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Xubuntu: Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 1 is released!

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 2014-08-28 21:16

The Xubuntu team is pleased to announce the immediate release of Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 1. This is the first beta towards the final release in October. Before this beta we have landed various of enhancements and some new features. Now it’s time to start polishing the last edges and improve the stability.

The first beta release also marks the end of the period to land new features in the form of Ubuntu Feature Freeze. This means any new updates to packages should be bug fixes only, the Xubuntu team is committed to fixing as many of the bugs as possible before the final release.

The beta 1 release is available for download by torrents and direct downloads from

Highlights and known issues New features and enhancements
  • Inxi, a tool to gather system information, is now included
  • To allow users to use pkexec for selected applications instead of gksu(do), appropriate profiles are now included for Thunar and Mousepad
  • The display dialog has been updated, multiple dispays can now be arranged by drag and drop
  • The power manager can now control the keyboard-backlight and features a new panel plugin, which shows the battery’s status, other connected devices with batteries and controls the display’s backlight brightness
  • The themes now support Gtk3.12
  • The alt-tab dialog can now be clicked with the mouse to select a window
  • Xubuntu minimal install available – information on installation and testing will follow shortly.
Bug fixes
  • Setting-related menu items earlier available only under Settings manager are now shown and searchable in Whiskermenu (1310264)
  • Presentation mode in Xfce4 power manager is now working (1193716)
  • apt-offline is now functional, previously “Something is wrong with the apt system” (1357217)
Known Issues
  • Video corruption when booting a virtual livesession (1357702)
  • Failure to configure wifi in live-session (1351590)
  • com32r error on boot with usb (1325801)
New application versions in the Xubuntu packageset
  • Catfish 1.2.1
  • Xfwm4 4.11.2
  • Updates to xfdesktop4 (4.11.7), xfce4-panel (4.11.1), login screen (lightdm-gtk-greeter 1.9.0)
  • xfce4-appfinder (4.11.0)
  • xfce4-notifyd (0.2.4-3)
  • xfce4-settings (4.11.3)
  • xfce4-power-manager (1.3.2)
  • xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin (1.4.0)
  • Light-locker-settings (1.4.0)
  • Menulibre (2.0.5)
  • Mugshot (0.2.4)
Other changes

XChat is removed from the default installation; we recommend trying the Pidgin IRC feature if you need to connect sporadically. Otherwise, if you prefer XChat, it’s still available for installation in the repositories.

Kubuntu: Kubuntu 14.10 Beta 1, Adds Plasma 5 Preview Option

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 2014-08-28 21:10
Kubuntu 14.10 beta 1 is out now for testing by early adopters. This release comes with the stable Plasma 4 we know and love. It also adds another flavour - Kubuntu Plasma 5 Tech Preview.

Canonical Design Team: Saving on download day – caching location specific pages

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 2014-08-28 18:34

On release day we can get up to 8,000 requests second to from people trying to download the new release. In fact, last October (13.10) was the first release day in a long time that the site didn’t crash under the load at some point during the day (huge credit to the infrastructure team). has been running on Drupal, but we’ve been gradually migrating it to a more bespoke Django based system. In March we started work on migrating the download section in time for the release of Trusty Tahr. This was a prime opportunity to look for ways to reduce some of the load on the servers.

Choosing geolocated download mirrors is hard work for an application

When someone download Ubuntu from (on a thank-you page), they are actually sent to one of the 300 or so mirror sites that’s nearby.

To pick a mirror for the user, the application has to:

  1. Decide from the client’s IP address what country they’re in
  2. Get the list of mirrors and find the ones that are in their country
  3. Randomly pick them a mirror, while sending more people to mirrors with higher bandwidth

This process is by far the most intensive operation on the whole site, not because these tasks are particularly complicated in themselves, but because this needs to be done for each and every user – potentially 8,000 a second while every other page on the site can be aggressively cached to prevent most requests from hitting the application itself.

For the site to be able to handle this load, we’d need to load-balance requests across perhaps 40 VMs.

Can everything be done client-side?

Our first thought was to embed the entire mirror list in the thank-you page and use JavaScript in the users’ browsers to select an appropriate mirror. This would drastically reduce the load on the application, because the download page would then be effectively static and cache-able like every other page.

The only way to reliably get the user’s location client-side is with the geolocation API, which is only supported by 84% of users’ browsers. Another slight issue is that the user has to give permission before they could be assigned a mirror, which would slightly hindering their experience.

