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Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 381

The Fridge - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 15:14

Tony Yarusso: Propane Grill

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 14:29

I'm looking for one that has side shelves (sometimes called a warming shelf in specs), a thermometer, and is on wheels.

  Estimated Cost $200Last updated on 09/01/2014 - 16:29 Big house itemsRequested 1Purchased 0  

Tony Yarusso: The Opposite of Cold: The Northwoods Finnish Sauna Tradition

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 14:18

Beginning with the origins of Finnish sauna and how the practice was first brought to North America, and continuing all the way to contemporary design, The Opposite of Cold is an exquisite commemoration of the history, culture, and practice of Finnish sauna in the northwoods. With stunning photographs of unique and historic saunas of the region-including the oldest sauna in North America, incredible surviving saunas from immigrant farmsteads, and the gorgeous contemporary saunas from noted architects-Michael Nordskog and Aaron Hautala unveil the importance and beauty of sauna culture in modern Midwestern life.

  Estimated Cost $18See www.amazon.com/dp/0816656827See www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-opposite-of-cold-m...Last updated on 09/01/2014 - 16:18 Nice to haveRequested 1Purchased 0  

Elizabeth K. Joseph: CI, Validation and more at DebConf14

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 11:54

I’ve been a Debian user since 2002 and got my first package into Debian in 2006. Though I continued to maintain a couple packages through the years, my open source interests (and career) have expanded significantly so that I now spend much more time with Ubuntu and OpenStack than anything else. Still, I do still host Bay Area Debian events in San Francisco and when I learned that DebConf14 would only be quick plane flight away from home I was eager for the opportunity to attend.

Given my other obligations, I decided to come in halfway through the conference, arriving Wednesday evening. Thursday was particularly interesting to me because they were doing most of the Debian Validation & CI discussions then. Given my day job on the OpenStack Infrastructure team, it seemed to be a great place to meet other folks who are interested in CI and see where our team could support Debian’s initiatives.

First up was the Validation and Continuous Integration BoF led by Neil Williams.

It was interesting to learn the current validation methods being used in Debian, including:

From there talk moved into what kinds of integration tests people wanted, where various ideas were covered, including package sets (collections of related packages) and how to inject “dirty” data into systems to test in more real world like situations. Someone also mentioned doing tests on more real systems rather than in chrooted environments.

Discussion touched upon having a Gerrit-like workflow that had packages submitted for review and testing prior to landing in the archive. This led to my having some interesting conversations with the drivers of Gerrit efforts in Debian after the session (nice to meet you, mika!). There was also discussion about notification to developers when their packages run afoul of the testing infrastructure, either themselves or as part of a dependency chain (who wants notifications? how to make them useful and not overwhelming?).

I’ve uploaded the gobby notes from the session here: validation-bof and the video of the session is available on the meetings-archive.

Next up on the schedule was debci and the Debian Continuous Integration project presented by Antonio Terceiro. He gave a tour of the Debian Continuous Integration system and talked about how packages can take advantage of the system by having their own test suites. He also discussed some about the current architecture for handling tests and optimizations they want to make in the future. Documentation for debci can be found here: ci.debian.net/doc/. Video of the session is also available on the meetings-archive.

The final CI talk I went to of the day was Automated Validation in Debian using LAVA where Neil Williams gave a tour of the expanded LAVA (Linaro Automated Validation Architecture). I heard about it back when it was a more simple ARM-only testing infrastructure, but it’s grown beyond that to now test distribution kernel images, package combinations and installer images and has been encouraging folks to write tests. He also talked about some of the work they’re doing to bring along LAVA demo stations to conferences, nice! Slides from this talk are available on the debconf annex site, here: http://annex.debconf.org/debconf-share/debconf14/slides/lava/

On Friday I also bumped into a testing-related talk by Paul Wise during a series of Live Demos, he showed off check-all-the-things which runs a pile of tools against your project to check… all the things, detecting what it needs to do automatically. Check out the README for rationale, and for a taste of things it checks and future plans, have a peek at some of the data files, like this one.

It’s really exciting to see more effort being spent on testing in Debian, and open source projects in general. This has long been the space of companies doing private, internal testing of open source products they use and reporting results back to projects in the form of patches and bug reports. Having the projects themselves provide QA is a huge step for the maturity of open source, and I believe will lead to even more success for projects as we move into the future.

The rest of DebConf for me was following my more personal interests in Debian. I also have to admit that my lack of involvement lately made me feel like a bit of an outsider and I’m quite shy anyway, so I was thankful to know a few Debian folks who I could hang out with and join for meals.

On Thursday evening I attended A glimpse into a systemd future by Josh Triplett. I haven’t really been keeping up with systemd news or features, so I learned a lot. I have to say, it would be great to see things like session management, screen brightness and other user settings be controlled by something lower level than the desktop environment. Friday I attended Thomas Goirand’s OpenStack update & packaging experience sharing. I’ve been loosely tracking this, but it was good to learn that Jessie will come with Icehouse and that install docs exist for Wheezy (here).

