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Links 23/6/2011: Sabayon Linux 6, Eclipse BIRT 3.7, and Blender 2.5 Released



GNOME bluefish

Contents





GNU/Linux



  • Desktop

    • Google: Chromebooks will succeed where Linux netbooks failed
      Pichai says that Chromebooks are ideal for anyone who doesn't want to deal with the complications that come with more traditional operating systems.

      [...]

      "We have 160 million users of the Chrome browser and for them, buying a Chromebook would be the most seamless transition ever. If you're already using Chrome sync, and you log in to a Chromebook and first time, it's all there.


    • Hey, Where Are All The Clueless Newbs Who Can't Use A Phone?
      Why is a "command line" on a microwave OK, but not on a computer?

      Why are dashboard indicators OK on a car, but not on a computer?

      Why is it OK to have three remotes with a total of 200 buttons just to watch TV, but if a computer interface has more than two steps to do anything, that's unacceptable?

      [...]

      Everybody's too embarrassed to admit that they don't know how to use a phone, so they MAKE SURE THEY KNOW HOW TO USE A PHONE. Being computer illiterate, however, is trendy and fashionable. It's considered cute in our society to giggle tee-hee-hee, "I'm a computer-dummy!" But to be a phone dummy? Now you're ostracized from society, handicapped, crippled, can't even get a job or a date!


    • Aroint thee, Linux Penguin! Thou Hast Made Me Look like a Fool!
      The moral I learned after my pride was shattered: You don't have to be a genius anymore to use Linux. Any plain, regular individual may use it provided that he or she remembers it is something different and thus wants to learn about it.




  • Server



  • Audiocasts/Shows



  • Applications



  • Distributions

    • The Stomach-Churning Prospect of Installing Linux
      Ninety percent of today's Linux distributions "can be easily used by just about anyone when properly configured and presented with a couple minutes of explanation to the new user," wrote Thoughts on Technology blogger and Bodhi Linux lead developer Jeff Hoogland in his post on the site.


    • Gentoo Family

      • Press Release: Sabayon Linux 6 GNOME and KDE
        We're once again here to announce the immediate availability of Sabayon 6, one of the biggest milestone in our project. Letting bleeding edge and reliability to coexist is the most outstanding challenge our users, our team, is faced every day. There you have it, shining at full bright, for your home computer, your laptop and your home servers. Because we do care about our community, we do listen to our users, we consider them part of the game, we decided to leave GNOME3 out for another, last, release cycle, in order let things to settle down: providing a broken user experience has never been in our plans.


      • Sabayon Linux 6 Released, Looks Better Than Ever
        €· Linux kernel 2.6.39.1; €· X.Org Server 1.10; €· GNOME 2.32.2; €· KDE SC 4.6.4; €· Chromium as default web browser; €· Native support for Btrfs filesystems; €· Support for 16:9 and 16:10 widescreen LCD monitors; €· Brand new and amazing artwork and boot music intro; €· Improved boot speed; €· LibreOffice 3.3.3; €· Entropy 1.0 RC10;




    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat Profit Jumps 35%
        Red Hat Inc. (RHT: News ), the world's largest seller of Linux software, said Wednesday after the markets closed that its first quarter profit rose 35% from last year, as revenue surged 27% amid strong demand for its products and services.


      • Red Hat Sales to Triple to $3 Billion in Five Years, CEO Whitehurst Says
        Red Hat Inc. (RHT), the largest seller of Linux software, aims to triple sales to $3 billion in five years, helped by the rising popularity of cloud computing, Chief Executive Officer Jim Whitehurst said.


      • Red Hat shows robust growth
        Red Hat shares are likely to rise this morning after its latest quarterly results exceeded expectations and the Linux software company upped its guidance for the year.

        Meanwhile, the Raleigh-based company has narrowed its search for a new headquarters site to "two or three" and expects to make a decision by the end of the summer, Chief Financial Officer Charlie Peters said in an interview.


      • Red Hat: 'Yes, we'll break $1 billion this year'
        Red Hat's top brass talks a good game about being concerned with the global macroeconomic situation, but the truth of the matter is that what Red Hat has is selling despite the economy, or maybe because of it. And all that the world's largest beneficiary of the open source community needs to do is not screw it up and it will break the $1bn mark this fiscal year.


