Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish


Albania's Capital, Tirana, Moves to Open Source Software by Adopting LibreOffice

Filed under

Being the capital city, Tirana is the most populous city in Albania, known for its colorful, post-Communist buildings and Soviet-era architecture. In an attempt to adopt the Open Source way to save more money, Tirana has recently attempted to implement various free and open source solutions for their public IT infrastructure, by migrating to projects like Nextcloud and LibreOffice.

"Ermir Puka, the head of the ICT Department, believes that despite the resistance to change and the other big challenges facing the migration, using free and open source software and platforms like LibreOffice – supporting open standards – will guide the IT infrastructure of the municipality in the best interest of the citizens of Tirana," writes The Document Foundation's Italo Vignoli.

Read more

SA govt's DPTI shifts to open source, cloud hosted databases

Filed under

South Australia’s Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure is embracing open source, cloud-hosted database infrastructure in a bid to oust expensive proprietary systems from its environment.

It's the latest move in what has become an extensive migration into public cloud to cut the cost of running geospatial information and traffic management systems in the state.

The geospatial data systems fall under the auspices of Location SA, for which the department - known as DPTI - is the lead technical agency.

“Location SA is a group of government agencies that willingly and collaboratively want to adopt the services that we provide,” DPTI business and location services manager Greg van Gaans told the recent AWS public sector summit in Canberra.

Read more

Getting started with Jenkins X

Filed under

Jenkins X is an open source system that offers software developers continuous integration, automated testing, and continuous delivery, known as CI/CD, in Kubernetes. Jenkins X-managed projects get a complete CI/CD process with a Jenkins pipeline that builds and packages project code for deployment to Kubernetes and access to pipelines for promoting projects to staging and production environments.

Developers are already benefiting from running "classic" open source Jenkins and CloudBees Jenkins on Kubernetes, thanks in part to the Jenkins Kubernetes plugin, which allows you to dynamically spin-up Kubernetes pods to run Jenkins build agents. Jenkins X adds what's missing from Jenkins: comprehensive support for continuous delivery and managing the promotion of projects to preview, staging, and production environments running in Kubernetes.

Read more

A Closer Look at Voice-Assisted Speakers

Filed under

U.S. consumers are expected to drop a bundle this Black Friday on smart speakers and home hubs. A Nov. 15 Canalys report estimates that shipments of voice-assisted speakers grew 137 percent in Q3 2018 year-to-year and are on the way to 75 million-unit sales in 2018. At the recent Embedded Linux Conference and Open IoT Summit in Edinburgh, embedded Linux developer and Raspberry Pi HAT creator Leon Anavi of the Konsulko Group reported on the latest smart speaker trends.

As Anavi noted in his “Comparison of Voice Assistant SDKs for Embedded Linux Devices” talk, conversing with computers became a staple of science fiction over half a century ago. Voice technology is interesting “because it combines AI, big data, IoT, and application development,” said Anavi.

In Q3 2017, Amazon and Google owned the industry with 74.7 percent and 24.6 percent, respectively, said Canalys. A year later, the percentages were down to 31.9 and 29.8. China-based Alibaba and Xiaomi almost equally split another 21.8 percent share, followed by 17.4 percent for “others,” which mostly use Amazon Alexis, and increasingly, Google Assistant.

Despite the success of the mostly Linux-driven smart speaker market, Linux application developers have not jumped into voice app development in the numbers one might expect. In part, this is due to reservations about Google and Amazon privacy safeguards, as well as the proprietary nature of the hardware and cloud software.

Read more

OSS: Wendy's, BERT, RISC OS, FUD and Sony's Open Devices Program

Filed under
  • Where's the beef? Wendy's chooses an open source WCMS sells 1.5 million burgers a day via its website and app. At that scale, when it came time to update the back-end software supporting it, choosing a WCMS wasn't as simple as running the Frosty machine.

    Earlier this year, the fast-food giant sought a simpler design but far more complex data tracking for personalization, said Michael Mancuso, the company's head of digital analytics who also heads up In this Pipeline podcast episode, he discusses the process for choosing a WCMS.

    Spoiler alert: Wendy's didn't weigh technology analyst reports that rank the market leaders. Acquia, the open source WCMS platform vendor, eventually beat out 24 other prospective vendors. (The vendor actually ranks well in such industry reports.)

