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Links 28/3/2012: GTK+ 3.4.0, ACTA Spin

Posted in News Roundup at 3:14 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • Skype Open-Source Back In Action, Breaks v5.5

    After a several month hiatus, the individual(s) working to reverse-engineer Skype’s binary client have successfully “deobfuscated” the Skype 5.5 release.

    “We got deobfuscated skype v5.5!!! I can’t belive in this. But its fucking true. Great thanks and congratulations going to Vilko,” begins a new post on the skype-open-source blog.

  • Roll Your Own Wiki With Open Source MoinMoin
  • WalmartLabs is building big data tools — and will then open source them
  • The benefits of open source

    Free and open source software has touched all our lives whether we know it or not. Often misunderstood and treated with suspicion, many businesses take advantage of the benefits of it without acknowledging the community that powers it.

  • Sirius CTO: UK businesses must start tapping SME talent

    The time has come for small and medium businesses to get the recognition they deserve, according to Andrew Savory, newly-appointed Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at open source systems integrator Sirius, with a new generation of smart British technology companies proving that they can deliver services just as well, sometimes cheaper, and sometimes better than their large entrenched counterparts.

    Savory, an active member of The Apache Software Foundation, joins Sirius from the LiMo Foundation, a non-profit technology consortium dedicated to creating the first Linux-based mobile operating system for smartphone devices. Coming from an open source, small business background himself, Savory is excited to see a step-change in the way that SMEs are being viewed, thanks to initiatives like the government’s G-Cloud.

  • The Peek Email Device Goes Open Source

    f at first you don’t succeed, open source the sucker. Peek has released an open source version of their Peek Mobile operating system, allowing hackers to use the all-but-obsolete little email device as a hacker platform. The Linux release is available the PeekLinux wiki and hackers are already adding new apps and functionality to the tiny device.

  • Building a GSM network with open source

    Over the last few years open source technology has enabled mobile phone networks to be set up on a shoestring budget at hacker conferences, on a tiny Pacific island and at a festival in the Nevada desert. Andrew Back takes a look at how this has been made possible and at what’s involved in building a GSM network using OpenBTS and OpenBSC.

  • Events

    • Sydneysider to give keynote at Wikimania

      Gardiner is a long-time member of the Sydney Linux User Group, an office-bearer of Linux Australia, and a regular member of the technical panel that chooses talks for the annual Australian national Linux conference.

      Last year Gardiner, along with Linux kernel developer Valerie Aurora, set up The Ada Initiative, a project to help increase the participation of women in technology. The project was born after several incidents of sexist behaviour towards women at FOSS events.

    • High-tech titans coming to Columbia

      Next week’s Palmetto Open Source Software Conference — or POSSCON — is starting to bring some serious high-tech street cred to Columbia.

      The conference – which grew substantially in each of its past four years — focuses on the communal development of software like Open Office and Firefox that developers share with the world, often for free.

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla at Work on Mobile Do Not Track

        You can opt out of being tracked online by using a Web browser with support for Do Not Track, a privacy feature that lets you tell supporting websites that you don’t want to be tracked by third parties (advertisers, marketing firms, and the like). It’s like putting yourself on an online version of the Do Not Call list.

        Now Mozilla is developing an open-source operating system for smartphones and tablets that supports Do Not Track from the ground up. Code-named Boot to Gecko (B2G), this Linux-based mobile OS is designed to bring the (comparatively) rigorous privacy standards of the World Wide Web to smartphones and tablets.

      • Mozilla launches multiplayer browser adventure to showcase HTML5 gaming

        Mozilla has teamed up with Web design studio Little Workshop to develop a Web-based multiplayer adventure game called BrowserQuest. The game is built with standards-based Web technologies and is designed to be played within a Web browser.

        With the technical capabilities offered by the latest standards, Web developers no longer have to rely on plugins to create interactive multimedia experiences and application-like user interfaces. As we reported earlier this month, modern standards are making the Web an increasingly viable platform for game development.

      • Asa Dotzler Recommends Opera For Firefox 3.6 Users Who Don’t Want To Upgrade

        If you are a Firefox 3.6 user you know by now that support for that branch of the web browser will end on April 24, 2012. As it stands now, Firefox 3.6.28, released on March 14, is likely the last version of Firefox 3.6. Mozilla will not update the version of the browser again unless a major security or stability issue forces them to.

        With Firefox 3.6 out of the picture, Firefox users still using the branch are asked by Mozilla to either update to the current stable version of the browser, which is Firefox 11 at the time of writing, or the Firefox Extended Support Release. The latter has been specifically designed for organizations as a way to lessen the impact of Mozilla’s new rapid release process on the company’s IT department.

      • Firefox 3.6.x approaches end of life
      • Mozilla BrowserQuest The Future of Open Source HTML5 Gaming?
      • Jeff Klein, I hate you ;-)
  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • LibreOffice developers demo collaborative editing prototype

      A group of LibreOffice developers have added experimental collaborative editing capabilities to the open source office suite. The feature allows multiple users to work on the same document simultaneously over the Internet. The collaborative editing functionality was implemented by grafting Telepathy to LibreOffice.

