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Links 26/12/2009: Linux 2.6.33 Reaches RC2, Xorg-server 1.8 Almost Out

Posted in News Roundup at 6:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Ornament for Boycott Novell

GNOME bluefish



  • Faces behind Linux – Underappreciated Open Source Youtubers
  • I love Google search results… OS X trails Linux

    I love Suse – 412,000
    I love Fedora – 1,180,000
    I love Uubntu – 4,040,000
    I love OS X – 28,100,000
    I love Linux – 81,600,000

  • Desktop

    • Subject: Re: Re: NO they DONT

      > > Linux should not compete with windows! Linux should compete with itself!
      > > We choose Linux because it is NOT windows. It does things better! To be better means you have to be different, ie not the same as windows.
      > > We should develop our vision and execute on that. Let Microsoft do their thing, and let the people decide which they want to use.
      > > For Linux success!=”world domination” (or even desktop domination).
      > > Success is different for each person, but maybe its something like “it does what I need it to do”.
      > Well said !, I agree as a Linux user being tired of this Windows BS.
      You both got there before me. Windows, as bad as it is, is held up as some sort of Gold Standard, largely by people who are resistant to change – the devil-you-know mentality prevails.
      I see this daily in other projects where the hardware is open source 100%, but the software is a complete mush of bits and pieces that fit only with Windows and where the few of us who are using Linux, the solution is very simple and works. The Windows solution often receive the comments on the niceness of the GUI look after they’ve gone through the hoops to get the bits knitted together.
      I’ve stopped looking at Windows problems for anyone as it’s a pain and I tell anyone who asks, including my daughter, go elsewhere as I just don’t want the hassles.

    • My operating system is better than yours.

      It’s all over the intanut tubes. My system is better than your system. Nyah, nyah, nyah! Usually with a response along the lines of sticks and stones will break my bones but names will never hurt me. The endless fights between windows and Linux advocates never seem to end. Both factions accuse each other of being FUDmunsters and zealots and both factions defend their own actions aggressively.

  • Server

    • Security in the Ether

      In 2006, when Amazon introduced the Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), it was a watershed event in the quest to transform computing into a ubiquitous utility, like electricity. Suddenly, anyone could scroll through an online menu, whip out a credit card, and hire as much computational horsepower as necessary, paying for it at a fixed rate: initially, 10 cents per hour to use Linux (and, starting in 2008, 12.5 cents per hour to use Windows).

    • Domino is Not Dead: Why Now Is a Good Time to Consider a New Value Proposition, Part 1

      Domino dynamo: this 20-year veteran buys you more bang for your buck than ever before. Martin Leon tells you about the virtues of Domino and how much mileage you can get out of this dynamo of an application platform.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 2.6.33-rc2 – Merry Christmas …

      .. or wahetever it is you’ll be celebrating today/tomorrow.

      And if you aren’t celebrating anything at all, but instead sitting in your dark basement feeling lonely and bored, you can at least try out the latest -rc kernel. Because it’s better than moping around doing nothing.

    • Multi-Touch Gesture Recognition For Clutter

      Clutter Gesture attempts to identify gestures generated from input events and then where applicable to send off these recognized gestures to the application that has focus. This framework is flexible to allow all sorts of gesture algorithms to be built-in and it can also be extended from the application side as well, but the currently supported set of input gestures include slide up, slide down, slide left, slide right, and touch&hold. Supported from the multi-touch side is the pinch/rotate gestures.

  • Graphics Stack

    • [ANNOUNCE] xorg-server

      The second (and likely last) release candidate for 1.7.4 is now available. Dave has backported the fb patches to 1.7, as said in the commit it’s multiple commits from master squashed into one to help bisecting. That issue should hopefully be fixed now but if it comes back, I’ll cut another RC before 1.7.4.

  • Applications

  • K Desktop Environment (KDE SC)

    • KDE extends Polkit support to polkit-1

      Today, the first version of polkit-qt-1 and polkit-kde-1 have been released to the public. Thanks to these tools, KDE applications now integrate nicely with the new polkit-1 with a native authentication dialog. An authorization manager, the equivalent of the Polkit Authorization System Settings module, will be included in future releases. Find out more about PolicyKit on Freedesktop.org..

