The Latest

Firefox 3 Is Given to the World – Or Maybe Not

As you may have noticed, Firefox 3 is released today. Excited by this prospect, the first thing I did when I got up was to rush to my computer to download it (yes, pathetic, I know). And what do I find? more>>

Rakarrack: Guitar FX For Linux

Linux-based guitar effects processors haven't exactly been flourishing recently. Until recently, the guitar FX processors page at listed twelve projects, of which the most recent maintenance date is 2006. Clearly, not a flourishing domain for Linux audio developers. Not that Linux lacks realtime effects processing capabilities: Pd can be pressed into any audio service imaginable, the JACK Rack can be configured for LADSPA-based effects, but they are not organized and optimized specifically for guitarists. However, a thirteenth entry has joined the collection at, and this entry is most definitely organized, optimized, and intended for guitarists. more>>

Becta Flipped Out for Friday the Thirteenth

Friday the Thirteenth is supposed to be a day full of bad luck, with misfortune lurking around every corner and monsters run amok. Perhaps it was coincidence, or maybe the full moon, but for the Open Source community across the pond, the jinx was in full force. more>>

Killing "Tap to Click"

I'm about to travel which usually means getting my ASUS Z3300 ready to travel. While it is less than perfect (mostly because of its small keyboard) it is the right size for a trip. The only real irritation I have had with it is the synaptics touchpad. Or, more accurately, the tap to click feature. It just doesn't seem to be compatible with the way I type. more>>

Canada Creates Copyright Controversy with Half-and-Half Bill

The digital world has provided endless opportunities to expand and distribute content — and a near-endless stream of tactics from corporate forces to keep that content under very tight control. Under new legislation proposed in Canada, some of those restrictive tactics would lose their sting, though others seem poised to head off the whole point at the pass. more>>

Banshee Wails its Way to 1.0

The coming of the banshee isn't generally considered a welcome appearance, however, it was last week as the Banshee jukebox reached its first stable release with Version 1.0. more>>

Convert a File to a C Data Structure

Yesterday's post about embedding a file in an executable has gotten a couple of replies about programs that will convert the file to a C data structure. This is certainly an option, here's a script that does that without the need to go searching for programs, it uses standard Linux tools: more>>

What it's all about . . .

Ever wonder why a guy like me writes all these articles, pens all these books, gives talks at trade shows, universities, or appears on radio and television. It's not the fame and glory (there isn't much anyhow). No, it's something entirely different. more>>

Are There Any Evil Distros?

If you take a gander at the number of Linux distributions listed at Distrowatch, you'll find there are tons of "forks" and "offshoots" from one distribution to another. With Linux, we have the freedom to do that, but I'm curious if there are any Linux flavors that are truly offensive to people. more>>

OpenOffice Drops a New Version, and the Heaps are Overflowing

Bugfixes have been big this week, with patches pouring forth from proprietary and Open Source projects alike. Drifting down the security stream is a new version of OpenOffice, pushing a critical security patch and perking things up with a barge-load of new features. more>>

Nokia is Preaching, But not Really to the Choir

Nobody likes to be told they need to learn how things work in their own back yard, but when the lesson is about being taken to the cleaners, it's doubly offensive. Such was the message from Nokia on Tuesday, as its Open Source head took the OS community to task for not letting corporate greed run roughshod over the principles upon which Open Source stands. more>>

Embedding a File in an Executable, aka Hello World, Version 5967

I recently had the need to embed a file in an executable. Since I'm working at the command line with gcc, et al and not with a fancy RAD tool that makes it all happen magically it wasn't immediately obvious to me how to make this happen. A bit of searching on the net found a hack to essentially cat it onto the end of the executable and then decipher where it was based on a bunch of information I didn't want to know about. Seemed like there ought to be a better way... more>>

Latest X Server Sees the Light of Day

Pulling things together for a stable software release isn't easy, and for many projects, it's a process that comes together when it's ready to come together. Other projects, however, have a more predictable cycle for their releases — and when the wheels come off the cycle, people take notice. more>>

Maxthon for Linux: Firefox Slayer?

I've been doing some research on browsers for an article about Firefox and have uncovered some pleasant surprises. more>>

RMS Trashes the Tube

Free Software Foundation founder Richard Stallman is no stranger to controversy, and probably never will be. He grabbed himself a fresh dose of it on Monday, attacking London's famed Underground over the potential for government tracking of citizens via the smartcard season pass. more>>

It Petaflops, and it's Linux

When it comes to supercomputing, flopping is a good thing. While geeks everywhere are gushing over gigahertz and terabytes, the uber-geeks at IBM, in conjunction with the nuclear overlords at Los Alamos, have been chasing the elusive petaflop — and they've finally got it, 6000ft² of it. more>>

Linux in Education: Concepts Not Applications

One of the biggest arguments used against Linux in grade school level education is that we aren't teaching kids to use the applications they'll use in the "real world". As the Technology Director for a K-12 school district, I've heard that argument many times. After all these years, I still don't buy it. more>>

EU Superwoman Gives Open Source a Boost

Neelie Kroes is a force to be reckoned with. As head of the European Union's antitrust division, she holds in her hands the future — and the financial health — of any company foolhardy enough to make monopolistic advances on the Old World. To top it off, she's now a vocal proponent of Open Source software. more>>

Red Hat Smooths Over Troubled Patent Waters

Red Hat is no stranger to the problem of software patents, and will likely continue to endure conflict with them long into the future. Two of its troubles, however, disappeared today, as Red Hat announced that it has settled patent-infringement lawsuits with DataTern Inc. and Firestar Software Inc. — the latter ongoing since 2006. more>>

More Fury from the SFLC

If the number of lawsuits filed defines the worth of a client, then the Software Freedom Law Center must be courting the developers of BusyBox with champagne and caviar. Having already filed and settled suits against a gaggle of GPL-infringing companies — including communications giant Verizon — they've now started a new round, targeting Bell Microproducts, Inc. and Super Micro Computer, Inc. more>>