This solution would inconvenience users just a bit too much. So we found a trade-off:

A mixed solution – Apache geolocation

mod_geoip2 for Apache can apply server rules based on a user’s location and is much faster than doing geolocation at the application level. This means that we can use Apache to send users to a country-specific version of the download page (e.g. the German desktop thank-you page) by adding &country=GB to the end of the URL.

These country specific pages contain the list of mirrors for that country, and each one can now be cached, vastly reducing the load on the server. Client-side JavaScript randomly selects a mirror for the user, weighted by the bandwidth of each mirror, and kicks off their download, without the need for client-side geolocation support.

This solution was successfully implemented shortly before the release of Trusty Tahr.

Zygmunt Krynicki: Checkbox Project Insights

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 2014-08-28 17:40
Another day behind us. Another day hacking on the Checkbox Project.

Today we got a few issues on the 3.2 SRU kernel for precise. I've recorded a short explanation of how the SRU process looks like from our (Certification) perspective. We're investigating those to see if those are kernel problems or test bugs.

I've started the day by working on a few code reviews and SRU reviews. The bulk of the time was spent on the new validation subsystem for Checkbox. As before, you can see most of that via the Live Coding videos, specifically episodes #17, #18, #19 and #20) on my YouTube channel.

You can always find us, checkbox hackers in #checkbox on freenode. If you care about testing hardware with free software, join us!

Costales: Destino Ubuconla 2014 - #9 Bogotá

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 2014-08-28 16:13
Fartamos el desayuno buffet con la idea de comer ligero, porque llegamos tarde a Bogotá y así exprimir más el poco tiempo que estuvimos en la capital de Colombia.

Perdida toda la mañana con el vuelo aéreo llegamos al hotel. Jugo de recepción, una habitación casi tan grande como una casa, jacuzzi, piscina, bar... A mirar y no tocar jajaja, no vayamos a acostumbrarnos a este nivel :P (Y mañana toca hostal en Lisboa, ¡LOL!)

Poco más hicimos en Bogotá que salir a buscar unos regalos, pero la ciudad es tan grande, que tardas muchísimas horas yendo de un punto a otro.
Una pena no haber podido tener más días para conocer BogotáConseguimos estar de vuelta justo al anochecer. Y tachán, invitados a unos jugos y a cenar :O Al final va a salir barato el hotelito :P
Jugos, jugos y más jugos, ¡están impresionantes!Al no tener el ESTA americano, Avianca no nos permitió hacer el checkin online. Por tener que estar muy temprano en el aeropuerto, lo rellenamos por Internet, pero no lo pagamos (14$/persona).

El resto de la noche tocó disfrutar del lujoso hotel.

Continúa leyendo más de este viaje.

Xubuntu: inxi

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 2014-08-28 16:01

inxi is a full featured system information script that will detect information about hardware specifications, including but not limited to vendor details, CPU info, graphic and sound cards. Most importantly, it will output everything in a easy to read format and it can also be used on irc clients like irssi, weechat or xchat.

How to use inxi?

The general use of inxi is inxi -<color> -<option>. inxi output is colored and to change the color for better visibility use the c option followed by a number between 0-32.

Information type Command, usage, and more information System information inxi -b and inxi -F
The b option output basic system information, while the F option will output full system information. Hard drive details inxi -D
Outputs information on your hard drives, like make, model and size Hard drive partitions inxi -p
Outputs information about all mounted partitions, mount points and space usage Networking inxi -n and inxi -ni
Outputs information about the details of the network interfaces and configuration. When the i option is used with n, Inxi will output IP address details (for both WAN and LAN). Hardware inxi -AG and inxi -h
The A and G options output information about the audio and graphics hardware respectively. You usually want to use them together. The h option outputs you the full list of options you can use to get even more information about your hardware. Using inxi in IRC clients Client Usage Xchat, irssi and most other clients /exec -o inxi -<option> | pastebinit
The -o option shows the output to the channel. Without it, only the user will see the output. Weechat /shell -o inxi -<option> | pastebinit
Note: For weechat to run external scripts like inxi, has to be installed.

Using inxi -c0 within a IRC client environment is highly advisable because colored output doesn’t work in pastebins.

