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today's leftovers

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  • Linux 2016 – The Year of the Hard Shift

    I’m just going to come out and say it. This thing is being rushed because my thoughts are not exactly careening from stream-to-stream. I am so burned out waiting for the moment when Linux finally catches up with the rest of the tech industry.

    I know there are a lot of you out there right now, don’t deny it, who are saying “Well, welcome to Linux! You’ve finally got your citizenship!” That’s not good enough, nor will it ever be good enough for me–not even close. I apologize right away if it offends anyone’s sensibilities. But there are days when I feel like I’m the only one who sees what’s happening.

  • Lenovo's funky Yoga Book laptop will get a Chrome OS option next year

    The Yoga Book is definitely one of the most interesting and divisive laptop designs to come out in a while - users either love or hate its touchscreen/keyboard deck hook. To a digital artist its integrated "Create Pad" is a godsend, but a mechanical keyboard fan probably sees its integrated haptic key layout as sacrilege. Either way, you'll soon have more options if you want to check out that unique hardware: a Lenovo executive told a Tom's guide reporter that the Yoga Book would be sold in a Chrome OS model in 2017.

  • Manjaro Deepin 16.10.3 and various other updates comes in
  • New Slackware-current Live ISOs with latest Plasma

    I am ready with a new batch of packages for Plasma 5 and to showcase that in a Slackware Live Edition, I stamped a new version on ‘liveslak‘.
    Version 1.1.5 is ready, again containing only minor tweaks compared to the previous release. I made a set of ISO images for several variants of the 64bit and 32bit versions of Slackware Live Edition based on liveslak 1.1.5 and using Slackware-current dated “Thu Dec 1 08:49:20 UTC 2016“. These ISO images have been uploaded and are available on the primary server ‘bear‘. You will find ISO images for a full Slackware, Plasma5, MATE and Cinnamon (yes, I did one this time!) variants and the 700MB small XFCE variant.

  • Adobe unifies its Flash plugin releases with version 24

    Adobe has silently been developing an updated version of their NPAPI based Linux Flash Player plugin for a while.

    Remember, NPAPI is the plugin protocol used in Mozilla compatible browsers, for which Adobe was supposedly not releasing any new developments. Instead they only incorporated security fixes to their stone-age version 11 of the Linux player during the past years.

  • Freexian’s report about Debian Long Term Support, November 2016

    Like each month, here comes a report about the work of paid contributors to Debian LTS.

  • Christmas-music-carousel-snap - with the Raspberry PiGlow!

    As part of our festive competition to build a seasonal snap on your RaspberryPi...we made an attempt ourselves!

today's leftovers

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today's leftovers

Filed under
Misc
  • Linux Academy Survey Shows Vast Skills-Gap in Cloud Technology Talent and Experience
  • Lumina Desktop moved to Sparky repos

    The latest version of Lumina Desktop 1.1.0 patch1 is available straight from Sparky repos.

  • Proxmox Virtual Environment 4.4 Linux OS Released with New Ceph Dashboard, More

    Proxmox Server Solutions GmbH, the company behind the Debian-based Proxmox Virtual Environment and Proxmox Mail Gateway products, announced the release of the Proxmox VE 4.4 operating system.

  • Debian-Based antiX MX-16 "Metamorphosis" Released, Ships Without Systemd

    The development team behind the Debian-based antiX MX GNU/Linux distribution was pleased to announce the final release of antiX MX-16 "Metamorphosis."

    Based on the latest stable Debian release, namely Debian GNU/Linux 8.6 "Jessie," the antiX MX-16 operating system is a major release that comes approximately one year after the previous version, antiX MX-15, and promises to offer users a collection of the latest and greatest GNU/Linux technologies and Open Source software applications.

  • Dedoimedo interviews: MX Linux team

    Behold, for this has never been done before on Dedoimedo. Several readers suggested that I perhaps expand my critique of all things open-source into a more personal dimension. Interviews, babe, interviews. I listened, I agreed, and here we are!

