Recommended Readingdiscusses the Tivoization of health care data in a Free Software Magazine article. "Well, consider what would happen if my software and the operating system underneath it were Tivoized. I help write an GPL Electronic Health Record (EHR). Under the current version of the GPL, someone could make an appliance from my software and GNU/Linux and prevent people from modifying and controlling healthcare data stored in the Electronic Health Record that ran on this device. What the Tivoization traps is the data, which for Tivo means movies and television shows recorded digitally. But what happens when the data that is trapped is infinitely more valuable? When we discuss DRM, we should be thinking of an EHR that has been Tivoized, (perhaps a health-Tivo) rather than a television recording device." suggests that Microsoft's launch of Windows Vista will give companies a new reason to switch to Linux. "The launch of Windows Vista has created a huge opportunity for Linux vendors to take a larger share of the corporate desktop market, according to the president of Linux Australia. New features combined with a slightly different look and feel mean that migrating to Vista from an older version of Windows will cause disruption in the workplace. On the first day of Linux.conf.au, the president of Linux Australia, Jonathon Oxer, told ZDNet Australia that instead of retraining staff on the new version of Windows, administrators could make the switch to Linux."
Trade Shows and Conferencesday 1 and day 2 of the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). "On Day Two of CES 2007, the news, announcements, and analysis kept rolling in, and our editors and analysts were on top of it all. Find out about the Blu-ray Consortium's plans for world domination, how you'll be getting TV on your PC and vice versa, a camera sensor that sees in the dark, and lots more, in this selective sample of today's stories." covers the Linux side of the 2007 Consumer Electronics Show. "Three years ago, out of more than 2300 CES exhibitors, the word "Linux" appeared in text associated with just 11 of them, in the show's online guide. This year at CES 2007 has more than 2700 exhibitors; yet "Linux" appears in text associated with just 3 companies: Interact-TV, Neuros Technology and Pixel Magic Systems. Yet it is clearer than ever that Linux has become the bedrock on which more and more companies build their solutions." fun and sun down under. "It took more than 17 hours in planes and a trip through customs, but I've made the trek from Denver, Colorado, to Sydney, Australia, for Linux.conf.au (LCA) 2007. Already it looks like the trip was worthwhile. Linux.conf.au (or "Linux.con f.au," as it says on our misprinted hats) is a roving conference held annually in different locations around Australia. This year, the conference returned to Sydney at the Kensington campus of the University of New South Wales, where the first Linux.conf.au was held." The LWN weekly edition for January 18th will feature more articles fresh from linux.conf.au.
Companiesreports that Sun Microsystems is releasing Fortress, a replacement for the FORTRAN language with parallel programming capabilities, under the BSD license. "Sun Microsystems took a new open-source step this week, enlisting the outside world's help in an attempt to create a brand-new programming language called Fortress. On Tuesday, the company quietly released as open-source software a prototype Fortress "interpreter," a programming tool to execute Fortress programs line by line. "We're trying to engage academics and other third parties," said Eric Allen, a Sun Labs computer scientist and Fortress project leader, about the open-source move." reports that Sun is going to add the GNU General Public License version 3 to OpenSolaris in addition to its current CDDL. "This will enable programmers to share code among OpenSolaris and other GPLv3 open-source software projects. While it still looks very doubtful that Linux will go GPLv3, we can be certain that the Free Software Foundation Gnu Project's 5,000 plus programs will be available under the GPLv3. In addition, the Samba Team has announced that it will be making its popular Samba CIFS (Common Internet File System) software GPLv3."
