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Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

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  • The Business of Open Source Software

    Although open source software (OSS) has been around for decades, only within the past several years has there been a surge in its acceptance within the business world. Today, open source is perceived as a viable business alternative to commercial solutions, and is used by 64 percent of companies. Several factors have led to this shift in perception of OSS, including an evolving culture of software developers, undeniable business advantages, and, perhaps most importantly, the success of Linux—the leading open source operating system. The background of how and why the open source model has matured is also a key to understanding why organizations of all sizes continue to not only adopt OSS but to also actively support and contribute to open source projects.

  • Open Source Can Drive True Innovation and Growth

    To win in today’s market, in which disruptive startups and nimble competitors are advancing on all sides, digitizing the enterprise to inject greater agility and promote innovation is critical. You need to transform your operating model and reinvent products, services, and business processes and business functions across the entire enterprise. Undeniably, software is a central part of this transformation. And open-source software is leading the way, because what the digital era needs are “connected economies of expertise” that can capitalize on the power of our collaborative imagination.

  • Advice for building a career in open source

    Back in 1998 when I discovered Linux and open source, I never would have believed that I would make a career out of this. Back in those days I didn't have a clue about what I wanted to do, but I knew I wanted it to involve technology in some way.

    Since those dim distant days filled with teenage inexperience and ... well, hair ... I have learned so many things about what works and what doesn't in building a career in open source. So here are some broader principles I have learned that may be handy for those of you starting out on your journey. Irrespective of whether you want to be a programmer, community leader, documentation writer, entrepreneur, or something else, I think these principles will help in setting you up for success and differentiating you from the pack.

  • Google open-sources Parsey’s Cousins, a set of parsers for 40 more languages

    Google today is announcing that it’s open-sourcing pre-trained models for parsing text in 40 languages. Think of it as an extension of Google’s decision in May to open-source the interestingly named Parsey McParseface English-language parser. The new parsers are available on GitHub under an open-source Apache license.

    Parsing language might not sound like a big deal — it involves looking at a sentence and picking out the nouns, verbs, adjectives, and so on. But Parsey McParseface works at Google scale, that is to say it is very good, good enough for machines to use it to understand users’ web search queries. Researchers can now take advantage of the technology in more languages without worrying about where they’ll get the data for teaching the models.

  • Doha and the Supreme Court of DFSG Free

    So, it was a sheer stroke of luck that I met Mr. Bradley M. Kuhn who works with Karen Sandler on Software Conservancy. While I wanted to be there for his presentation, it was just one of those days which doesn’t go as planned. However, as we met socially and over e-mail there were two basic questions which I asked him which also imbibes why we need to fight for software freedom in the court of law. Below is a re-wording of what he shared .

    Q1. why do people think that GPL still needs to be challenged in the court of law while there are gpl-violations which has been more or less successfully defended in the court of law ?

  • Chrome 53 Beta: Shadow DOM, PaymentRequest, and Android autoplay
  • Chrome 53 Beta Brings Shadow DOM, Deprecates HTTP/0.9

    Google engineers today put out the first public beta of the upcoming Chrome/Chromium 53 web-browser update.

    Chrome 53 brings support for version one of the Shadow DOM API, introduces a PaymentRequest API, Chrome on Android can now auto-play muted videos, notification improvements, experimental work on the Web Bluetooth API, support for the text-size-adjust property, deprecating HTTP/0.9 in favor of HTTP/1.0, and a variety of other improvements.

  • SQLite Release 3.14 On 2016-08-08
  • SQLite 3.14 Released With CSV Virtual Table Support

    SQLite 3.14 is now available as the newest version of this popular, cross-platform, embed-able SQL database software.

    New to SQLite 3.14 is CSV virtual table support, which allows reading comma-separated value files. The CSV virtual table can then be interacted with as if its rows/columns were a native SQL table.

