Samsung, has now announced the opening of source code repositories and the release of an SDK for the Tizen mobile operating system. Both are described as “very early previews” and are aimed at giving developers the opportunity to take a look at and give feedback on the heir to MeeGo and Limo.

      • Android

        • ATandT, Verizon, Sprint unleash 4G LTE Android phones, tablets

          AT&T, Verizon Wireless, and Sprint announced a bevy of Android smartphones — and a few tablets — on the first day of this week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Highlights include the Sony Xperia Ion phone at AT&T, the Motorola Droid 4 and Razr Maxx on Verizon, and Sprint’s first LTE phones: the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and LG Viper.

        • Lenovo Unwraps Android 4.0 ‘Ice Cream Sandwich’ Smart TV

          Lenovo is bringing Ice Cream Sandwich to the big screen with a new take on home entertainment. The company is “allowing consumers to customize their TV experience both with the blending of the Web — but also by heightening that experience with Android applications,” said tech analyst Charles King. “It’s also talking about creating a highly integrated home. … You might call it the home cloud.”

        • Nyxio Smart TV featuring Android at CES2012

          A smart tv is good, but a smart tv with Android could be great. Nyxio Technologies is formally announcing the debut of their latest edition to the 2012 product line, The Nyxio Smart TV with Android OS. Ranging in sizes from 21″ to 65″, the whole line will come with HD/LED technology along with touchscreen capability. Nyxio believes this to be a one-of-a-kind Android product and with full access to the Android Market it sounds very interesting!

        • New Slacker app for Android Tablets comes complete with great new features

          Slacker, one of our favorite Android radio apps, is getting an overhaul today at CES. The new update has been optimized for tablets and features superior graphics and album art that’s been made for a 4G LTE network.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

Free Software/Open Source

  • Winners and Losers in Business Open-Source Software

    We all know that Linux, Apache and Samba are vital for business data center servers, Web servers and file and print servers respectively in businesses both large and small. What you may not know though what’s trending below the top-tier of open-source software. That’s where OpenLogic, an enterprise open-source software provider and consultants comes in. In their recent study 2011 Open Source Adoption Trending Report, OpenLogic looks at the winners and losers in open-source software adoption.

  • Open Source: Not Just for Tech Anymore

    Politics is experiencing a growing presence and impact from open source software and ideas. Many of the central tenets of the Occupy movement parallel open source software, including transparency, openness and collaboration. “Occupy” has been described as a type of “open source brand.”

  • The UK Telegraph Diagnoses America’s Problem

    I’ll keep saying it and saying it… How can we effectively advocate Free and Open Source Software, open technology, and Internet freedom when we’re still dealing with people who think computers are magic, not science? And how can we teach computer science to a population that rejects science… period?

  • Nagios Wins Linux Journal Reader’s Choice Award For Best Monitoring Solution
  • How “Throwing One Away” Makes Open Source Better

    There’s a wonderful line in Fred Brooks’ book “The Mythical Man-Month”, where he says that when writing a program, plan to throw one way – you will anyway. But that’s a bit of a problem for conventional software development, because it’s not clear when the best time is to throw that one away.

    Doing it during development means delaying the public release, and that will cost you market share and possibly the entire market. First-mover advantage means that the really important thing is to get out there with something – however ropey – and hope to patch it up as you go along (think repairing aeroplanes as they fly….)

  • Events

    • Coming to FOSDEM?

      One of the most important events of the year for Europe’s open source software developers is the Free and Open Source Developers’ European Meeting – FOSDEM. It’s held annually at the start of February in Brussels, and this year’s instance is coming soon, on the first weekend in February.

  • W
    eb Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 9 Officially Lands in Ubuntu 11.10

        A few days ago, Canonical uploaded the final bits of the Mozilla Firefox 9.0 web browser on the official software repositories for the Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot) operating system.

  • SaaS

  • Databases

    • Hadoop vs. an RDBMS: How much (less) would you pay?

