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Microsoft

You Think the Visual Studio Code binary you use is a Free Software? Think again.

Filed under
Microsoft
OSS

I’m not a lawyer, I could be wrong or not accurate enough in my analysis (sorry!) but I’ll try nonetheless to give my understanding of the situation because the current state of licensing of Visual Studio Code tries to fool most users.

Microsoft uses here a simple but clever trick allowed by the license of the code source of Visual Studio Code: the MIT license, a permissive Free Software license.

Indeed, the MIT license is really straightforward. Do whatever you want with this software, keeps the original copyright and I’m not responsible of what could happen with this software. Ok. Except that, for the situation of Visual Studio Code, it only covers the source code, not the binary.

Unlike most of the GPL-based licenses for which both the source code and the binary built from this source code are covered by the terms of the license, using the MIT license authorizes Microsoft to make available the source code of the software, but do whatever they want with the binary of this software. And let’s be crystal-clear: 99,99% of the VSC users will never ever use directly the source code.

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Stop using GitHub as a measure of open source contributions

Filed under
Development
Microsoft

It should go without saying, but apparently doesn’t, that GitHub hosts only a fraction of open source projects and activity.

GitHub launched about 10 years ago. Open source and free software development predates GitHub’s existence by twenty years or so. A lot of projects have picked up and moved from their previous homes to GitHub, but many haven’t. GNU projects, for example, aren’t hosted there. Canonical’s Launchpad repository hosts a lot of projects that aren’t on GitHub. Fedora has Pagure, the Eclipse project has its own source control for its projects, as well as the Apache Software Foundation, etc.

Some of those may mirror projects on GitHub, but it’s unclear to me how people who don’t have GitHub accounts are counted when people survey GitHub. I’m skeptical that using GitHub APIs to pull user data to see “what company does so-and-so work for?” is effective when that person hasn’t created a GitHub account.

GitHub metrics are biased towards newer projects, corporate-founded projects, and projects that have a bent towards non-reciprocal licenses.

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The 'New' Microsoft

Filed under
Google
Microsoft
Moz/FF
Web
  • Windows derails Chrome, Firefox installation, promotes Microsoft Edge instead [iophk: "Where are the Microsoft apologists on this? They sure have been quiet."]

    Microsoft is trying a new tactic to get people to use its Edge browser: a warning dialog box that interrupts the installation of other browsers like Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.

  • Microsoft tests ‘warning’ Windows 10 users not to install Chrome or Firefox

    While the prompts can be turned off, they’re yet another example of Microsoft infesting Windows 10 with annoying ads and pop-ups. Some similar prompts already appear and attempt to push Chrome or Firefox users to use Edge, but this latest one steps up Microsoft’s war against Chrome even further. It’s not clear why Microsoft thinks it’s a good idea to include these irritating prompts, as all they’re likely to do is anger Windows 10 users rather than convince them to switch to Edge.

  • Microsoft Tests Warning Windows 10 Users About Installing Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox [iophk: "yeah, Microsoft "loves" FOSS"]

    While the warning does not block the installation, it is a blatant move from Microsoft to try and stop users from downloading a rival's Web browser. As per a CNET report, test was confirmed in Windows 10 version 1809, build 17758.1. It is worth noting that it is a preview release, which will not be available to the general public for another month or so. In a statement to CNET, Microsoft referred to its Windows test programme, and said, "We're currently testing this functionality with insiders only. The Windows Insider Program enables Microsoft to test different features, functionality and garner feedback before rolling out broadly. Customers remain in control and can choose the browser of their choice." The Verge, on the other hand, cites its sources to say the warning will not make its way to the Windows 10 October 2018 Update.

Microsoft is Playing Dirty Again

Filed under
Microsoft
  • Windows 10 Tries to Push Firefox and Chrome Over the Edge

    Windows 10 now “warns” you not to install Chrome or Firefox when you download them. It’s just one of the many annoying ways Microsoft pushes Edge, which only has 4% market share despite Microsoft’s increasing desperation.