I also attended Outsourcing your webapp maintenance to Debian with Francois Marier. The rationale for his talk was that one should build their application with the mature versions of web frameworks included with Debian in mind, making it so you don’t have the burden of, say, managing Django along with your Django-based app, since Debian handles that. I continue to have mixed feelings when it comes to webapps in the main Debian repository, while some developers who are interested in reducing maintenance burden are ok with using older versions shipped with Debian, most developers I’ve worked with are very much not in this camp and I’m better off trying to support what they want than fighting with them about versions. Then it was off to Docker + Debian = ♥ with Paul Tagliamonte where he talked about some of his best practices for using Docker on Debian and ideas for leveraging it more in development (having multiple versions of services running on one host, exporting docker images to help with replication of tests and development environments).

Friday night Linus Torvalds joined us for a Q&A session. As someone who has put a lot of work into making friendly environments for new open source contributors, I can’t say I’m thrilled with his abrasive conduct in the Linux kernel project. I do worry that he sets a tone that impressionable kernel hackers then go on to emulate, perpetuating the caustic environment that spills out beyond just the kernel, but he has no interest in changing. That aside, it was interesting to hear him talk about other aspects of his work, his thoughts on systemd, a rant about compiling against specific libraries for every distro and versions (companies won’t do it, they’ll just ship their own statically linked ones) and his continued comments in support of Google Chrome.

DebConf wrapped up on Sunday. I spent the morning in one of the HackLabs catching up on some work, and at 1:30 headed up to the Plenary room for the last few talks of the event, starting with a series of lightning talks. A few of the talks stood out for me, including Geoffrey Thomas’ talk on being a bit of an outsider at DebConf and how difficult it is to be running a non-Debian/Linux system at the event. I’ve long been disappointed when people bring along their proprietary OSes to Linux events, but he made good points about people being able to contribute without fully “buying in” to having free software everywhere, including their laptop. He’s right. Margarita Manterola shared some stats from the Mini-DebConf Barcelona which focused on having only female speakers, it was great to hear such positive statistics, particularly since DebConf14 itself had a pretty poor ratio, there were several talks I attended (particularly around CI) where I was the only woman in the room. It was also interesting to learn about safe-rm to save us from ourselves and non-free.org to help make a distinction between what is Debian and what is not.

There was also a great talk by Vagrant Cascadian about his work on packages that he saw needed help but he didn’t necessarily know everything about, and encouraged others to take the same leap to work on things that may be outside their comfort zone. To help he listed several resources people could use to find work in Debian:

Next up for the afternoon was the Bits from the Release Team where they fleshed out what the next few months leading up to the freeze would look like and sharing the Jessie Freeze Policy.

DebConf wrapped up with a thank you to the volunteers (thank you!) and peek at the next DebConf, to be held in Heidelberg, Germany the 15th-22nd of August 2015.

Then it was off to the airport for me!

The rest of my photos from DebConf14 here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/pleia2/sets/72157646626186269/

Svetlana Belkin: Why do I Contribute to Open Source?

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 11:35

Note: Before I start this post, in my last post, “Why I Use Open Source”, I made a couple of errors based on what they commented on, mainly on the whole, “who had tabbed Internet browsers first”.  I will do my homework (read: research) and see who is right.

As I said in, Why I Use Open Source” (link above), I have one more example why I use Open Source and also contribute to it.  No, wait!  I have two examples and they will be order based on importance to me.

Example One: Sense of Community

This one is the big one for me, more than the recognition factor.  I don’t know why I feel a very excellent sense of community within the Ubuntu Community.  Maybe it’s the first FOSS/Linux community that I got my head into and was able to get something done.  Why am I saying this?  I found that because of the checks and balances nature of the Open Source and also the volunteer nature, that the members understand what they are creating and giving away will help the greater good.  Also, many of these members are liked-minded and like and like will stick together and care for each other.

Or maybe it’s because throughout the various things that I done with community service (A.K.A. service learning), I have learned that in certain communities, there is a sense of people caring for each other and many of them are like-minded. I think I done about 100 hours of community service where I volunteered at my freshman high school (I went to a school district had freshmen in one building and the 10 -12 graders in another) for a concert band contest to doing 50 hours (I needed 25 hours for a class but ended up doing 50) at a non-profit place that offers free arts and crafts to kids.  Even though I wasn’t helping the kids to create their masterpieces, I was working two and half hours, two times a week, to get the materials ready.  I didn’t mind being the background worker.  But I knew that I gave an impact to the community because I knew that what I was helping to get ready will be given away to kids who want to be creative and want to learn how to create something with there own two hands.

