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Kubuntu Wire: Forthcoming Kubuntu Interviews

Mon, 10/20/2014 - 04:36

Kubuntu 14.10 is due out this week brining a choice of rock solid Plasma 4 or the tech preview of Kubuntu Plasma 5.  The team has a couple of interviews lined up to talk about this.

At 21:00UTC tomorrow (Tuesday) Valorie will be talking with Jupiter Broadcasting’s Linux Unplugged about what’s new and what’s cool.
Watch it live 21:00UTC Tuesday or watch it recorded.

Then on Thursday just fresh from 14.10 being released into the wild me and Scarlett will be on the AtRandom video podcast starting at 20:30UTC.Watch it live 20:30UTC Thursday or watch it recorded.

And feel free to send in questions to either if there is anything you want to know.

 

Ronnie Tucker: Amazon Web Services Aims for More Open Source Involvement

Mon, 10/20/2014 - 00:58

In 2006, Amazon was an E-commerce site building out its own IT infrastructure in order to sell more books. Now, AWS and EC2 are well-known acronyms to system administrators and developers across the globe looking to the public cloud to build and deploy web-scale applications. But how exactly did a book seller become a large cloud vendor?

Amazon’s web services business was devised in order to cut data center costs – a feat accomplished largely through the use of Linux and open source software, said Chris Schlaeger, director of kernel and operating systems at Amazon Web Services in his keynote talk at LinuxCon and CloudOpen Europe today in Dusseldorf.

Founder Jeff Bezos “quickly realized that in order to be successful in the online business, he needed a sophisticated IT infrastructure,” Schlaeger said. But that required expensive proprietary infrastructure with enough capacity to handle peak holiday demand. Meanwhile, most of the time the machines were idle. By building their infrastructure with open source software and charging other sellers to use their unused infrastructure, Amazon could cover the up front cost of data center development.

Source:

http://www.linux.com/news/featured-blogs/200-libby-clark/791472-amazon-web-services-aims-for-more-open-source-involvement

Submitted by: Libby Clark

Valorie Zimmerman: Start your Season of KDE engines!

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 23:28
Season of KDE (#SoK2014) was delayed a bit, but we're in business now:

http://heenamahour.blogspot.in/2014/10/season-of-kde-2014.html

Please stop by the ideas page if you need an idea. Otherwise, contact a KDE devel you've worked with before, and propose a project idea.

Once you have something, please head over to the Season of KDE website: https://season.kde.org and jump in. You can begin work as soon as you have a mentor sign off on your plan.

Student application deadline: Oct 31 2014, 12:00 am UTC - so spread the word! #SoK2014

Go go go!

Ronnie Tucker: Pushbullet + FCM = WIN!

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 10:45

If you’d like to know the very second FCM is out, and on all of your devices then install Pushbullet and subscribe to the Full Circle Magazine channel: https://www.pushbullet.com/channel?tag=fcm

I’m not sure if I can push a 15MB PDF through Pushbullet, but I’ll give it a first try when FCM#90 is out (31st).

There’s also a Pushbullet subscribe button on the site.

Randall Ross: Ubuntu Contributors' Guide

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 09:38

I spent a few minutes this morning writing the comprehensive Ubuntu Contributors' Guide.

Here it is in all its glory:

Yes, that's really all there is to it. It's simple.

As obvious as this seems, there are people (names withheld) that will want you to believe otherwise. I'll elaborate in a future post.

When you encounter them, please forward a copy of this flow chart. Tell them Randall sent you.

Ronnie Tucker: VirtualBox 4.3.18 Has Been Released With Lots Of Fixes

Sat, 10/18/2014 - 23:57

Virtualbox 4.3.18 has been released and bringing many different fixes for major operating systems such as Ubuntu Linux, Windows and Mac OS X. The potential misbehavior after restoring the A20 state from a saved state has been fixed, virtualbox does not crash anymore in linux hosts with old versions of the linux kernel, a few remaining warnings in the kernel log if memory allocation fails have been fixed and the GNOME Shell on Fedora 21 is not prevented anymore from starting when  handling video driver display properties.

