Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Computing Awards - Projects of the Year

Filed under
Sci/Tech

We profile the shortlists for the Projects of the Year in the prestigious Computing Awards for Excellence 2005, to be hosted on 16 November in London.

Two notables:

The British Army

Armynet is the first Ministry of Defence (MoD) secure web portal, providing worldwide access for soldiers and their families to official information that often cannot be published on the internet.

The system has changed the way the Army can access and communicate information, and has improved morale among troops on operations through secure web-based email, message boards and instant messaging to keep in touch with home. The portal provides a one-stop shop for all operational, routine business and welfare information across the organisation. Some 56,000 soldiers are using ArmyNet, from operations in Iraq, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan and the Balkans.

The system is based on open source technologies, which reduces the cost of integration with existing applications, such as the Army’s content management system. The project has been such a success that the MoD is considering it as a model for use across the entire defence community.

British Airways

British Airways’ ‘Customer Enabled BA’ project was the airline’s response to 9/11 and the downturn in the travel sector.

The plan involved web-enabling the company’s booking, loyalty, checking-in and other customer services on a single ecommerce platform available through www.ba.com.

But this meant much more than simply a new web site. For BA to achieve its aim in only two years required new IT governance, integration and design processes across the organisation.

At the heart of the project was a new Integrated Applications Infrastructure. A combined IT and business team introduced new componentised software development techniques based on a service-oriented architecture, as well as introducing open, standardised technologies such as Linux on Intel-based servers.

This approach offers central control over multiple teams in several locations. Business processes are simplified, and rapid application development has speeded up the release of new software.

The flexible, component-based environment has already saved nearly £100m, says BA. One new function – allowing customers to upgrade easily when booking online – returned the £1m invested in the programme within just three months. Nearly one-third of BA’s 36 million customers now use the BA site to book flights or manage their booking.

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

RPi-friendly home automation kit adds voice recognition support

Following its successful Kickstarter campaign for a standalone Matrix home automation and surveillance hub, and subsequent release of an FPGA-driven Matrix Creator daughter board for use with the Raspberry Pi, Matrix Labs today launched a “Matrix Voice” board on Indiegogo. The baseline board, currently available at early-bird pricing of $45, has an array of 7 microphones surrounding a ring of 18 software-controlled RGBW LEDs. A slightly pricier model includes an MCU-controlled WiFi/Bluetooth ESP32 wireless module. Read more

The Year Of Linux On Everything But The Desktop

The War on Linux goes back to Bill Gates, then CEO of Microsoft, in an “open letter to hobbyists” published in a newsletter in 1976. Even though Linux wouldn’t be born until 1991, Gates’ burgeoning software company – itself years away from releasing its first operating system – already felt the threat of open source software. We know Gates today as a kindly billionaire who’s joining us in the fight against everything from disease to income inequality, but there was a time when Gates was the bad guy of the computing world. Microsoft released its Windows operating system in 1985. At the time, its main competition was Apple and Unix-like systems. BSD was the dominant open source Unix clone then – it marks its 40th birthday this year, in fact – and Microsoft fired barrages of legal challenges to BSD just like it eventually would against Linux. Meanwhile Apple sued Microsoft over its interface, in the infamous “Look and Feel” lawsuit, and Microsoft’s reign would forever be challenged. Eventually Microsoft would be tried in both the US and the UK for antitrust, which is a government regulation against corporate monopolies. Even though it lost both suits, Microsoft simply paid the fine out of its bottomless pockets and kept right at it. Read more

Digital audio and video editing in GNU/Linux

  • Linux Digital Audio Workstation Roundup
    In the world of home studio recording, the digital audio workstation is one of the most important tools of the trade. Digital audio workstations are used to record audio and MIDI data into patterns or tracks. This information is then typically mixed down into songs or albums. In the Linux ecosystem, there is no shortage of Digital audio workstations to chose from. Whether you wish to create minimalist techno or full orchestral pieces, chances are there is an application that has you covered. In this article, we will take a brief look into several of these applications and discuss their strengths and weaknesses. I will try to provide a fair evaluation of the DAWs presented here but at the end of the day, I urge you to try a few of these applications and to form an opinion of your own.
  • Shotcut Video Editor Available As A Snap Package [Quick Update]
    Shotcut is a free, open source Qt5 video editor developed on the MLT Multimedia Framework (it's developed by the same author as MLT), available for Linux, Windows and Mac. Under the hood, Shotcut uses FFmpeg, so it supports many audio, video and image formats, along with screen, webcam and audio capture. The application doesn't require importing files, thanks to its native timeline editing. Other features worth mentioning are multitrack timeline with thumbnails and waveforms, 4k resolution support, video effects, as well as a flexible UI with dockable panels.
  • Simple Screen Recorder Is Now Available as a Snap App
    Simple Screen Recorder, a popular screen recording app for Linux desktops, is now available to install as a Snap app from the Ubuntu Store.

Kernel News: Linux 4.10 in SparkyLinux, Wayland 1.13.0, and Weston 2.0 RC2

  • Linux Kernel 4.10 Lands in SparkyLinux's Unstable Repo, Here's How to Install It
    The trend of offering users the most recent Linux kernel release continues today with SparkyLinux, an open-source, Debian-based distribution that always ships with the latest GNU/Linux technologies and software versions. SparkyLinux appears to be the third distro to offer its users the ability to install the recently released Linux 4.10 kernel, after Linux Lite and Ubuntu, as the developers announced earlier that the Linux kernel 4.10 packages are now available from the unstable repository.
  • Wayland 1.13.0 Display Server Officially Released, Wayland 1.14 Lands in June
    Bryce Harrington, a Senior Open Source Developer at Samsung, announced today the release and general availability of the Wayland 1.13.0 for GNU/Linux distributions that already adopted the next-generation display server.next-generation display server. Wayland 1.13.0 has entered development in the first days of the year, but the first Alpha build arrived at the end of January, along with the Alpha version of the Weston 2.0 compositor, including most of the new features that are present in this final release that you'll be able to install on your Linux-based operating systems in the coming days.
  • Weston 2.0 RC2 Wayland Compositor Arrives With Last Minute Fixes
    While Wayland 1.13 was released today, Bryce Harrington today opted against releasing the Weston 2.0 reference compositor and instead issue a second release candidate. Weston 2.0 is the next version of this "playground" for Wayland compositor technologies since the new output configuration API had broke the ABI, necessitating a break from the same versioning as Wayland.
  • [ANNOUNCE] weston 1.99.94