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OSS

5 tips on migrating to open-source software

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OSS

Open source is not just for Linux. Yes, you'll certainly find a much larger selection of open-source software for the Linux platform, but both Windows and Apple also enjoy a good number of titles. Regardless of what Free Open Source Software (FOSS) you need to use, you might not always find it the most natural evolution -- especially when you've spent the whole of your career using proprietary software. The thing is, a lot of open-source software has matured to the point where it rivals (and sometimes bests) its proprietary counterpart.

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Code for Germany project launches

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OSS

Each OK Lab is a source of a great variety of projects, tackling different social issues and topics. For example, the OK Lab in Hamburg has a strong focus on urban development, and has created a map which shows the distribution of playgrounds in the city. An app from the OK Lab Heilbronn depicts the quality of tap water by region, and another from the OK Lab Cologne helps users find the closest defibrillator in their area. One more of our favorite developments is called “Kleiner Spatz”, which translates to “Little Sparrow,” and helps parents to find free child care in their city.

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A free culture event in Pakistan

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OSS

digital materials freely online.

With regards to the open source community in Pakistan, the situation is analogous to that on Wikipedia. Outside of a core group of members of Mozilla Pakistan and Linux Pakistan, the majority of internet users are not familiar with the free culture and open movements. This, in all likelihood, is due to a lack of widespread awareness of the movements.

Even as Pakistan is experiencing a widespread internet penetration amongst the public, unfortunately the country has not yet adapted well to the ideas of free culture and open. Copyright protection in Pakistan is a critical issue and copyright infringement and online piracy has always been a concern. With Wikimedia Pakistan, we can help to raise awareness of the advantages and benefits of having open and free platforms, and the major role this could play in developing our market and economy.

We all need to play our part in ensuring a bright future for the open and free internet. I think the success of the movement globally depends on participation of people from not only the developed countries but also from the Global South.

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OpenELEC 4.2 Beta 5 Is Now Out with New Linux Kernel and NVIDIA Drivers

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OS
OSS

The OpenELEC devs have released yet another Beta version of their embedded operating systems and they are getting really close to get a new stable version out the door. Some of the major components have been updated as well and the Raspberry Pi users should be really thrilled about this latest upgrade, as it includes some interesting changes for them as well.

"This release includes some bugfixes, security fixes and improvements since OpenELEC-4.1.4. Besides the usual bugfixes and package updates we updated XBMC to XBMC Gotham 13.2 final, FFmpeg to ffmpeg-2.3.3, Mesa to Mesa-10.3-rc1and systemd to systemd-216. We fixed crashes while playing FLAC files with ID3v2 tags, optimized some software packages and updated the RaspberryPi firmware to include the last fixes and features," said the devs in the official announcement.

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Why I Hate Non-Free Software

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OSS

I know why authours of software include such restrictions, to make sure they get paid per whatever. On the other hand, we should not have to enslave ourselves and our families in order to use a smooth, convenient application on our PCs. That’s like selling our children or self-flagellation before having any fun at all to nullify evil. It’s just evil to accept such restrictions. The licence began with “PLEASE READ THIS LICENCE AGREEMENT CAREFULLY BEFORE USING THIS SOFTWARE. IF YOU USE THIS SOFTWARE THEN YOU AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE TERMS OF THIS LICENCE AGREEMENT.” Sweet, eh? I did not agree and purged the .deb from my system. I am not a slave. I do not agree to be bound in slavery to the authours of software. To add insult to injury, the authours presume to enslave us while we perform them the free service of testing their beta-software.

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Intel Beignet Is Working Out Surprisingly Well For OpenCL On Linux

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
Hardware
OSS

Beignet is the project out of Intel's Open-Source Technology Center for exposing GPGPU/compute capabilities out of Ivy Bridge hardware and newer when using a fully open-source Linux stack. While Beignet differs greatly from Gallium3D's Clover state tracker, this Intel-specific open-source OpenCL implementation is working out quite well for Ubuntu Linux.

While I've been writing about Intel's Beignet project since early 2013, it's probably been about a year now since I tried out the code, which is developed by Intel's OTC graphics team in China. This weekend I tried out Beignet v0.9.2 as trying out the newest Intel OpenCL code has been on my TODO list for a while and it's been working out rather well in my initial tests.

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Community chest: Storage firms need to pay open-source debts

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Linux
OSS
BSD

Linux and *BSD have completely changed the storage market. They are the core of so many storage products, allowing startups and established vendors alike to bring new products to the market more rapidly than previously possible.

Almost every vendor I talk to these days has built their system on top of these and then there are the number of vendors who are using Samba implementations for their NAS functionality. Sometimes they move on from Samba but almost all version 1 NAS boxen are built on top of it.

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Haiku OS Gains Rudimentary Support For Haswell Graphics

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OS
OSS

Haiku, the open-source operating system that maintains compatibility with the defunct BeOS, now appears to have basic support for Haswell graphics.

A commit hit Haiku Git today entitled Add support for my Core i3 integrated graphics. The commit just adds Haswell desktop PCI IDs and that's about it, but was apparently enough to have Adrien Destugues' Core i3 Haswell system now light up with Haiku.

