04.06.11

Gemini version available ♊︎

Links 6/4/2011: Linux 2.6.39 RC2, GNOME Desktop Reaches 3.0

Posted in News Roundup at 6:38 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Microsoft has lost the war to Linux

    Linux Foundation Executive Director Jim Zemlin has decided that he has won the war against Microsoft and his sending his troops home.

  • Problems Addressed

    The fact is the vast majority of hardware works with GNU/Linux these days. Dell demands it. HP demands it. Lenovo demands it.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

    • GIMP Paint Studio 1.5 beats its own record

      The very nearly almighty Ramon Miranda has finally released a huge update to his ever-in-demand GIMP Paint Studio pack of GIMP add-ons for digital artists. Over 200 brushes, new high resolution patterns that resemble artistic media, and much more is what you get.

    • The 5 Best Open Source Graphics Programs

      Do you want to create your own promotional materials for your small business? Before you shell out big bucks for Adobe Creative Suite or another set of proprietary graphics software tools, you should think about what open source software has to offer. If you’d like to create professional work without breaking the bank, I’ve got five open source graphics apps that will get the job done.

      If your business focuses entirely on graphics work of some kind (Web design, desktop publication, etc.) then you may want to invest in tools like Adobe Creative Suite. Even though I’m a big fan of open source software, there are some jobs that require or at least benefit greatly from proprietary tools — though in skilled hands I’ve seen free and open source tools produce results that rival proprietary tools.

    • Instructionals/Technical

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KDE Releases April Updates, Codename: “Congrats”
      • KDE 5 Menu

        Note in bold: no official plans here, however many continuously maintained software projects start with N+1 version development long before N version is discontinued. So yes, I really think the current works at UX level are “the” KDE 5 development.

        [...]

        Ideas are rarely 100% original, and art is built on stealing.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • The GNOME Desktop Project Unleashes GNOME 3.0

        After five years of planning and design, GNOME 3.0 has been officially released. The totally rewritten desktop has had its share of both praise and condemnation in recent months due to what the project describes as “its most significant redesign of the computer experience in nine years.” They further say, the “revolutionary new user interface and new features for developers make this a historic moment for the free and open source desktop.”

      • A shiny new ornament for your Linux lawn: Ars reviews GNOME 3.0

        The developers behind the GNOME project have announced the official release of GNOME 3.0, a significant redesign of the open source desktop environment. The update introduces a new desktop shell that offers a streamlined window management workflow and a more modern look and feel. The new version also represents a major architectural overhaul, with many important enhancements to the GNOME platform’s technical underpinnings.

        The effort to deliver GNOME 3.0 has a long history. It took the developers years to reach a consensus about how to proceed with the new version, and years more to implement it. The protracted development period has largely paid off in stability and coherence. It’s fit for duty out of the starting gate, though there is still plenty of room for further improvement.

      • GNOME 3.0 Hits Desktops Today

        “In the face of constant change, both in software technology itself and in people’s attitudes toward it, long-term software projects need to reinvent themselves in order to stay relevant. I’m encouraged to see the GNOME community taking up this challenge, responding to the evolving needs of users and questioning the status quo,” says Matt Zimmerman, Canonical CTO.

      • GNOME 3.0 released: better for users, developers
      • The Two Most Urgent Tasks: Simplicity and a Keyboard
      • Fonts in GNOME 3: Cantarell, Tweaking, and Trailblazing

        Nicolas Spalinger explains why Cantarell is more than just a font—it’s a symbol of a whole new design process. And he shows you how to tweak the font settings in GNOME 3.

      • PyGTK, GObject, and GNOME 3

        Sumana Harihareswara interviews Tomeu Vizoso and John “J5” Palmieri about PyGTK, GObject, introspection and PyGObject. What’s new, what’s been hard, and what’s next?

      • How We Got Here: Part II of a Design History of GNOME 3 & the Shell

        Daf Harries continues his interview with Jon McCann and Jakub Steiner. Should we be treating code and design contributions the same, or differently? What pitfalls from GNOME 2 were designers trying to avoid? How do we deal with community indecisiveness?

      • How We Got Here: Part I of a Design History of GNOME 3 & the Shell

        Daf Harries asks Jon McCann and Jakub Steiner: what was the seed that got GNOME 3 going? How does modularity cause problems? And how do new contributors learn a project’s design philosophy?

      • Letter From The Editor

        With GNOME 3.0, the GNOME Desktop takes a step forward.

    • Xfce

      • Linux Mint Xfce Released

        A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the release of Linux Mint 10 LXDE, the first of the lightweight desktop distributions in the current Mint series. Today they have released Linux Mint Debian Xfce, another lightweight desktop version. In addition to the obvious difference – Xfce / LXDE desktops – if you are familiar with the Linux Mint naming convention you will also have noticed the other major difference between these two lightweight distributions. The LXDE distribution is based on their Ubuntu-derived Mint 10, while this new Xfce distribution is based on their Mint Debian, which is derived directly from Debian without passing through Ubuntu along the way. The Release Notes list some of the advantages of this; the two big ones for end users are continuous updates (rolling release) and improved performance with reduced resource use.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • Try Mageia 1 Beta1 right now!

