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12.18.09

Links 18/12/2009: More GNU/Linux Migrations, GNOME 3.0 Preparations

Posted in News Roundup at 9:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • MOTSU awards deal for Linux migration

    Tideworks Technology has been selected to provide the U.S. Defense Department’s Military Ocean Terminal Sunny Point with a terminal upgrade.

    U.S. company Tideworks was awarded a contract from North Carolina-based Military Ocean Terminal Sunny Point, or MOTSU. The award follows a successful 2006 contract for a customized information technology solution.

  • Linux penetrates high schools, healthcare

    UK government policy on open standards software is being to pay off.

    According to Angela Smith, minister of state in the UK cabinet office, the Open Standards and Re-Use action plan was published in February 2009 as government policy to ensure value for money for taxpayers.

    And the Office of Government Commerce (OCG) is developing guidance for the procurement of open source software, working with departments and local authorities that have already implemented open source apps to share methods, including procurement.

  • License Management of Windows vs. Linux

    Most of us already know that Microsoft is in the game to make money. Part of this process involves tracking and making users pay for its product. This is where software licensing comes into play.

    [...]

    Linux: Land of NO Licenses

    Even with Microsoft customers constantly complaining about the complexity of its licensing programs, Microsoft (so far) shows no signs of changing anything. In fact, it makes one wonder if Microsoft doesn’t intentionally leave the licensing programs confusing. If a company were to choose the licensing program that best fits its practice, chances are it would end up saving money and ultimately pay LESS in license fees. Being in a confused state, a company is probably overpaying, which Microsoft sits back and innocently grins about, I’m sure.

    [...]

    Simply the burden of license management should make company executives start to think about migrating to open source, or even Linux. It’s a huge cost, both with actual initial costs of the licenses themselves, but also with the costs of paying staff to maintain the entire licensing program. The benefits of Linux in this regard is huge both now and in the future.

  • [Going Linux] Dec 17: #087 – Computer America #21

    Topic for the month: “Linux and Open Source for the Holidays” On a budget? Got a geek on the gift list? Give the gift of Linux and Linux-compatible products for the holidays!

  • Desktop

    • Top Ten Things I Miss in Windows

      10.) Klipper/Copy & Paste Manager – I use this one alot when I am either coding or writing a research paper for school. More often than not I find I have copied something new only to discover I need to paste a link or block of code again from two copies back. Having a tray icon where I can recall the last ten copies or so is mighty useful.

      9.) Desktop Notifications – This is something that was first largely introduced in Ubuntu 9.04 and something I quickly grew accustomed to having. Basically it is a small message (notification) the pops up in the upper right hand corner of your screen for a few moments when something happens in one of your programs (a torrent finishes, you get a new instant message, ect.) or you adjust the volume/brightness settings on your system.

    • ASUS Selects Paragon Software for End-to-End Linux-Based Solutions to Access Windows Formatted Hard Drives

      Paragon Software Group (PSG), the technology leader in innovative data security and data management solutions, has been selected by ASUS® to develop an end-to-end solution that will provide home and business networks with full high-performance access to Windows® NTFS formatted storage from ASUS Linux-based hardware.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 2.6.33-rc1

      So the merge window is closed, and -rc1 is out there now.

      Talking about the merge window: there were a _lot_ of trees that left their pull requests pretty dang late. Not everything I merged yesterday and today were late pull requests, but a lot of it was. I’m used to have a fairly busy last day of the merge window, but it was a busy last two days this time – definitely worse than usual.

    • Graphics Stack

      • The xorg.conf.d Patches Emerge

        One of the features being worked on for X Server 1.8 is the removal of HAL support. The FreeDesktop.org Hardware Abstraction Layer project is nice in that is multi-platform, but the HAL project has largely been abandoned and is being replaced by UDisks and similar projects.

      • AMD Catalyst 9.12 For Linux Released

        AMD has today delivered their last proprietary Linux driver update for the year, Catalyst 9.12. However, if you were hoping Catalyst 9.12 would deliver on some of your holiday wishes, guess again. There still is no pure, usable XvBA support besides using the VA-API to XvBA wrapper and the Catalyst 9.12 driver just doesn’t bring much. There is though one small addition and that is a few options have been added to the AMD Catalyst Control Center Linux Edition.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • GNOME

      • Nautilus Begins To Change For GNOME 3.0

        While GNOME 3.0 will not be released until September 2010, many of the GNOME packages are beginning to change in preparation for this major overhaul of the GNOME desktop even though the GNOME 2.30 release is still ahead of us. While Zeitgeist, G-Streamer, Clutter/Mutter, and GNOME Shell grab most of the attention, the mature Nautilus file-browser is receiving some improvements too.

