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Links 01/06/2009: More Evidence of GNU/Linux Growth

Posted in News Roundup at 4:14 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Interactive Ideas gets a lift from Linux sales

    It expects to record turnover of £16m for its financial year to 30 April ­ double the £8m sales it rang up two years ago. Linux sales, which represent its largest revenue stream, rose 65 per cent year-on-year.

  • Developers take a shift from Windows to Linux

    The Eclipse Foundation, a not-for-profit, member supported corporation that hosts the Eclipse projects, recently announced the Eclipse Community Survey 2009 in The Open Source Developer Report.

    According to the report, Linux has become the most common deployment platform for the developer community. There is a shift from the Microsoft Windows to Linux and Mac OSX for their desktop development operating system.

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 47

    Editorial: Linux for Kids
    Distributions announced last week:
    · Linux Mint 7 Is Based on Ubuntu 9.04
    · CentOS 5.3 Live CD Released
    · PC/OS Open64 Workstation 10 Is Based on Ubuntu 9.04
    · Calculate Linux Desktop 9.6 Has KDE 4.2.3
    Other News: Online Backup Solution from Mandriva, Ubuntu AppCenter, SouthEast LinuxFest and more…
    Application of the Month: Rhythmbox


  • Keeping the PC personal at school.

    One thought that came to mind was to dual-boot Ubuntu or have a Linux-on-a-stick.

  • Red Hat Sees Strong Demand For Cloud Computing

    As many as 50 of its customers have begun building private compute clouds using Red Hat Linux, says Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst. A few are investigating “semi-private clouds,” in which they plan to share IT resources with trusted partners.

    Speaking at the recent Federal IT on a Budget Forum in Washington, Whitehurst said Red Hat sees a “a ton of demand” for private, semi-private, and public clouds. As an operating system and middleware provider, Red Hat doesn’t have a bias toward private or public clouds; both are business opportunities for Red Hat.

  • Kernel Space

    • Gallium3D Picks Up Networking Support

      The folks at Tungsten Graphics, which are owned by VMware, have been busy with new software releases so far this summer. Mesa 7.5 is coming along well and the Gallium3D driver architecture is now merged into the Mesa mainline code-base for release with Mesa 7.6. When it comes to Gallium3D an OpenVG state tracker has been released along with two OpenGL ES state trackers to accelerate the OpenGL ES 1.1 and 2.0 APIs. There are also OpenCL and OpenGL 3.1 state trackers under development.

    • Memory leak & invalid memory deallocation detection in the Linux kernel for modules using exclusively Operating System Abstraction Layer

      Memory leaks and memory corruptions are problems that can be easily introduced in code written in C or C++ and generally in any programming language that does not have a garbage collector built in, causing system crashes and sometimes, even worse unexpected behavior, creating bugs that are difficult to be detected.

  • Applications

    • Create a DIY Planner with Dynamic Templates

      The D*I*Y Planner Web site is a real treasure trove for fans of DIY paper-based personal organizers like Hipster PDA. Among other things, it offers a wealth of ready-to-print templates, an excellent handbook of how to build your own D*I*Y planner, and even an OpenOffice.org-based widget kit for creating custom planner templates.

    • EGLIBC: Not a fork, but a glibc distribution

      The GNU C library (or glibc) is a fundamental component of the Linux operating system. It provides much of the user-space interface to the kernel as well as a sizable portion of the utility routines that are used by virtually all Linux applications. A variant of glibc—known as Embedded glibc or EGLIBC—is not very well known outside of the embedded space, but that looks to be changing with the announcement that Debian will switch from glibc to EGLIBC.

  • Distributions

    • Tiny Core Linux 2.0 RC4 released

      The Tiny Core developers have announced the availability of the fourth release candidate (RC) of Tiny Core Linux 2.0. Tiny Core is only about 10 MB in size and is based on the 2.6 Linux kernel. The RC4 release now includes Micro Core, a new 7 MB separate ISO that’s based on the same core as Tiny Core, but does not include the X environment.

    • Taking a look At Debris Linux

      I won’t do a full review of Debris Linux until version 2.0 is released. I generally consider it unfair to judge a distro based on beta or development code. What I can say now is that while I’ve found a few relatively minor bugs (which I will document and report, of course), I believe Debris Linux 1.7.0 is surprisingly close to being ready for prime time. For a newcomer to Linux, the only issue that might be challenging is figuring out what to add to make hardware that isn’t supported out of the box functional. Debris Linux is already worth a look if you want a small, simple Ubuntu-based distro that performs well. The developers are successfully sticking with their philosophy and meeting their goals for a compact distro while providing the basic functionality most people will look for.

    • What makes a good Linux distribution?

      Lately, I have written various articles that have stirred the pot regarding the various Linux distributions available. I have heard quite a bit of dislike for Ubuntu, GNOME, and KDE 4. In fact I have heard opinions from people that make me wonder why they even use Linux.

