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11.14.11

Links 14/11/2011: Mint Previews, ACTA Secrecy

Posted in News Roundup at 3:38 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • X.Org, Wayland, Open Gaming At FOSDEM 2012

        The Free and Open-source software Developer’s European Meeting (FOSDEM) is quickly approaching. The developer tracks/rooms for this huge open-source event have been announced.

        Among the interesting developer rooms for the 2012 event in Brussels, Belgium is X.Org, Open Mobile Linux, Mozilla, open-source virtualization/cloud, cross-desktop, open-source game development, LibreOffice, micro-kernel-based operating systems, and BSD operating systems. The full list of FOSDEM 2012 developer rooms is listed at the end of this posting.

  • Applications

    • This Week’s Top Downloads

      Firefox 8 Now Available (Windows,Mac,Linux) Firefox 8 officially releases on Mozilla’s site on November 8th, but technology blog GHacks discovered this morning that the Firefox 8.0 final version is already available for download for Windows, Mac, and Linux on Mozilla’s FTP servers.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Nvidia Optimus with Ironhide
      • Hostile Takeover: New Linux Game Inspired by X-Com and Fallout

        Hostile Takeover takes place in a not-too-distant future devastated by a global economic crisis. In a desperate attempt to counteract this crisis, the world’s governments agreed to grant all large corporations immunity from prosecution. This was meant to free corporations from the oppressions of control and legislation but instead cast the global business world into deadly conflicts. Now, no longer inhibited by law, corporations wage war. And within this new world, a new occupation has seen the light of day: corporate assassin.

      • Indie Royale ‘Difficult Second Bundle’ Hits 25,000 Sold, Adds Two New Games

        The Difficult Second Bundle, the latest independent game download bundle from the Indie Royale website has surpassed a major milestone: over 25,000 units sold in just two days.

        To commemorate, organizers have released two brand new games for all previous and future 2nd Bundle buyers – intense shmups Bullet Candy Perfect and Irukandji from Charlie’s Games, available on Windows, Mac, and Linux directly, or through download platform Desura.

  • Desktop Environments

  • Distributions

    • A Disappointing Review of #! 10 “Statler”

      Before I say anything else, I’d just like to say that the reason why I haven’t posted anything in 2 weeks has been due to me being quite busy with classes, my UROP, and other related stuff. I will definitely have another post out this week (and it’ll actually be a bit like this one), but I can’t really promise much more. After all, I did say that I couldn’t count on posting stuff regularly during the semester.

      Anyway, I haven’t done a post like this in a while; in fact, it’s been half a year, when I criticized Dedoimedo’s review of Bodhi Linux 0.1.6. There, I criticized the author for holding Bodhi Linux to an artificially higher standard and then trashing it from there. Well, this time around, it’s another Dedoimedo review that’s caused me to write this: this time, it’s the review of #! 10 “Statler”. Follow the jump to read my issues with the review.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Westford encourages Red Hat to stay

        On Oct. 17 voters at special Town Meeting approved a tax incentive for Red Hat, Inc., called a Tax Increment Financing agreement that is designed to encourage the company to remain in Westford and expand its current office space. But the vote does not guarantee that company officials will choose Westford over two California locations that remain on the table. What follows is an explanation of what the vote meant.

      • IT Public Relations; “Red Hat” Selects Promedia Turkey

        Red Hat, the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, has selected Promedia as its new PR agency-of-record, following a competitive review. Promedia will help Red Hat on a broad range of communications activities that are aimed at reaching target groups and maintaining relationships with the open source community in Turkey.

      • Red Hat Assists Israeli Startups to Increase Software Revenue

        Seven Israeli early stage technology companies with revenue of less than $1.5 million each were chosen to get free access to Red Hat enterprise software. The program will be expanded in Israel before being extended to other nations, Whitehurst said. Red Hat, based in Raleigh, North Carolina, will offer its software at a declining discount as the companies’ sales grow.

      • Fedora

        • Disk Encryption in Fedora 16

          No distribution’s installer makes setting up disk encryption as easy as Anaconda, the Fedora system installer. And that has not changed in Fedora 16, the latest stable release. On previous versions of Fedora, those released before Fedora 16, the only automated disk partitioning option was one based on LVM, the Linux Logical Volume Manager. That made it easy to install Fedora on encrypted LVM partitions.

        • The Perfect Desktop – Fedora 16 i686 (GNOME)
    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Sneak Peek: Linux Mint 12

              One that really pleased me with Linux Mint 12 is that it runs in VirtualBox with no configuration headaches to get GNOME 3 to run. Compare that to Fedora 16, which is a pain in the ass to deal with since you have to work to get GNOME 3.2 to actually load.

              Note though that if you boot into the live desktop in VirtualBox you will see the fall back desktop (not the GNOME 3.2). Don’t let that bother you, just do the install and make sure that your virtual machine has 3D set to on. When you boot into your installed desktop, GNOME 3 should load without a problem.

            • Linux Mint: Standing Out In a Crowd (Review & Screenshots)

              Linux Mint 12 (right now a release candidate) definitely stands out in the crowd of Gnome 3.x Shell Linux distributions. It seems the Linux Mint team cares deeply about giving the community what it wants but doesn’t have. Linux Mint 12 is a Gnome 3.x Shell distribution that stands out on its own because rather than accept the default Gnome 3.x Shell interface like most Gnome 3.x Shell Linux distributions have done Linux Mint 12 tries its best to emulate the Gnome 2.x interface through the use of Gnome Shell extensions.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Remembering the promise of FLOSS

    Today is Veteran’s Day here in the U.S. and Remembrance Day in the Commonwealth of Nations. It’s a holiday that gets a bit of short shrift these days, so it’s important to take a moment and understand that we have a lot of people to thank for the freedoms we now enjoy.

    And there is a lot of work still to do.

    That work is being done by armed forces around the world, and it can also be done by us.

    In the last decade, one of the ways the free and open source software communities were going to work on the problems of global illiteracy and information distribution was to be the source of computer software for developing nations.

    With grand plans like the One Laptop Per Child program in place, the FLOSS community was gung-ho on the notion of delivering great software at a perfect cost: free.

  • OpenGeo Establishes Victoria Office
  • The Weather Channel chooses Talend open source MDM over Microsoft

    The Weather Channel LLC has chosen open source master data management (MDM) tools from Talend over competing proprietary products from Microsoft Corp. and other software vendors, an official with the organization said.

    The Atlanta, Ga.-based news outlet — which is devoted to all things weather — said the plan to go with Talend Enterprise MDM stemmed from a longstanding commitment to open source technology and the fact that it has already been successfully using Talend data integration software for the last two years.

    The Weather Channel, which began implementing the open source MDM platform last week, says it was drawn to the idea that the software package fully integrates with the Talend extract, transform and load (ETL) tools already in use. The company also liked that Talend Enterprise MDM comes pre-packaged with data quality and data integration tools of its own.

    “We looked a little bit at a couple of players in the space, mainly Microsoft,” said Ben Garrett, the company’s director of advertising technology and business intelligence (BI). “But the compelling argument for us was that, because we are already ingrained with Talend, it made perfect sense for us to pursue this as the right path.”

  • Interest in deploying open-source clouds is rising–survey

    As interest in open-source cloud computing continues to grow, a new–albeit self-interested–survey shows that users are looking to move from experiments to production deployments.

    Today, systems management software provider Zenoss released the results of what they’ve titled the “OpenStack Adoption Survey”. (OpenStack is an open-source cloud operating system.) The data was culled from 772 surveys filled out at the recent OpenStack Conference in Boston and the Zenoss open source management community.

  • Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) Provides Open Source Software To Energy Industry
  • Bechtolsheim: AWS, open source rewrite rules for startups

    “Software programming levels have improved from C to C++ to Java to Ruby to you name it. You can now do more with fewer people and open source deserves all the credit here for creating and maintaining these tools,” he said.

  • Events

    • ELCE11: Till Jaeger on AVM vs. Cybits

      German lawyer Till Jaeger came to the Embedded Linux Conference Europe to update attendees on the AVM vs. Cybits case that is currently underway in Germany. The case has some potentially serious implications for users of GPL-licensed software, particularly in embedded Linux contexts, so Jaeger (and his client Harald Welte) felt it was important to publicize the details of the case. So important, in fact, that he and Welte are forgoing the usual practice of keeping all of the privileged information (between a lawyer and client) private.

    • Lucene Eurocon 2011: Day One

      As we wrote a few days ago we are back from this years Lucene Eurocon, which took place in Barcelona. Despite the fact that the videos will be available shortly, we decided to write something about those presentations we attended.

    • Grab Your Free Ticket To Asia’s #1 Open Source Event

      Wish to avail this ‘Silver’ opportunity to attend Open Source India 2011, Asia’s mega open source convention, for FREE? All you need to do is click on this link and register for your FREE Sliver Pass (which is otherwise worth Rs 1000). But you need to hurry as this offer is available only for the first 500 registrants.

    • Jimmy Wales To Open The First WikiConference In India

      The Wikipedia Community and the Wikimedia Chapter are hosting a WikiConference for the first in the country in Mumbai next week. The three day event that will see a congregation of thousands of Wikipedians from all over the country, will be opened by Jimmy Wales, the founder, open-source evangelist and chairman emeritus of Wikimedia Foundation.

    • Open Source Meets Mobile in Ashoka’s Citizen Media Competition

      Mobile was a major theme running through many of the finalists — most likely because in developing nations, mobile phone use is often more widespread than Internet connectivity, so many people depend on their cell phones as a way to receive crucial information. Open-source software was the platform of choice for many entries. For more on that, Knight-Mozilla’s Dan Sinker has written quite a bit on the intersection of open-source culture and journalism. Security, too, loomed large among entries. Anyone who followed the Arab Spring probably saw examples of how anonymity and security are necessary for real-time reporting of conflicts.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla Releases Firefox 8 with Twitter Search

        New features of the Firefox 8 release, which is for desktop editions of Windows, Linux, Mac, and mobile Firefox for Android, includes Twitter search integration, increased support for WebGL graphics hardware acceleration, and on demand tab-group loading. Mozilla explained in its blog post that with the inclusion of Twitter search in Firefox 8, “Twitter search in Firefox makes it easier to discover new topics, #hashtags, and usernames.” Languages supported for the new Twitter search function are English, Portuguese, Slovenian, and Japanese, but the company will release versions for other languages in the future.

      • Knight-Mozilla names news technology fellowship winners

        Five developers, designers and programmer-journalists funded by the Knight-Mozilla News Technology Partnership are to spend a year in five national newsrooms around the world.

        Al Jazeera English, the Guardian, the BBC, Zeit Online and the Boston Globe will each be joined by a winner to produce open-source code and solve challenges within the news organisation.

  • SaaS

    • Tech sugar daddies shovel millions into Hadoop war

      There was once an idyllic time when people like Joe Kraus described an entrepreneur’s dream of starting robust companies on a shoestring budget, powered by open-source software and cloud infrastructure. Apparently Cloudera and Hortonworks didn’t get the memo. Both Hadoop competitors recently raised mountains of cash at sky-high valuations, fuelled by open-source software and cloud infrastructure. And now Cloudera investor Ping Li has declared that his firm, Accel, is prepared to dump $100m more into Hadoop’s meta-market, Big Data.

      What gives?

      Well, venture capitalists do, for one, and at valuations that entrepreneurs might be unwise to pass up. In a hot market like Big Data, where Cloudera and Hortonworks compete, it seems that VCs are trying to preempt competition by going very big, very fast, in a scorched earth policy of sorts for would-be competitors. It’s hard to imagine other VCs having the appetite to find other Hadoop companies when Cloudera and Hortonworks are so richly resourced.

    • Rackspace Launches OpenStack Private Cloud

      Rackspace Hosting continues to lease data center space, even as it extends its business beyond its own facilities, as seen in this week’s announcement of its Rackspace Cloud: Private Edition. The new private cloud is powered by OpenStack, the open source cloud computing platform organized by Rackspace at last year.

    • Hadoop Start-Up Cloudera Teams Up With Storage Player NetApp

      If a company has a batch of data of any reasonable size and wants to do anything useful with it, chances are that at one point or another it’s going to wind up using some version of Hadoop.

    • Open Source Cloud Service Launched by DuraSpace
    • Hadoop-based startup Cloudera raises $40M from Ignition Partners, Accel, Greylock
    • Who’s Hawking Hadoop? Just About Everyone

      In recent months, the likes of Dell, Oracle, and EMC have unveiled what they bill as specialized hardware appliances for Hadoop, and on Monday, they were joined by storage hardware outfit and EMC rival NetApp, which announced a creation it calls the NetApp Open Solution for Hadoop.

      Named for the yellow stuffed elephant that belonged to the son of its original developer, Hadoop is an open source software platform that analyzes data by splitting it into tiny pieces and distributing it across a large cluster of machines. The platform was originally built by Yahoo! using research papers published by Google, and it helps drive such web operations as Facebook, Twitter, and eBay. But Hadoop is evolving into a tool for the average business — which faces its own avalanche of unstructured data pouring from the web.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Does Oracle’s Larry Ellison care about open source and Java?

      Oracle’s indefatigable efforts to convince the world that it truly will pump effort and resources into open source continue. The newest “stewards” of the Java platform and language have used the Java OpenJDK mailing list to detail plans for the JavaFX rich Internet application (RIA) platform.

  • CMS

    • Acquia to push use of free website building software in India

      Open-source software company Acquia today said it will expand its presence in India to promote use of free website building software Drupal.