    This is the first such interview attempt on Dedoimedo. First of many to come. Today, we will be conducting a written Q&A session with a member of the MX Linux team. Now, for those wondering who or what this distribution slash project might be, quote: "MX Linux is a cooperative venture between the antiX and former MEPIS communities, using the best tools and talents from each distro. It is a midweight OS designed to combine an elegant and efficient desktop with simple configuration, high stability, solid performance and medium-sized footprint." MX Linux caught the attention and high praise of Dedoimedo recently, with a very solid MX-15 release, and I had recently titled it as one of the top Xfce releases of 2016. Let us expand, shall we.

  • With Dataplicity, Get Access to Your Raspberry Pi on the Go

    As we've noted here before, when it comes to top open source stories of the past couple of years, it's clear that one of the biggest is the proliferation of tiny, inexpensive Linux-based computers at some of the smallest form factors ever seen. The diminutive, credit card-sized Raspberry Pi, which has been priced at only $25 and $35, has grabbed most of the headlines in this space, and came out recently in a new version with WiFi and many other new capabilities, including integration with Android. The Pi is taking on Docker smarts. If you want to work with Docker on your Raspberry Pi, all you need is Hypriot OS, a new Debian derivative designed to run Docker on the Pi.

  • Smartphone App: Photofunia coming to Tizen Store later this Month

today's leftovers

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Misc

today's leftovers

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Misc
  • These Were The Best Linux App & Distro Releases in 2016

    As 2016 dims into embers, it’s take to take a misty-eyed look back over the past twelve months, and at some the best Linux releases that wowed, wooed and otherwise w-worded us.

    In 2016 there were a stack of apps and distribution updates, upgrades and releases. Some well known favourites improved, some new ones appeared in the wild, while others introduced us to new or better ways of doing things we regularly do.

  • The Linux Setup - Piers Anthony, Author

    I use Linux because I didn’t like being governed by Microsoft.

  • An Ode to Linux Desktop Users Everywhere

    Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels. The package makers, the man page writers. The rounded windows in Qt mixed with the less rounded windows of GTK. The ones who literally see things differently because of missing proprietary fonts.

  • My search for a MacBook Pro alternative

    Based on more than 100 user reviews, I could create a shortlist of 8 laptops that seemed to be solid alternatives. Based on my four requirements (Linux compatibility was a decisive factor), this list got narrowed down even further. Only three laptops survived!

    These 3 Linux ready models seems to have comparable workmanship and build quality as the MacBook Pro. They come with latest gen and upgradeable hardware and most of their users swear by them.

  • Raspberry based Private Cloud?

    Here is something that might be a little outdated already, but I hope it still adds some interesting thoughts. The rainy Sunday afternoon today finally gives the opportunity to write this little blog.

  • How To Lie With Graphics: Different Graphics from the Same Data to tell Smartphone Migration Story

    I'm nearly done with the 2016 edition to my mobile handset industry volume that comes out every two years, the TomiAhonen Phone Book. And I was doing an update to one of the graphics and played around with some different ways to tell the same story. Please note, that all these graphics related to the same data set, I am not talking about current market share sales (that is the easy number you can get most anywhere). This is the far harder number to find, the actual installed base of phones in use, accounting for the different ages of phones still being used, and in many countries the strong resale market where old Nokias, iPhones and Galaxies go to find a second or third pocket to live in. This is the type of data my Phone Book is full of, data you always wanted but can't find in most public sources. All these graphics on this blog posting related to one data set, and all of it is not current sales of smartphones vs dumbphones ('featurephones') but rather, it is the full global installed base of handsets, smart or dumb.

today's leftovers

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  • 5 Things To Expect From The World Of Linux In 2017

    Linux has come out of oblivion to become a mainstream technology today - making its presence felt in the world of marketing, finance, operations and in every other domain. The New Year 2017, should hold promise for Linux, as Bryan Lunduke said recently. There will be some crucial outcomes of the Linux Foundation-Microsoft partnership as well, which made waves in the tech circles the world over. From the predictions available, there will be increased focus on some areas, while the others will witness a lot of trial and error, and even predictive failure, for that matter.

