06.28.11

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Links 28/6/2011: ASUS to Have Linux Netbook, Silver Lake and Skype Theory

Posted in News Roundup at 7:00 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Donating 20% Of Flash Drive Sales Back To Developers

    Our reason for doing so… don’t have one. We set out to provide a service that was easy and inexpensive, we somehow overlooked the developers of these great GNU/Linux distributions. That e-mail opened our eyes to what kind of harm we might be causing, or more likely, what kind of good we easily could be doing but aren’t doing.

    So we now donate 20% of every purchase back to the respective distribution’s project, foundation, company or developers, however donations for the distribution are handled. So now when you purchase a Live USB Flash Drive from InaTux you’re also supporting the development of your favorite distribution in the process.

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 153

    Summary:
    · Announced Distro: Porteus 1.0
    · Announced Distro: Sabayon Linux 6.0
    · In Other News: Mozilla Firefox 5, Top 10 Unity indicators, and more…
    · Tutorial of the Week: Ubuntu 11.04 Desktop Customization Guide
    · Review of the Week: Sweet Home 3D 3.2
    · Video Clip of the Week: Mozilla Firefox 5 Final Review
    · New Distributions: BlueOnyx 5.6-20110621, Semplice Linux 2.0 Alpha 1, Zorin OS Multimedia/Ultimate/Gaming 5, and more…
    · Distributions Updated Last Week: Greenie Linux 9N, Fuduntu 14.10, Absolute Linux 13.38, SlimPup 2.8, and more…
    · Development Releases: Parsix Linux 3.7 Test 2, openSUSE Linux 12.1 Milestone 2, Scientific Linux 6.1 Alpha 2, and more…

  • Server

    • Building a Legacy

      The IBM i platform and its bigger brother, the System z mainframe, take a lot of guff for being a legacy platform. But guess what? Solaris is turning 30 next year, as is HP-UX the year after that. AIX will be 25 this year, Windows server variants are almost 20 years old (remember Windows for Workgroups 3.1?), and Linux pretty much freeze-dried after a hectic 20 years of development. OS/400, of course, just turned 23 last week, but has deeper roots back into CPFon the System/38 in 1978 and SSP on the System/36 in 1983. They are all legacy environments as far as I am concerned.

  • Kernel Space

    • The Leading Cause Of The Recent Linux Kernel Power Problems

      “Mobile users are urged to seriously consider these results, and possibly even avoid the Natty Narwhal…I hate to say it, especially in an Ubuntu review, but the mobile edge goes to Windows for now…There are also compelling reasons for folks to avoid [Ubuntu 11.04] at all costs. Linux gamers should see substantial improvements, while mobile users suffer a dramatic loss in battery life,” were among the critical comments that Tom’s Hardware had in their Ubuntu 11.04 review as they were referencing the power regressions I discovered nearly two months ago within the mainline Linux kernel. As I mentioned on Sunday, the Phoronix Test Suite stack and I have now nailed this major power regression in the Linux 2.6.38 kernel that is affecting a significant number of mobile Linux users. Here is what is happening and a way that you should be able to workaround the serious regression should it affect your computer system(s).

    • A Comment On The Linux 2.6.38 Power Regression

      Jesse Barnes, the maintainer of the PCI subsystem for the Linux kernel and one of the developers who signed-off on the patch that I discovered is causing the major Linux 2.6.38 kernel power regression, has commented on the matter.

      When Jesse isn’t working on the Intel Linux graphics driver stack as part of Intel’s Open-Source Technology Center, he’s working on the Linux PCI subsystem. At the time the article was published last night that details the 2.6.38 power regression commit, there wasn’t any comment from the kernel developers due to being unable to reach them over the weekend.

    • Linux 2.6.34.10 has been released
    • The bigger the beard, the harder the core
  • Applications

  • Distributions

    • 5 Best Linux/BSD Firewall Distributions

      If you’re having a small computer network at home or a huge office with hundreds of desktops, cyber security is something you can never compromise on. One thing that is a quintessential part of security is something we call a firewall.

      A firewall is like the security guard at your door who keeps a watch on everyone who goes in and out. By allowing only legitimate connections to pass through and blocking connections based on a certain set of rules, the firewall secures the network from most kinds of threats that lurk around on the Internet.

    • Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Puppy Linux
    • The Five Best Desktop Linux Distributions

      While I wasn’t there from the very start of Linux. I was an early adopter. Even before Linux, though, I was a Unix desktop user ranging from the early character interfaces such as the Bourne shell to graphic Unix desktops such as SCO’s Open Desktop—better known back in the day as Open Deathtrap—and Solaris’s Looking Glass. In the last twenty years I’ve used almost every significant Linux desktop out there, and was the editor-in-chief for many years of Desktop Linux. In short, I know what I’m talking about.