  • CMS

  • Business

  • Funding

    • Kickstarter to fund development of Arduino-based, browser-controlled open source hardware automated gardening dome
    • Google Summer of Code: Contribute to Open Source, Make Money

      If you’re a post-secondary student, 18 years or older, you have a golden opportunity this Summer. Contribute to an open source project that you care about, and get paid to do it. Once again, it’s Google Summer of Code (GSoC) time, and open source organizations are beating the bushes to find the best ideas and applicants.

      The GSoC has been an annual tradition since 2005. Google partners with mentoring organizations and offers students stipends for successful completion of open source projects. Students get a stipend of $5,000 USD and the mentoring organization receives $500. Students get a $500 stipend after coding begins on May 1st, a $2,250 payment after a successful mid-term evaluation, and $2,250 after the final program evaluation. Oh, and don’t forget the t-shirt.


  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

  • Openness/Sharing

    • How open is too open?

      Last month, we posted a survey asking, “If you could open one of the following data sets tomorrow, which one would you open and why?” We got a great response–279 people voted and there were several comments.

  • Programming

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Tizen pops up as HTML5 winner

      No one has seen the Tizen mobile platform in action yet, but whatever browser the in-development platform is using has blown away the competition for HTML5 performance.

      Listed only as “Tizen 1″ on The HTML5 Test (THT) site, the development version of the Tizen browser scored 387 points out of a possible total of 475 points within the mobile phone browser category.

    • 1&1 Internet AG receives German Document Freedom Award

      1&1, GMX and WEB.DE receive the German Document Freedom Award for the use of Open Standards. The prize is awarded by the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) and the Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure e.V. (FFII). 1&1 is awarded for automatically adding XMPP for all customers of their mail services. The Document Freedom Award is awarded annually on the occasion of Document Freedom Day – the international day for Open Standards. Last years winners include tagesschau.de, Deutschland Radio, and the German Foreign Office.


  • Security

  • Finance

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Shocker! FOX asks Tough Questions and Paul Ryan Flubs

      In an uncharacteristic move for a Fox News anchor, Wallace asks some tough questions of the Chair of the House Budget Committee. Since the Ryan plan would lose 10 trillion dollars of revenue over ten years, Wallace asked exactly which tax loopholes would be closed to raise the revenue that would be lost from reducing the tax rate. But Ryan could not name specific loopholes that he would close as part of his plan because “that’s not the job of the budget committee.”

    • The Corporations Bankrolling ALEC, which Has Promoted “Stand Your Ground” as a “Model” Bill

      The gun lobby has come under the spotlight for its role in the so-called “Stand Your Ground” or “Shoot First” law that may protect the man who shot and killed seventeen-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida –- but many other special interests, including household names like Kraft Foods and Wal-Mart, also helped facilitate the spread of these and other laws by funding the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

  • ACTA

    • Spinning ACTA “prolongation” strategies – noise in the cable

      LQDN demonstrates that their voting expectations do not depend upon the ECJ rerferral but their procedural input is quite a bit confusing. I had some strange artefacts in my DSL connection and then found out the ethernet cable between the router and the splitter was broken. You could argue that LQDN add some fog of war and inserted confusion in the process. I just wonder if MEPs would switch to a different cable. If you dismiss the current proposed procedures of the rapporteur David Martin as “delay” tactics what’s the actual alternative for Parliament?

    • EU Parliament Will Vote on ACTA Without Delay!

      The EU Parliament has refused to freeze the ACTA debate, and will not refer the agreement to the EU Court of Justice. In a 21 to 5 vote, the Parliament decided to stick to its calendar and will vote on ACTA in June, as originally planned. The Commission’s technocratic manoeuvres have not stopped the Parliament, and the door remains open to a swift rejection of ACTA.


Links 27/3/2012: Pear Linux Comice OS 4, XBMC 11.0

Posted in News Roundup at 2:01 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source


  • Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols: Does VMware have a real future?

    Though VMware provides its low-end offerings for free, it can’t stay in the game by relying on those alone; it makes its money exclusively from selling high-end virtualization and virtualization management software. Unlike its competitors, VMware doesn’t have much of a revenue stream from operating systems and other products. And when it attempted to overcome that weakness, it was blindsided. More on that in a bit.

  • Dr. Jill Stein: Green Party Candidate for President

    Jill Stein, a doctor and activist from Massachusetts, is running for the Green Party nomination for President of the United States. Stein is the frontrunner for the party’s nomination, running against comedian Roseanne Barr and veteran Green Party activists Kent Mesplay and Harley Mikkelson. Stein’s campaign, headed up by Wisconsin native Ben Manski, is focusing on getting enough delegates in each state to win the party’s nomination at the July 2012 Green Party convention in Baltimore and on securing November ballot lines in all 50 states.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Death by Delay: Obama Team Stalls on Chemical Regulation

      The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has drafted a “chemicals of concern” list to restrict the use of certain chemicals and alert the public to their possible dangers. But the list remains secret and dormant because it’s stuck at the Obama administration’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) for review.

