Hope you all had a fantastic Easter and that this note finds you and
your loved ones well.
Just a quick wrap up of FOSS, linux and open source news globally and in
the region :-)
1. Form, shape and direction of Geelong Linux User Group
There's been very little discussion of what form this group would like
Would we like talks? Discussions? A social catchup somewhere?
Debate on Archlinux vs Ubuntu? Gnome vs Unity?
Are we happy keeping the group to an email list?
Don't forget to tell your colleagues and mates about this list :-)
2. BarCampMelbourne 28th-29th July, Urban Camp at Royal Park, Melbourne
http://barcampmel.org | @barcampmel
**DISCLAIMER: I'm a previous BarCamp organiser**
For the first time in three years BarCamp comes back to Melbourne (after
the fabulous BarCampGeelong in 2011). Can you believe that tickets are
only $10, which includes dorm style accommodation and meals?! The
AWESOME is free!
Tix are selling very very fast, so you'll need to get in quick.
3. Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (long term support released)
Canonical's latest release of the desktop-based Ubuntu distribution
features a raft of improvements, including a new heads-up display.
If you work in a Uni or research institute the AARNet mirror may be your
best place to get the new release;
4. ICT Geelong news
The latest news from the region's peak ICT body can be found at;
In this issue - roll out plans for the NBN in the Geelong region,
upcoming ICT events and success stories of ICT businesses in the area.
5. OLPC study shows positive impacts on some skill sets
"This paper presents the impact of the first large-scale randomized
evaluation of the OLPC program, using data collected after 15 months of
implementation in 319 primary schools in rural Peru. The results
indicate that the program increased the ratio of computers per student
from 0.12 to 1.18 in treatment schools. This expansion in access
translated into substantial increases in use both at school and at home.
No evidence is found of effects on enrollment and test scores in Math
and Language. Some positive effects are found, however, in general
cognitive skills as measured by Raven’s Progressive Matrices, a verbal
fluency test and a Coding test"
6. Linux Australia seeks community feedback on changing name
Linux Australia, the parent organisation of activities such as
linux.conf.au, and which has grown the number and breadth of activities
in which it is involved is seeking community feedback on a possible name
Have your say here:
7. Linux Users' Victoria
Check here for upcoming events (mostly Melbourne based);
8. Geelong Web Tech and Social Media Meetup
is on next on Wednesday 2nd May
More info at:
9. And in other open source news;
Open-source hardware movement seeks legitimacy
A nonprofit organization, Open Source Hardware Association, is being
formed to promote open-source hardware
AGAM SHAH, Computerworld
What’s New in Firefox 12 and Chrome 18
CRAIG BUCKLER Sitepoint
Red Hat Certified Professional of the Year
How journalists can create Guardian-style data visualisations
Guardian launches Miso project, releasing open source code for data
SARAH MARSHALL Journalism.co.uk
Your feedback and suggestions on this list are always warmly welcomed,
In the vein of posting something that I found interesting...
I'm going to assume people know about upstart and systemd, two new
(next generation?) system init.. systems. Recently Mark Shuttleworth
announced some things about the next version of Ubuntu, and quashed
the "move to systemd" rumours. Not surprising, I guess (Ubuntu keeps
trying to do things their own way...), but they'll be basically the
only major distro still using it (besides ChromeOS, does that count as
a distro?). Everyone else haven't made a move, or have switched to
systemd. This is where it gets good (drama-wise). Shuttleworth
started slagging "the competition" and heavily trying to sell upstart
(IMHO) in his post:
"Rumours and allegations of a move from Upstart to SystemD are
unfounded: Upstart has a huge battery of tests, the competition has
virtually none. Upstart knows everything it wants to be, the
competition wants to be everything."
Of course, people wanted to hear what Lennart Poettering (creator of
systemd) had to say. He posted:
"I think this decision is not good for the Linux ecosystem. Ubuntu has
now become an island that is growing more or more apart from any other
bigger commercial Linux. Because they have not adopted systemd they
will have to continue to develop and support infrastructure (such as
ConsoleKit, independent udev) that is officially orphaned by its
developers and maintainers. They are stuck with a half-obsolete stack
that receives no new development. Of course, Canonical could step up
and invest major work in the development of their platform, but that
would definitely be a first for them, and I seriously doubt they have
enough knowledgeable engineers for that. Canonical contributes barely
anything to the Linux plumbing layer, much the same way they stay away
from the kernel. There are now two options for them: a) stay stuck
forever with a half-obsolete stack or b) invest a lot of work to
develop their stack entirely on their own in order to stay competitive
Both authors posted more at the links above.
This could be an interesting 'battle', and that's how they (or
Shuttleworth, at least) is framing it. Ubuntu is easily one of the
most popular distros for Desktop users, so it holds a lot of sway. If
ChromeOS/Chromebooks explode, that will help expand the
"upstart-using" market. However, Lennart makes some good points about
an outdated software stack, and history shows Ubuntu's not real good
at maintaining core software/giving back to the community. They're
better at taking what's out there and putting little niceties on top
for user interaction (although with Unity...).
Either way, it's something cool to keep an eye on.
(For those playing at home Lennart Poettering is the creator of
pulseaudio, and has almost as fervent fans/haters as Shuttleworth and
Ubuntu. He's also quite opinionated, and says things like "BSD isn't
relevant anymore" (last year)).