      “We have two training partners in India, which we are planning to scale up massively. In this visit we are doing need analysis of Indian market and soon we will announce initiative specific to India,” Chief Marketing Officer Ronald C Pruett, Jr. said.

  • Education

  • Business

    • Semi-Open Source

      • 10 Questions for Fonality CFO Dan Rosenthal
      • Alfresco: An open-source ECM alternative for SharePoint

        In any business organization, the need to effectively communicate and collaborate in a timely manner is very important. Contending with mobile workers and shifting schedules, many businesses look toward enterprise content management (ECM) systems such as Microsoft’s SharePoint. Their purpose is to allow users within organizations to collaborate and share work inside of a commonly accessed website framework.

      • A faster Web server: ripping out Apache for Nginx

        Like so many others, I eventually decided to put my own website up on the Internets, and I used the Apache HTTP server to host it. Why? I had an Ubuntu server box sitting in front of me, and Apache was the Web server I’d heard about the most. If Apache was good enough for big sites, it should be good enough for my little static personal site. Right?

        But it wasn’t quite right for me. Here’s why—and what I learned when I spent a weekend ripping out my Apache install and replacing it with lightweight speed demon of a Web server called Nginx.

      • Talend’s New Community Coders Program Highlights Vendor’s Open Source Contributions
  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

    • CESG: Open-source software is secure enough for us

      It is wrong to believe that open-source software is implicitly insecure, according to Qamar Yunus, the government’s main official on the subject.

      Yunus, an assistant director in the Cabinet Office ICT policy team, made the comment on Monday, as he outlined the organisation’s guidance on open-source software at the EHI Live event in Birmingham.

      “There was a myth being circulated around the SIs, saying you can’t use open-source software in government as it’s not secure,” Yunus told the conference, referring to the systems integrators who account for large amounts of government ICT spending.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Hadoop-based startup Cloudera raises $40M from Ignition Partners, Accel, Greylock

      OpenFlow is an open source project borne of a six-year research collaboration between Stanford University and the University of California at Berkeley. It’s a programmatic interface and protocol that enables software-defined networking, which means that users can define flows and determine what paths those flows take through a network via software, regardless of the underlying hardware.

    • Superdesk is an open-source newsroom for citizen media

      Superdesk is a newsroom tool that gives journalists the ability to source, manage, verify, process and eventually present the facts behind a story, across multiple platforms and media — including the web, mobile, radio, television and print.

      The plan is to make the newsroom process collaborative and open-source — pulling in data from wire services, APIs and other sources, letting journalists and editors create content, edit it and even translate it, and then publish or broadcast it. The idea, essentially, is to detach the content from the medium, standardising it so it can easily be passed around a newsroom in a universal format.

  • Programming

    • ActiveState enhances Stackato PaaS

      ActiveState Software today announced new cloud application management and monitoring features for Stackato – its infrastructure-agnostic, polyglot private platform-as-a-service (PaaS).

      Built on VMware-based Cloud Foundry open source project, Stackato is designed to enable private PaaS for Python, Java, Ruby, PHP, Perl and Node.js-based applications.

    • StackIQ Releases Rocks+ 6.0

      StackIQ today announced the immediate availability of Rocks+ 6, the comprehensive software suite for automating the deployment and management of Big Infrastructure. Rocks+ 6 is designed for environments having hundreds or thousands of servers supporting Big Data, Analytics, or High Performance computing. These environments require powerful management software that turns loosely coupled commodity hardware and open source software into tightly coupled enterprise grade appliances, and StackIQ has been building software to do that for years. With thousands of satisfied customers using Rocks today, StackIQ is well positioned to solve the Big Infrastructure problem.

Leftovers

  • Adventures with Outlook 2010 Problems

    I’ve written recently about Exchange problems and how Outlook problems have been overwhelming the Help Desk. Another issue popped up that tops the cake. It was brought to my attention that some users, receiving some emails, cannot see PDF attachments. But, not only does Outlook refuse to show the attachments, it gives no indication to the user that there is something wrong. So, the user has no idea that there are attachments, other than relying on the sender to notify them in some way. We verified that the attachments are in the message, because Outlook reports the message size correctly which takes into account the extra size that the attachments take up. And, when having the user log in to Outlook Web App, the attachments show up. Seriously, this is idiotic. This is just unexcusable when you are dealing with customers and need to have reliable email correspondence. Already this has caused issues, since the customer needs to ask our staff if they got the attachment and why they have not responded regarding it. Our staff explains that they never got the attachment and back and forth fun begins.

  • Why Windows Phone 7 Is Too Late

    The Windows Phone 7.5 interface is interesting, but no more so than that of Android or iOS. Partnering with Nokia was a bold move, but in the end will be like climbing into a sinking lifeboat. The mobile-market ship has sailed, and while business users will continue to use Microsoft’s products, they will more frequently access them through the devices and operating systems of their competitors.

  • Security

  • Finance

    • Geithner Grilled on Goldman Sachs

      Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner found himself on the defensive Tuesday, trying to assuage Rep. Maxine Waters about the role Wall Street behemoth Goldman Sachs played in the lead-up to the federal bailout.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Digital Divide Persists Even as Broadband Adoption Grows

      Broadband Internet adoption has skyrocketed over the last decade in the U.S, though adoption hasn’t been entirely evenly spread across all Americans. That’s the conclusion from a new Exploring the Digital Nation report from The Department of Commerce’s Economics and Statistics Administration (ESA) and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).

      The report is a followup to one released in 2010 that came to a similar set of conclusions about the so-called digital divide between those that have broadband Internet access and those that do not.

  • Copyrights

    • Warner Bros. Admits Sending HotFile False Takedown Requests

      Hollywood movie studio Warner Bros. has admitted to a federal court that it removed files from the file-hosting site Hotfile without owning the copyrights. Some of the false takedowns were the result of failing filtering software but Warner also admitted that one of its employees deleted Open Source software that could speed up downloads.

    • ACTA

      • INTA chairman defends secrecy

        On 9 November we sent the Chairman of the European Parliament Committee on International Trade (INTA), Mr Moreira, an open letter in which we protested against an INTA meeting behind closed doors on ACTA. On 10 November Mr Moreira replied.

        Below you will find his letter and our reply. Mr Moreira defends the secrecy: the document is, for the time being, confidential. We maintain that secrecy is not compatible with “utmost transparency” (art 103 European Parliament Rules of Procedure).

11.13.11

Links 13/11/2011: Linux Mint 12 “Lisa” RC, Sugar on a Stick 6

Posted in News Roundup at 6:10 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • A Measurement of Popularity of GNU/Linux and That Other OS in Canada and China

    Clearly, GNU/Linux has a dominant position in China by this measure. With hundreds of millions soon to gain access to IT in China, GNU/Linux has a bright future.

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 173
  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • The Increasing Size Of The Linux Kernel

      Floating around the Linux kernel mailing list information is some new data about the evolution of the Linux kernel’s size. Obviously, it’s getting larger.

      Jérôme Pinot took the size of every Linux kernel (the .tar.bz2 package) since Linux 1.0 and through the recent Linux 3.1 kernel release and plotted it out. It’s comparing the size of the kernel versus the release number (not against the time). His findings are that “Impressive, it’s mostly exponential. If dev keeps same pace, we should break the 100MB at linux 3.19.”

    • Linux power regression + overheating problem on ThinkPad [fixed?]

      This blog post isn’t only directed to ThinkPad owners as most notebook Linux users with Intel Core Duo 1/2 and i3/i5/i7 processors have been affected by this bug if not all. And yes, this problem is present on latest Debian Unstable and Ubuntu 11.10.

    • Graphics Stack

      • S3TC Now Golden For Linux & Open-Source?

        Many Phoronix readers have written in asking about the news this week concerning HTC joining the Open Invention Network. In particular, many Phoronix readers are interested in HTC joining OIN due to their acquisition of S3 Graphics earlier in the year and the accumulated graphics IP portfolio.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Speeding up KDM

      For some time, I have been noticing that KDE Display Manager (KDM) slows down after every version bump. I was of the idea that this was because KDE was becoming bloated. However, CPU usage of KDE had started declining after version 4.4. So, I was sure that KDE was actually not getting hung up in the background any more. However, till 4.7 the KDM load time kept increasing. As a matter of fact, after the recent update, KDM became so slow that I had to restart my system twice before actually getting to KDM. In fact, during the first two restarts, I was thinking that my installation was broken after the update.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • A Guide to the KDE Notification System
      • Work (not) done

        In fact the feature was finished some weeks ago with a complete transition to KWin. Unfortunately it turned out that there is one possible situation for a race condition which could lead to a desktop being unlocked in the worst case if KWin crashes. Of course it would not be possible to trigger a crash when the screen is locked, but KWin relies and integrates libraries which are out of our own control (e.g. think of drivers).

  • Distributions

    • Chakra Edn 2011.11 review

      With this release, there is a DVD and a CD installation image. The CD image contains very few applications, while the DVD image is relatively loaded. This review is based on test installations of the DVD image on real hardware and in a virtual environment.

    • New Releases

      • Parted Magic 11.11.11 Has Firefox 8.0 and Kernel 3.1
      • Zorin 3.2
      • Press Release: Sabayon Linux 7 Experimental Releases

        Directly from our “Breaking Stuff” dept., three new Sabayon 7 releases have seen the light!
        These releases all go under the “Experimental” umbrella, not that because

        * LXDE is a minimal, CD-sized flavour geared towards low-end computers, shipping the LXDE Desktop Environment.
        * E17 is a minimal, CD-sized flavour made for people wanting to showcase the magic of Enlightenment 17.
        * Awesome is a first timer here, thanks to Brian Tomlinson efforts, Sabayon has now an Awesome WM flavour as well.

      • Parted Magic 11.11.11 brings Linux 3.1

        Parted Magic lead developer Patrick J. Verner has announced the release of version 11.11.11 of his open source, multi-platform partitioning tool. Based on the Linux 3.1 kernel, the new release introduces a new versioning system (the previous version was 6.7) and upgrades a number of the included applications.

      • Sugar Labs Releases Sugar on a Stick v6 (Pineapple)

        You can download SoaS v6 via bittorrent or direct downloads by heading over to this page. The accompanying installation instructions for various operating systems are available here.

        As you can see from the screenshot above I gave SoaS a spin around the block using VirtualBox on my Windows 7 laptop and it worked like a charm. As I have access to XOs I personally don’t need SoaS that often but I do use it occassionally to show off Sugar during presentations or talks I give.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • PCLinuxOS review

        PCLinuxOS has been around since 2003. It started off as a set of RPM packages to improve Mandrake (now Mandriva) Linux. Eventually it grew and changed and became a standalone distro in it’s own right.

        PCLinuxOS uses APT-RPM as it’s package management system. Basically, it uses APT and Synaptic, but on RPM packages instead of DEB. It’s used a variety of desktop environments in it’s time, but currently (version 2011.09), KDE is the only desktop environment available officially.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • [Interview] Jared Smith – Fedora Project Leader

          Jared Smith has been associated with the Fedora Project for several years and currently is the Project Leader. In an exclusive interview with devworx, he spoke on Fedora 16, the btrfs filesystem, other Linux projects and more! Jared said his role is all about bridging the gap between the Fedora user community, developers and Red Hat. To Red Hat as a company, he represents the Fedora community, while to the Fedora community, he represents Red Hat. That way, the bridges of communication always stay open in the community side as well as the corporate side.

        • Fedora 16 Isn’t Ruthless Underneath It All – It Just Needs Some Love and Understanding

          I admit, my brief tryst with Fedora 16 the other night has been stuck in my mind. It was good. Really good. I guess I had a few preconceptions going in. When you go with IBM, when you date that FBI agent, or that covert military assassin, you just expect some kind of perfection. They’ve got to have hard-core discipline, they had to work everything out well in advance. A downright ruthless execution in the name of perfection.

        • Fedora 16 XFCE

          So, I also updated and here are my impressions :-D XFCE live cd works like a breeze, installation went smooth. I even got wifi (broadcomm) working out of box (suspend works for me too, btw.)! GRUB 2 seems nice, although it associated detected kernels with the newly installed Fedora. Still better than nothing from grub 1 >:-D Now for the system itself. GDM suck. It sucks hard. As soon as I installed some of gnome as deps it started putting gnome instead of xfce to session. It also does not seem to allow for keyboard and language selection. I need to switch to LXDM or try out LightDM soon… XFCE works as expected, after copying old configuration and installing apps I use, almost everything seems to work.

        • Fedora 16 impressions

          For those who wonder “what updates are already pushed out”, there aren’t that many updates for Fedora 16, which I suppose is a good indicator of its stability at release. My update was 55MB, and took only a few minutes while I did other things.

    • Debian Family

      • Introducing Commodore OS Vision

        Commodore OS Vision stands on the shoulders of giants, with a lineage that traces back to fantastic linux operating system distributions such as Debian, Ubuntu and Mint, which you might also be interested in installing on our machines. Commodore OS Vision auto-installs a graphical operating system boot menu facilitating this further, making your new Commodore machine a technology tinkerers delight.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • 6 Key Changes in Next Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

            Canonical is in a hurry. After the successful release of Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot, it’s time to plan for next, more important, Ubuntu 12.04 LTS release. Ubuntu 12.04 is codenamed “Precise Pangolin” and following are the important changes in the upcoming Ubuntu 12.04 release, as decided upon during recently concluded Ubuntu Developer Summit.

          • Ubuntu Friendly: A User-Submitted Database Of Computers That Work With Ubuntu

            Do you want to know if your computer will work with Ubuntu? Head to Ubuntu Friendly to quickly find out. It’s an ever-growing database of computers known to work flawlessly with everyone’s favorite Linux-based operating system. Do you want to help make that website useful? Run the system test on your computer running Ubuntu right now. You will run tests on your wireless card, your sound and more.

