Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish


Being Thoughtful About FOSS History

Filed under

Time to saddle up the rant stallion and take him out of the stable: This comes up from time to time on social media — as it did again several days ago — and it’s really about time it stops.

Dennis Ritchie and Steve Jobs died pretty close to each other, time-wise. That may sound like the start of a joke — “Dennis Ritchie and Steve Jobs meet at the pearly gates, and…” — but we’re not going there today. Many people are under the impression that while Steve Jobs got all the attention as the “messiah of computing” when he died, Dennis Ritchie was completely ignored.

Read more

The EPA Deserves Software Freedom, Too

Filed under

The issue of software freedom is, not surprisingly, not mentioned in the mainstream coverage of Volkswagen's recent use of proprietary software to circumvent important regulations that exist for the public good. Given that Volkswagen is an upstream contributor to Linux, it's highly likely that Volkswagen vehicles have Linux in them.

Thus, we have a wonderful example of how much we sacrifice at the altar of “Linux adoption”. While I'm glad for some Free Software to appear in products rather than none, I also believe that, too often, our community happily accepts the idea that we should gratefully laud a company includes a bit of Free Software in their product, and gives a little code back, even if most of what they do is proprietary software.

Read more

Also: VW scandal highlights irony of EPA opposition to vehicle software tinkering

OSS Leftovers

Filed under
  • More for Less: How the Open Source Software Revolution Can Mitigate Unnecessary Expenditure

    The board may be reluctant to move away from a big, branded, closed source solution. But the fact is, Open Source Software can now do the same for less.

  • Open Source Code May Unite IoT

    A high profile open source project working on software-defined networks has given birth to what could become an important standard for bringing unity to the fragmented Internet of Things.

  • Google launches Brotli, a new open source compression algorithm to speed up the web

    As websites and online services become ever more demanding, the need for compression increases exponentially. Fans of Silicon Valley will be aware of the Pied Piper compression algorithm, and now Google has a more efficient one of its own.

  • Splunk admits open source challengers can’t be ignored, but says it has advantage

    If you type the words ‘open source Splunk’ into Google, you’ll soon find a bunch of articles that talk up the challenge posed to Splunk by cheaper, open source alternatives. One even used the headline “In a world of open source big data, Splunk should not exist”, whilst another says “Splunk feels the heat from stronger, cheaper open source rivals”.

    And it’s true that when you think about big data and the Internet-of-Things (IoT), a number of open source technologies spring to mind. But is Splunk worried?

  • Get your own cloud and reclaim your data

    Frank Karlitschek founded ownCloud, a personal cloud platform that also happens to be open source, in 2011. Why open source? Frank has some strong opinions about how we host and share our data, and with the recent scrutiny on security and privacy, his thoughts are even more relevant. In this interview, I ask Frank some questions I've been wondering about my own personal data as well as how ownCloud might play a role in a more open, yet secure, data future.

    A little history on Frank: He is a long time open source contributor and former board member of the KDE e.V. After 10 years of managing engineering teams, today he is the project leader and maintainer of ownCloud. Additionally he is the co-founder and CTO of ownCloud Inc. which offers ownCloud for enterprises.

  • Open source is ugly: Improving UI and UX

    For four years, Garth has been working at Adobe on open source projects as a design and code contributor. These projects include Brackets, Topcoat, and Apache Flex. In addition to his work at Adobe, he also speaks at conferences about the power of design, improving designer/developer collaboration, and the benefits of open source. As part of this effort, Garth founded the Open Design Foundation.

  • Facebook takes Relay JavaScript framework open source

    Facebook this week is open-sourcing Relay, which provides data-fetching for React JavaScript applications. The move could open up new possibilities for the technology, Facebook engineers said.

    Accessible on GitHub, Relay is a JavaScript framework for developing data-driven applications with React, Facebook's JavaScript library for building user interfaces. "Relay is actually intended to build and do for data-fetching what React does for the user interface rendering," said Tom Occhino, Facebook engineering manager, in an interview at this week's @scale conference in San Jose, Calif.

