In 1996, the term "open source" didn't exist. Yet 20 years later, open source technology spans countless projects and brings together the collective talent of millions. Take a close look at any open source project or community of developers and you'll find incredible levels of speed, innovation, and agility.
Open source participation varies wildly. Some developers devote their professional lives to open source software projects; others contribute their time and talent as an avocation. While the communities behind the software continue to grow, the technology itself is playing both a foundational role in the most important technology developments of the past 20 years and is also an integral role in the strategies powering many of today's leading organizations.
To find out more, we interviewed two leaders in this emerging field. Specifically, we wanted to know how Linux and open source software are being used and if they are in fact changing the face of the automotive industry. First, we talk to Alison Chaiken, a software engineer at Peloton Technology and an expert on automotive Linux, cybersecurity, and transparency. She previously worked for Mentor Graphics, Nokia, and the Stanford Linear Accelerator. Then, we chat with Steven Crumb, executive director of GENIVI, who got started in open source in high-performance computing environments (supercomputers and early cloud computing). He says that though he's not a coder anymore, he loves to help organizations solve real business problems with open source software.
SeeedStudio informed Softpedia about the availability of a new single-board computer (SBC) called SeeedStudio BeagleBone Green Wireless, the first BeagleBone board with built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE).
The Screenly signage software for the Raspberry Pi is being converted to Ubuntu Snappy Core, enabling OTA updates and transactional rollbacks.
Canonical and Screenly, which makes what it calls “the most popular digital signage solution for the Raspberry Pi,” have announced a partnership to build the Screenly signage stack on Ubuntu Snappy Core. Screenly, which is currently available in commercial (Pro) and free, open source “OSE” versions based on Raspbian Linux, is adopting the lightweight, transaction-oriented Ubuntu Core “to give its customers a stable platform that is secure, robust, simple to use and manage,” says Screenly.
We reported at the beginning of the year that the GNOME developers are working hard on a completely redesigned UI of the GNOME Control Center application, which might land in the upcoming GNOME 3.22 desktop environment.
The Solus developers are having the time of their lives these days as part of a new, online event called Solus Hackfest 1.2, where the operating system's developers are trying to implement new features to the upcoming Solus 1.2 release.
The Btrfs and F2FS file-system updates were submitted this weekend for the Linux 4.7 kernel merge window.
The Btrfs pull request from Chris Mason mentions, "Has our merge window series of cleanups and fixes. These target a wide range of issues, but do include some important fixes for qgroups, O_DIRECT, and fsync handling. Jeff Mahoney moved around a few definitions to make them easier for userland to consume. Also whiteout support is included now that issues with overlayfs have been cleared up."
Over the years, I have written a tool to cross-compile software under a GNU/Linux OS for other targets: crossroad. Well to this day, the only supported targets are Windows 32/64-bit. I realized I never advertised this tool much which — even though it has been originally built to help me build and hack a specific project (GIMP) — ended up as a generic cross-compilation system for Linux.
PostgreSQL has this nifty feature called composite types that you can use to create your own types from the built-in PostgreSQL types. It’s a bit like hstore, only structured, which makes it great for structured data that you might reuse multiple times in a model, like addresses.
Unfortunately to date, they were pretty much a pain to use in Django. There were some older implementations for versions of Django before 1.7, but they tended to do things like create surprise new objects in the namespace, not be migrateable, and require connection to the DB at any time (i.e. during your build).
Developers behind the Glasgow Haskell Compiler announced their first "super-major version" of the compiler in six years.
Today, May 23, 2016, the Q4OS development team informs Softpedia about the immediate availability for download of a new stable update for their GNU/Linux operating system, Q4OS 1.4.10 "Orion."
The last update for the Orion branch has been released in the first week of April 2016, based on the Debian GNU/Linux 8.4 "Jessie" operating system, the latest Trinity Desktop Environment (TDE), and introducing the "Bourbon" Start Menu, a two-panel, highly customizable Applications menu.