          • QA Community Coordinator Required: Apply Within

            I am looking to hire a new member for my team (the Community Team) here at Canonical. I am looking for a bright, motivated, and experienced person to build, maintain and develop a cohesive, productive and effective Ubuntu QA community. I am looking for someone with solid QA experience particular in the areas of testing and defect management.

          • Ubuntu Development Update
          • Entitlement? No. Sharing? Yes.
          • Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Enable Alt+F2 Run Command Prompt
          • Flavours and Variants

            • Linux Mint 12 RC Lisa Has Been Released | What’s New | Download

              Earlier preview added by LinuxMint shows quite the same new features mentioned on the release notes of Linux Mint 12 RC Lisa. Linux Mint 12 based on Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot, It comes with Gnome 3 and Mint Gnome Shell Extension. MGSE featuring with the new bottom panel, applications menu, window list, visible system tray icons and a task-centric desktop allows you to easily switch with between running applications using Alt+Tab.

            • First Look: Linux Mint 12

              Clement Lefebvre, father of the Linux Mint project, announced a few days ago that the upcoming Linux Mint 12 (Lisa) operating system will feature a new desktop interface built on top of the GNOME 3 desktop environment.

              So, we’ve downloaded a development version of the Linux Mint 12 distribution and took it for a test drive, to see that amazing new interface everyone is talking about, that Unity killer.

              To our surprise, it appears that Linux Mint 12′s new interface, called MGSE (Mint Gnime Shell Extensions) is actually a small modification of the GNOME 3′s GNOME Shell interface.

            • Linux Mint 12 (Lisa) RC Out Today!

              I like Mint… it is not the distro I run on my own system, that is Ubuntu, but I am VERY impressed with Mint. This new version looks very cool. Time to play!

            • Linux Mint 12 “Lisa” RC released!
  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Asus unveils quad-core Tegra 3 Android tablet

        Asus announced the first quad-core Android tablet, featuring the newly shipping Nvidia Tegra 3 clocked to 1.3GHz. The Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime is slimmer (0.33 inches) and lighter (1.29 pounds) than the original Transformer, and offers a 10.1-inch display,an eight-megapixel camera, and up to 12 hours of claimed battery life — or 18 hours when plugged into the optional keyboard dock.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Web Browsers

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • OpenOffice.org or LibreOffice – Two excellent choices

      Just over a year ago the open source Office Suite world was disturbed by indecision, much the same way world stock markets have been upset by uncertainty today. Oracle had purchased Sun Microsystems and with it the “ownership” of the open source office suite OpenOffice.org.

    • LibreOffice at Free Software Conference 2011, Budapest

      The Free Software Conference and Exhibition 2011 organized by FSF.hu Foundation was held today in Budapest. With more than 500 participants, it was the biggest free software event in Hungary this year. I think it was a great success, there were many good presentations in 4 tracks, and there was also a room for workshops.

  • Public Services/Government

    • What caused the financial crisis? The Big Lie goes viral.

      I have a fairly simple approach to investing: Start with data and objective evidence to determine the dominant elements driving the market action right now. Figure out what objective reality is beneath all of the noise. Use that information to try to make intelligent investing decisions.

      But then, I’m an investor focused on preserving capital and managing risk. I’m not out to win the next election or drive the debate. For those who are, facts and data matter much less than a narrative that supports their interests.

      One group has been especially vocal about shaping a new narrative of the credit crisis and economic collapse: those whose bad judgment and failed philosophy helped cause the crisis.

      Rather than admit the error of their ways — Repent! — these people are engaged in an active campaign to rewrite history. They are not, of course, exonerated in doing so. And beyond that, they damage the process of repairing what was broken. They muddy the waters when it comes to holding guilty parties responsible. They prevent measures from being put into place to prevent another crisis.

      Here is the surprising takeaway: They are winning. Thanks to the endless repetition of the Big Lie.

      A Big Lie is so colossal that no one would believe that someone could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. There are many examples: Claims that Earth is not warming, or that evolution is not the best thesis we have for how humans developed. Those opposed to stimulus spending have gone so far as to claim that the infrastructure of the United States is just fine, Grade A (not D, as the we discussed last month), and needs little repair.

      Wall Street has its own version: Its Big Lie is that banks and investment houses are merely victims of the crash. You see, the entire boom and bust was caused by misguided government policies. It was not irresponsible lending or derivative or excess leverage or misguided compensation packages, but rather long-standing housing policies that were at fault.

Leftovers

  • Finance

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • Intelligence agencies step up the Twitter and Facebook trawling

      A couple of days ago, the Associated Press reported that the Department of Homeland Security claims not to be “actively monitoring” social media networks like Facebook and Twitter. Lest you worry that status updates that present a threat to national security are going unread, the AP today reports that the Central Intelligence Agency is actively monitoring social media networks.

      The story in the earlier article was that our sprawling intelligence and national security apparatus was caught off-guard by social media-fueled uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa, and that they were going to take steps to be better prepared in the future.

  • Copyrights

    • How ‘Playing It Safe’ Cripples Fair Use

      This is about how over-budgeted media productions historically paid to license things they didn’t need to license, just because they had tons of money and their lawyers preferred to “play it safe” rather than claim Fair Use, which is how Fair Use became the weak pathetic limping layer of pointlessness it is today.

11.12.11

Links 12/11/2011: More Sabayon Linux 7 ‘Flavours’

Posted in News Roundup at 8:51 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Goodbye BIOS, hello UEFI

    When you turn on your computer, a primitive system that dates back more than 30 years, the basic input/output system (BIOS), turns your cold hardware into a functioning system that your operating system can then boot from. Alas, it’s sadly out of date. PC makers have slowly been replacing BIOS with the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI). That’s all well and good, but one UEFI feature, Secure Boot, could be used to lock PCs into being only able to boot one operating system: Windows 8.

  • iOS upgrade swells iPhone battery-suckage grief
  • Security

  • Finance

    • For Bank Of America, Debit Fees Extend To Unemployment Benefits

      usiness plan. Out of work for much of the last three years, she depends upon a $264-a-week unemployment check from the state of South Carolina. But the state has contracted with Bank of America to administer its unemployment benefits, and Busby has frequently found herself incurring bank fees to get her money.

      To withdraw her benefits, Busby, 33, uses a Bank of America prepaid debit card on which the state deposits her funds. She could visit a Bank of America ATM free of charge. But this small community in the state’s rural center, her hometown, does not have a Bank of America branch. Neither do the surrounding towns where she drops off her kids at school and attends church.

    • TOM THE DANCING BUG: Whose Encampment Should Crowd-Control Police Be Breaking Up?
  • Civil Rights

    • The WikiLeaks-Fueled Erosion of Civil Liberties Has Begun

      When a federal judge ruled that Twitter must reveal the private data of three WikiLeaks associates on Thursday, privacy advocates died a little inside. The two organizations that had defended the three users, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Electronic Frontier Foundations (EFF), immediately filed mournful blog posts that respectively raised doubts about the United States government’s secretive handling of the case and highlighted grave message the ruling sends about the future of privacy on the internet. But Wall Street Journal reporter Jennifer Valentine-DeVries sums up the implications of the case best with a leading question: “Should the government be able to collect information related to your Internet use without a warrant?” We now know that the federal court’s answer is, “Yes.”

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Turncoat EU Parliament Gives Up on Defending Free Wireless Communications

      In discussions on the future of wireless communications policies, the EU Parliament is giving in to Member States by accepting a watered-down version1 of the Radio Spectrum Policy Programme. Last Spring, the Parliament had made very constructive proposals in favour of open spectrum policies, calling2 for citizen-controlled wireless communications. Sadly, the first major effort to harmonise spectrum policy in Europe is being held back by EU governments’ conservatism and the Parliament’s surrender.

    • Digital Divide Persists Even as Broadband Adoption Grows

      Broadband Internet adoption has skyrocketed over the last decade in the U.S, though adoption hasn’t been entirely evenly spread across all Americans. That’s the conclusion from a new Exploring the Digital Nation report from The Department of Commerce’s Economics and Statistics Administration (ESA) and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).

      The report is a followup to one released in 2010 that came to a similar set of conclusions about the so-called digital divide between those that have broadband Internet access and those that do not.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Proudhon: if IP is property, is it theft?

      Here is a thought provoking article on how the distribution of income gives the top one percent such a disproportionate share of output link here. It finds the source in French anarchist Proudhon’s cry that “Property is theft,” and asserts “The biggest “theft” by the [richest] 1 percent has been of the primary source of wealth – knowledge – for its own benefit.”

11.11.11

Links 11/11/2011: Vodafone Ubuntu Webbook, Parted Magic 11.11.11

Posted in News Roundup at 6:32 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Ken Starks: The Unsung Hero

    Ken Starks is, by all standards, a normal guy. He lives in the Austin, Texas area, worked hard his entire life, raised a family, and has lived a mostly good life. Around 2005, Ken was pressure washing a building 38 feet in the air, when the lift failed. He came crashing to the ground, fracturing his spine at the neck. Thus ended one career, and began a new one.

    Ken is an extraordinary person. Not because he tried to be. If you ask him about what he does, he is very modest about it, and quick to push the credit off to other people. But without Ken, projects like The Helios Initiative wouldn’t exist.

  • HeliOS Seeks Official Wallpaper
  • Desktop

    • Vodafone Ubuntu Webbook

      An Ubuntu Webbook was recently launched in South Africa by Vodafone, to be distributed by local telecoms carrier Vodacom. Netbooks have been squeezed out by budget tablets and ultrabooks in the northern hemisphere, but in a market where access to computers is poor, netbooks represent a great stepping stone between full-sized laptops and limited-capability mobile phones. Then there’s the free Linux OS which helps keep costs down, and voila – the Vodafone Webbook.

    • Vodafone Webbook review

      Tablet PCs may be all the rage, but most of them can be fairly pricey. Sure, there are units like the Aakash that aim to lower the price barrier substantially, but some may want something a little more fully featured, which is where the Vodafone Webbook comes in.

    • The Computer I Need

      Could I buy a refurbished one from you?” We got him an old laptop that fit the budget of a PhD researcher. The next week when we spoke with him his speech had doubled in speed. It continues to increase gradually and now nearly matches a typical speech tempo. This is an extreme example, but try it yourself: take note of what type of computer someone uses and see if it correlates to the way they speak and interact.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • A Proper Solution To The Linux ASPM Problem

      At long last, it looks like there is an adequate solution to the Active State Power Management (ASPM) problem in the Linux kernel , a.k.a. the well-known and wide-spread power regression in the Linux 2.6.38 kernel, which has been causing many laptops to go through significantly more power than they should. This is not another workaround, but rather a behavioral change in the kernel to better decide when the PCI Express ASPM support should be toggled.

    • A Proper Solution To The Linux ASPM Problem

      At long last, it looks like there is an adequate solution to the Active State Power Management (ASPM) problem in the Linux kernel , a.k.a. the well-known and wide-spread power regression in the Linux 2.6.38 kernel, which has been causing many laptops to go through significantly more power than they should. This is not another workaround, but rather a behavioral change in the kernel to better decide when the PCI Express ASPM support should be toggled.

      Since the release of the Linux 2.6.38 kernel in March of this year, a significant number of mobile and desktop systems using this release (or any post-2.6.38 kernel) have noticed a significant increase in power consumption. I had spotted Ubuntu 11.04 development releases going through much more power than earlier releases and then traced it down to being a regression within the Linux 2.6.38 kernel and affecting all distributions using this kernel. The Phoronix Test Suite stack automatically bisected the issue down to being a change in how ASPM is handled.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • XFCE: Your Lightweight, Speedy, Fully-Fledged Linux Desktop

      As far as Linux goes, customization is king. Not only that, but the customization options are so great it might make your head spin. If you’ve been following my last couple of articles, you might notice that I’ve been stressing that fact quite a bit. I mentioned the differences between the major desktop environments available on Linux in this article, and then realized that we at MakeUseOf have only been talking extensively about two of the three desktop environments that I mentioned. So, without further ado, here’s your crash course on XFCE.

    • Meet Kellogg’s Sludge Puppet

      A new puppet’s in town! His name is Karden, and according to his PR, he shows kids how much fun gardening can be. What parents and teachers aren’t told is that he is actually a marketing tool for sewage sludge merchant Kellogg Garden Products.

      Books featuring Karden, available at common bookstores, and an “Idea Factory” website devoted to him, are full of gardening activities for parents and teachers to do with their kids. Karden throws free kids’ gardening events at bookstores and hardware stores.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KDE Plasma 4.8 Boosts Speed, Power Management

        KDE’s Aaron Seigo has a new blog post to share about improvements to Plasma Workspaces in the forthcoming KDE Software Compilation 4.8.

        Among the improvements that Seigo talks about in this Plasma Workspaces 4.8 posting is the OpenGL ES and Compositing Performance improvements (thanks to Martin Gräßlin’s continued work on KWin), lots of bug fixes, and improved power management. The improved power management is also fixing a large number of stability/predictability-related bugs, such as for handling multi-screen power management situations, etc.

    • GNOME Desktop

  • Distributions

    • Pardus Corporate 2 Kurumsal – quick, powerful, rogue

      I have confessed several times that KDE is my favorite Desktop Environment. And even more, that I prefer KDE3 to KDE4. That’s why every time I approach Linux distribution with KDE3 on top, I am full of awe.

