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Interviews

ura and the Challenges of Open Source Design

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Interviews
OSS

Elio Qoshi is the person behind ura, a fascinating design studio dedicated to improving design in free and open source projects. As part of that mission, ura works with projects of all budgets. When we talk about open source, we’re usually talking code first and then—maybe—documentation second. Design is often an after-thought. But as designers like Elio get involved in open source culture, that order could eventually change.

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Dale Raby: How do you Fedora?

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Linux
Interviews

Dale started using Linux around 1999 when he became disconcerted with his Windows 95 computer and a young clerk in an office supply store told him about Linux. “I started reading some of the magazines, most notably Maximum Linux and eventually got to know their senior editor, Woody Hughes and Show Me the Code columnist Mae Ling Mak,” said Raby. His first distribution was Mandrake 6.5 which came in a box with a boot floppy.

Raby manages a small gun shop in Green Bay, Wisconsin. He is also an author with four published books: The Post-Apocalyptic Blacksmith, 777 Bon Mots for Gunslighers and Other Real Men, The Wives of Jacob I, and In the Beginning.

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Conversation With Jonathan Thomas of OpenShot

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Interviews
OSS

I think my initial fascination with Linux was based on rebuilding all my old, broken computers laying around my office/garage. I was having a ton of fun, pulling components out of old computers, installing various distros and seeing what worked/didn’t work. And then there was the 3D desktop cube, which was pretty awesome! Pretty soon I had built my kids their own computer, with “safe” web-browsing, education games, etc. It was many months of playing around with Linux before I learned about Python and started slowly getting more into the programming side of things.

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Women In Tech: Jane Silber, CEO Of Canonical

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Interviews
Ubuntu

When I sat down to interview Jane Silber, CEO of Canonical, I don’t think it was lost on either of us that our ability to chat freely even though I was in my office in the middle of the U.S. and she was in her office in London, England had everything to do with cloud computing, an area in which her company does brisk business.

Silber has been running Canonical (maker of Ubuntu, among a great many other software products) in one form or another for well over a decade at this point, first as COO and now CEO. She answers questions thoughtfully, with carefully chosen words; even though I’m sure I’m not the first journalist to ask her some of the below questions (maybe not even the first one this week), she had no canned responses, and she never veered off course to discuss her own agenda. There were no preset talking points; simply, I asked questions, and she answered them.

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Javier Igea: How do you Fedora?

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Red Hat
Interviews

Javier Igea has been using Linux since he bought the first release of Red Hat from a book store. While he was working on his PhD in New York City, his adviser recommended that he switch from Windows to Linux. The reason for this was he was going to be doing serious numerical computations. When asked about his childhood heroes, he joked about being a little bit old. “Tarzan. Do people know about him?” He continued, “I guess I am a little old, I was born in the late 50’s.” Igea’s two favorite movies are Saving Private Ryan and Welcome to the Sticks. Javier also likes fishing for striped bass, which he describes as a strange event.

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Can you imagine a world without open source?

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Interviews
OSS

I worked as a Linux kernel developer in the areas of scheduler and power management. It was fascinating to gain a deeper understanding and contribute to development in these areas. After a while, I felt the need to gain more breadth in my understanding of computer systems. A holistic view would not only help me better contribute to Linux, but would also enable me to explore other domains in a computer system. Towards this end, I chose to pursue graduate studies in the Electrical and Computer Engineering department of Carnegie Mellon University, which offers a wide range of courses in computer systems and is carrying out cutting edge research in this field too.

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Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator: Lorenzo Paglia

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Linux
Interviews

The Linux Foundation offers many resources for developers, users, and administrators of Linux systems, including its Linux Certification Program. This program is designed to give you a way to differentiate yourself in a job market that's hungry for your skills.

To illustrate how well these certifications prepare you for the real world, this series features some of those who have recently passed the certification exams. These testimonials should help you decide if either the Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator (LFCS) or the Linux Foundation Certified Engineer (LFCE) certification is right for you. In this installment, we talk with LFCS Lorenzo Paglia.

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How I Use Android: Franco.Kernel and Focus creator Francisco Franco

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Android
Interviews

Now we're talking! This isn't for everyone, and it may sound obvious, but I wouldn't be able to live without ADB and Fastboot.

For folks who don't know what it is, ADB is the Android Debug Bridge. It's a very powerful binary that lets you access your phone from your computer's terminal to do all sorts of magical commands.

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Techright’s Roy Schestowitz on All Things Free Tech

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Interviews

Do you love Microsoft? Dr. Roy Schestowitz doesn’t. He also led a “Boycott Novell” movement back when there was a Novell to boycott, and he has crusaded against other tech companies, especially regarding software patents. It is, as they say, “Clean indoor work, but somebody has to do it.” And Roy is that somebody.

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A conversation with Salvatore Sanfilippo, creator of the open-source database Redis

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Interviews
OSS

In case you haven’t heard, Redis is one of the most widely used databases in the world. It’s one of the most popular software projects on GitHub, right up there with tools from Facebook and Google.