It did not even hit the stable channel, and the upcoming Manjaro Linux 16.06 "Daniella" operating system has received its first update pack, for the Release Candidate build.
Yes, you're reading it right, Manjaro Linux 16.06 RC1 got its first update pack, which brings the Release Candidate version of the highly anticipated Pamac 4.1 graphical package manager, featuring an updated user interface that promises to fit your needs, as well as fixes for most of the bugs reported by users.
World’s first Linux powered Zumwalt destroyer will be seen in action after US navy acquires it for $3 billion
The Navy’s future is looking even brighter with the new Zumwalt Destroyer. The deal made to complete the transaction was a hefty one, as it took a total of $3 billion USD to deliver the destroyer, along with an additional $600 million as a token of appreciation. The Zumwalt Destroyer has been made with stealth and automation in mind.
A few days ago, Google announced that Chromebooks will soon be able to run Android apps from the Google Play app store, finally making them fully capable computers and putting them in a position to put a real dent in Apple and Microsoft's dominance in PCs.
After years of hinting that the lines between Android and Chrome OS were getting thinner and blurrier, Google recently announced that Chromebooks would soon be able to run just about any Android app. The Google Play Store will be available for three Chromebooks with touchscreen displays starting in June, and the list of Chrome OS laptops, desktops, and other devices that will gain access to Android apps is pretty long… and expected to get longer.
Fancy, a portable desktop computer Running Chromium OS, Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and Android TV and powered by AMD 5350 Quad-Core x86 processor
Imagine a desktop computer, that too a portable one, being run on both Chromium OS and Linux and allowing to watch you Android TV as well. Dylan Callahan has made that possible by fusing all these three independent features into one computer called Fancy Computer.
Google and Qualcomm have announced a partnership to enhance Android Auto, including the long-demanded wireless mode.
Android Auto is an infotainment feature that Google announced during the 2014 Google I/O. The company also released an Android Auto app in March 2015. About 100 car models across 40 brands use Android Auto but the company plans to extend its reach to more cars in the near term.
Lots of nice feedback from my last post, so here’s some new stuff. Up now is downloading new metadata and updates in plugins.
The plugin loader supports a gs_plugin_refresh() vfunc that is called in various situations. To ensure plugins have the minimum required metadata on disk it is called at startup, but with a cache age of infinite. This basically means the plugin must just ensure that any data exists no matter what the age.
This weekend we had the GStreamer Spring Hackfest 2016 in Thessaloniki, my new home town. As usual it was great meeting everybody in person again, having many useful and interesting discussions and seeing what everybody was working on. It seems like everybody was quite productive during these days!
Linux 4.6 was released on 15th May by Linus Torvalds and the wait to enjoy the update is over. Few distros has adopted the change. According to Arch Linux developer Tobias Powalowski, Linux kernel 4.6 has entered the testing repository in Arch Linux which is on 9th position on popularity whereas Debian-based SparkyLinux has also landed in the operating system’s ‘unstable’ repository. The developers have also provided installation instruction for SparkyLinux which is ready to use, out of the box operating system.
Arch Linux is a lightweight, flexible and independently developed general purpose GNU/Linux distribution. And if there is a unique and special distribution of Linux, then it has got to be Arch Linux. Experienced users can build their very own Arch Linux system from the ground up.
This week we finally could add the long awaited Qt 5.6 to Tumbleweed. It was blocked for a long time as it exposed a bug in, what showed, icewm (the window manager used during installation). This bug though is so deeply nested in the architecture of icewm, that in the end, it was decided to workaround the bug with a ‘fix’ in YaST directly.
