FSM Newsletter 13 January 2008

FSM Newsletter 13 January 2008


Sun, 2008-01-13 11:39 -- admin

Hello everybody, and welcome once again to the fortnightly newsletter of Free Software Magazine: keeping you well informed about the realm of free software... AND the top 10 FSDaily announcements for this week! Happy reading!

General announcements

You may have thought that the FSM staff were taking a well earned break over the holiday season... think again! Tony Mobily was putting the finishing touches on Drigg, a Drupal module allowing the creation of Digg-style sites. If you want to see the module in action, FSDaily is looking very smart with it's new Drigg format!

The release of issue 21 has been delayed slightly, but will be out very soon, and we are looking forward to another successful year at FSM, and sharing it with you, the readers!

Top ten Free Software Daily stories this week

You can see the top ten Free Software Daily stories here.

Latest content

Becoming a Free Software developer, part IV : Putting your interest to good use --By Rosalyn Hunter. As we follow the zig-zaggy quest of me trying to learn to program, I discover the next significant step, “Interest”. I started with a goal: to learn to program. Next I came up with a plan: Learn Python by writing a program called PT (period tracker) but I lacked the last bit, interest. Read more...

NetBeans 6.0 is out: why should developers use it? --By Amit Kumar Saha. The free software age is all about giving the freedom to choose: flexibility to choose the best out of a variety of almost-the-best software is one of the hallmarks of this era. On the flip side, a newbie to this world often faces a choice overload. Read more...

How to edit your GRUB settings with QGRUBEditor --By Andrew Min. Anyone who runs more than one operating system has had to deal with GNU GRUB (the GRand Unified Bootloader). Grub is the tool that allows you to pick which operating system to book when you turn your computer on. Read more...

Return of the bespoke database --By Ryan Cartwright. I’ve mentioned before the recent move among UK charities to become more “professional”, which is often translated as “do what the corporates do” (particularly when it comes to IT). One reason for this is the dreaded bespoke friend-of-a-friend database. These “databases” (and I use the term loosely) are often written by a student, with tenuous links to the charity, looking for a final year project and usually in Microsoft Access and they are usually awful to maintain. Read more...

Wengo giving up on Wengophone? --Lately I’ve been working on an updated version of the comparison between Skype and Wengophone I wrote on June 2006 for Free Software Magazine. While I was working on it, I spotted a number of rather worrying signs: Read more...

How to make Jabber calls using Jabbin --By Andrew Min. Jabber is the only mainstream free (as in speech) instant messaging protocol. Unfortunately, most Jabber clients for GNU/Linux only provide options for messaging and group chats, overlooking the audio chatting portion of Jabber (powered by the Google-funded libjingle). Enter Jabbin, the free Qt-based Jabber VoIP client. Read more...

Another week with Windows Vista --By Steven Goodwin. Many moons ago I tried using Windows for a week to see how the other half live. Despite my thorough openness and fairness, I still got criticized! (Well, it wouldn’t be the free software community if people didn’t, I suppose!) Read more...

Microsoft's half-hearted support for old office formats --By Mitch Meyran. Are you still using Microsoft Office 2003? If so, get ready to have problems opening older file formats with it once SP3 is applied: Microsoft has decided to disable file parsers for the older file types (Word 95 and older, Wordperfect, Lotus etc.) by default. Why? Security reasons. Read more...

Latest book reviews released

**Pro Tomcat 6 by Matthew Moodie** The Apache Tomcat server is the most well known and deployed Servlet container for dynamic Java based web applications. Pro Apache Tomcat 6 by Matthhew Moodie (edited by Kunal Mittal and published by Apress) explains in exacting, systematic and well covered detail how to manage the latest version of this high quality, popular free software product. Reviewed by Alan Berg. Read more...

**Learning PHP Data Objects by Dennis Poppel** Learning PHP Data Objects by Dennis Popel (Packt Publishing, 2007) introduces the PHP5 extension PDO. If you’ve ever worked on a LAMP server, you must know how tedious it is to go through the results of an SQL query, and to manage the connection—even worse, if you happen to change database, your work is pretty much lost: PostgreSQL, MySQL and SQLite don’t have the same driver nor functions! Not so with PDO. Reviewed by Mitch Meyran. Read more...

Reminders

You can read this and previous newsletters online here

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