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GNOME 3.18 Open-Source Linux Desktop Gets a Makeover

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The GNOME 3.18 Linux desktop, released Sept. 23, offers a milestone feature update. Code-named Gothenburg, the new open-source desktop environment benefits from 25,112 changes from 772 contributors. The GNOME 3.18 desktop includes improvements to the Files utility that make it easier for users to find, access and manage folders as well as files. There is now also a cleaner integration with Google Drive that can enable a user to directly access files from the cloud inside GNOME 3.18. Linux desktop users will also be able to choose a desktop setting that will automatically adjust screen brightness based on ambient lighting conditions. Keeping the hardware firmware on a Linux system updated is easier and more streamlined in GNOME 3.18, thanks to new support for the Linux vendor firmware update service. GNOME 3.18 includes updates to multiple GNOME applications, such as the Documents app, which benefits from a new user interface. The Calendar app has enhanced management features so users can more easily control information. The new release of Builder provides an improved developer experience with source code auto-completion for Python. Here's a look at key features of the GNOME 3.18.

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Bromium Makes Open Source Security Research Tool Available

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The open source community generally hasn’t produced many security analysis tools. For the most part, the tools required to do malware research are available only under a commercial license from security vendors that sell security software and hardware.

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FCC Rules Endanger Open Source Wireless Router Firmware

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Open source wireless router firmware may become tougher to install in the United States, if not illegal. That's if device manufacturers interpret new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules involving radio frequencies to mean that user-modified software should be banned.

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Exclusive Interview: Emby Founder Luke Pulverenti

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Before Emby, I had limited open source experience. I submitted small bug fixes here and there to different projects that I took an interest in. The Media Browser project was always fully open source, and with the re-branding to Emby we felt that was the best way for the project to continue moving forward.

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Hadoop Open Data Platform moves under Linux Foundation's wing

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Six months down the line from its creation, the Open Data Platform Hadoop initiative driven by Pivotal and Hortonworks has today unveiled new members, work on a core spec and reference implementation, plus a formal governance structure.

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5 key trends in open source

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Open source's technology leadership, along with an exponential increase in the sheer number of projects, leads to a final, somewhat ironic observation: It's still tough to be an independent vendor of open source software. Those few vendors who stick to the traditional pay-for-support-only model tend to struggle, whereas an increasing number of "commercial open source" companies offer multi-tiered subscriptions that recall the proprietary world. In the latter case, less capable community versions sometimes remind you of old-fashioned "free trial" software.

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‘German law mandates vendor-neutral ICT standards’

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Germany’s constitution makes the use of vendor-neutral ICT standards mandatory, according to the PhD thesis of Felix Greve, a German lawyer. The constitution demands minimum requirements for interoperability standards, Greve argues. The current lack of interoperability rules are a major barrier to the country’s uptake of free and open source software, in public administration and elsewhere.

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OSS Leftovers

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  • DreamFactory: Building a better backend for your apps

    A free, open source solution for connecting mobile, IoT, or Web apps to backend server data and services

  • Could VW scandal lead to open-source software for better automobile cybersecurity?

    Could fallout from Volkswagen’s cheating lead to vehicle manufacturers open-sourcing millions of lines of code for the sake of enhanced automobile cybersecurity?

  • Price – One Measure Of Lock-in

    For many, ignorance is the key lock-in. Folks born and raised as slaves may not appreciate there is any other life. Slaves may feel any competition to their slave-master is a threat to their way of life. Education is key. Students exposed to FLOSS at school will certainly know there is another way, a better way to do IT. Students I taught even knew how to install GNU/Linux and applications like LibreOffice. Today, there are many more retail shelves bearing GNU/Linux and LibreOffice than the bad old days. The stats show it. LibreOffice has over 100 million users. GNU/Linux as the classic desktop and Chrome OS are slowly but surely taking share in the world. Android/Linux is kicking butt.

  • Dropbox releases its chat app Zulip under an open-source license
  • Google Launches "Brotli" Compression Algorithm For The Web
  • Mycroft Aims to Be the First Truly Open AI That Belongs to Everyone

    Mycroft is a very successful project defined as an AI and home automation system, but its makers are hoping that it's going be a lot more than just that.