Xubuntu: Laptop users, Fix available for the black screen on unlock bug

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 2014-08-28 11:11

If you experienced problems with logging into your session after suspending your laptop by closing the lid (and only this exact scenario!), your days of worry should be over now. Many users have commented on the respective bugreport, many of whom experienced different issues with suspending. This made the issue very difficult to pinpoint in the beginning for us technical folk and confusing for users too.

Sean Davis, Technical Lead of Xubuntu, put together the pieces we collected after identifying the issue and the fix landed in the 14.04.1 and 14.10 Beta 1 releases. This means that the problem is fixed for

  • New installs of Xubuntu 14.04.1 or Xubuntu 14.10 Beta 1
  • New users created with xubuntu-default-settings 14.04.5

All those of you who have been running Trusty since its release have to toggle a setting in order to fix the issue for existing user-accounts:

  1. Open Light Locker Settings from the Settings Manager
  2. Turn “Enable Light Locker” Off. Click “Apply”.
  3. Turn “Enable Light Locker” On. Click “Apply”.

These steps have to followed manually because we never overwrite existing user settings.
Obviously, if you previously had disabled Light Locker, the last step is sufficient.

Charles Butler: Juju <3's Big Data

Planet Ubuntu - Wed, 2014-08-27 21:06

Syndicators, there is a video link above that may not make syndication. Click the source link to view the 10 minute demo video.

Over the past 4 months Amir Sanjar and I have been working dilligently on Juju's Big Data story. Working with software vendors to charm up big name products like the Demo'd Hortonworks Hadoop distribution.

To those of you that know nothing about Hadoop - Hadoop is a large scale big data framework / suite of applications. It provides facilities to build an entire ecosystem to crunch numbers from seemingly unrelated data sources, and compute through petabytes of data via Map/Reduce applications.

A traditional hadoop deployment consists of a few components:

  • Map / Reduce Engine (or cluster of engines)
  • Data Warehousing Facility
  • Distributed Filesystem to cache results across the cluster
  • Data sources (MySQL, MongoDB, HBASE, Couch, PostGRES just to name a few)

Setting up these different services and interconnecting them can be a full day process for a seasoned professional in the Big Data ecosystem. Juju offers you a quick way to distill all of that setup and interconnectivity knowledge so you can be a master at USING hadoop. Not at deploying it.

Some people say Juju negates the need to read the book, and while this may be true; I still advise you read the book at least once - so you know how it's put together, why certain configurations were chosen, and how to troubleshoot the bundle should anything go wrong. Then you're free to wield the community provided Hadoop bundle(s) like a pro.

Enjoy the Demo, and look for more Big Data tools and products on the Juju Charm Store

Matthew Helmke: Whoa! Dropbox

Planet Ubuntu - Wed, 2014-08-27 20:42

Dropbox just announced they are increasing the storage space for paid accounts ($9.99/mo) from 100GB to a full terabyte for the same price. My account has been automatically updated. I think that earns them a mention on my blog. Here is a referral link that you are free to ignore.

Costales: Destino Ubuconla 2014 - #8 Santa Marta

Planet Ubuntu - Wed, 2014-08-27 15:36
Despertamos muy temprano para recoger la tienda. Tras el desayuno contratamos unos porteadores que nos acercaran a caballo las mochilas; el precio no es caro y así se puede disfrutar sin peso la hora y pico de la ruta de vuelta que lleva a la salida.
Desde el parque hasta Santa Marta compartimos taxi junto a Emi, una inglesa y su novio escocés. El taxi nos dejó en el hostal que nos recomendó Sebastián, un chico colombiano que conocimos en el desayuno y sabía mucho de esta zona.

Pero en el hostal no tenían habitación privada a excepción de la suite, con un precio parecido al hotel de Cartagena, por lo que la contratamos. Lo cierto es que se le queda grande el nombre de suite, pero uf, estábamos cansados y sin ganas de buscar otro hotel sobre la marcha.
Escribiendo la crónica del viaje en papel
Al igual que la tienda de Tayrona, la suite olía a insecticida que tiraba p'atras :S WTF!?

Tras descansar unas horas (yo intentando matar un mosquito al que no conseguí echar el guante) nos acercamos al centro de Santa Marta. Un pueblo típico, en donde lo más reseñable es su Plaza de los Novios, la Catedral y el paseo marítimo (era de noche y no lo apreciamos bien, pero parecía tener un feo muelle de containers en un lateral).
La Catedral
Al anochecer encontramos una calle peatonal con muchos restaurantes y ahí disfrutamos cenando en plena calle.
No faltó ni la velita
Durante la cena reservamos el hotel de Bogotá para ir de a hecho en esa mega urbe. El chollo fue conseguir un 5* por 230.000 pesos.