  • Nexenta to Present on Leveraging Lenovo Solutions with Open Source-Driven Software-Defined Storage at the Lenovo Server Roadshows
  • Medical Researchers Want Up To Five Years Exclusivity For Clinical Trial Data Derived From Volunteers

    A year ago, we wrote about how TPP's requirement for "data exclusivity" risked undermining one of science's fundamental principles: that facts cannot be owned. Data exclusivity is just the latest attempt by Big Pharma to extend its monopoly over drugs, whether using patents or other means. To a certain extent, you might expect that: after all, companies are designed to maximize profits, and if it means more people suffer or die along the way, well, that's regrettable but sort of beside the point. However, it's surprising to see a group of medical researchers writing in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) calling for just the same kind of data exclusivity. The post is in response to an earlier NEJM article by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), entitled "Sharing Clinical Trial Data"...

ETSI workshop on FRAND and open source controversy

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The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) is organising a workshop on the conundrum between FRAND intellectual property rights (patents) and open source software. The organisation, one of the key players in European standardisation, also hopes to increase cooperation with open source communities.

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Government FOSS Policy (US and NZ)

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  • Netflix Open Sources Another Time-Tested Tool

    We've reported before on Netflix open sourcing a series of interesting "Monkey" cloud tools as part of its "simian army," which it has deployed as a series satellite utilities orbiting its central cloud platform. These utilities are notable because they have been tested and hardened at Netflix. The company has also recently open sourced some machine learning tools.

    Now, in its latest open source move, Netflix is contribution what it calls a "traffic intuition tool" called Vizceral. This was previously called Flux, and here is more on it.

  • Vizceral Open Source
  • Black Duck cooks up extra security sauce [Ed: Black Duck is more like a Microsoft proxy that exploits FOSS to sell proprietary software. Black Duck was created by a Microsoft marketing person and by its own admission in order to mock the GPL and warn about it (classic Microsoft modus). Black Duck is trying to rewrite its history to gain acceptance in the FOSS world that it is actually exploiting/attacking to sell proprietary software. Don't feed Black Duck. It's yet another Trojan horse.]
  • Open Source Storage Announces NEW Global Cloud Platform [Ed: “Open Source Storage” is NOT Open Source. They’re misusing the label and OSI should stop them.]

OSS Leftovers

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  • 5 Ways to Repurpose an Old PC with Open Source Software

    Most small businesses refresh their desktops and laptops every three to five years, but that process brings up a thorny question: What should you do with the old equipment? Answer: learn how to repurpose old PCs and laptops.

    But wait; why not donate those old PCs and laptops to a local school or charity that could use them? After all, the hardware is still functional, just a little slow. However, donating old PCs to charity often isn't as easy as you might think.

  • OSVR Co-founder on the Future of Open Source Virtual Reality

    OSVR is an open source software platform and VR headset. Sensics and Razer launched OSVR 18 months ago with the intent of democratizing VR. Our goal is to provide an open alternative to walled-garden, single-device approaches.

  • Where’d My Map Go?

    The maps didn’t exactly break, but the base maps that they were built on (served up by MapQuest as a “tile set”) had disappeared. After six years of hosting and maintaining this open base map of the world, MapQuest chose to retire it, releasing new and enhanced base maps in their place, which will require a MapQuest account and usage plan.

  • Be in Command of the Hidden Costs in Open Source Content Management [Ed: This article is very poor because everything it says about FOSS is applicable to proprietary too. When articles create a distinguishing factor like "Open" [sic] versus "Commercial" [sic] you know they're not serious about a debate.]

    The most widespread accusations leveled against open source systems are about their lack of robustness and security concerns. The Whitehouse’s official website is built upon an open source content management system. How about that for robustness and security? Though an open source CMS is more cost-effective than a commercial one, enterprises must be wary of some latent cost drivers such as custom development, maintenance, and employee training. These factors could drive up the cost of operating an open source CMS beyond that of commercial software products. However, the cost drivers can be kept in check with astute preparation and proper planning.

