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Interview with Charles of the Ubuntu Community Council

The Fridge - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 18:26

The Ubuntu Community Council is the primary community (i.e., non-technical) governance body for the Ubuntu project. In this series of 7 interviews, we go behind the scenes with the community members who were elected in 2013 serve on this council with Mark Shuttleworth.

In this, our first interview, we talk with Charles about his experience with Ubuntu and beyond.

Tell us a little about yourself

I am currently an IT professional at a K-12 school dI am an IT professional for a K-12 school district responsible for running the server infrastructure, disaster recovery, information security, and virtualization. I introduced Linux and Open Source to the district. I started playing around with Linux in 1993, but did not start using it regularly until 2006. At first I was the typical distro hopper, but I soon found the Ubuntu Community and realized that I had found a home. The Ubuntu Community was full of knowledgeable friendly and helpful people.

How long have you been involved with Ubuntu? And how long on the Ubuntu Community Council?

I have been active with Ubuntu since 2008 when I got involved with the New York State Ubuntu LoCo Community. I have been involved with the Ubuntu Forums, Ubuntu Beginners Team, IRC OPs, Ubuntu Bug Squad, Ubuntu Documentation, Ubuntu New York, Ubuntu Education, and Ubuntu News. I served on the Ubuntu Beginners team Council, The Ubuntu LoCo Council and am currently on The Ubuntu Community Council.

What are some of the projects you’ve worked on in Ubuntu over the years?

Laptop Testing Team, Ubuntu IRC operators, Ubuntu Educators, Ubuntu Leadership (development of leadership), Ubuntu Screencast, Ubuntu New York, Ubuntu Power users, Ubuntu Bug Control, Ubuntu Bugsquad, Ubuntu Accomplishments, Ubuntu Documentation Team, Ubuntu Documentation Team Wiki Administrators, and Ubuntu Accessibility

What is your focus in Ubuntu today?

My focus in Ubuntu today is on the community, both local and global.

Do you contribute to other free/open source projects? Which ones?

I want to use the word contribute carefully as I do not have any code contributions outside of the Ubuntu community. I have contributed in terms of support, testing and community with openVAS, Cacti, Racktables, Security Onion, Kali and nmap.

If you were to give a newcomer some advice about getting involved with Ubuntu, what would it be?

Enjoy using Ubuntu and share your success with others. When you want to contribute to Ubuntu find an area you are passionate about and seek out any assistance you need to grow in that area.

Jo Shields: mono-project.com Linux packages, January 2015 edition

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 18:26

The latest version of Mono has released (actually, it happened a week ago, but it took me a while to get all sorts of exciting new features bug-checked and shipshape).

Stable packages

This release covers Mono 3.12, and MonoDevelop 5.7. These are built for all the same targets as last time, with a few caveats (MonoDevelop does not include F# or ASP.NET MVC 4 support). ARM packages will be added in a few weeks’ time, when I get the new ARM build farm working at Xamarin’s Boston office.

Ahead-of-time support

This probably seems silly since upstream Mono has included it for years, but Mono on Debian has never shipped with AOT’d mscorlib.dll or mcs.exe, for awkward package-management reasons. Mono 3.12 fixes this, and will AOT these assemblies – optimized for your computer – on installation. If you can suggest any other assemblies to add to the list, we now support a simple manifest structure so any assembly can be arbitrarily AOT’d on installation.

Goodbye Mozroots!

I am very pleased to announce that as of this release, Mono users on Linux no longer need to run “mozroots” to get SSL working. A new command, “cert-sync”, has been added to this release, which synchronizes the Mono SSL certificate store against your OS certificate store – and this tool has been integrated into the packaging system for all mono-project.com packages, so it is automatically used. Just make sure the ca-certificates-mono package is installed on Debian/Ubuntu (it’s always bundled on RPM-based) to take advantage! It should be installed on fresh installs by default. If you want to invoke the tool manually (e.g. you installed via make install, not packages) use

cert-sync /path/to/ca-bundle.crt

On Debian systems, that’s

cert-sync /etc/ssl/certs/ca-certificates.crt

and on Red Hat derivatives it’s

cert-sync /etc/pki/tls/certs/ca-bundle.crt

Your distribution might use a different path, if it’s not derived from one of those.

Windows installer back from the dead

Thanks to help from Alex Koeplinger, I’ve brought the Windows installer back from the dead. The last release on the website was for 3.2.3 (it’s actually not this version at all – it’s complicated…), so now the Windows installer has parity with the Linux and OSX versions. The Windows installer (should!) bundles everything the Mac version does – F#, PCL facades, IronWhatever, etc, along with Boehm and SGen builds of the Mono runtime done with Visual Studio 2013.