    • SuperX 1 Screen Shots
    • New Releases

      • Parted Magic 11.11.11 brings Linux 3.1

        Parted Magic lead developer Patrick J. Verner has announced the release of version 11.11.11 of his open source, multi-platform partitioning tool. Based on the Linux 3.1 kernel, the new release introduces a new versioning system (the previous version was 6.7) and upgrades a number of the included applications.

    • Gentoo Family

      • Sabayon Releases Even More Choice

        Like regular Sabayon 7, these fresh spins come with Linux 3.1, Ext4 filesystem is default (btrfs supported), support for encryption, fast install, lightweight GCC implementation, and over 4000 software updates. Some of the software included on the E17 CD is Ristretto image viewer, Midori, Pidgin, Xnoise media player, and more. More can be easily installed from Sabayon’s well-stocked repositories using the software manager.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • AMD decTOP running Debian Squeeze

        After upgrading my AMD decTOP with 160GB hdd, I’ve decided to install a fresh new operating system on it for some side-project that I’m working on. I choose to install Debian GNU/Linux 6.0.3 (Squeeze) on the machine.

        The machine is currently running lighttpd web server with PHP5, samba server and sshd (using public-key authentication).

      • FileTea now available in Debian

        In the past few weeks I’ve been preparing the Debian packages of FileTea and its companion EventDance. They’re finally available.

        FileTea is a free, web-based file sharing system that just works. It only requires a browser, and no user registration is needed. If you want to know more about it, you can read my previous blog post. For a more detailed description, read Nathan Willis’s excellent article on LWN.net. There have been a few changes since that article (HTTPS support in particular) but it’s still the best one you can find on the net.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Clone Wolf: Protector Is Out For GNU/Linux !
          • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 240

            In this Issue we cover:

            * Ubuntu Community mourns the loss of Andre Gondim
            * Ubuntu on phones, tablets, TV’s and smart screens everywhere
            * End of support for Ubuntu 10.04 (Lucid Lynx) Netbook and ARM – 2011/10/29
            * UDS Video Interviews
            * Community Acknowledgements and Success Stories
            * Ubuntu Stats
            * LoCo News
            * Ubuntu Cloud News
            * Nathan Haines: Ubucon SCaLE10X Needs You!
            * David Wonderly: The Ignored Group of Ubuntu
            * Daniel Holbach: Survey Summary: Getting involved with Ubuntu development
            * Scott Lavender: A Kernel for All Seasons
            * Jorge Castro: Power user’s team 12.04 roadmap.
            * Edubuntu: Edubuntu WebLive surpasses 100 000 sessions
            * Canonical Design Team: Juju: a logo with a story
            * Mark Shuttleworth: Community growth and development
            * Summaries from the Ubuntu Developer Summit -P
            * In The Press
            * In The Blogosphere
            * Ubuntu One for Windows Bringing new users to Linux?
            * Windows 8 plot to lock out Linux
            * Other Articles of Interest
            * Upcoming Meetings and Events
            * Updates and Security for 8.04, 10.04, 10.10, 11.04 and 11.10
            * And much more

          • Flavours and Variants

            • All change in the Linux world.

              With the release of Ubuntu 11.10, we have Canonical’s Unity desktop offered to us. Many Linux users are up in arms, some love the new look, and others have moved away from Ubuntu to pastures new, not happy at all with the direction the desktop is going. On the face of it, Unity on 11.10 is an improvement over 11.04 but for me, indifference and disappointment has relegated the live CD to the pile of ‘Works, but not for me’, of which there are a growing number. Kubuntu 11.04 on the other hand, is very polished, smooth and is working well on my i5 4Gb desktop, with only a few minor worries creeping in since I installed it on the day of release back in October.

              I keep abreast of the new innovations that are to be found with the modern Linux desktop. Gnome 3, KDE 4.7 and now, today, a release candidate of Linux Mint 12 with a radical take on Gnome 3 (Clem and the LM team have chosen this over Unity) and have developed scripts to make the user feel more at ease with the new desktop. The 1Gb .iso file has just this minute finished downloading, so I’ll be burning it and trying it out to get first impressions. At this point, I have only seen a screenshot on the Linux Mint blog, so I am a little apprehensive as to what I will find. Watch this space….

            • Linux Mint 12 RC1 Review
            • LinuxMint 12 Lisa first Look | Screenshots Tour
            • Linux Mint: The new Ubuntu?
            • Linux Mint
  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • HTC’s Anti-Apple Strategy Wins in U.S. Smartphone Market: Tech

          Executive Officer Peter Chou got the call when Sprint Nextel Corp. wanted to develop the first smartphone for a higher-speed wireless network last year.

          Sprint needed the phone fast, with a design that would stand out in the market. No problem, Chou told the executives. HTC’s engineers spent about seven months building the device with Sprint and launched the Evo last June. The debut gave Sprint bragging rights for the first fourth-generation phone in the U.S., and won Taiwanese manufacturer HTC strong support at a major carrier.

        • Android Builders Summit CFP Now Open

          Just a few weeks back from LinuxCon Europe in Prague and we’re already starting to cultivate content for next year. Most notably, I am please to announce that the Call for Participation for the Android Builders Summit is now open. We created ABS last year at the behest of our members who are vendors in the Android Ecosystem who needed a place to collaborate with their peers on systems level engineering and discussion of core issues and opportunities when designing Android devices.

        • Amazon App store for Android updated

          The Amazon App Store for Android version 2.0 has rolled out in preparation for the US launch of the Kindle Fire.

          With the Amazon Kindle Fire rolling out for the US market on 15 November, Amazon knows that its app strategy is a central pillar to supporting its new venture.

        • aNag – Android Nagios app
    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Digitimes Research: Branded tablet PC shipments to grow 60% in 2012

        Global branded tablet PC shipments in the fourth quarter are not expected to see growth creating concerns among market watchers whether the tablet PC market has already reached saturation, but Digitimes Research senior analyst James Wang believes that the zero-growth in the fourth quarter is the joint affect of Japan’s earthquake on March 11 and the global economic downturn, which should not become an obstacle that restrains the tablet PC market’s growth in the future.

Free Software/Open Source

  • A balanced profit distribution is the way to do business, says Acer founder

    Acer founder Stan Shih, at a public meeting with Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt, pointed out that an open source system allows enterprises, retail channels and consumers to all receive profits and it also helps the ecosystem to reach a balance, while ensures players maintain long-term operations, and is the way for enterprises to operate their business.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

      • Chrome 15 update closes holes, updates Flash

        Google has released version 15.0.874.120 of Chrome. The maintenance and security update to the WebKit-based browser upgrades the V8 JavaScript engine to version 3.5.10.23, addresses several vulnerabilities, and includes the recent Flash Player 11.1 release, which also closes critical security holes.

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 8 arrives with improved add-on control

        As expected, the Mozilla Project has officially announced the release of version 8.0 of its open source Firefox web browser. Based on the Gecko 8 engine, Firefox 8 adds Twitter as a new default search option for select locales (more locales will be added in the future) and improves how add-ons are controlled.

      • Mozilla Reinvents Web Video With Popcorn 1.0

        Video on the web has always been a bit disappointing. After all, it’s pretty much just like television, only smaller. Unlike the rest of the web, video is just as much a passive experience in your browser as it is anywhere else.

      • Hands-on: Firefox’s experimental new native Android interface

        Mozilla is working on a major overhaul of the Firefox mobile user interface for Android. The developers are transitioning away from XUL—the cross-platform user interface toolkit used by Firefox on the desktop—in favor of native widgets. This major design change will offer smoother performance, better platform integration, and a look and feel that is a bit more consistent with the rest of the Android environment.

        We looked at the new native Firefox mobile tablet interface when it surfaced in September for Honeycomb devices. Mozilla’s mobile team is currently preparing to deliver a similar native interface for the smartphone flavor of the browser. It shares visual style of the tablet implementation, but is designed to fit well on a phone-sized screen.

      • Mozilla Celebrates The 7th Birthday Of Firefox Web Browser
  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Oracle Solaris goes to 11

      Oracle has updated its Unix-based operating system Solaris, adding some features that would make the OS more suitable for running cloud deployments, as well as integrating it more tightly with other Oracle products, the company announced Wednesday.

      “We looked at some of the big challenges that people were having in deploying cloud infrastructure, either in a private cloud or public cloud,” said Charlie Boyle, senior director of product marketing. “In the release, we engineered out some of the complexity in managing a cloud infrastructure, and made it possible to run any Solaris application in a cloud environment.”

    • Oracle Debuts Solaris 11
  • CMS

    • Everything should be open source, says WordPress founder

      Can relying on open source technology as the backbone for an entire company really be feasible? WordPress.com’s founder Matt Mullenweg certainly seems to think so.

      “I believe morally and philosophically that not just software, but everything should be open source,” asserted Mullenweg, while speaking at the GigaOM RoadMap 2011 summit on Thursday evening.

      It’s a bold statement, but it’s the ethos that Mullenweg admirably stuck to, pointing out that sites like Wikipedia replaced Encyclopedia Britannica, and how far Android has gone for mobile.

    • SoundOff: Best open source CMS updates of 2011
  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Project Releases

  • Licensing

    • AVM cannot prohibit modification of GPL router firmware

      Cybits AG’s Surf-Sitter software is parental control software which allows a parent to set times when surfing is allowed or when a web filter is enabled. The software is also available for installation on routers like the Fritzbox; when installing, the application connects to the router and downloads, modifies and reloads the router’s firmware onto the device. AVM said that this was a violation of its copyright and in January last year, it obtained a preliminary injunction which prohibited Cybits AG from distributing that software or any other which edited the router firmware or used other parts of that firmware unchanged. At the same time, it filed a case against Cybits.

    • Court rejects AVM’s claims opposing third party modifications of GPL software

Leftovers

  • Apple’s iPad not so shiny once you get it home

    Many Brits can’t be bothered to use their fruity fondleslabs once they have them and don’t think they’re worth the money, a new study has found.
    The survey, by money-off coupon site MyVoucherCodes, showed that over a quarter of UK iPad users only used their Apple tablet once a week and one in 10 don’t even bother with it that much.

    Only 42 per cent of the 1,531 users asked said they use their iPad every day.

  • Apple’s iPhone 4S Battery Troubles Now Joined By New Problems

    Apple says it’s still investigating battery drain issues with the iPhone 4S after some users complained that the iOS 5.0.1 update didn’t solve their problems. But now Apple is facing new gripes that the iOS 5.0.1 update is causing more problems with the iPhone 4S including; microphone failures, Wi-Fi signal loss, and cellular network reception issues, according to reports.
    “The recent iOS software update addressed many of the battery issues that some customers experienced on their iOS 5 devices,” Apple said in a statement to All Things Digital. “We continue to investigate a few remaining issues.”

    Apple released iOS 5.0.1 on Thursday, claiming that it would fix iPhone 4S battery drain. The update also added multitouch gestures for the original iPad and fixed a few other issues. While some iPhone users said the update solved their battery problems, others said the battery suckage was just as bad, or worse, than before.

  • Brit tech writer stunned to be the voice of Siri

    While the world and its dog is getting all excited about Apple’s Siri software, Siri itself turns out to be a former British tech journalist called Jon Briggs who was jolly surprised at his new role.
    Jon Briggs quit writing about technology to do voice-over work, and recorded “Daniel” for Scansoft, which subsequently merged with Nuance, the outfit that works with Apple on Siri.

    He said he had no idea that he was the voice of Siri until he saw an advert with his voice on it the telly.
    Briggs told the Daily Telegraph that he did a set of recordings with Scansoft five or six years ago, for text-to-speech services.

    It involved him saying five thousand sentences over three weeks, spoken in a very particular way and only reading flat and even.

  • Security

    • Critical bug in ProFTPD closed
    • Hackers Hijack Millions of Computers in ‘Massive’ Fraud Case

      The U.S. charged seven people with a “massive” computer intrusion scheme that used malicious software to manipulate online advertising, diverted users to rogue servers and infected more than 4 million computers in more than 100 countries.

      One Russian and six Estonians were charged with wire fraud and conspiracy in a 27-count indictment unsealed today by Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara. The cyber-hijacking victims included at least a half million individuals, businesses in the U.S. and government agencies, including the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Bharara said.

  • Finance

    • Zuccotti Park’s Burgeoning Micro-Neighborhoods May Indicate Deeper Divisions

      Protesters at Occupy Wall Street insist that they are a completely leaderless movement with a purely horizontal structure. But where some see simple diversity — a self-proclaimed goal of OWS — others see the creep of an insidious hierarchy, most clearly seen in the emerging micro-neighborhoods in Zuccotti Park.

      At the northeast corner of the park is one of the tidiest regions of the Occupy Wall Street movement: the People’s Library, with more than 3,000 volumes and staffed largely by professional book handlers. Just south of the Library, the General Assembly — the evening meeting where collective decisions are made — is held, close to many of the working group stations that are dominated by college-educated professionals.

    • The Road to Serfdom

      The markets are again in free-fall and, once again, a lazy Mediterranean profligate is to blame. This time, it’s an Italian, rather than a Greek. No, not Silvio Berlusconi, but his fellow countryman, Mario Draghi, the new head of the increasingly spineless European Central Bank.

      At least the Alice in Wonderland quality of the markets has finally dissipated. It was extraordinary to observe the euphoric reaction to the formation of the European Financial Stability Forum a few weeks ago, along with the “voluntary” 50% haircut on Greek debt (which has turned out to be as ‘voluntary’ as a bank teller opening up a vault and surrendering money to someone sticking a gun in his/her face). To anybody with a modicum of understanding of modern money, it was obvious that the CDO like scam created via the EFSF would never end well and that the absence of a substantive role for the European Central Bank would prove to be its undoing.