    Microsoft will probably start using this “app recommendations” feature to push other apps in the future, too. Imagine Windows warning you not to install LibreOffice because you could pay for Office 365 instead.

  • Microsoft: You don't want to use Edge? Are you sure? Really sure?

    Microsoft really wants you to use Edge in the latest Windows Insider builds, and the software giant is not afraid to let you know it.

    Windows Insider Sean Hoffman took to Twitter last night to express his displeasure at a pop-up shown by Windows 10 when he attempted to install an alternative browser. When he ran the Firefox installer, a pop-up showed up suggesting perhaps he'd like to stick with Edge. It is safer and faster, after all (according to Microsoft).

    Hoffman, running build 17744.1004, the current slow ring version of the next release of Windows 10, pulled no punches in his reaction.

Openwashing iPhone With "HeadGaze" and Microsoft Openwashing Itself

Filed under
Microsoft
Mac
OSS

Openwashing and FUD

Filed under
Microsoft
OSS

GNU/Linux With Windows

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Microsoft
  • Dual boot issues and the Black Screen of Death

    As is the case for many open source enthusiasts, I am the go-to person in my family for solving PC issues. I enjoy messing with computers and solving technical challenges. Over the last few weeks, I had a lot of Windows encounters.

    [...]

    There are a lot of (older) discussions on the internet about Linux driver issues. From my experience over the last few years, I only encountered such issues in the area of Broadcom WiFi and Bluetooth drivers. Everything else was always detected without a problem. This recent experience showed me that on the Windows side, these issues are still around. People who buy a PC with Windows 10 pre-installed, will never encounter these issues, as they are handled by the OEMs. But if you upgrade such a PC to a newer version of Windows, you might run into them. For people that are less technical (and scared of the Windows Command prompt), this is something they simply will not be able to resolve themselves. On openSUSE Leap, there are no Intel HD Graphics issues (and I tested 13.2, 42.1, 42.2, 42.3 and 15). So the grass is definitely greener on the openSUSE side.

  • 4 Ways to Run Linux Commands and Software on Windows

    So, all the times we have written about platform applications for another platform, it was with regards to the availability of Windows software for the Linux platform.

    What if you want to run Linux software on Windows? Afterall, there are certain features that are peculiar to Linux and sometimes, Unix-like platforms.

  • How to install Linux Mint 19 alongside Windows

    Windows can stay on your computer, when you install Linux Mint 19! It's handy to turn your computer into a dual boot machine. That way you can choose each time you turn on your computer, what operating system you want to boot: Mint or Windows.

The Latest FOSS FUD

Filed under
Microsoft
OSS
  • No lasers or Linux hacks, but Better Call Saul remains one of TV’s techiest shows [Ed: Conde Nast throws terms like "Linux hacks" into headlines that have nothing to do with Linux. Knowing that many people associate "hacks" with malice...]
  • Open Source Components Save Time but Need to be Closely Monitored [Ed: Proprietary software also needs to be closely monitored, but I understand that some rather parasitic firms -- some connected closely to Microsoft -- create a stigma to sell their blobs. Zev Brodsky from WhiteSource, which works with Microsoft, is attacking FOSS here, as usual.]
  • Opening Doors to Collaboration with Open Source Projects [Ed: Here we have the Linux Foundation once again propping up Microsoft; this is the company currently investigated by DoJ for corruption and bribery. If the Linux Foundation was a wild animal, it would not survive very long. It’s putting its head inside the lion’s mouth, expecting the lion to lick it instead of biting it. Or maybe the Linux Foundation no longer pursues the success of Linux but instead just wants to get as much money and influence as possible...]

What Linux does better than Windows

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Microsoft

Linux-based operating systems are free alternatives to Microsoft Windows and MacOS, which ships with Apple computers.

While Linux technically only refers to the kernel, the core program of an operating system, it is often used as shorthand for any operating system that uses Linux.