Yes, the FCC might ban your operating system

Filed under

Over the last few weeks a discussion has flourished over the FCC’s Notification of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) on modular transmitters and electronic labels for wireless devices. Some folks have felt that the phrasing has been too Chicken-Little-like and that the FCC’s proposal doesn’t affect the ability to install free, libre or open source operating system. The FCC in fact says their proposal has no effect on open source operating systems or open source in general. The FCC is undoubtedly wrong.

Read more

OSS Leftovers

Filed under
  • GNU/Linux Touted As Safe Replacement For Illegal Software In Bangladesh
  • FOSS the Solution to Piracy, Newspaper Says

    On September 9, a Bangladeshi English language newspaper, Dhaka Tribune, reported that the country’s Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Task Force and Copyright officials had seized 69 laptops with pirated Microsoft software and arrested two high ranking officials at Flora, one of Bangladesh’s largest computer retailers. The raid came after two years of newspaper ads sponsored by the country’s Copyright Office warning about the legal implications of selling pirated goods.

  • AT&T's Chiosi: Unite on Open Source or Suffer

    The telecom industry needs to agree on how it wants the various pieces of open source to come together in a platform for the future, AT&T's Margaret Chiosi said here Thursday. Otherwise, there is the risk of a splintered effort that will ultimately slow critical network transformation.

    Chiosi, a Distinguished Network Architect at AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) who is also president of the Open Platform for NFV Project Inc. and one of the original players in the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) NFV ISG, explained why open source is critical to AT&T's Integrated Cloud (AIC) architecture -- its converged services platform moving forward -- and outlined the numerous open source groups in which the telecom giant is participating, which span 700 different projects.

  • Google's Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software uses Tesseract

    Google's OCR is probably using dependencies of Tesseract, an OCR engine released as free software, or OCRopus, a free document analysis and optical character recognition (OCR) system that is primarily used in Google Books. Developed as a community project during 1995-2006 and later taken over by Google, Tesseract is considered one of the most accurate OCR engines and works for over 60 languages. The source code is available on GitHub.

  • Modest CEO on open source and acquisition by PayPal

    Professionally, Harper was CTO of Threadless and then CTO of Obama for America. He's currently CEO of Modest, Inc., which was recently acquired by PayPal. I asked him what really drives him and he said, "I like to have fun and do interesting things." Also, in a talk Harper gave in Sweden in 2014, he said that he strives to hire people who looked different from him. In this interview, I ask him more about that and his upcoming All Things Open talk.

  • Google, Twitter Forge Open Source Publishing Partnership

    Google will be coming late to the publishing party, having failed to challenge Facebook with its own social media platforms -- the short-lived Google Buzz and the faltering Google+, noted SEO researcher Joshua J. Bachynski. Google's inability to understand its user base has forced it to form an uneasy partnership with Twitter and others, he suggested.

  • Shopping for a Browser

    I remain deeply suspicious of Chrome, since it has been reported to be snooping on its users and reporting back to Google. And, sadly, the latest news from Firefox is discouraging. It's possible that that adware and snoopware will be left out of Mozilla's SeaMonkey browser, which I have recently installed.

  • The Firefox Is in the Hen House

    For a variety of reasons that nobody outside of Mozilla seems to completely understand, Mozilla ended its relationship with Google late last year to ink a deal with Yahoo. Some pundits are figuring that Yahoo offered better terms and that Mozilla stands to make more money now than before, especially since it’s now selling default search on a country-by-country basis instead of carte blanche for the entire planet. Others say the change in affiliation had little to do with money, but was brought about by ideological reasons, basically revolving around Mozilla’s Do Not Track system, which Google does not support. Reportedly, as part of the new deal, Yahoo has agreed to abide by Do Not Track requests.