White House and Free Software

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New options added to EOMA68 PC card crowdfunding campaign

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It’s been a little over a month since Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton launched a crowdfunding campaign to build a free and open source modular PC system which includes an EOMA68 PC card (with a processor, memory, and storage) and a series of accessories including desktop and laptop docks.

The campaign has raised over $60,000 so far, which is less than half way to the goal of $150,000. But Leighton tells me that if he raises around $100,000 he expects to be able to begin production of the items people are ordering: the higher dollar amount was chosen under the assumption that more people would be making pledges for higher-priced items.

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Is it really possible to cross-credit open source to open society?

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How much though of what is being talked about around open is a case of preaching to the choir?

The believers, perhaps you’d even occasionally call them zealots, will like to think open everything is ushering in a new world of altruism.

But I’ve seen it enough that if individuals or corporations can turn a dollar by closing down people’s options rather than opening them up…then they tend to win.

OS//OS is operating on the premise of if we build it, they will come. They may be right – and certainly without people to champion such principles, and bring such thinking out of the interweb and into the physical world (such as this conference), then skeptics like me will remain that way.

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More in Tux Machines

FoundationDB Source Code Shared

​Learn to use GitHub, ​GitHub Releases Atom 1.26

  • ​Learn to use GitHub with GitHub Learning Lab
    The most popular open-source development site in the world is GitHub. It's used by tens of millions of developers to work on over 80 million projects. It's not just a site where people use Linus Torvalds' Git open-source distributed version control system. It's also an online home for collaboration, a sandbox for testing, a launchpad for deployment, and a platform for learning new skills. The GitHub Training Team has now released an app, GitHub Learning Lab, so you can join the programming party. GitHub Learning Lab is not a tutorial or webcast. It's an app that gives you a hands-on learning experience within GitHub. According to GitHub, "Our friendly bot will take you through a series of practical, fun labs that will give you the skills you need in no time--and share helpful feedback along the way."
  • Atom 1.26
    Atom 1.26 has been released on our stable channel and includes GitHub package improvements, fuzzy-finder support for Teletype and file system watcher improvements.
  • Atom Hackable Text Editor Gets GitHub Package, Filesystem Watcher Improvements
    GitHub announced the release of the Atom 1.26 open-source and cross-platform hackable text editor for Linux, macOS, and Windows platforms with more improvements and bug fixes. In Atom 1.26, the GitHub package received various improvements and new features, among which we can mention the ability of the ’s Git pane to display a read-only list of recent commits for quick reference, and support for storing your GitHub username and password credentials in the Git authentication dialog.

Games Leftovers

Linux and Linux Foundation

  • V3D DRM Driver Steps Towards Mainline Kernel, Renamed From VC5
    The Broadcom VC5 driver stack is being renamed to V3D and developer Eric Anholt is looking at merging it into the mainline Linux kernel. The VC5 DRM/KMS and Mesa code has been for supporting the next-generation Broadcom VideoCore 5 graphics hardware that's only now beginning to appear in some devices, well, it seems one device so far. Though as I pointed out a few months back, there's already "VC6" activity going on too as the apparent successor to VC5 already being in development.
  • Azure Sphere Makes Microsoft an Arm Linux Player for IoT [Ed: Microsoft marketing at LF (only runs on/with Windows and Visual Studio etc.)]
  • Keynotes Announced for Automotive Linux Summit & OS Summit Japan [Ed: "Senior Software Engineer, Microsoft" in there; LF has once again let Microsoft infiltrate Linux events; in the words of Microsoft’s chief evangelist, “I’ve killed at least two Mac conferences. […] by injecting Microsoft content into the conference, the conference got shut down. The guy who ran it said, why am I doing this?”]
    Automotive Linux Summit connects those driving innovation in automotive Linux from the developer community with the vendors and users providing and using the code, in order to propel the future of embedded devices in the automotive arena.