      Many people associate open source data framework Hadoop with managing truly massive amounts of data. And with good reason: Hadoop storage is used by Facebook and Yahoo, which many people (rightly) associate with massive data. As you learned in Part 1 of this series, Yahoo, an early adopter and contributor to Hadoop, has implemented a 50,000-node Hadoop network; Facebook has a Hadoop system with more than 10,000 nodes in place.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Oracle’s latest Java moves frustrate users and vendors

      Oracle, which officially took on the big job of shepherding Java two years ago this month, is traveling bumpy roads lately, with its modularization and licensing plans for Java raising eyebrows and security concerns coming to the fore as well.

    • Oracle mounts Cloudera’s elephant for big data ride

      When Oracle co-founder and CEO Larry Ellison clambered onto his own Big Data elephant back in October as his company announced the Big Data Appliance, Oracle gave the impression that it would be rolling up its own implementation of the open-source Apache Hadoop data muncher. This turns out to be not true.

  • Business

    • FuseSource Emerges as a Leader in Professional Open Source in its First Year
    • Semi-Open Source

      • Spring Integration 2.1 now available

        Following more than a year of development, SpringSource, the open source Java division of VMWare, has announced the “general availability” of version 2.1.0 of Spring Integration. According to project lead Mark Fisher, the new release includes a number of new features and resolves “hundreds of issues” found in the previous version. Spring Integration is an extension of the Spring framework for building asynchronous, event-driven applications and supporting Enterprise Integration Patterns such as Channels, Adapters, Filters and Translators.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Project Releases

  • Programming

    • Open Source Development Focuses on Quality PHP Game Development Solutions

      With online gaming development solutions comes many custom game solutions perfect for you, at PHP game development Company game programmer possess the skill-set to meet the game development requirements (in developing basic word or arcade games to any other complicated games) on time without any compromise with quality.

    • A Little Bit is A Lot Better

      Buddy Burden explanation of taking over maintenance of CPAN distributions is important. It’s empowering. If you’ve ever thought “I should contribute something to Perl”, start there.

      You can do it.

      Sure, it’s easy for me to say that. I’ve written a few things about Perl a few people have read. I have a few patches in a few projects and a couple of modules on the CPAN myself. (You’re reading this, aren’t you? So I have at least one reader. Thank you for your time!)

    • Good and quick kernel configuration creation

      Using the make target “localmodconfig” saves time and effort when creating a configuration for a custom Linux kernel.

    • Singleton in a header only library
    • Standard JSON API for Java to be developed

      A new Java interface for processing data submitted in JSON format has been approved by the Java Community Process (JCP) as a Java Specification Request (JSR). With 10 yes votes and 6 abstentions, the Executive Committee voted in favour of JSR 353, which is primarily intended as a basis for the standardised development of further JSON APIs and will allow applications to be smaller and more portable by not having to bundle existing JSON libraries.

    • Code for America opens 2013 application period

      Does your city need to solve a big civic problem? Cities across the United States can now submit their Code for America applications for 2013. Boston, Philadelphia, and Seattle have just wrapped up their 2011 projects. We’re eager to see what happens in Austin, Detroit, Chicago, Honolulu, Macon, New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Santa Cruz in 2012. The application process opened on January 9, and applicants have until the end of March to complete their submissions.

Leftovers

  • Margin

    On the other hand, Wintel is trying to sell “ultra”books at close to $1000 and OEMs are thinking they will sell a bunch at a few percent margin with Wintel raking in huge profits. What’s the consumer going to choose, something that can give the whole family and the in-laws a decent computing experience for a similar price or something that works for only one person and sits idling most of the time? Oh yes. There is a market for these low-end gadgets everywhere on the planet. They are not that “low” and end when it comes to performance. They definitely provide acceptable performance for many purposes with all the advantages of portability.