        As has been stated in the Mageia roadmap, Mageia 1 Beta1 is now available for tests. The first Mageia stable release is planned for 1st of June (which is now quite near!). Our focus is always on improving distribution content but also lots of work was done on localisation support (locales, main applications, Asian locales). Core packages versions include: kernel 2.6.38.2, KDE 4.6.1, GNOME 2.32, Firefox 4.0, … More information is available in the release notes and web announcement.

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Maps.ubuntu.com shows ubuntu servers around the world

          Information is so much easier to digest – and so much more impressive to look at – when you can see it presented graphically.

        • Beyond Ubuntu CDs, Ubuntu Devices?

          For years, Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu Linux, has given away CDs of its Linux operating system to anyone who wanted them. That’s given away as in free, no cost, nada. But, all goods things must come to an end.

          As Gerry Carr, Canonical’s Head of Platform Marketing, wrote on an Ubuntu blog, “It’s with some regret that we are announcing the end of the ShipIt Programme and the CD distributor programme. When we started ShipIt in 2005 broadband was still a marketing promise even in the most connected parts of the most developed nations. We knew that this represented a significant stumbling block to the adoption of a new technology like Ubuntu. So we invested in making the CDs free and freely delivered to anywhere in the world. Since then we have shipped millions of CDs to every country in the world and brought Ubuntu into the lives of millions of individuals, we hope making them a little better.”

        • Falling In Love With ‘Sexy’ Ubuntu 11.04 aka Natty Narwhal

          I flirted with Ubuntu 11.04 yesterday and found it a bit annoying – a typical user experience when you see massive changes. After spending a night with Natty (and ‘she’ kept me awake all night) I now know more about this sexy beast.

          80% of my complains faded as the dawn broke. One of my biggest complaints was my inability to customize the launcher panel. I installed compiz settings manager and was able to customise the launcher. There is an option (experimental) for Unity 3D which lets you do just that.

        • Flavours and Variants

          • Linux Mint Xfce (201104) released!

            In the long run, switching our alternative desktops to a rolling base also simplifies their maintenance. To users, this means faster updates and synchronised releases. To us, this means more focus on the main edition.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Infotainment server rides the rails with up to twelve cores
    • Phones

      • Nokia/MeeGo/Maemo

        • MeeGo releases pre-alpha tablet platform

          The MeeGo project released a pre-alpha version of its promised Tablet User Experience (UX), officially opening up development for the UI layer. Based on MeeGo v1.2 core and Linux 2.6.37, the preview version includes a touch-optimized user interface for tablets, as well as a new panel UI concept and a suite of built-in browser, personal information management, and media playback apps.

      • Android

        • iOS vs. Android Arguments Escalate

          Let’s say you’re a mobile developer and you’re trying to decide whether to put your eggs in the Android or the iOS basket. Recent articles suggest that it’s not going to be an easy decision, and it’s not even clear if it’s an argument worth having.

          There are a number of factors coming together that have triggered these arguments over the last couple of weeks. First of all, recent news reports like this one from Engadget suggest that Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) could be tightening control over Android, trying to restrict the fragmentation that has been a consistent criticism of the operating system.

        • Maps for Android 5.3 adds Latitude location history

          Google has added Location History to Google Latitude in its latest Maps 5.3 for Android application. Users may also check-in from home and leave tips via the Hotpot recommendation engine, says the company.

    • Tablets

      • Sony May Have a Honey of a Tablet in the Works

        It appears that Sony (NYSE: SNE) is definitely planning to join the tablet wars: Its CEO Howard Stringer told the Nikkei newspaper that the company was planning to deliver a Honeycomb-based tablet no later than the end of the year, and possibly, according to some versions of his comments, as soon as this summer.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

      • Google Experiments With Anti-Malware Warnings in Chrome

        One of the great ironies of computer security is that the computers aren’t as much of a security problem as people are. It’s well known in the anti-malware community that user apathy in protecting against malicious software is the largest security problem of all. The answer to this ongoing problem, though, is smart software that helps prevent users from downloading or exposing themselves to malware. Working with that premise, Google has implemented a new feature in its Chrome browser designed to warn users when malware is likely to be distributed to their computers on a drive-by basis. It’s a good idea, and hopefully it will be taken further.

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 4 review – was it worth the wait?

        Firefox 4 is undeniably an excellent release that brings a lot of improvements and genuinely useful features.

      • Ever Wonder Which Firefox Add-ons Slow You Down the Most?

        image

        The best thing about Firefox is that it’s incredibly customizable, but have you ever wondered how much of a price all those add-ons take? Here’s how to see which add-ons slow down Firefox startup time the most.