After four years of being an Ubuntu user, I finally gave into the Ubuntu Community and I enjoying so far.  After one year of working in the Community, I really do have great sense on how the Community is no matter the size of it.  I really want to move on into another one, maybe a Open Science one that doesn’t really require anyone to know how to develop/code.

Example Two: Sense of Recognition

If you read books or articles about community, one consistent theme you will find in almost all of them is the importance of recognizing  the contributions that people make. In fact, if you look at a wide variety of successful communities, you would find that one common thing they all offer in exchange for contribution is recognition. It is the fuel that communities run on.  It’s what connects the contributor to their goal, both selfish and selfless. In fact, with open source, the only way a contribution can actually stolen is by now allowing that recognition to happen.  Even the most permissive licenses require attribution, something that tells everybody who made it.

-Michael Hall, from “Why do you contribute to open source?

I do agree with this quote above because there won’t be anyone who wants to contribute if they are not recognized for their work.

At least in the Ubuntu Community (I don’t know about other FOSS communities), the biggest way that one can be recognized for their work is the Ubuntu Membership and it’s perks.  Even though I’m a community building centred person, I still post news about the teams that am I part of or lessons that I have learned.  These posts are useful because they show what I do and how they impact the community.

In my next post I will talk about why I blog since I have talked about here.

Jo Shields: Xamarin Apt and Yum repos now open for testing

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 09:46

Howdy y’all

Two of the main things I’ve been working on since I started at Xamarin are making it easier for people to try out the latest bleeding-edge Mono, and making it easier for people on older distributions to upgrade Mono without upgrading their entire OS.

Public Jenkins packages

Every time anyone commits to Mono git master or MonoDevelop git master, our public Jenkins will try and turn those into packages, and add them to repositories. There’s a garbage collection policy – currently the 20 most recent builds are always kept, then the first build of the month for everything older than 20 builds.

Because we’re talking potentially broken packages here, I wrote a simple environment mangling script called mono-snapshot. When you install a Jenkins package, mono-snapshot will also be installed and configured. This allows you to have multiple Mono versions installed at once, for easy bug bisecting.

directhex@marceline:~$ mono --version Mono JIT compiler version 3.6.0 (tarball Wed Aug 20 13:05:36 UTC 2014) directhex@marceline:~$ . mono-snapshot mono [mono-20140828234844]directhex@marceline:~$ mono --version Mono JIT compiler version 3.8.1 (tarball Fri Aug 29 07:11:20 UTC 2014)

The instructions for setting up the Jenkins packages are on the new Mono web site, specifically here. The packages are built on CentOS 7 x64, Debian 7 x64, and Debian 7 i386 – they should work on most newer distributions or derivatives.

Stable release packages

This has taken a bit longer to get working. The aim is to offer packages in our Apt/Yum repositories for every Mono release, in a timely fashion, more or less around the same time as the Mac installers are released. Info for setting this up is, again, on the new website.

Like the Jenkins packages, they are designed as far as I am able to cleanly integrate with different versions of major popular distributions – though there are a few instances of ABI breakage in there which I have opted to fix using one evil method rather than another evil method.

Please note that these are still at “preview” or “beta” quality, and shouldn’t be considered usable in major production environments until I get a bit more user feedback. The RPM packages especially are super new, and I haven’t tested them exhaustively at this point – I’d welcome feedback.

I hope to remove the “testing!!!” warning labels from these packages soon, but that relies on user feedback to my xamarin.com account preferably (jo.shields@)

Marcin Juszkiewicz: Year at Red Hat

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 09:08

In the morning I got an email:

Dear Marcin Juszkiewicz,

Congratulations on your one-year anniversary with Red Hat! Thank you for your commitment and work over the past year. We hope that it has been everything you expected it to be and look forward to celebrating your future success with the company.

Yes, already year passed since I joined ARM team at Red Hat. It was a good time and I do not plan to change it ;)

What I did during that time? Managed to get several packages built for AArch64, sent many patches upstream (some were easy, other required several updates) and even got one machine to use at home. It was not an easy ride but I am glad that I went that way.

I had some ARMv7a work done but over 80% of time spent with AArch64. First in simulators but then hardware started coming. First shared one with other developers (timezone differences helped a lot), then got remote one for own development use and finally one machine landed under my desk (the only one in Poland at that time). Do I have to add how it simplified work? GVim over X11 just works so the only difference is colorscheme and font used ;D

What next? More AArch64 work. There are still packages which fail to build ;D

All rights reserved © Marcin Juszkiewicz
Year at Red Hat was originally posted on Marcin Juszkiewicz website

Related posts:

  1. It is 10 years of Linux on ARM for me
  2. AArch64 can build OpenEmbedded
  3. Going for FOSDEM

Valorie Zimmerman: Steven Pinker's The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature

Planet Ubuntu - Mon, 09/01/2014 - 01:04
Steven Pinker's The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature

Interesting, engaging, and sometimes challenging. My only criticism of the book is that he dwells a bit on fads in academia which are fading, but since he's been extensively challenged by that crowd, I suppose it is forgivable.