    • KDE

      • the pulse

        One of the other hot topics for the 4.4 release of the KDE Workspaces has been the use of JavaScript. With 4.4, you can define the defaults for a Plasma Desktop layout using JavaScript as well as change the layout of a Plasma Desktop session at runtime either interactively or via scripts that get run at startup. (There is documentation here, but we really should have an article based on that in the Techbase Sys Admin section; anyone up for writing that?)

  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

      • Major gains for Red Hat demands increased commitment from partners

        In an effort to keep up with the demand for Red Hat software and services, Red Hat’s Advanced Partner, LinuxIT, in the UK has more than tripled its Red Hat Certifications in 2009.

        In line with Red Hat’s 25% revenue growth this year, LinuxIT Europe has seen a massive increase in demand for Red Hat Enterprise Linux. In a difficult economy there has been a surge in spending on Red Hat Enterprise Linux and associated professional services; and there is no sign of it abating.

    • Debian Family

      • Ubuntu 9.10 is great

        In all I find ubuntu 9.10 to be pleasant and in particular I am very happy with 3 things:
        # pulseaudio is much better integrated with the sound controls.
        # mythtv 0.22 rocks. The clutter interface is much better.
        # flash works much better using a lot less resources. Now I can actually watch ABC ivew on my netbook.

      • WillWillIbex – One of The Best Forgotten Themes For Ubuntu?

        WillWillIbex was a proposed “design” for Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex made by a one Will Williams back in 2008.

        At the time it was nothing more than a mock-up made in Photoshop but the design so resonated with people that it was soon etched into the wiles of reality and made available to download.

      • Setting up Ubuntu 9.10

        Today I finally installed Ubuntu 9.10. I’ve only been on the upgraded system for a few hours, but everything seems to be working smoothly.

      • Improvements Coming To The Desktop Notification Area

        The DesktopExperienceTeam propose to migrate the different applets to using simple menus. This change should provide a more consistent interface and be an important step to improve the user experience with the right hand side of the panel.

      • community.linuxmint.com (alpha)

        We’re currently developing a website for the Linux Mint community where you’ll be able to do the following:

        * Have ideas to improve Linux Mint, comment and rate other people’s ideas (similar to a light version of “Brainstorm”)
        * Register your hardware devices, find people with the same hardware as you and if it doesn’t work for you and it worked for them, see how they got their hardware to work with Linux Mint.
        * Browse, rate and install software (what’s currently called “Software Portal”)
        * Suggest new software

        [...]

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Google ‘in talks’ over Googlenetbook

      Citing multiple unnamed sources, TechCrunch says that the Mountain View Chocolate Factory has sent an RFP, or “request for proposal,” to the mystery manufacturer and that the two have actually discussed building a Google-branded Chrome OS device.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Is an Open Source Online Video Platform Right for You?

    Can Kaltura’s open-source OVP really do everything that a closed-source provider can do? Unfortunately that’s not in my realm of knowledge to answer. Can it do some things better than a closed-source can? You’ll likely get differing opinions from developers on that one. Does it really have an “easy” solution that makes it accessible to a larger audience of video publishers? Yes, but I would say it appears to be heavily towards one type of audience – those with IT resources available. It would be interesting to find out if anybody without programming experience could actually build an successful video experience using just limited version of the Kaltura video program… and say it was “easy.”

  • Mozilla

    • Firefox 3.6 Beta (revision 5) now available for download

      This morning the Mozilla community released Firefox 3.6 Beta 5, making it available for free download and issuing an automatic update to all Firefox 3.6 beta users. This update contains over 100 fixes from the last Firefox 3.6 beta, containing many improvements for web developers, Add-on developers, and users. Over 70% of the thousands of Firefox Add-ons have now been upgraded by their authors to be compatible with Firefox 3.6 Beta. If your favorite Add-on isn’t yet compatible, you can also download and install the Add-on Compatibility Reporter – your favorite Add-on author will appreciate it!

  • Databases

  • CMS

    • Monty Python using Drupal

      Time to bring up your favorite Monty Python quotes, because Monty Python is using Drupal! Check it out at http://pythonline.com. Good example of a community website built with Drupal.

