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Linux and FOSS Events

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  • SCALE 14X Is One for the Record Books

    Whew. It had over 140 exhibitors, and over 185 sessions. It had just north of 3,600 people registered for the event. It had four days of peace, love and FOSS.

    That was SCALE 14X.

    But we’re getting ahead of Sunday’s story.

    After the cacophony of Saturday night’s Weakest Geek — Ruth Suehle won her third, with talk of a dynasty in the air for that particular game — and the fun and games of, well, Game Night, Sunday rolled into Pasadena on a more quiet, thoughtful note.

  • Lightning talk: Rewiring Generation Z

    Busting the myth that the generation after millennials are digital natives, that they are really good at computers. But they’re not. Charlie Reisinger tells us how closed software and hardware plays a role. And, how open source software and hardware is the answer.

Big Data and Server

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  • Google Wants Apache's Attention to Evolve Cloud Dataflow Tool

    The Apache Software Foundation, which incubates more than 350 open source projects and initiatives, has elevated a slew of big data and cloud computing projects to Top-Level status recently. With that designation, projects get more attention from the development community and other perks.

    Now, Google is making a big open source-focused move by offering its Dataflow technology to the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) as an incubator project. Cloudera, Data Artisans GmbH, PayPal Holdings and Talend are all backing the move.

  • New Outreachy interns, NFV deployment growth, and more OpenStack news

    Interested in keeping track of what is happening in the open source cloud? is your source for news in OpenStack, the open source cloud infrastructure project.

  • Forrester Names Top Five Hadoop Distributions

    Analysts at Forrester Research have been tracking the upward trajectory of the open source Hadoop big data project for years, and have now pronounced that the platform is “mandatory” for companies in pursuit of advanced analytics that leverage their data stores.

FOSS in Education

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  • Using Git in the classroom

    In my advanced programming classes I've discovered that middle school students are capable of far more complex operations than we often suspect. In many cases, they're wholly capable of using industry-standard tools to produce remarkable work.

  • Indiana University Joins Open Source Initiative

    The Open Source Initiative® (OSI) announced today the Affiliate Membership of Indiana University (IU), a long time champion for the use of open source software as a means for greater efficiency in higher education. The partnership highlights the OSI's recent efforts to extend support to higher education: helping colleges and universities across the globe realize the benefits of open source software, develpoment models and communities.

Leftovers: OSS

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  • Nginx Plus R8 Improves HTTP2, Adds OAuth2

    Nginx Inc is out this week with a new release of its flagship product platform, Nginx Plus R8. Among the highlights of the new web server platform are improved HTTP2 capabilities, OAuth authentication and HTML5 video caching features.

  • The final act for Mozilla's Persona

    Mozilla has announced that it will close down its identity service in November 2016. The browser maker stopped developing the Persona software in 2014, citing low adoption, but has maintained as a public service. With the announcement that the service will be discontinued, the question arose as to whether or not the software could survive as an independent, community-driven project. Questions also arose as to why Persona failed to take off, and whether Mozilla should have managed the project differently.

  • SUSE: OpenStack Cloud Demand High, But Hampered By Skills Shortage
  • IT Skills Shortage Slowing OpenStack Adoption

    The report, released today, looked at how large companies around the world are using cloud services, particularly OpenStack. This research polled 813 senior IT professionals in seven countries from companies with 250 or more employees. According to the report, 90 percent of large companies have implemented at least one private cloud solution to date.

  • Splice Machine Lands New Funding for NoSql-on-RDBMS Storage Platform
  • Rackspace Enhances MongoDB NoSQL DBaaS Features

    Rackspace is hoping to court more business users of its managed MongoDB NoSQL database service by expanding encryption, disaster recovery and other features on its Dedicated ObjectRocket for MongoDB offering.

  • GNU Parallel 20160122 ('Bowie') released

    GNU Parallel 20160122 ('Bowie') has been released. It is available for download at:

  • Denmark evaluates eHealth solutions

    Denmark’s Digital Welfare Strategy 2013 - 2020 is managed by the Danish government, Local Government Denmark (LGDK) and Danish Regions. The aim is to increase the uptake of eHealth solutions, and increase the use of technology to improve welfare.