      I have come across plenty of distributions that I will never use again. I have played with desktops that will only have ever graced my screen once or twice. But to say I hate them? No matter how much I dislike these tools, they are still a part of the Linux community and that at least gives them some credibility.

  • Ubuntu Derivatives

    • Free as Free Can Be–gNewSense Linux 2.2

      Linux has, in some ways, always been a bit politicized in the sense that there are true believers among Linux users and developers that all software should be truly free. When I say free, I mean free as in free to use and share with others without any restrictions on that usage or sharing. gNewSense Linux is a distribution that is strongly devoted to those ideals.

    • Mint 7

      Ubuntu Jaunty was released around 2 months ago now, and the Linux Mint team have been busy coding their version based upon it.

      In my opinion, Linux Mint has always been a great distro, taking the excellent points of Ubuntu, and removing some of the bad points, such as the lack of multimedia plugins, and replacing the warm brown with a cool crisp green (actually I like the brown, but many do not)

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Qualcomm Shows Off Snapdragon Smartbooks

      A drawback is that the Windows operating systems do not run on either of the two Snapragon processors: the 1-GHz QSD8x50, a new, upgraded 1.3-GHz QSD8650A, and the 1.5-GHz, dual-core QSD8672. That means that any smartbooks produced using the chip must run Linux, which consumers have seemed to shy away from, at least where netbooks are concerned.

    • Inventec Ready to Ship Snapdragon Laptop in Q4

      Inventec’s latest reference design, running the Millos Linux operating system on a 10.1 inch screen, will be displayed by Qualcomm this week at Computex in Taipei. The laptop, intended to demonstrate the possibilities of the platform but not be a commercial product, uses a 1 GHz Snapdragon CPU. It features a 1,024 by 600 pixel resolution screen, a 64GB flash disk and integrated 3G wireless. It weighs about 800 grams.

    • 30 Snapdragon gadgets in the pipeline

      The spokesman said that an open source Linux OS will be used to underpin the graphical user interface on devices powered by Snapdragon, but that the GUI (graphical user interface) will be more important to the user than the OS.

    • Pegatron to Show Touchscreen Netbook With ARM Chips

      Google’s Android software runs on ARM processors, but the person did not say whether the netbook will host Android software on board. There are a number of operating systems available for ARM-based netbooks, including Ubuntu Linux and Microsoft Windows Mobile, in addition to Android.

    • Companies to show several ARM netbooks at Computex

      While Inglis did not comment on what kind of software the devices will run, he said Linux looks very interesting this year.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Women in Open Source: the Definitive Resource

    A couple of months ago, I was asking “Where are the alpha *female* hackers?” I received various helpful answers, albeit rather few of them. Here’s a rather fuller answer to my question: the June 2009 edition of Open Source Business Resource, devoted entirely to Women in Open Source…

  • Why Security by Obscurity Fails, Part 674

    Although these are physical, rather than software locks, the lesson is the same: there is no such thing as an unpickable lock, there is no such thing as unhackable software, even if it’s closed and encrypted. Since *someone* will be able to find the flaws in your software, you may as well open it open so that they can be found and fixed. Go open source.

  • OpenSolaris is becoming more like regular Solaris

    Support deals are now the same for the open source and commercial versions of the OS; open source upgrade also adds Sparc support

  • Dailymotion tests non-Flash video portal

    French video portal Dailymotion is ditching the use of proprietary plug-ins such as Flash and Silverlight for its “pré bêta” Dailymotion site. Instead, the open video site is exploring the possibilities offered by HTML 5 and the pre-release version of Firefox 3.5. Rather than using a plug-in, the HTML 5 video player used by the video portal integrates content encoded using open source video codec Ogg Theora via the forthcoming HTML 5 video element.

  • OpenOffice.org New User Orientation

    Welcome to OpenOffice.org, the world-class office suite that’s also free and open source. This is your new-user orientation. You probably already know that OpenOffice.org includes a word processor, spreadsheet, presentation application, drawing program, and database: you stay productive without touching your wallet. What you may not know are all the resources to help you make the most of your experience. Read on to discover support, tutorials, community insights, templates, clip art, extensions, and blogs.

  • First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. Then what?

    Meanwhile Glyn Moody likewise suggested that thoughts should turn towards “open data, open access, open science, open government”.

  • Stereotypes

    • Open source, and over here: OSS in the UK

      Alfresco recently launched version 3.1. “The intent of Alfresco Enterprise 3.1 is to extend Alfresco’s position as the leading open source replacement for high-cost enterprise content management systems and Microsoft SharePoint,” says Powell. “In today’s economic climate, Alfresco provides a low-cost, low-risk alternative with commercial service level agreements for organizations looking to replace legacy systems or start new projects.”

      3.1 is said to usher in improvements to service levels and response times, as well as to simplify administration, monitoring and deployment. It even supports the draft OASIS web services standard, CMIS (content management interoperability services).