      • Convirture Joins Open Source Virtualization Alliance


      • Red Hat Enterprise MRG 2.0 Now Available with Expanded Performance, Scalability and Cloud Readiness
        Red Hat Enterprise MRG delivers high-speed/low latency, open-standard application messaging; a deterministic low-latency realtime kernel; and a high-performance computing grid scheduler for distributed workloads and cloud computing. Today's release of Red Hat Enterprise MRG 2.0 expands upon the Enterprise MRG functionality with the following enhancements...




    • Debian Family

      • If you’re running Iceweasel 4.0.1 from mozilla.debian.net, change your sources to Iceweasel 5.0


      • LibreOffice is now in Debian Squeeze Backports
        But what about Debian Squeeze, the project’s Stable release? Stable Debian releases traditionally don’t get new packages in their core repositories. That means LibreOffice will be included in the next Stable release, the current Testing release (Wheezy). Wheezy will be declared stable sometime in the future. I’d say a year from now.


      • Derivatives



        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Verdasys Extends Digital Guardian Linux Support to Ubuntu 10


          • Has Unity Knocked Ubuntu Off Its Pedestal?
            Ubuntu, meanwhile, has now slipped down to third position for the month, marking the first time in a very long time the distribution has held anything but the No. 1 crown.


          • Ubuntu 11.04 explored: a new dawn for Linux?
            ...wait till you experience Unity - and there's a lot more to it than glitter.


          • New Tutorial for Unity Desktop Customization--Worth Looking Into
            Some would argue that Unity doesn't make things easy, though. At least in terms of desktop customization, Softpedia's tutorial is worth looking into for this reason. The tutorial walks you through cleaning your desktop, installing the Cairo dock, installing a new GTK2 theme, and making final touch-ups.

            Community outcry against Unity will continue for the next couple of years, but easy-to-follow documentation for it is appearing, and, in the end, it will probably make Ubuntu friendlier for many potential new Linux users. If you are brand new to Ubuntu itself, also check out our guide to free Linux resources.


          • Ubuntu 11.10 Development Update
            *

            Oneiric development is in full swing and with Feature Freeze still 7 weeks away, most of the intrusive changes are landing in the development release as we speak. Alpha 2 will be released in two weeks which should be a great time to check out what’s currently happening. As always: the status overview might give you an idea how each feature is progressing.

            [...]

            In 2004 I had been using Debian for a couple of years already as my exclusive computing experience and enjoyed it very much. Looking back it’s a bit hard to say why I never got involved in Debian immediately.


          • [Ubuntu 11.10 Updates] Synaptic Gone, Welcome Aboard Deja Dup
            Synaptic Package Manager will be no longer shipped as default application as an update today removed it from CD. However, it will be easily installable from repositories.


          • Flavours and Variants











  • Devices/Embedded



    • Phones



      • Android

        • 15 Best Android Apps for Travelers Among You
          Google is activating some 400,000 new Android devices every single day now(source) and Android is already the fastest growing and most popular smartphone OS in many parts of the world. In tune with its rising popularity, Android's applications base is also showing stupendous growth. We have already featured a bunch of must have open source Android applications and now here is a collection of Android apps dedicated to travelers among you.


        • New Xperia phones include fitness model with Ant+ networking
          Sony Ericsson announced two compact Android 2.3 phones, including a 1GHz, 3.0-inch Xperia Active, which offers features such as water resistance and Ant+ wireless networking -- aimed at personal fitness and health monitoring.


        • Android market share grows 400%


        • Five Reasons Why Android Can't Fail!
          I have great respect for SJVN, and I am also a big fan of his for writing sensational headlines. The latest being "Five reasons Android can fail".


        • US Patent Office Rejects Oracle's 17 Out Of 21 Android Claims
          Groklaw reports, "In the reexamination of U.S. Patent 6192476 the USPTO has issued an office action in which it rejects 17 of the patent's 21 claims."

          The site further writes, "While Oracle has asserted seven different patents in its claims against Google, if this reexamination is exemplary of what Oracle can expect in each of the other reexaminations, Oracle will have a hard time finding claims that it can successfully assert against Google, and there lies Oracles conundrum. Oracle either has to agree with the court's directive to limit the number of claims it will assert at trial, or it is likely the court will simply stay the trial until the reexaminations are complete."






    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets







Free Software/Open Source



  • Open source isn’t an innovation killer
    While open standards give customers options, execs from Dell, VMware and Facebook at GigaOM’s Structure conference in San Francisco Wednesday said that open source wouldn’t be the death of innovation or revenues in cloud software and hardware development. However, businesses that wish to survive will need to provide value over and above the commoditized aspects of open computing platforms.