An EXPERIMENTAL OH MY GOD DON’T USE THIS IN PRODUCTION 64-bit installer is in the works, when I have the time to try and make a 64-build of Gtk#.

Dimitri John Ledkov: Python 3 ports of launchpadlib & ubuntu-dev-tools (library) are available

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 17:06
I'm happy to announce that Python 3 ports of launchpadlib & ubuntu-dev-tools (library) are available for consumption.

These are 1.10.3 & 0.155 respectfully.

This means that everyone should start porting their reports, tools, and scriptage to python3.

ubuntu-dev-tools has the library portion ported to python3, as I did not dare to switch individual scripts to python3 without thorough interactive testing. Please help out porting those and/or file bug reports against the python3 port. Feel free to subscribe me to the bug reports on launchpad.

For the time being, I believe some things will not be easy to port to python3 because of the elephant in the room - bzrlib. For some things like lp-shell, it should be easy to move away from bzrlib, as non-vcs things are used there. For other things the current suggestion is to probably fork to bzr binary or a python2 process. I ponder if a minimal usable python3-bzrlib wrapper around python2 bzrlib is possible to satisfy the needs of basic and common scripts.

On a side note, launchpadlib & lazr.restfulclient have out of the box proxy support enabled. This makes things like add-apt-repository work behind networks with such setup. I think a few people will be happy about that.

All of these goodies are available in Ubuntu 15.04 (Vivid Vervet) or Debian Experimental (and/or NEW queue).

Ubuntu Server blog: Server team meeting minutes: 2015-1-20

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 13:36
Agenda
  • Review ACTION points from previous meeting
    • gaughen to establish new qa-team point of contact for server team
  • V Development
  • Server & Cloud Bugs (caribou)
  • Weekly Updates & Questions for the QA Team (psivaa)
  • Weekly Updates & Questions for the Kernel Team (smb, sforshee, arges)
  • Ubuntu Server Team Events
  • Open Discussion
  • Announce next meeting date, time and chair
Minutes Meeting Actions
  • gaughen to establish new qa-team point of contact for server team — gaughen and beisner discussing – keeping as ACTION point

  • jamespage to answer question in bug 1410363 in response to smb

V Development

Today is Jan 20th.  Jan 22nd is alpha 2 (For opt-in flavors).  Feb 19th is feature freeze and debian import freeze.

Server & Cloud Bugs caribou is busy on a CUPS bug & apport upstream issues Ubuntu Server Team Events

FOSDEM is soon (Saturday 31 January and Sunday 1 February 2015) and hallyn is presenting lxd at FOSDEM on Sunday.

Open Discussion

teward says nginx merge coming as soon as the next debian updates come for it (assuming before featurefreeze). last merge introduced out of the box POODLE mitigations in the default confs.

Agree on next meeting date and time

Next meeting will be on Tuesday, Jan 27th at 16:00 UTC in #ubuntu-meeting. jamespage will chair.

IRC Log https://wiki.ubuntu.com/MeetingLogs/Server/20150120

Carla Sella

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 12:54

Aggregated scopes



So here we are with some more news on the new bq Ubuntu phone that's going to be launched on the 6th of February, this time it's about aggregated scopes, read the e-mail I received as Ubuntu insider:



Hi Insiders,

In our initial Phone Glimpse mail we'd introduced scopes for the Ubuntu phone - an integrated approach to delivering content and services. We touched on aggregated scopes that are default scopes valuable to end users. In this mailer we'll be showcasing the default scopes available that provide a full spectrum of rich content categories.

The Today scope let's you see your most important interactions on one screen. Personalise it to see what's most important to you, right at your fingertips.

To see local information, events and services from wherever you are located, check out the NearBy scope. Imagine you're in Barcelona yet don't know where to eat, the NearBy scope will provide you with hidden gems from various sources. A few app partners include: TimeOut, Yelp and The Weather Channel.

The all important News scope aggregates news feeds from your chosen providers that includes the BBC, EuroNews and Engadget.

Bringing music to you. The Music scope allows you to see music on your phone and the web within one place, be it your music library, streaming content from Soundcloud or Grooveshark, and maybe tracks purchased from 7Digital.

There's also the Video scope with app partners that include YouTube, TED and Vimeo, as well as the Photo scope that brings your Facebook, Instagram and Flickr feed into one place.

Every source in the aggregated scopes can expand to give you an app-like experience for that source - and by starring it, they can even become another default screen. That's a great way to personalize your Ubuntu phone so it truly revolves around the services you use most.

There's also a scope dedicated to traditional apps where you can see your downloaded apps in one place.

Voila! A content rich experience brought to you which we can't wait to showcase for real at the Insider event. As mentioned in earlier mails this information is yours to use in anyway!

