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Links 2/9/2010: New Survey Shows Red Hat GNU/Linux Increasingly Replacing Windows

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  • Server

    • Mainframes Have a New Need for Speed
      The first is virtualization, which more IT organizations are starting to consolidate on faster servers. Virtual machines hunger for memory and the mainframe, most likely running Linux, provides an efficient shared memory architecture.

    • IBM launching world's fastest microprocessor
      Such workloads include data managed by DB2/IMS, and general Java performance on Linux, though we imagine the cards should fall about 60% faster as well when you beat solitaire.

    • MokaFive outs bare-metal PC hypervisor
      MokaFive thinks the market does indeed want a bare-metal PC hypervisor, and so, according to Padmanabhan, the techies at MokaFive have grabbed a popular Linux distro - the company won't say which one - and ripped out everything that was not necessary and locked it down to turn it into a hypervisor for running the Moka Player.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Podcast Season 2 Episode 16
      In this episode: Sony was legally allowed to remove the 'Other OS' feature from the Playstation 3, according to Australian lawmakers. Glibc is now really free and KSplice gets into Fedora. We report back from the mid-point of our games development challenge, and ask, what's your favourite Linux improvement?

  • Applications

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

    • TrygTech Announces Linux-based BSP for Topaz i.MX25 CPU Module

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Motorola Defy: Android 2.1 goes rugged with water, dust and scratch resistance
          Remember the Motorola i1? Moto has just added its second rugged(ish) Android handset in the 3.7-inch Gorilla Glass-fronted Defy. It's dust-, scratch-, impact-, and water-resistant. Matching up to the IP67 durability spec means it's expected to resist being submersed in up to a meter of water for up to half an hour -- making it a pretty awesome option for taking your Android to the beach, 854 x 480 is your screen resolution, backed up by an OMAP 3610 chip running at 800MHz (there had to be some tradeoffs, right?).

        • Motorola spins rugged Android phone and a new Milestone
          Motorola has long made ruggedized phones running Linux, but the Defy is only its second such Android model after the Motorola i1 was unveiled in March. The Defy offers a larger display and more features than the 3.1-inch i1, but it lacks the phone's push-to-talk capability designed for Sprint's iDEN-ready Nextel Direct Connect service.

    • Sub-notebooks

      • HP netbooks get dual-core Atoms
        HP has revamped two of its 10.1-inch netbooks to include Intel's recently announced, dual-core Atom N550 processor, along with optional Broadcom video accelerator chips. Both netbooks are available with Windows 7, but the Mini 210 also offers a Linux-based "QuickWeb" fast boot option, and the Mini 5103 is available with a full SUSE Linux installation.

    • Tablets

      • Archos releases five budget Android tablets
        In terms of the individual models' hardware, the information Archos has disclosed is sparse. To assess the devices' suitability as internet tablets, such details as their display resolution and battery life would be helpful. In terms of software, Archos offers its own Android apps for rendering videos, photos and music.

      • Haptic technology targets Android tablets
        Immersion Corp. announced technology designed to enable touch feedback effects for tablets and other devices running either Android or Windows 7. The "TouchSense 2500" solution has already been built into Toshiba's dual-screen tablet, the Libretto W100, the company adds.

Free Software/Open Source

  • You can make money with open source. Literally.
    This is an old story--two years old, to be specific. But it was new to me when I heard it at LinuxCon, and it was new to a lot of others in the room too. And it was a great story, so I wanted to share it further.

    In 2008, the Dutch Ministry of Finance held a competition to design a coin that would honor the country's architecture.

    To briefly describe the coin, on one side is a portrait of Queen Beatrix. But on closer examination, the portrait is made of of the names of Dutch architects. The names aren't all readable with the human eye, which the designer describes as a "compact disc" of information in the ancient format of a coin.

  • Open Source Problem-Solving Tool Helps FOSS Teams Stay Focused
    If you've ever been gridlocked in a group decision-making process, you know how quickly things can go from frustrating to downright unwieldy. Even with a common goal in mind, it's easy to get bogged down in data and competing opinions. Analysis of Competing Hypothesis (ACH) is an open source application that's been helping the CIA with its research methodologies for years and it's freely available to the public to help groups look at -- and solve -- problems objectively.

  • Open Source, Low Cost GSM Cell Service Offered at Burning Man

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Drumbeat: what’s next?
        But, the fact of the matter is, Mozilla isn’t naturally good at this. We’re more often than not too earnest about the web. We need to develop or lighter sexier side. Especially if we want millions of people across the web to join and support our cause. In terms of Drumbeat next steps, this is a major area we need to work on.

  • SaaS

    • CloudBees Launches Hudson as a Service
      The vision of CloudBees is to offer a Java Platform as a Service. This is cool, but the market will take time to evolve. The interesting twist that CloudBees has come up with is to offer real services to the Java community as a Cloud based service (kind of like how SalesForce is useful to sales teams, CloudBees will initially be very useful to development teams).

