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Recommended Reading

Getting Flat, Part 1 (Linux Journal)

Doc Searls digs into It's a Flat World, After All, by Tom Friedman. "The two-part format also works thematically. The first part deals with Tom Friedman's treatment of Linux and open source. The second will deal with the solutions to flat-world challenges he hopes will come from both large companies and our educational system."

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Fighting anti-Linux FUD, part 263 (NewsForge)

Joe Barr isolates the FUD from a recent Info-Tech Poll on IT Priorities. "But Koelsch contradicted himself. Earlier in the conversation, when he was justifying the use of "most," he said "there's another large portion, another 15 percent, that aren't sure." Never mind that he changed that portion size from 14 to 15 percent. Look at the way he describes it. In Koelsch's world, 10 percent deciding to implement Linux is tiny, while 14 percent uncertain is large. The size seems to depend not on the actual percentage, but on what's being sold."

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Lack of developers delays OpenOffice.org (ComputerWorld)

ComputerWorld reports from the linux.conf.au OpenOffice.org miniconf, where some problems were discussed. "Sun Microsystems' chief technology evangelist Simon Phipps acknowledged the challenges OpenOffice.org faces and put it down to its monolithic code base rather than Sun's contribution governance. 'For something that was originally written for Windows 3.1 and OS/2, the fact that it now runs on Linux and Solaris is a significant achievement,' Phipps said.... 'Ask IBM why it uses OpenOffice but doesn't contribute to it,' he said."

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Trade Shows and Conferences

LWCE Toronto: Day 1 (NewsForge)

NewsForge reports from LinuxWorld Conference and Expo in Toronto. "The first day of Toronto's LinuxWorld Conference and Expo was made up of a pair of 3-hour long tutorial sessions on various networking and Linux related topics. I selected from among the list of available sessions System & Network Monitoring with Open Source Tools for the morning and Applying Open Source Software Practices to Government Software for the afternoon. Unfortunately, the latter was cancelled at the last minute and I went to Moving to the Linux Business Desktop instead."

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LWCE Toronto: Day 2 (NewsForge)

NewsForge covers LinuxWorld in Toronto. "LinuxWorld Day 2 started at 08:30 with another round of sessions. The was day broken down into one-hour blocks. I attended several, starting with Dee-Ann LeBlanc's presentation on "Linux for Dummies" and keynotes by HP Canada's Paul Tsaparis and Novell's David Patrick."

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MySQL Users Conference Press Releases

Here are the Monday press releases from the MySQL Users Conference:

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The 12th VistA Community Meeting (LinuxMedNews)

LinuxMedNews covers the 12th Vista Community Meeting, the event was held in Boston on April 7-10, 2005. "There were many, many goings on at the event, including installation workshops, histories of VistA and MUMPS as well as major announcements by the Pacific Telehealth and Technology Hui of the formation of the VistA Institute and Medsphere's enhancements to the VA fileman."

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The SCO Problem

SCO Posts Loss, Revenue Down -- What Else is New? (Groklaw)

Groklaw looks at the latest SCO financial results. "The Lindon, Utah, company posted a net loss of $2.96 million, or 17 cents a share, in the fiscal first quarter ended Jan. 31, compared with a loss of $2.49 million, or 18 cents a share, a year earlier."

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SCO blames Groklaw for IP licensing disappointment (CBR)

According to Computer Business Review, SCO has figured out its problems: it's all Groklaw's fault. "So who is Pamela Jones? [Darl] McBride would not say. 'We're still digging to the bottom of this. I think once we have all of the facts complete we'll be glad to do [share] that,' he said. Perhaps the bigger question might be why SCO, a company McBride claimed is 'steadfastly focused on winning in both the court room and in the market place' is so concerned with what a small community web site thinks about its claims."

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SCO's 1Q 2005 Earnings Conference Call (Groklaw)

Groklaw has assembled a transcript (with accompanying mp3 audio) from the recent SCO 1Q conference call. "My overview impression of the call is that it was an attempt to resurrect SCO's old bullying persona, to go back to the "good old days", when a few companies bought SCOsource licenses and we were all under the impression the litigation was about Linux, and the stock went flying. Is it about Linux? You tell me. If you say it is, kindly also inform me exactly what code is allegedly infringing will you? With specificity? My inquiring mind wants to know. We've been asking that question for two years now. Silence from SCO. Or evidence the judge found not credible."