Looking forward to sharing more insights with you.Best,The Ubuntu Phone Team#ubuntuphone

Daniel Pocock: Quantifying the performance of the Microserver

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 12:53

In my earlier blog about choosing a storage controller, I mentioned that the Microserver's on-board AMD SB820M SATA controller doesn't quite let the SSDs perform at their best.

Just how bad is it?

I did run some tests with the fio benchmarking utility.

Lets have a look at those random writes, they simulate the workload of synchronous NFS write operations:

rand-write: (groupid=3, jobs=1): err= 0: pid=1979 write: io=1024.0MB, bw=22621KB/s, iops=5655 , runt= 46355msec

Now compare it to the HP Z800 on my desk, it has the Crucial CT512MX100SSD1 on a built-in LSI SAS 1068E controller:

rand-write: (groupid=3, jobs=1): err= 0: pid=21103 write: io=1024.0MB, bw=81002KB/s, iops=20250 , runt= 12945msec

and then there is the Thinkpad with OCZ-NOCTI mSATA SSD:

rand-write: (groupid=3, jobs=1): err= 0: pid=30185 write: io=1024.0MB, bw=106088KB/s, iops=26522 , runt= 9884msec

That's right, the HP workstation is four times faster than the Microserver, but the Thinkpad whips both of them.

I don't know how much I can expect of the PCI bus in the Microserver but I suspect that any storage controller will help me get some gain here.

Riccardo Padovani: Ubuntu Phone Glimpse: Aggregated Scopes

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 12:15

Next Feb, 6th there will be a Canonical event in London, where firsts Ubuntu Phones will be presented to the public. I’m one of the lucky guys will join the event and will have the opportunity to have one of this little treasures - so next month I’ll do a lot of posts about it :-)

Meanwhile, Ubuntu Phone Teams is writing to the participants of the event some details about the phone and the system. It isn’t anything secret, but these mails give some good informations on the phone. I think information wants to be free, so I share them with the world.

In our initial Phone Glimpse mail we’d introduced scopes for the Ubuntu phone - an integrated approach to delivering content and services. We touched on aggregated scopes that are default scopes valuable to end users. In this mailer we’ll be showcasing the default scopes available that provide a full spectrum of rich content categories.

The Today scope let’s you see your most important interactions on one screen. Personalise it to see what’s most important to you, right at your fingertips.

To see local information, events and services from wherever you are located, check out the NearBy scope. Imagine you’re in Barcelona yet don’t know where to eat, the NearBy scope will provide you with hidden gems from various sources. A few app partners include: TimeOut, Yelp and The Weather Channel.

The all important News scope aggregates news feeds from your chosen providers that includes the BBC, EuroNews and Engadget.

Bringing music to you. The Music scope allows you to see music on your phone and the web within one place, be it your music library, streaming content from Soundcloud or Grooveshark, and maybe tracks purchased from 7Digital.

There’s also the Video scope with app partners that include YouTube, TED and Vimeo, as well as the Photo scope that brings your Facebook, Instagram and Flickr feed into one place.

Every source in the aggregated scopes can expand to give you an app-like experience for that source - and by starring it, they can even become another default screen. That’s a great way to personalize your Ubuntu phone so it truly revolves around the services you use most.

There’s also a scope dedicated to traditional apps where you can see your downloaded apps in one place.

Voila! A content rich experience brought to you which we can’t wait to showcase for real at the Insider event. As mentioned in earlier mails this information is yours to use in anyway!

Looking forward to sharing more insights with you.

Best, The Ubuntu Phone Team

Victor Tuson Palau: uBrick – a Lego Scope

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 10:49

Just a quick note to tell you that I have published a new scope called uBrick that brings you the awesomeness of Lego, as a catalogue powered by brickset.com, directly to your Ubuntu phone home screen.

I wrote the scope in Go cause I find it easier to work with for a quick scope ( took about 8 hours with interruptions over 2 days to write this scope).  The scope is now available at the store, just search for uBrick.

Here are some pics:

 

Also I have to congratulate the folks at Brickset for a very nice API, even if it is using SOAP :)


Dustin Kirkland: Snappy Ubuntu for Devices -- The Year of the Linux Countertop!

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 10:24

Forget about The Year of the Linux Desktop...This is The Year of the Linux Countertop!