However, for a fully functioning computer several other programs are required in addition to the kernel. GNU is a major source of such programs for Linux-based systems.

Aside from the cost, openness, and freedom, which are often covered in comparisons like these, there are a few practical places where Linux operating systems shine in comparison to their premium-rated counterparts.

You will also find many articles talking about the improved security and privacy you can have by running a Linux distribution. Those are important issues, but for the purposes of this one we will focus on user experience features.

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US probe into Microsoft bribery and corruption

Filed under
Microsoft

The US Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission have launched an investigation into Microsoft over possible bribery and corruption in connection with software sales in Hungary.

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today's leftovers

  • How to get Apple-like gestures on the Linux desktop
    I understand a big part of the problem is that Apple owns patents on trackpad gestures, something which hinders the open source community's ability to create a quality experience. But that hurdle shouldn't equate to a bad experience, which many people have. Not only does Linux install without any sort of multi-touch gestures, it is sometimes over sensitive or under sensitive. I've installed Linux on laptop hardware and found the trackpad configuration was a losing battle—until I discovered Fusuma.
  • How to fix missing Python for Ansible in Fedora Vagrant
  • Did your open source career begin with video games?
    Certainly you don't need to be a gamer as a child to grow up and become a developer, nor does being a gamer automatically set you up for a career in technology. But there's definitely a good bit of overlap between the two. After listening to the first episode of Command Line Heroes, and reading Ross Turk's story of how MUDs led him to a career in coding, I've thought a bit about how gaming has influenced my own journey into technology, and how it lead to a career in open source. For me, that first important game was WarCraft II. Sure, I played games before it, and after it. But shortly after my family replaced our faithful Apple IIc with a blazing fast (by comparison) 486 PC with amazing features like color, and a sound card, and even a 2400 baud modem (that would take about three months to download the equivalent of an hour of Netflix today).
  • openSUSE to Have Summit in Nashville
    The openSUSE community is headed to Nashville, Tennessee, next year and will have the openSUSE SUmmit Nashville April 5 through April 6, 2019, during the end of SUSE’s premier annual global technical conference SUSECON. Registration for the event is open and the Call for Papers is open until Jan. 15. Partners of openSUSE, open-source community projects and community members are encourage to register for the summit and submit a talk. The schedule for the openSUSE SUmmit Nashville will be released at the beginning of February.
  • How selfless is your open organization?
    "Community" is a defining characteristic of open organizations. A community could be many things—a "team," a "group," a "department," or a "task force," for example. What makes any of these groups a true community is two distinct factors: a well-defined purpose and clear investment in or value of that purpose. How does a person balance a community's values with his or her own, personal values? How does that person negotiate this relationship when setting goals? Answers to these questions will expose and speak to that person's character.
  • Andres Rodriguez: MAAS 2.5.0 beta 1 released
    I’m happy to announce that MAAS 2.5.0 beta 1 has been released.
  • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 545
    Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 545 for the week of September 9 – 15, 2018.
  • Arm delivers production-ready open source Bluetooth Low Energy software stack to unleash IoT innovation
    Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) is quickly becoming the Internet of Things (IoT) connectivity protocol of choice for a variety of use cases, including smart lighting, smart cities and asset tracking, where low-cost, power consumption and small footprint are fundamental requirements. According to the 2018 Bluetooth Market Update, there will be more than 5 billion Bluetooth device shipments by 2022, with 97% of them containing Bluetooth Low Energy technology. The advances in Bluetooth 5 technology, along with the introduction of Bluetooth Mesh are driving new market opportunities across building automation, sensor networks, and other IoT solutions.
  • Digital Minimalism and Deep Work
    Through Newport's blog I learned that the title of his next book is Digital Minimalism. This intrigued me, because since I started thinking about minimalism myself, I've wondered about the difference of approach needed between minimalism in the "real world" and the digital domains. It turns out the topic of Newport's next book is about something different: from what I can tell, focussing on controlling how one spends one's time online for maximum productivity.

Red Hat and Fedora Leftovers