  • Licensing

    • Understanding licenses, bit by bit (2)

      Thanks to all those who commented on my recent proposal to “iconify” licenses. That is, representing the essential terms of various Free Software licenses as icons so you can quickly get a feel for their meaning. This is, in the current state of software licensing, no replacement for actually reading and understanding the licenses, but as a mechanism for quick (as opposed to deep) understanding it seems to work well enough.

  • Openness

    • Wikipedia Shatters Fundraising Record for Single Day

      Within just 24 hours, Jimmy’s appeal generated over $430,000 from about 13,000 individual contributors. “This is the most money ever raised by Wikimedia in a single day and almost twice as many unique contributors in a single day, as well,” the representative says.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Better Coding Standards in JavaScript 5

      In general, these changes are for the greater good in terms of code compliance as well as cross-browser compatibility (my only bane is that most browsers are not strictly compliant in terms of W3C standards, but this might be resolved within the next 2000 years.)

      At the end of the day stricter standards imply better coding and in turn powerful code that does not break. The additions of a standard JSON parsing mechanism and strict mode will be of great benefit to developers, with the potential to translate into smaller libraries for Prototype and other extension libraries required. On the whole, JavaScript 5 seems to be moving forward where JavaScript 4 failed to even get moving, let alone take off. Let’s hope that in the future these things become an ally to developers rather than yet another setback in the struggle for ultimate browser compatibility and perfect coding technique.

Leftovers

  • Google Apps Wins Over Another Corporation

    Whether or not you’ve heard of a corporation called MWV, you’re probably familiar with its products – MWV puts out everything from Coca-Cola packaging to Mead notebooks to asphalt for roads. And now, this giant has entrusted some of the technical aspects of its operation to Google Apps.

  • Finance

    • JP Morgan paying $700 million to settle SEC charges

      The settlement arose out of charges by federal regulators that the Wall Street bank made unlawful payments to friends of public officials to win municipal bond business in Jefferson County. As all Alabamians are painfully aware, the scandal over the county’s $3.9 billion debt has pushed our largest county to the brink of filing what would be the biggest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.

    • J.P. Morgan moving to taxpayer-subsidized Sprint campus

      J.P. Morgan is taking 800 employees from Kansas City and plopping them down in the taxpayer-subsidized Sprint campus in Overland Park.

    • Evening Wrap: Wamu Demands JP Morgan Documents; XTO Execs Waive Some Payout; Wells Offering Oversubscribed

      Wamu filed suit against the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in March asking for $13 billion in damages. A Reuters piece tonight says Wamu has a JPM email from the week before the sale to JP Morgan showing the FDIC talking with the bank about whether it might be interested in Wamu.

    • JP Morgan accused of driving down Washington Mutual’s share price

      In fresh filings in US bankruptcy court, WaMu’s receivers allege that JP Morgan disclosed confidential information “to government regulators, ratings agencies, media and investors in an effort to harm WaMu by driving down WaMu’s credit rating and share price.”

    • JP Morgan involved in Stealing Millions of Bankruptcy Assets – Rubber-Stamped by Judge Beatty..and Between Alan Nisselson and Marc Goldberg

      On Thursday, the Court having never required an accounting of his collections and distributions in the case, the Trustee finally disclosed that he had taken in over $41 Million Dollars, still leaving the mystery of where the money went, although most of it found its way into the coffers of JP Morgan.

      Prior to the Bankruptcy, the Bank chased after Donna’s brothers to lend them Millions for a hostile takeover of The Cooper Companies, Inc. and, due to its theft of assets, JP Morgan is now one of Cooper’s largest shareholders.

    • Let’s All Sue Goldman Sachs!

      On Monday, the Security Police and Fire Professionals of America Retirement Fund, a public pension fund, sued Goldman for paying its employees too much money. No joke. According to the pension fund’s attorney, “The plaintiffs accuse Goldman’s board of directors of breaching their fiduciary duties by failing to administer the company’s compensation plans in the best interests of the company and its shareholders.”

    • Merry Christmas from Goldman Sachs
    • We Don’t Want to Control the Government. That Was So Boring!
    • Hoffa Says Goldman Sachs Driving YRC Into Bankruptcy

      International Brotherhood of Teamsters President James Hoffa said Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is creating derivatives trades that would profit from the bankruptcy of YRC Worldwide Inc., the trucking company trying to avert failure with a debt exchange.

    • Teamsters Say Goldman Sachs Trades on YRC Bankruptcy

      Hoffa’s complaint to Goldman Sachs underscores the Teamsters’ stake in the company’s survival. YRC Worldwide is the largest Teamster employer in the less-than-truckload segment of the trucking industry, with about 35,000 union employees.

