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If you like to keep your hands on the keyboard, you may find it tricky to launch new apps, open folder and documents, and change tracks in your music playlist. Katapult is an application launcher that does everything the Alt-F2 run dialog does, and much more.
Sun Microsystems' on-off relationship with Linux continues with news that the company is looking to emulate the Linux distribution model in an effort to win some mindshare among users for its OpenSolaris software. InfoWorld reports that in an effort to catch the Linux wave, Sun has announced Project Indiana which will see the company releasing its OpenSolaris (OS) operating system as binaries in 2008.
IBM is hoping to lure Linux users and others to the operating system with its first public beta, providing a more complete virtualization offering.
On Friday July 13th, INCITS V1 met via teleconference for 3 hours but failed to reach a 2/3 consensus necessary to recommend an "Approval, with comments" position on Microsoft "Office Open XML" (OOXML) document specification. An important factor in the V1 vote was the large number of members who joined very late in the process. There was a clear pattern in the voting where the long-time V1 members voted for the "Disapproval, with comments" position as well as "Abstention, with comments" while the newer members voted overwhelmingly "Yes, with comments" and against "Abstention with comments." This is not surprising since the new members were largely Microsoft business partners.
[Not about Linux, but likely to be of interest to our readers — Sander]
I remain frustrated by the complete lack of marketing and business sense that many open source companies continue to display. I thought that we were past the whole foolishness of competing in the ghetto amongst ourselves vs. the big proprietary guys with lots of dough but it seems that the argument has just started taking other forms. If you work for an open source company and your team is focused on trying to beat other open source products you are doomed to economic failure.
Welcome to this year's 29th issue of DistroWatch Weekly! As you might know Ladislav is taking a much needed vacation and we hope he is having a wonderful and relaxing time. I'm Susan Linton and some of you may remember me from when I filled in for Ladislav last summer. Perhaps some others might know me from my website or articles published here and there. Although I can't adequately fill Ladislav's shoes, I will be writing this and next week's DistroWatch Weekly. So here we go. Happy reading!
Every attempt I have ever made at using Linux has left me disappointed. I am a geek, but I do not relish spending 3 days to get a wireless card working when I can do it in 5 minutes in Windows.
The new version sports few new features but rather quite a few changes under the hood. Software errors are handled much better in a way that they can be easily reported to the developers. The so called slave mode has proven to be stable on MS Windows and is in use now daily. It is used to connect a legacy app called Turbomed. That way a document archive has been established. Along with a fast image scanner it has proven to be efficient enough for use during patient consultations. The MS Windows version has seen some love. The DOS Windows have been removed. Looks cleaner. Apart from that the installer is now even smarter and detects the user interface language.
It was just a month ago that the open-source Avivo driver for the ATI Radeon X1000 (R500) series was introduced to the public, but in this time we've seen some great progress made. This open-source R500 driver now contains RandR 1.2 support, support for a variety of R500 graphics cards, and most recently support for Shadow Framebuffer was added. The Avivo driver still isn't comparable when it comes to the features found in the fglrx driver or even the open-source Radeon driver for the R200/300/400 series, but it's a work in progress. If you are running into problems with the fglrx driver, stuck using the VESA driver for one reason or another, or just want to get rid of the binary blob and experiment with this open-source driver, we have written a guide for setting up the Avivo driver from source on Ubuntu.
A while ago I started thinking about how multi-touch and gesture support could look like. Looking around on the web and in the research literature, I found that all the multitouch systems are a hack (I'm talking about software integration here, not the hardware!). Multi-touch support needs to be in the windowing system. Any client-side approach is wrong. (Feel free to disagree with me on that). We don't need gesture support in X. Gestures depend a lot on the context. What we really need is a way to convey events from a touch device to a client application.
Photosyth takes a large collection of photos of a place or an object, analyzes them for similarities, and then displays the photos in a reconstructed three-dimensional space, showing you how each one relates to the next. Microsoft purchased the technology but it's impressive never the less.
[What projects in the FOSS world deliver something like this? - TracyAnne]
On Linux on the desktop, episode 24, we look at a proposal for a high-end Linux laptop with only Free Software. We also look at gNewSense and Gobuntu two Free Software only Linux distributions. A second Open Linux phone goes on sale for developers . A Intel ClassmatePC with Linux review story. Linux coming pre-installed for European small and medium businesses. Acer India introduces a Linux laptop. And IBM promises standards-based patent protection for all.
Moshe Bar, openMosix founder and project leader, has announced plans to end the openMosix Project effective March 1, 2008. The increasing power and availability of low cost multi-core processors is rapidly making single-system image (SSI) Clustering less of a factor in computing. The direction of computing is clear and key developers are moving into newer virtualization approaches and other projects.
Patents are supposed to give inventors an incentive to create things that spur economic growth. For some companies, especially in the pharmaceutical business, patents do just that by allowing them to pull in billions in profits from brand-name, blockbuster drugs. But for most public companies, patents don’t pay off, say a couple of researchers who have crunched the numbers.
The Debian GNU/kFreeBSD porters are pleased to announce that there is now a Debian GNU/kFreeBSD amd64 machine available to the Debian developers. It is kindly hosted by "ETH Zürich, Department of Physics". We would like to thank them for their contribution to the GNU/kFreeBSD development.
Running the regular diff between two text files to see the differences is not so elegant for the human eye to decode. Luckily there are plenty of tools out there to make this easy.
In this article I will describe a very useful program: GNU Screen. Usually this program is used by people who have a shell account on a Unix server. But it can be also helpful to people who haven’t yet started to use a terminal or even Linux/Unix at all. Screen — simply — is a program which enables users to create more system shells without the need of logging in multiple times. Moreover it allows to leave programs running after you’ve logged out. What can it be useful for?
H. Peter Anvin submitted a series of patches rewriting the x86 setup code, "this patch set replaces the x86 setup code, which is currently all in assembly, with a version written in C, using the '.code16gcc' feature of binutils (which has been present since at least 2001.)" He went on to explain why he did this, "the new code is vastly easier to read, and, I hope, debug. It should be noted that I found a fair number of minor bugs while going through this code, and have attempted to correct them."
I am software developer, and I write software for the .NET Framework / Windows platform. A short while ago I noticed that I was no longer doing development from home, so I didn't really need Visual Studio 2005, SQL Server 2005, Internet Information Services, etc. etc. Enter Linux.
[Nice story of a Microsoft MVP who tried Vista but went Linux instead. — Sander]
Everyone loves to bash Windows, and for the most part, there’s good reason to. With questionable business practices and a massive amount of bugs found inside the OS, sometimes it’s a wonder that Windows is as popular as it is. With that being said, in any honest debate, you have to give credit where credit is due, and with over 90% of the market share, Microsoft is surely due a little credit.
[The week has just begun and already there's a candidate for next week's FUD of the week. Happy deFUDding! — Sander]
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