      The myth of hippy developers

      Companies like Alfresco are still battling a perception in some quarters that open source is about hobbyists writing sub-standard code that just about works, and knitting it loosely together under the auspices of one open source project or another before it is given away for free because it is less feature-rich than rival, commercial offerings.

    • Linux does not equal an unwashed foulmouthed rebel.

      Linux is no longer a part of the realm of geekdom. It is a mature and stable operating system which is every bit as capable, and more, as those of a proprietary nature. Any one can use Linux, from those who have never seen a computer before to those who had seen before computers, just as easily as any other operating system.

  • Government

    • Helping Them – and You – Investigate

      As you may have heard, there’s a bit of a brouhaha in UK politics at the moment – something to do with MPs’ expenses, I gather. What you may not know is that the original cause of this upheaval is not, as many think, The Daily Telegraph – even though that has been the instrument of all the fuss.


  • Censorship/Web Abuse

    • Government official wants to bring Three Strikes to Germany

      Germany’s Undersecretary of Culture Bernd Neumann wants to adopt a three strikes policy against file sharing similar to the one recently enacted in France. “We can’t say that this is out of the question,” Neumann told the audience of a media policy event of the German Christian-Democratic Union (CDU), according to heise.de.

    • Time Magazine May Join Newspapers In Committing Suicide By Charging Online

      So, say you’re a general news magazine that’s struggling to remain even remotely relevant in an internet era… what do you do? Apparently if you’re Time, you think about charging.

    • Once Again, ‘Defenders Of Copyright’ Found To Have No Problem Copying Others

      We recently discussed UK law firm, Davenport Lyons, which had been criticized widely for running a controversial campaign supposedly to stamp out copyright infringement, but seemed a lot more like extortion to many. Basically it would contract with software companies to enforce their copyright… and would then send out a ton of demand letters (based on questionable evidence) requiring cash payments to avoid being sued. Not surprisingly, many people just paid up rather than risk getting sued — even if they were innocent. Of course, all the controversy and negative publicity seemed to get back to the company. High profile clients like Atari dropped them. Last month, some noticed a nearly identical campaign, but this time coming from a different company called ACS Law. The only problem? A little investigating suggested that the two firms were clearly related — with ACS using documents created by Davenport Lyons.

    • Obama: Firmly Committed to Net Neutrality

      Obama’s pick to head the FCC, Julius Genachowski, was one of the principal architects of the president’s pro-Net Neutrality platform. Expect Genachowski’s nomination to go before the Senate in the coming weeks.

    • What the government doesn’t understand about the Internet, and what to do about it

      Current government policy in relation to the Internet can broadly be summarised as occupying three areas:

      1. Getting people online (broadband access, and lessons for people who don’t have the skills or interest)
      2. Protecting people from bad things done using the Internet (terrorism, child abuse, fraud, hacking, intellectual property infringement)
      3. Building websites for departments and agencies.

    • USA, Canada and the EU attempt to kill treaty to protect blind people’s access to written material

      Right now, in Geneva, at the UN’s World Intellectual Property Organization, history is being made. For the first time in WIPO history, the body that creates the world’s copyright treaties is attempting to write a copyright treaty dedicated to protecting the interests of copyright users, not just copyright owners.

  • Copyrights

    • Swedish pirate party tipped for EU win

      THE SWEDISH Pirate Party has been favoured to win at least one seat in the European parliament this week.

    • Lars Gustafsson: “Why my vote goes to the Pirate Party” (English translation of today’s text)

      Lars Gustafsson is probably Sweden’s most profilic living writer. Since the late 1950’s he has produced a steady flow of poetry, novels and literary criticism. At the same time, he has until recently been active as professor of philosophy at the University of Texas. Now he’s back in Sweden and just started publishing himself on a blog. He has also received a long list of literary awards, most recently – only two days ago – the Selma Lagerlöf award.

    • BBC and YouTube may launch international iPlayer site

      The BBC and YouTube are believed to be in talks over launching the BBC’s iPlayer catch-up TV service internationally.

    • EFF gives copyright education a crack with new curriculum

      Not pleased with the copyright curricula generated by Big Content, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has produced classroom materials of its own. Not surprisingly, fair use, the public domain, and artists who love P2P file-sharing of their music all make appearances.

    • EFF Launches Copyright Curriculum To Counter RIAA Propaganda Being Handed Out To Schools

      It’s been quite troubling that for years various schools have simply accepted propaganda and totally inaccurate “teaching materials” about copyright and used them to teach students. These programs have been created by both the RIAA and the MPAA, at times. More recently, a lobbying organization backed by both of those organizations, the Copyright Alliance (which has a long history of making up the most fantastic myths about copyright) has been pushing a copyright curriculum on schools.

Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day

Kendall Dawson, Linspire Community Liaison 10 (2005)

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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