  • Mycroft AI Home Automation Needs a Mascot, Competition Organized

    The Mycroft AI home automation system has been gathering quite a following, especially after it completed a Kickstarter campaign. Now, its makers are looking to find a fitting mascot for the Mycroft.

  • My Dance Card for ‘All Things Open’

    Systemv Startup vs systemd: With all the continuing brouhaha surrounding systemd, this is a must on my list. From the abstract on this talk, it appears as if this will be a positive take on systemd — pragmatic, since it seems to be here to stay, like it or not — and will seek to explain not only how it works and how to configure it, but to explain why its development was deemed necessary. This one is being conducted by open source software and Linux advocate David Both, who’s byline has appeared on OS/2 Magazine, Linux Magazine, Linux Journal, and

  • FUDCon Córdoba 2015
  • FUDCon LATAM 2015 – Cordoba

    FUDCon LATAM 2015 was held in Córdoba Argentina, and hosted by Valentin Basel, Matias Maceira and Laura Fontanesi, and all the local volunteers that helped make the event could happen.

  • DjangoGirls workshop in Pune

    During FUDCon, I heard that later in the year we might get a Django Girls workshop in Pune. If you never heard about Django Girls before, here is a quote from the website:

  • Dronecode workshop to be held at LinuxCon/ELCE in Dublin

    In a nod to the proliferation of Linux in drones, the Dronecode Project will host a workshop in conjunction with LinuxCon and the ELC in Dublin next month.

  • How WebGL Works In Chromium

    If you've been curious how WebGL works in Chromium or other modern web browsers prior to hitting the graphics driver, here's a lengthy explanation.

  • Ossipee

    OpenStack is a big distributed system. FreeIPA is designed for security in distributed system. In order to develop and test each of them, separately or together, I need a distributed system. Virtualization has been a key technology for making this kind of work possible. OpenStack is great of managing virtualization. Added to that is the benefits found when one “Fly our own airplanes.” Thus, I am using OpenStack to develop OpenStack.

  • vertical text columns preview

    My small contribution to last night's LibreOffice conference hack-fest. In vertical text mode, the column view for pages now previews in the correct direction.

  • LibreOffice 5.0.2 Officially Released with a Ton of Fixes

    The Document Foundation just announced that LibreOffice 5.0.2, the second minor release for the 5.0 branch, has been released and is now available for download.

  • Making the case for Free Software at Universities

    Delivering this talk represented a challenge for me. My audience are freshman, that have been in college for all of three to four weeks. Your regular presentation is not going to work. My audience have left home, making new friends, and enjoying new freedoms, making adult decisions. For most freshman, their journey is just beginning and if I were to use my own experience, constantly evolving. Where you started out might be completely different and that could be said to continue even in your adult life. We are after all works in progress. The other challenge is that perception of Free Software / Open Source is applicable only to computer science. That is of course patently untrue, considering how this concept has now spread to so many other sectors. Creating something requires a wide range of skillsets and its just not about coding.

  • Irish Social Democrats: openness and transparency to reform political system

    The Irish Social Democrats have made open government one of their core issues. The party states that it wants to reform the political system, so that it serves the people rather than the political establishment. Developing a culture centred around openness and transparency is the first step in this process.

  • Google's Brotli compression algorithm, C++ Core Guidelines, and more news

OSS Leftovers

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Building enterprise data applications with open source components

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I first found myself having to learn Scala when I started using Spark (version 0.5). Prior to Spark, I’d peruse books on Scala but just never found an excuse to delve into it. In the early days of Spark, Scala was a necessity — I quickly came to appreciate it and have continued to use it enthusiastically.