  • Dell Denies Data

    Michael Dell ignores reality when he claims PCs are selling better than tablets all the while tablets are seeing double-digit growth and shipments of Wintel PCs are down or flat depending on where you look. Of course, Dell makes a lot more money selling desktop/notebook PCs than tablets but Dell has missed a lot of revenue as others did better than Dell selling tablets. The key to selling tablets is of course to sell good performance at lower price than the competition. Others are doing that and growing at huge rates.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • The Public’s Last Chance to Comment on Fracking in New York

      The public has until Wednesday to comment on a plan to open up 85 percent of the state of New York to the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing or “fracking.” In 2010, a moratorium on this form of “natural” gas and oil extraction in the state was put in place, but a plan to lift it, advanced by Governor Andrew Cuomo, could change this.

    • For A Million BTU

      The price differential for a million btu is blowing out once again, between Global oil and North American natural gas. The extraordinary discount has persisted for some years. But today, with West Texas Intermediate (WTIC) oil above $100 and Brent oil above $110, the spread has reached new highs. The energy content of natural gas is trading at an 83% discount to WTIC Oil, and at an 85% discount to Brent oil. An economist might be persuaded to say: “That is a gap that must eventually close. Or, at the very least, which gives North American energy markets a huge, competitive advantage to source cheap, domestic btu compared to the rest of the world.” I would not disagree. However, the infrastructure problems associated with energy transition do not make such switching from expensive oil to cheap natural gas an easy, or rapid, endeavor. I address these issues continually, but a post of mine from last year, Vexed By Natural Gas, might be worth a read for those who want to ponder the situation further.

  • Finance

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Lobby firm tries to get ‘wife beater’ nickname for Stella wiped off Wikipedia entry for beer

      For years it used the slogan ‘reassuringly expensive’, a tag-line which reflected its big-budget marketing campaigns.

      But while it aims to entice the upmarket drinker, Stella Artois is still known to the world as ‘wife beater’ because of its high alcohol content and perceived popularity with football hooligans.

    • The Alcohol Industry’s Stealth “Joe Camel” Strategy

      A new study published in the January 2012 issue of the American Journal of Public Health examines the sophisticated PR and marketing strategies that alcoholic beverage companies have used to re-make the image of distilled spirits to appeal to underage drinkers. The article, Joe Camel in a Bottle: Diageo, the Smirnoff Brand, and the Transformation of the Youth Alcohol Market, by James Mosher, utilizes a case study of Diageo’s Smirnoff brand to illustrate the tactics.

  • Copyrights

Links 10/1/2012: Linux 3.3 Plans, More Desktops With GNU/Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 5:53 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Prof: Schools moving to OpenSim should pay for hosting
  • Google’s Open Source Video Player

    Perhaps Google isn’t all bad these days! A new open source HTML5 video player is yours for the download. As well as being a good showcase app it is also practically useful. It is the architectural core of the new 60 Minutes and RedBull.tv apps available in the Chrome Web Store.

  • Google open sources new HTML5 video tool

    Google chose the PR graveyard shift slot of 4:30 USA Pacific time on Friday afternoon last week to put out its latest communiqué to us, the consuming masses.

    The ‘search giant’ has pushed its latest HTML5 video tool to open source.

    The new Video Player Sample is built with open web technology and is designed to allow developers (and other users) to wrap video up in the required code to be able to release it as a web store application.

  • Rackspace open-sources Dreadnot for failure-free software deployment with Node.js
  • IBM Delivers Open Source Version of EGL Tools
  • Consolidation enables open source software strategy
  • AT&T Signs On With OpenStack Open-Source Cloud

    AT&T on Monday officially signed on with the OpenStack cloud, the Rackspace- and NASA-created open-source cloud computing project.