  • Spain expands its electronic Judicial network
  • Latvia’s authorities meet open technologists

    The smart city activities of Riga and the intelligent transport systems devised by Latvia’s state road department are two of the many topics in next week’s “Open Technologies and Smart Solutions” conference. The meeting on 28 January is organised by Latvia’s Open Technology Association (LATA).

  • Open Space Agency Releases First Set of Files for the Open Source, 3D Printed Ultrascope Explorer Plus

    If there’s one field you wouldn’t expect to utilize crowdsourcing, it would be space exploration. However, that’s pretty much what the Open Space Agency (OSA) does. Founded by entrepreneur James Parr, OSA has created a network of amateur citizen scientists to supplement the work of the professional space agencies – or even create their own space programs – right from their backyards. At the heart of the collective is the Ultrascope, a robotic telescope, or automated robotic observatory, controlled by a smartphone.

  • Open source textbooks should be the future

    Like many businesses, there are economies of scale in publishing. A book that only sells 1000 copies a year will necessarily be expensive. But how many people are going to take a class in introductory calculus this year? What about psychology or health? They have to number in the tens of thousands, if not higher. There are also some fields where knowledge or convention changes so rapidly that books must be constantly updated. But the state of the art in introductory calculus hasn’t changed a whole lot since Isaac Newton. There’s no defensible reason that most books, especially ones for introductory classes, should be so expensive. It seems to me, that purchasing textbooks is a classic principal-agent problem. Professors select their classes’ book and students are essentially obliged to purchase them. Value for money is usually not a central concern, and this lets publishers set essentially whatever prices they so desire.

  • An open letter to GitHub, the new Brave browser, and more news

    Many developers working on open source projects choose to put their code on GitHub. By doing so, they use—and depend on—many of this platform's features, including support. According to The Register, more than 1,100 developers recently sent an open letter to GitHub about the lack of support. In response, GitLab, another code repository unrelated to GitHub, wrote a letter to developers about how they strive to help large and small open source projects use GitLab.


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  • EMC, Pivotal Launch New Program For Open-Source Development

    With an eye on the changing IT landscape, EMC and Pivotal launched a new program in Cambridge, Mass., focused on the development of open-source software and applications for the cloud.

    In Japanese, “dojo” means “the place of the way,” and EMC and Pivotal have named the center the Cloud Foundry dojo. Cloud Foundry is a Platform-as-a-Service offering centered around cloud-native application development.

  • Facebook open-sources Transform, a tool that cuts 360-degree video file size by 25%

    At its Video @Scale conference at company headquarters today, Facebook is announcing that it’s open-sourcing Transform, a piece of software it uses to stream users’ 360-degree videos in an efficient way.

Docker 'GUI' and Purchase

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Leftovers: OSS

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  • ONOS project updates open source SDN progress on 1-year anniversary
  • Plerd: A Dropbox-friendly Markdown blog platform

    Jason McIntosh had a problem: He'd gotten out of the habit of writing long-form blog posts. A decade before, he'd been a regular on LiveJournal, but that platform is getting a little long in the tooth, and he wanted something that was more in line with his current writing habits. As a fan of Markdown, he wanted something where he could just drop Markdown files in a spot, and the blog would be built from those.

  • Former Mozilla CEO reveals Brave, a browser that speeds up the Web by blocking all ads

    Brendan Eich, co-founder of Mozilla and for an 11-day stint, its CEO, yesterday announced a new browser called “Brave,” that blocks outside online ads and ad tracking.

    Brave, which was at version 0.7—denoting its under-construction and fit-for-developers-and-other-strong-hearts-only status—is for Windows and OS X on the desktop, iOS and Android on mobile. The browser does not have a final code launch date or one for a public preview. Users may sign up for notification when betas become available.

    In a post to the browser’s website, Eich, Brave’s CEO and president, touted the new browser’s model, which rests on blocking ads and all other tracking techniques used by websites to pinpoint their visitors and show them online advertisements.

