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OSS

OSS: A Case for Open Source, SF Open Source Voting and More

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OSS
  • Interoperability: A Case for Open Source - GC@MC Commentary

    Catastrophe (cat) risk models are fundamental tools for insurers, reinsurers, emergency planners, urban planners, and every business or government entity impacted by natural catastrophes. Since their creation by commercial vendors, computerized models have been essential for risk selection, assessing capital adequacy and measuring profitability, and are critical in both the public and private sectors for catastrophe and emergency response management.

    “For over 25 years, these models have led us on a journey toward increased risk understanding,” says Peter Hearn, President and CEO, Guy Carpenter, “a journey that now continues with the availability of open source model environments. Clients and regulators alike want to bring transparency, increased competition, and lower costs to the existing ‘black box’ model so companies can develop their own view of risk.”

    “The challenge with the ‘black box’ model is people don’t understand the input and output, which are key decision-making variables for insurers and reinsurers.” He explains, “Insurers and reinsurers have a fiduciary obligation to understand their risks and the models used to evaluate that risk. Insurers must also be empowered to better communicate their risk management decisions to shareholders, policyholders and regulators. When companies can make more informed decisions, they are better stewards for the industry and can potentially offer more products and protection to the marketplace.”

  • SF Open Source Voting - September 2017 Update / Newsletter

    The 5-member, newly formed Open Source Voting System Technical Advisory Committee (OSVTAC) has now held two meetings at SF City Hall, and things are moving along quickly. The committee now has its own website (hosted on GitHub).

    At its second meeting, the committee approved the first iteration of its document of recommendations for the open source voting project. You can read the document online. Just like the committee's website, the recommendations are also hosted on GitHub. The recommendations are being developed in a way similar to how open-source software is developed. In addition to conventional methods like email, members of the public can also submit comments or suggested wording on GitHub, just like with open-source code. The committee will be able to discuss and vote on these suggestions at monthly meetings.

    One key difference from an open source project though is that because of state and local open meeting laws, committee members aren't allowed to collaborate as a group outside of noticed meetings. This approach of soliciting public feedback on GitHub is a bit like how the Whitehouse solicited feedback on its draft source code policy last year.

  • We need to talk about the social media silos

    I suppose with the rise of Google and especially Facebook, this has changed: Free software has lost the battle for nothing less than electronic communication between human beings to a proprietary behemoth, and it is already – exemplified in a very minor and random way by the Guaraní – doing serious damage to democracy, to freedom of speech and to civil society in general.

  • Presearch is building a blockchain-based search engine

    Presearch is a Canadian crypto-startup building a blockchain-based search engine to take on Google. It is officially described as a decentralized search engine powered by the community.

    As with crypto-starttups, the company is giving everybody the opportunity to get in on the ground floor by way of a token sale. Actually, this is the Lot 3 token sale, and each token is going for $0.15 USD, and you can get those after you create an account using BTC, ETH, or USD.

Outreachy Winter 2017

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OSS
  • Applications for winter Outreachy internships open
  • Outreachy Begins Soliciting For 2017 Winter Internships

    With the Outreachy Summer 2017 internship period wrapping up, the application period has opened for the Outreachy Winter 2017 internship program.

    If you are looking to get involved with free software development but missed out on a past Outreachy round or Google Summer of Code, the winter internship period is running from now through 23 Ocober for applications. For those accepted, the actual program runs from 5 December to 5 March 2018. Those participating are paid $5,500 USD plus a $500 travel stipend.

Events: GUADEC 2017, Kubernetes Webinar, and Ceph Meetup Berlin

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OSS
  • GUADEC 2017

    GUADEC 2017 was held in Manchester, UK. I was really exited about it, because UK is a country that I was looking forward to paying a visit to.

  • Kubernetes for the Enterprise: 1, 2, 3, Go!
  • Ceph Meetup Berlin

    I will give a presentation at the next Ceph Meetup in Berlin on the 18th of September. It will be about a exciting project we work on, at Deutsche Telekom, since a while. The goal of this open source project called librmb is to store emails directly in Ceph RADOS instead of using e.g. a NAS system.