  • An Interactive eGuide: Open Source
  • ChannelEyes Social Media Cloud Built On Open Source
  • OSQA, the open source Q&A system

    OSQA is the free, open source Q&A system you’ve been waiting for. Your OSQA site is more than just an FAQ page, it is a full-featured Q&A community. Users earn points and badges for useful participation, and everyone in the community wins.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • The new MPL

        Last week the Mozilla Foundation released version 2.0 of the Mozilla Public License. Immediately recognized as a free software license by the Free Software Foundation and approved as an Open Source license by the Open Source Initiative, MPL 2.0 is a well-crafted modern license that ought to be considered by any open source project desiring a weak copyleft licensing policy.

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Unused LibreOffice Code Expunged

      The more code an application accumulates, the heavier it gets and the slower it performs usually. It’s just basic physics of programming. Since years of neglect left lots of unused code in LibreOffice, contributors have been busy cleaning it up. The latest scan by Michael Meeks shows the efforts are really paying off.

  • Project Releases

    • LSU Releases First Open Source ParalleX Runtime Software System

      Louisiana State University’s Center for Computation & Technology (CCT) has delivered the first freely available open-source runtime system implementation of the ParalleX execution model. The HPX, or High Performance Parallex, runtime software package is a modular, feature-complete, and performance oriented representation of the ParalleX execution model targeted at conventional parallel computing architectures such as SMP nodes and commodity clusters.

  • Public Services/Government

    • NASA: Prize money a bargain for better software

      In October 2010, NASA and the Harvard Business School launched the NASA Tournament Lab, an online platform for contests between independent programmers who compete to create software and algorithms and solve computational problems.

  • Licensing

    • Mozilla Releases OSI-Approved MPLv2

      Last week saw a quiet landmark in the history of the open source movement with the formal release of version two of the Mozilla Public License (MPLv2) and its approval as an official open source license. While to many it may look like just another legal detail, it is significant both for the way it was conducted and for the intent with which it has been created. This is a license aimed at unity.

    • 2011: Top Ten FOSS Legal Developments

      This year, 2011, was one of the most active years in legal developments in FOSS. This activity reflects the increase in FOSS use: Laura Wurster of Gartner, noted in the Harvard Business Review blog that open source has hit a “strategic tipping point” this year with companies increasingly focused on using “open source” software for competitive rather than cost reasons http://lawandlifesiliconvalley.com/blog/?p=619.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • Zend Updates PHP Server Stack for IBM i

      Zend Technologies has launched a major update to Zend Server for IBM i, its PHP server stack for the IBM i platform. Version 5.6 marks the general availability of the new XML Toolkit, which provides a new way for integrating RPG logic into PHP apps, and a new application deployment mechanism. DBi, the drop-in replacement for MySQL on the platform that was slated for release about this time, is not yet ready.

Leftovers

  • Finance

    • REO To Rental Fed Plan Would Do Little For Housing, Says Goldman Sachs

      The Federal Reserve’s foreclosure rental program would do little to lift the ailing housing market, Goldman Sachs analysts wrote in a research paper released on Friday morning.

      The analysis, written in response to a Federal Reserve paper released earlier this week, calculates the nationwide effects of renting foreclosed properties as “positive but modest,” possibly fostering a 0.5 percent increase in home prices in the first year of program implementation, and a 1 percent increase in the second year. But those are Goldman’s maximum increases, and the researchers are quick to add that the “actual effect would likely be less.”

    • Goldman’s Infamous ‘Sh*tty Deal’ Turns Out Not To Have Been As Sh*tty As Others

      The infamous Abacus transaction that cost Goldman Sachs $550 million might have been designed to fail, but it turns out that it actually performed better than its peers, according to a new study co-authored by BlackRock and Columbia Business School.

      The Abacus CDOs’ performance, “while undoubtedly bad, was actually better than average among all bonds that had been similarly packaged.”

  • Copyrights

    • Copying the copyrighted is okay if it transforms: What’s that?

      Writing in the New York Times, Randy Kennedy reports on a court decision that would make it illegal to use most work of others still under copyright as the basis for new works which “transform” the original link here.

