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Free software events for November 2005

After a hectic October in the free software world, in which we witnessed events including the launch of OpenOffice.org 2.0 and MySQL 5.0, I thought November would be quieter and that I’d be struggling to find material for this article. I couldn’t have been more wrong. If anything, even more has happened this month than in the last, so I have concentrated on the events I feel most are the most important and relevant. To start with, there have been new versions in five very major software packages. These are:

  1. Mozilla Firefox version 1.5

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.

FSM staff launch www.fsdaily.com!

It's been just over a year and Free Software Magazine has become an authority in the free software world.

Myself (Tony), Dave, Gianluca, Alan and others worked countless hours to create Free Software Magazine from scratch, without involving venture capitalists or investors.

We can only be happy with the result: a quality magazine on free software that gets read by thousands of people each month.

Over time, we found that even though we could publish professionally edited feature articles, we couldn't cover news in real time. In regard to real-time news:

A free software news summary: October

It has been quite a hectic month as far as major free software releases are concerned. Three major announcements that have occurred are:

  1. Production release of OpenOffice.org 2.0
  2. Production release of MySQL 5.0
  3. Beta release of Wine 0.9

Typical advocacy and discussions have also continued as normal.

A major production—OpenOffice.org 2.0

A conversation with Bruce Snyder of the Geronimo project

Geronimo, the open source Java application server sponsored by the Apache Software Foundation, has been picking up steam lately. Hard core developers are experimenting with it as a potential replacement for proprietary application servers like IBM Websphere.

(Editor’s note: In this article, the term “open source” is used rather than “free software”. In this case, they are intended to be synonymous.)

FUDCon 3—London 2005

I woke up on Thursday 6th October on a friend’s sofa in London where I had spent the night after the Lonix evening get-together after the first day of the LinuxWorld Expo the day before. After a half hour journey recovering on a number 28 bus I arrived at 9.30 a.m. sharp(ish) in time to attend the Fedora Users and Developers Conference (FUDCon) at Olympia.

What is FUDCon?

LinuxWorld London Expo 2005

On Wednesday, October 5th, my alarm clock went off at an exceedingly uncivilized hour, whereupon I quickly donned some clothes, hurriedly grabbed some breakfast, all in order for me to race to an early train so that I might arrive at Hall 2 in Olympia, London for the 9.30 a.m. start of the 2005 LinuxWorld Expo. I arrived a few minutes early, and due to my registering for the event earlier through the internet I had a pre-printed pass in hand representing a waiver saving me the £15 registeration fee.

Why do companies outsource?

The crusty old geek with 30 years of experience can’t get a word in as Adam, the 19 year old hot-shot system administrator, tells everyone how to do their jobs. “Your opinion really doesn’t matter, dude, you’re like old”, he says, as he adjusts his Linux World t-shirt. As BrokenToothpicks.Com stock soars to $300 a share and its 24 year old high school dropout CEO lashes out against the “old way of doing things”, Adam just might be right. People start to listen to these new brainiacs and Dot Com Rockstars who can do no wrong. Adam thinks he’s God. How can he not?

Reducing the risk of risk

US bankruptcy law has hitherto been fairly liberal, allowing people to restart their lives after a financial collapse by legally eliminating debts and leaving the individual with sufficient resources to rebuild. Entrepreneurs, finding traditional business capital difficult to obtain during the critical seed phase when their ideas have not really been proven, have been willing to take that risk of personal financial failure in the name of pursuing new and risky innovative business plans—just the kind needed in a society whose status quo is not sustainable.

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aKademy 2005 review

Each summer brings a round of free software conferences, but the sunniest this year was aKademy 2005, the KDE Project’s annual summit for users, administrators and developers with ten days featuring over 60 presentations, numerous workshops and over a week of chaotic coding. Held this year in Malaga, Spain, it included a Users and Administrators Conference, a Developer Conference and a Coding Marathon.

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