FSM Newsletter 25 February 2008

FSM Newsletter 25 February 2008


Sun, 2008-02-24 05:54 -- admin

Hello readers, and welcome once again to [Free Software Magazine] (http://www.freesoftwaremagazine.com/)'s fortnightly newsletter, keeping you up to date with all things free software... AND the top 10 FSDaily announcements for this week! Enjoy!

General announcements

Top ten Free Software Daily stories this week

  1. You can now add FSDaily news feeds to your sites! --You can now add FSDaily news feeds to your website or homepage. The block will show the latest news from one of our great feeds. Read more...

  2. Switching Office Suites from Microsoft Office to OpenOffice.org --How to set up OpenOffice.org to work how you want it with templates and clip art, configurations, shortcuts, and more. I’m here to help. Think of this as a virtual guide to help you figure out things you’re not quite sure about. Read more...

  3. Adobe Pushes DRM for Flash --"...Now Adobe, which controls Flash and Flash Video, is trying to change that with the introduction of DRM restrictions in version 9 of its Flash Player and version 3 of its Flash Media Server software. Instead of an ordinary web download, these programs can use a proprietary, secret Adobe protocol to talk to each other, encrypting the communication and locking out non-Adobe software players and video tools..." Read more...

  4. OOXML: What's the big deal? --The OOXML specification has been both criticized and defended by a number of people, leading many to wonder what the big deal is. This article illustrates the basis of technical, rather than political, objections to treating OOXML as a standard. Read more...

  5. The Definitive Guide to Bash Command Line History --" Let me teach you how to work efficiently with command line history in bash. This tutorial comes with a downloadable cheat sheet that summarizes (and expands on) topics covered here (scroll to the end for a download link). In case you are a first time reader, this is the 3rd part of the article series on working efficiently in bourne again shell. Previously I have written on how to work efficiently in vi and emacs command editing modes by using predefined keyboard shortcuts (both articles come with cheat sheets of predefined shortcuts)..." Read more...

  6. The £99 laptop: how can it be so cheap? --A new laptop computer for just £99 sounds like the kind of offer found in a spam e-mail or on a dodgy auction website. But the British company Elonex is launching the country’s first sub £100 computer later this month and hopes to be making 200,000 of them by the summer. It will be aimed at schoolchildren and teenagers, and looks set to throw the market for budget laptops wide open. Read more...

  7. Explore the Universe from your Desktop with Celestia --While it may not let you go where no man has gone before, Celestia is an amazing desktop application that lets you go anywhere in the known Universe.You can view any object in the Solar System, travel to distant stars, and even leave the Galaxy, traveling faster than the speed of light, viewing high-res images of objects millions of miles away. Read more...

  8. Impossible thing #2: Comprehensive free knowledge repositories like Wikipedia and Project Gutenberg --Project Gutenberg, started in 1971, is the oldest part of the modern free culture movement. Wikipedia is a relative upstart, riding on the wave of success of free software, extending the idea to other kinds of information content. Today, Project Gutenberg, with over 24,000 e-texts, is probably larger than the legendary Library of Alexandria. Read more...

  9. Why Linux Doesn't Spread - the Curse of Being Free --Linux isn't very popular on the desktop. It's a far third behind OS X, which is a very far second behind Windows. Most people cite pre-installed operating systems as the reason. But as a student of psychology, I see something most people don't. There's one big factor in why Linux isn't popular on the desktop. Linux is free. I know this sounds like complete dog's bollocks, but hear me out before judging my sanity. Read more...

  10. Google behind Photoshop's new Linux compatibility --Google recently confirmed in a blog posting that it had paid Codeweavers to help develop WINE to make Photoshop usable on the well-regarded but still somewhat unpredictable software package, which aims to replicate Windows libraries to enable popular Windows applications run in a Linux environment. Read more...

Thanks to dave, Rubuntu, can.axis, peacemaker, extra, nemilar, tony, serdar, and bridget for these stories!