Linux Adoptionlooks into a recent study [PDF] by the European Union entitled "Study on the Economic impact of open source software on innovation and the competitiveness of the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sector in the EU". "I thought you'd be interested in the conclusion regarding total cost of ownership. Is it true that switching to Open Source will cost you more than staying with Windows, as Microsoft's "Get the Facts" page claims? No. The study found: "Our findings show that, in almost all the cases, a transition toward open source reports of savings on the long term costs of ownership of the software products." But what about training costs? Doesn't that remove the benefits? No, the report found: "Costs to migrate to an open solution are relevant and an organization needs to consider an extra effort for this. However these costs are temporary and mainly are budgeted in less than one year." So there you are." looks at a final draft of a study on the economic / innovative impacts of Free and Open Source Software. "The European Commission's enterprise and industry department just released the final draft of what could be the biggest academic interdisciplinary study on the economic / innovative impacts of FLOSS*. The study was done by an international consortium, led by the United Nations University / University of Maastricht's (NL,EU) department of innovation; UNU-MERIT for short. The study was prepared by senior researcher Rishab Aiyer Ghosh, who did a tremendous amount of FLOSS studies the last few years, amongst them on FLOSSpols and FLOSSWorld."
Legalpresents a paper by Brendan Scott on the BSD license. "Brendan Scott has been studying the BSD license, particularly in the context of Australian law, and he has come up with some startling questions. Is the BSD license as permissive as we've thought? The paper is principally for lawyers to consider, but it's certainly of interest to everyone, and note his disclaimer: Nothing in this paper is legal advice or a statement of the law. This paper is an exposition of an (untested) argument as to the effect of the BSD license."
Interviewstalks with Brett Adams, vice president of development at rPath. "Brett Adams, vice president of development at rPath, sees 2007 as a pivotal year for virtualization. When you are looking at the future of virtualization, few companies are as well positioned to make observations as rPath. Billing itself as the "software appliance company," rPath was one of the first companies to focus on virtual appliances and simplifying their production." talks with User Mode Linux maintainer Jeff Dike. "One of the great things about Linux.conf.au is the chance to mingle with some of the brightest lights in the open source community. For example, Jeff Dike, author and maintainer of User-Mode Linux is here this week to talk about UML and the Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM). During one of the breaks on Monday, I sat down with Dike to talk about UML's immediate future, and picked his brain about other virtualization technologies."
Resourcesa tutorial on monitoring CPU utilization under Linux. "Whenever a Linux system CPU is occupied by a process, it is unavailable for processing other requests. Rest of pending requests must wait till CPU is free. This becomes a bottleneck in the system. Following command will help you to identify CPU utilization, so that you can troubleshoot CPU related performance problems. Finding CPU utilization is one of the important tasks. Linux comes with various utilities to report CPU utilization." discusses DNS extensions on O'Reilly. "The DNS system is not static; there are several proposed new extensions and applications under development and adoption. DNS expert Cricket Liu explores five for updates and their future: the Sender Policy Framework, IPv6 support, Internationalized Domain Names, ENUM, and the DNS Security Extensions." Adobe blog post: "This is it. This is the officially blessed version of the Adobe Flash Player 9 for Linux (x86). Not a beta version; the final version. It's released. Today." You can download a tar.gz or .rpm from here.
HowtoForge has an article on installing the new native Linux Flash Player 9 from Adobe on an Ubuntu Edgy Eft desktop.a tutorial on Ghost4Linux. "This tutorial shows how you can back up and restore hard drives and partitions with Ghost4Linux. Ghost4Linux is a Linux Live-CD that you insert into your computer; it contains hard disk and partition imaging and cloning tools similar to Norton Ghost. The created images are compressed and transferred to an FTP server instead of cloning locally." shows how to control a computer with whistling in an IBM developerWorks article. "Use Linux® or Microsoft® Windows®, the open source sndpeek program, and a simple Perl script to read specific sequences of tonal events -- literally whistling, humming, or singing at your computer -- and run commands based on those tones. Give your computer a short low whistle to check your e-mail or unlock your your screensaver with the opening bars of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. Whistle while you work for higher efficiency." a tutorial on managing the Qmail MTA message queue. "Occasionally, viruses will get past scanners before the signatures get updated; if they exist in large numbers, it is often practical to stop the Qmail install briefly in order to clean out all messages containing a signature related to the virus. Whatever the reason to pull items from your mail queue, this program will delete them in such a manner that will let you restore them easily." a tutorial on scanning uploaded files for viruses with php-clamavlib. "This guide describes how you can automatically scan files uploaded by users through a web form on your server using PHP and ClamAV. That way you can make sure that your upload form will not be abused to distribute malware. To glue PHP and ClamAV, we install the package php5-clamavlib/php4-clamavlib which is rather undocumented at this time. That package is available for Debian Etch and Sid and also for Ubuntu Dapper Drake and Edgy Eft, so make sure you use one of these platforms."
