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Wiliest Ways to Keep the NSA at Bay
February 28, 2014
The death of online privacy had already been proclaimed long before Edward Snowden landed in the international spotlight, but if it wasn't confirmed back then, Snowden's NSA revelations surely must have extinguished the last vestiges of hope in even the most die-hard optimists. "We're in a predicament," said Phil Zimmermann, Pretty Good Privacy creator and cofounder and president of Silent Circle.
Bruce Momjian: PostgreSQL Prefers the Scenic Route
February 26, 2014
Bruce Momjian years ago salvaged a nearly abandoned open source database project: PostgreSQL. Now he heads an international group helping to keep its community growing. He also is a key architect for a commercial database company that supports his advisory group and the Postgres open source community. PostreSQL, or "Postgres," is a popular open source object-relational database management system.
The Rise of the Ethical Hacktivist
February 25, 2014
When Saul Alinsky wrote Rules for Radicals more than four decades ago, the world was a very different place than it is today. Protests and demonstrations were among the most common tactics for bringing about social change, and they were used on such a broad scale that they helped define the Vietnam War era and counterculture movement of the 1960s and 1970s.
News Flash from Redmond: FOSS Causes Dissatisfaction!
February 24, 2014
Here in the Linux community, we're all familiar with the many benefits that come with using open source software -- customizability, interoperability, and freedom from vendor lock-in, to name just a few examples. Well, Linux Girl has shocking news to report. It turns out there's also a BIG PROBLEM associated with open source software that we've all apparently overlooked: dissatisfaction!
Raising Linux to Grow Open Source
February 19, 2014
The open source business model has an inherent ability to bring software rivals together. This approach to developing and distributing software keeps expanding the usefulness and success of the Linux operating system as well. Linux has not yet come close to replacing Windows on the desktop, but open source is much more than Linux. Its "co-opetive" nature is spreading through the enterprise.
Dear Adobe: Make Software for Linux Too
February 18, 2014
What if commercial software developers for popular Windows products sold Linux versions to a waiting market of open source users? Think in terms of paying a subscription fee to use a Linux version of Adobe's Photoshop image manipulation software, for starters. Is porting commercial products like Photoshop as a paid product for Linux a viable idea?
Google's Dirty Little Android Secrets Leaked
February 14, 2014
The Android operating system, which Google touts as open, isn't. Google imposes strict restrictions on smartphone manufacturers and app developers in its Android mobile application distribution agreement, according to excerpts of documents revealed by Ben Edelman, an associate professor at the Harvard Business School. The information was obtained from two MADAs admitted in open court.
Mass Surveillance: The Day We Fight Back
February 10, 2014
Well it's been roughly eight months since the first major leaks about the NSA's PRISM surveillance program began to appear, and at last a coordinated global protest is imminent. Scheduled to take place on Tuesday, Feb. 11, The Day We Fight Back involves thousands of participating websites as well as protests, speaking events, street theater performances and more.
Strong Man Snowden Rings the Bell in Geekland
February 03, 2014
Openness is changing the world, as a very wise writer pointed out not so very long ago, and what better example than the parade of government-spying revelations we've seen in recent months? It's clearly a different world since Edward Snowden appeared on the scene -- though not everyone agrees on whether it's a better one or not. In the eyes of some, he deserves a peace prize.
The Case of the Missing OS, or Did Apple Eat Pear?
January 27, 2014
Here in the Linux community, it's no secret that there are more flavors of our favorite operating system than most of us can keep track of. That doesn't mean, however, that one can just up and disappear without anyone noticing. Case in point: Pear OS. One day it's freely available for download, offering a remarkably Mac-like experience that's nevertheless based on Linux.
Quirky Linux Gets More Pep Out of Puppy
January 23, 2014
Quirky is a very interesting Linux distro that is a developmental sideline of the main Puppy Linux family. I expected some quirks in Quirky's design and performance, despite its mature growth to version 6.1 released on Jan. 1. However, the few quirks I found did not mar its performance. Quirky was easy to set up and fun to run. It is just as reliable and complete as the main Puppy Linux distro.
The Blackphone vs. the NSA
January 20, 2014
Well Linux bloggers have made it plain from the get-go that privacy is among their top concerns for 2014, and recent events have done nothing to shift that focus. President Obama's momentous speech proposing NSA reforms wasn't the only clarion call last week. We also heard from Mozilla, which appealed to security researchers to help keep Firefox source code unadulterated and backdoor-free.