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Also: Survey shows huge popularity spike for Apache Spark

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More in Tux Machines

KNOPPIX 7.7.1 Distro Officially Released with Debian Goodies, Linux Kernel 4.7.9

Believe it or not, Klaus Knopper is still doing his thing with the KNOPPIX GNU/Linux distribution, which was just updated to version 7.7.1 to offer users the latest open source software and technologies. Read more

CentOS 6 Linux Servers Receive Important Kernel Security Patch, Update Now

We reported a couple of days ago that Johnny Hughes from the CentOS Linux team published an important kernel security advisory for users of the CentOS 7 operating system. Read more

Games for GNU/Linux

  • Why GNU/Linux ports can be less performant, a more in-depth answer
    When it comes to data handling, or rather data manipulation, different APIs can perform it in different ways. In one, you might simply be able to modify some memory and all is ok. In another, you might have to point to a copy and say "use that when you can instead and free the original then". This is not a one way is better than the other discussion - it's important only that they require different methods of handling it. Actually, OpenGL can have a lot of different methods, and knowing the "best" way for a particular scenario takes some experience to get right. When dealing with porting a game across though, there may not be a lot of options: the engine does things a certain way, so that way has to be faked if there's no exact translation. Guess what? That can affect OpenGL state, and require re-validation of an entire rendering pipeline, stalling command submission to the GPU, a.k.a less performance than the original game. It's again not really feasible to rip apart an entire game engine and redesign it just for that: take the performance hit and carry on. Note that some decisions are based around _porting_ a game. If one could design from the ground up with OpenGL, then OpenGL would likely give better performance...but it might also be more difficult to develop and test for. So there's a bit of a trade-off there, and most developers are probably going to be concerned with getting it running on Windows first, GNU/Linux second. This includes engine developers.
  • Why Linux games often perform worse than on Windows
    Drivers on Windows are tweaked rather often for specific games. You often see a "Game Ready" (or whatever term they use now) driver from Nvidia and AMD where they often state "increased performance in x game by x%". This happens for most major game releases on Windows. Nvidia and AMD have teams of people to specifically tweak the drivers for games on Windows. Looking at Nvidia specifically, in the last three months they have released six new drivers to improve performance in specific games.
  • Thoughts on 'Stellaris' with the 'Leviathans Story Pack' and latest patch, a better game that still needs work
  • Linux community has been sending their love to Feral Interactive & Aspyr Media
    This is awesome to see, people in the community have sent both Feral Interactive & Aspyr Media some little care packages full of treats. Since Aspyr Media have yet to bring us the new Civilization game, it looks like Linux users have been guilt-tripping the porters into speeding up, or just sending them into a sugar coma.
  • Feral Interactive's Linux ports may come with Vulkan sooner than we thought
  • Using Nvidia's NVENC with OBS Studio makes Linux game recording really great
    I had been meaning to try out Nvidia's NVENC for a while, but I never really bothered as I didn't think it would make such a drastic difference in recording gaming videos, but wow does it ever! I was trying to record a game recently and all other methods I tried made the game performance utterly dive, making it impossible to record it. So I asked for advice and eventually came to this way.

Leftovers: Software

  • DocKnot 1.00
    I'm a bit of a perfectionist about package documentation, and I'm also a huge fan of consistency. As I've slowly accumulated more open source software packages (alas, fewer new ones these days since I have less day-job time to work on them), I've developed a standard format for package documentation files, particularly the README in the package and the web pages I publish. I've iterated on these, tweaking them and messing with them, trying to incorporate all my accumulated wisdom about what information people need.
  • Shotwell moving along
    A new feature that was included is a contrast slider in the enhancement tool, moving on with integrating patches hanging around on Bugzilla for quite some time.
  • GObject and SVG
    GSVG is a project to provide a GObject API, using Vala. It has almost all, with some complementary, interfaces from W3C SVG 1.1 specification. GSVG is LGPL library. It will use GXml as XML engine. SVG 1.1 DOM interfaces relays on W3C DOM, then using GXml is a natural choice. SVG is XML and its DOM interfaces, requires to use Object’s properties and be able to add child DOM Elements; then, we need a new set of classes.
  • LibreOffice 5.1.6 Office Suite Released for Enterprise Deployments with 68 Fixes
    Today, October 27, 2016, we've been informed by The Document Foundation about the general availability of the sixth maintenance update to the LibreOffice 5.1 open-source and cross-platform office suite. You're reading that right, LibreOffice 5.1 got a new update not the current stable LibreOffice 5.2 branch, as The Document Foundation is known to maintain at least to versions of its popular office suite, one that is very well tested and can be used for enterprise deployments and another one that offers the latest technologies.