  • DRM

    • Lib-Ray Video Standard: Moving to SDHC Flash Media

      In Spring 2011, I started a project to attempt to create a free-culture compatible / non-DRM alternative to Blu-Ray for high-definition video releases on fixed-media, and after about a year hiatus, I’m getting back to it with some new ideas. The first is that I’ve concluded that optical discs are a bust for this kind of application, and that the time has come to move on to Flash media, specifically SDHC/SDXC as the hardware medium. This is a more expensive choice of medium, and still not perfect, but it has enough advantages to make it a clear choice now.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • ACTA

        • ACTA: The EU Parliament Must Face Its Political Responsibility

          Brussels, March 26th 2012 – Today is the beginning of a decisive week for the future of the ACTA procedure in the EU Parliament. Tomorrow, Members of the EU Parliament (MEPs) may decide whether to vote on ACTA in the next few months as originally planned, or to follow the rapporteur David Martin in buying time and defusing the ongoing debate through technocratic manoeuvres. Citizens must call their MEPs now and urge them to face their political responsibility by rejecting ACTA.


Links 25/3/2012: Bodhi Linux 1.4.0, Many Vivaldi Orders

Posted in News Roundup at 3:41 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • Exploring the Free world of numerical computation tools

    Numerical computation tools that run on GNU/Linux platform such as Ubuntu, Debian or Fedora are a huge blessing for all mathematical computation ‘freaks’, be it students or researchers. The expensive proprietary utility, Matlab, may be a leader in terms of introducing newer applications, but the Free (as in ‘freedom’) Software alternatives available are not lagging in any way.

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

      • Google Chromebook May Get Cheaper, To Run On ARM Chips


        One of the major gripes about Google’s ambitious Chromebooks is its price. It is quite expensive given the limitations it has. If reports are to be believed Chromebook may become extremely cheap.

      • Sony Also Gets On Chromebook Bandwagon, VAIO Chromebook Coming

        One may wonder what future holds for Google’s Gentoo Linux based ChromeOS. The initial sales of Samsung and Acer Chromebook was not impressive. There were many reasons for the slow sales of the Chromebooks, but the future is bright as we move towards cloud-based computing.

        The ChromesOS is gaining popularity among hardware players, after Samsung and Acer now Sony is also joining the elite Chromebook club. Sony has reportedly submitted a filing for its first Chromebook to FCC. FCC E-filing is showing a Sony device which fits the bill of a Chromebook. Any doubt over it being a Chromebook is removed on the ‘manual’ page which specifically points at ChromOS:

      • Chrome OS Makes it Mainstream
      • Sony to launch the first ARM Powered Chromebook?

        According to some FCC leak and rumoring, it looks like Sony is about to release a new Chromebook and the FCC info may point towards it running on an ARM Processor! T25 is the leaked processor info, that sound like the Tegra 250 T25. I think the thinking was T25 is intermediary between T20 and T30, in between Tegra2 and Tegra3. Basically, I think, the hope should be that if it’s a Tegra2, that it has a new faster memory bandwidth and a higher clock speed compared to the “first generation” Tegra2 devices that were released back since the end of 2010!

  • SaaS

    • OpenStack vs. Amazon and Eucalyptus Clouds

      When Amazon and Eucalyptus finally announced plans to partner on cloud computing, the big winners were cloud integrators seeking to move workloads between on-premise IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) and Amazon Web Services. But ultimately, Talkin’ Cloud believes Amazon and Eucalyptus were reacting to OpenStack — which is available as both an on-premise or public cloud platform.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • CMS

  • BSD


  • Project Releases

  • Openness/Sharing


  • Finance

    • The Shadow Bailout: How Big Banks Bilk US Towns and Taxpayers

      The “toxic culture of greed” on Wall Street was highlighted again last week, when Greg Smith went public with his resignation from Goldman Sachs in a scathing oped published in the New York Times. In other recent eyebrow-raisers, LIBOR rates—the benchmark interest rates involved in interest rate swaps—were shown to be manipulated by the banks that would have to pay up; and the objectivity of the ISDA (International Swaps and Derivatives Association) was called into question, when a 50% haircut for creditors was not declared a “default” requiring counterparties to pay on credit default swaps on Greek sovereign debt.

    • TBTF Sheriff Bill Black on MF Global cover-up
    • Food Stamp Use in L.A. Pauses At the Million Mark, Awaiting Oil’s Next Move

      For the first time in several years, the rate of growth in Los Angeles County food stamp use has slowed. That’s little consolation however given that total participation zoomed from just above 600,000 to over 1,000,000 people since the onset of the financial crisis. As longtime readers know, I’ve tracked the series as a backdoor view on rising energy costs–and in the case of LA County–gasoline costs in particular. | see: Los Angeles County SNAP Users vs. Price of Oil 2007-2012.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • CMD Asks Wisconsin Ethics Board to Examine Corporate-Funded Gifts to ALEC Legislators

      The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) filed a complaint today with the Government Accountability Board (GAB) based on newly discovered documents revealing that numerous Wisconsin legislators have received corporate-funded gifts through their connections to the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Although ALEC describes itself as the largest membership group for legislators, over 98% of its $7 million budget is from corporations and sources other than legislative dues. Documents obtained via Wisconsin open records law and other sources show that ALEC corporations are funding lawmakers’ out-of-state travel expenses to posh resorts for ALEC meetings with corporate lobbyists, in addition to gifts of entertainment and exclusive parties.