I'll quote extensively from the last chapter, but first, Emily Dickinson (quoted in that final chapter):
The Brain--is wider than the Sky--
For--put them side to side--
The one the other will contain
With ease--and you--beside-- The Brain is deeper than the sea--
For--hold them--Blue to Blue--
The one the other will absorb--
As Sponges--Buckets--do-- The Brain is just the weight of God--
For--Heft them--Pound for Pound--
And they will differ--if they do--
As Syllable from Sound--And the beginning of the final chapter:
The Blank Slate was an attractive vision. It promised to make racism, sexism, and class prejudice factually untenable. It appeared to be a bulwark against the kind of thinking that led to ethnic genocide. It aimed to prevent people from slipping into a premature fatalism about preventable social ills. It put the spotlight on the treatment of children, indigenous peoples, and the underclass. The Blank Slate thus became part of secular faith and appeared to constitute the common decency of our age.  But the Blank Slate had, and has, a dark side. The vacuum that was posited in human nature was eagerly filled by totalitarian regimes, and it did nothing to prevent their genocides. It perverts education, child-rearing, and the arts into forms of social engineering. It torments mothers who work outside the home and parents whose children did not turn out as they would have liked. It threatens to outlaw biomedical research that could alleviate human suffering. Its corollary, the Noble Savage, invites contempt for the principles of democracy and of "a government of laws not of men." It blinds us to our cognitive and moral shortcomings. And in matters of policy it has elevated sappy dogmas above the search for workable solutions. The Blank Slate is not some ideal that we should all hope and pray is true. No, it is anti-life, anti-human theoretical abstraction that denies our common humanity, our inherent interests, and our individual preferences. Though it has pretensions of celebrating our potential, it does the opposite, because our potential comes from the combinatorial interplay of wonderfully complex faculties, not from the passive blankness of an empty tablet. Regardless of its good and bad effects, the Blank Slate is an empirical hypothesis about the functioning of the brain and must be evaluated in terms of whether or not it is true. The modern sciences of mind, brain, genes, and evolution are increasingly showing that it is not true. The result is a rearguard effort to salvage the Blank Slate by disfiguring science and intellectual life: denying the possibility of objectivity and truth, dumbing down issues into dichotomies, replacing facts and logic with intellectual posturing. The Blank Slate became so deeply entrenched in intellectual life that the prospect of doing without it can be deeply unsettling. ...Is science leading to a place where prejudice is right, where children may be neglected, where Machiavellianism is accepted, where inequality and violence are met with resignation, where people are treated like machines? Not at all! By unhandcuffing widely shared values from moribund factual dogmas, the rationale for these values can only become clearer. We understand *why* we condemn prejudice, cruelty to children, and violence against women, and can focus our efforts on how to implement the goals we value most. ... ... Acknowledging human nature does not mean overturning our personal world views... It means only taking intellectual life out of its parallel universe and reuniting it with science and, when it is borne out by science, by common sense.This book was published in 2002, and I think Pinker and his fellow scientists who investigate human nature are beginning to make headway. This book was a good reminder of some of the nonsense we are now sweeping into the dustbin of history, and new understanding of human nature now coming to light.

Costales: Folder Color: New custom color for each folder

Planet Ubuntu - Sun, 08/31/2014 - 08:23
I developed this little (but really useful) improvement to Folder Color: Now, you can choose a custom color for each folder in our Ubuntu!

New improvement: Choose a custom color
What is Folder Color?
It's an application for changing the color of a folder in Ubuntu with just a right-click. Really useful for easily spotting folders in 12 preconfigured colours!

Easy, fast and useful
Let's see a video with Folder Color in action!

How can you install?
  • In a Terminal from the PPA:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:costales/folder-color
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install folder-color
  • If you have already installed Folder Color from the PPA, just update your system:
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install folder-color
You need to logout from your current session (or kill nautilus with nautilus -q) after the installation.

What do you need?
Just Ubuntu (or derivate) & Nautilus, the file browser by default in Ubuntu :)

+info: Oficial web.

Svetlana Belkin: Why do I Use Open Source?

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 08/30/2014 - 12:03

I decided to respond to Michael Hall’s post, “Why do you contribute to open source?“, but first I will explain why I use open source and in the next post, I will explain why I contribute to it.  I don’t only use it because it’s almost free to use but for the intuitive sense of things that I see in all of the programs that I use.  This intuitive sense matches up with the way that I think and how I do things.