  • WebGL Can Be Moved Off The Main Thread With Latest Firefox

    With Firefox 44 and newer it will be possible to move the WebGL rendering work off the main processing thread.

    With Firefox 44 when setting the gfx.offscreencanvas.enabled option, it's possible to move the WebGL rendering work off the main thread and to allow for the alternative thread(s) to change what is displayed to the user. "This API is the first that allows a thread other than the main thread to change what is displayed to the user. This allows rendering to progress no matter what is going on in the main thread...Developers will now be able to render to the screen without blocking on the main thread, thanks to the new OffscreenCanvas API. There’s still more work to do with getting requestAnimationFrame on Workers. I was able to port existing WebGL code to run in a worker in a few minutes. For comparison, see animation.html vs. animation-worker.html and worker.js."

  • Emacs 25.1 Will Have X Widgets Support
  • No single license to success

    OSI (Open Source Initiative) has tracked many licenses and approved some as well, maintaining a list of the nine most widely used and popular. Each license has its unique requirements and benefits from the reciprocity of GPL (GNU General Public License) to the permissive MIT. Each has its strong proponents and opponents. Some feel that without GPL’s compulsion human greed will end open source as we know it. Others feel that freedom is the key to success and such compulsion hinders creative use.

    The reality is that the strength of open source is in its diversity, including a diversity of licenses. No single license has been nor will be the pivotal point to open source success. License diversity is very evident from the data gathered by the Black Duck Knowledgebase. A quick view of the top 20 licenses used in open source projects today shows an even spread.

  • The Idealist: Aaron Swartz And The Rise Of Free Culture On The Internet

    Two weeks ago, our book of choice was a collection of Aaron Swartz's writings. And this week, it's a new book by Justin Peters not only about Swartz, but also about the rise of free culture online, putting Swartz's ideas and actions into context, called The Idealist: Aaron Swartz and the Rise of Free Culture on the Internet. I have to admit that I had no idea this book had even come out until I heard a wonderful interview with Peters over on On the Media (and, for what it's worth, in a separate podcast, OTM's Brooke Gladstone said that the interview was so good that they struggled to figure out how to edit it down -- so I wonder if they'll release an even longer version as a "podcast extra.")


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  • And So It Begins! Microsoft Asks Node.js to Allow ChakraCore (Edge) Alongside Google's V8 Engine

    Microsoft has submitted an official "pull request" (term used on GitHub for merging two pieces of code) to the Node.js project, through which it's asking the project's maintainers to enable support for ChakraCore, the JavaScript engine packed inside Microsoft's Edge browser.

  • EMC reinvigorated: Automation, open-source and versatile integration

    As the calendar rolls on into 2016, the buzz around the Dell-EMC merger has slightly diminished, but EMC’s activity behind the media relations has in no way cut its workload. With its presence in dozens of countries continuing to grow and a wide array of IT development opening up new avenues for it each day, the merger seems to have EMC’s activity reinvigorated.

  • Bloomberg releases API and online tools to boost open source FIGI [Ed: no source code AFAICT]

    Bloomberg is adding new features to increase the accessibility of its FIGI open source financial instrument identification system. The new online tools are intended to make it easier for instrument issuers to request identifiers and for exchanges, data providers, custodians and others to map other third-party identifiers to FIGI.

Why open source is the 'new normal' for big data

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As a provider of integration technologies for that platform, Talend has placed a significant bet of its own on Hadoop, Spark, and open source in general, so Tuchen's enthusiasm isn't exactly surprising. Talend offers products focused on big data, cloud and application integration, among others, and all are based on open-source software.

Still, Talend's bet seems to be paying off. The company will celebrate its 10th anniversary this year, and it claims big-name customers like GE, Citi, Lufthansa, Orange and Virgin Mobile. It's also in the middle of a major expansion. At the end of 2015, it was selling its products in five countries; by end of this year, it will be selling in 15, Tuchen said. Making that happen will mean hiring about 200 new people, he said, bringing the company's total head count to about 750.

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Linux and FOSS Events

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  • IoT Summit: An Opportunity to Learn What Open Source Can Offer IoT

    The Eclipse IoT community has grown significantly over the last 1-2 years. There are now 20+ Eclipse IoT projects building open source technology for IoT solutions. We are well on our way to providing the key building blocks developers need to build IoT solutions.