Links 23/3/2012: Linux 3.4 Debates, Iceland’s Free Software Ambitions

Posted in News Roundup at 5:18 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source


  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Cantor Quietly Acknowledges Failing to Report ALEC Gift

      In February, Common Cause wrote to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, asking for an explanation about an apparently unreported $1,350 gift from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) in 2009. Cantor’s office immediately responded, claiming our inquiry was without foundation, but last week his office quietly amended his financial disclosures to include the gift from ALEC.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trademarks

    • Copyrights

      • Copyright isn’t dead just because we’re not willing to let it regulate us

        The first time I ever heard someone declare the death of copyright, it wasn’t a dreadlocked GNU/Linux hacker or a cyberpunk in mirror shades: it was a music executive, circa 1999, responding to the launch of Napster.

        I thought he was wrong then and I think he’s wrong now — as is everyone else who’s declared copyright to be dead.

        The problem is in the name: copyright. The Statute of Anne and other early copyright rules concerned themselves with verbatim copying because copying was the only industrial activity associated with creative expression at the time. There were lots of crafts associated with culture, of course, – performing music, plays and dance, painting pictures, and so on – but these weren’t industrial activities.

Links 23/3/2012: Commodore Linux, Iceland Moves to Free Software

Posted in News Roundup at 4:21 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source


  • Security

    • The big leak: Microsoft’s epic security fail

      Some words just seem to go together: “bread” and “butter”; “trial” and “error”; “Microsoft” and “security breach.” The MS12-020 Remote Desktop Protocol vulnerability revealed last week shows once again that when it comes to data security, Microsoft is its own worst enemy and any “secure” system can be compromised.


Links 22/3/2012: KDevelop 4.3, Gentoo in Space

Posted in News Roundup at 4:00 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Universal USB Installer supports four more Linux distros

    The busy folks at Pen Drive Linux have updated their handy Universal USB Installer tool to support four more distros. Which means it can now convert live CDs of Deepin Linux, LinHES Linux, Trisquel Linux and Satux Linux to run on USB keys.

  • Dell Surveys Customers on GNU/Linux
  • Carla Schroder: Whoever controls technology controls society

    CS: My first PC was an Apple LC II back around 1993. Then I got hold of a Windows 3.1/ DOS 5 PC. I spent most of my time in DOS because Windows was barely functional. I learned about Linux from a local computer magazine, Computerbits, and installed my first Red Hat around 1995. From 3.5” diskettes!

    Apple was very different then, they actually encouraged users to get under the hood and learn about the system, and you could get detailed manuals. They didn’t evolve into shiny, unfriendly closed boxes until later.

  • Desktop

    • 2012 Will be The Year of The GNU/Linux Desktop

      The GNU/Linux desktop has been around and growing for a while now but 2012 will be special:

      * Android/Linux and GNU/Linux are getting together on ARM,
      * Many OEMs are now producing desktop/notebook machines with GNU/Linux, including some old and new styles,
      * thin clients, which love GNU/Linux, are now respectable (growth 20% p.a.)…, and
      * Android/Linux is invading the desktop space on ARM and x86.

    • How Linux Can Bring Life To Your Old PC
  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • What’s New in Linux 3.3?
    • Greg KH Readies for Collaboration Summit, Talks Raspberry Pi

      Linux kernel maintainer and Linux Foundation Fellow Greg Kroah-Hartman will be moderating the highly-anticipated Linux kernel panel at the Collaboration Summit in a couple short weeks. He was generous enough to take a few moments recently to answer some questions about what we might hear from the Linux kernel panel, as well as some details on his recent work and projects. Oh, and we couldn’t resist asking him about the new Raspberry Pi.

    • Linux Kernel May Gain VMUFAT File-System Support
    • Graphics Stack

      • AMD Publishes Open-Source HD 7000, Trinity Code
      • An Updated Look At Radeon Gallium3D 2D Color Tiling
      • Intel Publishes More Haswell Graphics Driver Code
      • An Extremely Large Patch Hits The X.Org Server
      • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 “Kepler” On Linux?

        NVIDIA has finally introduced their first Kepler-based graphics card: the GeForce GTX 680. The new Kepler graphics architecture is an exciting successor to Fermi, but how well does this new graphics processor work under Linux? Here’s a glimpse in what to expect for the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 600 series on Linux.

        First of all, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 is designed to compete with AMD’s Radeon HD 7970 Southern Islands graphics card. The GTX 680 has a 28nm GK104 Kepler GPU with 1536 CUDA cores, 128 texture units, 1006MHz core clock, PCI Express 3.0 support and initially there’s just 2GB of GDDR5 video memory on a 256-bit bus. The GeForce GTX 680 has a 195 Watt TDP and carries a $500 USD price-tag.