        Thanks to @codinghorror for pointing it out on Twitter, we can now know for sure, thanks to Mozilla Add-ons list of slow-performing extensions during startup—this doesn’t mean they necessarily slow Firefox down once it’s loaded, of course.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Interview: Charles H. Schulz on LibreOffice and The Document Foundation

      Anyone who has ever looked for alternatives to Microsoft Office probably knows about OpenOffice.org, a full featured competitor that is completely free. It started out as a proprietary StarOffice suite developed by a German StarDivision company until it was acquired by Sun Microsystems in 2000 which opened up the code to community oriented development that resulted in many improvements and two new major releases (OpenOffice.org 2 and 3).

      Last year Sun Microsystems, and by that the OpenOffice.org project as well, was acquired by Oracle causing many to wonder what they intend to do with it. Not long after a group of developers left the project to form The Document Foundation and a LibreOffice project.

      Charles H. Schulz has been with OpenOffice.org for many years and has intimate knowledge of what is going on. He was kind enough to answer some questions about the The Document Foundation, LibreOffice and their future.

  • Programming

Leftovers

  • Security

    • Insecurity

      Using GNU/Linux is a good layer of defence. Most malware is aimed at that other OS and GNU/Linux is simple and modular, much more easily and quickly patched. Being open source means many more people, also in layers, are testing/examining the code, and being Free Software, many more people, also in layers, are in a position to fix the problems.

    • Major law firms fall victim to cyber attacks

      Hackers have penetrated four major Bay Street law firms in the past seven months with highly sophisticated cyber attacks designed to destroy data or to steal sensitive documents relating to impending mergers and acquisitions.

      Daniel Tobok, president of Toronto-based Digital Wyzdom Inc., who investigated the attacks, would not name the firms. The attacks, which he said appeared to originate from computers in China, show that Canadian law firms are a target for hackers and potentially, state-sponsored cyber espionage. They follow similar attacks on governments and major corporations in recent years.

  • Finance

    • Blacklisted Economics Professor Found Dead: NC Publishes His Last Letter

      Professor Outis Philalithopoulos was found dead in his home three days ago; the coroner’s report cited natural causes that were left unspecified. Unfortunately, all of the professor’s academic work has disappeared; the only trace left appears to be the following letter, which he sent to an admirer shortly before his death. The understandably concerned recipient of the letter has shared its contents with Naked Capitalism, and has insisted that her identity be protected.

    • Austerity Comes to America

      The State of Michigan, hard hit by manufacturing job losses, is planning to reduce unemployment benefits. That can’t turn out well.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Scott Walker gives cushy $85.5K/year government job to major donor’s young, underqualified son

      Scott Walker’s administration is all about cutting costs, which is why it gave the largely unqualified son of a major campaign donor a $81,500 senior managerial job in the state Commerce Department. A state official confirmed that the young gentleman got his job after his daddy put in a good word for him. As ThinkProgress points out, Walker’s anti-union legislation allows him to directly appoint dozens more people for high-paying gubmint jobs.

  • Censorship

    • YouTube pulls Harper Imagine clip

      A video featuring Conservative Leader Stephen Harper performing Imagine by John Lennon has been removed from YouTube for copyright reasons.

      As of Wednesday morning, the video had been taken down and replaced with the message that said: “This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Lenono Music.”

      Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, owns the rights to Imagine through Lenono Music.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/UBB

    • What Does a Gig Cost?

      The Montreal Gazette ran a major story over the weekend focused on the costs for ISPs to transport a gigabyte of data (picked up by others as well). As those following the usage based billing issue will know, the ISP overage costs – which run as high $10 per GB in Canada – have attracted the ire of customers and raised questions about the actual costs for ISPs.

      Developing a better understanding of actual network costs was a big part of the paper I posted last week on UBB. This post features part of the discussion on costs, though the complicated appendix that uses Bell’s submission on network costs as part of the deferral account proceeding must be accessed from the original paper.

  • DRM

    • Could Anonymous be harming public opinion for the Hotz case?

      As I type this article I have visions of flame wars, insults and bad feeling. I would hope that it is seen as an article which merely makes an observation and asks a question (with a little of my own opinion thrown in).

      I have never supported or condoned the DDOS attacks and I believe the announcement from Anonymous and the subsequent downtime of the Playstation network with its family of websites, shows a rather interesting result.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trademarks

      • AutoDesk v World

        Autodesk makes CAD software. By all reports it is good software and it is widely used. The licensing fees are substantial but many who use AutoCAD feel it is money well spent. However, other businesses wishing to provide CAD software have been persecuted for trying to make use of the files produced by AutoCAD (.dwg). One aspect of this is Autodesk seeking to obtain a trademark, DWG, to have leverage over competition. USPTO turned down that request but AutoDesk has made a 412-page reply asking the application to be granted for a trademark.

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GNOME 3


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