LXer Weekly Roundup for 07-Oct-2012

Posted by Scott_Ruecker on Oct 8, 2012 2:41 AM
LXer Linux News; By Scott Ruecker (Phoenix, U.S.)



LXer Feature: 07-Oct-2012

The latest installment of the Weekly Roundup. Enjoy!

LibreOffice vs. OpenOffice, Not Always Simple: LibreOffice may have the community and momentum, but that doesn't mean it is the better choice for every document.

Slackware 14.0 Linux distribution has arrived - update: The Slackware developers have released version 14 of the oldest still-maintained Linux distribution, with kernel version 3.2.29 and numerous updated components such as the Xfce 4.10 and KDE 4.8.5 desktop interfaces

Microsoft releases JavaScript alternative: Microsoft has released a new JavaScript development environment, dubbed TypeScript, and says it is designed to help developers write more complex apps with the popular scripting language. Long-time Reg readers may recall that Microsoft has form giving the world new technologies, but not always for altruistic reasons. During its epic antitrust battle with the US Department of Justice, Microsoft's in-house use of the terms “embrace and extend” or “embrace and smother” came to light to describe the practice of releasing non-standard products, among them software development tools, then using Microsoft's market share to none-too-gently steer the industry towards buying those products to the detriment of competitors.

Ubuntu has a bigger problem than its Amazon blunder: All searches performed through the Dash are sent to Amazon and Canonical: "This by itself is a problem because nobody intends to search Amazon for sensitive personal information. For instance, someone might search for a file with a Social Security number or with a specific text string that is in no way intended to be read by anyone else. They're ostensibly searching through their own local file system, after all, and the thought that by default that search string will be sent out to not one, but two, third parties is extremely disturbing."

OpenStreetMap makes first open map of the world: Everyone is talking about maps lately. Google maps are no longer on the iPhone. Apple maps have some serious bugs. Luckily, open source maps are making a move.

DARPA launches first phase of "open source" vehicle design challenge: Today, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) opened up registration for the FANG Challenges, a set of three next-generation military vehicle design competitions that will kick off in January, and will put tools based on approaches borrowed from software development and chip design in the hands of teams of engineers and designers. In an effort to reinvent how such complex systems are designed and built, DARPA is preparing for the first real test of its efforts to use open-source software and Web collaboration—with millions of dollars in prize money at stake.

"I am calling you from Windows": A tech support scammer dials Ars Technica: When the call came yesterday morning, I assumed at first I was being trolled—it was just too perfect to be true. My phone showed only "Private Caller" and, when I answered out of curiosity, I was connected to "John," a young man with a clear Indian accent who said he was calling from "Windows Technical Support." My computer, he told me, had alerted him that it was infested with viruses. He wanted to show me the problem—then charge me to fix it.

From Noobs to Experts: Is There an ABC for Linux Distros?: "To every thing there is a season," as the old saying goes, and "a time to every purpose under the heaven." Can the same be said for Linux distros? That is the question that's been on many Linux bloggers' minds. Specifically, "What Distros Have You Used, in What Order?" was the title of the Ask Slashdot post that got the conversational ball rolling, and it was a provocative one.

A Herd of Excellent Free Web Testers for Linux Webmasters: While Linux has all kinds of powerful and excellent networking utiltities, there are times when you want to see how things look from the outside. Check out this sampling of free websites that test performance, tell you where things are, perform diagnostics and display the results in nice graphs and charts that even a pointy-haired boss can understand.

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