OSS: TraneAi, Openwashing, and RISC-V

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OSS
  • TraneAi To Launch ICO for $50M in Tokens to Seed the First Open-Source AI-Development Ecosystem Built on Blockchain

    TraneAi, an emerging player in the rapidly expanding artificial-intelligence market, today announced that it will offer the sale of $50 million in tokens to seed the first decentralized, open-source AI-development ecosystem built on Blockchain technology.

    TraneAi will use funds raised to build out an ecosystem that allows participants around the globe to collaborate to develop AI-powered solutions such as chatbots, virtual assistants, news generators and other intelligent systems. The initial focus will be to decentralize the AI-training process for more rapid innovation. The ecosystem will run on the Transaction Protocol for Artificial Intelligence, or TPAI, which governs how participants interact with each other and is open source so anyone can participate.

  • Windows DevOps shops quickly gain on Linux counterparts [Ed: This merely cites cPrime as source (never heard of them); Microsoft ad? Never mind the fact that DevOps is a pretty meaningless term that's used by marketing firms.]
  • Facebook Announces 1.0 Release of Open Source JavaScript Package Manager, Yarn
  • Yarn 1.0 simplifies JavaScript dependency management
  • SiFive and UltraSoC partner to accelerate RISC-V development through DesignShare

    The DesignShare concept enables an entirely new range of applications. Companies like SiFive, UltraSoC and other ecosystem partners have developed efficient, pre-integrated solutions to lower the upfront engineering costs required to bring a custom chip design based on the SiFive Freedom platform to realization. The partnership between SiFive, originator of the industry's first open-source chip platform, and UltraSoC, the industry leader in vendor-neutral on-chip debug and analytics tools, significantly strengthens the ecosystem surrounding RISC-V, the open source processor specification which is often dubbed "the Linux of the semiconductor industry."

OSS: Streamlio, OpenStack Pike, Apache Kafka, Faces of Open Source, and More

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OSS
  • Streamlio bundles open-source projects into real-time streaming engine for enterprises

    Startup Streamlio Inc. is betting that organizations are ready for real-time streaming architectures to process their basic data needs, and now it has brought three of the latest open-source technologies to bear on the process.

    The company’s new real-time analytics suite incorporates the Apache Pulsar publish-and-subscribe engine with Heron, a real-time, distributed, fault-tolerant stream processing engine originally developed at Twitter Inc. and Apache BookKeeper, a low-latency storage service designed for real-time workloads. The combination is “the only enterprise-grade messaging solution optimized for streaming and storage,” said Streamlio co-founder and Chief Executive Lewis Kaneshiro.

  • Google, Pivotal partner to wield open-source, build consistent target for cloud developers

    Working across clouds can be a tricky business. A company’s clouds might come from different providers, run in private or in public, or just be highly customized to work with mission-critical legacy applications.

  • OpenStack Pike Cloud Platform Still Provides AWS Compatibility Layer

    The latest release of the OpenStack cloud platform landed on Aug. 30 with the debut of OpenStack Pike. While there are many incremental feature improvements in Pike, there is at least one key feature noteworthy in that it hasn't been removed. That feature is Amazon Web Services (AWS) API compatibility.

    Though the OpenStack Foundation and its member companies rarely talk about AWS compatibility, it's a feature OpenStack has long supported.

  • 3 industries relying on Apache Kafka

    Apache Kafka is a distributed publish-subscribe messaging system designed to be fast, scalable, and durable. It provides a unified, high-throughput, low-latency platform for handling real-time data feeds and has a storage layer that is essentially a massively scalable pub/sub message queue architected as a distributed transaction log. That architecture makes Kafka, which was originally developed by LinkedIn and made open source in early 2011, highly valuable for enterprise infrastructures to process streaming data.

