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Desktop Obsessions, Steam Sacrifices, and LibreOffice Review

We've been reading a lot about the desktop lately and we're not stopping tonight. We have three stories tonight on the desktop. In other news, the kernel repositories beef-up security and Alienware says Steam Machine users will "sacrifice content for the sake of Linux." The new Linux version of Opera is making progress and CNet has a review of LibreOffice 4.3. This and more in tonight's Linux news. Read more

Black Hat 2014: Open Source Could Solve Medical Device Security

On the topic of source code liability, Greer suggests that eventually software developers, including medical device development companies, will be responsible for the trouble their software causes (or fails to prevent). I think it’s fair to say that it is impossible to guarantee a totally secure system. You cannot prove a negative statement after all. Given enough time, most systems can be breached. So where does this potential liability end? What if my company has sloppy coding standards, no code reviews, or I use a third-party software library that has a vulnerability? Should hacking be considered foreseeable misuse? Read more

Does government finally grok open source?

Yes, the government -- one U.S. federal government employee told me that government IT tends to be "stove-piped," with people "even working within the same building" not having much of a clue what their peers are doing, which is not exactly the open source way. That's changing. One way to see this shift is in government policies. For the U.S. federal government, there is now a "default to open," a dramatic reversal on long-standing practices of spending heavily with a core of proprietary technology vendors. Read more

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