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10 hot Android smartphones that got price cuts recently

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Debian and Ubuntu News

  • Debian Project News - July 29th, 2016
    Welcome to this year's third issue of DPN, the newsletter for the Debian community.
  • SteamOS Brewmaster 2.87 Released With NVIDIA Pascal Support
  • Snap interfaces for sandboxed applications
    Last week, we took a look at the initial release of the "portal" framework developed for Flatpak, the application-packaging format currently being developed in GNOME. For comparison, we will also explore the corresponding resource-control framework available in the Snap format developed in Ubuntu. The two packaging projects have broadly similar end goals, as many have observed, but they tend to vary quite a bit in the implementation details. Naturally, those differences are of particular importance to the intended audience: application developers. There is some common ground between the projects. Both use some combination of techniques (namespaces, control groups, seccomp filters, etc.) to restrict what a packaged application can do. Moreover, both implement a "deny by default" sandbox, then provide a supplemental means for applications to access certain useful system resources on a restricted or mediated basis. As we will see, there is also some overlap in what interfaces are offered, although the implementations differ. Snap has been available since 2014, so its sandboxing and resource-control implementations have already seen real-world usage. That said, the design of Snap originated in the Ubuntu Touch project aimed at smartphones, so some of its assumptions are undergoing revision as Snap comes to desktop systems. In the Snap framework, the interfaces that are defined to provide access to system resources are called, simply, "interfaces." As we will see, they cover similar territory to the recently unveiled "portals" for Flatpak, but there are some key distinctions. Two classes of Snap interfaces are defined: one for the standard resources expected to be of use to end-user applications, and one designed for use by system utilities. Snap packages using the standard interfaces can be installed with the snap command-line tool (which is the equivalent of apt for .deb packages). Packages using the advanced interfaces require a separate management tool.
  • Ubuntu 15.10 (Wily Werewolf) Reaches End Of Life Today (July 28)
  • Ubuntu MATE 16.10 Yakkety Yak Gets A Unity HUD-Like Searchable Menu
    MATE HUD, a Unity HUD-like tool that allows searching through an application's menu, was recently uploaded to the official Yakkety Yak repositories, and is available (but not enabled) by default in Ubuntu MATE 16.10.

Tablet review: BQ Aquaris M10 Ubuntu Edition

As employees have become more and more flexible in recent years thanks to the power and performance of mobile devices, the way we work has changed dramatically. We frequently chop and change between smartphones, tablets and laptops for different tasks, which has led to the growth of the hybrid market – devices such as Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 and Apple’s iPad Pro – that provide the power and functionality of a laptop with the mobility and convenience of a tablet. Read more

Leftovers: Software

  • qutebrowser v0.8.1
  • Anonymous publishing with Riffle
    Preserving anonymity online is an understandably hot topic these days. But it can be confused with related concepts like privacy and secure communication. A new protocol called Riffle was recently published [PDF] by researchers at MIT; it offers a different take on anonymity than that implemented by other projects. A Riffle network could be used to implement an anonymous but verifiable blogging or publishing platform: one in which the messages are visible to everyone, but the identity of all users remains hidden. For comparison, the most well-known anonymity project is, no doubt, Tor, which enables users to access Internet services without revealing their physical location on the network. It is possible to use Tor to access publishing services like Twitter and, thus, to broadcast content to the Internet at large without revealing one's identity. But Tor is just as useful at solving other problems, such as accessing remote servers that are blocked by a firewall. While important, that usage of Tor does not necessarily involve anonymity; one could, for instance, use it to log in to Facebook, and Tor alone does not prevent the use of web trackers by sites. Furthermore, Tor is the focus of near-constant attacks (against the network itself and against the algorithms that keep it working), and it may be vulnerable to large-scale traffic analysis—such as a national ISP could perform. One of the stated goals of Riffle is to prevent such traffic analysis, which has led to popular reports and online discussions referring to Riffle as a Tor competitor. But Riffle, in fact, tackles a narrower problem set. In a Riffle network, every message sent or file uploaded is eventually published in plaintext form where everyone can see it. The Riffle protocol offers strong guarantees that the identity of the message's uploader cannot be discovered—even in cases where multiple servers in the network have been compromised.
  • Announcing Serval!
    Serval is launching on Tuesday the 2nd of August, 2016. It will be available under the GPLv2 and is completely free to use.
  • Tangent Animation studio will support the Blender Institute to hire two devs full time to work on Blender 2.8 and a third one for Cycles
  • 5 Best Calendar Apps for Linux Desktop
    Time is money, as goes an old saying, therefore you need to manage it very well. This then calls for proper planning of your daily schedule, future events, appointments and several other daily activities.
  • Pandora Client `Pithos` Sees New Major Release
    Pithos 1.2.0 was released today and it includes a new explicit content filter option, new dialog design, along with other improvements and important bug fixes.
  • Terminix Now Available In PPA For Ubuntu 16.04 And Linux Mint 18 [Quick Update]
    Terminix was uploaded to the Debian Sid repositories recently. To make it easier to install and stay up to date with the latest Terminix versions, I used the official Debian packaging (thanks to the packagers!) and created a Terminix PPA for Ubuntu 16.04 and Linux Mint 18.
  • Geary – A Good Looking Modern Email Client for Linux
    Geary is a free and open source email client. It’s simple to setup and install, in a few minutes your done. No need to add extra features or add ons to install, it just works. The user interface is the easiest and simplest to use.
  • PVS-Studio confesses its love for Linux
    This post is about love. About the love of the static code analyzer PVS-Studio, for the great open source Linux operating system. This love is young, touching and fragile. It needs help and care. You will help greatly if you volunteer to help testing the beta-version of PVS-Studio for Linux.