  • Google Open-Sources BERT: A Natural Language Processing Training Technique

    In a recent blog post, Google announced they have open-sourced BERT, their state-of-the-art training technique for natural language processing (NLP) applications. Google has decided to do this, in part, due to a lack of public data sets that are available to developers. BERT also includes a new bidirectional technique which improves its effectiveness in NLP. To reduce the amount of time required for developers and researchers to train their NLP models, Google has made optimizations in Cloud Tensor Processing Units (TPUs) which reduces the amount of time it takes to train a model to 30 minutes vs a few hours using a single GPU.


    In addition to new techniques included in BERT, Google has made enhancements to Cloud TPUs which allow developers and researchers to quickly experiment, debug and tweak models. These investments allowed Google to exceed the capabilities of existing pre-training models.

  • ARM’s original operating system goes open source

    In today’s increasingly digital world, learning to code has become an integral part of STEM curriculums. Schools are using Raspberry Pi and other ARM-based hardware as a low-cost means of introducing students to coding.

    Following the recent news that RISC OS, the original ARM operating system, is going open source, TechRadar Pro sat down with the Director of RISC OS Developments, Richard Brown to learn more about how the operating system is being used in schools and other hardware projects.

  • Will Cloud Computing Kill Open Source Development? [Ed: Stupid headline, stupid article. There is no such thing as cloud, it's just servers and most of these run FOSS, so they're not competition to or incompatible with FOSS. The article is actually about a company going proprietary.]

    Redis changed the licensing of some of their enterprise modules to be licensed under the Apache 2.0+ Common Clause. These modules cannot be used as stand-alone commercial SAAS. This was specifically aimed at cloud providers.

    The surrounding controversy has raised an issue that has been lurking in the open source community for a while. The best case for open source has been with software infrastructure, rather than software application projects. If cloud computing companies become the infrastructure providers for software, their market control might allow them to take over open-source projects, and sell those software services at a lower price point than companies who market open source services.

    If this scenario comes to pass, is there any future for open source companies?

  • Open Source at 20: What's Next? [Ed: FOSS is 35 years old, not 20. Stop setting to clock to when Free software came under attack.]

    As the open source movement reaches the two-decade milestone, thoughts turn to the movement's achievements and future goals.

    The Open Source Initiative (OSI) is celebrating its 20th Anniversary in 2018. To mark the occasion, cloud infrastructure provider DigitalOcean surveyed over 4,300 developers on the movement's health, as well as on how enterprises and employees are approaching and using open source technologies.


    Open source is continuing to move toward increased corporate stewardship, advised Chris Kelly, director of engineering marketing and engagement at Salesforce. "We’ll continue to see more production-critical projects from companies being released as open source as a way to build industry consensus, accelerate hiring and [create] a gateway to their products," he predicted.

  • Sony has added the Xperia XZ2 and XZ3 to its Open Devices program
  • Sony's Open Devices program now supports the Xperia XZ2 and XZ3

The best holiday gifts for open source enthusiasts

Filed under

Even the most hard-core open source users must spend their hard-earned dukets on computers, internet connectivity, and (on the occasion) software. So you don't have to worry about being relegated to only giving them gifts released under the GPL (wrapping said gifts in pages torn from The Cathedral And The Bazaar).

But what gifts should you give? Here are a few ideas that cover a wide spectrum of taste and price range for open source enthusiasts.

Read more

10 ways to give thanks to open source and free software maintainers

Filed under

Every day, I use high-quality software that is developed and maintained by people who do not ask for payment, who respect my freedoms, and who are generous with their time and energy.

In this season of giving thanks, I encourage those of you who also use and appreciate the work of open source and free software maintainers to express your gratitude. Here are ten ways to do that...

Read more

OSS Funding: Buying Companies, MicroBlocks Joins Conservancy, and Conservancy Asking for Money

Filed under
  • Software Composition Analysis Startups: Investors Are Looking For These Three Qualities

    It is clear that enterprises and investors are looking for ways to be heavily integrated into the open-source ecosystem because that is where the developers are. It is up to you to show that your company can appeal to the developers who use open source as the core of their work, gaining significant adoption that can turn into sizable market share. Investors want to know that they are getting into business with a company who has the pulse of the open-source community, providing services that will make working with open-source components easier.

