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Aaron Aseigo is back

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KDE

KDE 4.1 was released last week and there has been a lot of positive coverage in the press and the blogosphere about it. (Side note .. The promo team is busy collecting a list of these articles and putting them together for publication on kde.org.)

With the release of 4.1, KDE executed on our collective commitment to release in July. More importantly, that release fulfilled the milestone we set out for ourselves: a day-to-day usable desktop shell, more polish on the applications, lots of bugs fixed, more platform coverage and more application porting underway.

Make no mistake about it: 4.0 was absolutely required for the development team to successfuly unfold KDE4 over the coming years; but with 4.1 it is indeed time to look forward, not back.

So .. looking forward:

The hiatus is over: I'm back.




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Leftovers: OSS

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    Code repository GitHub published data visualizations that show the impact of open source development on hosted projects, along with the "shape" of project activity. The visualizations emphasize the effect of teamwork, collaboration and communication that reinforce coding efforts.
  • Meet Codemoji: Mozilla’s New Game for Teaching Encryption Basics with Emoji
    The above message may seem like a random string of emoji. But not so: When decoded, it reads: “Encryption Matters.” Today, Mozilla is launching Codemoji, a fun, educational tool that introduces everyday Internet users to ciphers — the basic building blocks of encryption — using emoji.
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  • Self-driving cars and open source - what about GPLv3 and anti-tivoization?
    Primarily, the car manufacturers say that their dislike of the GPLv3 software is due to security issues. According to them, it should not be possible for the car owners to modify the software of the car because this could lead to exposing the users themselves and other road users to danger. In the light of the above, is seems reasonable to question whether security considerations is actually the true reason for the car manufacturers not wanting the users to run their own software on the cars’ hardware. For many years, car owners have replaced parts of their cars, e.g. tires, brakes and even software – which is supported by the car industry. To give an example, there is a large market for the replacement or modification (“remapping”) of the Engine Control Units (“ECU”) software of cars. The ECU’s are computers that control the car’s engine, including fuel mix, fuel supply and gearing. The car industry takes advice and uses data from companies which offer ECU remapping and thereby indirectly supporting the companies although – according to the car industry – changes to the engine allegedly can pose a security risk. Another aspect of the matter is that stating that the clause in GPLv3 absolutely prohibits the car fabricants from forbidding the users running their own software on the hardware of the cars is not completely true. Section 7 of GPLv3 makes it possible for the creators of GPL programs to give the car factories an extra license under which it is possible to use the GPLv3 software in their cars without having to comply with the former-mentioned obligation to provide the installation information to the users of the cars. The way the system works now, the car industry allows modifications of cars which may cause a loss of security. It is possible to develop GPLv3 software that the car fabricants can use without having to allow the car owners modifications. Furthermore, it is only GPLv3 – and therefore not other FOSS licenses – which on a general level forces the car manufacturers to allow modifications of their software. The question of the security level of the cars should hardly be a hindrance to the use of FOSS in self-propelled cars. If the car fabricants could realize this, the many advantages of the freely-available source code could clear the way for the technology generally being adopted faster.
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  • Libarchive Security Flaw Discovered
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