I’ve been considering moving this blog from Digital Ocean to Amazon Web Services for a while now but finally bit the bullet after a recent DDOS attack on my backend database. This was caused by a misconfiguration on my part, I remembered wrong and thought that I had disabled all remote connections during the mysql_secure_installation process but it actually only restricts remote access to the root account: (Setting local-only access is done with a ‘bind-address=127.0.0.1’ in the my.cnf file by the way). So is that Digital Ocean’s fault? No, absolutely not but it made me paranoid enough to want a firewall on top of my MySQL restrictions to make sure that no other service was allowing outside connections. This could easily be done on the server side but then I’d have to manage firewalls on every instance I stand up and I have plans to.. well I should keep my world domination plans to myself but suffice it to say I wanted a higher level firewall. Digital Ocean offers nothing of the sort, every droplet is wide open unless you change it on the server side. Amazon on the other hand offers security groups, allowing you to create multiple firewall schemes at the network level for different types of servers and manage them with a nice interface.
Those old Fedoras were so nice, BTW. Funnily enough, that VM with 1 CPU and 1.5 GB starts quicker than the host laptop with the benefit of SystemD and its ability to run tasks in parallel. Of course, the handing of WiFi in Fedora 20+ is light years ahead of nm-applet in Fedora 10. There was some less noticeable progress elsewhere as well. But in the same time, the bloat was phenomenal.
One of the most intuitive ways to interact with an application is reproducing what we do in real life. Applications try to shorten the learning curve by using metaphores of real world objects.
We all know what GNOME Calendar is: a virtual calendar application. As such, using real-life calendars as a reference for it’s UI is mostly a good thing, except that we’d probably have an annoying time moving events around. In this regard, technology can improve what we do.
I'm using ARCH Linux on PS4 running 1.76 fw.
After the success of the first version, FireRays is moving to another major milestone. We are open sourcing the entire library which allows complete integration and contribution from the entire developer community to bring improvements in the rendering world. In fact FireRays 2.0 brings support for Windows, OSX, Linux, AMD, NV, Intel GPUs and CPUs with many back-ends.
This is a recap of weird things that could happen with the newer Linux Filesystems. Ubuntu 16.04 and Debian Linux ship both ZFS (OpenZFS) and BTRFS so it's normal to think about it, but like many "new" Linux technologies (e.g Wayland), none agree when it's the right moment to jump on them.
As we approach the PulseAudio 9.0 release, I thought it would be a good time to talk about one of the things I had a chance to work on, that landed in this cycle.
Macbooks may be sleek and sexy, but they’re not moving as fast as the competition any more. They’ve been surpassed by Chromebooks for the first time ever.
Two Soylentils wrote with a caution about a new strategy in Microsoft's playbook to get people to upgrade to Windows 10.
A team of developers made good on their threats to fork Debian Linux late last year, after the community’s leadership voted to replace sysvinit with systemd, making systemd the default init boot process.
Using Ubuntu 16.04 and want to install the official Telegram Linux app?
Don’t run off to the official website to get the official binary: there’s now a Telegram app snap package available on Ubuntu 16.04.
At first, the Aquaris M10 Ubuntu Edition — often called the Ubuntu tablet — resembles most modern tablets, with a hard plastic case that folds into a stand, limited multi-tasking from an overview screen, and some ability to act like a workstation or laptop. However, even a tentative exploration reveals that the Ubuntu Edition is much more, due mostly to its operating system and the Unity interface, which comes of age at last on this tablet.
If you are trying to focus on your work and don't want to disable notifications completely then here is a tool called "NoNotifications" for you, which works in Ubuntu Unity. It is just a simple panel indicator which allows you to disable notification temporarily. This tool should be enhanced to offer more features like mobile OS's already have, to completely disable everything Like: tones, alerts, notifications, and so, and schedule a time to activate/deactivate could be a plus for this small application.
NoNotifications is a simple indicator for Ubuntu (Unity 7) that allows you to temporarily suppress NotifyOSD notifications. The tool is useful for presentations, when working, and so on, to prevent unwanted notifications from getting in your way or distracting you.
Back in the hippie days there was a lot of talk about plastic people, which would be fake people. Back in those days, plastic people were to be avoided, as was plastic anything.
