On the Desktop
Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Development page.
News and Editorials
Red Hat's Embedded Linux Developer Suite. Following a relatively quiet week at LinuxWorld, Red Hat announced a new offering this week: the Red Hat Embedded Linux Developer Suite. The suite includes an embedded version of Red Hat Linux, the gcc cross-development tool suite, an embedded boot loader, and the usual set of associated services. Support is provided for several processors.
Red Hat recently announced a number of other initiatives including an e-commerce offering and a PostgreSQL based database package. But their foray into the embedded Linux marketplace, ignoring their eCOS alternative, has been rather minimal up to this point. Red Hat has supported the tools essential to embedded work (i.e. gcc, binutils, and glibc), but as avoided the creation of its own embedded distribution.
One of the few bright spots of late for computing has been the embedded space, which Linux vendors have nearly saturated. Vendors such as MontaVista, Lineo, LynuxWorks and RidgeRun already market Linux based distributions for embedded systems. The question is whether Red Hat can use it's relatively well known name to power its way into a growing but well seeded arena.
Red Hat's advantages, of course, are its long experience (by way of Cygnus) and its high-profile name. Given those, the company may just be able to muscle its way into the embedded distribution market, despite a late start.
Research Triangle Park, N.C. based Red Hat is expected to ship the new embedded product sometime in October.
Mozilla leader laid off from Netscape. Mitchell Baker, lead wrangler of Mozilla.org, was laid off last Thursday from Netscape (or rather AOL's Netscape Division). Her personal notice to the Mozilla project members states that while she is no longer with Netscape, she intends to remain active with the Mozilla project.
There have been unconfirmed reports that this may be have been part of a larger layoff, which spawned rumors that it was all part of Netscape's earlier announcements stating that company's intent to exit the browser market. However, as of press time, LWN.net has been unable to confirm the larger layoff reports.
A brief notice was posted to Bugzilla noting Baker's departure, but there has been little added discussion there. Users of Bugzilla have requested that visitors not burden the server looking for what isn't there.
The story didn't escape Slashdot's faithful. One feedback post says Baker was fired from Netscape, though Mitchell's own account says her position was eliminated. Requests for comments on this situation from various Netscape and Mozilla members has produced no additional information as yet, though we're still looking into the matter.
It should be pointed out - though it shouldn't need to be - that even if AOL/Netscape were to completely eliminate all staff actively working on Mozilla, the project wouldn't die. Therein lies the beauty of open source. The company need not continue the financial burden of such a project, but the project need not be held hostage to corporate whims or economic downturns.
Well wishes go out to Baker and any other ex-Netscape Mozilla contributors with hopes that they'll land on their feet in short order.
LSB Filesystem Hierarchy Standard 2.2 test suite. The LSB Filesystem Hierarchy Standard 2.2 test suite is now available. The FHS, of course, specifies where files should be located in a Linux distribution as part of the Linux Standard Base. This test suite may be used to verify a distribution's compliance with version 2.2 of the FHS.
A walk on the embedded side . . . of LinuxWorld SF 2001 (LinuxDevices.com). Rick Lehrbaum of LinuxDevices.com says embedded Linux is on the rise as he takes a walk on the embedded side of LinuxWorld. "In the past, Embedded Linux products and technologies accounted for roughly 10 percent of what was showcased at LinuxWorld. At this show, the Embedded Linux fraction seems to have increased to around 15-20 percent. Not surprising, given the strong growth in developer interest in Embedded Linux reported in recent months by market analysts VDC (story), Evans Data Corp (story), and others (story)."
NuSphere MySQL (Unix Review). Unix Review reviews NuSphere MySQL. "All in all, I'm disappointed that NuSphere did not do a better job of documenting their product. Remember, most of the software included in NuSphere MySQL is freely available. What a user is really paying for is convenience, information and support."
MiniSQL updates. MiniSQL, known more commonly as mSQL, has had a couple of new releases this past week. The first is the last stable release of the 2.0 series, version 2.0.12. This release fixes a security problem with the w3-auth access control. Also this week, the third beta release for the new 3.0 version was announced.