Thanks to this maintenance release Ubuntu users have now the possibility to use legacy full-screen mode under Unity without experiencing multi-screen issues. Another important issue related to Unity that has been fixed with the release of 4.3.18 version is the quirk  in full-screen mode Unity panels caused by mini-toolbar code changes in last release.

Source:

http://www.unixmen.com/virtualbox-4-3-18-released-lots-fixes/

Submitted by: Oltjano Terpollari

Benjamin Mako Hill: Another Round of Community Data Science Workshops in Seattle

Sat, 10/18/2014 - 18:19
Pictures from the CDSW sessions in Spring 2014

I am helping coordinate three and a half day-long workshops in November for anyone interested in learning how to use programming and data science tools to ask and answer questions about online communities like Wikipedia, free and open source software, Twitter, civic media, etc. This will be a new and improved version of the workshops run successfully earlier this year.

The workshops are for people with no previous programming experience and will be free of charge and open to anyone.

Our goal is that, after the three workshops, participants will be able to use data to produce numbers, hypothesis tests, tables, and graphical visualizations to answer questions like:

  • Are new contributors to an article in Wikipedia sticking around longer or contributing more than people who joined last year?
  • Who are the most active or influential users of a particular Twitter hashtag?
  • Are people who participated in a Wikipedia outreach event staying involved? How do they compare to people that joined the project outside of the event?

If you are interested in participating, fill out our registration form here before October 30th. We were heavily oversubscribed last time so registering may help.

If you already know how to program in Python, it would be really awesome if you would volunteer as a mentor! Being a mentor will involve working with participants and talking them through the challenges they encounter in programming. No special preparation is required. If you’re interested, send me an email.

Costales: Folder Color y el poder de la comunidad

Sat, 10/18/2014 - 07:12
Como programador, alguna que otra vez me sucedió algo tan especial como ayer...

Un usuario de Folder Color me envió un email solicitando que los iconos dependan del tema, más particularmente del set de iconos Numix.

Algo que a priori creía que no era factible técnicamente (o al menos sin remapear manualmente muchísimos iconos) se resolvió gracias a la comunidad. El usuario me remitió a su pregunta al upstream y ahí la inestimable ayuda de Joshua Fogg de Numix me permitió aprender cómo funcionan los temas en Ubuntu y tras unas horas de desarrollo y pruebas, ¡voalá! Nueva versión, más funcional y bonita que nunca :D ¡Gracias compañeros!

Y así, en este mundillo linuxero: proyecto x proyecto = proyecto3
Sí, al cubo ;) no me equivoqué.

Lydia Pintscher: One thing that would make KDE better

Sat, 10/18/2014 - 05:14

I went to Akademy with two notebooks and a plan. They should both be filled by KDE contributors with writing and sketching about one thing they think would make KDE better. Have a look at the result:

The complete set is in this Flickr album. Check it out! What’s your favorite? What’s your one thing – big or small – that would make KDE better?

(Thanks to Fabrice for the idea.)

Rhonda D'Vine: Trans Gender Moves

Sat, 10/18/2014 - 03:14

Yesterday I managed to get the last ticket from the waitinglist for the premiere of Trans Gender Moves. It is a play about the lives of three people: A transman, a transwoman and an intersexual person. They tell stories from their life, their process of finding their own identity over time. With in parts amusing anecdotes and ones that gets you thinking I can just wholeheartly encourage you to watch it if you have the chance to. It will still be shown the next few days, potentially extending depending on the requests for tickets, from what I've been told by one of the actors.

The most funny moment for me though was when I was talking with one of the actors about that it really touched me that I was told that one of them will be moving into into the same building I will be moving into in two year's time. Unfortunately that will be delayed a bit because they found me thinks field hamster or the likes in the ground and have to wait until spring for them to move. :/

/personal | permanent link | Comments: 0 |

Costales: Folder Color is themable now

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 23:20
Folder Color has a new improvement: It's themable now! :)

If your custom theme has the "folder-color" icons (read how to create those icons), you'll see them! By example, this is a screenshot with the awesome Numix icons (WIP yet):


Numix icon set

You can watch it in action in this video.