    • Rove’s Crossroads GPS Attacks Occupy Movement, Elizabeth Warren

      Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS is running an ad in Massachusetts attacking the Occupy Wall Street movement and U.S. Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren with some questionable assertions.

      Warren, a Harvard law professor and longtime critic of financial gambling who oversaw the development of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is running even with incumbent Scott Brown in a high-stakes race for the U.S. Senate. Crossroads GPS is a secretly-funded 501(c)(4) group affiliated with Rove’s American Crossroads. A heavy hitter in the campaign spending arena, the group spent $17 million in the 2010 elections, and is expected to spend $150 million in 2012. The group is led by Stephen Law, former general counsel for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and Crossroads GPS worked closely with the Chamber in 2010 to fight the Wall Street reforms that Warren supported.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Insurers are Recycling a Front Group to Cheat Us Out of Benefits

      The special interests seeking to gut those portions of the health reform law that would be of greatest benefit to consumers clearly believe there is no such thing as historical memory in Washington.

      Why else would they bring one of their old front groups out of the storage locker, with just a single new word added to its name? A front group designed to persuade Americans that what they might have thought was in their best interests really isn’t after all.

      In the late 1990s, health insurers and their most reliable business allies — including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) — set up a front group called the Health Benefits Coalition. Back then, the industry’s target was the Patient’s Bill of Rights, which would have made insurance firms behave in a more consumer-friendly way. Among other things, the bill of rights would have forced insurers to make an external review process available to health plan enrollees who were denied coverage for doctor-ordered treatments. It also would have given enrollees an expanded right to sue their insurers for wrongful denials of coverage.

    • Koch’s Americans for Prosperity Fails in Effort to Smear Critic

      An effort by the Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity (AFP) to brand a frequent critic as a “liar” has been contradicted by a recording of the alleged deceit. AFP has not issued a retraction.

      On November 8, Americans for Prosperity published a blog post on their website titled “Lee Fang Lies: The Real Face of ‘Think Progress.’” Fang is a researcher and blogger for Think Progress and has written many articles about the Koch brothers, including about their business practices and lobbying efforts, and about their role in manipulating the Tea Party.

  • Copyrights

    • Warner Bros: we issued takedowns for files we never saw, didn’t own copyright to

      In a Monday court filing, Warner Brothers admitted that it has issued takedown notices for files without looking at them first. The studio also acknowledged that it issued takedown notices for a number of URLs that its adversary, the locker site Hotfile, says were obviously not Warner Brothers’ content.

      Hotfile has been locked in a legal battle with Hollywood studios since February; the studios accuse the site of facilitating copyright infringement on a massive scale. Hotfile counters that it is immune from liability for the infringements of its users because it complies with the notice-and-takedown procedures established by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. But Hotfile has also tried to turn the tables by arguing that one of the studios, Warner Brothers, has itself violated the DMCA by issuing bogus takedown requests.

11.10.11

Links 11/11/2011: Fedora 16 Reviews, Desura Linux Client

Posted in News Roundup at 7:51 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • LXF stickers and fridge magnets up for grabs

    We’re having a bit of a clear-out here at LXF Towers, and we’ve come across some goodies to give away. We have three sheets of stickers (readers loved these) and six boxes of fridge magnets. If you fancy some of these goodies, simply leave your best Linux joke in the comments below (tasteful, please!) and we’ll choose the best in a week or so. Please also leave your email address in ROT13 format (to avoid spambots) so that we can contact winners for their addresses.

  • Desktop

    • Some interesting statistic about user experience with the applications icons on the desktop

      In the my previous post I asked about launching applications from the desktop by clicking on the icon on the desktop. Also I run 2 public opinion polls on the Russian sites Linux.Org.ru (the most popular site about GNU/Linux in Russia) and unixforum.org (the most popular forum about GNU/Linux in Russia).

    • The Linux Setup – TheFu, Enterprise Architect/Writer

      Your readers have heard the term “The network IS the computer”, so they will understand that most of my daily use is on other machines, not the desktop I happen to be sitting behind.

      However, my main laptop runs Windows7 because some clients don’t know how to deal with Linux. I run a 32-bit Ubuntu Server 10.04 LTS with LXDE loaded inside a VirtualBox VM for 95% of what I do daily. I try every new Ubuntu release, but always find those are too bloated for my needs since 8.04. Even Lubuntu has so many programs that I don’t use, it is easier to just load the server image and add a DE. I’ve been temped to drop back to FVWM more than once.

    • The New Laptop Experiment: The first 15 days
  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Catnip Kernel Panic

      ‘I encountered a kernel panic with the 3.1.0 kernel on a Dell Latitude E6410 while inputting simultaneously from the integrated keyboard with a cat and from the external keyboard myself. I was trying to type my password with the external keyboard (pw dialog already visible), but I noticed that the computer didn’t seem responsive to my typing. Then suddenly the cat shifted his position and there was a kernel panic involving input handling. I’m now using i8042.nokbd kernel parameter as a workaround, something I’ve found useful also earlier.’

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

    • GNOME Desktop

      • GNOME Design Update

        It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these design update posts. There’s plenty going on in GNOME design at the moment though, so I thought it would be a good idea to write about what’s being worked on. Here’s what we’ve been up to recently.

  • Distributions

    • Gentoo Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • CentOS Continuous Release

        The CentOS Continuous Release repository (“CR”) was first introduced for CentOS 5.6, and currently exists for both CentOS 5 and CentOS 6. The CR repo is intended to provide package updates which have been released for the next point release upstream (from RHEL) which has not yet been officially released by CentOS yet due to delays around building, testing, and seeding mirrors for a new point release. For example, this means that once RedHat releases RHEL 5.8, CentOS will include package updates from 5.8 base and updates in CentOS 5.7 CR repo until the time that CentOS is able to complete the release of CentOS 5.8. For admins, this means less time without important security updates and the ability to be on the latest packages released in the latest RHEL point release.

      • Fedora

        • Heading Uptown to See Fedora Linux – A Tale of Science, Secret Agents and Corporate War

          After a night and a day of feeling at home and happy with an “unstable” Debian, last night I decided to get a taste of another distribution. First, I quit Ubuntu, ending up with the rough and tumble Arch Linux, then back home to my old flame Debian. But I’m not yet ready to settle down.

        • Fedora 16 GNOME: New and Stable

          What is my general opinion of Fedora 16 GNOME3? I’d say it is as good as GNOME3 system can be. It is stable, solid and has good reputation. If you like interface of “new wave” desktop environments (GNOME3, Unity), then you should be able to use Fedora without many issues.
          I am not big fan of this “new wave”. I prefer KDE. What does it mean for you? That review of Fedora 16 KDE is not far away! Stay tuned!

        • Welcome Fedora 16!

          Today I installed the shiny new Fedora release, and said goodbye to Fedora 14, which was in my humble opinion the best Linux distribution I have ever used (oh, I’ve been in F16 for just a couple of hours, and the artwork based on Jules Verne theme it’s a good start: really awesome).

          After installing the usual stuff (RPM Fusion it’s very important in this laptop, because I need their non-free packages so my Broadcom wireless works!), the only bit I’ve found confusing is the spell-check support. I had to install hunspell-es and hunspell-en packages (enchant is required too, but it was already installed) to have spell-checking in all the input boxes. That wasn’t obvious and Evolution’s documentation put me in the right path.

        • Plans to remove Kororaa 14 from mirrors
        • Fedora Scholarship Recognizes Students for Their Contributions to Open Source Software
        • My Fedora 16 fiasco

          I was very much looking forward to testing Fedora 16, to finding out about its latest new features and enhancements, so I downloaded the ISO images for both GNOME 3.2 and KDE 4.7 and on I went to test. I was so confident that both would be so great that I decided to wipe out Mandriva from one of my machines to make room for Verne. Unfortunately, my experience was short lived and a bit of a disaster. To test and install Verne, I decided to use my HP 2730p and 2740p tablets. Specifically, I wanted to install both on the latter, being a model that´s usually demanding and difficult in terms of hardware recognition. That would also allow me to compare how KDE and GNOME squeeze the latest from Fedora camp following an accurate approach. My plan was also to install the KDE flavor on the former, given that I like Fedora better than Mandriva myself. Unfortunately, I was not able to get anything working. On the 2740p, both the GNOME and KDE Live desktops would load perfectly and smoothly (albeit without support for the on board Broadcom Wireless card, a disappointment,

    • Debian Family

Free Software/Open Source

  • The Apache Software Foundation Announces Apache Tika(tm) v1.0

    Standards-based, Content and Metadata Detection and Analysis Toolkit Powers Large-scale, Multi-lingual, Multi-format Repositories at Adobe, the Internet Archive, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and more.

  • Events

    • LinuxDay 2011 Italy celebrates 20 years of Linux

      Every October in Italy we hold an event dedicated to GNU/Linux and open source software development called LinuxDay 2011 Italy. The event is organized by the Italian Linux Society (ILS) and local Linux User Groups (LUG’s). LUG’s hold conferences in many cities spreading the philosophy of “Freedom, as in free speech,” with the goal of popularizing the use and development of open source software.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • 7 Years of Firefox

        We build Firefox to build freedom and excellence into the web. We build Firefox to make sure that each person can be sovereign over the technology he or she uses to interact with the web. We build Firefox to combine user sovereignty and freedom with a great product experience that enriches web life.

      • Celebrating 7 years of Firefox with the newest (and cutest) Mozillians!

        Today, we are excited to join together as a global community to celebrate the 7th birthday of Firefox. As the only independent browser with a mission to make the Web better, we are proud of how the last seven years of Firefox have pushed the Web forward:

      • What’s coming in Firefox 9, 10 or 11? Little to get excited about

        The Firefox development merry-go-round has moved on again, withFirefox 9 Beta and Firefox 10 Aurora builds being joined by two separate versions of Firefox 11: Firefox 11 Nightly and Firefox 11 UX, the most intriguing build of all.

        Those looking for major new features or a revamped interface will be disappointed, as the emphasis in Beta and Aurora builds is very much one of performance improvements and stability fixes. With this in mind, which version should you install? Read on for our updated guide to what’s happening with each version of Firefox.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Education

    • Open-source Proponents Blast Proprietary Software in Dutch Schools

      Marja Bijsterveldt, the Netherlands’ secretary of education, said that she was unwilling to force open standards on educational institutions, sparking an outcry from open-source advocates who say that Dutch students using free software or devices without Silverlight-support will find themselves locked out of schools’ online systems.

      The open standards policy was approved by the Dutch Parliament in 2007, but has not been fully implemented. Now, free software advocates are starting a new battle to make the use of open standards mandatory for all publicly funded institutions.

      Students who complain about being locked out of their school’s system are being advised to buy the proprietary Microsoft Windows OS, said For Free Software advocate Jan Stedehouder. “This behavior is not only unacceptable but also illegal. Our campaign aims at passing new legislation to ensure the mandatory use of open standards in education, to make sure that students have access to the free technology they deserve.”

  • Licensing

    • Court rejects AVM´s claims opposing third party modifications of GPL software

      On November 8th the Regional Court of Berlin [Landgericht Berlin] issued its decision in the previously reported case AVM Computersysteme Vertriebs GmbH (AVM) v. Cybits AG (Cybits). In this case, AVM was essentially trying to stop Cybits from modifying GNU GPL licensed Free Software inside of their AVM Fritz!Box products. Yesterday, the court dismissed this principal claim. Thus, it also confirmed that users of embedded devices with pre-installed Free Software have the legal freedom to make, install, run and distribute modifications to this Free Software. The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) and gpl-violations.org, both welcome this decision.

  • Programming

    • What the Perl 5 Compiler Modules Could Have Been

      Once in a while, someone asks “How can I compile my Perl 5 program to a binary?” Once in a while, someone answers “Use B::CC, at which point many someones shudder and reply “No, please never suggest such a thing, you horrible person.”

      Set aside that thought for a second.

Leftovers

  • Is Google losing it?

    Some of those blunders suggest a worrying loss of control in core competencies like engineering. For example, the Gmail app for the iPhone has been widely derided. Its redesigns of Google Reader have prompted a petition asking for the original design to be brought back. And judging by my own experiences with the hideously gappy Gmail re-design, I can see people making a similar call there.

Links 10/11/2011: Ask Fedora, Thunderbird 8

Posted in News Roundup at 6:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 8 released with integrated Twitter search, other improvements
      • Boot to Gecko open web-based mobile OS being tested by Mozilla

        With Firefox only available for Android and Maemo, Mozilla hasn’t made many inroads on the mobile front, but that doesn’t mean it’s sitting still. The open source organization has been working on a project called Boot to Gecko, or B2G, with the goal of building a standalone OS allowing web developers to build apps that are equal “in every way” to native apps built for iOS, Android, or Windows Phone. To that end, B2G is creating new web APIs that safely expose capabilities like the phone, camera, Bluetooth, and SMS to web pages and applications. The goal is to boot the OS on an Android-compatible device, as well as port or build new apps.

      • Mozilla Firefox Adds Twitter Search and New Features that Make Web Browsing Easier
      • Firefox 8 arrives today to leave unwanted add-ons out

        Mozilla is releasing a major update for Firefox (Firefox 8) today, so let’s give a look at what we are getting in this release cycle.

        Some releases ago, Firefox introduced a feature so that when you are restoring a previous Firefox session, the current tab is loaded first while the others are loaded afterwards in the background or as soon as you switch to another. If this is not the behavior you want, there is now an option in the Options (Preferences) window, to load all tabs at once as before.