    • Proposal for a new Linux distribution

      # Based on one, and only one, desktop environment. I’m seriously thinking of KDE 4 (seriously). There is a strong reason for this, primarily that KDE uses Qt, which will make a good foundation for another choice I have in mind.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

      • Salix OS 13.0.2 Gets 64-bit Edition

        George Vlahavas from the Salix OS development team proudly announced two days before Christmas that Salix 13.0.2 was available for download on mirrors worldwide. The good news for all the fans of this Slackware-based Linux distribution is that it now has a 64-bit edition, which is backwards compatible with the Slackware64 operating system. Salix64 offers an easier way to install the XFCE desktop environment, and a software repository with lots of packages. The Salix developers also prepared a software repository with dependency information for both 32-bit and 64-bit Slackware packages.

      • KahelOS Linux (Desktop Edition) Installer version: 12-25-2009

        We are glad to impart the new KahelOS Linux Installer developed to make it much more simple, easier and refreshing to use.

      • Berry Linux 1.00
    • Red Hat Family

      • Morphing of a marketeer

        Red Hat itself sells a commercial version – complete with technical support – of the Linux operating system. But Linux was created as an open source software and any developer can contribute code to the program. It can be downloaded from the Web, free of a purchase licence.

    • Debian Family

      • What I’ve Enjoyed About Ubuntu

        Along the same lines as the above, I use a much higher percentage of the software that comes pre-installed on Ubuntu. And none of that software has been deliberately crippled in order to convince me to buy a non-crippled version. As I recently experienced with my new Blackberry Tour, there’s nothing that develops an immediately antagonistic relationship between me and my operating system like spending an hour stripping it of a bunch of useless software so I can more easily find the applications I care about.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Joker Racer R/C Server

      This is a real deal Linux server that has been shrunk to a miniscule size, making it small enough to be installed onto radio-controlled cars, where you can then control it from a standard Web browser or using a client program for the iPhone (which is currently under development, seeing action only sometime next year). While the Joker Racer R/C Server is not for sale at the moment, it could have plenty of potential especially in a tie up with Tamiya or other notable R/C car manufacturers.

    • Phones

      • 2009 is the Year of the Linux-powered Smartphones

        But Linux smartphone business is not all about Android. Other phone makers like Nokia and Palm have developed their own Linux-based operating system that has been quite successful. Nokia has Debian-based Maemo, which powers the N900, while Palm created webOS for their multi-featured Palm Pre smartphone.

      • More than 50 percent of Acer handsets for next year will use Android

        A leak claims that more than 50 percent of the 8 or probably 10 smartphones scheduled by Acer to be released next year will not use Windows Mobile, but Android. The company has acknowledged that the mix of operating systems will be more balanced towards Android that has equipped only one phone in 2009.

    • Sub-notebooks

Free Software/Open Source

  • This is Larry Lessig…

    The people at the Free Software Foundation asked me to do a short pitch to support the Free Software Foundation, and I’m happy and honored to do that. Indeed here in my office at Harvard Law School you can see one of the posters I most proudly have up is the award I got, the Free Software Foundation’s freedom award, which was an extraordinary honor that I received for ideas that I felt like I was just copying and spreading from Richard Stallman.

  • Open source became big business in 2009

    Open source has long been an important development methodology. The biggest surprise of 2009, however, was just how quickly it took center stage as a business strategy in the larger software economy.

  • Mozilla

    • Browsers of Europe

      The fact that browser distribution is not randomly distributed across European countries, but appears to closely follow traditional regional boundaries is somewhat surprising and suggests that there are significant cultural factors that affect browser choice. Note for example the large gap that StatCounter shows between Germany with ~60% Firefox and ~25% IE (so over 2:1) and its neighbors France with 55~60% IE and 30~35% Firefox and Denmark ~60% IE and ~25% Firefox (basically the opposite).

    • Mozilla Messaging building nest for Thunderbird 3.1

      Mozilla Messaging has published a proposed schedule for Thunderbird 3.1, the next release of the popular e-mail client. The organization is refining its development process and could potentially shift towards shorter release cycles and a more incremental approach to development.

    • Festive Firefox Friday: 2009 review

      Instead of bringing you Firefox-related news from the last seven days, this is an entire recap of Firefox in the year of 2009. It’s been a big year for that cute little red panda and 2010 will be just as exciting if not more so!

    • How to watch Youtube videos (Including HD) without flash in Firefox

      The script should work with Firefox, Safari, Opera, Epiphany and Google Chrome.

    • The 10 best new Firefox add-ons of 2009

      This past year felt like a rebuilding year for Firefox add-ons, with two new frameworks implemented to help guide the future of extensions. Personas gave Firefox on-the-fly theme-switching, and users can expect it to be part of the stable version of Firefox 3.6 when that gets released. Jetpack takes a similarly-minded approach to feature add-ons, allowing programmers to create feature-rich add-ons from little more than HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Expect JetPack to eventually be part of Firefox by default.