      “The decision, by Judge Deborah A. Batts, set off alarm bells throughout Chelsea and in museums across America that show contemporary art. At the heart of the case, which Mr. Prince is now appealing, is the principle called fair use, a kind of door in the bulwark of copyright protections. It gives artists (or anyone for that matter) the ability to use someone else’s material for certain purposes, especially if the result transforms the thing used or as Judge Pierre N. Leval described it in an influential 1990 law review article, if the new thing “adds value to the original” so that society as a whole is culturally enriched by it. In the most famous test of the principle, the Supreme Court in 1994 found a possibility of fair use by the group 2 Live Crew in its sampling of parts of Roy Orbison’s “Oh Pretty Woman” for the sake of one form of added value, parody.”

01.09.12

Links 9/1/2012: Ubuntu TV Unveiled, Qooq Runs Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 9:38 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 181
  • Download Linux From Your Desktop With Get Linux

    How do I download Linux? That’s a question that I hear fairly often. It usually leads to follow-up questions, like what is a distribution, which distribution should I download or how do I install Linux on my PC.

    While it is possible to download a Linux distribution from a project website or developer homepage right away, it is often more comfortable to download it from the desktop without having to search for the download links and homepage in the first place.

  • Desktop

    • A snapshot of Linux on the desktop

      The Linux desktop landscape is a diverse place. As an open-source operating system, anyone can take the code, make whatever changes they want, and release it as their own custom distribution. A land of diversity, however, also has its pitfalls. Mandriva Linux seems like the most recent candidate to fall, with the company purportedly going under on January 16th if it doesn’t receive an infusion of funds. The funds are being blocked by a shareholder dispute, and it will be a sad story for the once-popular Linux distribution. How many Linux distributions have gone quietly into memory, and which have stayed? What makes Ubuntu so popular? Let’s take a quick look into the the history of Linux on the desktop.

  • Kernel Space

    • FIOPS: A New Linux I/O Scheduler For Flash/SSDs

      Last week a new I/O scheduler was presented for the Linux kernel. This new scheduler, FIOPS, is designed around modern flash-based storage devices like solid-state drives.

      Shaohua Li presented FIOPS, the Fair IOPS scheduler, under an “RFC” state last week on the Linux kernel mailing list.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Boxee Box gets a major facelift plus live TV support

      Boxee Box users who enjoy staying on the bleeding edge of features and functions can now download and install beta v1.5 firmware on their devices, by following a fairly straightforward procedure.

      Version 1.5.0.23422 implements quite a few new features and enhancements to the Boxee Box’s user interface. It also adds support for the soon-to-be-available Boxee Live TV adapter option.

    • Phones

      • Emerging markets push growth in handsets, mobile workers

        Smartphone manufacturers are increasingly focusing their efforts on emerging markets, says ABI Research, which forecasts the mobile handset market in general growing 8 percent in 2012, representing 1.67 million shipments. Meanwhile, IDC projects that by 2015, the world’s mobile worker population will reach 1.3 billion, representing 37.2 percent of the total workforce, with the greatest growth expected in emerging markets.

      • Samsung-backed open-source mobile OS Tizen leaks in new screenshots

        Tizen, a new open-source operating system backed by Intel, Samsung and a number of other smartphone manufacturers, has leaked in a number of new screenshots, providing a first look at the new platform that will power new smartphones, tablets, smart TVs and in-car devices.

      • Android

        • Android Powered 3D Goggles To Be Revealed At CES 2012
        • Android Powered 3D Goggles To Be Revealed At CES 2012
        • Wind River Solution Accelerators for Android Released

          Wind River, the maker of embedded and mobile software, has presented Wind River Solution Accelerators for Android, a series of software modules which the company claims can accelerate Android device development and reduce engineering time and cost to help developers turn around high quality devices faster.