    Whether Mozilla receives more income from Yahoo than it did from Google is questionable, even if a majority of Firefox users keep Yahoo instead of flipping the switch to Google search, which is doubtful. Certainly, a recent move by Mozilla might indicate that the new deal with Yahoo isn’t as fruitful as the organization had hoped and that it’s scrambling to create new revenue streams.

  • Forza open-source: Italian military to adopt LibreOffice
  • Age-old question: Can commercial software succeed in an open-source world?

    It became the first $1 billion open source company three years ago and closed its last fiscal year in February at almost $1.8 billion in revenue. That is not chump change, but it’s a far cry from the run rates proprietary software companies tout.

  • VSCO Keys is now an open source project hosted on Github

    VSCO says code for the installer can be found on Github. The company also notes “while the current layout editor has been discontinued, users can continue to edit their layouts with a text editor using resources that have been provided in the source code.”

  • VSCO Keys Lives On By Going Free and Open Source
  • GhostBSD 10.1 Is Now Available for Download with MATE and Xfce Flavors

    GhostBSD's Eric Turgeon has the great pleasure of informing us earlier today, September 13, about the immediate availability for download of the final release of GhostBSD 10.1.

  • Chris Webber talks about Guix in Chicago, September 30th
  • Infinity compiler
  • Apple uses Mesos, 3D printed syringe, and more news
  • SGA looks into open-source textbooks as alternative for UMD students

    On the heels of the University of Maryland University College announcing its plans to eliminate textbooks this fall, the SGA is exploring the viability of open-source textbooks as a cheaper alternative for University of Maryland students.

  • Virtual Reality & Open Source

    OSVR is backed by many major companies, such as Intel, Ubisoft, Valve and GearBox, as well as by a long list of universities. The project also boasts many contributors of software design, sensory support, virtual world design, etc.

  • GitLab raises $4 million for its hugely popular open-source GitHub alternative

    Developer collaboration services are back on investors’ agenda. Two months after leading a $1.5 million round into GitLab Inc., Khosla Ventures is coming back for more and pouring an additional $4 million into the startup’s coffers to help ramp its battle against the better-known and better-funded competition.

  • We are the Knights who code Ni!

AT&T's Chiosi: Unite on Open Source or Suffer

Filed under

The telecom industry needs to agree on how it wants the various pieces of open source to come together in a platform for the future, AT&T's Margaret Chiosi said here Thursday. Otherwise, there is the risk of a splintered effort that will ultimately slow critical network transformation.

Chiosi, a Distinguished Network Architect at AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) who is also president of the Open Platform for NFV Project Inc. and one of the original players in the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) NFV ISG, explained why open source is critical to AT&T's Integrated Cloud (AIC) architecture -- its converged services platform moving forward -- and outlined the numerous open source groups in which the telecom giant is participating, which span 700 different projects.

Read more

It's Software Freedom Day!

Filed under

This Saturday, September 19th, is the twelfth annual Software Freedom Day, an international celebration of our favorite thing: free software!

Software Freedom Day means hundreds of fun, educational events, planned by activists all over the globe using resources provided by the Digital Freedom Foundation. Here's a map where you can find an event near you.

Read more

Open source ‘essential for heritage preservation’

Filed under

Working together on open source tools based on open standards is very important for those involved in the preservation of digital information, says Barbara Sierman, board member of the Open Preservation Foundation.

Read more

How will you celebrate Software Freedom Day?

Filed under

Software Freedom Day is a global celebration of free and open source software (FOSS). What will you to on September 19, 2015 to celebrate?

We hope you can choose to do many of the options we listed in our poll to help celebrate FOSS on Software Freedom Day, but even if you can only do one that will be a great benefit to the community.

Read more

Also: Software Freedom Day 2015 Phnom Penh

A Preliminary systemd.conf 2015 Schedule is Now Online!

