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OSS

Open Source Debate: Copyleft vs. Permissive Licenses

Filed under
GNU
OSS
Legal

Most discussions of free software licenses bore listeners. In fact, licenses are usually of such little interest that 85%of the projects on Github fail to have one.

However, one aspect of licensing never fails to stir partisan responses: the debate over the relative advantages of copyleft licenses such as the GNU General Public License (GPL), and permissive licenses such as the MIT or the Apache 2 licenses.

You only have to follow the links to Occupy GPL! that are making the rounds to see the emotions that this unending debate can still stir. Calling for an end to "GPL purism," and dismissing the GPL as "not a free license," the site calls on readers to use permissive licenses instead, describing them as "truly OSS [Open Source Software] licenses and urging readers to "Join the Fight!"

Occupy GPL! itself is unlikely to have a future. Anonymous calls to actions rarely succeed; people prefer to know who is giving the call to arms before they muster at the barricades. Nor is the site's outdated name and inconsistent diction, nor the high number of exclamation and question marks likely to inspire many readers. Still, the fact that the site exists at all, and the counter-responses in comments on Google+ show that the old debate is still very much alive.

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Google Launches Open-Source, Cross-Cloud Benchmarking Tool

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Google
OSS

Google today launched PerfKit, an open-source cloud-benchmarking tool that, in Google’s words, is an “effort to define a canonical set of benchmarks to measure and compare cloud offerings.” The PerfKit tools currently support Google’s own Compute Engine, Amazon’s AWS and Microsoft’s Azure clouds. Google says it has worked on this project with over 30 researchers, companies and customers, including ARM, Canonical, Cisco, Intel, Microsoft, Rackspace and Red Hat.

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Without open source, there would be no DevOps

Filed under
OSS

If we're going to do DevOps, we have to give up open source. Right? Wait, we're an Agile shop, so we have to give that up, too. Right?

Over the last five years or so, I've talked with a lot of people confused about what it means to "do DevOps,” and clearly concerned about having to give up other things that have already proven their value in order to adopt DevOps. The bad news is, we've not done a good job in the DevOps community of nailing down what DevOps is and what it isn't at an earlier stage in our development.

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Cisco Takes Open Source Route to Policy Revamp

Filed under
OSS

Cisco is developing open source tools designed to allow network operators to describe policy in more meaningful terms.

The Noiro Networks team inside Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) is trying to solve the problem of network policy that doesn't make sense in an application-centric world. Typical networking policy uses networking language -- describing traffic flows or or whether specific ports are allowed to connect with each other. Instead, the Noiro Networks team is looking to describe policies in terms of how applications are allowed to interoperate, says Thomas Graf, a principal software engineer at Cisco working on Noiro Networks.

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Open Source Virtual Reality gains 13 more partners, gives away VR kits to universities

Filed under
OSS

Open Source Virtual Reality (OSVR), the initiative from Razer and Sensics to connect multiple VR software and hardware partners together, had a good handful of partners at CES 2015, and 13 more have been announced today. The new partners include Jaunt -- a maker of cinematic VR experiences that already has apps for Google Cardboard -- plus a few game developers, audio and interface accessory companies.

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Making the Case for Open Source Browsers

Filed under
OSS

In the past, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer was the go-to Web browser for Internet users. But end-user confidence in Internet Explorer appears to be waning.

Last summer, Google Chrome passed Internet Explorer in combined U.S. desktop and mobile Internet market share for the first time. Chrome now holds 31.8 percent of total market share compared to Internet Explorer’s 30.9 percent share. Furthermore, Chrome has been growing at a rate of 6 percent year over year from 2008, while Explorer has been decreasing at a rate of 6 percent during the same time frame.

Mozilla’s Firefox and Apple’s Safari are two other major Web browsers that are now vying for attention in the competitive Internet marketplace that used to be dominated solely by Microsoft’s Explorer. Mozilla currently commands about 12.5 percent of market share, while Safari holds 10.3 percent.

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Docker 1.5: IPv6 support, read-only containers, stats, “named Dockerfiles” and more

Filed under
Server
OSS

The Docker project team wanted to start the new year out right with something awesome; that’s why we’re super excited to announce the first Docker release for 2015. We’ve smashed many long-standing, annoying bugs and merged a few awesome features that both the community and maintainers are excited about. Let’s check out what’s in Docker 1.5.

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Node.js is getting its own open-source, independent foundation

Filed under
OSS

Node.js, the popular server-side JavaScript framework, is getting its own open-source foundation and will no longer be governed by Joyent, the cloud-infrastructure provider plans to announce on Tuesday. It should take around two to three months before the foundation is formally established, and until then, Joyent will remain the corporate steward of the Node.js open-source project, according to Joyent.

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What the Ubuntu phone could mean for open source

Filed under
OSS
Ubuntu

Despite all the unhappy snowflakes that have flung their poo in the general direction of Canonical, and all the Phoronix headlines that have thrown fuel on the fire, I respect Canonical and the community for their willingness to be different and try something new.

Much as I admire the work of Mozilla and Jolla on their respective phone platforms, they are largely doing what we already have today, just in a slightly different way (and in the case of FirefoxOS, to target important new markets). Canonical, though, is doing something genuinely different: scopes are a new model, the application developer model is new, and the feel of Ubuntu on phones even feels new.

With it, they are stirring the pot in a heavily entrenched market and having the confidence to propose something new, something that fits into a bigger convergence story, and something that is entirely free and open source.

Is it a risky play? Sure it is. All of the eggs are being put into the convergence basket, but if they pull this off, it could open up a whole new exciting era, not just for Ubuntu, but for open source too.

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AllSeen Alliance Senior Director Philip DesAutels: The Full Promise of IoT Lies in Open Source

Filed under
Interviews
OSS

The Internet of Things is already a reality -- thousands of devices, from home appliances and consumer electronics, to smartwatches and cars already connect to the Internet. The problem is that they don't easily, or simply can't, connect to each other to form an Internet of Everything, says Philip DesAutels, senior director of IoT at the AllSeen Alliance, a Linux Foundation Collaborative Project.

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Also: The AllSeen Alliance’s Philip DesAutels on the Internet of Things

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