I'm talking about Linux on every form of Internet-connected embedded devices.  The Internet-of-Things is already upon us.  Sensors, smart watches, TVs, thermostats, security cameras, drones, printers, routers, switches, robots -- you name it.  
And with that backdrop, we are thrilled to introduce Snappy Ubuntu for Devices.  Ubuntu is now a possibility, on almost any device, anywhere.  Now that's exciting!
This is the same Snappy Ubuntu, with its atomic, transactional updates that we launched on each major public cloud last month -- extended and updated for 64-bit Intel, AMD and ARM devices.
You can check out the official landing page for a comprehensive list of already-enabled devices and services, including: Ninjablocks, openHAB, Open Source Robotics Foundation, Robot Operating System, Erle Robotics, Odroid, Beagleboard, Udoo, Parallella, PCDuino, Banana Pro, Allwinner, DeviceHive, IoTSys, RIOT, Resin.io, Kaa, Nwave, Siralab, OpenSensors.io, Weave, 2lemetry.
Now, if you want a detailed, developer's look at building a Snappy Ubuntu image and running it on a BeagleBone, you're in luck!  I shot this little instructional video (using Cheese, GTK-RecordMyDesktop, and OpenShot).  Enjoy!

A transcript of the video follows...


  1. What is Snappy Ubuntu?
    • A few weeks ago, we introduced a new flavor of Ubuntu that we call “Snappy” -- an atomically, transactionally updated Operating System -- and showed how to launch, update, rollback, and install apps in cloud instances of Snappy Ubuntu in Amazon EC2, Microsoft Azure, and Google Compute Engine public clouds.
    • And now we’re showing how that same Snappy Ubuntu experience is the perfect operating system for today’s Cambrian Explosion of smart devices that some people are calling “the Internet of Things”!
    • Snappy Ubuntu Core bundles only the essentials of a modern, appstore powered Linux OS stack and hence leaves room both in size as well as flexibility to build, maintain and monetize very own device solution without having to care about the overhead of inventing and maintaining your own OS and tools from scratch. Snappy Ubuntu Core comes right in time for you to put your very own stake into stake into still unconquered worlds of things
    • We think you’ll love Snappy on your smart devices for many of the same reasons that there are already millions of Ubuntu machine instances in hundreds of public and private clouds, as well as the millions of your own Ubuntu desktops, tablets, and phones!
  2. Unboxing the BeagleBone
    • Our target hardware for this Snappy Ubuntu demo is the BeagleBone Black -- an inexpensive, open platform for hardware and software developers.
    • I paid $55 for the board, and $8 for a USB to TTL Serial Cable
    • The board is about the size of a credit card, has a 1GHz ARM Cortex A8 processor, 512MB RAM, and on board ethernet.
    • While Snappy Ubuntu will run on most any armhf or amd64 hardware (including the Intel NUC), the BeagleBone is perhaps the most developer friendly solution.
  3. The easiest way to get your Snappy Ubuntu running on your Beaglebone
    • The world of Devices has so many opportunities that it won’t be possible to give everyone the perfect vertical stack centrally. Hence Canonical is trying to enable all of you and provide you with the elements that get you started doing your innovation as quickly as possible. Since there will be many devices that won’t need a screen and input devices, we have developed “webdm”. webdm gives you the ability to manage your snappy device and consume apps without any development effort.
    • To installl you simply download our prebuilt WEB .img and dd it to your sd card.
    • After that all you ahve to do is to connect your beaglebone to a DHCP enabled local network and power it on.
    • After 1-2 minutes you go to http://webdm.local:8080 and can get onto installing apps from the snappy appstore without any further effort
    • Of course, we are still in beta and will continue give you more features and a greater experience over time; we will not only make the UI better, but also work on various customization options that allow you to deliver your own app store powered product without investing your development resources in something that already got solved.
  4. Downloading Snappy and writing to an sdcard
    • Now we’re going to build a Snappy Ubuntu image to run on our device.
    • Soon, we’ll publish a library of Snappy Ubuntu images for many popular devices, but for this demo, we’re going to roll our own using the tool, ubuntu-device-flash.
    • ls -halF mysnappy.img
    • sudo dd if=mysnappy.img of=/dev/mmblk0 bs=1M oflag=dsync
  5. Hooking up the BeagleBone
    • Insert the microsd card
    • Network cable
    • USB debug
    • Power/USB
  6. Booting Snappy and command line experience
    • Okay, so we’re ready for our first boot of Snappy!
    • Let’s attach to the USB/serial console using screen
    • Now, I’ll attach the power, and if you watch very carefully, you might get to see some a few boot messages.
    • snappy help
    • ifconfig
    • ssh ubuntu@10.0.0.105
  7. WebDM experience
    • snappy info
    • Shows we have the webdm framework installed
    • point browser to http://10.0.0.105:8080
    • Configuration
    • Store
  8. Conclusion
    • Hey how cool is that!  Snappy Ubuntu running on devices :-)
    • I’ve spent plenty of time and money geeking out over my Nest and Dropcam and Netatmo and WeMo lightswitches, playing with their APIs and hooking them up to If-This-Then-That.
    • But I’m really excited about a world where those types of devices are as accessible to me as my Ubuntu servers and desktops!
    • And from what I’ve shown you here, with THIS, I think we can safely say that that we’ve blown right past the year of the Linux desktop.
    • This is the year of the Linux countertop!