How times have changed. These days we embrace a plastic world. As example, we replace carefully hand crafted wristwatches made to last a lifetime with electronic rhinestone wearables that will be obsolete in a year or two because they tell us how fast and how seldom we walk.
You see, by the ’60s definition, plastic didn’t need to be made of plastic to be plastic. You dig?
Swapnil Bhartiya at CIO found BQ’s hardware to be more than up to the task and also thought that nearly all aspects of the Ubuntu Touch with convergence to be beyond super fantastic. Gesture swiping is amazing, Scopes are the best thing since sliced bread, and using convergence to run in full blown desktop mode is “one of it’s greatest features.” The App Store, which he calls the “most exciting part of this Ubuntu tablet,” disappoints him because despite having tons of cool apps he’s never seen offered for phones before, it doesn’t have a few things he likes.
“After using the tablet for a while,” he opines, “I had to face the harsh reality that as much as wanted to like the tablet, the lack of what I consider essential native apps will prevent me from using it as my primary, or even as a secondary, device.”
The only apps he mentions that he would like but which are MIA? “[N]one of the streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime are available on the device.”
Maybe he should just buy himself a TV.
In case you missed it, the conference live streamed Corey Doctorow’s Thursday morning keynote address, called “Open, Closed, and Demon Haunted: An Internet of Things That Act Like Inkjet Printers,” along with all other keynotes throughout the event. Included below is a short snippet of the talk that’s available on YouTube. Doctorow’s complete talk is available online, but requires the opening of an account with O’Reilly in order to view it.
Cinnamon 3.0 is the latest release of Cinnamon Desktop Environment and it will become as default desktop for upcoming Linux Mint 18 codenamed "sarah".
An extremely simple new way to setup Raspberry Pi Zero as a USB virtual network gadget, allowing SSH, SFTP, VNC etc over a single USB cable. All without need of a keyboard, mouse, screen etc to setup!
We are pleased to announce that Mycroft Core 0.6 Alpha is available for download today. Mycroft Core is a lightweight, portable piece of software written in Python. You can run it on anything from a Raspberry Pi to a gaming rig. Mycroft Core includes Adapt, Mimic, OpenSTT, and multiple open APIs to create an experience that allows users to interact with their technology using the most natural form of human communication – speech.
This software is the core from which our community will soon develop a host of new skills. We’ve released it because we want you to build on top of it. It contains an awesome skills framework that allows you to do things like control your Phillips Hue lights or add new voice commands to your Team Fortress avatar (both of these are real examples).
Arduino Srl and ST unveiled a graphically-rich Arduino STAR Otto SBC based on the 32-bit STM32F469 MCU, and featuring WiFi, MIPI-DSI, audio, and cam links.
At the Bay Area Maker Faire this week, Arduino Srl and STMicroelectronics (ST) announced a jointly developed, high-end Arduino board. Only a few months ago we would be raving about the Arduino STAR Otto’s WiFi connection, enabled here via an ESP8266 WiFi Module, but this has recently become almost a given on the latest Arduino boards. The STAR Otto does break new ground, however, in Arduino graphics and multimedia capability.
Apple came in third with shipments of 1.5 million Watches and Garmin took fourth place with shipments of 900,000 sports wearables. Samsung and BBK, another Chinese maker of watches for children with tracking capabilities, tied for fifth place after each shipped an estimated 700,000 units.
It's really happening. Android apps are coming to Chrome OS. And it's not just a small subset of apps; the entire Google Play Store is coming to Chrome OS. More than 1.5 million apps will come to a platform that before today was "just a browser," and Android and Chrome OS take yet another step closer together.
Between 11-13 May 2016, Zacharias Mitzelos and I had been to Zagreb, Croatia for the 23rd DORS/CLUC. We were joined by Elio Qoshi, Jona Azizaj from Albania and Gergely Rakosi from Hungary.