  • Over 1,000 games have released on Steam this year with Linux support

    Don't adjust your screens, as you did read that correctly. Over 1,000 games have released on Steam this year alone with Linux support.

    I've been slowly writing up an end of year roundup and something I wanted to know was how well we have done this year in terms of actual releases.

    It took a while to add it all up, as some games show up in the list with a date that’s passed and they aren’t actually released. I had to be pretty careful and do it slowly to make sure it's right.

  • KDE Neon User LTS Edition Released, Powered By Plasma 5.8

    Jonathan Riddell has announced the KDE Neon User LTS Edition availability. Rather than tracking the bleeding-edge KDE developments as KDE Neon traditionally does, the User LTS Edition tracks Plasma 5.8 LTS.

  • KDE e.V. Community Report - 2nd Half of 2015

    The KDE e.V. community report for the second half of 2015 is now available. It presents a survey of all the activities and events carried out, supported, and funded by KDE e.V. in that period, as well as the reporting of major conferences that KDE has been involved in.

  • Best distro of 2016 poll

    Time for you to express yourselves. It's been another year full of ups and downs, good distros and bad distros. Or if I may borrow a quote from a movie, Aladeen distros and Aladeen distros. Indeed.

    The rules are very similar to what we did in years gone past. I will conduct my own annual contest best thingie wossname, with a sprinkling of KDE, Xfce and other desktops, having their separate forays. But then, I will incorporate your ideas and thoughts into the final verdict, much like the 2015 best distro nomination. Let us.

today's leftovers

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  • 1 Step Forward, 2 Steps Back: EU Copyright Reform

    Today on the podcast we’re looking at the copyright reform that is being proposed by the EU commission. Of course even as I say those words, I can hear some of you clicking off, or saving this for later even if later will never come. Copyright is one of those things – it hits us in so many ways, everyday, yet often the discussions and specifics cause us to get bored or lost… amazingly something that matters so much is really hard to get excited about. But we’re daring to tackle the important on this program, with help from three voices – Polina Malaja of the Free Software Foundation Europe, Dimitar Dimitrov of the Free Knowledge Advocacy Group EU, and Julia Reda, German Member of the European Parliament.

  • xinput is not a configuration UI
  • KDE Frameworks 5 Now Available as a Snap for Snapping KDE Apps on Ubuntu Linux

    Long-time KDE Community developer Harald Sitter has been working lately on creating a sharable KDE Frameworks Snap that would make snapping of KDE applications for Ubuntu and other GNU/Linux distros a lot easier and fun.

    In a recent blog post, the developer explains how he managed to bundle KDE apps as Snaps while trying to make them as smaller as possible. The size of the downloadable binary Snap and Flatpak packages, as well as AppImage or other similar technology, always appeared to have been an issue for most users.

    In order for Snaps and Flatpaks to be adopted by the mass, they need to be smaller, and thanks to the hard work of Harald Sitter, there's now a Snap version of the KDE Frameworks 5 collection of add-on libraries for Qt 5, which KDE developers are using to develop KDE applications for the Plasma 5 desktop environment.

  • “Just 1 Link” To Hack North Korea’s “Terrible” Linux Distro Red Star 3

    North Korea built its own Linux distro which was dubbed as the worst Linux distro ever. A security firm known as Hacker House has found a vulnerability that can compromise the Red Star OS 3 using a malicious link.

  • Outreachy Starts Today!

    This blog should now be showing up on various planets (Fedora, Outreachy, Fedora Design), which means I need to do an introduction.

    Hi, I’m Suzanne. I’ve been working on getting myself into User Experience (UX) for about a year now, although I’ve been interested in smoothing the interface between people and technology for longer than that. Most recently, I spent a few years in a PhD program working with robots and investigating the kind of gestures that robots will most need to understand when conversing with people. When that turned out to not be a good program for me, I figured out that UX was the most interesting and relevant path forward.