      • Thunderbird 8 lands with Lightning calendar

        Thunderbird 8, made available for download on Tuesday, is built using the Gecko 8 browser engine used in Firefox 8, also released the same day. Notably, the new version of the email software is accompanied by Lightning 1.0. The add-on, which has been under development at Mozilla for years, gives Thunderbird a calendar module.

      • Mozilla’s Brendan Eich on the Birth of Firefox

        A couple of weeks ago I posted the first part of an interview with Brendan Eich, who is Mozilla’s CTO. That covered the early years of browsers at Netscape, and the origin of Mozilla. Somewhat belatedly, here’s the second part of that interview, which picks up the story at the beginning of this millennium, and reveals the complex sequence of events that led to the creation of Mozilla Firefox.

        One of the key people in this tale is Dave Hyatt, the main architect of tabbed browsing at Mozilla, and now at Apple. Eich explains: “he was getting fed up with Netscape management.” Perhaps as a result of that frustration, he was also writing new browsers, one of which became the popular Mac OS X browser Camino.

        “Dave quit Netscape to go to Apple,” Eich recalls. “This was a real feather in Apple’s cap – Hyatt knew all about Web compatibility – the team at Apple was very talented, but they didn’t know about Web compatibility. He wasn’t working on Mozilla at that point, except in his spare time. Inside Apple he was working on a fork of KHTML which led to the whole Webkit story.”

      • Firefox 3.6 Users to Get Nudged to Upgrade to 8 on Nov 17

        Firefox 8 has been officially released today as an upgrade from Firefox 7.0.1.

      • Firefox Turns 7, Releases a Polished Firefox 8 [REVIEW]

        It’s a big week for Mozilla, as Firefox celebrates its seventh birthday and Firefox 8 hits the interwebs.

        In recent years, Firefox has lost ground to browsers such as Google Chrome. Yet Firefox remains a significant and important part of the browsing landscape.

      • Download Official Firefox 8 and Thunderbird 8 for Linux
  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Openness/Sharing

    • The Darknet Project: netroots activists dream of global mesh network

      A group of Internet activists gathered last week in an Internet Relay Chat (IRC) channel to begin planning an ambitious project—they hope to overcome electronic surveillance and censorship by creating a whole new Internet. The group, which coordinates its efforts through the Reddit social networking site, calls its endeavor The Darknet Project (TDP).

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Flash is dead. Long live HTML5.

      Adobe’s love affair with its Flash format has come to an end. Oh sure, Adobe said they were just killing development on mobile browser Flash in favor of HTML5, but seriously, do you think, that they’ll keep working on Flash on the desktop for much longer? If you do, I have a nice, lightly-used bridge in Brooklyn I’d like to sell you. No, the end of Flash is in sight and HTML5 is now the one true future for Internet video.

      In Adobe’s official announcement, Danny Winokur, Adobe’s VP and general manager of interactive development, wrote, “HTML5 is now universally supported on major mobile devices, in some cases exclusively. This makes HTML5 the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms. We are excited about this, and will continue our work with key players in the HTML community, including Google, Apple, Microsoft and RIM, to drive HTML5 innovation they can use to advance their mobile browsers.”

    • It’s Official. Flash is Terminally Ill
    • Exclusive: Adobe ceases development on mobile browser Flash, refocuses efforts on HTML5 (UPDATED)

Leftovers

  • Finance

    • Goldman Updates Mortgage Impact

      Goldman Sachs Group Inc. could face as much as $2.6 billion in legal losses, largely on mortgage-related lawsuits and probes, the securities firm said in a regulatory filing Wednesday.

      New York-based Goldman also reported trading losses on 21 days in the third quarter, a period in which Goldman posted just its second quarterly loss in a dozen years as a public company. That was its highest number since the bank’s fiscal fourth quarter in 2008, which saw the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and Goldman’s previous quarterly loss.

  • Censorship

  • Civil Rights

    • What’s the justification for warrantless access to customer data in “lawful access”

      The Public Safety Minister and various police folks are arguing that telecom operators should have to hand over any and all of the following information without a warrant and without an underlying criminal investigation: name, address, telephone number and electronic mail address, Internet protocol address, mobile identification number, electronic serial number, local service provider identifier, international mobile equipment identity number, international mobile subscriber identity number and subscriber identity module card number that are associated with the subscriber’s service and equipment.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Unlicensed Wireless vs. Licensed Spectrum: Evidence from Market Adoption
    • Net Neutrality Enforcement Put to the Test

      The enforcement of Canada’s net neutrality rules, which govern how Internet providers manage their networks, was in the spotlight earlier this year when documents obtained under the Access to Information Act revealed virtually all major Canadian ISPs have been the target of complaints, but there have been few, if any, consequences arising from the complaints process.

      The documents painted a discouraging picture, with multiple complaints against Rogers Communications due to the throttling of online games going seemingly nowhere, while a complaint against satellite Internet provider Xplorenet languished for months until the Commission threatened to launch a public proceeding.

  • ACTA

    • FFII objects to secret INTA committee meeting on ACTA

      According to the agenda, the Committee on International Trade will discuss ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) behind closed doors on 23 November. [1] We object to this discussion being held behind closed doors. Since the publication of the ACTA text, discussions have to take place in public.

      ACTA’s predecessor, the TRIPS agreement, killed millions of people. 500 Million Europeans, and billions abroad, are entitled to full transparency.

11.09.11

Links 9/11/2011: Firefox 8 Launches, Linux 3.2 RC 1

Posted in News Roundup at 1:39 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Server

    • Linux, Open Source Still ‘Money’ in Financial Services

      Linux and open source software are spreading out — cloud computing, mobile computing, supercomputing — and an increasing number of use cases large and small. One area where Linux and open source have history and continue to remain strong is banking and financial services, highlighted by the latest open source messaging technology in the space: the new OpenMAMA middleware messaging project and the AMQP messaging standard, recently released in version 1.0.

      This strength of open source software, similar to what we’ve seen in cloud computing, bodes well for Linux and open source in a number of other key verticals, as well.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 3.2 rc1
    • Linux 3.2-rc1

      So it’s been two weeks since 3.1, and you know how it works by now.

      I have to say, this wasn’t my favorite merge window ever. I really
      wanted to take only things that had been in -next, but verifying it
      was fairly painful, since a lot of the trees had been rebased, and the
      ones that hadn’t been rebased often had some extra patches that still
      showed up when I did my “git log linux-next..FETCH_HEAD” thing.

      On the whole, most of it was all good, and I didn’t really end up
      complaining to people. I’m pretty sure that there were trees I
      shouldn’t have let through, but the majority really had been in -next.

    • Exclusive Documentary, Interview Of Linus Torvalds Released

      We met Linus Torvalds at LinuxCon Europe 2011 and did a long interview. We covered sevaral topics including his stand on Secure Boot, Patents and Copyrights. What he thinks of Apple without Steve Jobs and how influencial Steve Jobs was in Apple. He also talks about his differences with FSF and GNU GPL v3. We also talked about Android and the contribution of Amazon and Google. The lighter topics included what is his primary language, what his kids use at home — Windows or Linux.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • more plasma workspaces 4.8 news

        Compositing window management in 4.8 can be built with support for OpenGL ES. This means hardware acceleration using a more modern revision of OpenGL and one that is supported on mobile devices.

        During development of this feature, Martin Gräßlin did a lot of clean up to the existing code bringing performance enhancements to how effects are handled and windows are painted. The blur implementation also received a significant improvement to its performance thanks to improved caching written by Philipp Knechtges; this provides quite noticeable results on many systems. In all, many fewer cycles are spent rendering and displaying the beauty that is the Plasma Desktop.

  • Distributions

    • Out of Ubuntu’s Bed to Hairy Arch Linux in a Dark Alley

      My first thought was to give Arch Linux a whirl. The amount of noise and adulation people generate about it borders on the cultish. They consider themselves “advanced”, which is nice. They seem to consider themselves advanced because it takes a certain amount of tinkering to successfully run and maintain Arch. Interestingly, many Arch users also claim Arch is easy. C’est la vie, and I’ve learned it almost always takes getting naked and swimming for yourself before you make any judgments.

    • New Releases

      • 5 November 2011: GParted Live Manual 1.0
      • Chakra 2011.11
      • Clonezilla 1.2.11-18
      • SystemRescueCd 2.4.0
      • CDlinux 0.9.7 released
      • Elastix 2.2

        Now available Elastix 2.2 and the elastixWorld 2011 attendees were the first to witness the improvements in this new Elastix stable version. In this version you will enjoy a new and improved interface and the upgrading of Asterisk among other additions such as:

      • Announcements concerning Scientific Linux

        With a little delay I can announce the release of Scientific Linux 5.7 LiveCD/DVD.

        Scientific Linux Live CD/DVD 5.7 can now be downloaded for 32 and 64 bit:

        ftp://ftp.scientificlinux.org/linux/scientific/livecd/57/i386
        ftp://ftp.scientificlinux.org/linux/scientific/livecd/57/x86_64

        Public mirrors of Scientific Linux 5.7 LiveCD/DVD can be found here

        https://www.scientificlinux.org/download/mirrors

      • Major release: IPFire 2.11

        It’s already been four years since IPFire 2 was released for the first time. There has been huge progress until today, the release of version 2.11.

        As in every single IPFire release we have made so far, there have been updates that brought new features and despite of that kept the systems always up to date.

      • VortexBox 2.0 released

        With the recent release of Fedora 16 it’s time to release a new version of VortexBox based on it. VortexBox 2.0 is based on Fedora 16 and also includes the new Logitech Media Server 7.7.0. We have added some other fixes and updates as well including new versions of MPD and our built in DLNA server.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat Announces Cloud Computing Alliance with SAIC

        Red Hat, Inc. (NYSE: RHT), the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, today announced a collaboration with Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) (NYSE: SAI), to demonstrate and deliver innovative solutions that maximize the use of open source cloud computing technologies.

      • Fedora

        • F17 heads up: gnome-shell for everyone!
        • Exploring what’s new in Fedora 16

          The new Fedora has an updated set of components as well as improvements in the areas of virtualisation and cloud computing. Fedora now uses different technologies to partition hard disks and when booting.

        • Fedora 16 Released! Pays Tribute To Dennis Ritchie

          Dedicated To Dennis Ritchie

          In its release note, Fedora team has dedicated this version to Dennis Ritchie — the co-inventor of Unix and the C language. He also co-authored The C Programming Language, a book that taught many programmers just at the time personal computing was exploding. Without Ritchie computing would be nothing like it is today.

    • Debian Family

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Embedded Linux Conference Europe 2011 videos

      One week after the end of the Embedded Linux Conference Europe 2011, we are pleased to release the videos of all talks that took place during this event. We would like to thank the Linux Foundation for allowing us to record those talks and to share freely the resulting videos on-line, and also thank the Clarion Congress Hotel technical staff for helping us with technical details related to video recording.

    • Phones

      • Android

        • T-Mobile offers seven-inch Samsung tablet for $250 ‘down payment’
        • Google offers Android firms a helping hand

          That message came from Google’s chairman Eric Schmidt, who is taking a bit of a tour and making a lot of comments along the way.
          Earlier while roaming South Korea, Schmidt said that Google’s upcoming acquisition of Motorola would not make it a favourite amongst its Android partners, and he criticised Microsoft’s litigation against phone makers that are using Android. Today in Taipei, he has gone further.
          “We tell our partners, including the ones here in Taiwan, we will support them. For example we have been supporting HTC in its dispute with Apple because we think that the Apple thing is not correct,” Schmidt told reporters during his first visit to Taipei, according to Reuters.

        • $19/month Android plan is ‘unlimited’ thanks to Wi-Fi

          Republic Wireless announced a contract-free cellular plan that offers unlimited text, data, and voice for $19/month. The service requires a customized LG Optimus Android 2.3 phone ($199 with one free month of service) that switches automatically to Wi-Fi connectivity whenever it’s available, according to the company.

        • More live blogging from AnDevCon
    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime debuts

        Android 3.2 tablet introduced alongside Tegra 3

      • Seven-inch, Android 2.3 tablet is just $149

        Idolian.com announced a seven-inch Android 2.3 tablet for a temporarily discounted price of $149. The MiniTurbo T8 is equipped with a seven-inch, 800 x 480 capacitive display, a 1.2GHz Telechips processor, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of storage, an HDMI port, and Android Market access, says the company.

      • Review: Samsung Series 5 ChromeBook

        Samsung Series 5 Chromebook is a new notebook powered by Google’s Chrome OS, a Linux-based Operating System geared towards mobility and cloud applications. The Series 5 Chromebook comes in a Slick Arctic White or Titan Silver, and offers a 3G or Wifi Model. The design of the Series 5 is smooth and rounded, with a thin form-factor.

Free Software/Open Source

  • How do you solve a problem like Microsoft?

    That said, it is my belief some within Microsoft are embracing open source in a genuine way–but only as far as they can influence the projects in question to their benefit.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

    • CESG asserts security of open source software

      It is wrong to believe that open source software is implicitly insecure, according to the government’s main official on the subject.

      Qamar Yunus, assistant director in the Cabinet Office ICT policy team, made the assertion in outlining the guidance the organisation has produced on the subject at the EHI Live event in Birmingham.

      “There was a myth being circulated around the SIs, saying you can’t use open source software in government as it’s not secure,” Yunus told the conference, referring to the systems integrators that account for large amounts of government ICT spending.

      To counter this, the Cabinet Office asked CESG, the National Technical Authority for Information Assurance, to produce guidance on the subject. The result is already available to users of the Government Secure intranet, and will be published on the Cabinet Office website in the next couple of weeks.