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The SCO Boomerang and the Strength of Linux (CIO Today)

Groklaw's Pamela Jones has written an article on CIO Today that discusses how the SCO case may have actually helped the growth of Linux. "Linux is growing by leaps and bounds. If Microsoft's anti-Linux campaign got one thing right, it's when it said it was like "a cancer" -- only not the way they meant it. It was trying to say something mean, and inaccurate, about the GPL, the license under which Linux is made available. But in reality, Linux really does seem to be growing at an unstoppable pace. I believe the SCO case, while designed to slow Linux adoption, actually might have encouraged it. I call it the SCO Boomerang."

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Companies

Macromedia, Adobe make peace for bigger fight (News.com)

News.com covers Adobe's acquisition of Macromedia. "Today, analysts expect the upcoming presentation environment in Windows, which includes an XML-based language called XAML (Extensible Application Markup Language), to be able to do many of the things that Macromedia's Flash and Adobe's Acrobat software do. Microsoft's tools are optimized for Windows, while Adobe and Macromedia have been committed to a more diverse desktop environment including the Mac OS and now Linux."

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Business

Big-ticket software gets a haircut (News.com)

News.com reports on a slowdown in sales growth for big-ticket server software, partly as a result of open-source alternatives. "The middleware category that is seeing the most price pressure is application servers, software that runs custom-written programs and handles transactions. On top of JBoss, there are other open-source application servers in the market, including Jonas and Geronimo, which are based on the Java 2 Enterprise Edition, or J2EE, standard. Gartner forecasts that the total revenue from application server license sales will start to decline in 2006."

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Linux Adoption

Brazil is pressing for free software (azcentral)

azcentral looks at Brazil's PC Conectado program. "By the end of April, the government plans to roll out a ballyhooed program called PC Conectado, or Connected PC, aimed at helping millions of low-income Brazilians buy their first computers. If the president's top technology adviser gets his way, the program may offer computers only with free software, including the operating system, instead of giving consumers the option of paying more for, say, a basic edition of Microsoft Windows."

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City of Munich picks its Linux distro (ZDNet UK)

ZDNet UK reports that the City of Munich has chosen to migrate its 14,000 desktops to Debian. "Munich's migration from Microsoft Windows NT to Linux on the desktop was given final approval in June last year, after a year-long pilot project run by SuSE Linux and IBM. The contract for the project was put out to tender in the summer and the City said it considered several alternatives before choosing Debian, which it said offered the best solution in terms of technical competence and price."

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Linux at Work

Key Medical Workstation Client Runs on Linux (LinuxMedNews)

LinuxMedNews looks at the use of Linux by the US Veterans Administration. "As many as 98,000 people die each year as a result of preventable medical errors which Free and Open Source electronic medical records software could reduce. A contender in this area is the Veterans Administration (VA) public domain VistA codebase and large community. In a major advance for FOSS in medicine, Joseph Dal Molin of WorldVistA reports success in getting the VA Computerized Patient Record System (CPRS) VistA client running on Linux."

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Interviews

Project of the Week: Kubuntu (OSDir.com)

OSDir has named Kubuntu Project of the Week and celebrates with an interview with Andreas Müller and Jonathan Riddell. "Andreas Mueller: As foundation-stone for kubuntu's success, it's the success/simplicity of the rock solid base of Ubuntu's Desktop. KDE with it's version 3.4 improved the accessibility on the applications layer. Last not least, is the great community behind Ubuntu/Kubuntu." (Found on KDE.News)

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Project of the Week: Quanta Plus (OSDir.com)

OSDir interviews Eric Laffoon, project leader of Quanta+. "Quanta Plus, or Quanta+, is a web development tool for KDE. Its features include dynamic preview, project management support, templates, multiple toolbars, multiple syntax support, and more. It is modular in design and integrates well with KDE's KIO slaves."

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MySQL Founders: Kill All the Patents (eWeek)

eWeek talks with MySQL founders David Axmark and Michael "Monty" Widenius about MySQL 5.0 and software patents. "The duo sat down with Database Editor Lisa Vaas after their opening keynote at MySQL AB's third user conference Tuesday. They were bullish on the upcoming enterprise-class features of 5.0 and on their beloved community, upon which the company relies for scrupulous bug fixing, but they also had some choice words for what they consider the undemocratic notion of software patents."