  • Canonical to sue European cloud provider over unofficial Ubuntu images

    Ubuntu Linux producer Canonical plans to sue a European cloud provider for “publishing insecure, broken images of Ubuntu despite many months of coaxing to do it properly.”

    The company says that its cloud OS relies on trust and that such actions undermine the sucess of the certified Ubuntu images that are guaranteed to run on specific cloud platforms such as AWS, Azure or Google.

  • Auto Rikshaw Racing Game added to Tizen Store

    Hey guys, do you like to play with Auto Rickshaws ? This is a racing game named “Crazy Auto Traffic Racer”, added by Games2Win Pvt. Ltd.

  • Why your teams may be failing at the collaboration game

    When we think about skills needed to build open structures and establish open mindsets, collaboration jumps to mind immediately. In order to collaborate effectively, communication—or rather, clear communication—is imperative to making it all work.

    Communication can be defined as a transfer of information from one space or person to another—but it can look like dialogue, conflict resolution, listening skills, or even a knowledge commons. In open organizations, we look for timely transfers of information to all members so that they may do their jobs effectively and efficiently.

  • Portugal's AMA publishes two open data guides

    The Portuguese Agency for Administrative Modernisation (Agência para a Modernização Administrativa, AMA) has published two national open data guides.

    As its title implies, the 'Open Data Introduction Guide' is aimed at the general public or those interested in learning about the subject.

    The 'Open Data Guide' is the official government publication on the subject of public sector data openness. It addresses theoretical issues and practices relevant to the development of open data in Portugal. The topics include open movements, the potential of data openness, processes of opening information, ways of reuse, and an introduction to technical issues. This document is aimed at the various stakeholders in the Portuguese open data ecosystem, such as public agencies, researchers, journalists, citizens and companies interested in reusing or analysing public sector information.

  • Poland looking for new Digital Services and Open Data director

    The Polish Ministry of Digital Affairs is looking for a new director for its Department of Development of Digital Services and Open Data. The director is expected to be a "creative and proactive person who will set out the directions and lead the way for the most important and boldest changes in the state administration".

today's leftovers

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Misc
  • The future of xinput, xmodmap, setxkbmap, xsetwacom and other tools under Wayland

    This post applies to most tools that interface with the X server and change settings in the server, including xinput, xmodmap, setxkbmap, xkbcomp, xrandr, xsetwacom and other tools that start with x. The one word to sum up the future for these tools under Wayland is: "non-functional".

    An X window manager is little more than an innocent bystander when it comes to anything input-related. Short of handling global shortcuts and intercepting some mouse button presses (to bring the clicked window to the front) there is very little a window manager can do. It's a separate process to the X server and does not receive most input events and it cannot affect what events are being generated. When it comes to input device configuration, any X client can tell the server to change it - that's why general debugging tools like xinput work.

  • Please don't use pastebins in bugs
  • Linux Top 3: SparkyLinux 4.5, Mageia 5.1 and Peppermint 7

    SparkyLinux is (yet another) Debian based Linux distribution. The SparkyLinux 4.5 update codenamed "Tyche' was released on December 3, providing users with multiple desktop choice other than GNOME. SparkLinux 4.5 ships with KDE, LXDE, LXQt, MATE and Xfce.

  • Upcoming Linux Distributions Releasing In December 2016

    In December 2016, a big Linux distribution release is taking shape in the form of Linux Mint 18.1 Serena, flavored by Cinnamon 3.2. It’ll be accompanied by the release of security and privacy-focused Anonymous Live CD Tails 2.9.

  • AMD Extends Strategic Partnership with Mentor Graphics for Linux-based Embedded Solutions
  • Samsung Z2 gets Firmware Update to Tizen 2.4.0.6 Z200FDDU0BPK3 in India

    Samsung’s latest Tizen-based smartphone, the Z2 model number SM-Z200F, has had a new software / firmware update land in India today. The update takes it to Tizen version 2.4.0.6., firmware Z200FDDU0BPK3. The update log mentions the following improvements: Improved send SOS message (panic mode) and also improvements to the security of the device. Additional bug fixes and performance improvements may have also been bundled in.

today's leftovers

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Misc
  • China builds world’s fastest supercomputer without U.S. chips

    China on Monday revealed its latest supercomputer, a monolithic system with 10.65 million compute cores built entirely with Chinese microprocessors. This follows a U.S. government decision last year to deny China access to Intel's fastest microprocessors.

