Choice has long been a defining feature of the world of free and open source software, and the constellation of options only gets bigger every year. Often it's brand-new projects causing the increase, but sometimes the growth happens in another way, when tools that were developed for a company's internal use get opened up for all the world to see, use and improve.
That, in fact, is just what has been happening lately on a grand scale in the security arena, where numerous major companies have been opting to open the doors to their own, in-house tools. Google, Facebook and Netflix are all among the companies taking this approach lately, and it's changing the security landscape significantly.
Just a few years ago, before Android marched to its dominant position in the mobile market, there was much speculation that Google might merge Chrome OS and Android. Early last year, I wrote a post on why that won't happen.
However, an interesting corollary trend is now appearing. Following an initial round of Android apps that can run on Chrome OS, more and more are arriving. The news was announced on a Chrome G+ page, bringing the total number of apps available across Chrome and Android to more than 40.
One of the things we see a lot of here at SD Times is surveys. It’s a great idea for your company to survey its customers, and the resulting information can be really useful—not just to your company, but to those of us who track the industry and its trends.
Thus, I was fairly disturbed by the results of a recent survey by Mendix that found that enterprise developers are having a very hard time giving the business folks what they’ve asked for. Gottfried Sehringer, vice president of marketing at Mendix, painted a fairly bleak picture of the state of enterprise development.
Open-source software plays an increasingly prominent role in many areas of modern business IT – it’s in servers, databases and even the cloud. Vendors like Red Hat, Canonical and others have managed to graft open-source principles onto a profitable business model. The former company became the first open-source-centered business with $1 billion in annual revenue in 2012.
All operating systems have a philosophy. And, the philosophy of an operating system matters. What is the Linux philosophy and how does it affect the community? How has it changed software development for the ages?
Whether we know it or not, most of us have some sort of philosophy of life. It may be as simple as, "Be kind to others," or it might be a very complex life philosophy.
Do you have any idea what your laptop is doing deep down? Is there any way to find out? Usually, the answer is no. Anything could be in there, and as Edward Snowden’s revelations have disclosed, plenty of people in official positions want to make sure that "could be" becomes "is."
Until now, if you wanted a laptop where you or someone you trust could inspect all the source code needed to use it, you had to build it yourself. But a new crowdfunding campaign wants to make a laptop that's designed to use open source software and comes with open source-licensed code to everything, even the firmware.
Trisquel's system installer is essentially the same installer Ubuntu uses, but with a few minor changes to the appearance and some of the options. The installer asks us to select our preferred language and provides us with a link to view the distribution's release notes. Next we are given the chance to download software updates while the installer is running. The following screen asks if we would like Trisquel to automatically divide up our hard disk for us or if we would like to manually partition our hard drive. Manual partitioning is quite straight forward and I found it easy to navigate the disk partitioning screen. Trisquel gives us the option of working with Btrfs, ext2/3/4, JFS and XFS file systems. I opted to install Trisquel on a Btrfs partition. While partitioning the disk we can also choose where to install the distribution's boot loader. The following screen gets us to select our time zone from a map of the world. Then we confirm our keyboard's layout and create a user account for ourselves. We can decide to encrypt the contents of our home directory. The installer copies its files to our hard drive and then asks us to reboot the computer.
Today was another busy day in Linuxland. Linux Mint 17.1 was released over the weekend and a couple of reviews have emerged already. Katherine Noyes says some Linuxers are thinking of heading towards the free *BSDs and Shawn Powers has a list of some of the coolest things folks do with Linux. Jasper St. Pierre explains what's wrong with package managers and Dedoimedo.com is running a best distro of 2014 poll. Ian Sullivan explains how to "De-Chrome" laptops and Bryan Lunduke has a holiday shopping guide.
Traditionally, finding gifts for the Open Source-loving, Linux-running person in your life has not been terribly easy to accomplish. Not so this year. It seems the world is filled with Linux-powered gadgets and gizmos galore. What follows are my personal recommendations (ranging in price from $35 to well over $1,000) that, I feel, most Linux enthusiasts would be stoked to receive – and every single one is powered by one Linux-based system or another.
Open source, OMG ❤❤❤ Seriously, I like open source software much because there’s no need to bother my credit card every time the new software (as well as new OS) version is released. Moreover, the open source software developers are actually more interested in how to make it work rather than how to make it sell, so the result is often more human-oriented.
Google has been very busy with their expansion of Android as a platform this year. At Google IO we saw the announcement of endeavors like Android TV and Android Auto. But the stars of the show were a preview of the next version of Android, code named Android L, and Google's new Material Design principles for interface design across all of their products. In the years since Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich released, we've seen the launch of Jellybean and KitKat, but both of these versions were very iterative improvements upon 4.0 and had equally iterative version numbers with Jellybean being major versions 4.1 through 4.3 and KitKat being 4.4. Lollipop is given the major version number of 5.0, and it's quite fitting as it's arguably the biggest advancement to Android in a long time. It comes with an entirely new interface based on Material Design, a new application runtime, and many new features that I could not hope to summarize in this paragraph.
Q4OS is like Exe GNU/Linux a distribution using the Trinity desktop and based on Debian Stable. In fact I could have picked Exe as well for review but Q4OS just had a new release and it looks cleaner from the start. It was simply the novelty factor that pulled me towards it and it's got a few nice touches of its own as we shall see. Version 0.5.20 was just released on 11/11/2014 and is available both for the mainstream 32 (i386) and 64-bit architectures. The images are a modest 314MB and 337MB respectively which makes for a speedy download and will definitely fit on your CD or even older USB sticks.
Android has gone through quite a few changes during its short 6 years of life. The Android that drives most of the world's smartphones of today would be almost unrecognizable to what was launched in late 2008. We've seen massive visual changes, expansion to almost every conceivable form factor, and a completely fleshed-out content ecosystem for multimedia and apps. As the operating system matured, some elements have successfully grown with it, and others have become dead weight. Naturally, progress calls for the replacement of those pieces that haven't scaled well. We've seen an excellent example of this when ART came to replace Dalvik as the standard Android runtime. With the release of Lollipop, a similar project emerged that promises to replace a part of the existing app development toolchain with a pair of new compilers called Jack and Jill.