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Thinking Past Platforms: the Next Challenge for Linux (Linux Journal)

Doc Searls urges hardware OEMs to make something different with Linux. "I want to challenge the big hardware OEMs -- Dell, HP, Lenovo, Sony and the rest of them -- to break free of the only form factors Microsoft will let them make, and start leading the marketplace by making make cool, interesting, fun and useful stuff that isn't limited by any one company's catalog of possibilities. Stop making generic stuff. Grow greener grass beyond the Windows fences. Stop thinking of Linux as "generic" and "a commodity". Start looking at how building only Windows PCs forces you to make generic, commodity products."

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Windows vs. Linux: The Patent Tax (Software Freedom Law Center)

The Software Freedom Law Center takes a look at the hidden taxes added to MS Windows. "With tax day approaching in America, we at the Software Freedom Law Center wanted to share some important information about the hidden taxes added to every copy of Microsoft's Windows operating system. If you run a computer using Windows, you're not just paying for the programmers who put the program together and the corporate operations that brought it to market. You're also paying a hidden tax of well over $20 that Microsoft has had to pay to other patent holders. This is true whether you bought your copy of Windows on CD or pre-installed on a laptop, desktop, or server machine."

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Trade Shows and Conferences

KDE at CeBIT 2007 Report (KDE.News)

KDE.News has the better-late-than-never report on KDE at CeBIT 2007. "KDE was present at Cebit 2007 in Hannover, the world's largest IT fair. The booth was located inside the LinuxPark in Hall 5, where Linux New Media had given us and other open source projects the opportunity to present their work. Alexander Neundorf, KDE buildsystem maintainer and the booth manager in charge for large parts of the event, considers this year's CeBIT "a very successful event for KDE"."

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Former OSDL CEO Launches Startup (eWeek)

eWeek looks at Collaborative Software Initiative, a new company headed by Stuart Cohen, former CEO of the Open Source Development Labs. "CSI will focus on building noncompetitive, essential software for vertical industries in a collaborative environment to help companies solve their shared IT problems. The business model for the company is simple: Develop and support essential code that does not exist today and which meets the needs and requirements of a number of competitive companies in vertical industries -- such as compliance and regulatory software for the financial services market -- at a significantly lower cost than if the company were to develop this internally or outsource it, and then offer support for it."

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Mandriva raising new funds for Linux business (ZDNet)

ZDNet covers a new funding effort by Mandriva. "Mandriva, a struggling seller of the Linux operating system, is in the process of raising "a minimum of 3 million euros," or $4.1 million, the French company said Monday. The funds will be used to exit bankruptcy protection and to complete the acquisition of server software company Linbox, a merger the companies agreed upon in September 2006 but have been unable to complete."

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Microsoft's 'Men in Black' kill Florida open standards legislation ( reports on Microsoft funded lobbying efforts to defeat open data formats. "It was just a bit of text advocating open data formats that was slipped into a Florida State Senate bill at the last minute with no fanfare, but within 24 hours three Microsoft-paid lobbyists, all wearing black suits, were pressuring members of the Senate Committee on Governmental Operations (COGO) to remove the words they didn't like from Senate bill 1974." (Thanks to Lisa)

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Palm Treo with Linux OS to be available by year end ( reports on Palm's plans to sell Linux-based mobile phones. "Palm Inc. announced Tuesday that it was mulling a developing the Linux-based operating system on its Treo line of handhelds. Palm chief executive, Ed Colligan said they had been working on this for many years and that the first sets with Linux loaded should be out by the end of the year. However he stressed that the company was not abandoning the Microsoft's Windows Mobile platform and would continue to sell it alongside the Linux one. Colligan said the introduction of Linux would "improve the reliability and performance and stability" of Palm products."

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SQL-Ledger license change

The SQL-Ledger project, a web-based accounting system, has announced a license change. "We made it into slashdot again because we changed the license for version 2.8.0 to an open source license. A copy of the license can be viewed here. The license did not take away the freedom to make changes nor did it take away the freedom to redistribute however it took away the freedom to just rip out the logo replace it with something else and call it another program. The license was misinterpreted by the geeks on slashdot and I even had hatemail sent to me, how dare I change the license. I can't repeat what was said because it was not pretty."

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Q&A: New Linux group to push OS toward common ground (TechWorld)

TechWorld has an interview with Linux Foundation board member Christine Martino. "Q: What is the Linux Foundation going to focus on? A: It's really around three big things: standardising and driving the Linux Standard Base [LSB] efforts, promotion and collaboration. I think it's very good to have a neutral party, a non-vendor, promoting Linux. It also sets up a platform for collaboration, whether it's [involving] the technical community, developers and even end users."