    • Skygone Cloud Powers Open Source Web Mapping Suite - OpenGeo Cloud Edition
      Skygone Inc., a leader in geospatial cloud computing, today announces the launch of OpenGeo Cloud Edition; the first fully-supported, open source web-mapping software suite delivered to users via cloud computing.

    • How Facebook Scales with Open Source
      As Facebook has grown, the company has worked to develop a number of tools to handle this data, both in terms of the storage and the delivery of content, and it has open sourced many of these. Facebook has been built from the beginning on open source technologies, according to David Recordon, Facebook's Open Source Programs Manager. But Facebook's use of open source goes far beyond the LAMP stack (or even, beyond the LAMP stack plus Memcached). The company has also created and released several open source projects and participates heavily in others, most notably perhaps, Hadoop.

    • Have we reached a tipping point for cloud-based VoIP?
      Given the expectation that most people have now of being able to reach anyone, at any time by e-mail, IM or voice, that would seem to be the case. And by building upon the open source base, that will happen even faster.

    • “Open Standards Of Cloud Computing, Key Challenge To Open Source”

  • CMS

    • Version 4 of Plone CMS released
      The Plone developers have released version 4.0 of their open source content management system (CMS). The developers have improved performance, included a new theme, reduced the system's memory requirements and implemented an improved user and group management feature.

    • Vividwireless goes social, open source to attract uni students
      Like the Unwired site before it, vividwireless’ website has gone the open source route and is based entirely on the Drupal content management system; a second local win for the community after the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) also launched its Drupal site last week. The company charged with building the site, PreviousNext, has continued to work with the ABC in using Drupal to launch social networking initiatives as well as whole sites including the Hungry Beast, ABC Digital Radio and the forthcoming ABC Music site revamp.

    • ‘Diaspora’ – open source Facebook alternative launches September 15th

  • Education

    • Kitsap Regional Library Catalog System Ailing
      King County libraries have based their software development on Evergreen, an open-source integrated library software system developed by a group of up-and-coming IT geeks for Georgia’s statewide library system.

  • Business


    • Software Freedom Day 2010

    • Ohio LinuxFest 2010: sudo install freedom
      The eighth annual Ohio LinuxFest is September 10-12 in lovely Columbus, Ohio. As always, this is a free event chock full of interesting hands-on Linux and free software solutions. Register at the Supporter level for $65 and you’ll get lunch, one of the gorgeous t-shirts pictured here, and that warm fuzzy feeling that comes from supporting an event like this.

  • Project Releases

    • Mahara: Who'd Have Thought?
      One of the things that warms the cockles of my heart is the widening ripple of open source. Starting, as it did, with core system software, it is now moving ever further into more specialised areas.

  • Licensing

  • Openness/Sharing

    • What would scholarly communications look like if we invented it today?
      I’ve largely stolen the title of this post from Daniel Mietchen because I it helped me to frame the issues. I’m giving an informal talk this afternoon and will, as I frequently do, use this to think through what I want to say. Needless to say this whole post is built to a very large extent on the contributions and ideas of others that are not adequately credited in the text here.

    • Open Hardware

      • Apertus Open Source Hardware and Software Targets HD Video Cam Market
        The success of a consumer-grade open-source HD video camcorder may not sound as appealing today due the declining costs and prices of consumer camcorders from Canon, Panasonic, Sony, JVC, and others over the years, but the prospect of a geek-oriented model makes the Apertus stand out in the crowd. The Apertus camera uses the open source Elphel software along with an open source hardware reference design, combining the Aptina CMOS sensor to accommodate C-mount and CS-lenses and a range of shooting modes, including RAW image files.

  • Programming

    • GitHub launches "Pull Requests 2.0"
      GitHub has announced "Pull Requests 2.0", a revamping of the Git pull request system which enhances the system's collaborative capabilities. GitHub provides hosted repositories for Git, the distributed revision control system developed by Linus Torvalds, enhancing the system in its own web front end and tools. GitHub has become one of the most active venues for open source developers to share, discuss and develop their code, building on Git's ability to allow developers to clone a code repository and work with the code without having to coordinate pushing changes back.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Web versus Apps: what is missing in HTML5
      3D gaming: There is at the moment no way to create something like the Epic Citadel demo, or Carmack’s RAGE engine on iOS. The only potential alternative is WebGL, that is (like the previous links) based on OpenGL 2.0 ES, and paints on the HTML5 canvas (that, in the presence of proper support for hardware compositing, should allow for complex interfaces and effects). The problem is that browser support is still immature – most browsers are still experimenting in an accelerated compositing pipeline right now, and there are still lots of problems that need to be solved before the platform can be considered stable. However, after the basic infrastructure is done, there is no reason for not seeing things like the current state of the art demos on the web; modern in-browser Javascript JIT are good enough for action and scripting, web workers and web sockets are stable enough to create complex, asynchronous event models. It will take an additional year, probably, until the 3D support is good enough to see something like WoW inside a browser.