  • MicroBlocks Joins Conservancy

    We're proud to announce that we're bringing MicroBlocks into the Conservancy as our newest member project. MicroBlocks provides a quick way for new programmers to jump right in using "blocks" to make toys or tools. People have been proclaiming that IoT is the future for almost a decade, so we're very pleased to be able to support a human-friendly project that makes it really easy to get started building embedded stuff. Curious? Check out a few of the neat things people have already built with MicroBlocks.

    MicroBlocks is the next in a long line of open projects for beginners or "casual programmers" lead by John Maloney, one of the creators of Squeak (also a Conservancy project!) and a longtime Scratch contributor. MicroBlocks is a new programming language that runs right inside microcontroller boards such as the micro:bit, the NodeMCU and many Arduino boards. The versatility and interactivity of MicroBlocks helps users build their own custom tools for everything from wearables to model rockets or custom measuring devices and funky synthesizers.

  • $90K Year-end Match to Fund an Ambitious Year for Conservancy

How machine learning is supercharging content management

Filed under

Machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) are some of the hottest buzzwords around, especially in the open source community. It seems that every month brings a new machine learning system, each focused on a different application.

The good news is that since academics developed many of these frameworks, they are often open source by default. Even Google's own neural network software library, TensorFlow, is (at least for now) open source.

The bad news is that many of these frameworks are designed for high-end applications and require a lot of experience to deploy effectively. If you want to spend years building image recognition software from scratch, for instance, and want to stick to open source software, there are plenty of options available. Good luck with that PhD.

For the rest of us, taking advantage of recent advances in machine learning and AI requires that they come in an easy-to-use package and have real-world applications.

Luckily, there is at least one area where open source machine learning and AI systems are making a real impact: content management systems (CMSes), the software that sits behind websites and manages the content on them.

Read more

OSS Leftovers

Filed under
  • 5 Best Chrome Extensions For Reading News In 2019

    The internet is the major source of news for many of us, and we spend a lot of time reading articles to stay updated. There are many news sources available that offer various categories of news. However, it is a time-consuming task to open each of those websites.

  • 6 Essential Tips for Safe Online Shopping

    The turkey sandwiches are in the fridge, and you didn’t argue with your uncle. It’s time to knock out that gift list, and if you’re like millions of Americans, you’re probably shopping online.

  • Elementary Bugs

    Mozilla is a well-known open-source organization, and thus draws a lot of interested contributors. But Mozilla is huge, and even the more limited scope of Firefox development is a wilderness to a newcomer. We have developed various tools to address this, one of which was an Outreachy project by Fienny Angelina called Codetribute.

    The site aggregates bugs that experienced developers have identified as good for new contributors (“good first bugs”, although often they are features or tasks) across Bugzilla and Github. It’s useful both for self-motivated contributors and for those looking for starting point for a deeper engagement with Mozilla (an internship or even a full-time job).

    However, it’s been tricky to help developers identify good-first-bugs.

  • Open Source Cloudify 4.5 Extends its Cloud Native Orchestration to the Network - from Core to Edge [Ed: Another example of proprietary and "Community" edition for openwashing purposes]
  • Why some open-source companies are considering a more closed approach

    “I would put it in a very blunt way: for many years we were suckers, and let them take what we developed and make tons of money on this.”

    Redis Labs CEO Ofer Bengal doesn’t mince words. His company, known for its open-source in-memory database, has been around for eight years, an eternity in the fast-changing world of modern enterprise software.

    Cloud computing was very much underway in 2011, but it was still a tool for early adopters or startups that couldn’t afford to bet millions on servers to incubate a promising but unproven idea. Most established companies were still building their own tech infrastructure the old-fashioned way, but they were increasingly realizing that open-source software would allow them to build that infrastructure with open-source components in ways that were much more flexible and cheaper than proprietary packages from traditional enterprise software companies.

  • Rob Port: Audit: North Dakota’s use of open source textbooks has saved North Dakota students a lot of money

    For generations now the cost of higher education has been out of control. This isn’t exactly news to you, I’m sure, but it may surprise you to know that the cost of textbooks has grown even faster than the rapid increase in tuition costs.