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Intel debuts Linux-based "Mobile Internet Device" (LinuxDevices) takes a look at Intel's "Mobile Internet Devices". "MIDs are smaller and more appliance-like than the clunky UMPC (ultra-mobile PC) concept co-launched about a year ago by Intel as the UMPC and by Microsoft as Origami. Whereas UMPCs have 5- to 7-inch displays and boot the slow-moving Windows GUI, MIDs have 4- to 6-inch displays, boot simplified Linux-based UIs with "instant-on" performance, and offer consumer price points, according to an IDF presentation by Intel Sr. Engineering Manager Danny Zhang and PengCheng Zou, senior manager of RedFlag Linux's R&D department."

APC (Australian Personal Computer) Magazine has a photo gallery with pictures and screenshots.

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KDE App of the Month is Back with kdesvn (KDE.News)

KDE.News has announced a new KDE app of the month article, this one looks at kdesvn. "After one year of silence we are back with another issue of App of the Month. This time we selected a developer tool, kdesvn. It is a well integrated KDE client for subversion. The overview takes a look at some basic functions. We also have an interview with kdesvn's developer Rajko Albrecht, covering the development process and much more."

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Open source Mule takes the "donkey work" out of ESB (IT Manager's Journal)

Tina Gasperson looks at the Mule project on IT Manager's Journal. "Mule is an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) -- the "glue" between different enterprise applications in different company departments that allows IT managers to move information back and forth seamlessly. Think of disparate enterprise applications as ribs, with the ESB as a backbone that connects everything. Mulesource founder Ross Mason says open source is the best way to make an ESB that is customizable and affordable. In 2000, Mason was working on a large-scale project for a bank. He found himself growing tired of the endless repetitive coding tasks that were necessary to tie disparate applications together for in-house ESBs, calling it "donkey work.""

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Young Scientists Design Open-Source Program at NASA (Wired)

Wired looks at NASA's CosmosCode project, an effort to create open-source code to be used in live space missions. "The program was launched quietly last year under NASA's CoLab entrepreneur outreach program, created by Robert Schingler, 28, and Jessy Cowan-Sharp, 25, of NASA's Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California. Members of the CosmosCode group have been meeting in Second Life and will open the program to the public in the coming weeks, organizers said. "CosmosCode is ... allowing NASA scientists to begin a software project in the public domain, leveraging the true value of open-source software by creating an active community of volunteers," said Cowan-Sharp, a NASA contractor."

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Ubuntu's new Linux sports debugging tool (ZDNet)

ZDNet examines new debugging tools in Ubuntu's upcoming Feisty Fawn release. "Feisty Fawn, also known as version 7.04, comes with software that can send debugging information to help programmers track down the problems that cause applications to crash, Canonical Chief Executive Mark Shuttleworth said in an interview. "There are potentially millions of users of an application on Ubuntu, but they don't have a relationship with us or upstream developers," Shuttleworth said. "If we can connect those two groups more effectively, it's good for both of them.""

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A Debian developer's thoughts on the state of Debian (Linux-Watch)

Linux-Watch has an open letter from Debian Developer Thaddeus H. Black. " Debian's main, high-volume mailing lists necessarily give a distorted view of Debian Development culture. A relative handful of disgruntled people, not all of whom are even Debian Developers, account for a surprisingly large fraction of the volume on the lists, and for an even larger fraction of the heat there."

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Ubuntu Linux forges tighter DB2 ties (CRN Australia)

CRN Australia reports on the availability of IBM's DB2 DBMS software for the Ubuntu distribution. "IBM's DB2 has long been a Linux-friendly, cross-platform database. But as of this week, there will be improved coexistence between DB2 and the latest Ubuntu 6.06 Linux release. The latest IBM database will now download and deploy easily from the Ubuntu desktop. If users want DB2, they can go to the download site, and Ubuntu automates the download and installs it."

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Remotely executable Wi-Fi bug found in Linux (ComputerWorld)

ComputerWorld reports on an exploitable bug in the MadWi-Fi Linux kernel device driver for Atheros-based Wi-Fi chipsets. "A bug has been found in a major Linux Wi-Fi driver that can allow an attacker to take control of a laptop -- even when it is not on a Wi-Fi network. There have not been many Linux Wi-Fi device drivers, and this is apparently the first remotely executable Wi-Fi bug. It affects the widely used MadWi-Fi Linux kernel device driver for Atheros-based Wi-Fi chipsets, according to Laurent Butti, a researcher from France Telecom Orange, who found the flaw and released the information in a presentation at last month's Black Hat conference in Amsterdam." (Thanks to Duncan)

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