Al volver al hostal había bastante ambiente, pero estábamos tan cansados que nos quedamos sopa. A las 0:00 paraban la música zzzzZZZZzzzz

Continúa leyendo más de este viaje.

Ubuntu Kernel Team: Kernel Team Meeting Minutes – August 26, 2014

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 2014-08-26 17:15
Meeting Minutes

IRC Log of the meeting.

Meeting minutes.


20140826 Meeting Agenda

Release Metrics and Incoming Bugs

Release metrics and incoming bug data can be reviewed at the following link:

Status: Utopic Development Kernel

The Utopic kernel remains based on the v3.16.1 upstream stable kernel
and is available for testing in the archive, ie. linux-3.16.0-11.16.
Please test and let us know your results.
Important upcoming dates:
Thurs Aug 28 – Utopic Beta 1 (~2 days)
Mon Sep 22 – Utopic Final Beta Freeze (~4 weeks away)
Thurs Sep 25 – Utopic Final Beta (~4 weeks away)
Thurs Oct 9 – Utopic Kernel Freeze (~6 weeks away)
Thurs Oct 16 – Utopic Final Freeze (~7 weeks away)
Thurs Oct 23 – Utopic 14.10 Release (~8 weeks away)

Status: CVE’s

The current CVE status can be reviewed at the following link:

Status: Stable, Security, and Bugfix Kernel Updates – Trusty/Precise/Lucid

Status for the main kernels, until today (Aug. 26):

  • Lucid – verification & testing
  • Precise – verification & testing
  • Trusty – verification & testing

    Current opened tracking bugs details:


    For SRUs, SRU report is a good source of information:



    cycle: 08-Aug through 29-Aug
    08-Aug Last day for kernel commits for this cycle
    10-Aug – 16-Aug Kernel prep week.
    17-Aug – 23-Aug Bug verification & Regression testing.
    24-Aug – 29-Aug Regression testing & Release to -updates.

    cycle: 29-Aug through 20-Sep
    29-Aug Last day for kernel commits for this cycle
    31-Sep – 06-Sep Kernel prep week.
    07-Sep – 13-Sep Bug verification & Regression testing.
    14-Sep – 20-Sep Regression testing & Release to -updates.

Open Discussion or Questions? Raise your hand to be recognized

No open discussion.

Daniel Pocock: GSoC talks at DebConf 14 today

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 2014-08-26 16:33

This year I mentored two students doing work in support of Debian and free software (as well as those I mentored for Ganglia).

Both of them are presenting details about their work at DebConf 14 today.

While Juliana's work has been widely publicised already, mainly due to the fact it is accessible to every individual DD, Andrew's work is also quite significant and creates many possibilities to advance awareness of free software.

The Java project that is not just about Java

Andrew's project is about recursively building Java dependencies from third party repositories such as the Maven Central Repository. It matches up well with the wonderful new maven-debian-helper tool in Debian and will help us to fill out /usr/share/maven-repo on every Debian system.

Firstly, this is not just about Java. On a practical level, some aspects of the project are useful for many other purposes. One of those is the aim of scanning a repository for non-free artifacts, making a Git mirror or clone containing a dfsg branch for generating repackaged upstream source and then testing to see if it still builds.

Then there is the principle of software freedom. The Maven Central repository now requires that people publish a sources JAR and license metadata with each binary artifact they upload. They do not, however, demand that the sources JAR be complete or that the binary can be built by somebody else using the published sources. The license data must be specified but it does not appeared to be verified in the same way as packages inspected by Debian's legendary FTP masters.

Thanks to the transitive dependency magic of Maven, it is quite possible that many Java applications that are officially promoted as free software can't trace the source code of every dependency or build plugin.

Many organizations are starting to become more alarmed about the risk that they are dependent upon some rogue dependency. Maybe they will be hit with a lawsuit from a vendor stating that his plugin was only free for the first 3 months. Maybe some binary dependency JAR contains a nasty trojan for harvesting data about their corporate network.

People familiar with the principles of software freedom are in the perfect position to address these concerns and Andrew's work helps us build a cleaner alternative. It obviously can't rebuild every JAR for the very reason that some of them are not really free - however, it does give the opportunity to build a heat-map of trouble spots and also create a fast track to packaging for those heirarchies of JARs that are truly free.