    • Demonstrators Demand Compensation in Front of Goldman Sachs Building

      Wednesday, protesters demonstrated in front of a Goldman Sachs building in Lower Manhattan, demanding that Wall Street financial institutions donate the $150 billion in bonuses they have received to help Americans.

      The demonstration in New York is one of 24 protests in cities this week around the country, according to a press statement from Public Citizen. Public Citizen is a nonprofit advocacy group “to represent consumer interests in Congress,” according to a statement on their Web site.

    • Lessons from Goldman Sachs

      Those that became short-term greedy are now faced with the consummate challenge of rebuilding their business model at the same time they need to re-educate their partners and their associates and re-invigorate a lost culture of client service first. All while the “Great Reset” threatens to derail the entire train.

      But if the design of your compensation system, evidently like that of Goldman’s, encouraged short-term-itis, do not blame your partners. Blame yourself.

  • Internet//Web Abuse/Rights

    • Sony Ebook Boss: DRM Needs To Stay And Ebooks Should Cost More Than $10

      PaidContent has the details on an interview with Steve Haber, the boss of Sony’s ebook reader business, where he trashed the $10 ebook and praised DRM. And now you all know why no one buys Sony ebook readers. Basically, the product’s boss has decided to take an anti-consumer stance. Why would anyone want to shell out hundreds of dollars on a product when you know the company that makes it wants to screw you over?

    • Censorship

  • Intellectual Monopolies/Copyrights

    • Amateur Artist Wants To Ban All Sales Of Old Baltimore Ravens Game Films Over Logo Copyright

      While Bouchat “won,” he wasn’t given any money, because he had failed to register his design before it was put into use. But he’s since sued various other companies, and this latest lawsuit is an attempt to say that no one can show those old films because they use “his” logo, despite the lack of evidence of actual copying (which, if copyright were actually about copyright would be necessary).

    • IMPORTANT: So … here’s the situation

      The NCAA contacted us, trying to bully us into simply handing all of our domains over to them. Why? Because they have “ncaa” in them. In my best Lee Corso …. not so fast my friend.

      We intend to fight the NCAA on this. We believe we are unquestionably in the legal right to retain these domains under fair use and the first amendment. Even some of the case law the NCAA stated itself in its complaint included domains containing the word “NCAA” where the owner won against the NCAA. We have rounded up the NCAAbbs Legal Dream Team of a half dozen or so board members. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has also expressed initial interest in this, and passed the information along to their attorneys. We’ll also be seeking the ACLU’s support in this.

    • F1 Racing Looks To Embrace The Internet, Rather Than Fight It

      We’ve noticed plenty of sports leagues really fighting against the internet, and assuming it’s a “problem” or a “challenge” that needs to be stopped, rather than a great tool that needs to be embraced.

    • Songwriters Guild: Network Neutrality Means More Piracy

      There has been an effort made by some to try to connect the totally unrelated issues of network neutrality and unauthorized file sharing together. There is no connection between the two, but that won’t stop busy lobbyists from doing their best to drum up such a connection. Copycense points us to the news that Grover Nordquit’s group has decided to push this line of nonsense by parroting claims by the Songwriter’s Guild of America (SGA) that accepting net neutrality is akin to encouraging piracy. How? That’s not clear, because there’s really no connection at all. The best they can say is that net neutrality would prevent efforts to crack down on file sharing (except, every plan for net neutrality has explicitly had exceptions for such things). I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I am not in favor of laws mandating neutrality, but the arguments made by those against it are so over-the-top ridiculous that it’s actually making me wonder why. There are reasonable arguments against mandating neutrality, but these groups don’t make them.

    • How the record labels spurned the YouTube opportunity

      Free video hosting, distribution and promotion would be a boon to most industries but not the record industry.

      [...]

      Meanwhile, those artists who remained on YouTube quickly realized that there was a tremendous advantage to having videos there, even if Google wasn’t paying them directly. Blues singer Joe Bonamassa said that the fact that his music was available for free on YouTube increased attendance at his shows by a factor of ten. People in the cities and towns where he was playing would share his videos, and that made them much more interested in attending his shows. It had a direct and clear impact on his own income.

    • Public Enemy Lacks SellaBand Believer$

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Joerg Heilig, Sun Microsystems Senior Engineering Director talks about OpenOffice.org 02 (2004)


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