The Free Software Legal & Licensing Workshop (LLW) is a three-day event held every year for legal professionals (and aficionados) who work in the realm of free and open-source software (FOSS). It is organized by the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) and, this year, the event was held in Barcelona (Spain), April 13-15. The topics covered during the event ranged from determining what constitutes authorship, how to attribute it, and what is copyrightable, to the complexity of licenses and how to make them more accessible for potential licensees lacking in legal background. In addition, license enforcement and compliance were discussed, with a particular focus on how the GPL and related licenses have done in court.
According to the organizers, there were approximately 90 attendees, 70% of whom were legal professionals and 30% technical professionals linked in some way to legal matters in their communities or companies. Attendees came from legal firms, traditionally open-source companies and communities, such as the Linux Foundation, Red Hat, and Debian, tech companies with some open-source products (Intel and others), and companies that are using open-source software embedded in their products. Discussions were held under the Chatham House Rule, which means that names and affiliations of participants are only available for those who have explicitly agreed.
Markup formats can inspire just as much devotion and loathing as programming languages. TeX versus HTML, DocBook versus Mallard—the list is probably endless. But the "lightweight" markup formats (Markdown, reStructuredText, AsciiDoc, and so on) are the subject of particular scrutiny. Users almost always write them by hand, not in a dedicated tool, and the formats are becoming ever more widespread: as input formats in web applications and as the preferred document format on sites like GitHub. But these lightweight formats, Markdown in particular, have developed a reputation for compatibility problems in recent years—see the CommonMark effort for one of several attempts to impose order on the chaos. Thus, when version 6.0 of ReText, a GUI editor for Markdown and reStructuredText documents, was released recently, I was curious enough to take a look.
This is a story of what I have lived or witnessed a few times so far. A story of an organization that used to consume, develop and ship proprietary software for many years. At some point in time, management took the decision of using Open Source. Like in most cases, the decision was forced by its customers, providers, competitors... and by numbers.
This organization gained control over its production and, by consuming Open Source, it could focus many resources in differentiation, without changing the structure, development and delivery processes. At some point, it was shipping products that involved a significant percentage of generic software taken “from internet”.
It became an Open Source producer.
You can recognise such organizations they frequently create a specific group, usually linked to R&D, in change of brining all the innovation that is happening "in the Open Source community" into the organization.
Little by little this organisation realised that giving fast and satisfactory answers, to its customer demands became more and more expensive. They got stuck in what rapidly became an old kernel or tool chain version.... Bringing innovation from “the community” required back-porting, solving complex integration issues, incompatibilities with what your provider brings, what your customer wants.
It’s been almost five years since we heard that “software is eating the world.” The number of SaaS applications has exploded and there is a rising wave of software innovation in the area of APIs that provide critical connective tissue and increasingly important functionality. There has been a proliferation of third-party API companies, which is fundamentally changing the dynamics of how software is created and brought to market.
The application programming interface (API) has been a key part of software development for decades as a way to develop for a specific platform, such as Microsoft Windows. More recently, newer platform providers, from Salesforce to Facebook and Google, have offered APIs that help the developer and have, in effect, created a developer dependency on these platforms.
The year 2016 is quickly shaping up to be one of the hottest years on record for 3D printing innovations. Although there is still a lot of hype surrounding 3D printing and how it may or may not be the next industrial revolution, one thing is for certain: the cost of printing will continue to drop while the quality of 3D prints continues to rise.
This development can be traced to advanced 3D printing technologies becoming accessible due to the expiration of key patents on pre-existing industrial printing processes.
Electrospinning is a fascinating process where a high voltage potential is applied between a conductive emitter nozzle and a collector screen. A polymer solution is then slowly dispensed from the nozzle. The repulsion of negative charges in the solution forces fine fibers emanate from the liquid. Those fibers are then rapidly accelerated towards the collector screen by the electric field while being stretched and thinned down to a few hundred nanometers in diameter. The large surface area of the fine fibers lets them dry during their flight towards the collector screen, where they build up to a fine, fabric-like material. We’ve noticed that electrospinning is hoped to enable fully automated manufacturing of wearable textiles in the future.