Red Hat and CentOS: A Great Thing or a Gates Thing?
January 13, 2014
There's no doubt privacy is a highly pertinent goal for 2014, but partnership and collaboration are nothing to sneeze at, either. That's why the news out of North Carolina last week was so exciting. "Red Hat and the CentOS Project are joining forces to build a new CentOS," the press release began, "capable of driving forward development and adoption of next-generation open source technologies."
Here's Lookin' at You, Kid: Dreaming of Privacy in 2014
January 06, 2014
Well another year has come and gone here in the Linux blogosphere, and what a different world it is as we enter 2014. Certainly most notably, our friends at the NSA have made it clear that any notions of privacy have pretty much gone out the window. Go Tor! Speaking of Windows, XP's final days are now finally being counted down. Cheers to that!
Ubuntu's Lonely Road
December 16, 2013
It may be lonely at the top, as the old saying goes, but apparently it can also be lonely a few notches down -- at least if Ubuntu is any example. Though not currently in the No. 1 spot on DistroWatch -- for whatever that's worth -- Ubuntu is often credited with having achieved more mainstream acceptance than any other Linux distro so far.
AllSeen Alliance to Standardize Internet of Things
December 10, 2013
The Linux Foundation on Tuesday announced the formation of the AllSeen Alliance, a cross-industry consortium working on a standard of interoperability among devices connected to the Internet of Things. LG will incorporate the Alliance's technology into the smart TVs it offers next year. The alliance's technology framework is based on Qualcomm's AllJoyn open source project.
Open Source, Closed Doors? FOSS and the Racial Divide
December 09, 2013
FOSS fans are no strangers to difficult topics, and for proof one need look no further than the ongoing sexism controversy that has been debated so many times in every bar and watering hole of the Linux blogosphere. Recently, however, one came up that's enjoyed far less prominence -- at least since Linux Girl began keeping track lo these many years ago.
A Collective Bah! for Redmond's Humbug
December 02, 2013
Well Black Friday has come and gone for another year here in the land of stars and stripes, and so has that small obstacle known as Thanksgiving. Now it's Cyber Monday at last, and we can all sit back and shop to our hearts' content, unimpeded by inconvenient social gatherings or worker-welfare concerns. Down at the Broken Windows Lounge, there was a steady stream of patrons seeking refuge over the weekend.
The Graying of the Linux Kernel Community
November 25, 2013
There are few things more gratifying to those of us here in the Linux blogosphere than seeing another user give the proprietary world the boot and make the switch to our favorite operating system. If anything can come close, however, it would be the birth of a new forum for advocating for Linux. So let the trumpets sound! This month has brought news of just that: Linux Voice.
The Simmering Devops Debate
November 18, 2013
When open source software was still getting established in the enterprise five years ago or so, there was a lot of discussion about so-called open core ripoffs. The concern was that anyone and everyone was proclaiming an association with open source software, even if most or all of their products were proprietary. Today, a similar debate has arisen about devops.
A Tale of 7 Patents: Rockstar v. Google
November 11, 2013
Patent warfare is a veritable fixture of the mobile world these days, sadly, and -- by virtue of Android -- that heaps a whole lot of mess within the boundaries of the blogosphere's Linux territories. We've seen plenty of skirmishes come and go already, of course, but the latest example is being called nothing short of "thermonuclear" war.
Ode to Project Ara
November 04, 2013
Ever since Burger King hit the proverbial nail on the head with its famed "Have It Your Way" slogan back in 1974, everyone has known that people like to -- well, have it their own way. Customization has been a growing trend, but until recently, smartphones were a glaring exception. Linux Girl can no longer even count the number of times she's asked for a big "L" and an image of Tux emblazoned on her device.
Hyperloop Project Revs Up
October 31, 2013
A project to build a super-high-speed transportation system in California is gaining traction. JumpStartFund on Thursday revealed its users had voted to select the official name, "Hyperloop Transportation Technologies Inc.," for the company undertaking the challenge. aerospace engineer Marco Villa, Ph.D., and civil engineer Patricia Galloway, Ph.D., will lead the project.
SalesAgility Sweetens CRM With Open Source Sugar
October 28, 2013
SalesAgility last week rolled out SuiteCRM, an application that's designed to offer a fully open source alternative to SugarCRM Professional Edition. Built upon the latest release of SugarCRM Community Edition, the software includes reporting, workflow, quotes, products, security and portal extensions designed to deliver functionality previously found only in the proprietary, paid-for editions of SugarCRM.

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