      “That document clearly states there is no difference between open source and proprietary software. That’s one myth busted,” Yunus said.

      He told the audience that the government is not in favour of open source in all cases, but wants to see a “level playing field” with proprietary software based on total cost of ownership over its lifetime. “I do not believe it is always the best value for money,” he said, but added that he wants government ICT buyers – including systems integrators planning technology refreshes – always to consider open source as an option. This should involve software procurements stating an outcome rather than a brand.

      Yunus said that he has carried out extensive research with both departments and integrators. “There was a realisation that neither really understood open source,” he said. As a result, the Cabinet Office has established a Government Open Solutions online forum, a model to assess the total cost of ownership of the two types of software, a catalogue of case studies and an asset register of government ICT that will indicate whether a project uses open source.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Wikimedia UK gets charitable status

      Wikimedia UK – the chapter of the Wikimedia Foundation that covers the United Kingdom – has been registered as a charity by the Charity Commission. Charity law specialists Stone King LLP, who advised Wikimedia UK on the application, described this decision as “a milestone in the development of charity law in England and Wales” as it marks “a significant step toward the updating of charity law to reflect developments in modern communications and the evolution of user-generated content”.

  • Programming

    • Tough tests flunk good programmer job candidates
    • Eclipse Xtends Java

      The Eclipse Foundation has quietly launched a new language, Xtend, which it says is designed to address shortcomings of Java without replacing it.

      The aim of Xtend is to create more readable code, to add features that Java needs but doesn’t have, and to offer “a convenient alternative in situations where Java doesn’t shine”.

    • Why You Should Pay Attention to Node.Js
    • Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin coming April 2012
    • New JVM Specially Designed for Linux

      ava runtime maker Azul Systems released a new Java Virtual Machine (JVM) today specifically architected and optimized for the Linux operating system and x86-based servers. The company is billing Zing 5.0, now available, as the most scalable JVM for enterprise Java workloads.

      “Java is the most popular language in the enterprise,” said Azul co-founder and CEO Scott Sellers, “and Linux is the most popular operating system. Instead of trying to create a JVM that does all things for all operating environments, as Oracle (and previously, Sun) has done, we decided to get laser focused on developing the best JVM for Linux.”

Leftovers

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • CMD’s Quick Guide to the Mark Block “Blocktopus”

      The Center for Media and Democracy filed a letter this week requesting that the Internal Revenue Service investigate Prosperity USA, a charity founded by Herman Cain’s Chief of Staff Mark Block, for potentially violating the Internal Revenue Code by fronting tens of thousands of dollars worth of Mr. Cain’s campaign travel expenses. But Prosperity USA is only one node in a network of charities and nonprofit organizations associated with Mr. Block, the former head of the Wisconsin arm of the Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity.

    • How the Koch-Funded ALEC Works to Deny Voting Rights; Brave New Film Highlights Voter Suppression

      A new film from the Brave New Foundation outlines the role of the Koch-funded American Legislative Exchange Council in new voter suppression tactics; the Center for Media and Democracy is one of the voices featured in the film.

      Through the corporate-funded American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), global corporations and state politicians vote behind closed doors to try to rewrite state and federal laws that govern your rights. The so-called “model bills” of this corporate bill mill–which has been funded by Koch profits and other corporations–reach into almost every area of American life, including the right to vote.

  • Copyrights

    • Ellen Seidler – And Then Came Lola (2009)

      Unfortunately Osgoode Hall is heavily involved on the Corporate side of copyright. This is not surprising, most copyright lawyers are employed by large companies like Warner Music Canada. After the Federal Copyright Consultation a lawyer from Stikeman Elliot wrote an article at IPOsgoode complaining about the consultation. Some of you may remember my satirical answer to him.

Links 9/11/2011: Fedora 16, Linux Mint Dethrones Ubuntu

Posted in News Roundup at 5:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Africa: Promising Land

    The big obstacle to IT in Africa is that networks and electrical power are concentrated in cities and large numbers of people live in rural areas with no network and no power. Solar power, ARMed smart thingies and wireless meshes seem to meet the requirements. Solar power may be very important in the locations off the grid. Schools need good GNU/Linux terminal servers and thin clients. Africa needs Internet access, wikis and the like so that Africa can unleash its talent to develop and support IT systems. Fortunately, there’s no time like the present to bridge the digital divide. IT has never been more easy and quick to implement thanks to ARMed devices and GNU/Linux and Android/Linux.

  • TLWIR 24: HP’s Redstone Servers, Open Source Textbooks, Netflix on GNU/Linux and More
  • Desktop

    • Where desktop sanity prevails

      While the knock-down drag-out debate over the great leap in desktop environment “developments” has raged over the last several months, Clement Lefebvre and the team over at Linux Mint have been taking a more sane and sound approach — mostly under the radar — to the whole desktop interface hubbub.

  • Server

    • Is Rackspace Ready to Support Private Clouds?

      This post is part of our ReadWriteCloud channel, which is dedicated to covering virtualization and cloud computing. The channel is sponsored by Intel and VMware. Read the case study about how Intel Xeon processors and VMware deliver unprecedented reliability in the face of RAM errors.

    • When There’s a Choice to be Made, Choose a Winner

      * Web servers – 65% of the million busiest sites (out of 525 million active web sites) use Apache on GNU/Linux
      * Android/Linux helps Samsung replace Apple as the most popular seller of smart phones
      * GNU/Linux runs an awful lot of embedded smart devices
      * 91% of the top 500 supercomputers run GNU/Linux

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • GNOME vs. KDE vs. Unity: Performing Seven Basic Tasks

      When users talk about the latest generations of Linux desktops, almost always they report general impressions. They say that GNOME 3 seems needlessly complex, or that Unity seems too basic, but they’re vague on the specifics. In the past, I’ve been guilty of dealing with impressions myself.

      But what, I wonder, is the real story? In the hopes of providing some substance, I’ve to compare GNOME 2 and 3, KDE, and Ubuntu’s Unity, using seven basic tasks that anyone using a desktop is likely to do. The comparison is not just a matter of mouse-clicks — although that metric is sometimes revealing — but, in some cases, a matter of design as well.

    • What’s The Difference Between Linux Desktop Environments? [Technology Explained]

      f you’ve been introduced to the world of Linux, it probably didn’t take too long to notice that it doesn’t have a single “face”. Linux can sport all kinds of desktop environments, or none at all. That alone is one of the great benefits of Linux among many more.

      But while that’s impressive, it leaves a very important question for you to decide: What desktop environment should you choose? In this article, we’re going to break down what makes up each desktop environment so you will know what’s best for you and your system.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Trinity Project keeping 3.5 alive

        For people who prefer the KDE 3.5-style desktop, a new version of the Trinity Desktop Environment (TDE) has been released. Trinity is a continuation of the KDE 3.5 Desktop Environment with ongoing updates and new features. Trinity Desktop Environment 3.5.13 source code is available and the project also provides packages for Debian, Ubuntu and Fedora. Read on for an overview of what is new in Trinity 3.5.13!

      • Takeoff with the K Desktop Environment’s best menu style

        The K Desktop Environment (KDE) has more menu styles than any other desktop environment available. There is the Classical type, the Kickoff style (which most users dislike), Lancelot (better than Kickoff, but with a few shortcomings), the ROSA Launcher (for Mandriva Desktop 2011), and the Takeoff Launcher.

        I have already written about the Lancelot menu and the ROSA Launcher. In this article, you will get to see screenshots of Takeoff Launcher. Now that I have used all five menu styles, I can say with confidence that the Takeoff Launcher is best of breed. I think it is what Mandriva developers had in mind when they started working on ROSA Launcher.

  • Distributions

    • ArchBang Brings Arch Linux’s Greatest Features To Your PC Without The Stress

      If you’re in love with Arch Linux but are tired of the painstaking installation process, ArchBang is the perfect distribution for you. It has everything you love about Arch, but installs in just a few minutes with everything you need.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • November 2011 Issue of The PCLinuxOS Magazine

        The PCLinuxOS Magazine staff is pleased to announce the release of the November 2011 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

      • Get Back to Your Roots, Ubuntu Users

        When you have installed Debian GNU/Linux to your hard drive or SSD drive, simply use apt-get to add the rest. You can use the list of packages I obtained with dpkg –get-selections or make up your own. For mine, use cat package.list_.mp3|dpkg –set-selections. (Note that this is a text file, not an .mp3 file. WP objected to text/something.) Also, note that I installed only the video driver for Cirrus which was used in my virtual machine. You could change “xserver-xorg-video-cirrus” to what you need (lspci can show that) or you could install them all by changing to “xserver-xorg-video-all”. apt-cache search xserver-xorg-video will show you what’s available. My list is 833 packages some of which are already installed in the basic system. Still, it’s 4.1gB, a lot of good stuff. The software not on the CD or USB drive will be downloaded from the web as usual so you should have a local repository or a fast Internet connection.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu 11.10 is here

            Ubuntu 11.10, code named Oneiric Ocelot, is now available. It has loads of new functions, which puts other operating systems to shame! Here are a few cool features of this new release.

          • Ubuntu 12.04 to outgrow CD-ROMs

            The Ubuntu Developer Summit (UDS) is where decisions on what features will and will not make it into the next release of Ubuntu, in this case, version 12.04, code-named “Precise Pangolin”. Although many things were discussed, some issues are left open for further research.

          • System 76 – Ubuntu Linux desktops made to order

            For a lot of us, the process is pretty straightforward — take a Microsoft Windows-powered system, do some research, download a Linux distribution and install it. If all goes well, you’ll have a new OS that is configured well and ready to roll. There are times, of course, when all does not go smoothly, leaving the operator to figure out how to configure hardware, why graphical glitches are present, etc. Bear in mind that communities spring up around Linux distros and those are full of people willing to help folks struggling with various problems. Those groups are a wealth of information and anyone dealing with Linux should get acquainted with a forum or two.

          • 10 things to do after installing Ubuntu 11.10
          • The final word on Ubuntu and Unity
          • 10 things to do after installing Ubuntu 11.10

            AFTER tweaking my new Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot) desktop system, I’ve finally got it to a point where it is almost perfect. I’m a little obsessive, which explains why I’ve been at this for a week (and I’m still going), but I do like putting things where I expect them, and the newest release of Ubuntu moved things around quite a bit.

            Ramesh Jha on the SUDOBits blog offered some good advice on 10 things to do after installing Ubuntu 11.10. This is my take on the same topic. Unless otherwise stated, most of the extra software can be installed using Ubuntu Software Center.

          • Ubuntu republic riven by damaging civil wars

            There’s a popular misconception about open source: that it’s democratic, that all users have a vote over its direction and development or even the running of the community around it.

            The users of Ubuntu, arguably the world’s most popular Linux distro these days, are currently discovering that this is not how it works. The result is making a lot of people very angry, but it might result in some interesting new developments for Linux – as well as maybe pointing the way towards the UIs of the next generation of PC.

          • Mark Shuttleworth Interview for Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

            It appears that Mark Shuttleworth, father of the Ubuntu project, gave an interview to Amber Graner, an Ubuntu contributor involved in the community since February 2009.

            In the interview, Mark Shuttleworth talks about the Ubuntu 12.04 LTS codename and how he came up with the idea for Precise Pangolin.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Hooray for Linux Mint 12

              Regular readers already know I’m not really happy with the direction Gnome and Ubuntu have taken with Gnome 3 (Gnome Shell) and Unity respectively. I think both of these are mobile interfaces poorly scaled to the desktop. I understand that mobile is the future, and that’s fine, but it’s really premature to be pushing half-baked interfaces clearly intended for the tablets and phones of the future onto the desktops of today. I still have work to do and I would like to be able to keep doing it without the interface getting in the way. And I’m not alone. Even Linus Torvalds feels the same way, and when the Big Guy of Linux himself calls your new interface “an unholy mess,” something’s wrong. Torvalds called for someone to fork Gnome 2, and once that happened, I knew sooner or later someone might actually do it.

            • A cautious cheer for Pinguy 11.10 Alpha

              I don’t like reviewing alpha versions of distros. I try to pretend they don’t exist. They frustrate me. They’re not finished, and I tend to get hung up on the problems. I blame them for not being ready, when of course that’s the point of an alpha release. The issue is not with the alpha, it’s with me for irrationally expecting it to be smooth and polished. So I’ve pretty much sworn off even downloading alpha versions – and beta versions too, mostly. I try to avoid everything earlier than the release candidate.

            • Linux Mint Shakes Ubuntu, Replaces As The Top Distro

              Yesterday we published about Linux Mint’s secret project for Gnome users and Clem’s claims that soon they will overtake Ubuntu. Seems like he spoke too late. Today Linux Mint has broken the 6 year old record and replaced Ubuntu as the most popular Linux-based distribution on Distro Watch. Linux Mint sits on top with 2199 and Ubuntu slides to the second spot with 2011 rating.

            • Bodhi Linux ARM Repository Online

              Five months ago I did a post announcing that we are working to bring Bodhi to ARM devices. I’ve been rather quiet about this part of our project since then. We are still finalizing the direction this part of our project is headed in, but for now we have landed on the choice of Debian Stable as our core. Our repository is currently online and you can easily install our Enlightenment packages on top of your Debian Stable ARM install by following these steps:

            • How to install Bodhi Linux [snapshots toor]
            • Linux Mint moves to Gnome 3, keeps Gnome 2 MATEy

              The forthcoming release of Linux Mint will see it shift to the Gnome 3 desktop for the first time, but it will continue to support Gnome 2 users with a separate root, and has a shell to ease the transition between the platforms.