I have three examples why I use Open Source:

Example One: Evernote Ink Notes vs. Xournal- A Shift in My Workflow

This example is a recent thing that happened to me.  On Monday, August, 25, 2014 (first day of my last school year of my undergrad years), I was able to restore my Nexus 7 2013 back to Android from Ubuntu Touch since Ubuntu Touch wasn’t worth while to use (for now) as a working tablet.  For those who want to know, you need at least 2 GB of RAM to use the ./flash-all.sh command.  I only restored my tablet- meaning that I didn’t brother to install a custom ROM on it (don’t ask me why).  After I restored, I installed the Evernote app and signed in to it.  The hour before I restored my tablet, I was in my eight A.M. class and I took hand-written notes on my netbook, Evernote Ink Notes, and my Wacom Intous 4 pen and tablet.  When I opened the notes on my tablet and they looked horrible!  Not because I have chicken scratch for my handwriting (it does get bad at times) but because it was zoomed in and I had to finger scroll.  I had no way to zoom out.  And the UX of the app is just not fun to use.

After that first use of the Evernote, I decided to go back and use my favorite handwritten note-taking program, Xournal, but with some tweaks.  One of them being all of my notes for one class is be one file, when possible, which is for my eight A.M. class.  The other one is be convert the presentation slides for my second and also last class (I have two this term) into PDF and annotate that PDF.

The only problem with this workflow is that Xournal is X based not Qt based.  That means when Mir and Unity 8 comes out, I won’t be able to use my favorite program!  But maybe I could work with some developers and get some of the features of Xournal into the Reminders app.

Example Two: Open Source has More Intuitive Minds

I have noticed that many of the programs that I use have features that are latter used in non-open source programs.  Who had tabs first in Internet browsers?  Firefox.  Conversion from a word/spreadsheet/presentation to PDF?  OpenOffice.  This goes to show that who are more daring to be more intuitive.

When Unity first introduced back in Ubuntu 11.04, it was hard for me to get used to it at first.  I think it took me maybe two months to tell myself to that is the change can be good.  After I installed 11.04, I saw that Unity increased my productivity.  I found that searching in the Dash of Unity was faster than scrolling and clicking through folders on the menu.  Unity is quiet intuitive to my mind and it was here before Windows 8.  Another example of open source having more intuitive minds.

Example three will be in my next post when I will talk about why I contribute to Open Source.  Most likely, I will have a series of posts about why I’m in the FOSS community and other subjects such as why I blog.


José Antonio Rey: FOSSETCON in two weeks – See you there!

Planet Ubuntu - Sat, 08/30/2014 - 09:28

A while ago I posted about FOSSETCON (Free and Open Source Software Expo and Technology Conference), but now the time has come. In less than two weeks the conference will be taking place, and I cannot wait to fly over there!

FOSSETCON will start on Thursday, September 11th with day 0. We will have an Ubucon the whole day! Panels, workshops, make sure you don’t miss it. I’ll be flying during that day and hope I can get there at least for the last session.

During the 12th and 13th there will be an expo hall, as well as several talks! I will be with the Ubuntu Florida LoCo Team in the Ubuntu booth. Make sure to visit us there if you want to take a look at the Ubuntu phones and tablets, and maybe get some swag? Who knows.

On the other hand, I will be hosting a 40-minute Juju Charm School during day 1 (September 12th) at 10:30am local time. Make sure to attend if you wanna get a glimpse of what’s up with Juju and all the things you can do with it, including a bit of development.

In case you’re wondering. Yes, I will have the so-loved Orange Box! If you want to see it in action or just give it a hug, make sure to go to FOSSETCON!

You can buy your tickets for FOSSETCON by clicking here. There are three ticket options: the Training Pass, the Conference Pass and the Supporter Pass. You can find more information about each ticket type on the link.

Also, if you have already got your copy of the Official Ubuntu Book, 8th edition and want me to sign it for you, I will be more than happy to.

Don’t be shy and say hi, maybe we can grab a coffee after conference hours. See you all there!

Costales: Destino Ubuconla 2014 - #11 The End

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 08/29/2014 - 11:27
Antes del viaje todo el mundo me advertía de que Colombia es un país muy peligroso para el turista... ¡Colombia... ays Colombia! ¡Qué país! El viajero encontrará paisajes extraordinarios, vertiginosas ciudades llenas de historia grabada a fuego durante siglos, una gastronomía exquisita y su gente que hace a este país especial, al ritmo de su música rumbera, abiertos, alegres y muy hospitalarios. Como bromean por aquí, el peligro es que te quieras quedar :P

perdiéndose por los mercados callejeros
de sus callesy disfrutando el alma de este pueblocon sus junglas de asfaltoy sus junglas reales(jue con la 'hormiguita')... hasta el infinito y más allá
Del viaje en particular podría destacar muchísimas cosas, las playas, las islas, los pueblos, las ciudades, la gastronomía, incluso el calor sofocante; pero no, no voy a destacar nada de todo eso.
Destaco los momentos únicos con personas únicas, que hicieron de este viaje, un viaje único ;) ¡Gracias a todos/as! ¡Hasta la próxima!