Latest content

Sharing without Microsoft Exchange --By Ryan Cartwright. Microsoft Exchange is the name most organisations go for when thinking of sharing calendars, e-mail etc. However, there are free software alternatives—and of course you don’t have to go for the obvious or popular option. Read more...

Free software Easter eggs --By Alan Berg. It is grey a dull, overcast day here in downtown Amsterdam. The weather is rather oppressive, summer’s smile long gone and my wine cellar miraculously has grown to quiet emptiness. However, I know a not too-well guarded secret. Hidden in the cracks, just at the edge of your eyesight, is extra humorous functionality in your favourite free software applications. Silent professional Easter eggs are waiting stealthily to make you smile. Read more...

Impossible thing #2: Comprehensive free knowledge repositories like Wikipedia and Project Gutenberg --By Terry Hancock. Project Gutenberg, started in 1971, is the oldest part of the modern free culture movement. Wikipedia is a relative upstart, riding on the wave of success of free software, extending the idea to other kinds of information content. Today, Project Gutenberg, with over 24,000 e-texts, is probably larger than the legendary Library of Alexandria. Wikipedia is the largest and most comprehensive encyclopedic work ever created in the history of mankind. It’s common to draw comparisons to Encyclopedia Britannica, but they are hardly comparable works—Wikipedia is dozens of times larger and covers many more subjects. Accuracy is a more debatable topic, but studies have suggested that Wikipedia is not as much less accurate than Britannica as one might naively suppose. Read more...

All the C you need to know for GTK+ --By Andrew Krause. If you want to develop applications with GTK+, a graphical toolkit used by the GNOME desktop environment, it is essential that you are comfortable with the C programming language. This article is meant to give you a short refresher on the basics of C that you will need to know when developing GTK+ applications. Read more...

gedit: a powerful, underrated text editor for everybody --By Andrew Min. Most computer users spend their entire life looking for the Holy Grail. In other words, they spend all their life searching for the perfect editor that supports all their languages, is free as in speech, has spelling, has highlighting… you get the picture. Obviously, there isn’t a perfect editor out there. However, some come pretty close. Ironically, one of them is one that any Ubuntu (or in fact, any Gnome) user has installed, though they may not know it. It’s called gedit (also known as Text Editor). Read more...

Pimp your desktop: automate desktop wallpaper with Webilder --By Gary Richmond. They say that you never get a second chance to make a first impression, and if you want to make a good impression with computer lovers with artistic pretensions, a fancy wallpaper is a pretty good place to start. It can be a real ice breaker. Why stop there? Why spend fruitless hours dredging through the art galleries of cyberspace to retrieve a few hard-won digital morsels to decorate your miserable desktop? Just automate the tedious process with Webilder and free up some valuable time to hone your other more valuable Unix skills. Webilder won’t make you rich, improve your productivity or make you irresistibly attractive to the opposite sex (much) but it’s clever, fun and cool. What more reason do you need to use it? Enough already with the slick sales talk. Let’s pimp that desktop! Read more...

Group interview: a graphic view of the open hardware movement. Part 1: motivations --By Terry Hancock. Excitement in the Open Graphics community is quite high as it approaches its first production run of the FPGA-based “Open Graphics Development” board, known as “OGD1”. It will be available for pre-sale this month with the first units expected to ship soon thereafter. The board is targeted at hardware developers, with the specific goal of supporting development and testing of designs for a fully-documented consumer Open Hardware Graphics Card to be implemented using an ASIC (thus resolving one of the biggest obstacles to free software on the desktop). Read more...

Can we please stop fighting FUD with FUD? --By Ryan Cartwright. It has long been the case that proprietary software companies regularly engage in FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt) tactics against their opponents. This particularly seems to apply to Microsoft’s statements about free software in general and GNU/Linux in particular. Recently I’ve noticed a surge in the amount of FUD going the other way—from the FOSS community towards Microsoft and other proprietary software companies. Why do we feel it is necessary to fight FUD with FUD? Read more...

Reminders

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