        • From the Las Vegas Strip to your living room: Google TV partners at CES

          Last October, we launched an update to Google TV: a simpler interface, a new way to discover great web and TV content, a more TV-like YouTube experience, and Android Market. Since launching the update, we’ve seen our activation rates more than double. New features and new apps are coming to the living room via Google TV almost every day. We now have more than 150 apps which developers have specifically built for TV with thousands more Android apps from the mobile world available to deepen your living room TV experience. We’ve also been working with our hardware partners to bring new Google TV-powered devices to consumers.

        • Lenovo impresses at CES with Android

          The magic that is CES is starting a bit early, thanks to Lenovo. They’ve unveiled several new Android devices, and each is just as impressive as the next.

        • Lenovo outs Ice Cream Sarnie telly

          Lenovo has announced what it claims is the world’s first TV to sport Google’s latest OS, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. It’s also the first set with a dual-core processor.

          Having already pitched its new ThinkPad laptop range for the Consumer Electronics Show 2012, the company turned attentions to the living room tech-head, introducing a smart TV, the K91.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • OLPC News: The OLPC Tablet at CES?

        It seems that the upcoming OLPC XO 3 Tablet is getting some buzz right before its debut next week at CES. It is said to be an 8″ tablet that may come in a few models. Information about it is currently very sketchy but supposedly some will be revealed next week. I am NOT posting any of the early concept pictures because they are dated and I’m fairly sure the real thing looks quite different… since it is designed to be very rugged for children. Here are some external links to get you in the mood:

      • One Laptop per Child To Unveil XO 3.0 Tablet At CES

        The One Laptop Per Child program’s XO-3 tablet will be revealed next week at CES, according to the project’s founder, Nicholas Negroponte. The XO 3.0 features Marvell’s Armada PXA618 SOC processor and Avastar Wi-Fi SOC, with 512MB of RAM. It can run Android and other Linux operating systems like Fedora. The version that will be shown at the CES will be running Android.

      • Motorola’s Wi-Fi Only Xyboard Tablet Coming Soon!
      • Toshiba launches Excite X10 at CES, redefines the term “sexy tablet”

        Toshiba hasn’t been too involved in the Android tablet world, save for the launch of their Thrive last year. It looks as if they’re aiming to change that in 2012, and they’re starting it off with a bang. Meet the Toshiba Excite X10, the latest in gorgeous Android tablets. Once we get past the brushed aluminum back and incredibly thin (just 7.7mm) profile, the Excite is packing a TI OMAP 4430 dual-core 1.2GHz processor, Ice Cream Sandwich (although it appears to be running stock Honeycomb in the photos), a wide 10.1-inch 1280 x 800 Gorilla Glass display, a 5MP rear camera, 2MP front-facing shooter, stereo speakers, Micro HDMI and Micro SD card ports, and it clocks in at just 1.2 pounds. Impressive enough?

      • Archos G9 101 8GB Android tablet

        Over the years, Archos has pitched much of its kit at the impecunious rather than the technically demanding. However, some of its Android devices like the 43 media player have appealed to both camps. Now it’s trying to repeat the trick with the G9 series of Android 3.2 Honeycomb tablets.

      • Qooq: The French Linux-Based Tablet For Your Kitchen

        The Qooq runs on a 1 GHz Cortex A9 processor, a 10.1-inch display with 1024 x 600 resolution SD card slot, Ethernet port, USB port and a headphone jack under a protective cover. The Linux OS is a specially customised version by Qooq, which it’s it easy to set up and run. Users will be able to access digital cookbooks and other recipe and cooking-related apps and too

      • Qooq: The tomato-proof tablet

        Linux. Designed for the kitchen. The Qooq is one of the weirdest tablet computers we have seen in a while. It’s selling respectably well in France, we are told, and it’s coming to the United States soon.

