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Links 02/03/2009: Red Hat and Oracle Dispute Returns

Posted in News Roundup at 10:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Microsoft’s Cold War Against Linux

    Microsoft is open source’s biggest threat. It paid SCO money to sue Linux companies. It voiced the message that Linux is used for illegal software activities, uneducated programmers, a cancer that will destroy software innovation and has a high ROI (Return on Investment). It has spread rumors about software patents affecting the Linux kernel, calling open source users communists and claiming that Linux is unstable.

  • When the Community is Organized, Development (and Life) Get Easier

    It’s a wise move, as projects benefit as much from new members and their contributions (even if — or maybe even moreso — they are completely new to Linux) as they do from long-standing supporters. Because finding and contacting a local group is so easily put off by prospective new members, anything the larger project can do to help interested parties find their local contacts simply and quickly can only result in a stronger community.

  • Building belonging is the secret to open source success
  • Windows Unix Subsystem finally catches up to Wine

    This is just some interesting reading you guys might enjoy. It seems, the Unix subsystem will give you the ability to create a mixed application able to call Win32 and Unix functionality. In effect PSX becomes like wineserver and you have to wrap your win32 libs as posix libraries. (sound familure).

  • HyperSpace Adds ThinkFree: Fastest Booting Office Yet?

    Phoenix just announced a partnership with Haansoft to include the Java-based ThinkFree productivity suite in HyperSpace. This adds the ability to quickly boot up and jump right in to a full-featured, Microsoft Office-compatible toolset for documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Up till now, your only productivity suite option in HyperSpace was for a web-based service like Zoho Office or Google Docs.

  • Desktop Linux: Ready for the mainstream

    In fact, I found that it makes a lot of sense to standardize office workers on desktop Linux. I now understand why governments in Asia and Europe say they want to get off the Microsoft train and shift to Linux. I thought these were empty threats meant to get better licensing deals or to blunt some of Microsoft’s monopolistic power, but as it turns out, desktop Linux is a worthwhile option for both public organizations and private companies. Those who standardize on Linux would save serious money on the new equipment needed for Vista or Windows 7, not to mention OS and Office upgrades as well. Your business could, too.


    An easier transition from XP than going to Vista

    I set up a virtual machine on my Mac and loaded Ubuntu 8.1. (Why Ubuntu? Reviewers single it out as the best desktop Linux. Many folks like Novell’s Suse as well. And there are other Linux choices.) It booted like a real OS, with the familiar GUI of Windows XP and its predecessors and of the Mac OS: icons for disks and folders, a standard menu structure, and built-in support for common hardware such as networks, printers, and DVD burners.

  • Linux Install Fest a big hit

    The ‘Linux Install Fest’, organised as part of Dishaa ‘09, the annual event of the Computer Science Department of the Sree Chitra Thirunal College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram, that concluded at Kanakakkunnu Palace here on Sunday, turned out to be a big success with the participation of over 150 persons for getting their systems installed with the latest versions of free software.

  • The Linux Action Show! Season 10 Episode 1

    The BIG show is back and YA, IT’S STILL AWESOME! We cover the up coming Ubuntu and Fedora releases, we cover the Novell layoffs, Microsoft suing Tom Tom and the SMALLEST Linux computer you have ever seen.

  • Games

  • Kernel Space

    • Need a new tech job? Learn Linux

      So it is that the Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to Linux’s growth, has announced the Linux Foundation Training Program. According to the Foundation’s press release, “It will kick off with courses taught at the Linux Foundation’s Annual Collaboration Summit April 8 – 10, 2009 in San Francisco.”


      The Training Program first classes will be Essential Linux Device Driver Development Skills; Creating Applications for Linux; and Kernel Debugging and Performance. Students who register for these first Program offerings will get an automatic attendee pass for the Collaboration Summit. If you go, for better or for worse, you’ll also get a chance to network with yours truly. For more details, check out the Linux Foundation’s Training page.