Reviewsreviews VMware Player and Workstation. "More and more organizations are consolidating physical hardware using virtualization. But virtualization technology and tools aren't limited to big-dollar corporations. With the free-as-in-beer VMware Player, and the very cheap VMware Workstation, you too can use this fancy technology to utilize the processing horsepower of cheap multi-core hardware available off-the-shelf." takes a look at the tiny Linutop computer. "The gadget, about the size of a portable CD player, is an embedded Linux PC without a hard disk. It has four USB2 ports, for connecting a mouse, PC, keyboard and other devices (such as a USB Wi-Fi adapter, storage stick, etc.), and an integrated 100Mbps Ethernet port and VGA video output. Microphone and headphone jacks are also built in. The box itself runs AMDs embedded Geode processor, with 256MB of memory, and 512MB of ROM, for storing the operating system image and applications." covers the PS3 RapidMind Development Platform. "It has been announced that RapidMind and Terra Soft have teamed up to make application development for the PlayStation 3 easier than ever before. Last month Terra Soft announced the release of Yellow Dog Linux of the PlayStation 3, and now with the RapidMind Development Platform, developers can more easily create applications that run on PS3 and other hardware which utilizes the Cell Broadband Engine." looks at Innotek's VirtualBox Open Source Edition. "Germany's InnoTek Systemberatung GmbH started out by supporting enterprises and financial institutions that were running IBM infrastructure. "As many of these enterprises were running outdated solutions such as OS/2, but cannot simply replace such huge infrastructures with the snap of a finger, virtualization was a natural solution to them," says Achim Hasenmueller, general manager of InnoTek. Hasenmueller adds that his company has been in the virtualization business for a long time and has also contributed substantial parts to what is now Microsoft Virtual PC. "Today we staff the largest group of virtualization experts in Europe," he says."
Miscellaneousreports on the loss of customer control over browser-based Electronic Medical Record systems. "The age of the all-browser based Electronic Medical Record/Electronic Health Record (EMR/EHR) is upon us. Local area network (LAN) based EMR's upon which older generation EMR's companies have built their products is dead. This paradigm shift is occurring now. This development threatens Free and Open Source medical software, practitioners and patients as they have never been threatened before." covers the joining of the Java Community Process by the Eclipse Foundation. "Maybe cats and dogs can live together, after all. Sources close to the matter revealed today that the Eclipse Foundation has joined the Java Community Process (JCP). A quick check of the JCP membership list reveals that the Foundation is listed as a member. The sources also said that Eclipse joined the JCP this week, and that the formal announcement is scheduled for next week. Historically, the two development groups have not worked or played well with each other. Both, however, have had a common goal: an open-source, inexpensive Java IDE (integrated development environment) that can be used on multiple platforms to produce programs for various computer architectures." reports on a new funding scheme for the OLPC project. "The nonprofit group that hopes to bring inexpensive laptops to poor kids around the world is now considering the possibility of allowing the $100 machines to be purchased by the general public. The backers of the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project haven't suddenly been bitten by the capitalist bug, but rather have come up with a way to offer the computers to the general public while increasing their availability to school children in developing nations. According to one plan being considered, the computers would be offered to customers who would have to purchase a minimum of two laptops at a time -- with the second going to the developing world." reports that the UK Free Software Network (UKFSN) is offering to pay students for open source code. "As an incentive to get students to push the code boundaries of open source software, a British software network is offering cash for fresh code, reports Welsh IT News Online. The UK Free Software Network (UKFSN), a small Hertfordshire-based Internet service provider, conceived the idea to encourage students to develop software that can be modified by its end users."
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