Exercising Software Freedom in the Global Email System

Filed under

In this post, I discuss one example of how a choice for software freedom can cause many strange problems that others will dismiss. My goal here is to explain in gory detail how proprietary software biases in the computing world continue to grow, notwithstanding Open Source ballyhoo.

Two decades ago, nearly every company, organization, entity, and tech-minded individual ran their own email server. Generally speaking, even back then, nearly all the software for both MTAs and MUAs were Free Software0. MTA's are the mail transport agents — the complex software that moves email around from one Internet domain to another. MUAs are the mail user agents, sometimes called mail clients — the local programs with which users manipulate their own email.

I've run my own MTA since around 1993: initially with sendmail, then with exim for a while, and with Postfix since 1999 or so. Also, everywhere I've worked throughout my entire career since 1995, I've either been in charge of — or been the manager of the person in charge of — the MTA installation for the organization where I worked. In all cases, that MTA has always been Free Software, of course.

Read more

Syndicate content

More in Tux Machines

Leftovers: Gaming

Leftovers: GNOME Software

  • GNOME Photos 3.18 App Gets Its First Hotfix Release Ahead of GNOME 3.18.1
    Earlier today, October 12, Debarshi Ray was happy to inform us all about the immediate availability of the first point release of his GNOME Photos 3.18 image viewer application for the soon-to-be-released GNOME 3.18.1 desktop environment.
  • View your GTK3 app or VM on the Web
    Ever wondered how to view gedit in a browser? It’s not a secret anymore, broadway is there for some time.
  • The new search for GNOME Files (aka Nautilus)
    As some (most? none? who knows =P) of you already know, last cycle I worked as a Google Summer of Code intern with Gtk+ and Nautilus. We saw the very positive results of it. And the picky eyes out there noticed that I wrote with these exact words: “While the project is over, I won’t stop contributing to Nautilus. Even with the interesting code, even with all the strange things surrounding it. Nautilus is like an ugly puppy: it may hurt your eyes, yet you still warmly love it.”

Linux Devices

  • Linksys WRT1900ACS Router is Ready for Open Source Tinkering
    We still regard the Linksys WRT1900AC as one of the best and fastest routers available, though if you're eyeing that model, there's a new version available with more memory and a faster processor. It's the WRT1900ACS, which is essentially an improved version of the WRT1900AC. The new model boasts a 1.6GHz dual-core processor, an upgrade over its predecessor's 1.2GHz chip; 128MB of flash memory (same as before); 512MB of DDR3 RAM, which is two times as much as the WRT1900AC; and eSATA and USB ports.
  • Linux Foundation Takes on Real-Time Computing for Embedded Apps
    What's the next step for open source in the embedded computing market? Google (GOOG), the Linux Foundation and other inaugural supporters of the Real-Time Linux Collaborative Project, which launched this month with a focus on the robotics, telecom, manufacturing, aviation, medical and similar industries, think kernel-level real-time support is the answer.
  • Your Last Chance To Crowdfund InvizBox Go, A Portable Open Source VPN Router
    A small Irish tech startup is in the last few days of crowdfunding for a small Linux-based router it’s hoping to ship out to supporters in February 2016. If its Kickstarter campaign is successful, InvizBox Go will offer users some protection when connecting to WiFi networks. Whether you’re at home, at a hotel, or working out of a coffee shop, the InvizBox Go will be able to connect your devices and route all of your traffic over Tor or a VPN connection (or even both). And since it can connect all devices simultaneously, it’s a great solution for keeping your housemates secure without requiring them to plug into anything or even download any software. Or, let’s face it, it’s also good for watching blocked content from around the world. Users will also be able to block a known list of ad providers. An optional feature will block Windows 10’s tracking domain. Additionally, the device can acts as a WiFi extender or even be used to charge a mobile phone or tablet if users plug into its USB port.
  • Irish firm’s product to mask online activity