    • Linux Foundation Launches Linux Training Program

      The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux, has announced the Linux Foundation Training Program. The Linux server market is predicted to reach $50 billion in three years, and the embedded and mobile Linux markets continue to explode, which increases the demand for developers and users with Linux expertise.

    • Linux Foundation Announces Training Program to Meet Increasing Demand for Linux Talent
    • Linux is like an onion.

      The innermost layer of Linux is the kernel. Everything is wrapped around this. Before we go much further I am using Linux in the generic brand name use of the word. I know Linux is just the kernel and the proper terminology is GNU/Linux for a distribution.

  • KDE

    • Revival of an Oldie but Goodie: Kiosk’s Possible Return?

      It wasn’t that the KDE Kiosk tool didn’t exist at the time. I simply missed it. Yes, I was a bad systems librarian for missing it, and then spending days (happily, but still…) locking down the desktop and reinventing the wheel.

      With the release of KDE 4, Kiosk sadly fell into a state of limbo. Now, however, KDE developer Ian Geiser wants to bring it back to life on KDE 4.

    • My Experiences With Ubuntu 9.04 So Far

      Kubuntu 9.04 is due out in April, and as always, I couldn’t help but to start testing it early and get a good look at what we will be expecting come release day. I’ve been using Jaunty for a little over a month now, and I thought I’d share some of my experiences. In summary, if things keep going the way they are now, Jaunty will be the one to watch out for this year.

  • Distributions

    • Linux Monday: Distributions Cool and Minty

      This week on Linux Monday, let’s look at two Ubuntu-based distributions that are designed to make things easy. One’s for kids, and one does a little more of the setup work for you.

      We start with the cool as in Qimo, which presumably is pronounced as in es-Qimo, based on the friendly Inuit-looking fellow on the default wallpaper.

    • First look at SimplyMEPIS 8.0

      SimplyMEPIS I have been intrigued by MEPIS Linux ever since I first heard about it, but never actually got around to trying it. The distro was founded by Warren Woodford in late 2002 after he had tried several distributions of Linux, but found that they all fell short of his vision for how a Linux desktop should work.

    • Red Hat

      • Oracle apparently is gearing up for a virtualization play – Beware, Red Hat

        Red Hat’s move into the virtualization space may soon face even more competition than expected. But the hatters’ new nemesis in a new space is a familiar face – Oracle.

        Katherine Egbert, a Jefferies & Company analyst who closely follows Red Hat, says Oracle is apparently getting ready to acquire Virtual Iron, a virtual server and tools maker.

      • Oracle’s Unbreakable Linux not denting Red Hat

        How could any chief information officer sign up for this, especially given Oracle’s tenuous relationship to the Red Hat product it purports to be supporting? Why would any CIO invest in Unbreakable Linux rather than simply going directly to the source, Red Hat?

      • Thunderbird 3 Coming To Fedora 11

        Fedora 11 is reaching an impressive number of accepted features. Beyond introducing Intel and NVIDIA kernel mode-setting, Nouveau becoming the default NVIDIA driver, and a new volume control interface, there will be a plethora of package updates. Fedora 11 will have available Xfce 4.6, GNOME 2.26, and KDE 4.2 for the desktops.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Wind River to Offer Linux Support for Altera’s Nios II Embedded Processor

      Altera Corporation (NASDAQ: ALTR) and Wind River (NASDAQ: WIND) today announced the availability of Linux support for Altera’s Nios(R) II embedded processor. Embedded developers deploying products based on the Nios II processor can use this Linux solution across Altera’s entire portfolio of FPGAs and HardCopy(R) ASICs.

    • Smartphones Will Double Their Share of the Handset Market by 2013, According to In-Stat

      Smartphones with Linux OS (including Android) will see the highest growth and the second highest volume behind Symbian. Linux OS will outpace Windows Mobile, RIM and iPhone OSX.