Cheers,Dustin

Ubuntu Kernel Team: Kernel Team Meeting Minutes – January 20, 2015

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 10:11
Meeting Minutes

IRC Log of the meeting.

Meeting minutes.

Agenda

20150120 Meeting Agenda


Release Metrics and Incoming Bugs

Release metrics and incoming bug data can be reviewed at the following link:

  • http://people.canonical.com/~kernel/reports/kt-meeting.txt


Status: Vivid Development Kernel

Our Vivid kernel remains based on the v3.18.2 upstream stable kernel,
but we’ll be rebasing to v3.18.3 shortly. We’ll also be rebsaing our
unstable branch to v3.19-rc5 and get that uploaded to our team PPA soon.
—–
Important upcoming dates:
Thurs Jan 22 – Vivid Alpha 2 (~2 days! away)
Thurs Feb 5 – 14.04.2 Point Release (~2 weeks away)
Thurs Feb 26 – Beta 1 Freeze (~5 weeks away)


Status: CVE’s

The current CVE status can be reviewed at the following link:

http://people.canonical.com/~kernel/cve/pkg/ALL-linux.html


Status: Stable, Security, and Bugfix Kernel Updates – Utopic/Trusty/Precise/Lucid

Status for the main kernels, until today:

  • Lucid – Verification & Testing
  • Precise – Verification & Testing
  • Trusty – Verification & Testing
  • Utopic – Verification & Testing

    Current opened tracking bugs details:

  • http://kernel.ubuntu.com/sru/kernel-sru-workflow.html

    For SRUs, SRU report is a good source of information:

  • http://kernel.ubuntu.com/sru/sru-report.html

    Schedule:

    cycle: 09-Jan through 31-Jan
    ====================================================================
    09-Jan Last day for kernel commits for this cycle
    11-Jan – 17-Jan Kernel prep week.
    18-Jan – 31-Jan Bug verification; Regression testing; Release


Open Discussion or Questions? Raise your hand to be recognized

No open discussion.

Ubuntu LoCo Team Global Jam Packs

The Fridge - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 09:57

For a long time now Canonical has provided Ubuntu LoCo Teams with material to use in the promotion of Ubuntu. This has come in the form of CDs and DVDs for Ubuntu releases, as well as conference packs for booths and shows.

We’ve also been sent several packages, when requested by an Ubuntu Member, to LoCo Teams for their own events, such as release parties or global jams.

This cycle we are extending this offer to any LoCo team that is hosting an in-person Global Jam event. It doesn’t matter how many people are going, or what you’re planning on doing for your jam. The Jam Packs will include DVDs, stickers, pens and other giveaways for your attendees, as well as an Ubuntu t-shirt for the organizers (or as a giveaway, if you choose).

Since there is only a few weeks before Global Jam weekend, and these will be shipped from London, please take your country’s customs process into consideration before ordering. Countries in North America and Europe shouldn’t have a problem, but if you’ve experienced long customs delays in the past please consider waiting and making your request for the next Global Jam.

To get an Ubuntu Global Jam Pack for your event, all you need to do is the following:

  • Register you Global Jam event on the LoCo Team Portal
    • Your event must be in-person, and have a venue associated with it
  • Fill out the community donation request form
    • Include a link to your LoCo Team Portal event in your request
  • Promote your event, before and after
    • Blog about it, post pictures, and share your excitement on social media
      • Use the #ubuntu hashtag when available

You can find all kinds of resources, activities and advice for running your Global Jam event on the Ubuntu Wiki, where we’ve collected the cumulative knowledge from all across the community over many years. And you can get live help and advice any time on the #ubuntu-locoteams IRC channel on Freenode.

Originally posted here by Michael Hall

James Page: Call for Testing: Ubuntu OpenStack Kilo-1 development milestone

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 09:33

The Ubuntu Server Team is pleased to announce the general availability of the first development milestone of the OpenStack Kilo release in Ubuntu 15.04 development and for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS via the Ubuntu Cloud Archive.

Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

For now, you can enable the Ubuntu Cloud Archive for OpenStack Kilo on Ubuntu 14.04 installations by running the following commands:

echo "deb http://ubuntu-cloud.archive.canonical.com/ubuntu trusty-updates/kilo main" \ | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/cloud-archive.list sudo apt-get -y install ubuntu-cloud-keyring sudo apt-get update

The Ubuntu Cloud Archive for Kilo includes updates for Nova, Glance, Keystone, Neutron, Cinder, Horizon, Swift, Ceilometer and Heat; Ceph (0.87), RabbitMQ (3.4.2), QEMU (2.1), libvirt (1.2.8) and Open vSwitch (2.3.1) back-ports from 15.04 development have also been provided.