      • Overcrowded Markets

        Chuckle. The Android/Linux market is only overcrowded to those who are trying to sell that other OS on x86… Newsflash: The world does not owe those who sell that other OS and x86 a living. Free markets work. Manufacturers are making Android/Linux on ARMed tablets and selling them. They make money doing that because there’s no “tax” from M$ and they are not paying twice for the CPU. They will see the same thing on the desktop/notebook markets as well. With a free market, these makers can minimize the cost of manufacture the way sane manufacturers in other industries do.

Free Software/Open Source

  • eyeOS 2.5 Open Source review – how the mighty have fallen

    If you can set up a Linux box with Apache, with a bit of fettling you can use eyeOS to create your own personalised cloud desktop. Michael Reed reviews eyeOS version 2.5…

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • GnuTLS 2.12.16
    • FSFE calls for an amendment of Slovak Copyright Act

      Free Software Foundation Europe calls for an amendment of the Slovak Copyright Act that would eventually enable Free Software and Creative Commons licenses for Slovak citizens. Currently, these licenses are considered to be void due to lack of their written form and problems with formation of the contract. Slovakia is thus one of a few countries where these popular licensing tools still struggle with rigid legislative framework. During the last week, FSFE therefore sent support letters to four members of Slovak Parliament that proposed this highly awaited amendment, but later faced its dismissal due to preliminary elections (See the sample letter below). If you also feel that also other 5 million Europeans should have this option, please support our action and write members of Slovak parliament (regardless of your residence). Explain them what is your experience with Free Software or just reuse our letter. Your support is important!.

  • Project Releases

  • Programming

Leftovers

  • Why The Verge Is Wrong, Acer Did Not Rip Apple’s iCloud

    Apple fans and fan sites keep reminding us they are still trapped in Steve Jobs’ RDF (reality distortion field) that keeps us from seeing the reality and think everyone else is ripping Apple. Paul Miller of The Verge has written an article “Acer’s AcerCloud unveil is a blatant iCloud ripoff”. He goes on to put images of Apple’s iCloud Slides next to AcerCloud slides. (Business Insider also did a similar story without doing any home work.)

  • Security

  • Censorship

    • Hackerspace Global Grid to make an Uncensorable internet in space?

      The wilder shores of the internet are awash with bizarre stories but the one I’m about to relate just has to be one of the most extraordinary things I have ever heard in relation to FOSS. You will have heard about SOPA and the reaction against it in the open source community including petitions, boycotts of GoDaddy etc. Look, that’s small potatoes. What these guys are plannng is out of this world. Literally. Read on.

      Every hacker, geek and commentator has their own solution to circumvent internet censorship but some people’s reaction has been ballistic. In the actual sense of the word. A bunch of open source enthusiasts, hackers and amateur scientists at the Hackerspace Global Grid project have decided that the only way to escape internet censorship is to, well, reach escape velocity and launch communication satellites into orbit. Ambitious is not the word. Better still, the software and the hardware will be free and open. To track and support satellites there will be a distributed network of ground tracking stations using FOSS.

    • 2011: The Coming of Gestalt Politics?

      If there’s anything 2011 will be remembered for, it’s probably going to be the wave of mass protests that reverberated around the world (and is still traveling). I don’t think we’ve seen the end of this. I think this is the leading edge of an on-going pattern that will continue for decades. What’s happened is that a kind of behavior common online has jumped a groove and found a place in the “real world”.

    • Copyrights

      • Creative Commons and FreeSound.org Phase Out Sampling Licenses, Choose More Freedom

        A few years ago, I discovered a site called “FreeSound.org” which sounded quite exciting, but turned out to be rather disappointing because the content was released under the Creative Commons “Sampling+” license, which is not a free license. This made all of the content incompatible with use on free software or free culture projects, and was very frustrating, especially given the name. Last month, though, Creative Commons decided to retire the Sampling+ licenses, and FreeSound.org is rolling out a new site with a license chooser that favors the “CC 0″ public domain declaration and the “CC By” attribution licenses — both compatible with free projects. This will be a big help for free-culture multimedia projects.

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