    • An Eee PC in Every Room? Twenty Uses for Netbooks in Your Home

      Here’s what I’d do (most of these things require you to disable the Eee PC’s screensaver, which you can do quite easily):

      1. Watch TV. The main purpose of our Eee PC right now is to use it as a very portable television. We watch Hulu mostly, as well as South Park when a new episode comes out. We originally bought the Eee PC because we lost our DirecTV (neighbor’s trees in the way) and we didn’t want to have to run a cable to the far room, so we just set up the Eee PC in that room and streamed content from Hulu. We love it. But you need a set of cheap speakers plugged into the Eee PC to really get sound. Otherwise it works great. My wife isn’t a very confident computer user so I built her an easy menu of the sources of entertainment. (Yes, Flash for Hulu and YouTube runs fine on the Eee PC out-of-the-box.) Plus, the Eee PC has a port to connect to a larger monitor or TV (VGA).
      2. Listen to streaming music. Pandora works on the Eee PC. If you haven’t used Pandora, you should really give it a try. It is a free streaming music service where you can construct your own radio station of cool songs. You can pick a number of your favorite artists and then it will play music that is similar to those artists (as well as the artists themselves). It can go for hours with enjoyable tunes, and if you don’t like something, you can vote it down and it will jump to the next song.

Free Software/Open Source

  • How to Design a Dramatic Winged Dragon with Gimp

    Create a fantasy image with the Gimp. In this tutorial, we will be taking a picture of a baby iguana and another picture of a bat and we will combine them to be a full-fledged dragon. This tutorial is based off of a Photoshop tutorial from PSDTuts by Alvaro Guzman. I’ve made another tutorial before like this one, but for some odd reason it disappeared off the face of the earth and I haven’t been able to find it. Anyway, let’s get started!

  • Open source vs. Microsoft: Automotive battlefield

    The competition between Microsoft and open-source software reaches into the automotive space with the announcement of a new alliance among automakers and technology providers called Genivi. The goal of the alliance is to build a Linux stack that will provide a common architecture for automotive infotainment systems.

  • Unicon Announces New Open Source Cooperative Support Program for Jasig’s CAS (Central Authentication Service)

    Unicon, Inc., the leading provider of open source software consulting services for the education market, today announced a new Open Source Cooperative Support Program for the Jasig Central Authentication Service (CAS). CAS is a secure authentication system and single sign-on service for enterprise applications and platforms and provides a trusted way for an application to authenticate a user. Unicon’s Cooperative Support Program provides member institutions with a predictable cost support solution for their open source solutions for uPortal, Sakai, and now CAS. The company provides a dedicated team of expert development and technical support specialists for direct technical support and assistance. All development work and fixes performed by the team are contributed back to the CAS community.

  • The Essential Project – Launch of an Open Source Enterprise Architecture Toolkit

    Enterprise Architecture Solutions Ltd announces the launch of the Essential Project, a powerful, professional, proven and free of charge open source toolkit that comprises…

  • Public sector ruling lifts UK open-source market

    VARs could be forced to build an open-source component into public sector software tenders under far-reaching government plans.

    Minister for digital engagement, Tom Watson, last week published a nine-point action plan designed to increase the pace of open-source adoption in the public sector (Channelweb, 25 February).

  • Don’t Worry, Be Scrappy: Good, Cheap Tech for Schools, Cloud Computing and More

    For school systems struggling to pay their licensing fees for products like Microsoft Office, free software suites like Open Office may soon become the no-brainer replacement solution. Get to know your options. Likewise, in our business, it may be time to start playing around with open-source library systems so that you can steer that choice, if necessary. With an aging library circ/cat system, an expired support contract, and no plan for a replacement, I’m currently exploring several open-source ILS options, hoping that I can be ready to suggest a low-cost or no-cost fit when the time comes. For David Lininger, a secondary school librarian in Missouri, that time is now. He’s already chosen the open-source favorite Koha as his next library management suite. While the software is technically free, he’ll be spending some of the software savings on one of the many Koha hosting providers out there. That move will shift responsibility for things like records storage, software upgrades, and backups off of his school system’s shrinking tech staff and into “the cloud.” The cloud? Read on.

