A recent article in Fortune magazine entitled “The Dawn of the Chrome Age” highlights the success of the Linux-based OS in the low-cost laptop market. According to the article, “Over the holidays in 2013, two Chromebook models were the No. 1 and No.3 bestselling laptops on Amazon.com, and they’re being adopted in schools and business around the world.” Simply put, Chrome OS represents Web apps on top of Linux, and given that the Web has become the leading application development platform – this is significant.
Right out of the gate, Renderdoc isn't as useful to Linux users as is Valve's VOGL or other utilities like APITrace. Because, as it stands right now, Renderdoc only targets the Microsoft Direct3D 10/11 graphics API, but support for OpenGL is planned under this open-source Renderdoc. While still targeting D3D11 right now, there is basic build support for Linux of Renderdoc. I imagine in the months ahead it will get much more interesting once there's OpenGL API support and open-source contributors have had their hand at improving the Renderdoc Linux support.
Between stable builds, the developers launch a large number of Beta versions that integrate a lot of new features. Some of the updates are pretty large, if we take into account the first one in the new series, but more intermediary releases only feature a small number of changes.
According to the changelog, the performance of the Steam client in some cases with the Big Picture window out-of-focus or in-game has been improved, especially on the Linux platform.
In conjunction with its Project Skybridge and K2 announcement, AMD said that today it “demonstrated for the first time its 64-bit ARM-based AMD Opteron A-Series processor, codenamed ‘Seattle,’ running a Linux environment derived from the Fedora Project.” The Fedora-based Linux environment is said to enable development — and migration between — applications based on both x86- and ARM-based processors using common tools.
Just as a meaningless addendum, I actually don’t use Firefox itself, but rather Debian Linux’s “Iceweasel”, which is exactly the same, the only difference being the logo. Debian has insanely high standards for what constitutes “free”, which is in fact laudable but leads to things like this renaming because Firefox’s logo isn’t as completely free as it could be. It causes a lot of confusion for Debian neophytes in the help forums, that’s for sure. I kinda like being an Iceweasel user. Cool name. There’s also Icedove (renamed Thunderbird email program) and my favorite, Iceape (renamed SeaMonkey internet suite). Speaking of SeaMonkey, did you know this even existed? Yes, it’s still possible to use a full featured “internet suite” that includes a web browser, email and newsgroups client, and HTML editor all in one package. Pretty cool, and free of course, and maybe even useful for some folks. All of these things are from the aforementioned fine folks at Mozilla, which is what rose out of the ashes of Netscape years ago. I loved Netscape!
Andi Kleen at Intel announced their work on a smaller networking stack to fit on systems like the Quark where there might only be a few megabytes of RAM and flash storage. Andi wrote, "There has been a lot of interest recently to run Linux on very small systems, like Quark systems. These may have only 2-4MB memory. They are also limited by flash space. One problem on these small system is the size of the network stack. Currently enabling IPv4 costs about 400k in text, which is prohibitive on a 2MB system, and very expensive with 4MB."