Next station? El destino dirá
Todas las entradas del viaje:

Gracias a todos/as por 'acompañarnos' en este relato
... The end ...

Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S07E22 – The One with the Joke

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 08/29/2014 - 09:34

We’re back with Season Seven, Episode Twenty of the Ubuntu Podcast! Alan Pope, Mark Johnson, and Laura Cowen are drinking tea and eating homemade tiffin in Studio L.

 Download OGG  Download MP3 Play in Popup

In this week’s show:

  • We interview Daniel Holbach from the Ubuntu Community Team…

  • We also discuss:

    • Playing with old console games…
    • Raising a bug on Ubuntu…
    • Attending JISC SOC Innovation…
  • We share some Command Line Lurve that sets up a Socks proxy on localhost port xxx which you can use to (say) browse the web from some_host (from @MartijnVdS): ssh -D xxx some_host
  • And we read your feedback. Thanks for sending it in!

We’ll be back next week, so please send your comments and suggestions to: podcast@ubuntu-uk.org
Join us on IRC in #uupc on Freenode
Leave a voicemail via phone: +44 (0) 203 298 1600, sip: podcast@sip.ubuntu-uk.org and skype: ubuntuukpodcast
Follow us on Twitter
Find our Facebook Fan Page
Follow us on Google+

Ronnie Tucker: Full Circle #88 is out NOW!

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 08/29/2014 - 09:03

This month:
* Command & Conquer
* How-To : Minimal Ubuntu Install, LibreOffice, and GRUB2.
* Graphics : Blender and Inkscape.
* Linux Labs: Ripping DVDs with Handdrake, and Compiling a Kernel
* Arduino
plus: Q&A, Security, Ubuntu Games, and soooo much more.

ALSO: Don’t forget to search for ‘full circle magazine’ on Google Play/Books.



Costales: Destino Ubuconla 2014 - #10 Lisboa (escala Miami)

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 08/29/2014 - 07:36
Engullimos como patos el extraordinario desayuno buffet. El motivo no es otro que teníamos el tiempo muy justo por salir temprano el avión.

Me acordaré de por vida del día de hoy y del Gran Hermano actual...
Antes de despegar de Bogotá Avianca nos obligó a pagar el ESTA americano (14$), en caso contrario, la multaban.
Tras aterrizar en la ciudad de Dexter Morgan debemos entregar 'voluntariamente' pasaporte, datos, declaración de aduana, declaración ESTA, que nos tomen las huellas dactilares y foto... Ni mi propio gobierno sabe tanto de mi como USA ¬¬ Y eso que sólo queríamos cambiar de avión.
También me sorprendieron las cámaras en el aeropuerto, una cada 20m.
Señoras y señores, esto mete miéu. Me acordé muchísimo de Juan Carlos y sus razones para encriptar nuestras comunicaciones.
En Bogotá nos habían dicho que el equipaje lo recogíamos en Lisboa, pero nos enteramos de casualidad de que había que cogerlo en la cinta de maletas de Miami para llevarlo a un mostrador a 50m ?:O No quedaron las maletas en Miami de milagro.

Y tras el vuelo de 7 horas y pico de avión desde Miami, llegamos a Lisboa.
La capital estaba amaneciendo y prestó pasear sus calles y plazas desiertas.
¿Dónde está la gente?
Eso sí, durante demasiadas horas nuestro radio de acción consistió en 250m de radio desde el punto de información turística (la razón no es otra que nuestra diarrea seguía a su ritmo y ahí había un baño público de pago).
EN + [PT|AST] :PDescansamos en el hotel toda la tarde, posiblemente debido al jetlag. Y a la hora de cenar disfrutamos de sardinas y bonito, acompañados de un excelente vino verde.

Intentando olvidar el jetlagAl día siguiente tocó volver p'Asturies, tras un viaje exprimido hasta en su último minuto, pero ese resumen pertenece al post final :)

Ñam, ñam...
Al otru lláu de la mar... Colombia :)
Y nos encontramos con el día más caluroso del año
Continúa leyendo más de este viaje.

Ubuntu GNOME: [Voting] Ubuntu GNOME 14.10 Wallpaper Contest

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 08/29/2014 - 04:59


This is our second official Wallpaper Contest for Ubuntu GNOME and this time, it is for Utopic Unicorn.

We ask our community to help us to vote for your desired wallpaper.

To vote, kindly click at this link.

Contest Rules

  • Contest ends on 05-09-2014
  • You have to vote on at least 1 photo
  • You can vote on max 3 photos

As per this email form Ubuntu GNOME Artwork Team, there will be 10 wallpapers to be chosen and these will be included with Ubuntu GNOME 14.10 by default.