How to install: Here.

I want to thank you to Joshua Fogg from the Numix Proyect for his help & knowledge!! Really thank you ;)

Enjoy it! :)

Ronnie Tucker: KDE Plasma 5 Now Available for Ubuntu 14.10 (Utopic Unicorn)

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 21:56

The new KDE Plasma and KDE Frameworks packages are now out of Beta and users can test them in various systems, including Ubuntu. In fact, installing the latest KDE is quite easy now because there is a PPA available.

A lot of users are anxious to use the latest Plasma desktop because it’s quite different from the old one. We can call it “the old one” even if the latest branch, 4.14.x, is still maintained until November.

The KDE developers split the project into three major components: Plasma, Frameworks, and Applications. Plasma is actually the desktop and everything that goes with it, Frameworks is made up of all the libraries and other components, and Applications gathers all the regular apps that are usually KDE-specific.

Source:

http://news.softpedia.com/news/KDE-Plasma-5-Now-Available-for-Ubuntu-14-10-Utopic-Unicorn–462042.shtml

Submitted by: Silviu Stahie

Sam Hewitt: Turkey Soup with Fluffy Dumplings

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 11:00

It was Turkey Day (more commonly called Thanksgiving) this weekend past in Canada which always means there's an abundance of food and leftovers. As such, I feel there's no better use of your turkey carcass and extra meat than making turkey soup.

Part 1. The Soup
    Ingredients
  • 1 leftover turkey carcass –the body, with most of the meat removed, plus any leftover limbs of the bird, if still available.
  • 1 onion, cut into large chunks
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 kg of cooked turkey meat (or whatever you have left), any skin removed & shredded
  • 2 large carrots, cut into even chunks
  • 1 clove garlic, minces
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • salt & pepper
  • dumplings, recipe follows.
    Directions
  1. Put the turkey corpse & chopped onion into a pot and cover with stock and water. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for at least an hour (up to a few hours).
  2. Drain the resulting broth into a large bowl through a large colander to remove the bones & such.
  3. Pour the broth back into the pot through a mesh strainer, to remove the smaller bits from it.
  4. Add the chopped carrot & garlic along with the dried thyme & marjoram and season with salt & pepper, to your taste.
  5. Bring soup to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until the carrot are soft (which may be up to an hour).
  6. Finish soup with dumplings before serving.
Part 2. Fluffy Dumplings
    Ingredients
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or other vegetable oil
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped green onion and/or parsley (optional)
    Directions
  1. Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl plus the chopped herbs, if using.
  2. Add the milk & oil and bring it all together into a sticky mass.
  3. Dump out the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead for a few minutes.
  4. Divide the dough in half and roll into long ~1 inch diameter "logs".
  5. Cut the dough logs into to evenly-sized dumplings.
  6. To eat, add to a pot of hot, simmering broth or soup and let cook for at least 15 minutes.

I favour dumplings as the starch element in a soup like this, but you are free to opt them out and use rice, noodles or even chunks of potato.

Martin Pitt: Ramblings from LinuxCon/Plumbers 2014

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 09:54

I’m on my way home from Düsseldorf where I attended the LinuxCon Europe and Linux Plumber conferences. I was quite surprised how huge LinuxCon was, there were about 1.500 people there! Certainly much more than last year in New Orleans.

Containers (in both LXC and docker flavors) are the Big Thing everybody talks about and works with these days; there was hardly a presentation where these weren’t mentioned at all, and (what felt like) half of the presentations were either how to improve these, or how to use these technologies to solve problems. For example, some people/companies really take LXC to the max and try to do everything in them including tasks which in the past you had only considered full VMs for, like untrusted third-party tenants. For example there was an interesting talk how to secure networking for containers, and pretty much everyone uses docker or LXC now to deploy workloads, run CI tests. There are projects like “fleet” which manage systemd jobs across an entire cluster of containers (distributed task scheduler) or like project-builder.org which auto-build packages from each commit of projects.