Making WebRTC accessible to more people

Juliana set out to update and this involved working on JSCommunicator, the HTML5/JavaScript softphone based on WebRTC.

People attending the session today or participating remotely are advised to set up your RTC / VoIP password at well in advance so the server will allow you to log in and try it during the session. It can take 30 minutes or so for the passwords to be replicated to the SIP proxy and TURN server.

Please also check my previous comments about what works and what doesn't and in particular, please be aware that Iceweasel / Firefox 24 on wheezy is not suitable unless you are on the same LAN as the person you are calling.

Zygmunt Krynicki: Live Coding Experiment

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 2014-08-26 15:55

Last week I've started doing recording videos of me, coding, live with screen sharing  and background context on everything I do. I did this to increase transparency of FOSS development as well as to increase awareness of the Checkbox project that I participate in.

I think while the actual videos are a bit too long for casual watching the experiment itself is interesting and worth pursuing.

I'm recording about 3-4 videos a day. I'll try to focus on making the content more interesting for both casual viewers that bail out after a minute or two and my hardcore colleagues that sometimes watch those to get up-to-speed about new feature development.

In any case, it is out there, in the open. If you want to talk to us, join #checkbox on freenode. Ping me on Google+. Browse the code. Improve translations or get involved in any other way you want.

Lastly, for a bit of self promotion, have a look at the latest video

Costales: Destino Ubuconla 2014 - #7 Tayrona

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 2014-08-26 13:57
Tras levantarnos nos tuvimos que apurar en recoger la habitación, porque optimistas, nos vimos bien del estómago y decidimos sobre la marcha visitar Tayrona. Reservamos el transporte a las 7 y nos recogieron en 15' en la misma puerta del hotel.

Realmente se hacen largas las 4 horas de furgoneta, pasando por pueblos pequeños en los que se ve otra Colombia alejada del turismo.

Una vez en Santa Marta nos subimos a un bus bastante cutre que en 1 hora te deja en Zeino, entrada del parque, donde comimos y conocimos a Alberto y María Gala, una pareja madrileña muy maja.
Aguantamos las 5 horas de viaje y ¿qué mejor que comer para celebrarlo? :P
Tras pagar la entrada tocó lo más duro del viaje, cargar con todo el peso de la mochilona y mochilina durante 1 hora y media, bajando y subiendo por escaleras de madera que evitan que se erosione el parque.
Se nos hizo eterno, estábamos colorados como un tomate del esfuerzo físico. Alberto y Gala echaron una mano llevando la mochila pequeña de Lu.
La ruta con la mochila se hizo eterna
Al llegar al primer camping yo estaba interesado en una cabaña, pero eran de 6 personas y muy caras para una sola pareja.

Al final acabamos en el mismo camping que Alberto y Gala. Alquilamos una tienda ya montada, pero al meter las mochilas olía a insecticida que tiraba p'atrás y como prefiero que me coman los mosquitos a morrer por insecticida, montamos nuestra propia tienda, que es muy pequeña y no tiene doble techo... y encima pero comenzaba a tronar y llover :S (se cala si llueve).
Poco más podíamos hacer al estar anocheciendo que cenar en el prestoso comedor/bar del camping junto a Alberto y Gala, hasta que a las 23:00 apagaron el generador de gasolina.

Afortunadamente amainó el temporal y no llovió de noche.
Hoy toca conocer Tayrona. Fuimos directos a la playa conocida como Piscina, con poca marea, aún así, demasiada para estar rodeada de un arrecife natural. Buceando no veíamos mucho, porque tiene la arena muy revuelta.

Llegaron Alberto y Gala y juntos fuimos hasta la cala de Cabo San Juan. Esta estuvo mucho mejor, con más marea, pero el agua más transparente, viendo con las gafas de buceo unos cuantos peces donde había rocas. Comimos unas latas de atún con pan de molde y tras el frugal almuerzo quedamos solos, porque la pareja madrileña tuvo que marchar para llegar a Cartagena hoy.