    There is no U.S.-made system that comes close to the performance of China's new system, the Sunway TaihuLight. Its theoretical peak performance is 124.5 petaflops, according to the latest biannual release today of the world's Top500 supercomputers. It is the first system to exceed 100 petaflops. A petaflop equals one thousand trillion (one quadrillion) sustained floating-point operations per second.

    The most important thing about Sunway TaihuLight may be its microprocessors. In the past, China has relied heavily on U.S. microprocessors in building its supercomputing capacity. The world's next fastest system, China's Tianhe-2, which has a peak performance of 54.9 petaflops, uses Intel Xeon processors.

  • More Benchmarks From The 2016 MacBook Pro (Mac-A5C67F76ED83108C)
  • A Look At The Many Different Vulkan Engine/Renderer Projects On GitHub
  • Trisquel 8.0 Alpha Pairs A Linux-Libre Experience With MATE

    This past week marked the availability of the first alpha release of Trisequel 8.0 "Flidas", the latest installment of the Free Software Foundation endorsed GNU/Linux distribution.

    Among the changes coming for Trisquel 8.0 is using the Linux-Libre 4.4 kernel, MATE 1.12.1 is the default desktop over GNOME, and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS is used as the base.

  • It's official: Kondik is gone from the Cyanogen that bore his handle [Ed: Microsoft deal killed them. As usual.]

    STEVE KONDIK, the original founder of Cyanogen, has been officially ousted from the company following the closure of its Seattle base.

    As reported yesterday, Kondik told developers that he "f*cked up and was f*cked over" and that he was considering what to do next given that he had lost control of rights to the Cyanogen name when he and his co-founder had moved from developer group to business.

    Kondik, aka CyanogenMod, relinquished all control over the operation of the business taking on the moniker of chief science officer, which may or may not have been a simple honorific.

today's leftovers

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  • How fast is KVM? Host vs virtual machine performance!
  • Kernel maintenance, Brillo style

    Brillo, he said, is a software stack for the Internet of things based on the Android system. These deployments bring a number of challenges, starting with the need to support a different sort of hardware than Android normally runs on; target devices may have no display or input devices, but might well have "fun buses" to drive interesting peripherals. The mix of vendors interested in this area is different; handset vendors are present, but many more traditional embedded vendors can also be found there. Brillo is still in an early state of development.

  • Reviewing Project Management Service `Wrike` And Seems Interesting

    I have been testing some services for our project and found this amazing service, thought why not share it with you guys, it might be useful for you. Project management is a term that in some respects appears common, yet in practice still seems to be limited to large companies. While this may be true, the foundations of project management are actually rather simple and can be adopted by anyone, in any industry. One of the major requirements you need to consider when selecting a good project management software is the ability to run and operate it on the go via your mobile devices. Other factors include the ability to access the software from any platform whether it be Linux, Mac, or Windows. This can be achieved when the project management software is web-based. Wrike is a software that does of all this.

  • World Wine News Issue 403
  • OSVR on Steam, Unity drops legacy OpenGL, and more gaming news
  • GNOME Core Apps Hackfest 2016

    This November from Friday 25 to Sunday 27 was held in Berlin the GNOME Core Apps Hackfest.

    My focus during this hackfest was to start implementing a widget for the series view of the Videos application, following a mockup by Allan Day.

  • Worth Watching: What Will Happen to Red Hat Inc Next? The Stock Just Declined A Lot
  • Vetr Inc. Lowers Red Hat Inc. (RHT) to Buy
  • Redshift functionality on Fedora 25 (GNOME + Wayland). Yes, it's possible!