    [...]

    Unlike proprietary solutions, open source offerings let developers use computing platforms without the fear of being locked in. For them, the advantage isn’t about being free so much as being flexible. “Everyone wants to be in the public cloud, but there are few that want to walk into the deep end and just jump in,” said Derek Collison, CTO and Chief Archictect of VMware’s Cloud Division.


  • The Big Open Source Winner May Be Rackspace
    OpenStack is based on a software project originally begun by NASA, designed to manage its computing needs. Since the project was first announced last July, in order to reduce government expenses and keep the software growing, 77 companies have joined it.

    Why? Ever since Amazon (AMZN) made a success of its EC2 cloud, software companies and hosting providers have been searching for a way to match it.


  • Ridiculous Assertion: Righthaven Ruling Threatens Open Source
    With the recent Righthaven ruling effectively declaring Righthaven's legal strategy a sham, someone going by the somewhat uncreative name "Plessy Ferguson" sent us the following essay claiming that the ruling is a disaster for open source development.


  • Echo Nest launches open source audio fingerprinting tool
    "Our platform becomes even more powerful for developers with this new addition.”


  • Events



  • Web Browsers



    • Chrome



    • Mozilla

      • Brendan Eich hands over responsibility for Mozilla's JavaScript engine
        In the announcement, Eich describes how he wrote the first prototype for the script language in just 10 days, 16 years ago; at the time, he was practically the only person handling the development. He also discusses some early milestones, including standardisation by Ecma (European Computer Manufacturers Association).


      • Mozilla Firefox, From Darling to Enemy in One Release
        Complaints pretty much have one thing in common: They claim there isn’t enough ‘new and shiny’ things inside FF5 to warrant a major version. This is illogical thinking because major version means NOTHING when it comes to usability of software. I’ve noticed that I can browse and use FF5 just as easily as I could FF4 and FF3 before it…I still type in URL’s and websites display. My plugins all still work. It starts up a bit faster and websites seem to load just a bit faster…which is good. So why all the whining and complaining?






  • Healthcare

    • How open will open-source be?
      Of keen interest regarding the VA's open-source project is: Will the remodeled VistA remain as open as the current VistA is, or will it become more proprietary, subjecting users to an increasing number of software license fees? To look for answers, I've asked the VA to send me a copy of Tiag's winning bid, but some clues can be found in a 72-page document linked to the contract award notice posted June 20 on the FedBizOps website.




  • Project Releases

    • Eclipse BIRT 3.7 released, now talks Hadoop
      The latest release of Eclipse BIRT, Business Intelligence and Reporting Tools, has been made available by the Eclipse Foundation project as part of the Eclipse Indigo release train. The latest version includes a reworked POJO runtime which is easier to integrate into Java EE applications; previously, as BIRT was an Eclipse-based project it relied on OSGi to deploy the report designer and the runtime, but the latter was difficult to configure under Java EE because of OSGi's classpath handling.


    • Blender 2.5 series update improves stability
      After two months of development, the Blender Foundation and its associated online developer community have announced the arrival of the second stable release of the Blender 2.5 series. According to the project's roadmap, the next stable update to the open source 3D content creation suite, Blender 2.59, is expected to arrive in August, after which development on the 2.6x cycle will begin, targeting new updates every 2 months.




  • Public Services/Government

    • Bristol's voyage to open source software hits choppy waters
      Sirius' managing director, Mark Taylor, said his company had been engaged by the council 12 months ago to undertake strategic work prior to the roll out of an open source pilot. However, he says Computacenter unilaterally changed a joint report made by the two companies at the last moment and "we were kicked off the project".



    • Bristol City Council open source project in turmoil
      Councillor Mark Wright, who pushed through the project in September 2010, was voted out of his post as ICT portfolio holder a month ago, after a private vote of Liberal Democrat members.

      [...]

      The ICT portfolio was passed to Council leader Barbara Janke, who has said she is still committed to Bristol's open source strategy, which she had backed when Wright put it before the Cabinet as an instrument of economic regeneration and part of Bristol's "Digital City" campaign.


    • S. Korea pushing to open integrated information center on N. Korea
      South Korea is pushing to build an open source-based center that will consolidate information on North Korea next year, an official said Thursday.

      The envisioned center will collect scattered information made public by media reports, press releases and announcements by international organizations, said the official at the Unification Ministry handling inter-Korean affairs.




