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June 2014

Android Wear review: the everything inbox

Filed under
Android
Gadgets

It's not just email either, though it tends to take the brunt of everybody's anger. There are dozens of apps sending us hundreds of notifications; managing all that incoming information is a genuine hassle. Looking at the notification center on our phones, it's hard not to imagine some harried, 1930s office worker. His tie is loosened, sleeves rolled up, sweat beading on his forehead underneath a green visor as he looks at the metal tray marked "INBOX" on his desk. It's piled high with a stack of paper, sent to him from people he doesn't know and doesn't love.

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TI spins Cortex-A9 Sitara SoC

Filed under
Development
Linux
Hardware

TI unveiled a 1GHz, Cortex-A9 Sitara “AM437x” SoC with a 3D GPU, a Linux SDK, and an updated PRU module for dual simultaneous control of fieldbus protocols.

The Sitara AM437x is a major upgrade to the Texas Instruments Sitara AM335x, as well as the related Sitara AM3715 and Sitara AM3874. The Sitara AM437x is said to offer up to 40 percent more processing power than previous Sitara processors.

The Sitara AM437x begins sampling in July, and is available as part of a Linux-ready, $599 TMDXEVM437X evaluation kit (see farther below). Like other Sitara SoCs, the AM437x is aimed primarily at industrial applications. Suggested pairings include factory automation, Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs), home automation gateways, Internet of Things (IoT) gateways, and human machine interface (HMI).

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digiKam Software Collection 4.1.0 released

Filed under
GNU
KDE
Linux

digiKam is the closest thing you can get in GNU/Linux based systems (also on proprietary operating systems) which costs nothing. It’s one of the many extremely polished and feature rich open source applications developed by the KDE community. The digiKam community has announced the release of version 4.1.0 which include many bug fixes for the 4.0.0 release.

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Linux Mint 17: Fresh and Long-Lasting

Filed under
Reviews

Linux Mint 17 is very impressive, but it is often said that the devil is in the details. With Linux Mint 17, the accumulated details are very devilish indeed. The development team did a hell of a job making this Linux distro smoother and better. The GUI for System Settings has a more consistent look. The categories are better organized and separated into subsections.

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Peppermint Five Linux Brings the Cloud to Linux Desktop

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Reviews

As the world increasingly moves to cloud-based infrastructure and software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications, the needs of traditional desktop users are changing. The Peppermint OS Linux platform is an effort to integrate the cloud SaaS world with the desktop in a seamless hybrid approach. Peppermint had its 1.0 release back in 2010, and the technology has been steadily updated ever since. The Peppermint Five Linux distribution was officially released on June 23, providing an updated software base and new features for Peppermint OS users. Peppermint Five is based on the recent Ubuntu 14.04 Long Term Support (LTS) Linux release that debuted on April 17.

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Ubuntu phone release date: on track for 2014 launch

Filed under
Ubuntu

In 2013, Canonical - the company behind Ubuntu - attempted to raise $32m via crowdfunding for its Ubuntu Edge smartphone. It didn't make it, but the Ubuntu phone isn't dead. In fact, development is well under way and the Ubuntu phone operating system is very much alive.

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3 open source content management systems compared

Filed under
OSS
Drupal

Whether you need to set up a blog, a portal for some specific usage, or any other website, which content management system is right for you? is a question you are going to ask yourself early on. The most well-known and widely used open source content management system (CMS) platforms are: Joomla, Wordpress, and Drupal. They are all based on PHP and MySQL and offer a wide range of options to users and developers alike.

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The People Who Support Linux: Hacking on Linux Since Age 16

Filed under
Linux
Interviews

Pretty much all of the projects in software developer Yitao Li's GitHub repository were developed on his Linux machine. None of them are necessarily Linux-specific, he says, but he uses Linux for “everything.”

For example: “coding / scripting, web browsing, web hosting, anything cloud-related, sending / receiving PGP signed emails, tweaking IP table rules, flashing OpenWrt image into routers, running one version of Linux kernel while compiling another version, doing research, doing homework (e.g., typing math equations in Tex), and many others...” Li said via email.

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Privacy focused Blackphone starts shipping

Filed under
Android
Security

Blackphone, an Android-based smartphone developed by Silent Circle, SGP Technologies and Geeksphone, is now shipping. The phone became a sensation during Mobile World Congress as it offered extreme privacy of communication. After the NSA revelations made by Edward Snowden, there is a huge demand for services or devices which offer privacy from NSA and other surveillance agencies. However even the Blackphone doesn’t offer any protection from NSA. Phil Zimmermann, one of the creators of the phone, said that Blackphone doesn’t make you NSA proof.

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More in Tux Machines

Defending the Free Linux World

Co-opetition is a part of open source. The Open Invention Network model allows companies to decide where they will compete and where they will collaborate, explained OIN CEO Keith Bergelt. As open source evolved, "we had to create channels for collaboration. Otherwise, we would have hundreds of entities spending billions of dollars on the same technology." Read more

And the best distro of 2014 is ...

Looking back at my 2013 summary, I just realized I'm a bloody prophet. I wanted openSUSE to make a nice comeback, and it did. And I wanted Fedora to shine, and it did, and it's version 20 no less. The utter and total dominance of the Ubuntu family has been shattered, and this is a very good thing. Competition is always good. What about Mint, you ask? Well, Linux Mint behaved splendidly, but this year, the few spins I tried weren't as sharp and spectacular as what we saw in 2013. Not necessarily a bad thing, but the best-of is more than just a list of grades. It also packs an emotional element, a surprise element, as well as the overall combination of what the selected distributions have achieved with their given parameters. For instance, CentOS is not supposed to be a desktop system, so when it does that well, it's more interesting than similar results with the stock Ubuntu family members and cousins. Hence, this list and its players. Of course, this is entirely my private, subjective observation, but I think it fits the global shift in the Linux field. With the Mir vs Wayland game, a big delay in Ubuntu Edge, and a general cooling off in the distro space, seeing more effort from outside the Ubuntu range is only natural. And welcome. That said, the big winner is still Trusty, and it shows that even though some years may be rougher than others, Ubuntu has its merit and cannot be easily disregarded, no matter how we feel, or want to feel, even if purely on a reactionary basis. And to prove us all wrong, Canonical has baked a phenomenal LTS release, which should bring much joy and fun to Linux users worldwide for years to come. I hope you've liked this compilation. See you next year. Read more

Judge spanks SCO in ancient ownership of Unix lawsuit

IBM has had a win in its long court battle with SCO over just who owns Unix and, by extension, whether Linux is an unauthorised clone. Some quick and simplified history: SCO – short for The Santa Cruz Operation – was a software company that offered a version of Unix for x86 chippery. When Linux came along in the late 90s and started turning into a business, SCO more or less sank and it attacked both Novell and IBM for their role in helping to spread Linus Torvalds' brainchild. At stake was whether those who distribute and profit from Linux should share some of their bounty with SCO. If a court had found in SCO's favour, it would have been bad news for Linux. The Novell suit ran for about six years, but SCO lost. After that, SCO endured all manner of financial strife, but managed to crawl from the crypt more than once. Last year, SCO managed to secure approval to re-open the case against IBM. Read more Also: ENOUGH! Says Nuffer

Hands-On with Tanglu 2.0 Bartholomea annulata

Tanglu GNU/Linux is a distribution based on Debian Testing. When I wrote recently about the future of Linux Mint Debian Edition and other distributions based on Debian Testing, what I was concerned about was the fact that they will be changing their base to Debian Stable in the near future. Tanglu has not given any indication that they intend to change, so this could be a good alternative for the future. Read more