      Before giving you my list of favorites though, if you don’t know my work, you should know where I’m coming from. First, I’m a big believe in What Works. I use Linux on my desktop not because I find its free and open-source software foundations morally superior to the proprietary competition from Apple and Microsoft. I use it because it works better for me. When it comes to technology, I’m a pragmatist, not an idealist.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat Expands Real Time, OVA
      • Fedora

        • Fedora 15 KDE

          I enjoyed using Fedora 15 KDE; I think it has definitely arrived as a viable alternative to the GNOME version. Given all of the controversy and problems with GNOME 3, I can’t help but wonder if we’ll see an exodus of disgruntled users move from the GNOME version of Fedora to the KDE version. If so then I think they might find this release of Fedora KDE to be just what the doctor ordered.

        • The Perfect Desktop – Fedora 15 i686 (GNOME)
    • Debian Family

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Teo Natty Netbook: Good Things in Small Shiny Packages

        Right away ZaReason sets themselves apart from other computer vendors by including a screwdriver and encouraging you to tinker with your system. Since actually using your computer all but violates the warranty for most other computer vendors, this is a nice change of pace.

        Their hardware policy is also different. ZaReason uses open hardware, so you get components that work with any Linux distribution, and they design their systems to be upgrade-friendly. They also stick with good hardware that you can depend on, rather than pinching pennies on substandard components.

      • ASUS GNU/Linux Netbook Imminent

        There it is and XP is too dead to hold back GNU/Linux again. So is Vista. “7″ costs too much in these small, cheap computers. MeeGo is a GNU/Linux distro developed by Nokia and Intel. While Nokia has dropped MeeGo, Intel is still involved and ASUS will ship products.

Free Software/Open Source

  • In defence of open source

    Equally, it’s why I distrust proprietary software. I don’t know what it’s doing most of the time, and I assume the worst. I also don’t see the need to guard the software so closely.

    An important element of open source is that is never gives up software copyright. All it does is gives me permission to view – and usually edit – the source code. (You also get “free” open source but it’s not as socialist as the proprietary software companies would have us believe.)

    Proprietary software is like buying a car that comes with the bonnet welded shut. To check your oil or water levels would require a trip to the manufacturer, and a fee to go with it. Their biggest concern is that, should I see the engine, I would immediately go and create my own car from scratch.

  • Bungie open sources the complete Marathon Mac FPS franchise

    To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Bungie, the American game developer now famous for its Halo franchise, has announced that it will release the source code for Marathon Infinity, the third game in its Marathon Trilogy. The company says that the move is something it “should have done a long time ago (but didn’t because our legal counsel ‘forgot’)”. This means that the entire Marathon franchise will now be available as open source.

  • Hacking to make things Usable

    I’ve noticed a disturbing trend occurring with software. Until recent months it was largely limited to closed source software such as iOS, but today we see it even in the FOSS world.

  • Events

    • How RailsBridge has inspired OpenHatch events

      RailsBridge logo (used without permission)

      Over 2009, two women worked to bring more people into their programming language meet-up group. Their RailsBridge effort has lessons for community building in free software as a whole.

  • Web Browsers

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Ooo2gd and LibreOffice – Almost good enough for me to switch from Dropbox to Google Docs

      Cloud storage kicks ass for those situations were you can either use an online web service to view and edit your files, or where you want a service like Dropbox to sync your files across multiple PCs. You get the benefit of a single access point to your files, and (although you can’t assume this to be the case) your cloud storage provider should have a robust backup system in place to keep your files safe.

      Where cloud storage fails is when you just need to get access to one or two files, and your local application does not have any functionality for accessing files stored online. I find myself in this situation all the time with a few OpenOffice documents that are synced with a Dropbox account, but the Dropbox account itself is not synced with all the devices I use. Editing files in this siutation is a case of logging into Dropbox, downloading the file, making some changes, and uploading it again. It’s a tedious process.

  • CMS

  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

    • Nonprofit helps government expand open source software usage

      At L-3, Jaghori runs a mobile technologies practice that does iPhone and Android development for the government. It turns out the open source model of Google’s Linux-based Android mobile operating system is appealing to government agencies, Jaghori says.

      “95% of all agencies that I’ve talked to have begun looking at Android,” Jaghori says. The agencies are intrigued by “the ability to bring an operating system like Android and really call it your own, develop around it.”