Database Gorilla Hunter (TechWeb). TechWeb reviews PostgreSQL 7.1 from GreatBridge. "If your business has hefty database requirements, it's hard to imagine an open-source option that's a true alternative to the established commercial database engines. Great Bridge, however, brings software, service and support together in a product that can be safely considered for many smaller organizations or apps."
phpMyAdmin 2.2.0 released. phpMyAdmin 2.2.0, a web administration tool for MySQL, has been released. There are security fixes in this release, so an upgrade is recommended; there's also a long list of new features.
Seul/EDU Linux in Education Report. The Seul/EDU Linux in Education Report for September 3 is out; this issue has a strong emphasis on putting Linux systems in schools, and delves into the question of whether an education-specific distribution is called for.
Why should open source software be used in schools?. LinuxMedNews pointed us to an article on why open source software should be used for general education. "Students should, at least, be given the opportunity to see how their new tools work. They should be given the opportunity to examine the inner workings of software. They should be given the opportunity to extend the functions of their tools, where they see or imagine possibilities. They should not be held back by locking the toolbox of the Information Age and told they must not peer inside, must not try to discover how it works, must not share their tools with others, must not use their tools without paying proper tribute to the software overlords, under penalty and punishment of law." Plenty of links are used to back up the arguments here, making this is a useful reference for educators working on Linux in the classroom projects.
CUPS Book. A book on CUPS, published by SAMS and written by Easy Software Products founder Michael R. Sweet, is now available from the Easy Software website.
Omni printer driver 0.4.2. Another release of the Omni printer driver has been made available from IBM's Linux Technology Center. This release was created to allow Omni to be used with the latest levels of Foomatic and printconf.
World Wide Web Consortium Issues SVG 1.0. W3 has issued the SVG 1.0 specification as a recommendation, meaning that the specification is stable, contributes to Web interoperability, and has been reviewed by the W3C Membership, who favor its widespread adoption.
Zope News for August 31. The Zope News for August 31, 2001 is out. It covers the Zope 2.4 beta release, a new ZEO beta release, the SecurityJihad project, Paul Everitt's new son, and more.
Zope 2.4.1 released. Zope 2.4.1 has been released; it is primarily a bugfix release, which includes the recent security updates.
Section Editor: Michael Hammel
September 6, 2001
LISA 1.0 released. The official release of LISA 1.0 was announced this past week. LISA is
a platform for the development of Rete-based intelligent systems in Common Lisp. The most significant new feature in Version 1.0 is full support for rule redefinition within a running inference engine.
The full announcement can be found online.
CMU CL CVS server move causes temporary service disruption. The CVS repository for CMU CL is being moved to a new server, which will keep the sources and binary distributions unavailable from their normal locations for a few weeks. Until then, backup repositories have been made available.
PHP Weekly Summary #52. This week's summary for PHP development includes talk of some new gettext additions, a fix for broken output buffering, and word of tighter Apache integration in future versions.
Improving the social infrastructure of Python (developerWorks). Here's an article on Python documentation and distribution utilities on IBM's developerWorks site. "By way of background for any Python beginners reading this, Python has long had some semi-formal documentation standards. These standards have not attempted to constrain developers unduly, but rather to offer the 'one obvious way to do it.' Fortunately, Python developers, as a rule, have always been far better documenters than typical developers in other languages."
This week's Python-URL. Here is a relatively thin Dr. Dobb's Python-URL for August 30, 2001. Topics include a look at WebWare, WebDAV module progress, a look at Tinter, and file locking issues.
This week's Tcl-URL. Here is Dr. Dobb's Tcl-URL for August 31, with the latest from the Tcl/Tk development community. This issue looks at XML and XSL, tcl plugins, and new versions of e4graph, sgxTools, ActiveTcl, and moodss.
Section Editor: Forrest Cook
Gnu Compiler Collection (GCC)
Gnu Compiler for the Java Language (GCJ)
IBM Java Zone
Free the X3J Thirteen (Lisp)
Dr. Dobbs' Perl
PHP Weekly Summary
Tcl Developer Xchange