  • Licensing

    • Embedded GPL - An Important Case from Germany
      Law suits involving the interpretation of the GNU General Public License actually tend to be pretty far and few between . . . except in Germany. And that's where we find the most recent case of interest involving Cybits, a company that makes products for protecting children on line, AVM, the maker of the Fritz!Box router, and well known GPL enforcer, Harald Welte, who in this instance is intervening on behalf of Cybits. This suit involves the actions of Cybits which downloads the Fritz!Box software/firmware onto a user's computer, modifies that software, and then reloads it onto the Fritz!Box router. AVM brought an action for copyright infringement, trademark infringement and violation of competition law.




  • Openness/Sharing



  • Programming

    • Eclipse Indigo released with WindowBuilder GUI tool and EGit 1.0
      The Eclipse Foundation has announced the release of Eclipse 3.7, codenamed Indigo. The latest version of the popular open source integrated development environment (IDE) introduces some new components and improved functionality.

      Eclipse's modular design and emphasis on extensibility have helped attract a large ecosystem around the software. It is built and maintained like a tooling platform rather than just a standalone application. A great deal of specialized functionality is implemented in plug-ins, allowing the IDE integrate with a lot of external tools and support a wide range of programming languages and development toolkits.




  • Standards/Consortia

    • The importance of standards
      Mankind has always struggled to agree on the best way to do certain key tasks. This is the origin of society itself - every culture that has ever existed has at its heart a shared set of standards by which it lives and through which it interacts with the world around it.

      These standards define what is and what isn't acceptable, and they give the members of that society a shared frame of reference by which they can understand each other. Language, commerce and even religion have all been expressions of that shared set of standards.

      Financial messaging standards are a continuation of this trend. Sitting at the heart of virtually all economic activity, from executing the smallest retail transactions to managing massive global institutional businesses, they play a key role in enabling modern society to function effectively.

      Nowhere is the cause of standards in financial messaging championed more enthusiastically than at SWIFT. Since its genesis in the 1970s, SWIFT has worked at removing ambiguity and incompatibility in how banks and financial institutions interact with each other, while simultaneously championing security and higher levels of automation.


    • UK open standards commitment cut back
      Bill McCcluggage, deputy government CIO and Cabinet Office director of ICT policy, has sharply curtailed the government's previous plans to mandate royalty-free open standards. According to reports, McCluggage was speaking to the Guardian Computing Conference in London when he said that the government only intends to implement a handful of open standards.

      Referring to government ICT policy, McCluggage said "It doesn't say we will mandate all open standard, it says we will decide upon a series of open standards and then we will decide which ones to almost fixate upon in terms of delivery."

      Although the policy described by McCluggage may have a better chance of success, it is a step back from the previous policy declaration of open standards mandated across government. That policy had already drawn criticism from standards organisations who objected to the royalty-free element of the UK Government policy.







Leftovers



  • Civil Rights

    • EFF Urges Supreme Court to Hear Vernor v. AutoDesk First Sale Case
      EFF has filed an amicus brief [PDF], urging the US Supreme Court to grant certiorari to Timothy Vernor in Vernor v. AutoDesk. This is a first sale case, so I know many of you are interested in this latest development.

      Here's Groklaw's coverage of the decision by the appeals court last year, and here's our coverage of the ruling at the district court in 2009, which had ruled in favor of Vernor, only to be reversed by the appeals court. Some background and resources on first sale cases may help you to follow along. Here's a list of important first sale cases on Groklaw's Legal Research page. If you recall, Michael A. Jacobs of Morrison & Foerster, who represented Novell against SCO successfully, represents AutoDesk.




  • Intellectual Monopolies



    • Copyrights

      • Axe the Act
        The Pirate Party is constantly working hard to protect the rights of citizens across the country. From the outset we have been vocal critics of the Digital Economy Act. The Act was forced through in the dying days of a discredited parliament and survived a judicial review. It has seen popular opposition and objection from business, it has been rejected by those who it will have an impact on as well as those who must enforce it.


      • ACTA

        • ACTA Ratification Underway, Must be Rejected
          With the EU Commission's announcement of the upcoming release of a memo regarding the signature and ratification of ACTA by the European Union, La Quadrature has sent a letter to Christine Lagarde, French Minister of Economic Affairs. The citizen advocacy group solemnly asks France not to sign this dangerous and illegitimate agreement and encourages citizens from all the negotiating countries to do the same.










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Lulzsec, Anonymous join forces to hack governments



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