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KDE 4.0, A Call for Perspective

KDE 4.0 was released last week and all hell seemed to break loose. What I view as a solid first step in a very positive reaction was met with some applause, but generally scorn and complaints. I think some perspective is needed, and I humbly offer to try and provide some. I’d like to take issue with some things I see that are just plain wrong.

Free Ontario - the List

Join the discussion for a grassroots campaign to bring F/LOSS (Free/Libre Open Source Software) to government in the Province of Ontario. After Ontario, we’ll take on the other provinces, one by one, until we have a Free Canada. And then on to other countries...

Free software goes Hollywood

As the Writers Guild of America's strike enters its fourth month, one of its key issues -- the sharing of profits from online distribution -- is encouraging the rise of new production companies that are exploring alternative methods of production and distribution. Along with Hollywood Disrupted and Founders Media Group, these new companies include Virtual Artists, whose goal is to bring free software developers and Hollywood writers together to experiment.

Microsoft at Sydney Linux User Group, Friday 25 January

Yes, you read right, Microsoft will be represented at the next SLUG meeting. We've confirmed that Microsoft will be visiting SLUG on Friday 25 January. If you can't make it to the meeting, please post your questions at out wiki.

California HealthCare: Open Source Market Assessment

Anin-depth article on F/OSS EHR's including comparisons and contrasts of the front-runners has been published by California Healthcare Foundation:Open-source electronic health record (EHR) systems, have proliferated in recent years. This executive summary presents the findings from an evaluation designed to determine whether these systems, commonly referred to as free and open-source software (FOSS), are suitable as ambulatory EHRs.

Linspire PC: Even Better Than the gPC

The gPC has gotten a lot of attention, but it still has its flaws such as minimal hardware and a relatively untested Linux distribution. The new Linspire PC solves some of those flaws.

The First Day of the KDE 4.0 Release Event

The first day of the KDE 4.0 Release Event in Mountain View, California, got off to a great start on Thursday, with attendees fuelled by a hearty breakfast provided by Google. Then, the "un-conference" was ready to get underway, and within minutes the first topics were added to the whiteboards. Meanwhile, the room filled with people from across North America and worldwide, all with an interest in KDE. Read on for more details.

SimplyMEPIS 7.0 is a keeper

The long awaited SimplyMEPIS 7.0 was finally released just before Christmas, and it was worth the wait. In this mature and sometimes underrated operating system, everything looks good and works well. Because I was familiar with previous MEPIS versions, the first thing I noticed in 7.0 was the lovely new artwork. The tasteful theme begins at the live CD boot screen and continues through the boot splash and login screen to the desktop.

Uh Oh! Microsoft Already Supports OpenDocument Format?

Microsoft shoots itself in the foot by admitting that ODF support is doable and implicitly suggesting that OOXML is therefore redundant

PCLinuxOS 2008: And we have another winner!

I waxed poetic about PCLinuxOS 2007 a few months ago when I compared it to Mint (and even earlier about version 0.93a). After 8 months, Texstar and the "Ripper Gang" are in the process of releasing another version (about time...). The new version, PCLinuxOS 2008, will ship with KDE 4, but at the time of writing, the final isn't out yet. They recently released a so-called "MiniMe" version of the final product with KDE 3.5, and it's better than ever- to the point that I would actually use it.

And now you can sell things with open source, too. Introducing Magento

Jack Aboutboul at Red Hat clued me into an interesting open-source ecommerce platform today. Called Magento, it's built by Varien and is "a feature-rich, professional open-source eCommerce solution offering merchants complete flexibility and control over the look, content, and functionality of their online store." Put in English, Magento is an open-source solution for setting up and managing an online store.

Linux printing with cups can be a real shell game

One of the most frustrating parts of the Linux world is printing. If the printer is a postscript one then there are no problems at all and printing is as easy as just identifying the printer as a single line in a printcap file and away you go. Most modern, low end printers and color printers are not postscript and to make matters worse, their drivers and method of printing are dependent on the windows operating system for much of the work. Fortunately manufactures are slowly (oh, so slowly) recognizing that there are other operating systems than windows and are providing crude drivers so their products can at least produce an output under Linux.

Automator For Linux: Xnee

GNU Xnee is a suite of programs that can record, replay and distribute user actions under the X11 environment. Think of it as a robot that can imitate the job you just did.

ODF vs. OOXML on the Eve of the BRM

If you're reading this blog entry, you've probably been following the battle between ODF and OOXML. If so, you may be thinking of that conflict as a classic standards war, but in fact, it goes much deeper than that label would suggest. What is happening between the proponents of ODF and OOXML is only a skirmish in a bigger battle that involves a fundamental reordering of forces, ideologies, stakeholders, and economics at the interface of society and information technology.

Can Linux finally unite Korea?

Under the banner of "Hana Linux" - literally "One" Linux - the two countries have agreed to work on a groundbreaking IT development project that might shatter the final Cold War boundary. South Korea is one of Linux's biggest converts. Since discovering the free operating system in 2003, officials have unveiled plans to switch all government-run offices to Linux. Now under the terms of the agreement signed between the two states, South Korea will set up Linux training centres in North Korea.

An Industry and Technology Revolution is on the Horizon

Limo, and in a slightly different way Android, have killed the standards-based approach to open source development in mobile. 2008 signals the start of fundamental changes to the mobile software market as the industry begins the next generation of Linux platform deployments.

First school open source software packages handed over to teachers

First distributives [sic] developed on the basis of Linux OS within the program to equip Russian schools with the open source software have been handed over to the informatics teachers in the Perm Region. The developers are sure their product will not only protect teachers from copyright advocates but might result in the technical literacy of pupils to improve.

OpenOffice.org dismisses pro-OOXML report

OpenOffice.org has dismissed an analyst report from Burton Group which claims that Microsoft's OOXML document format is preferable to the ODF.

Building a Home File Server

Setting up a file server doesn't need to be complicated. With three desktop machines (Kubuntu, Win XP and a testbed, which is currently running ReactOS) and a laptop (Xubuntu) in use at home, our IT is reaching small office proportions, and like many small offices, we run into file sharing problems. Peer-to-peer networking is fine when all the machines are on, but inevitably it happens that the file I want is on a PC that isn't running. Even worse, it be on my testbed machine that is currently in pieces or undergoing yet another upgrade. So, we need an always-on server that any of us can access any time, but if it is always on, it needs to be quiet, reliable and cheap to run.

Microsoft Says It Will Release Binary Office Formats - Which? -- Updated

There's nothing like an EU Commission investigation to get Microsoft to open up a little, is there? Today Brian Jones has two announcements, that Microsoft is making binary Office formats (.doc; .xls; .ppt) available under the Open Specification Promise. You won't have to email them and be evaluated any more. From what I've heard, the way it worked was that only companies and governments could get them before. Of course Jones tells it a different way, as I'll show you. The second announcement is about yet another translator project, an open source "Binary Format-to-ISO/IEC JTC 1 DIS 29500 Translator Project".

[Does this mean we'll finally get nested table support for MS formats in OpenOffice.org? - Sander]

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