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Leftovers: OSS

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  • Flexibase, the platform behind Code4Health, goes open source

    Flexibase, the building blocks behind NHS’s Code4Health programme, is now publicly available under the Open Source license, it was announced on Thursday morning.

    It can be downloaded via Github, the public code repository, and will also soon be available on Docker hub.

  • Sysdig raises $15M for its open-source Docker monitoring tool

    Since Docker is still relatively new to the enterprise, adopters have fewer monitoring tools to choose from than an organization using traditional virtualization software. But the gap is closing rapidly thanks to providers like Sysdig Inc., which today announced the completion of a $15 million funding round led by Accel Partners and Bain Capital Ventures.

  • This open source tool from MIT Data Lab will change how you see big data

    In the early days of big data, "everyone scrambled to collect and store as much data as they could," said Datawheel co-founder Dave Landry. "In most cases, they didn't develop the tools needed to better understand that data. That's the challenge we are trying to tackle."

    The rise of the mobile web, IoT, and APIs and modern databases paved the way for big data innovations. Everything in the world can be quantified, and those who scraped and logged early often benefitted from first-mover advantage. By making information easier to access and visualize, Landry said, big data can help businesses make faster and more intelligent decisions.

  • BSD at LinuxFest Northwest

    This weekend, the Grand Old Man (or Woman — take your pick) of Linux expos in North America takes place in the upper left corner of the United States.

    For over a decade and a half, LinuxFest Northwest has flown the flag literally in Microsoft’s backyard, an annual open source event held the last weekend in April in Bellingham, Wash. LFNW features presentations and exhibits on various free and open source topics, as well as Linux distributions and applications. It usually has something for everyone from the novice to the professional.

    It has a special place in my heart as well. While I think that SCALE is the best show on the continent for obvious reasons (the SCALE Publicity Team is solely responsible, he says in jest), LFNW is my favorite show to attend, not only because of the history but because of the community vibe the show gives off at an expo that has refused to give in to the creeping corporatism to which other shows have succumbed.

  • ‘Follow My Vote’ Launches Kickstarter Campaign for Revolutionizing Open-source Blockchain Voting Software
  • Allura Joins Numerous Projects Advancing at Apache

    The Apache Software Foundation, which incubates more than 350 open source projects and initiatives, has squarely turned its focus to Big Data and developer-focused tools in recent months. The organization has recently elevated a number of incubated projects o Top-Level Status, which helps them get both advanced stewardship and certainly far more contributions.

  • DHS Claims Open Source Software Is Like Giving The Mafia A Copy Of FBI Code; Hastily Walks Back Statement

    Late last week, the DHS's Chief Information Officer Luke McCormack (or someone from his office) posted comments to GitHub arguing against the proposed policy of making 20% of its code (whatever that means) open source in the interest of better sharing between agencies. The rationale is that shared code could save tax dollars by preventing paying developers to perform redundant work. The DHS felt strongly about this and said as much using an Excel-based parade of horrors.

  • Pieter Hintjens: A Living Obituary

    I first came across Pieter Hintjens 20 years ago, in 1996. He posted to a UseNet group I followed (comp.lang.perl.announce; later announcement), about a tool he had created -- Libero -- which could translate state machine descriptions into runnable code, in multiple languages.

    Libero caught my attention because I was in the middle of finishing a Computer Science degree with a focus on computational theory. So I built it for OS/2, which I was using at the time, and sent Pieter email. He responded by asking if I would be interested in porting SFL, the iMatix Standard Function Library, to OS/2. By the end of 1996 and the turn of 1997 we were exchanging emails about porting SFL to OS/2.

  • Chromium Bug Tracker Now Open Source

    Chromium is Google's open source browser, which shares much of its core browser code with Chrome, Google's proprietary product. Now Monorail, the Chromium bug tracker, has been made open source.

  • How to become an advanced contributor to OpenStack

    At the OpenStack Summit taking place this month in Austin, Texas, Ildikó aims to do just that. In her talk, How to Become an Advanced Contributor, she will guide attendees through the steps of navigating the community, including some of the principles, best practices and unwritten rules of contributing to OpenStack.

    We caught up with Ildikó before her talk to learn a little bit more about some of the barriers to becoming an effective contributor and how to overcome them.

  • Firebird 3.0 Open-Source Database Released
  • Free The Schools!