    For those who can't live without screen colour shifting technology such as Redshift or f.lux, myself being one of them, using Wayland did pose the challenge of having these existing tools not working with the Xorg replacement. Thankfully, all is not lost and it is possible even right now. Thanks to a copr repo, it's particularly easy on Fedora 25.

    One of the changes that comes with Wayland is there is currently no way for third-party apps to modify screen gamma curves. Therefore, no redshift apps, such as Redshift itself (which I recently covered here) will work while running under Wayland.

  • My Free Software Activities in November 2016
  • Google's ambitious smartwatch vision is failing to materialise

    In February this year, Google's smartwatch boss painted me a rosy picture of the future of wearable technology.

    The wrist is, David Singleton said, "the ideal place for the power of Google to help people with their lives."

  • Giving Thanks (along with a Shipping Update)

    Mycroft will soon be available as a pre-built Raspberry Pi 3 image for any hobbyist to use. The new backend we have been quietly building is emerging from beta, making the configuration and management of you devices simple. We are forming partnerships to get Mycroft onto laptops, desktops and other devices in the world. Mycroft will soon be speaking to you throughout your day.

  • App: Ixigo Indian Rail Train PNR Status for Tizen Smart Phones

    Going on a train journey in India? Ixigo will check the PNR status, the train arrival and departure & how many of the particular tickets are left that you can purchase. You can also do a PNR status check to make sure that your seat is booked and confirmed.

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today's howtos

Leftovers: Ubuntu

  • IOTA: IoT revolutionized with a Ledger
    Ever since the introduction of digital money, the world quickly came to realize how dire and expensive the consequences of centralized systems are. Not only are these systems incredibly expensive to maintain, they are also “single points of failures” which expose a large number of users to unexpected service interruptions, fraudulent activities and vulnerabilities that can be exploited by malicious hackers. Thanks to Blockchain, which was first introduced through Bitcoin in 2009, the clear benefits of a decentralized and “trustless” transactional settlement system became apparent. No longer should expensive trusted third parties be used for handling transactions, instead, the flow of money should be handled in a direct, Peer-to-Peer fashion. This concept of a Blockchain (or more broadly, a distributed ledger) has since then become a global phenomenon attracting billions of dollars in investments to further develop the concept.
  • Return Home and Unify: My Case for Unity 8
  • Can netbooks be cool again?
    Earlier this week, my colleague Chaim Gartenberg covered a laptop called the GPD Pocket, which is currently being funded on Indiegogo. As Chaim pointed out, the Pocket’s main advantage is its size — with a 7-inch screen, the thing is really, really small — and its price, a reasonable $399. But he didn’t mention that the Pocket is the resurrection of one of the most compelling, yet fatally flawed, computing trends of the ‘00s: the netbook. So after ten years, are netbooks finally cool again? That might be putting it too strongly, but I’m willing to hope.