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A Chat with PostgreSQL (OSDir)

OSDir talks with PostgreSQL developers. "When most people think of open source database products what comes to mind more often than not is MySQL. But that is changing in the enterprise market, and among demanding developers. The PostgreSQL project has been steadily clawing its way up the ladder in mindwidth since its inception almost ten years ago. Many say they've changed from MySQL to PostgreSQL and never looked back. I recently had a chance to chat with a few of the project's dedicated developers."

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Interview: Fred Trotter on Medical Billing (LinuxMedNews)

LinuxMedNews interviews Fred Trotter of the FreeB medical billing project. "LMN: Why should we care about Free and Open Source medical billing software versus non-free? FT: ...There are two main reasons that people want FOSS. The Free Software people really care about the problem of software licenses being used to control people. The Open Source people are more focused on the benefits of having a more streamlined and efficient development model. Those two reasons apply to medical software in spades. Medical computing is critical to lives of individuals and a society. As such, the licenses that govern medical software should be in the interest of individuals and society, rather than the companies that write the software."

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Resources

The Daemon, the GNU and the Penguin - by Peter H. Salus - Ch. 2 & 3 (Groklaw)

Groklaw presents chapters 2 and 3 of The Daemon, the GNU and the Penguin, a History of Free and Open Source, by Dr. Peter H. Salus. "In spring 1969, AT&T decided to terminate its involvement in a project called Multics -- Multiplexed Information and Computing Service -- which had been started in 1964 by MIT, GE and Bell Labs. This left those at AT&T Bell Labs who had been working on the project -- notably Doug McIlroy, Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson -- at loose ends. Doug immediately got involved with other things in Murray Hill, NJ, but Dennis and Ken had been interested in the project per se and wanted to explore several of its ideas."

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Drag n' Drop CD Ripping in Konqueror (Dave's Desktop)

Dave's Desktop has an article on creating MP3 CDs under KDE. "These days, with the global adoption of the iPod (as well as many other portable players on the market), making MP3s from CD collections is one of the most popular things to do with a home computer. This task use to take a bit of doing and know-how in order to pull off successfully. However, with the advancements in the KDE desktop and the Konqueror file manager, the job of ripping tracks from CD into OGG or MP3 format couldn't be much simpler." KDE.News has additional commentary on the article.

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Securing Linux, Part 3: Hardening the system

developerWorks has an introductory article on hardening a Linux system. "In this series of articles, learn how to plan, design, install, configure, and maintain systems running Linux in a secure way. In addition to a theoretical overview of security concepts, installation issues, and potential threats and their exploits, you'll also get practical advice on how to secure and harden a Linux-based system. We will discuss minimal installation, hardening a Linux installation, authorization/authentication, local and network security, attacks and how to protect against them, as well as data security, virus, and malware programs."

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Userspace Filesystem Encryption with EncFS (O'ReillyNet)

O'ReillyNet has this article on protecting data with an encrypted file system. "For a long time now, computer-related theft has been a real problem. The most likely victims of these thefts are laptops and USB sticks, which are obviously very easy to lift (and leave with). Desktop computers and backup media are stolen less frequently. In all of these cases, much of the time, the data stored in the media is more valuable than both the computer and the media. An important question is how to protect valuable data in our computer's storage areas."

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Reviews

Professional Sound Editing with Audacity (O'ReillyNet)

Here's a look at the Audacity sound editor (with screenshots) on O'ReillyNet. "In the Linux world, Audacity may not be as advanced or powerful as other audio editors (which also function as music composers), but it does stand out as one of the easiest to use. Mazzoni and other developers on the Audacity team borrow the best ideas and features from several audio editors and digital audio workstations, but with the goal of presenting everything under an interface accessible even to inexperienced users."

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At the Sounding Edge: What's Going On with Csound? (Linux Journal)

Dave Phillips reviews the Csound5 software sound synthesis language, in a Linux Journal article. "Csound has been in development since the 1970s, predating personal computers. As might be expected, its codebase has become a bit dusty, particularly regarding modern programming techniques. Csound's ease of extensibility has promoted a great broadening of its processing powers, but at the lower levels, the code currently is undergoing a complete revision. Almost every aspect of the original source tree has come under new scrutiny that should result in a faster, more efficient Csound."

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