    They still keep a few machines with TOOS for compatibility and whiteboards. My advice? Stick with projectors and Gromit and the latest version of LibreOffice. I would use Debian rather than Mint. Further, to reduce the capital costs and maintenance, use ARMed thin clients and a GNU/Linux terminal server.

  • Acer Joins Open Source Virtual Reality (OSVR) Platform

    Back in January, gaming peripheral and PC company Razer made a splash by announcing the birth of the Open Source Virtual Reality initiative, OSVR for short, at CES. The initiative, set to include a virtual reality peripheral as the hardware development kit, will boast compatibility with most existing computer systems rather than making users meet the beefy requirements of the HTC Vive or the Oculus Rift. The framework is, of course, open-source and can be used by any developer. Partners that sign on early, however, will play a key part in shaping the platform and helping it find its place in the mainstream VR space in the near future. According to a press release from Razer regarding OSVR, the system currently has over 350 partners, of whom the newest is computer and smartphone manufacturer Acer.

  • Acer puts its bets on open-source VR, touts support for Razer’s OSVR in latest gaming PCs

    On Thursday morning, Acer held its 2016 Global Press Conference in New York City, revealing a number of new products that should get your mouth watering. One of the announcements made during the event is that Acer plans to use technology in devices and computers that support the Open Source Virtual Reality (OSVR) platform. The latter solutions will actually be packed with Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 980 and Titan graphics processors, making them compatible with today’s VR products on the market.

Exponential growth of R's open source community threatens commercial competitors

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Open source tends to work in disciplines with a broad talent pool of people with an interest in and aptitude for sharing code. This describes the R community quite well: a technical community with the ability to build R packages and a natural propensity to share that work. And at the rate that the R community shares, it's hard to see how any single commercial entity can hope to compete long term.

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The US Government and Open-Source Software

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As part of the "Second Open Government National Action Plan", the federal government is planning to share the source code behind many of its software projects.

To begin with, the plans call for federal agencies to share code with each other. This will help reduce development costs when government departments each work on the same functionality independently. Solving the same problem twice (or more often) is expensive and a waste of taxpayer's money.

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$20 WiFi-enabled IoT module runs FreeRTOS on Cortex-M4

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Designed to run the open source FreeRTOS, this latest LinkIt is the first to come in the form of a full hardware development kit (HDK), says MediaTek. While the other LinkIt boards, including some other RTOS-driven models (see farther below) are stripped-down SBCs similar to computer-on-modules, and ready to slot into commercial devices, the LinkIt 7687 HDK is more of a development and prototyping board.

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Leftovers: OSS and Sharing

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  • How British Gas Connected Home is moving beyond Hive and managing an “explosion” of IoT data using an open-source Apache stack

    Connected Home, the IoT offshoot of British Gas, knew it wanted an open source solution for its vastly growing pool of data and connected devices, now its looking at how to leverage this technology for its customers

    For anyone that watches television or listens to the radio in the UK, Hive is the connected thermostat device British Gas advertises with a catchy jingle which: “Controls your heating, from your phone.”

    What they won’t be aware of is the explosion of data a connected device like Hive drives back to its parent company, Connected Home, a business unit launched by British Gas in 2012 to operate along lean, start-up principles.

  • Small Business Project Management Software: A Look at ProjectLibre

    Change happens in every business. Whether it's a move to a new office, a new product launch, or a total restructuring, careful planning is essential to execute changes smoothly. But why use project management software?

    While it's possible to manage a small project with an Excel worksheet, small business project management software is a smarter choice. It helps you identify all the required tasks, allocate those tasks to the right people, and make sure your people complete those tasks on time.

  • Modeling Avengers: Open Source Technology Mix for Saving the World

    Cedric Brun is the CTO of Obeo, leads the EcoreTools and Amalgamation components, maintains the Modeling Package, and is a committer on Sirius, Acceleo, Mylyn. Benoit Combemale is an associate professor at the University of Rennes, and is a research computer scientist at IRISA and INRIA. He is co-author of two books, and a member of the ACM and the IEEE.

  • Open Source Blockchain Effort for the Enterprise

    The Hyperledger Project today is also announcing ten new companies are joining the effort and investing in the future of an open blockchain ledger: Blockstream, Bloq, eVue Digital Labs, Gem, itBit, Milligan Partners, Montran Labs,, Tequa Creek Holdings and Thomson Reuters.