Quedamos el resto de la tarde tomando el sol y bañándonos. También intenté romper un coco tal Tom Hanks en Naufrago...
A lo Tom Hanks = Mismo resultado
Pero uf... ¡Que chungo! Acabé rompiéndolo y perdiendo todo el líquido... Mejor me pido un jugo de coco en el próximo restaurante :P

Al caer el sol ya nos habíamos acercado a nuestro camping, donde conocimos a Guillermo y Adriana, una pareja catalana muy maja, con quienes cenamos y charlamos sobre viajes. El trabaja para Everis y le gustaba Ubuntu, así que conversación garantizada :)

¿Qué decir de Tayrona? Otro paraíso más y es que Colombia parece aglutinarlos :)
Tayrona es único
Sus playas rodeadas de palmeras y coronadas de montes son clavadas a la isla de la serie de TV Lost.
La actividad consiste ir de cala en cala, descubriendo una playa cada vez más guapa y paradisíaca.
Eso sí, el mar esta muy picado, con olas que rompen con toda su fuerza. Muchas de las playas no son aptas para bañarse, pero unas pocas sí y el paisaje de roca, playa y selva es espectacular.

Continúa leyendo más de este viaje.

Lubuntu Blog: LXPanel 0.7.0 released

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 2014-08-25 23:39
A huge update to the GTK+ panel was released. See the list below for some changes. Full log of changes can be fund in git. Lots of new functionalities like:

  • new plugin ‘launchtaskbar’ combining ‘launchbar’ and ‘taskbar’
  • replaced ‘pager’ plugin with former ‘wnckpager’ one
  • allowed drag applications from system menu plugin
  • using human readable sensor names if available (like ‘Core 0′, etc)
  • renamed button to configure plugin from ‘Edit’ to ‘Properties’
  • etc.

Soon in Lubuntu repositories. More info here.

Via LXDE Blog

Nicholas Skaggs: Ubuntu Phone Translations Needed

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 2014-08-25 21:16
As we continue to iterate on new ubuntu touch images, it's important for everyone to be able to enjoy the ubuntu phone experience in their native language. This is where you can help!

We need your input and help to make sure the phone images are well localized for your native language. If you've never contributed a translation before, this is a perfect opportunity for you to learn. There's a wiki guide to help you, along with translation teams who speak your language and can help.

Don't worry, you don't need a ubuntu phone to do this work. The wiki guide details how to translate using a phone, emulator, or even just your desktop PC running ubuntu. If nothing else, you can help review other folks translations by simply using launchpad in your web browser.

If this sounds interesting to you and the links don't make sense or you would like some more personal help, feel free to contact me. English is preferred, but in the spirit of translation feel free to contact me in French, Spanish or perhaps even German :-).

Happy Translating everyone!

P.S. If you are curious about the status of your language translation, or looking for known missing strings, have a look at the stats page kept by David Planella.

Costales: Destino Ubuconla 2014 - #6 KO

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 2014-08-25 19:09
El cable del cargador del netbook hace mal contacto y desde este día no carga la batería, así que no puedo actualizar el blog. Recurro a escribirlo en papel y lo publico a la vuelva del viaje.

Tras desayunar, me acerqué solo (los demás siguen enfermos) a la Universidad Simón Bolívar en el barrio de Manga. Un bus nos llevaría durante 45' a la misma universidad que hay en el barrio Ternera.
Pero mientras esperábamos que llegasen todos los conferenciantes empezó a dolerme la tripa :S Decidí volver al hotel y perderme el 3er día de la Ubuconla :'( Nada más llegar se confirmó mi diarrea, así que todos los españoles caímos como moscas con el mismo síntoma :S

No pudimos salir en todo el día del hotel y gracias que Fernando y Marta nos acercaron suero ;) Al anochecer también aparecieron organizadores y conferenciantes preocupados de cómo estábamos ;)

Ahí se decidió que al día siguiente se saldría en lancha hasta una playa para pasar todos juntos el día, como colofón a la Ubuconla.

Al despertar, Lu sigue mal. Como habíamos quedado en el Hospital de Bocagrande para desde ahí ir a la playa, fuímos con Fernando y Marta, pero nosotros nos quedamos en dicho hospital.

Ingresaron a Lu muy rápido, en apenas 20', cuando en España las veces que fui por urgencias la media de espera fue de 7 horas.
Tras ponerle suero y medicamentos en vena tardaron mucho en darnos el alta, saliendo sobre las 15:00 (desde las 8:00) tras una factura de 165.000 pesos. El médico recetó medicamentos contra la deshidratación y control de la diarrea y desaconsejó el uso de Fortasec.