  • The Tweet Paywall
    I encountered for the first time today in accessing Steve Daniels' book about Kenyan craftsmen, Making Do. Tweeting about the book (with my own verbiage) got me a digital copy of the beautifully illustrated book for free.

  • `Top Gear' Driver `Stig' Named as Ben Collins After BBC Loses Court Ruling
    News Corp.’s HarperCollins revealed the identity of the “Stig,” a test driver who appears on the television show “Top Gear,” after the British Broadcasting Corp. lost a ruling to keep his identity secret.

    The publisher said racing driver Ben Collins is the masked man who tests the performance of cars on one of the U.K.’s most popular television shows. The announcement came after High Court Judge Paul Morgan in London refused a request from the BBC to keep the character’s identity secret. HarperCollins plans to publish the driver’s autobiography on Sept. 16.

  • In Defense of Links, part three: In links we trust
    The history of Web linking has been a long chronicle of controversies we didn’t need to have: irrelevant debates over issues like so-called deep linking (if you really don’t want to be linked to, why are you on the public Web?) or the notion of a power-law-driven A-list in blogging (if you want to become a celebrity, other media are far more efficient). To this list, we can now add the “delinkification” dustup.

    It’s hard to imagine the benefit for ourselves, or for the Web, of a general retreat from linking. Writing on the Web without linking is like making a movie without cutting. Sure, it can be done; there might even be a few situations where it makes sense. But most of the time, it’s just head-scratchingly self-limiting. To choose not to link is to abandon the medium’s most powerful tool — the thing that makes the Web a web.

    A long time ago, I wrote a column titled Fear of Links about the then-burgeoning movement of webloggers. I urged professional writers to stop looking down their noses at links and those who make them: “A journalist who today disdains the very notion of providing links to readers may tomorrow find himself without a job.”

    That was 1999. Today, we live in that piece’s “tomorrow.”

  • Science

    • God did not create Universe: Hawking
      God no longer has any place in theories on the creation of the Universe due to a series of developments in physics, British scientist Stephen Hawking said in extracts published Thursday from a new book.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Compromising Twitter's OAuth security system
      Twitter officially disabled Basic authentication this week, the final step in the company's transition to mandatory OAuth authentication. Sadly, Twitter's extremely poor implementation of the OAuth standard offers a textbook example of how to do it wrong. This article will explore some of the problems with Twitter's OAuth implementation and some potential pitfalls inherent to the standard. I will also show you how I managed to compromise the secret OAuth key in Twitter's very own official client application for Android.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • German Military Study Warns of Potential Energy Crisis
      This week a study on peak oil by a German military think tank was leaked on the Internet. The document shows that the German government is closely studying the issue of peak oil, and is aware of the potential for serious consequences as oil production declines. The study is reminiscent of the Hirsch Report, commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy, that warned of the risks posed by peak oil.

    • Friends of the Earth urges end to 'land grab' for biofuels

      European Union countries must drop their biofuels targets or else risk plunging more Africans into hunger and raising carbon emissions, according to Friends of the Earth (FoE).

      In a campaign launching today, the charity accuses European companies of land-grabbing throughout Africa to grow biofuel crops that directly compete with food crops. Biofuel companies counter that they consult with local governments, bring investment and jobs, and often produce fuels for the local market.

    • Tokyo Two: Online March for Justice
      Greenpeace anti-whaling activists Toru Suzuki and Junichi Sato (the "Tokyo Two") have been facing trial for nearly two years in Japan and now a verdict will be announced on Monday September 6th.

    • Gulf oil rig explodes off La. coast
      An offshore oil rig has exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, west of the site of the April blast that caused the massive oil spill.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Lawyer Offers Self Help To Sued BitTorrent Users
        In recent months thousands of US BitTorrent users have been sued for allegedly having shared movies such as The Hurt Locker and Far Cry. Because the settlement amount proposed by the copyright holders is less than hiring a defense lawyer, many defendants have not sought legal representation. Acknowledging this injustice, attorney Graham Syfert is now offering a cheap solution to the problem.

      • ACTA

        • The Truth about Fakes (and Piracy)
          My reading of this is that whatever the industries concerned might say about how awful, deceptive and damaging fakes and piracy are to the economy, ordinary people - and the newspapers that try to mirror their views - know that the true picture is rather different. It also means that ACTA is even more wrong-headed than even I thought.

Clip of the Day

MSI Company Profile

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Credit: TinyOgg

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