Ubuntu 15.04 development

No extra steps required; just start installing OpenStack!  Keystone is still pending update due to review of new dependencies by the Ubuntu MIR team, but that should happen in the next few weeks.

New OpenStack components

This cycle we’ve also provided packages for Trove, Sahara and Ironic – these projects are part of the integrated OpenStack release but remain in Ubuntu universe for this development cycle, which means they won’t get point release updates or security updates as part of ongoing stable release maintenance once Ubuntu 15.04 and the Kilo Cloud Archive for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS release.

NOTE: that if you use the Neutron FWaaS driver, you will need to install the ‘python-neutron-fwaas’ package to continue using this functionality; we will improve this situation in the packaging prior to final release.

Reporting bugs

Let’s face it, as the first development milestone there are bound to be a few bugs so please use the ‘ubuntu-bug’ tool to report any bugs that you find – for example:

sudo ubuntu-bug nova-conductor

this will ensure that bugs get logged in the right place in Launchpad.

Thanks and have fun!


Martin Pitt: Snappy package for Robot Operating System tutorial

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 07:21
ROS what?

Robot Operating System (ROS) is a set of libraries, services, protocols, conventions, and tools to write robot software. It’s about five years old now, free software, and a growing community, bringing Linux into the interesting field of robotics. They primarily target/support running on Ubuntu (current Indigo ROS release runs on 14.04 LTS on x86), but they also have some other experimental platforms like Ubuntu ARM and OS X.

ROS, meet Snappy

It appears that their use cases match Ubuntu Snappy’s vision really well: ROS apps usually target single-function devices which require absolutely robust deployments and upgrades, and while they of course require a solid operating system core they mostly implement their own build system and libraries, so they don’t make too many assumptions about the underlying OS layer.

So I went ahead and created a snapp package for the Turtle ROS tutorial, which automates all the setup and building. As this is a relatively complex and big project, it helped to uncover quite a number of bugs, of which the most important ones got fixed now. So while the building of the snap still has quite a number of workarounds, installing and running the snap is now reasonably clean.

Enough talk, how can I get it?

If you are interested in ROS, you can look at bzr branch lp:~snappy-dev/snappy-hub/ros-tutorials. This contains documentation and a script build.sh which builds the snapp package in a clean Ubuntu Vivid environment. I recommend a schroot for this so that you can simply do e. g.

$ schroot -c vivid ./build.sh

This will produce a /tmp/ros/ros-tutorial_0.2_<arch>.snap package. You can download a built amd64 snapp if you don’t want to build it yourself.

Installing and running

Then you can install this on your Snappy QEMU image or other installation and run the tutorial (again, see README.md for details):

yourhost$ ssh -o UserKnownHostsFile=/dev/null -p 8022 -R 6010:/tmp/.X11-unix/X0 ubuntu@localhost snappy$ scp <yourhostuser>@10.0.2.2:/tmp/ros/ros-tutorial_0.2_amd64.snap snappy$ sudo snappy install ros-tutorial_0.2_amd64.snap

You need to adjust <yourhostuser> accordingly; if you didn’t build yourself but downloaded the image, you might also need to adjust the host path where you put the .snap.

Finally, run it:

snappy$ ros-tutorial.rossnap roscore & snappy$ DISPLAY=localhost:10.0 ros-tutorial.rossnap rosrun turtlesim turtlesim_node & snappy$ ros-tutorial.rossnap rosrun turtlesim turtle_teleop_key

You might prefer ssh’ing in three times and running the commands in separate shells. Only turtlesim_node needs $DISPLAY (and is quite an exception — an usual robotics app of course wouldn’t!). Also, note that this requires ssh from at least Ubuntu 14.10 – if you are on 14.04 LTS, see README.md.

Enjoy!

Mark Shuttleworth: Smart things powered by snappy Ubuntu Core on ARM and x86

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 07:00

“Smart, connected things” are redefining our home, work and play, with brilliant innovation built on standard processors that have shrunk in power and price to the point where it makes sense to turn almost every “thing” into a smart thing. I’m inspired by the inventors and innovators who are creating incredible machines – from robots that might clean or move things around the house, to drones that follow us at play, to smarter homes which use energy more efficiently or more insightful security systems. Prooving the power of open source to unleash innovation, most of this stuff runs on Linux - but it’s a hugely fragmented and insecure kind of Linux. Every device has custom “firmware” that lumps together the OS and drivers and devices-specific software, and that firmware is almost never updated. So let’s fix that!