      • Nouveau Project Has Huge Surprises Today

        This morning I wrote about the launch of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 as the first-to-ship NVIDIA GPU based upon their brand new Kepler architecture. At the start of the morning it looked to be the usual NVIDIA launch: binary driver support should be in place with an official driver update due out at any time and it would mark the start of the usual Nouveau driver game of reverse-engineering the support in the coming months. With Fermi and past NVIDIA generations there’s never been same-day open-source Nouveau support in any form, but it’s generally taken months to get the display to light-up with KMS.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KDevelop 4.3 Brings Support for Basic C++11

        After nine long months of hard work, the KDevelop team proudly announced last evening, March 20th, the immediate availability for download of the KDevelop 4.3 software, which comes with improved performance, lots of new features and assorted bug fixes.

      • KDevelop 4.3 arrives with KDE Projects integration
      • KDE vs Unity: Is KDE Better Than Unity?

        I have been using KDE under openSUSE for a while now, and for the first time in my life started to love KDE. Last night I went on a test driver and installed couple of KDE centric distributions including Mageia and Mandriva just for the sake of comparison.

        These two distributions showed what wonders can be done with KDE, if integrated well. The moment I booted into Kubuntu, I realised why Kubuntu is so low in Distrowatch (at 27). This is ironic because the 26 spots are dominated by KDE centric distros such as Mageia, PCLinuxOS, Chakra, Mandriva, etc.

    • GNOME Desktop

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Year 2012 Will See More Android 4.0 Phones

          The plight of developers will soon come to an end as the industry will see more Android 4.0 phones launched in 2012.

          According to Digitimes, “The supply of smartphones running on Android 4.0 will increase substantially starting the second quarter of 2012, with mid-range to high-end models coming from brand vendors including HTC, Samsung Electronics, and Sony Mobile Communications, while China-based handset makers may launch models based on Qualcomm’s 7227a solution and MediaTek’s MT6565 platform for the entry-level segment, according to industry sources.”

        • Sony Releases Source Code Of Xperia S

          Sony has released the source code for the Sony Xperia S phones. This is Sony’s flagship device (no more Erricson) which runs on 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Dual Core processor. This is the first time the company has released source code for a product built on the Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 platform. The code is targeted at inividual enthusiasts and projects like CyanogenMod to be able to take full advantage of the hardware by creating custom ROMs.

        • Sony Starts Shipping Xperia S, Globally

          Sony has announced that they have started shipping their flagship Android phone Xperia S. The phone will be available globally. The phone is powered by a 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Dual Core processor and runs Android 2.3.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

Free Software/Open Source

  • Direct from the Source: Some Good Interviews with FOSS Leaders

    It’s always good to hear from the movers and shakers in the open source community, and in addition to a number of recent interviews on timely open source topics here on OStatic, a number of compelling interviews with FOSS leaders have appeared on other sites. If you’re looking for some great input from the bleeding edge, check out this collection of interviews worth reading.

  • Announcing the Sixth Annual Future of Open Source Survey

    Black Duck Software and North Bridge Venture Partners, in partnership with 451 Research, yesterday announced a collaboration to conduct the sixth annual Future of Open Source Survey.

    The survey, an annual bellwether of the state of the open source industry, is supported by more than 20 open source software (OSS) industry leaders and is open to participation from the entire open source community.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

      • Chrome: The people’s Web browser choice

        Yes. It’s true. For one day, March 18th, 2012, Chrome, and not Internet Explorer (IE), was the most popular Web browser in the world. It won’t be the last day. While the start of the work week put IE comfortably back on top. When users aren’t chained to their desks, they’re choosing to use Google’s speedy Chrome.

        StatCounter, the Web-site analytics company research arm StatCounter Global Stats found that Chrome was the number one browser in the world that day. StatCounter data comes fron over 15 billion page views per month (4 billion from the US) to the StatCounter network of more than three million websites

    • Mozilla

      • For a Speedy Boot, Try Firefox-Based xPUD Linux

        Enter Linux in general–which is typically much faster, particularly on older hardware–and xPUD in particular, an Ubuntu-based distro built around Firefox that’s lightweight and made for speed.

      • Thunderbird 11 Officially Lands in Ubuntu 11.10

        One week after Firefox 11 officially landed in Ubuntu 11.10 last week, a few hours ago (March 21st) Canonical announced that the Mozilla Thunderbird 11.0 email client is now available on the official software repositories of the Oneiric Ocelot operating system.

  • SaaS

    • VMware Worried About Rackspace, OpenStack Cloud Gains?

      VMware vs. OpenStack: Plenty of pundits are debating the merits of each platform for cloud computing. Now for a twist: Within the cloud storage market, the recent hot rumor involves VMware (VMW) potentially buying Rackspace (RAX) in order to disrupt potential competition from OpenStack, the open source cloud platform. Here’s a reality check from The VAR Guy.