    Originally, Kafka was built for website activity tracking—capturing all the clicks, actions, or inputs on a website and enabling multiple "consumers" to subscribe to real-time updates of that information. Now, however, companies in internet services, financial services, entertainment, and other industries have adapted Kafka's massively scalable architecture and applied it to valuable business data.

  • The Faces of Open Source: Jim Wright

    Jim is a powerhouse of knowledge in open source. He is fully versed in technical issues and deeply experienced in legal matters, both visible immediately in his quick, easy and comprehensive commentary around virtually any open source-related subject. Our discussion was framed by the same three questions as all the others in season one: how did he enter open source? what was the most interesting thing he observed? what did he think we should keep our eyes open for in the next 12 to 24 months? What stood out is perhaps how Jim tied his answers to the longer history of open source itself, and framed his answers in the content of our 20 plus year evolution as a community.

    One thing that Jim’s interview highlighted was that there was plenty of scope for deeper, more comprehensive interviews as we explored open source law, and he helped set the tone that would see a decision to shoot long-form interviews in the forthcoming series two.

  • FOSScamp Syros 2017 – day 3

    The 3rd day should have started with a Debian sprint and then a LibreOffice one, taking advantage I’m still attending, as that’s my last day. But plans don’t always work out and we started 2 hours later. When everybody arrive we got everyone together for a short daily meeting (scrum style). The people were divided to 3 teams for translating:  Debian Installer, LibreOffice and Gnome. For each team we did a short list of what left and with what to start. And in the end – how does what so there will be no toe stepping. I was really proud with this and felt it was time well spent.

  • Open Source EHR Generator Delivers Healthcare Big Data with FHIR

    Healthcare data analysts frustrated by the lack of access to large volumes of clean, trusted, and complete patient data can now take advantage of an open source EHR data generator platform called Synthea.

    One million synthetic patient records are currently available within the free online system, which uses HL7 FHIR to allow access to standardized datasets that mimic real electronic health records. 

    The wealth of easily accessible data may be a boon for the growing fields of machine learning and artificial intelligence, which require access to significant amounts of big data in order to train for clinical decision support, predictive analytics, and other patient care applications.

  • Court Ruling Adds New Power to Open Source Licenses

    Any organization using open source source software should make sure there is a strong open source policy in place that dots the "I"s and crosses the "T"s. Why? Because open source licenses recently became even more enforceable than they were already.

    For some time case law has made them enforceable in copyright cases. Now, with a federal district court ruling in Artifex vs. Hancom, they're clearly enforceable in contract disputes as well.

    First a little history.

    For a long time after Richard Stallman penned the first General Public License in 1989, there was a cloud with a question mark inside hanging over all open source projects. No one knew whether the license would be legally enforceable. When consulted, legal eagles were pretty much in agreement that they should be enforceable -- with the caveat that lawyers and judges have sometimes disagreed on seemingly clear points of law. Until there was a court case centered on their enforceability, they said, open source projects were in limbo.

  • Licensing woes

    On releasing modified versions of GPLv3 software in binary form only...

Next US Elections: Open Source vs. Commercial Software?

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OSS

Meanwhile, the city this year will pay Dominion Voting Systems $2.3 million to renew its contract for the company's proprietary voting machine software. That system is nearing the end of its life cycle.

Officials hope a move to open source will make San Francisco's voting software more transparent and secure, as well as less costly. The expectation is that an open source voting machine program would offer more security against hack attacks. If the city should develop its own system, it then could provide the code to other cities.

Read more

Openwashing and Fakes

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Microsoft
OSS

OSS: CyberArk, Eric Raymond, Ohio Supercomputer Center, and TraneAi

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OSS
  • CyberArk Launches Open Source Secrets Management Solution for DevOps
  • Eric S. Raymond: Heirloom Software: the Past as Adventure

    Through the years, I've spent what might seem to some people an inordinate amount of time cleaning up and preserving ancient software. My Retrocomputing Museum page archives any number of computer languages and games that might seem utterly obsolete. 

    [...]