Ubuntu is right at the heart of the “internet thing” revolution, and so we are in a good position to raise the bar for security and consistency across the whole ecosystem. Ubuntu is already pervasive on devices – you’ve probably seen lots of “Ubuntu in the wild” stories, from self-driving cars to space programs and robots and the occasional airport display. I’m excited that we can help underpin the next wave of innovation while also thoughtful about the responsibility that entails. So today we’re launching snappy Ubuntu Core on a wide range of boards, chips and chipsets, because the snappy system and Ubuntu Core are perfect for distributed, connected devices that need security updates for the OS and applications but also need to be completely reliable and self-healing. Snappy is much better than package dependencies for robust, distributed devices.

Transactional updates. App store. A huge range of hardware. Branding for device manufacturers.

In this release of Ubuntu Core we’ve added a hardware abstraction layer where platform-specific kernels live. We’re working commercially with the major silicon providers to guarantee free updates to every device built on their chips and boards. We’ve added a web device manager (“webdm”) that handles first-boot and app store access through the web consistently on every device. And we’ve preserved perfect compatibility with the snappy images of Ubuntu Core available on every major cloud today. So you can start your kickstarter project with a VM on your favourite cloud and pick your processor when you’re ready to finalise the device.

If you are an inventor or a developer of apps that might run on devices, then Ubuntu Core is for you. We’re launching it with a wide range of partners on a huge range of devices. From the pervasive Beaglebone Black to the $35 Odroid-C1 (1Ghz processor, 1 GB RAM), all the way up to the biggest Xeon servers, snappy Ubuntu Core gives you a crisp, ultra-reliable base platform, with all the goodness of Ubuntu at your fingertips and total control over the way you deliver your app to your users and devices. With an app store (well, a “snapp” store) built in and access to the amazing work of thousands of communities collaborating on Github and other forums, with code for robotics and autopilots and a million other things instantly accessible, I can’t wait to see what people build.

I for one welcome the ability to install AI on my next camera-toting drone, and am glad to be able to do it in a way that will get patched automatically with fixes for future heartbleeds!

Sam Hewitt: Something for the Linux-curious

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 07:00

Yesterday, I had the idea for a site that distilled for new comers and the "Linux-curious" what was available to them if they were wondering about switching.

A site that had a curated selection of distributions, and presented them in a well-designed and meaningful manner that would be friendly to Linux novices.

That doesn't involve lengthy questionnaires or quizzes and doesn't give literally every imaginable option ever and is something that is buried in some subpage of some other site.

The site would essentially target people that are newer to Linux rather than us power/advanced users of Linux who are already aware of all/many the existing options. For instance, there would be no mention of any system-level stuff or technical names for things.

Since no such site, exists (to my knowledge) I made it myself: Compute Freely

Michael Hall: Ubuntu LoCo Team Global Jam Packs

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 03:00

For a long time now Canonical has provided Ubuntu LoCo Teams with material to use in the promotion of Ubuntu. This has come in the form of CDs and DVDs for Ubuntu releases, as well as conference packs for booths and shows.

We’ve also been sent several packages, when requested by an Ubuntu Member, to LoCo Teams for their own events, such as release parties or global jams.

This cycle we are extending this offer to any LoCo team that is hosting an in-person Global Jam event. It doesn’t matter how many people are going, or what you’re planning on doing for your jam. The Jam Packs will include DVDs, stickers, pens and other giveaways for your attendees, as well as an Ubuntu t-shirt for the organizers (or as a giveaway, if you choose).

Since there is only a few weeks before Global Jam weekend, and these will be shipped from London, please take your country’s customs process into consideration before ordering. Countries in North America and Europe shouldn’t have a problem, but if you’ve experienced long customs delays in the past please consider waiting and making your request for the next Global Jam.

To get an Ubuntu Global Jam Pack for your event, all you need to do is the following:

  • Register you Global Jam event on the LoCo Team Portal
    • Your event must be in-person, and have a venue associated with it
  • Fill out the community donation request form
    • Include a link to your LoCo Team Portal event in your request
  • Promote your event, before and after
    • Blog about it, post pictures, and share your excitement on social media
      • Use the #ubuntu hashtag when available

You can find all kinds of resources, activities and advice for running your Global Jam event on the Ubuntu Wiki, where we’ve collected the cumulative knowledge from all across the community over many years. And you can get live help and advice any time on the #ubuntu-locoteams IRC channel on Freenode.

Ronnie Tucker: Would you trust Facebook for your work?

Planet Ubuntu - Tue, 01/20/2015 - 00:03

With over a billion users, Facebook isn’t hurting for potential customers, but a few months ago Facebook started to explore the idea of Facebook at Work. It’s exactly what it sounds like: A version of Facebook for your office. The question is: After banning Facebook from your office network, would you use Facebook for Work in your office?

