Interview with Patrick Luby

Patrick Luby wrote the software layer which allows OpenOffice to run on Macintosh computers without running an X server. This way, OpenOffice also looks like a native application. Since OpenOffice is one of the most relevant free software projects out there, the importance of his work cannot be underestimated. Patrick agreed on answering a few questions for Free Software Magazine.

TM: Patrick, first of all: please tell us a little bit about yourself. What do you do? What’s your programming background?

Free the Xbox 360!

Well, here’s the latest violation of DMCA Anti-Circumvention that’s sure to get an cheer from the boys and girls fighting the good fight: Free60 is struggling to port GNU/Linux and Darwin to the Xbox 360. This is quite a challenge because Microsoft has really pulled out all the stops to keep this box safe from prying, er, owners (I suppose Microsoft doesn’t use that word to describe people who pay $400 for the box). Here’s a glimpse at what the team has found so far.

Win a copy of “Moving to Linux”

Mon, 2005-11-28 09:54 -- admin

This week we are giving away a copy of Moving to Linux_ by Marcel Gagne_.

All you need to do to enter is:

1) read our terms and conditions

2) Answer this question:

What ad is on page 23 of the full colour, high res version of issue 9 of FSM?

3) Send your subscriber name (the email address you use to login), full name and your answer to .

Entries open on the 28th of November 2005 and close on the 2nd of December 2005.

Issue 9 is out!

Mon, 2005-11-28 07:07 -- admin

Free Software Magazine is proud to announce the release of another fantastic issue.

In Issue 9 of Free Software Magazine Saqib Ali gives the public a lesson in Private Key management and David Horton shows us ways to attract volunteers for free software projects. John Locke also gives us an intro to RSS news feeds, and much, much more.


And... spread the word about Free Software Magazine. Digg this story!

Where is fsdaily?

Sun, 2005-11-27 09:59 -- admin

You may have noticed that is redirected to


The answer is simple: at the moment, we don't have the resources to run it.

On one hand, I am talking about hardware resources: we spent quite a while configuring the site using Slash (which is great for creating communities). However, Slash itself used a lot of CPU and RAM—and we simply couldn't afford it.

Book review: Producing Open Source Software by Karl Fogel

Many people who start an open source project just announce their project without any prior planning. But now Karl Fogel—who has worked on the development teams of CVS, GNU Emacs and, most recently, Subversion, and is also the writer of “Open Source Development with CVS”—has introduced an extremely comprehensive project guide that will change the way people begin and think about open source projects.

The book’s coverThe book’s cover

Book review: Moving to Linux by Marcel Gagne

Moving to Linux, written by Marcel Gagne and published by Addison-Wesley, serves as a practical guide that takes the reader on a step-by-step journey into the world of GNU/Linux. This book is not for the hardcore techie, but for the person who wants to see how the common tasks they now perform in Windows can be done better with GNU/Linux.

The book’s coverThe book’s cover

A practical guide that takes the reader on a step-by-step journey into the world of GNU/Linux

The contents

Free Software Magazine now pays for articles—sort of!

Thu, 2005-11-24 00:27 -- admin

Apress, O'Reilly, Addison-Wesley/Prentice Hall, No Starch Press sponsor Free Software Magazine by donating books to FSM to pay contributors with.

The title says it all: four major publishers put their money where their mouth is, and have agreed to sponsor Free Software Magazine.

Their commitment is to donate one book (max $100) for each article that gets published in Free Software Magazine (excluding book reviews and articles less than 1000 words in length).

Where's the Xbox 180?—getting kids involved in free software

I’m sure I’ll be running across a flood of news today about Microsoft’s new Xbox 360. Of course, like everyone else I know who is into games, I’m curious about this new box (and Sony’s eventual response). I’m also wondering about issues like copy prevention measures and how difficult these systems will be to “mod” to circumvent them.

Open standards for new Microsoft Office

Here’s some interesting news. Microsoft is reportedly opening up the file formats of its new suite, promising folks that they won’t be locked into a proprietary file format. The move reminds me strongly of Adobe’s decisions with its .PDF format. Their openness helped make PDF files almost ubiquitous. What I’m wondering is whether open MS Office formats will affect the adoption rate of OO.

Hosting service and free software

Check out any web hosting service and they will probably be providing a number of different applications and technologies, most likely based on Free and Open Source Software (FOSS).

The most common of these technologies employed in this way are the components of the LAMP stack. LAMP stands for Linux, Apache, MySQL and the all-encompassing Perl, PHP and Python.

Win a copy of “Producing Open Source Software”

Tue, 2005-11-22 08:28 -- admin

This week we are giving away a copy of Producing Open Source Software_ by Karl Fogel_.

All you need to do to enter is:

1) read our terms and conditions

2) Click on the OpenHosting link in the latest newsletter

3) Complete the following sentence:

“OpenHosting is a next-generation hosting provider. It is aiming to c----- t-- w-- h------ e--------- a- w- k--- i-.”

4) Send your subscriber name (the email address you use to login), full name and the completed sentence to

Music in free software

As a member of two a cappella vocal ensembles, I have been searching for several free software projects to fit some of my musical needs.

The first need is a way to print out scores of vocal music. My director often re-arranges pieces, especially old hymns, and trying to read the hand-written manuscript and sight-read is very difficult. Additionally, after copies are made into copies of copies, the quality of the page decreases dramatically. I would like a soft-copy of the vocal music for reprinting at any time, and for long-term storage.

What is code?

_The two of us wrote this article together. Since each of us was several, there was already quite a crowd. We have made use of everything that came within range, what was closest as well as farthest away. We have been aided, inspired multiplied [1]. _

JP: Code is described as many things: it is a cultural logic, a machinic operation or a process that is unfolding. It is becoming, today’s hegemonic metaphor; inspiring quasi-semiotic investigations within cultural and artistic practice (e.g. The Matrix). No-one leaves before it has set its mark on them...


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