     For a work of art that was the first of its genre, ADVENT's style seems in retrospect startlingly mature. The authors weren't fumbling for an idiom that would later be greatly improved by later artists more sure of themselves; instead, they achieved a consistent (and, at the time, unique) style that would be closely emulated by pretty much everyone who followed them in text adventures, and not much improved on as style even though the technology of the game engines improved by leaps and bounds, and the range of subjects greatly widened.

  • Ohio Supercomputer Center Releases Open Source HPC Access Portal

    An innovative web-based portal for accessing high performance computing services has matured beyond the beta phase and now is available to HPC centers worldwide.The Ohio Supercomputer Center (OSC) has launched Open OnDemand 1.0, an open-source version of OSC OnDemand, the Center’s online, single-point-of-entry application for HPC services.

  • Ready, Set, $50M ICO! TraneAi Funding Open Source AI-Training Blockchain Ecosystem

    TraneAi, an emerging player in the rapidly expanding artificial-intelligence market, announced that it will offer the sale of $50 million in tokens to seed its decentralized, open-source AI-development ecosystem built on blockchain technology.

CyberArk open-sources Conjur

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OSS
Security
  • CyberArk open-sources Conjur

    Security vendor CyberArk has released an open-source version of its Conjur secrets management software.

    CyberArk Conjur enables DevOps teams to automatically secure and manage secrets used by machines and users to protect containerised and cloud-native applications across the DevOps pipeline, company officials said.

  • Open-source stewardship key as CyberArk moves to help devs avoid another Heartbleed

    Conjur’s credential-management technology includes specific functionality for securely managing ‘secrets’ – access keys, privileged account credentials, API keys, and other sensitive information – and Lawler expects that the release of CyberArk Conjur Community Edition to the open-source community will drive a flurry of innovation that will further raise the level of open-source security overall.

Free Software and Open Access

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OSS
  • Coinbase’s GDAX announces open source library of cryptocurrency trading tools

    San Francisco-based Coinbase has announced that its professional based exchange Global Digital Asset Exchange (GDAX) has introduced the ‘GDAX Trading Toolkit (GTT)’ an open source library for trading digital currency across a variety of exchanges.

    The GTT provides a suite of tools for traders to design, create, and operate trading features such as automated trading bots and personal portfolio trackers.

  • The Washington Post starts using Talk, an open-source tool for improving online comments

    An open-source tool called Talk is being rolled out on The Washington Post website starting today (6 September), to help reimagine the online commenting experience for both the newsroom and readers.

    The tool is developed by The Coral Project, a joint initiative from Mozilla, Washington Post and The New York Times, initially supported by the Knight Foundation and funded by the Democracy Fund, the Rita Allen Foundation, and Mozilla.

    Talk is currently live on three sections on washingtonpost.com – business, politics and The Switch blog. Over the coming weeks, it will become more widely available on The Washington Post, and other organisations such as Fairfax Media titles in Australia will start using it.

    The tool, which launched in beta in March and is currently on its third version, can be installed by any newsroom using the available documentation, and more features are being added regularly.

  • European Libraries’ Five Principles For Open Access Negotiations With Publishers

    European research libraries have issued five principles for libraries to use when holding open access negotiations with publishers, seeking to prevent over-charging and promote transparency and sustainable access.

  • Open educational resources can offer relief from high textbook prices

    Timbo X. Spartan is your typical MSU student. He goes to Economics 201 and Spanish 202 on Monday and Wednesday, and ISS 215 and Accounting 201 on Tuesday and Thursday.

    According to the Student Book Store's current listings, the required texts for these courses would have our friend Timbo spending $100 on economics, $88 on Spanish, $160 on the ISS course and $187 on accounting. This adds up to $535 in materials for one semester.

    Of course, this is all hypothetical, but not unrealistic. Chemical engineering sophomore Megan Richardson has spent more than $400 on materials for classes this semester and isn't finished shopping yet.

    "Last year I spent close to $300 on one chemistry textbook," Richardson said. "This is on the higher end of what I've spent so far, but yeah. It's kind of ridiculous."

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