Estábamos esfamiaos, así que fuimos disparados a comer. Lu apenas comió y a mi me sentó mal lo poco que comí, volviendo a dolerme la tripa, por lo que me apunté a tomar la misma medicación que ella.

Al caer la tarde nos encontramos mejor y gastamos el resto del día paseando y conociendo el centro de Cartagena. No sé si es porque llevábamos un par de días enclaustrados en el hotel, pero el paseo prestó por la vida, recorriendo tiendas donde vendían de todo,
RedHat :)Paseando por las plazas principales pudimos ver una boda en la Catedral.
La bodaDisfrutamos un par de cafés.

El mejor café del mundo
Y tras el reconfortante paseo,
Recuperando el humor tras la convalecenciacenamos en el mismo sitio que hacía 2 días (como veis somos animales de costumbres, pero teníamos miedo a la comida de un bar típico).
Al finalizar aparecieron Fernando y Marta e hicimos una sobremesa bien prestosa.

Continúa leyendo más de este viaje.

Matthew Helmke: Linux Distro for Kids?

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 2014-08-25 13:09

Short, informal survey. Feel free to comment here or via private messages/email. I may not respond to all comments, but will read with appreciation any you make.

What is your favorite Linux distribution that is intended for use by kids, say anywhere between the ages of 8 and 18? If you have more than one, feel free to name each.

Why do you like it?

If your preference for kids is a standard distro and not one intended for that audience, which is it and why?

Lucas Nussbaum: on the Dark Ages of Free Software: a “Free Service Definition”?

Planet Ubuntu - Sun, 2014-08-24 15:39

Stefano Zacchiroli opened DebConf’14 with an insightful talk titled Debian in the Dark Ages of Free Software (slides available, video available soon).

He makes the point (quoting slide 16) that the Free Software community is winning a war that is becoming increasingly pointless: yes, users have 100% Free Software thin client at their fingertips [or are really a few steps from there]. But all their relevant computations happen elsewhere, on remote systems they do not control, in the Cloud.

That give-up on control of computing is a huge and important problem, and probably the largest challenge for everybody caring about freedom, free speech, or privacy today. Stefano rightfully points out that we must do something about it. The big question is: how can we, as a community, address it?

Towards a Free Service Definition?

I believe that we all feel a bit lost with this issue because we are trying to attack it with our current tools & weapons. However, they are largely irrelevant here: the Free Software Definition is about software, and software is even to be understood strictly in it, as software programs. Applying it to services, or to computing in general, doesn’t lead anywhere. In order to increase the general awareness about this issue, we should define more precisely what levels of control can be provided, to understand what services are not providing to users, and to make an informed decision about waiving a particular level of control when choosing to use a particular service.

Benjamin Mako Hill pointed out yesterday during the post-talk chat that services are not black or white: there aren’t impure and pure services. Instead, there’s a graduation of possible levels of control for the computing we do. The Free Software Definition lists four freedoms — how many freedoms, or types of control, should there be in a Free Service Definition, or a Controlled-Computing Definition? Again, this is not only about software: the platform on which a particular piece of software is executed has a huge impact on the available level of control: running your own instance of WordPress, or using an instance on, provides very different control (even if as Asheesh Laroia pointed out yesterday, WordPress does a pretty good job at providing export and import features to limit data lock-in).

The creation of such a definition is an iterative process. I actually just realized today that (according to Wikipedia) the very first occurrence of an attempt at a Free Software Definition was published in 1986 (GNU’s bulletin Vol 1 No.1, page 8) — I thought it happened a couple of years earlier. Are there existing attempts at defining such freedoms or levels of controls, and at benchmarking such criteria against existing services? Such criteria would not only include control over software modifications and (re)distribution, but also likely include mentions of interoperability and open standards, both to enable the user to move to a compatible service, and to avoid forcing the user to use a particular implementation of a service. A better understanding of network effects is also needed: how much and what type of service lock-in is acceptable on social networks in exchange of functionality?

I think that we should inspire from what was achieved during the last 30 years on Free Software. The tools that were produced are probably irrelevant to address this issue, but there’s a lot to learn from the way they were designed. I really look forward to the day when we will have:

  • a Free Software Definition equivalent for services
  • Debian Free Software Guidelines-like tests/checklist to evaluate services
  • an equivalent of The Cathedral and the Bazaar, explaining how one can build successful business models on top of open services

Exciting times!


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