  • Drupal Higher-Ed Summit

    We are pleased to announce that we are bringing the First Drupal Higher-Ed Summit to Mumbai this 18th Feb 2016. The event focuses on the Drupal and Open Source in Education.

  • Meet Guix at FOSDEM!

    One week to FOSDEM! This year, there will be no less than six Guix-related talks. This and the fact that we are addressing different communities is exciting.

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Distributions News: Ubuntu, Manjaro, and Lakka

  • Ubuntu founder retakes the CEO throne, many employees gone
    Mark Shuttleworth, the founder of Canonincal has once again returned to his positition of CEO, as Jane Silber, the previous CEO now heads to the Board of Directors; and big changes happen to the staff lineup as a result. In a blog bost by Sibler, she says, “I originally agreed to be CEO for 5 years and we’ve extended my tenure as CEO by a couple of years already. We’ve been preparing for a transition for some time by strengthening the executive leadership team and maturing every aspect of the company, and earlier this year Mark and I decided that now is the time to effect this transition.”
  • [Video] Manjaro 17.0 KDE Edition - See What’s New
    Manjaro 17.0 KDE is the latest release of Manjaro Linux. This release brings new KDE Plasma 5.9.x as desktop environment include the most of KDE applications 16.12 and KDE Frameworks 5.32.
  • Make your own NES Classic Edition with Lakka 2.0 LibreELEC Linux distro and Raspberry Pi
    The NES Classic Edition is a very fun nostalgia-based gaming console. As someone who grew up with Nintendo, I knew I wanted the mini system as soon as it was announced. A family member was able to score me one on launch day, and I've been very happy with it. Unfortunately, other people have not been so lucky. Supply was very limited and it has since been discontinued. If you do not already have it, you are sort of out of luck without paying high prices on eBay or Craigslist. If you are only looking to replay the NES games of your youth, and you are OK with doing it in an unofficial way, emulation is another route. In fact, if you'd rather not play these games on your PC, you can instead use a Linux-based operating system and a Raspberry Pi (or other devices) hooked to a television. One such distro is Lakka, which just reached version 2.0. It is arguably better than an NES Classic Edition as it can also play games from other systems, such as SNES, Sega Genesis, Nintendo 64, PlayStation 1, and many more.

Software: Monitoring Tools, VSXu, and FSearch

today's howtos

Linux Mint's Plans

  • Some Of The Features Coming To Linux Mint's Cinnamon 3.4 Desktop
    In the latest monthly progress report on Linux Mint, some of the upcoming changes for the GNOME3-forked Cinnamon Desktop Environment were shared.
  • Monthly News – April 2017
    Many thanks to all the people who donated to us and who help to fund our project. Donations are down to about 60% of what they were last year, but they’re still quite high. In the first trimesters of 2015, 2016 and 2017 we respectively received $23k, $40k and $25k. Our development team has gotten bigger and our budget is being extended to include some administrators and designers. Other figures and metrics indicate we’re growing so this probably just reflects an exceptional year for donations in 2016.
  • Linux Mint Is Adopting LightDM as its Login Manager
    Linux Mint is adopting the LightDM display manager to handle and authenticate user sessions. Revealing plans in its latest monthly update, Mint says it will formally drop the MDM Display Manager (MDM) in favour of LightDM with Mint 18.2, release date for which is as-yet unknown. The popular Ubuntu-based Linux distribution mooted a possible switch earlier this year, noting that it had a key feature MDM lacks (guest sessions), and has become something of a standard across distributions.
  • Linux Mint 13 support ends, LMDE to get MATE 1.18 soon, big changes heading to Cinnamon
    The news from the Linux Mint team was quite interesting this week. First up, Linux Mint 13 has officially hit EOL (end of life), so you really do need to upgrade. LMDE (Linux Mint Debian Edition) is set to get the MATE desktop version 1.18 "this week" and they have ported mintMenu over to GTK3, since the rest of MATE is now using GTK3 too it makes sense.