Leftovers: OSS

  • Industry Veterans Partner to Create a School for Software Engineers
    Another interesting angle is that during their first year at school all projects except their own, if they decide otherwise, must be open sourced online on the repository of their choice (such as GitHub). "Open source is a great option for teaching students because it not only helps you in building new skills as as software engineers, but also you know how to communicate with your peers. You have to understand how the team is working among many things. So I think open source is a great way to learn software engineering," added Barbier. Because the Linux Foundation also runs many specialized courses, I asked whether the school had any plans to collaborate with the Foundation. I was told that, although they are in touch with the Linux Foundation, it's too early to comment on it.
  • Eximbank opts for Allevo’s open source application FinTP
    It originates from Allevo’s older offering, qPayintegrator. The open source project has been in the making for a few years.
  • Volkswagen’s Diesel Fraud Makes Critic of Secret Code a Prophet
    A Columbia University law professor stood in a hotel lobby one morning and noticed a sign apologizing for an elevator that was out of order. It had dropped unexpectedly three stories a few days earlier. The professor, Eben Moglen, tried to imagine what the world would be like if elevators were not built so that people could inspect them.
  • Mozilla to Bar Many Legacy Plug-ins in Firefox By End of 2016
    As we've reported several times, Google has been introducing big changes in its Chrome browser, especially when it comes to how the browser handles extensions. If you've regularly used either or both of the most popular open source Internet browsers--Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox--then you're probably familiar with the performance and security problems that some extensions for them have caused. Mozilla, like the Chrome team, is also focused on the effect that extensions have on performance and reliability. Now, Benjamin Smedberg, a Mozilla senior engineering manager, in a post to a blog, has confirmed that Mozilla will bar almost all plug-ins built using decades-old NPAPI technology by the end of 2016.
  • What you need to know about Astara
    Astara provides OpenStack operators with a vendor-agnostic network orchestration platform that addresses the complex nature and scale of Neutron implementations. Astara features a driver-based orchestrator to manage network functions from different providers on bare metal, in virtual machines (VMs) and containers.
  • Mirantis, NetApp announce joint partnership
    Mirantis, the pure-play OpenStack company, has joined hands with NetApp and announced a joint partnership that combines the Mirantis OpenStack with mission-critical NetApp storage infrastructures.
  • Mirantis and NetApp Partner for Joint Testing, Cloud Reference Architectures
  • Introducing the Astara project, a preview of Liberty and Mitaka, and more OpenStack news
  • Taunton and Somerset trust explores wider open source adoption
    Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust has commenced "exploratory work" around expanding its use of open source technology to include an e-prescribing solution after going live with a non-proprietary electronic patient record (EPR) system earlier this month. Trust IT director Malcolm Senior said that although work around potentially adopting a new e-prescribing system was at an early stage, Taunton and Somerset was now considering dates for possible implementation. Senior said he was confident the trust would be able to meet a timeline for completing development of an e-prescribing service in line with aims for a 'paperless NHS' by 2018.
  • Nexenta Brings Open Source-driven Software-Defined Storage Solutions to the Dell Solutions Roadshow 2015 in Japan
  • Update Python GNUPG library for GNU Health crypto plugin
    Issues digitally signing and/or verifying GNUHealth documents, using GNUPG version 2.x should be solved by upgrading to the latest python-gnupg library[1], version 0.3.8 . You can check the changelog[2] for the details.
  • Another city swaps in LibreOffice to replace Microsoft Office
    Another city has decided to swap out Microsoft Office for the open source LibreOffice productivity suite. As ZDNet reported, the municipality of Bari in Italy is currently installing the open-source office software on its 1,700 PCs after a successful trial involving 100 PCs.
  • ODS Onsite Training - Onsite Training to the European Commission
    The course aims at enhancing the understanding of linked open data principles and technologies. By the end of the course, participants should have a clear understanding of what linked open data is and how linked data technologies can be applied to improve the availability, understandability and usability of EU data.