    • Dell teams up with Canonical to put OpenStack in the cloud

      OpenStack-Powered Cloud Solutions with Ubuntu are to be offered by Dell to UK, German, and Chinese companies

    • Dell delivers one-stop cloud computing service based on OpenStack
    • Dell gets more open saucy
    • Eucalyptus Doubles Down on its Amazon Bet

      Born as a research project in the computer science department at UCSB, Eucalyptus the company was founded in January of 2009. Originally intended to replicate a subset of the Amazon cloud’s featureset in software that could be run locally, one of the project’s primary differentiators was its compatibility with the Amazon API. Importantly, however, this support was unofficial: Amazon neither supported nor legally blessed this feature. Which meant that its appeal was throttled by the uncertainty of Eucalyptus’ legal footing. More than one large vendor has privately characterized the Amazon API as a “non-starter” because their legal departments could not be assured of Amazon’s intent with respect to the intellectual property issues involved.

  • CMS

    • Drupal Usability Test Conclusions: A Missing Conceptual Foundation

      Earlier this year we announced that we would be conducting a Drupal usability study that we would live stream so viewers could watch as participants worked with Drupal 7. Becky Gessler and I are excited to announce our analysis of the results that we will also present at DrupalCon Denver to the Drupal community in a “core conversation” session with Jen Lampton called “User eXperience for Open Source: How to Galvanize a Community.”

    • Drupal’s Plan for Open Source CMS Success

    • GNU Hurd/ news/ 2011-q4

      This quarter, Ludovic Courtès contributed a continuously-built Nix-based QEMU image, raising the count of GNU/Hurd distributions to three: Debian GNU/Hurd, Arch Hurd, and now Nix. His build is still pretty basic, but a step into the right direction: continuous integration is a great facility for automated testing.

    • GNU Hurd/ news/ 2012-03-21

      The Google Summer of Code 2012 is on! If you’re a student, consider applying for a GNU Hurd project — details to be found on our GSoC page.

    • The GNU C library 2.15 release!
    • GCC 4.7.0 released to mark the 25 years of GNU Compiler Collection

      The GCC development team is celebrating the 25th year of the GNU Compiler Collection, a collection initiated by the first public release of GCC (GNU C Compiler) in 1987 by Richard Stallman. Over the years the GNU Compiler Collection, renamed as other languages joined the toolchain, shaped how developers acquired the tools of their trade and provided a platform for new compiler developments. As part of the celebration, the developers have released GCC 4.7.0, a major release of the compiler collection that brings with it new functionality.

    • Happy Birthday GCC!
    • GCC Turns 25 Years Old, GCC 4.7 Released
  • Licensing

    • Enforcing the GPL with Judo moves

      “In judo, the goal is to use the momentum of the person attacking you to defend yourself, and that is exactly what copyleft does”

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Open APIs: The Fifth Pillar of Modern IT Openness

      Last year, I wrote about the key pillars of openness in today’s enterprise IT industry, highlighting open source software, real open standards, open clouds, and open data as the ‘Four Pillars of Modern IT Openness.’

      More recently, I wrote about what I now consider to be the fifth pillar, which is open application programming interfaces (APIs). Of course, when we talk about ‘open’ anything — open source, open standards, open clouds, open APIs — there tends to be debate about what is really open, how we should define open and who should or should not be able to carry the phrase. My focus on open APIs and on APIs in general generated some good discussion, as well as some pushback (Jim comment on LI, regarding the value of APIs compared to open source software, which APIs are open, and how open is open enough?


  • Finance

    • Goldman loses bid to end lawsuit over risky CDO

      Goldman Sachs Group Inc lost its bid to dismiss a lawsuit accusing it of defrauding investors by selling risky debt linked to subprime mortgages that it planned to bet against.

      The decision by U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero in New York keeps alive a hedge fund’s claims over a $2 billion offering of collateralized debt obligations, amid intense scrutiny over Goldman’s activities before and after the 2008 financial crisis.

  • ACTA


Links 21/3/2012: Torvalds Secrets, Radeon HD 7000 Driver Now Free/Libre

Posted in News Roundup at 7:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • A Peek Behind the Curtain at Puppet Labs

    In this interview, Luke Kanies, CEO and founder of Puppet Labs, explains why the Puppet configuration management tool is a huge hit with sys admins, and tells us what to expect next from the popular open source project.

  • Open source moving in mobile

    We got another reminder of how disruptive open source software is to mobile computing this week, when Linux and Android merged back together. This appears to be good news for a number of parties, but Android and Linux developers and users seem particularly likely to benefit. The inclusion of Android code in the Linux kernel and the ability for Linux developers to more easily work on the Android environment and applications also ties into some of the key topics we’ll be covering in a Webcast March 21 titled ‘Open Source, A Tale of Two Cities in the Mobile Enterprise,’ presented by 451 Research and Black Duck Software.

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

      • Chromium OS Desktop Shell Eschews Google’s Cloud-Only Mantra

        Ever since Google started working on its Chrome OS operating system, it has had a pronounced focus on allowing users to only work with cloud-based data and applications. This has drawn criticism from many users, and some from us here at OStatic, as seen in this post. With Chrome OS, Google placed a heavy bet on the idea that consumers and business users would have no problem storing data and using applications in the cloud, without working on the locally stored data/applications model that they’re used to.