    • NASA Open Source Summit Proceedings Online

      On March 29 & 30, NASA hosted its first Open Source Summit at Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California. The event brought engineers and policy makers from across NASA together with well-respected members of the open source community together to discuss current challenges with NASA’s open source policy framework, and propose modifications that would make it easier for NASA to develop, release, and use open source software.

Leftovers

  • Security

    • UK is unprepared for Cybercrime – A look at “Digital Britain” and a prediction for its future.

      The news that alleged Lulzsec member Mr Cleary being brought before the courts is widespread. Its very telling that this “growing industry” of crime is hitting the mainstream press and it also shows how completely unprepared and unskilled the UK is in dealing with it.

      I am sure the government and its agencies will claim a great victory over the news that Lulzsec is disbanding, but lets look at this a little deeper and see how exactly it is alleged that the power of the UK Police and FBI were brought to the alleged hacker and asberges sufferer.

      It is alleged by some that the person now charged with Computer Misuse Act offences was named by Anonymous some time before, which if true really makes a mockery of the involvement of two massive governmental agencies on an investigation which stretched accross the ocean.

  • Finance

    • JP Morgan Chase sued – for FRAUD – Again !!!

      Mounting evidence of outrageous behaviour and even more examples of outright FRAUD (committed by JP Morgan Chase?) has become so overwhelming & obvious, that soon, we’ll need “State Scorecards” to track the sheer volume and huge numbers …of lawsuits… being filed against JP Morgan Chase.

    • Too Big to Fail or Too Big to Change

      Two and half years removed from the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, the investing public has grown increasingly frustrated with the lack of criminal prosecutions of, and absence of truly significant fines levied against, the senior executives and companies responsible for igniting the subprime meltdown. Pundits have criticized the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) and the Department of Justice (the “DOJ”) as capitulating to the interests of “big finance,” citing SEC settlements that have been characterized as mere “slaps on the wrist” and the DOJ’s failure to convict a single executive responsible for creating the “great recession” despite significant evidence of intentional misconduct.

      For decades, the public’s trust in the integrity of U.S. capital markets was a source of economic stability and unparalleled prosperity. To maintain this trust, investors must believe that they compete on a relatively equal playing field and that the laws governing the markets will be strictly enforced. In furtherance of these goals, violators of federal rules face civil penalties from the SEC or criminal prosecution by the DOJ. In connection with previous corporate scandals, the government held a significant number of the principal wrongdoers civilly and criminally accountable for their misconduct. In the wake of the current financial crisis, however, many argue that the lack of such accountability has eroded the public’s faith in U.S. capital markets.

    • ‘Did It Work?’

      It’s time someone answered this question.

      The Federal Reserve and the U.S. government injected trillions into the economy, yet the recovery has remained “moderate” at best for two years.

      Instead of generating “shovel-ready jobs,” most of that money benefited financial companies that probably deserved to fail. So how are these companies doing? They’re laying off thousands of people, according to a report released last week by Challenger, Gray & Christmas, an employment consulting firm.

      Layoffs are up 21% this year at banks, brokerage firms and insurance companies. Challenger expects the trend to accelerate through the year and become more or less permanent. So not even those employed at the national targets of bailout envy, such as Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, are safe.

    • Supreme Court issues limited campaign finance ruling

      The case, Arizona Free Enterprise Club’s Freedom Club PAC v. Bennett, was closely watched by advocates for reducing the role of money in politics. They feared that the high court, which has issued sweeping rulings striking down campaign finance restrictions as violations of free speech, would use the case to rule broadly on the constitutionality of programs that provide public money to candidates.

    • Consumer spending in May weakest in a year

      For the first time in a year, Americans have stopped spending more.

      Consumer spending failed to budge from April to May, evidence that high gas prices and unemployment are squeezing household budgets. When adjusted for inflation, spending actually dropped 0.1 percent last month, the Commerce Department reported Monday.

    • GOP, Democrats seem to harden stance on debt

      President Barack Obama plunged into deadlocked negotiations to cut government deficits and raise the nation’s debt limit Monday, and the White House expressed confidence a “significant” deal with Republicans could be reached. But both sides only seemed to harden their positions as the day wore on, the administration insisting on higher taxes as part of the package but Republican leaders flatly rejecting the idea.

    • Ex-Citigroup VP Pleads Not Guilty in Fraud Case

      NEW YORK (Reuters) – A former Citigroup Inc vice president charged with embezzling $19 million from the bank’s accounts — an alleged fraud that went undiscovered for more than a year and a half — pleaded not guilty in Brooklyn federal court on Monday.

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