We appreciate your time to vote and your help.

Thank you!

On behalf of Ubuntu GNOME Artwork Team

Kubuntu Wire: Kubuntu on LinkedIn

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 08/29/2014 - 02:43

We can sit in our own nerdy world in open source communities too much so at Kubuntu we have been setting up social media forums and we have just added a LinkedIn page for Kubuntu which should get the usual news stories of new releases and updates.  There is also a Kubuntu Users group on LinkedIn if you want to share experiences with people who like to take more of a business approach to their computers than users of other social media websites.

14.10 Beta 1 is out, you can give us feedback on Google + or Facebook or Twitter or Linkedin

Daniel Pocock: Welcoming libphonenumber to Debian and Ubuntu

Planet Ubuntu - Fri, 08/29/2014 - 01:02

Google's libphonenumber is a universal library for parsing, validating, identifying and formatting phone numbers. It works quite well for numbers from just about anywhere. Here is a Java code sample (C++ and JavaScript also supported) from their web site:

String swissNumberStr = "044 668 18 00";
PhoneNumberUtil phoneUtil = PhoneNumberUtil.getInstance();
try {
  PhoneNumber swissNumberProto = phoneUtil.parse(swissNumberStr, "CH");
} catch (NumberParseException e) {
  System.err.println("NumberParseException was thrown: " + e.toString());
boolean isValid = phoneUtil.isValidNumber(swissNumberProto); // returns true
// Produces "+41 44 668 18 00"
System.out.println(phoneUtil.format(swissNumberProto, PhoneNumberFormat.INTERNATIONAL));
// Produces "044 668 18 00"
System.out.println(phoneUtil.format(swissNumberProto, PhoneNumberFormat.NATIONAL));
// Produces "+41446681800"
System.out.println(phoneUtil.format(swissNumberProto, PhoneNumberFormat.E164));

This is particularly useful for anybody working with international phone numbers. This is a common requirement in the world of VoIP where people mix-and-match phones and hosted PBXes in different countries and all their numbers have to be normalized.

About the packages

The new libphonenumber package provides support for C++ and Java users. Upstream also supports JavaScript but that hasn't been packaged yet.

Using libphonenumber from Evolution and other software

Lumicall, the secure SIP/ZRTP client for Android, has had libphonenumber from the beginning. It is essential when converting dialed numbers into E.164 format to make ENUM queries and it is also helpful to normalize all the numbers before passing them to VoIP gateways.

Debian includes the GNOME Evolution suite and it will use libphonenumber to improve handling of phone numbers in contact records if enabled at compile time. Fredrik has submitted a patch for that in Debian.

Many more applications can potentially benefit from this too. libphonenumber is released under an Apache license so it is compatible with the Mozilla license and suitable for use in Thunderbird plugins.

Improving libphonenumber

It is hard to keep up with the changes in dialing codes around the world. Phone companies and sometimes even whole countries come and go from time to time. Numbering plans change to add extra digits. New prefixes are created for new mobile networks. libphonenumber contains metadata for all the countries and telephone numbers that the authors are aware of but they also welcome feedback through their mailing list for anything that is not quite right.

Now that libphonenumber is available as a package, it may be helpful for somebody to try and find a way to split the metadata from the code so that metadata changes could be distributed through the stable updates catalog along with other volatile packages such as anti-virus patterns.

Robert Collins: Test processes as servers

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 21:10

Since its very early days subunit has had a single model – you run a process, it outputs test results. This works great, except when it doesn’t.

On the up side, you have a one way pipeline – there’s no interactivity needed, which makes it very very easy to write a subunit backend that e.g. testr can use.

On the downside, there’s no interactivity, which means that anytime you want to do something with those tests, a new process is needed – and thats sometimes quite expensive – particularly in test suites with 10’s of thousands of tests.Now, for use in the development edit-execute loop, this is arguably ok, because one needs to load the new tests into memory anyway; but wouldn’t it be nice if tools like testr that run tests for you didn’t have to decide upfront exactly how they were going to run. If instead they could get things running straight away and then give progressively larger and larger units of work to be run, without forcing a new process (and thus new discovery directory walking and importing) ? Secondly, testr has an inconsistent interface – if testr is letting a user debug things to testr through to child workers in a chain, it needs to use something structured (e.g. subunit) and route stdin to the actual worker, but the final testr needs to unwrap everything – this is needlessly complex. Lastly, for some languages at least, its possibly to dynamically pick up new code at runtime – so a simple inotify loop and we could avoid new-process (and more importantly complete-enumeration) *entirely*, leading to very fast edit-test cycles.

So, in this blog post I’m really running this idea up the flagpole, and trying to sketch out the interface – and hopefully get feedback on it.