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Linux Foundation's certification sets new benchmark for admins

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Linux
OSS

At LinuxCon last week, the Linux Foundation announced a new certification scheme for Linux professionals to complement their existing training activities. The Linux Foundation Certification Program offers a peer-verified certification for both early-career and engineer-level systems administrators for a fee of $300.

The process involves a real-time skill test administered via a remote-access virtual machine running one of several Linux distributions. To ensure the rules are followed, a human proctor watches the test via screen-sharing and video camera using your own computer at a location of your choice. The certification tests real-world skills for both sys admins and more senior engineers at the command line and in configuration files.

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Why we use open source - Australia’s Immigration agency explains

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OSS

Why choose open source? “In some ways, [the open source software used by the agency] is effectively more capable” than commercial products, he said. “In terms of cost-effectiveness, [it] wins hands down: no license/maintenance fees, extensible architecture [and] global open source R&D.” The team uses an open source software package called ‘R’.

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Seven tips for reinvigorating your SMS campaign

Mobile marketing has come a long way in the last decade. Mobile marketing has gone from being a marketing channel to an entire industry encompassing dozens of marketing channels. While newer mobile technologies such as push notifications, QR codes, and geo-targeting have been getting all of the attention, it is still the humble text message that dominates the industry. While other channels can be beneficial, none can replace the value of a good SMS campaign. Seven tips If you’ve been neglecting your SMS campaign, here are seven tips to get it back on track: Encourage interaction. In the past, marketing efforts have always been focused on one-way communication. With mobile marketing, simply sending texts isn’t enough. In fact it comes across as spamming. A better option is to encourage interaction. For instance, customers who opt-in to receive your texts should be rewarded with a positive experience. Make sure messages are timely. You’ll find that certain messages are more effective at certain times. Sometimes it’s obvious but other times it won’t be. Texts sent by a restaurant about a lunch time special will be more effective when sent just before lunch time. Make sure you’re sending texts that are relevant, valuable, and timely. No marketing effort exists in a vacuum. Every business should be using at least a few different marketing channels. SMS is a great way to tie them all together because nearly everyone has a mobile device capable of texting. SMS marketing can link your email campaign to your social media campaign, and your social media campaign to your content marketing campaign and any other marketing channels you might have. Supplement your local advertisements. Despite the tremendous success of digital marketing strategies, traditional advertising channels such as radio and print ads can still be effective. In can be difficult to measure the effectiveness of these efforts however. You can use SMS to measure success by including a short code and keyword in your traditional advertising then watch how many opt-ins you get as a result. The trouble with sweepstakes has always been that people don’t want to take all the time to enter a sweepstakes they probably won’t win. SMS makes it extremely easy to enter sweepstakes. In fact, it’s one way to get people to opt-in. Customers can enter by simply texting a keyword to a short code. Provide in-store recommendations. A major fear about mobile is that it’s robbing businesses of their foot traffic. So much shopping is done online these days that many business owners worry they can’t compete. Mobile doesn’t have to work against in-store business however. In fact, mobile can improve it. For example, an auto parts store might allow customers looking for a specific part to text a keyword to a short code in order to get reply with the correct part. Use SMS to build loyalty. Typically, it’s 20% of your customers that are driving 80% of sales. SMS is a great way to get those kinds of customers. Make sure you’re doing everything you can to build a solid SMS marketing list. Mobile Technology News brought to you by businesstexter.com Source: streetfightmag.com/2014/08/18/7-strategies-for-better-text-message-marketing/

Linux kernel developer Dmitry Monakhov arrested for protesting Ukraine invasion

Linux kernel developer Dmitry Monakhov was detained for 15 days for disobeying a police officer on Saturday. The debacle came about when Monakhov decided to protest the recent invasion into Ukraine by Russian armed forces. This was not the first incident of aggression towards Monakhov. During a rally in July of 2013 he was reported to have been beaten in one of the police vans most likely for participating in expressing his discontent with Putin’s policies regarding human rights. According to Monakhov’s tweet the day before his most recent run in with the authorities, he announced, “I am a Russian. Not cattle. Not a killer. And it is not the occupier. I am ashamed that my president Putin. At 9.00 I go to Manezhku [Manezh Square] against the war.” after this tweet, pictures surfaced a day later of four Russian policeman arresting him. Read more

Thank You Akademy 2014 Sponsors

Akademy is a non-commercial event, free of charge for all who want to attend. Generous sponsor support helps make Akademy possible. Most of the Akademy budget goes towards travel support for KDE community members from all over the world, contributors who would not be able to attend the conference otherwise. The wide diversity of attendees is essential to the success of the annual in-person Akademy conference. Many thanks to Akademy 2014 sponsors. Read more

Linux @ About.com

During the past month I have been in discussions with a number of people at about.com. I have been provided with the opportunity of writing articles on the linux.about.com subsite and I am in full control of all the content that will appear on that site. It is early days and there is some old content on the site which is a bit out of date but I plan to make linux.about.com a great resource for everyone. Read more