  • #LGM16

    Today I want to tell you about a conference that I really wanted to go to for 2 reasons: 1 – it was about open source graphics, 2 – it was in London =) You probably guessed it – it’s Libre Graphics Meeting.

  • Analyzing gender diversity in the OpenStack community

    Daniel Izquierdo, co-founder of software development analytics provider Bitergia, has been analyzing data for his upcoming talk at OpenStack Summit in Austin.

  • Slovenia modelling new eHealth services

    To build the data model, the researchers used OpenEHR - publicly developed specifications for health information systems and building clinical models. The tool is user-friendly for both medical experts and IT specialists, says Rant. “OpenEHR helps both groups to understand one another, improving collaboration.”

  • Friday Free Software Directory IRC meetup: April 22nd
  • Finland organises hackathon on government budget

    “We want to inspire a broad range of experts, including economists, social scientists, behavioural scientists, designers, and of course software developers”, the ministry explains in its introduction. “We believe that the budget needs to be looked at in many different ways, and that combining different kinds of knowledge and experience, produce the best results.”

  • Study: Cross-border eGov services low on agenda

    Cross-border eGovernment services score low on national policy agendas, according to a study on cross-border cooperation between the Nordic countries. Well-organised, national eID infrastructures are not interconnected, the report says.

  • Ukrainian Parliament to become more open

    Launched in 2012, the Declaration on Parliamentary Openness is a set of shared principles “on the openness, transparency and accessibility of parliaments supported by more than 140 organizations from over 75 countries”, said, the project’s platform. defines itself as “a call to national parliaments, and sub-national and transnational legislative bodies, by civil society parliamentary monitoring organizations (PMOs) for an increased commitment to openness and to citizen engagement in parliamentary work”.

  • A Cycling Map

    For a couple of years now, I have been mapping the rural roads around here in OpenStreetMap. This has been an interesting process.

  • Serious About 3D Modeling Software? Take a Look at ImplicitCAD—Powerful, Open Source, & Centered Around 3D Printing
  • ANSI Event highlights business impact on standardization.
  • Free April ANSI Event requires advance registration.

Yvelines school completes switch to free software

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The primary school in Saint Léger en Yvelines (France) has nearly completely switched to using free software, reports the village’s deputy mayor Olivier Guillard. “Do not underestimate the task”, he advises others on the forum of Etalab, France’s open government portal, “and most of all, persist.”

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OSS Funding

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  • Open-Source Project Secretly Funded by CIA

    It's fair to say that the interests of governments and the FOSS community are not always aligned. That's not to say that the US government is out to crush every FOSS project or that every FOSS user is on a secret mission to destroy the government. Nonetheless, the relationship is often a strained one.

    So it shouldn't be surprising that the Open Source community gets a little restless when it learns that the government has its hands in an open-source project—particularly when we discover it's secretly pouring money into the pockets of developers to develop features it requires. And, when the government agency in question is the CIA—well, you can understand why some feathers are rustled.

    It shouldn't be surprising to learn that the CIA is a big investor in tech development. After all, if there's one thing we've learned from spy movies and TV, it's that spies love their gadgets.

    But although the movies may show us scenes of secret underground laboratories, the truth is that developing technology from scratch is expensive. Just like any large organization, the CIA usually prefers to use an off-the-shelf solution when it's available. But what does it do when the solution it needs isn't ready to ship? What if the team developing the project is struggling to secure the funding it needs to bring its product to the market?

  • Refactoring open source business models

    They say you never forget your first. In my case it was 2008 and Lucidworks had just raised our Series A round and hired our first salesperson. I was asked to jump on a call with a prospective client looking for help troubleshooting Apache Solr. During the call, the prospect asked me a number of "stump the chump" style questions. After hanging up and patting myself on the back for answering all their questions with flying colors, I got a call from my salesperson.


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Diamanti and containers

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  • Diamanti exists stealth with a converged appliance for running containers

    One of the main reasons behind the popularity of containers is that they make it much easier to deploy applications than traditional virtualization software. But the technology doesn’t live up to the promise all the time, especially when it comes to enterprise workloads with complex operational requirements. A newly launched startup called Diamanti Inc. is trying to address the challenge with a converged appliance that automates much of the implementation process, starting with the initial hardware configuration.