    • Firefox vs. Chrome

      The first release of Chrome browser was held in 2008, then a new Google project looked quite weak and very few people saw him as a serious competitor. Nevertheless, for the year the situation has changed dramatically, if not, it is very much in mass Chrome 4.0 implemented improvements and even the opportunity to install extensions. So how Google is developing its own browser, suggests that with each update it looks increasingly to Firefox. Now, these programs do not seem competitive, even according to Net Applications, they do not affect the market share of each other.

    • Thunderbird 3 comes up with new search interface

      The latest version of the popular open-source desktop email client, Thunderbird 3, was finally released a few days ago and it sports a range of new or improved features like better search and a tabbed interface (download site: http://www.mozillamessaging.com/en-US/thunderbird). It had been in the making for about two years.

      The organisation behind it is Mozilla Messaging, a subsidiary of the Mozilla Foundation that promotes the web browser Firefox. Most heavy email users might find managing the voluminous inflow and outflow of messages a daunting challenge. The latest version of Thunderbird has come up with a new search interface, which includes filtering and timeline tools that help users dig out fast the messages they were looking for.

  • Databases

    • The European Commission and Oracle-Sun

      My view on the role of the GPL in this situation has been strongly contested by my friend Monty Widenius and others who work for Monty or who are otherwise in sympathy with his position. So far as I have seen their expressions of their views, no one has disagreed with my positions on the GPL in general.


    • Fellowship interview with Simon Josefsson

      SRE: Your Master’s Thesis dealt with the concept of storing personal encryption certificates in DNS. While still not a common practice, you wrote in a recent blogpost that some work has begun to happen in the area. How do you currently regard the promise of this way of distributing keys? Have keyservers in general improved since your thesis was written?

      SJ: The problem is not so much about technology here, but social matters. The person responsible for managing DNS for an organization is typically not the same person responsible for managing user certificates for an organization, and people have been reluctant to change their habits here. After all, DNS is a pretty critical piece of any company’s infrastructure. So I haven’t seen much uptake in this, even if it continues to be a interesting possibility, especially for the OpenPGP world. One part of my thesis was about the privacy issues around the then-current DNSSEC standard, the so called NXT record. I identified and explained that it will lead to problems when people can enumerate entire DNS zones, and even wrote a IETF draft on how to solve the problem using hashing of the names instead of storing the names directly. People in the IETF felt that the threat didn’t exist, and thought they were ready to roll out DNSSEC quite soon anyway (this was in 2001/2002!) so they didn’t want to change DNSSEC. I gave up on the draft, but years later people who were actually deploying this identified the same problem, and ended up re-inventing my solution, which is now standardized (the NSEC3 record). So at least some of it ended up being used, although not in the form or way I anticipated.

  • Openness

    • U.S. research should be open access

      The Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has launched a “public consultation on Public Access Policy”, to see if research funded by U.S. grants should be made available as open access results. I think this is important — I believe publicly-funded unclassified research should actually be made available to the public.


  • Finance

    • How Goldman secretly bet on the U.S. housing crash

      In 2006 and 2007, Goldman Sachs Group peddled more than $40 billion in securities backed by at least 200,000 risky home mortgages, but never told the buyers it was secretly betting that a sharp drop in U.S. housing prices would send the value of those securities plummeting.

      Goldman’s sales and its clandestine wagers, completed at the brink of the housing market meltdown, enabled the nation’s premier investment bank to pass most of its potential losses to others before a flood of mortgage defaults staggered the U.S. and global economies.

      Only later did investors discover that what Goldman had promoted as triple-A rated investments were closer to junk.

      Now, pension funds, insurance companies, labor unions and foreign financial institutions that bought those dicey mortgage securities are facing large losses, and a five-month McClatchy investigation has found that Goldman’s failure to disclose that it made secret, exotic bets on an imminent housing crash may have violated securities laws.

  • Censorship/Civil Rights

Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day

Joerg Heilig, Sun Microsystems Senior Engineering Director talks about OpenOffice.org 11 (2004)

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

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A Single Comment

  1. uberVU - social comments said,

    December 28, 2009 at 3:22 am

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by onstrategy: OnlineNetworking.biz : Links 26/12/2009: Linux 2.6.33 Reaches RC2, Xorg-server 1.8 Almost Out: Contents GNU/Linux Distri http://url4.eu/zOuK

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