Below are the key changes that will be introduced (or removed) in PHP 7.1. For a full list, and to see which changes are being discussed, check out the official PHP RFC.
PHP 7.1 is coming later this year as the first significant update to last year's PHP 7 release that delivered huge speed improvements.
We've already been looking forward to new features with PHP 7.1 and in not looking at the 7.1 work in a few months, more improvements have materialized.
The following projects have been selected to participate to SOCIS 2016.
Instruction for students: you can apply now, but you must first contact the mentor of the project of your choice and discuss the contents.
A new version 1.7.1 “Spring 2016” of G’MIC (GREYC’s Magic for Image Computing), the open-source framework for image processing, has been released recently (26 April 2016). This is a great opportunity to summarize some of the latest advances and features over the last 5 months.
Filesystem/Volume encryption has become paramount to the masses in the IT industry due to the varying advantages it presents including protection of sensitive data, military-grade encryption standards, password keys to prevent unwanted access, and an encrypted file/drive only the encryption software can access among others.
A few days back, we briefly reviewed Truecrypt as a secure software encryption tool.
Geary Email client is my by same developers who created Shotwell application, it is lightweight and open source email reader alternative to Thunderbird and others. Geary works with most popular webmail services, including Gmail, Yahoo and Outlook, as well as providing IMAP and SMTP support which means you can setup manual IMAP mail service for other providers. Basically it is inspired from webmail client like Gmail, it organizes mails into 'conversations' rather than threads. Conversation styles threading keeps things tidy and neat - quite useful on mailing lists.
Mattermost 3.0 offers a long awaited features: multi-team accounts, Japanese language translation, and full width display, plus upgrades to apps for iOS, Android, Windows, Linux and Mac, emojis, and we have new integrations for Outlook, Ruby & Rust.
Skype is a very well known voice over IP service that is as well cross-platform, the client on Linux however, it is rather unpleasant to use and mostly buggy with way fewer features than its counterparts on other platforms.
Previously I covered Ring which is a secure cross-platform alternative to Skype, but then there are even more functional optional softwares to Skype that are rather uncommon and I ‘ll be featuring just three of them (which i term as the best) on this list.
The internet is by far a well-rounded source to get information on just about anything you might be needing info on. The internet is, however, extremely broad and doesn’t in fact, give you specifics on some info you might be searching for.
This is where Wikipedia comes in. Wikipedia is a free encyclopedia that is ultimately a part of the internet but it narrows down your search to exactly what it is that you may be searching for and this is why it’s used by millions around the world.
The Inverse team is pleased to announce the immediate availability of SOGo v3.1.0. This is a major release of SOGo which focuses on important new features and improved stability over previous versions.
Alternative Toobar is a plugin that enhances the Rhythmbox play controls and interface, including optional headerbars for GNOME-based desktops.
Screenkey itself can't be used to create screencasts, its use is to display your keystrokes on the screen. To record your Linux desktop, I recommend SimpleScreenRecorder.
File compression is a routine task for most of the Administrators and normal users, to save disk space and to move data from one location to another safer location, this compression utility is used. from historical point of view tar utility was developed to get sequential data backup and it was stored in magnetic tape drives. To send data via internet the compression utility play an important role, it can hold multiple files together and will reduce the overall file size, this can save both the time and internet bandwidth, Linux comes with very quick and effective tools which can reduce file sizes from 40 to 80 percent. In this article we will discuss top 15 utilities in Linux available for users.
Three years ago, when a user would attempt to download the Google Drive client from their Linux computer, Google would bring them to the appropriate download page, which of course landed them on a page with a message read: “Not (yet) supported for Linux.” What’s the deal with Google not developing a sync client for Linux users, seeing as to how they build a lot of their things using Linux? There’s one simple answer to that, unfortunately. Windows is mainstream, so a lot of their focus is put towards what a majority of people use. The bigger the market, the more money in their pockets. But don’t fear, change is near!