Taking subunit.run as an example process to do this to:

  1. There should be an option to change from one-shot to server mode
  2. In server mode, it will listen for commands somewhere (lets say stdin)
  3. On startup it might eager load the available tests
  4. One command would be list-tests – which would enumerate all the tests to its output channel (which is stdout today – so lets stay with that for now)
  5. Another would be run-tests, which would take a set of test ids, and then filter-and-run just those ids from the available tests, output, as it does today, going to stdout. Passing somewhat large sets of test ids in may be desirable, because some test runners perform fixture optimisations (e.g. bringing up DB servers or web servers) and test-at-a-time is pretty much worst case for that sort of environment.
  6. Another would be be std-in a command providing a packet of stdin – used for interacting with debuggers

So that seems pretty approachable to me – we don’t even need an async loop in there, as long as we’re willing to patch select etc (for the stdin handling in some environments like Twisted). If we don’t want to monkey patch like that, we’ll need to make stdin a socketpair, and have an event loop running to shepard bytes from the real stdin to the one we let the rest of Python have.

What about that nirvana above? If we assume inotify support, then list_tests (and run_tests) can just consult a changed-file list and reload those modules before continuing. Reloading them just-in-time would be likely to create havoc – I think reloading only when synchronised with test completion makes a great deal of sense.

Would such a test server make sense in other languages?  What about e.g. testtools.run vs subunit.run – such a server wouldn’t want to use subunit, but perhaps a regular CLI UI would be nice…

The Fridge: Ubuntu 14.10 (Utopic Unicorn) beta-1 released!

Planet Ubuntu - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 14:56

The first beta of the Utopic Unicorn (to become 14.10) has now been released!

This beta features images for Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu GNOME, UbuntuKylin, Xubuntu and the Ubuntu Cloud images.

Pre-releases of the Utopic Unicorn are *not* encouraged for anyone needing a stable system or anyone who is not comfortable running into occasional, even frequent breakage. They are, however, recommended for Ubuntu flavor developers and those who want to help in testing, reporting and fixing bugs as we work towards getting this release ready.

Beta 1 includes a number of software updates that are ready for wider testing. This is quite an early set of images, so you should expect some bugs.

While these Beta 1 images have been tested and work, except as noted in the release notes, Ubuntu developers are continuing to improve the Utopic Unicorn. In particular, once newer daily images are available, system installation bugs identified in the Beta 1 installer should be verified against the current daily image before being reported in Launchpad. Using an obsolete image to re-report bugs that have already been fixed wastes your time and the time of developers who are busy trying to make 14.10 the best Ubuntu release yet. Always ensure your system is up to date before reporting bugs.


Kubuntu is the KDE based flavour of Ubuntu. It uses the Plasma desktop and includes a wide selection of tools from the KDE project.

Kubuntu development is now focussing on the next generation of KDE Software, Plasma 5. This is not yet stable enough for everyday use, so our default option is the trusted Plasma 4 desktop. A tech preview of Plasma 5 is available for those who want to try out the future.

The Beta-1 images can be downloaded at:


More information on Kubuntu Beta-1 can be found here:


Lubuntu is a flavor of Ubuntu based on LXDE and focused on providing a very lightweight distribution.

Lubuntu development is currently focused on the transition away from GTK+ to the Qt framework. This is not stable enough for everyday use, so the focus this version is on fixing bugs.

The Beta 1 images can be downloaded at:

Ubuntu GNOME

Ubuntu GNOME is a flavor of Ubuntu featuring the GNOME desktop environment.

The Beta-1 images can be downloaded at:

More information on Ubuntu GNOME Beta-1 can be found here:


UbuntuKylin is a flavor of Ubuntu that is more suitable for Chinese users.

The Beta-1 images can be downloaded at:

More information on UbuntuKylin Beta-1 can be found here:


Xubuntu is a flavor of Ubuntu shipping with the XFCE desktop environment.

The Beta-1 images can be downloaded at:

More information on Xubuntu Beta-1 can be found here:

Ubuntu Cloud

These images can be run on Amazon EC2, Openstack, SmartOS and many other clouds. Beta-1 images have been published to Windows Azure and Amazon EC2.


Regular daily images for Ubuntu Cloud can be found at:

Daily Images

Regular daily images for Ubuntu can be found at: http://cdimage.ubuntu.com

If you’re interested in following the changes as we further develop Utopic, we suggest that you subscribe to the ubuntu-devel-announce list. This is a low-traffic list (a few posts a week) carrying announcements of approved specifications, policy changes, beta releases and other interesting events.


A big thank you to the developers and testers for their efforts to pull together this Beta release!

Originally posted to the ubuntu-devel-announce mailing list on Thu Aug 28 21:04:39 UTC 2014 by Stéphane Graber


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