  • CMS

  • Licensing

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming


  • Finance

  • Censorship

    • America: Iran Can’t Control The Internet, Only We Can

      The Obama administration has condemned Iran for trying to take control of the Internet. In addition, The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control issued guidance and licensing information to further support the free flow of information to citizens of Iran – a freedom the Iranian regime has consistently denied to its people.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • ACTA

        • De Gucht goes rogue again

          Concerned of the ACTA dossier many citizens contacted the press staffers of his colleague Commissioner Neelie Kroes. Commissioner Michel Barnier is right when he emphasized the need for better communications. Karel De Gucht had the opportunity to embrace the public attention to ACTA, and strengthen the institutional cohesion with the European public, help the transformation of the EU towards an “Europe of the citizens”. He didn’t exercise this opportunity, and it appears to me the reason is a fundamental disrespect to democratic principles, he doesn’t take the public seriously.

Links 21/3/2012: Fedora 18 Talked About, Many New Android/Linux Devices

Posted in News Roundup at 3:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Exploring DIY Linux Router Distros

    Router lockups have been a problem for me ever since I got my first 802.11G Router in 2004. Since then, we’ve seen companies roll out supposed “power user” routers or routers meant for “gamers,” but for some reason not a single one has alleviated the problem of having to reset the router after running for a few days. After my new “gaming” router locked up while refreshing a server list for a multiplayer game, it was the last straw and I began searching for something a little more robust.

  • New Universal USB Installer for Linux

    The Universal USB Installer converts live CDs of various Linux distributions to run on USB keys.

  • Desktop

    • Past Year of GNU/Linux in Germany

      According to Statcounter, it’s more like 40%, but still quite good. Perhaps more of those units are going into homes rather than businesses. Doubling time at 40% per annum is about two years.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linus Torvalds: The King of Geeks (And Dad of 3)

      The license plate on Linus Torvalds’ Mercedes SLK convertible says it all. The frame running around the outside of the plate reads “Mr. Linux. King of Geeks.” But the plate itself says “Dad of 3.”

      If you meet Linus Torvalds, he comes off as a mild-mannered, down-to-earth Finnish-American. He lives with his wife Tove, three kids, a cat, a dog, a snake, a goldfish, a bunny and a pet rat in a comfortable 6,000 square foot home just north of Portland’s tony Lake Oswego neighborhood. The house is yellow — his favorite color — and so’s the Mercedes.

    • Linux guru: re-merging of Android into kernel eases sysdev a bit

      Linux kernel maintainer and Linux Foundation Fellow Greg Kroah-Hartman said the reintroduction of 7,000 lines of Android code into the Linux 3.3 kernel will make it somewhat easier for OEMs creating Android systems. App developers? Not so much

    • Graphics Stack

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Direct Rendering For Qt Compositor & More
      • Kdenlive: Superior Video Editor … not just for pros

        Video editing has evolved from a niche market in the computer world to something that computers are simply expected to do. It’s a tall order to be everything to everyone. But if any video editing software comes close to that mark, it’s Kdenlive—a KDE Applications star. With a strong commitment and a plan for making major improvements, the Kdenlive team is raising money. Please help out if you can.

      • KDevelop 4.3 released with basic C++11

        After about nine months of extensive development, the KDevelop team is happy to announce the immediate availability of KDevelop 4.3. As usual, this feature release comes packed with new features, bug fixes and improved performance.

  • Distributions

    • Linpus Lite Desktop 1.7 review
    • JoldzicOS 3.31 Screenshots
    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • Naming Fedora 18, The Beefy Miracle Successor

          There’s two months until Fedora 17, which is codenamed the Beefy Miracle, is officially released. However, already getting underway is the codename proposal period for Fedora 18. What will succeed the Beefy Miracle?

        • Fedora 18 Picks Up New Features, Rejects Systemd-Journal

          There’s still two months prior to the official Fedora 17 release — Fedora 17 Beta isn’t even out yet — but besides coming up with a new codename, we have our first technical glimpse at new features to Fedora 18, which will be released by Red Hat and the community in Q4’2012.

          At yesterday’s Fedora Engineering & Steering Committee (FESCo), they approved the first batch of Fedora 18 features now that Fedora 17 is well into its feature freeze. The items approved for the yet-to-be-codenamed Fedora 18 include:

    • Debian Family

      • Debian Project News – March 19th, 2012
      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Zorin OS 6 Lite Is Based on Lubuntu 11.10

              The Zorin OS development team proudly announced yesterday, March 19th, the immediate availability for download of the Zorin OS 6 Lite and Zorin OS 6 Educational Lite operating systems.

              This major release of the Zorin OS 6 Lite series is now based on the Lubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot) operating sytem and takes advantage of the lightweight LXDE desktop environment, in order to provide an extremely fast and feature-packed desktop experience, especially for low-end machines.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Google is the least open part of Android

          I have been an Android user since the release of the G1. I was a Linux server admin at the time, and the idea of an open source environment on my phone was something I had been thinking about for awhile. Before the release of the G1, I was even considering diving into the OpenMOKO project, which nobody remembers (as a result of the G1 launch). For me, open source meant that, like my computer, I could adjust things at will that I wasn’t happy with. I followed the Android Open Source Project with eager anticipation, and watched as this community of developers modify and build and bolt on features to the Android that we know today.