Linux Devices

  • Compact, rugged module runs Linux or Android on Apollo Lake
    Ubiqcomm’s 95 x 95mm, Apollo Lake-based “COM-AL6C” COM offers 4K video along with multiple SATA, USB, GbE, and PCIe interfaces, plus -40 to 85°C operation. Ubiqconn Technology Inc. has announced a “COM-AL6C” COM Express Type 6 Compact form factor computer-on-module built around Intel’s Apollo Lake processors and designed to withstand the rigors of both fixed and mobile industrial applications. The module offers a choice among three Intel Apollo Lake processors: the quad-core Atom x5-E3930, quad-core x5-E3940, and dual-core x7-E3950, which are clocked at up to 2.0GHz burst and offer TDPs from 6.5 to 12 Watts.
  • Internet-enable your microcontroller projects for under $6 with ESP8266
    To get started with IoT (the Internet of Things), your device needs, well, an Internet connection. Base Arduino microcontrollers don't have Internet connectivity by default, so you either need to add Ethernet, Wi-Fi shields, or adapters to them, or buy an Arduino that has built-in Internet connectivity. In addition to complexity, both approaches add cost and consume the already-precious Arduino flash RAM for program space, which limits what you can do. Another approach is to use a Raspberry Pi or similar single-board computer that runs a full-blown operating system like Linux. The Raspberry Pi is a solid choice in many IoT use cases, but it is often overkill when all you really want to do is read a sensor and send the reading up to a server in the cloud. Not only does the Raspberry Pi potentially drive up the costs, complexity, and power consumption of your project, but it is running a full operating system that needs to be patched, and it has a much larger attack surface than a simple microcontroller. When it comes to IoT devices and security, simpler is better, so you can spend more time making and less time patching what you already made.
  • Blinkenlights!
  • Blinkenlights, part 2
  • Blinkenlights, part 3
  • [Older] Shmoocon 2017: The Ins And Outs Of Manufacturing And Selling Hardware
    Every day, we see people building things. Sometimes, useful things. Very rarely, this thing becomes a product, but even then we don’t hear much about the ins and outs of manufacturing a bunch of these things or the economics of actually selling them. This past weekend at Shmoocon, [Conor Patrick] gave the crowd the inside scoop on selling a few hundred two factor authentication tokens. What started as a hobby is now a legitimate business, thanks to good engineering and abusing Amazon’s distribution program.
  • 1.8 Billion Mobile Internet Users NEVER use a PC, 200 Million PC Internet Users never use a mobile phone. Understanding the 3.5 Billion Internet Total Audience
    As I am working to finish the 2017 Edition of the TomiAhonen Almanac (last days now) I always get into various updates of numbers, that remind me 'I gotta tell this story'.. For example the internet user numbers. We have the December count by the ITU for year 2016, that says the world has now 3.5 Billion internet users in total (up from 3.2 Billion at the end of year 2015). So its no 'drama' to know what is 'that' number. The number of current internet total users is yes, 3.5 Billion, almost half of the planet's total population (47%).

Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

  • Rewriting the history of free software and computer graphics
    Do you remember those days in the early nineties when most screensavers were showing flying 3D metallic logotypes? Did you have one? In this article, I want to go back in time and briefly revise the period in the history of computer graphics (CG) development when it transitioned from research labs to everyone's home computer. The early and mid-1990s was the time when Aldus (before Adobe bought the company) was developing PageMaker for desktop publishing, when Pixar created ToyStory, and soon after 3D modeling and animation software Maya by Alias|Wavefront (acquired by Autodesk). It was also a moment when we got two very different models of CG development, one practiced by the Hollywood entertainment industry and one practiced by corporations like Adobe and Autodesk. By recalling this history, I hope to be able to shed new light on the value of free software for CG, such as Blender or Synfig. Maybe we can even re-discover the significance of one implicit freedom in free software: a way for digital artists to establish relations with developers. [...] The significance of free software for CG On the backdrop of this history, free software like Blender, Synfig, Krita, and other projects for CG gain significance for several reasons that stretch beyond the four freedoms that free software gives. First, free software allows the mimicking of the Hollywood industry's models of work while making it accessible for more individuals. It encourages practice-based CG development that can fit individual workflows and handle unexpected circumstances that emerge in the course of work, rather than aiming at a mass product for all situations and users. Catering to an individual's needs and adaptations of the software brings users work closer to craft and makes technology more human. Tools and individual skill can be continuously polished, shaped, and improved based on individual needs, rather than shaped by decisions "from above."
  • ONF unveils Open Innovation Pipeline to counter open source proprietary solutions
    ONF and ON.Lab claim the OIP initiative to bolster open source SDN, NFV and cloud efforts being hampered by open source-based proprietary work. Tapping into an ongoing merger arrangement with Open Networking Lab, the Open Networking Foundation recently unveiled its Open Innovation Pipeline targeted at counteracting the move by vendors using open source platforms to build proprietary solutions.
  • [FreeDOS] The readability of DOS applications
    Web pages are mostly black-on-white or dark-gray-on-white, but anyone who has used DOS will remember that most DOS applications were white-on-blue. Sure, the DOS command line was white-on-black, but almost every popular DOS application used white-on-blue. (It wasn't really "white" but we'll get there.) Do an image search for any DOS application from the 1980s and early 1990s, and you're almost guaranteed to yield a forest of white-on-blue images like these:
  • More about DOS colors
    In a followup to my discussion about the readability of DOS applications, I wrote an explanation on the FreeDOS blog about why DOS has sixteen colors. That discussion seemed too detailed to include on my Open Source Software & Usability blog, but it was a good fit for the FreeDOS blog.
  • Building a $4 billion company around open source software: The Cloudera story
    Dr Amr Awadallah is the Chief Technology Officer of Cloudera, a data management and analytics platform based on Apache Hadoop. Before co-founding Cloudera in 2008, Awadallah served as Vice President of Product Intelligence Engineering at Yahoo!, running one of the very first organizations to use Hadoop for data analysis and business intelligence. Awadallah joined Yahoo! after the company acquired his first startup, VivaSmart, in July 2000. With the fourth industrial revolution upon us—where the lines between the physical, digital and biological spheres are blurred by the world of big data and the fusion of technologies—Cloudera finds itself among the band of companies that are leading this change. In this interview with Enterprise Innovation, the Cloudera co-founder shares his insights on the opportunities and challenges in the digital revolution and its implications for businesses today; how organizations can derive maximum value from their data while ensuring their protection against risks; potential pitfalls and mistakes companies make when using big data for business advantage; and what lies beyond big data analytics.
  • What we (think we) know about meritocracies
    "Meritocracy," writes Christopher Hayes in his 2012 book Twilight of the Elites, "represents a rare point of consensus in our increasingly polarized politics. It undergirds our debates, but is never itself the subject of them, because belief in it is so widely shared." Meritocratic thinking, in other words, is prevalent today; thinking rigorously about meritocracy, however, is much more rare.
  • A new perspective on meritocracy
    Meritocracy is a common element of open organizations: They prosper by fostering a less-hierarchical culture where "the best ideas win." But what does meritocracy really mean for open organizations, and why does it matter? And how do open organizations make meritocracy work in practice? Some research and thinking I've done over the last six months have convinced me such questions are less simple—and perhaps more important—than may first meet the eye.
  • OpenStack Summit Boston: Vote for Presentations
    The next OpenStack Summit takes place in Boston, MA (USA) in May (8.-11.05.2017). The "Vote for Presentations" period started already. All proposals are now again up for community votes. The period will end February 21th at 11:59pm PST (February 22th at 8:59am CEST).
  • [FOSDEM] Libreboot
    Libreboot is free/opensource boot firmware for laptops, desktops and servers, on multiple platforms and architectures. It replaces the proprietary BIOS/UEFI firmware commonly found in computers.
  • Three new FOSS umbrella organisations in Europe
    So far, the options available to a project are either to establish its own organisation or to join an existing organisation, neither of which may fit well for the project. The existing organisations are either specialised in a specific technology or one of the few technology-neutral umbrella organisations in the US, such as Software in the Public Interest, the Apache Software Foundation, or the Software Freedom Conservancy (SFC). If there is already a technology-specific organisation (e.g. GNOME Foundation, KDE e.V., Plone Foundation) that fits a project’s needs, that may well make a good match.
  • ESA affirms Open Access policy for images, videos and data / Digital Agenda
    ESA today announced it has adopted an Open Access policy for its content such as still images, videos and selected sets of data. For more than two decades, ESA has been sharing vast amounts of information, imagery and data with scientists, industry, media and the public at large via digital platforms such as the web and social media. ESA’s evolving information management policy increases these opportunities. In particular, a new Open Access policy for ESA’s information and data will now facilitate broadest use and reuse of the material for the general public, media, the educational sector, partners and anybody else seeking to utilise and build upon it.
  • Key Traits of the Coming Delphi For Linux Compiler
    Embarcadero is about to release a new Delphi compiler for the Linux platform. Here are some of the key technical elements of this compiler, and the few differences compared to Delphi compilers for other platforms.