Another common topic is the trend towards building/shipping complete (r/o) system images, atomic updates and all that goodness. The central thing here was certainly “Stateless systems, factory reset, and golden images” which analyzed the common requirements and proposed how to implement this with various package systems and scenarios. In my opinion this is certainly the way to go, as our current solution on Ubuntu Touch (i. e. Ubuntu’s system-image) is far too limited and static yet, it doesn’t extend to desktops/servers/cloud workloads at all. It’s also a lot of work to implement this properly, so it’s certainly understandable that we took that shortcut for prototyping and the relatively limited Touch phone environment.

On Plumbers my main occupations were mostly the highly interesting LXC track to see what’s coming in the container world, and the systemd hackfest. On the latter I was again mostly listening (after all, I’m still learning most of the internals there..) and was able to work on some cleanups and improvements like getting rid of some of Debian’s patches and properly run the test suite. It was also great to sync up again with David Zeuthen about the future of udisks and some particular proposed new features. Looks like I’m the de-facto maintainer now, so I’ll need to spend some time soon to review/include/clean up some much requested little features and some fixes.

All in all a great week to meet some fellows of the FOSS world a gain, getting to know a lot of new interesting people and projects, and re-learning to drink beer in the evening (I hardly drink any at home :-P).

If you are interested you can also see my raw notes, but beware that there are mostly just scribbling.

Now, off to next week’s Canonical meeting in Washington, DC!

Harald Sitter: Plasma 5 Weekly ISO Revisited

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 06:38

I am proud to announce that Plasma 5 weekly ISOs have returned today.

http://files.kde.org/snapshots/unstable-i386-latest.iso.mirrorlist

Grab today’s ISO while it is hot. And don’t forget to report the bugs you might notice.

Plasma 5 weekly ISOs bring you the latest and greatest Plasma right from the tip of development.

As some of you might have noticed the previous Plasma 5 weekly ISOs stopped updating a while ago. This was because we at Blue Systems were migrating to new system for distribution level integration. More on this to follow soon. Until then you’ll have to believe me that it is 300% more awesome :)

Lucas Nussbaum: Debian Package of the Day revival (quite)

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 06:05

TL;DR: static version of http://debaday.debian.net/, as it was when it was shut down in 2009, available!

A long time ago, between 2006 and 2009, there was a blog called Debian Package of the Day. About once per week, it featured an article about one of the gems available in the Debian archive: one of those many great packages that you had never heard about.

At some point in November 2009, after 181 articles, the blog was hacked and never brought up again. Last week I retrieved the old database, generated a static version, and put it online with the help of DSA. It is now available again at http://debaday.debian.net/. Some of the articles are clearly outdated, but many of them are about packages that are still available in Debian, and still very relevant today.

Rhonda D'Vine: New Irssi

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 05:39

After a long time a new irssi upstream release hit the archive. While the most notable change in 0.8.16 was DNSSEC DANE support which is enabled (for linux, src:dnsval has issues to get compiled on kFreeBSD), the most visible change in 0.8.17 was addition of support for both 256 colors and truecolor. While the former can be used directly, for the later you have to explicitly switch the setting colors_ansi_24bit to on. A terminal support it is needed for that though. To test the 256 color support, your terminal has to support it, your TERM environment variable has to be properly set, and you can test it with the newly added /cubes alias. If you have an existing configuration, look at the Testing new Irssi wiki page which helps you get that alias amongst giving other useful tipps, too.

The package currently only lives in unstable, but once it did flow over to testing I will update it in wheezy-backports, too.

Enjoy!

/debian | permanent link | Comments: 0 |

Jussi Kekkonen: Notes about Dell XPS 13 developer edition and Kubuntu

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 01:14

Got new tool, Dell XPS 13 developer edition, running Ubuntu 12.04. Here’s some experiences using it and also a note for future self what needed to be done to make everything work.