        • ZTE N910 clears the FCC with LTE support for AWS and PCS bands
        • Sony Xperia Neo L MT25i announced as the company’s first Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich phone

          Sony has officially unveiled its first smartphone to come with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich from day one: the Xperia Neo L MT25i, announced earlier today in China.

          As its name suggests, the Xperia Neo L is the successor to the Neo and Neo V (which were introduced last year running Android 2.3 Gingerbread), although it doesn’t bring major hardware enhancements.

        • Huawei myTouch Smartphone Discovered Hanging In The Wild

          If you have been eagerly awaiting a first look at the upcoming Huawei myTouch line heading to T-Mobile, then we have good news for you. Thanks to a TmoNews ninja we’ve got a quick look at the upcoming non-QWERTY myTouch device, expected to arrive on store shelves in the coming months. At this point we don’t know much about the device, though we suspect a WVGA 800×480 resolution display and some other mid-range specs. The myTouch line isn’t billed as a high-end line for T-Mobile anymore — more as a “family” phone that has something for everyone. Huawei marks the third such manufacturer to release a device under the myTouch branding for T-Mobile, after HTC and LG.

        • Getac releases PS326: Android-powered, Milspec-carrying beast of a handset
        • Sony Releases Open Source Archive For The Xperia S, Includes Handy Build Instructions

          Sony released the Xperia S open source archive today, providing all the tools necessary to build a kernel and start cooking up ROMs for the Xperia S from Sony’s source code. In a post to Sony Mobile’s developer blog today, the company also noted that the opening of the Xperia S archive marks the first time Sony has published source code for a product built around Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S3.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

Free Software/Open Source

  • Big Switch Unveils ‘Open’ SDN Architecture
  • Killed email device Peek resurrected with open source app framework

    Amol Sarva, the man behind Peek, recently made waves by giving away his remaining stock of discontinued Peek devices to hackers interested in reusing them for something interesting (the company is still around, but it’s focusing on cloud-based software services now — the hardware, and the cellular service that underpins it, is dead). This all happened less than two months ago, but we’ve already got an open source application framework from a coder by the name of Ryan Krumins available for Peek hackers to take advantage of.

  • Big data enters open-source hype cycle

    Possibly. Open source was all the rage in the tech press for years as it promised to lower costs while improving enterprise IT freedom. Ultimately, a few start-ups cashed out big time (MySQL, JBoss), but for the most part the real value in open source came as both IT vendors and in-house IT organisations turned to open source to provide raw material for their software projects. Open source became less about sales and more about code, which was exactly what it was designed to do.

  • CARS Unveils Free Open-Source IBEAM Portal

    Consolidated Asset Recovery Systems launched a new open-source, freeware version of its IBEAM Web portal to the agent and lender community.

    The company highlighted this new version of IBEAM — available after April 15 — will be specific to repossession and invoice management, providing all the capabilities of asset tracking, real-time monitoring of updates, online condition reports and complete transparency throughout the recovery process.

  • 8 Free Open Source Alternatives To Microsoft Exchange
  • NTIDA advocates open source software

    The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) says Nigerians need open source software if the country must be a full participant in the software industry.

  • SaaS

    • EMC Intros Chorus Open-Source Big Data App
    • EMC wants to be the Linux of big data

      To broaden its reach in the big-data arena, disk-array maker EMC’s Greenplum division, which peddles data warehousing and Hadoop appliances and software, announced that it will open source its Chorus management and collaboration tools. EMC also has acquired Pivotal Labs, experts in agile programming, to help it build better big-data software and, equally importantly, help others do so.

      EMC has always been serious about data, but in case you haven’t noticed it, the company is now very serious about big data and the software that is used to chew it up and regurgitate useful bits of information.

  • CMS

    • DrupalCon 2012 Kicks Off in Denver

      The Drupal Association, hosts of the biannual DrupalCon conference, announced the opening of its North American DrupalCon in Denver, with more than 3,000 Website designers, developers, site architects and IT managers in attendance.

      The first day of full conference events at DrupalCon is March 20. Drupal is an open-source content management platform that powers millions of Websites and applications. Drupal is built, used and supported by a very active community of people from around the world, and that community comes together for DrupalCon.

  • Healthcare


    • GCC 5.0 set for a modular future?

      Version 4.7 of the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) is due out in April 2012 – a second release candidate was released last week. Discussions on the future direction of the utilities collection are currently underway. Musings over making GCC 5.0 more modular have attracted considerable attention. These have been inspired by the increasingly popular Low Level Virtual Machine (LLVM), a compiler infrastructure part-sponsored by Apple.

    • Interview: Richard Stallman

      RMS: The term “investment” is not applicable here, because that implies spending money on a business to obtain a larger subsequent profit. I set out to do a large job, but it wasn’t a business and the purpose was something more important than profit.

      I quit my job at MIT when I started writing code for the GNU operating system because I wanted to make sure MIT would not be able to claim copyright on the code I wrote for GNU.

      Evidently, financial support was not crucial at the beginning, because I made progress on my own, which drew others to help.

  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

  • Programming


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