  • Envoy and gRPC-Web: a fresh new alternative to REST

    Personally, I’d been intrigued by gRPC-Web since I first read about it in a blog post on the Improbable engineering blog. I’ve always loved gRPC’s performance, scalability, and IDL-driven approach to service interaction and have longed for a way to eliminate REST from the service path if possible. I’m excited that gRPC-Web is ready for prime time because I think it opens up some extremely promising horizons in web development.

  • 2018 LLVM Developers' Meeting Videos Now Online

    For those wishing to learn more about the LLVM compiler stack and open-source compiler toolchains in general, the videos from October's LLVM Developers' Meeting 2018 in San Jose are now online.

  • OpenBSD in Stereo with Linux VFIO

    Now, after some extensive reverse engineering and debugging with the help of VFIO on Linux, I finally have audio playing out of both speakers on OpenBSD.

  • RcppMsgPack 0.2.3

    Another maintenance release of RcppMsgPack got onto CRAN today. Two new helper functions were added and not unlike the previous 0.2.2 release in, some additional changes are internal and should allow compilation on all CRAN systems.

    MessagePack itself is an efficient binary serialization format. It lets you exchange data among multiple languages like JSON. But it is faster and smaller. Small integers are encoded into a single byte, and typical short strings require only one extra byte in addition to the strings themselves. RcppMsgPack brings both the C++ headers of MessagePack as well as clever code (in both R and C++) Travers wrote to access MsgPack-encoded objects directly from R.

Syndicate content

More in Tux Machines

Schedule a visit with the Emacs psychiatrist

Welcome to another day of the 24-day-long Linux command-line toys advent calendar. If this is your first visit to the series, you might be asking yourself what a command-line toy even is. We’re figuring that out as we go, but generally, it could be a game, or any simple diversion that helps you have fun at the terminal. Some of you will have seen various selections from our calendar before, but we hope there’s at least one new thing for everyone. Today's selection is a hidden gem inside of Emacs: Eliza, the Rogerian psychotherapist, a terminal toy ready to listen to everything you have to say. Read more

Download User Guide Books of All Ubuntu Flavors

This is a compilation of download information of user guide books of Ubuntu and the 5 Official Flavors (Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, and Ubuntu Studio). You can find either complete user guides (even for server edition), installation guide, or tutorials compilation; either in PDF or HTML format; plus where to purchase two official ebooks of Ubuntu MATE. On the end of this tutorial, I included how to download the HTML-only documentation so you can read it completely offline. I hope you will find all of books useful and you can print them out yourself. Get the books, print them, share with your friends, read and learn Ubuntu All Flavors. Read more

Games: Desert Child, KKnD, Twice Circled

  • Desert Child Now Available on Linux, PC, and Mac OS
    Akupara Games is here with an all-new game that blends a mix of hoverbikes with shooting and racing alongside high-resolution pixel art. It's odd to see a game try so many different genres, but Desert Child does that and more. Adventure games are also covered, as you have to go from place to place and explore the world. Your overall goal is to leave Earth before it blows up, and winning the Grand Prix allows you to go to Mars and escape the planet.
  • The KKnD remake using the OpenRA engine has a first release out
    KKnD, the classic strategy game is being revived and the new open source project has the first release out. I was going to write this up last night, but it seems I jumped the gun a bit before they had all the bits in place. Nice to see such quick and polite communication from their team though. Unlike Red Alert and the other titles served by OpenRA, KKnD and KKnD 2 were not made freeware. You will still need the games for the full experience. However, this remake will download the demo files for you to get you going.
  • The lovely aquarium building game Megaquarium just had a big update
    Twice Circled are adding in plenty of new features to Megaquarium as promised, with a major update now available.

Debian Installer Buster Alpha 4 release

The Debian Installer team[1] is pleased to announce the fourth alpha release of the installer for Debian 10 "Buster". Foreword ======== I'd like to start by thanking Christian Perrier, who spent many years working on Debian Installer, especially on internationalization (i18n) and localization (l10n) topics. One might remember graphs and blog posts on Planet Debian with statistics; keeping track of those numbers could look like a pure mathematical topic, but having uptodate translations is a key part of having a Debian Installer that is accessible for most users. Thank you so much, Christian! Read more Also: Debian Installer Buster Alpha 4 Released