  • The OW2 Open Source Middleware Consortium Announces its First Annual Conference

    OW2 Consortium, the open source middleware community, is organizing its first Annual Conference on April 1-2 in Paris. With “Open Source for the Computing Infrastructure” as its central theme, the conference will present some of the latest developments in enterprise computing and will demonstrate the maturity of open source for the enterprise information system infrastructure.

  • ‘Cloud’

    • Eucalyptus: the unsung hero of Open Source?

      Eucalyptus is an open-source infrastructure for the implementation of cloud computing on computer clusters. Its name is an acronym for “Elastic Utility Computing Architecture for Linking Your Programs To Useful Systems”.

      The current interface is compatible with Amazon’s EC2 cloud computing interface. Tom Callway speaks to Rich Wolski, the project’s director, about how Eucalyptus can be leveraged by enterprises and where it sits along side proprietary alternatives like Windows Azure.

    • The CIO’s Place in the Cloud

      Open source software has been delivering on this superior economic model since the turn of the millennium. By adopting open source that adheres to open standards and leverages this new economic model, companies are releasing themselves from the large capital outlay and vendor lock-in of legacy proprietary systems.

  • Business

    • Open source PBXs make market inroads

      Companies are turning to open-source PBXs as the economy worsens according to one research company. The Eastern Management Group claimed that open-source PBX account for nearly a fifth of the North American market – although a rival company has dismissed the claims as ‘headline-grabbing.’

      Because they are generally less expensive, open source products may become attractive to more corporate users as their budgets are cut, laying the groundwork for a growth spurt, said Eastern. “The price of [open-source] PBXs is so low as to attract more than passing attention,” says John Malone, president and CEO of the group.

    • Talend Expands with Funding, New Products, Customers and Partners in 2008

      Talend, the first provider of open source data integration software, today announced another year of record growth in 2008, making the move from being a disruptive innovator to an open source data integration leader. The popularity of Talend Open Studio, the company’s flagship open source data integration solution, has risen sharply since its introduction more than two years ago with 3.3 million lifetime downloads. In the past 12 months, alone, Talend’s paying customer base increased by more than 300 percent, steadily taking market share away from proprietary data integration tools and confirming the suitability and scalability of its solutions for enterprise projects of large and well-known companies.

  • Sun

  • Government

    • Free and Open Source Software to be at the Heart of Russian IT Development Strategy

      On February 25th, 2009 the principal of the Ministry of Communications and Mass Communications met with representatives of Russian Free and Open Source Software (RFOSS) development companies, including VDEL, at the Ministry of Communications and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss concrete steps that can be taken by the State to support RFOSS development process.

  • Open (But No Source Code)

    • Harnessing the Crowd to Make Better Drugs: Merck’s Friend Nails Down $5M to Propel New Open Source Era

      Sage is built on the premise that vast networks of genes get perturbed, or thrown off-kilter, in complex diseases like cancer, diabetes, and obesity. Scientists can’t just pick one faulty gene or protein and make a magic bullet to shut it down. But what if researchers around the world capturing genomic profiles on patients could get all of their data to talk to each other through a free, open database? A researcher in Seattle looking at how all 35,000 genes in breast cancer patients are dialed on or off at a certain stage of illness might be able to make critical comparisons by stacking results up against a deeper and broader data pool that integrates clinical, genetic, and other molecular data from peers in, say, San Francisco, New Haven, CT, or anywhere else.

    • Connexions: An Open Source Initiative to Kill Textbooks

      If you haven’t checked out TED, then you’re missing out on some big ideas. The conference, who’s acronym stands for “Technology, Entertainment, Design”, seeks to uncover and showcase “ideas worth spreading.” The annual conference brings together the world’s most fascinating thinkers and dowers, who are challenged to give the “talk of their lives” in under 18 minutes.

Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day

Gabriella Coleman, an anthropologist, explains Free Software culture 02 (2004)

Ogg Theora

Digital Tipping Point is a Free software-like project where the raw videos are code. You can assist by participating.

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