  • Diamanti thinks it has a way to make open source containers pay

    Containers are a big deal, threatening to upend the comfortable world of virtualization. But as impressive as containers, the technology, has been, the business of making containers pay is still in its toddler phase.

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More in Tux Machines

Mozilla: Facebook-Mozilla Rift, MDN, No More Notifications (If You Want)

  • Mozilla stops Facebook advertising, demands privacy changes
    It’s probably not top of Mark Zuckerberg’s worry list this week but Mozilla Corporation, developer of the Firefox browser, is officially unhappy with Facebook.
  • Results of the MDN “Competitive Content Analysis” SEO experiment
    The next SEO experiment I’d like to discuss results for is the MDN “Competitive Content Analysis” experiment. In this experiment, performed through December into early January, involved selecting two of the top search terms that resulted in MDN being included in search results—one of them where MDN is highly-placed but not at #1, and one where MDN is listed far down in the search results despite having good content available. The result is a comparison of the quality of our content and our SEO against other sites that document these technology areas. With that information in hand, we can look at the competition’s content and make decisions as to what changes to make to MDN to help bring us up in the search rankings.
  • No More Notifications (If You Want)
    Online, your attention is priceless. That’s why every site in the universe wants permission to send you notifications about new stuff. It can be distracting at best and annoying at worst. The latest version of Firefox for desktop lets you block those requests and many others.

EUPL planned actions

A revised set of guidelines and recommendations on the use of the open source licence EUPL v1.2 published by the Commission on 19 May 2017 will be developed, involving the DIGIT unit B.3 (Reusable Solutions) and the JRC 1.4 (Joint Research Centre – Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer). The existing licence wizard will be updated. New ways of promoting public administrations' use of open source will be investigated and planned (such as hackathons or app challenges on open source software). The target date for the release of this set of guidelines on the use of the European Public Licence EUPL v1.2, including a modified Licence Wizard, is planned Q2 2018. Read more

Security: Dropbox, FUD, CNCF, 'Cloud'

  • Dropbox has some genuinely great security reporting guidelines, but reserves the right to jail you if you disagree

    Dropbox's position, however reasonable in many of its aspects, is woefully deficient, because the company reserves the right to invoke DMCA 1201 and/or CFAA and other tools that give companies the power to choose who can say true things abour mistakes they've made.

    This is not normal. Before DRM in embedded software and cloud connectivity, became routine there were no restrictions on who could utter true words about defects in a product. [...]

  • Hackers Infect Linux Servers With Monero Miner via 5-Year-Old Vulnerability [Ed: A five-year-old vulnerability implies total neglect by sysadmins, not a GNU/Linux weakness]
    Attackers also modified the local cron jobs to trigger a "watchd0g" Bash script every three minutes, a script that checked to see if the Monero miner was still active and restarted XMRig's process whenever it was down.
  • GitHub: Our dependency scan has found four million security flaws in public repos [Ed: No, GitHub just ran a scan for old versions being used and reused. It cannot do this for proprietary software, but the issues are there and the risks are no better.]
    GitHub says its security scan for old vulnerabilities in JavaScript and Ruby libraries has turned up over four million bugs and sparked a major clean-up by project owners. The massive bug-find total was reached within a month of the initiative's launch in November, when GitHub began scanning for known vulnerabilities in certain popular open-source libraries and notifying project owners that they should be using an updated version.
  • Envoy CNCF Project Completes Security Audit, Delivers New Release
    The Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) has begun a process of performing third-party security audits for its projects, with the first completed audit coming from the Envoy proxy project. The Envoy proxy project was created by ride-sharing company Lyft and officially joined the CNCF in September 2017. Envoy is a service mesh reverse proxy technology that is used to help scale micro-services data traffic.
  • Hybrid cloud security: Emerging lessons [Ed: 'Cloud' and security do not belong in the same headline because 'cloud' is a data breach, typically involving a company giving all its (and customers') data to some spying giant abroad]

A Look At The Relative Spectre/Meltdown Mitigation Costs On Windows vs. Linux

The latest in our Windows versus Linux benchmarking is looking at the relative performance impact on both Linux and Windows of their Spectre and Meltdown mitigation techniques. This round of tests were done on Windows 10 Pro, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, and Clear Linux when having an up-to-date system on each OS where there is Spectre/Meltdown protection and then repeating the same benchmarks after reverting/disabling the security functionality. Read more