              The Linux Mint team does see Gnome 3 as the way forward, it explained in a blog post, but recognizes it’s a big shift to make. Gnome 3 has received heavy criticism, not least from Uncle Linus, mainly because it changes the traditional way of doing things. In particular, Linux Mint members cite poor multitasking and a shift from an application-centric to a task-centric model.

            • Linux Mint Pulls Ahead of Ubuntu

              Distrowatch.com displays a popularity list of all Linux distributions by measuring the number of hits per page on their site. This ranking system is considered to be one of the most reliable around. Even if it is only a measurement of one website’s traffic. Lately Linux Mint has been making a run at first place.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Google’s Eric Schmidt to visit Taiwan to promote Android

          Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt is set to visit Taiwan on November 9 to have a conference with Taiwan-based PC vendors and promote its Android operating system, according to sources from PC players.

        • Motorola ‘doesn’t even have Ice Cream Sandwich source’

          It will be four to six months before Android 4.0 (“Ice Cream Sandwich”) is widely available on handsets, a Motorola Mobility executive has warned. Motorola does not even have the operating system’s source code yet, Ruth Hennigar, the company’s vice president of software product management, reportedly added.

        • HTC promises more tablets, Ice Cream Sandwich upgrades

          HTC announced that at least seven of its smartphones will receive upgrades to Android 4.0 (“Ice Cream Sandwich”). They’re the internationally available Evo 3D Sensation, Sensation XL, and Sensation XE, as well as the U.S.-only Rezound, Design 4G, and Amaze 4G, according to the company — whose CEO also told Reuters it will release one or more additional tablets next year.

        • HTC leaks Edge smartphone with quad-core chip

          The HTC Edge is set for a launch in the first half of next year and will have an Nvidia Tegra 3 Kal-el quad-core processor, according to Pocketnow. The handset looks similar to the Titan but will run Android instead of Windows Phone 7.5 Mango.

        • Motorola Razr goes on sale today

          The iconic mobile phone brand has come back to life today as the latest incarnation of the Motorola Razr. Consumers can get their hands on the super-thin smartphone for £454 SIM-free after a delay of just over a week.

        • Google will continue to offer Android for free

          SMARTPHONE SOFTWARE DEVELOPER Google will continue to offer its Android operating system for free, according to the firm’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt.

          Schmidt said at a press conference today, “We will run (Motorola) sufficiently independently so it will not violate the openness of Android.”

          According to the Wall Street Journal, during his tour of South Korea, Schmidt said that Google’s upcoming acquisition of Motorola will not have an impact on its other Android partners.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Fight! Fight! and M$ is not Even Invited

        Barnes and Noble’s Nook eReaders and Amazon’s Kindles are scrapping in the schoolyard and the bully, M$, is not involved.

      • HTC confirms Ice Cream Sandwich tablet for 2012

        HTC has confirmed it plans to take another stab at the tablet market in 2012 after officially announcing a new fondleslab with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich early next year.

      • HTC to release first Ice Cream Sandwich updates ‘early 2012′

        HTC will be bringing Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich to four of its handsets early next year in what it described today as “the first wave of HTC phones that will receive upgrades”.

      • Rough and tough Honeycomb tablet offers extra security

        Panasonic unveiled a rugged, 10.1-inch Android 3.2 tablet for the enterprise market with extended temperature, drop, and ingress resistance. The Toughpad FZ-A1 is equipped with a dual-core 1.2GHz Marvell processor, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, a full range of wireless features, a security co-processor, and an anti-glare, 500-nit display with 1024 x 768 pixels and an active digitizing pen.

      • Nook Tablet is $249, and other Nooks get price cuts

        Barnes & Noble announced a $249 Android tablet featuring a seven-inch IPS (in-plane switching) display, a dual-core, 1GHz processor from Texas Instruments, 1GB of RAM, and 16GB of internal storage. The new “Nook Tablet” was joined by enhancements and a $50 price drop for the existing Nook Color, plus a new $99 price for the monochrome Simple Touch.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Which of the big five Web Browsers is the Best? (Review)

      Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Internet Explorer, Opera, or Apple Safari: Which of the most popular Web browsers is really the best?

      With Firefox 8’s early arrival, and new major updates to three of the other major Web browsers, Chrome 15; Opera 11.5, and Safari 5.1.1 it’s high time to take another look at our current generation of Internet Web browsers and see what’s what. Only Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) 9 hasn’t seen a significant improvement in the last few months.

      Why did I choose these browsers? The answer is simple. These are the most popular Web browsers out there. While Internet Explorer has dropped below 50% of the total Web browser market, it’s still the most popular Web browser. In most of the world, IE is followed by Mozilla Firefox, although in some places, such as much of Latin America, number three, Google’s Chrome, has already moved up to second place. After that Apple’s Safari, which owns the mobile Web browser market, comes in number four, and Opera hangs out to the fifth spot.

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox Version 8 Available Ahead of Official Release

        While many Firefox users are still working with version 7, Mozilla has now made version 8 available, and this version is definitely the next major iteration of the browser. Although Mozilla’s official release date is November 8, you can get Windows, Mac and Linux versions here. Version 8, is, of course, yet another iteration in Mozilla’s new rapid release cycle for its browser, but it also has a lot of new features. Here are some of the additions worth noting.

      • Mozilla Developers Testing Mobile OS

        Mozilla has been experimenting with an interesting idea called Boot 2 Gecko. Essentially, B2G (as it’s called) is a mobile operating system based on the Web, as opposed to what the project’s wiki calls “proprietary, single-vendor stacks”. Mozilla has something there–open Web technologies indeed increasingly provide an intriguing platform for lots of things, mobile and otherwise.

      • Firefox 8 Officially Released

        In late September Mozilla released version 7 of its Firefox browser, and as part of the company’s new fast release cycle we noted a few days after the release that a beta of Firefox 8 had already been seeded to developers. In the article, we noted Mozilla promised Firefox 8 would deliver better tab management, deeper Twitter integration, and new features for web developers.

        Uploaded to the company’s FTP servers a few days ago, Firefox 8 has been officially released today, with a blog post from Mozilla outlining the differences from the previous version. As with the Firefox 8 beta, Firefox 8 final comes with an option in the Preferences to load existing tabs (the pages you left open the last time you quit the browser) only when they’re selected. This should improve the browser’s startup times, as it’s no longer forced to reload all tabs upon launch.

      • Firefox 8 cracks down on add-ons
  • SaaS

    • Ignition, Accel, Greylock Put $40M In Apache Hadoop Distribution Platform Cloudera

      Cloudera, the startup that commercially distributes and services Apache Hadoop based data management software and services, has raised $40 million in new funding led by Ignition Partners, Greylock, Accel, Meritech Capital Partners, and In-Q-Tel. Cloudera previously raised $36 million from Accel Partners, Diane Greene, Qi Lu, Jeff Weiner, Marten Mickos, Gideon Yu, Caterina Fake, Greylock Partners, Meritech Capital Partners, and In-Q-Tel. The startup actually just raised $25 million last Fall.

  • Databases

    • MongoDB: Real, FUD or Hoax controversy spreads online

      Is it FUD, a hoax or a real complaint about MongoDB? That is the question being asked by many after an anonymous posting on Pastebin called “Don’t use MongoDB” created a flurry of controversy around the open source NoSQL database. The posting, alledgedly by an ex-user of the database, claimed that MongoDB loses data in various situations, including deleting the entire dataset, and that 10gen, the company behind MongoDB, was not prioritising reliability and instead chasing benchmarks. The eight part list also included complaints about performance on busy servers, recovery from database corruption and issues with replication stopping.

  • Education

    • Experiences Teaching Free and Open Source GIS at the Community College Level

      What’s it like to teach using free and open source GIS? Kurt Menke runs his own GIS consulting business in Albuquerque, New Mexico and also teaches at Central New Mexico Community College. He has developed a course called “Introduction to Open Source GIS and Web Mapping.” In this article, he describes the impetus behind the course development, details the course content and offers some of the lessons he’s learned in the process.

  • BSD

    • Why aren’t you using FreeBSD?

      Here I sit, watching a freshly installed FreeBSD box run through cvsup on all ports, to be closely followed by a new kernel compilation. As the output flies by in the xterm, I find myself wondering why I don’t run into more FreeBSD in the world.

      The truth is that I’ve been using some form of BSD since 1993 or so (the days of BSD/386). A foundational server that I’ve run since 1995 used BSDi initially, transitioning to FreeBSD back in the 3.0 release days. I can’t contemplate using any other OS for this box and the myriad tasks it performs. We’re not talking about a system that sits idle most of the time; this box generally deals with 250,000 to 300,000 emails a day (mostly spam, which produces a heavier load than actual mail delivery), and it serves up DNS, Web, and SMTP/POP/IMAP services for dozens of domains. It generally hovers at a load of 0.50 with the occasional spike.

  • Project Releases

    • Apache Tika reaches 1.0

      Version 1.0 of the Apache Tika metadata and structured text content detector and extractor has been released. The project began as a sub-project of Apache Lucene in 2007 and became a top level project in May last year.

    • VirtualBox 4.1.6 fixes 3D support on Fedora 15

      Version 4.1.6 of VirtualBox has been released. The third maintenance update to the 4.1.x branch of the open source desktop virtualisation application for x86 hardware improves its overall stability and addresses several issues found in previous builds.

    • New Milestone For Phoronix Test Suite 3.6-Arendal
  • Programming

    • 10 years of Eclipse: Consolidating the Java IDE market

      Ten years ago, IBM first presented the Eclipse development environment to a global audience as open source software. Wherever such figures may originate from: the estimated $40 million that the donated code including marketing efforts was said to be worth at the time in 2001 have turned into more than $800 million today, estimates Eclipse Foundation Executive Director Mike Milinkovich; the Eclipse Foundation was founded in 2004.

    • The H Speed Guide to Node.js

      Node.js, or Node for short, has become rather popular with web developers in the last year as a platform for their web applications. No one is talking about replacing the entire world of web servers with Node.js based systems, but Node is flexible enough to be able to take on a wide range of tasks. So what makes Node different to preceding web frameworks and platforms? Two words, event-based JavaScript.

    • Popcorn.js 1.0: Mozilla’s new HTML5 media toolkit

      Mozilla has announced the launch of version 1.0 of Popcorn, a new HTML5 media toolkit from the non-profit organisation. The Popcorn.js library is a event framework for HTML5 media that combines HTML and JavaScript; “Think jQuery for video” says the project’s site.

      Using Popcorn.js, developers can create interactive time-based media content using video and audio assets, combined with web content including real-time social media, news and visualisations. “Popcorn allows web filmmakers to amp up interactivity around their movies, harnessing the web to expand their creations in new ways,” said Mozilla Executive Director Mark Surman.

Leftovers

  • Killer Apps: the Defining Applications of Each Computing Wave
  • Why Google Plus Pages (Will) Beat Facebook. And Twitter
  • Router problem disrupts Level 3 network in North America and Europe

    On Monday, several US and UK ISPs, including Time Warner Cable, Research in Motion, Eclipse Internet, Easynet and Merula, reported a range of errors and problems on the Level 3 backbone. Level 3 has now confirmed the reports. The cause of the problems appears to have been a bug in Juniper’s Junos router operating system affecting the border gateway protocol (BGP).

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Security

  • Finance

    • EU-China High Level Political Parties & Groups Forum

      The EU-China High Level Political Parties & Groups Forum, initiated in May 2010 in Beijing, gathers politicians from the European political families, together with Chinese representatives from the International department Central Committee of CPC and other institutions. It provides a tool for dialogue between politicians from China and from the EU.

    • Goldman Sachs–Where Are Your Cojones?

      Well, Goldman Sachs, since “deferred prosecution” is the vogue nowadays and really means that no one in your bank, whether CEO, COO or CFO, no one will be prosecuted for their responsibility for the financial meltdown or, if by some miracle or two someone is found responsible, the bank will just pay a fine and carry on.

      That act is the remarkable indictment of the US justice system: Goldman Sachs commits accounting control fraud that makes it billions and billions of fraudulent dollars and then, when it is found out, it just pays a few millions and carries on.

    • CMD Requests IRS Investigate Charity Accused of Fronting Private Jets for Presidential Campaign

      Madison — Today, the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) filed a letter requesting that the Internal Revenue Service investigate a charity operated by Wisconsin political veteran Mark Block that spent over $40,000 of tax-exempt donations to pay for private jets, travel, and computers for Herman Cain’s presidential bid. CMD also requested an examination of other Mark Block-related groups sharing the same address or other commonalities. Mr. Cain, who has denied knowing who paid for his various travels, is not the target of these requests to the IRS.

      These requests follow an October 30 story by the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel’s Dan Bice revealing that “Prosperity USA,” which was created by Mr. Block, had footed the bill for expenses related to Mr. Cain’s bid for the White House. Prosperity USA’s financial records show the charity expected to get reimbursed. Tax-exempt charities are prohibited from intervening in the political campaign for any candidate for public office, no matter the post.

    • US IT sector gains jobs
  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • New Investigative Report Highlights Koch Brothers’ Reach in Influencing Democracy

      Charles and David Koch, each worth about $25 billion, could be the most influential duo in the United States. These brothers have accumulated their fortune through Koch industries — an oil refining, chemical, paper products and financial services company with revenues of some $100 billion per year. A new documentary by Bob Abeshouse on the Kochs illustrates how these brothers use their billions to manipulate some in the public into voting for their right-wing agenda and to push policies that strip protections for people’s health.

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