On January 14, Facebook took its first big step in turning this into a product from an in-house idea. The company is releasing Facebook at Work beta apps for iOS and on Android via the Google Play Store. But, even if you think this is the best idea since sliced bread, don’t rush out to get the apps. They will only be available for a select few beta testers.

Facebook for Work will also make much more use of one feature that’s not often used by most Facebook users: Facebook Groups. This functionality, which enables you to form your own group to share anything from family reunion plans to how you’ll launch your next widget release, has long been in Facebook.

 

Source: http://www.zdnet.com/article/would-you-trust-facebook-for-your-work/

Submitted by: Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols

Ali Jawad: One Stop Banner says it all

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 01/19/2015 - 18:38

Hi,

First of all, I’m not a graphics designer and not even close. However, I always like to play with Inkscape.

I thought to create a banner for my social media channels (Twitter, Google+ and Facebook) that says is all when it comes to my projects and current involvements.

I’m a huge fan of One Stop Shop concept.

So, I came up with this:

Why? because I’m:

  1. The founder of Kibo business (profit) project.
  2. The founder of ToriOS.
  3. The founder of StartUbuntu Project.
  4. The community manager of Ubuntu GNOME.
  5. One of the masters of Linux Padawan.
  6. Member of GNOME.
  7. Member of Ubuntu.

 

When I look at these logos all together at the same place, these motivate me and inspire me to go and do much more beyond the extra miles I usually go to.

I have come across this quote last night:

And, what an amazing inspirational and motivational quote.

You know what is the best part of all that? it is when you stand before the entire world who keep telling you DO NOT do that and you insist to stick to your dream and make it true. Giving up is not an option.

In 2010, I was a newcomer to GNU/Linux when I started to use Ubuntu 10.04 and did my best to find my way through. I have never ever thought I would be in such position where I am right now.

It is always a great chance to thank each and everyone who stood with me and never let me down. They were always there for me, whenever I need them and they are always there even before I ask for help/support. You do know yourself so wherever you are, THANK YOU SO MUCH!

It is also worth mentioning that I have enjoyed every bit of learning new stuff, daily. It is amazing how we could learn a lot on different areas .. and we shall keep learning and learning until the last minute of our lives.

Spread humanity, peace, love, hope and positivity. That is a holy message I live by, daily.

Thank you!

Ubuntu LoCo Council: January 2015 Meeting Canceled

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 01/19/2015 - 17:27

The regular meeting of LoCo Council scheduled for January 20th is canceled due to a lack of business to act upon. The next regular meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, 16 February 2015 at 20:00 UTC. Please make sure to add items to the agenda available on wiki.ubuntu.com. Issues and other concerns to be dealt with before the next meeting should be addressed to the Council via e-mail at loco-council@lists.ubuntu.com.

Xubuntu: Help the Community with testing and win Xubuntu stickers

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 01/19/2015 - 17:07

Manual testing of the development version is an important part of the development cycle. The goal of manual testing is to find bugs that have been introduced during the cycle.

Finding these gives developers the opportunity to fix issues before the release. The sooner they are found, the bigger the possibility is that the bugs are fixed before regular users see them on their desktop. Without manual testers, our releases would be buggy. All that being said, we need your help doing manual testing.

Unfortunately, manual testing can often be a tedious and thankless job for the contributors who are doing the testing and bug reporting for the community. This cycle we’re hoping to change that up a bit.

We will be giving out 7 Xubuntu Sticker Bundles from now through April to selected top testers on the following schedule:

Timespan Admissible test reports February Test reports from start of cycle to 28th February Beta 1 Tests reported during the milestone March Test reports from 1st March to 31st March Final Beta Tests reported during the milestone April Test reports from 1st April to 23rd April (end of the cycle) Final Release Tests reported during milestone Cycle Tests reported during the whole Vivid Vervet cycle

Depending on the success of this initiative we’ll look into adding Xubuntu t-shirts and Ubuntu books to the program during the LTS cycle leading up to April 2016.

How can I participate?

To help us out with testing and be considered as a sticker bundle recipient, do the following:

  1. Follow the Xubuntu-devel and/or Xubuntu-users mailing lists for calls at milestones when specific image testing is required.
  2. Report all of your tests to the image tracker, for you to be considered your name needs to be on the trackers.

Learn more about ISO and package testing on the Ubuntu wiki.

Terms

Test images are available outside of the milestone periods for dailies. A limit of one sticker bundle is available per tester. The winning tester will be notified at the end of each period and contacted by our marketing lead for shipment details.

Thanks

Thanks to UnixStickers.com for graciously donating the Xubuntu Sticker Bundles for us to give out.

Thanks to the Ubuntu Community Fund for covering the price of incidental materials and shipping for these bundles.

Finally, thanks to everybody who has done manual testing for us!

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