After taking restore disc from the pre-installed Ubuntu using the tool Dell provided, I proceeded on clean installing Kubuntu 14.04. I have to say for the size and price of this piece of hardware is rather amazing, only nitpicking could be the RAM capability being capped to 8 GiB. Having modern Linux distribution running smoothly in any circumstances is simply nice experience. I haven’t hit yet for the limitations of the integrated Intel GPU either, which is surprising, or maybe it is just telling my way of using these things. (:

Touch screen is maybe the most interesting bit on this laptop. Unfortunately I have to say the use of it is limited by UI not working well with touch interaction in many cases. Maybe choosing apps differently I would get better experience. At least some websites are working just fine when using Chromium browser.

Note on hardware support

Everything else works like a charm out of the box in Kubuntu 14.04, except cooling. After some searching I found out some Dell laptops need separate tools for managing the cooling. I figured out the following:

I needed to install i8kutils, which can be found in Ubuntu repositories.

Then I made the following contents to /etc/i8kmon.conf

# Run as daemon, override with --daemon option set config(daemon) 0 # Automatic fan control, override with --auto option set config(auto) 1 # Report status on stdout, override with --verbose option set config(verbose) 1 # Status check timeout (seconds), override with --timeout option set config(timeout) 12 # Temperature thresholds: {fan_speeds low_ac high_ac low_batt high_batt} set config(0) {{-1 0} -1 48 -1 48} set config(1) {{-1 1} 45 60 45 60} set config(2) {{-1 2} 50 128 50 128} # end of file

Note that some options are overridden in the init script, for example it does set i8kmon to daemon mode. Timeout of 12 seconds is there because I noticed every time fan speed is set, the speed begins to fall down in ~10 seconds so that in half a minute point you notice clearly the accumulated change on the fan speed. My 12 seconds is just compromise I found working for me well, YMWV etc.

Also to have i8kmon control cooling without human interaction, I needed to enable it in /etc/default/i8kmon

ENABLED=1

That’s it for now, I might end up updating the post if something new comes up regarding hardware support.

Ronnie Tucker: Canonical Details Plans for Unity 8 Integration in Ubuntu Desktop

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 22:55

Ubuntu users now know for certain when Unity 8 officially arrives on the desktop flavor of the distribution.

The Ubuntu desktop flavor hasn’t been the developers’ focus for some time now, but that is going to change very soon. The new Desktop Team Manager at Canonical, Will Cooke, has talked about the future of the Unity desktop and laid out the plans for the next few Ubuntu versions.

Users might have noticed that Ubuntu developers have been putting much of their efforts into the mobile version of their operating system and the desktop has received less attention than usual. They had to focus on that version because most of the things that are changed and improved for Ubuntu Touch will eventually land on the desktop as well.

Not all users know that the desktop environment that is now on Ubuntu Touch will also power the desktop version in the future, and that future is not very far ahead. In fact, it’s a lot closer than users imagine.

Source:

http://news.softpedia.com/news/Canonical-Details-Plans-for-Unity-8-Integration-in-Ubuntu-Desktop-462117.shtml

Submitted by: Silviu Stahie

Joe Liau: Documenting the Death of the Dumb Telephone – Part 2: Balderdash

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 20:57

Source

Sometimes we need text so that we can document history, such as the death of our beloved smart phones. But, our phones are not smart; smart things do not fill themselves with nonsense. For some reason, the number of chatting, texting, mailing, talking channels is constantly increasing, which is also increasing the amount of “garbage information” that is entering our brains. Sometimes there is so much that I have to cut off myself off from the channels. Maybe my phone shouldn’t have a text function at all! It needs to be saved.

In a future post, I will discuss how we might mitigate this by adjusting our habits, but considering that all of these messages contain text, my smart phone should be able to consolidate, cross-reference, reply in-line, or find a way reduce the number of channels and the number of taps required to explain something.

A smart phone does not walk itself into traffic because it needs to reply to so many messages. Poor phones.

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