Feeds:
Posts
Comments

LXer Article

In this week’s LXWR we have Canonical going on record about open core, Eight reasons to give the E17 a try, Oracle wants LibreOffice members to leave OOo council, The London Stock Exchange smashes the world record trade speed using Linux and with Ray Ozzie just the latest to walk out of Redmond, is this the beginning of the end for Microsoft? Enjoy!

Web browser speed test: Chrome, Firefox, IE9, Opera and Safari head-to-head: With Internet Explorer 9 being acclaimed as the fastest ever browser client from Microsoft, DaniWeb decided to put it to the test against Chrome, Firefox, Opera and Safari and see just how quick it really is in a real world test of web browsing speed.

Canonical, Ltd. Finally On Record: Seeking Open Core: I’ve written before about my deep skepticism regarding the true motives of Canonical, Ltd.’s advocacy and demand of for-profit corporate copyright assignment without promises to adhere to copyleft. I’ve often asked Canonical employees, including Jono Bacon, Amanda Brock, Jane Silber, Mark Shuttleworth himself, and — in the comments of this very blog post — Matt Asay to explain (a) why exactly they demand copyright assignment on their projects, rather than merely having contributors agree to the GNU GPL formally (like projects such as Linux do), and (b) why, having received a contributor’s copyright assignment, Canonical, Ltd. refuses to promise to keep the software copylefted and never proprietarize it (FSF, for example, has always done the latter in assignments). When I ask these questions of Canonical, Ltd. employees, they invariably artfully change the subject.

Fear and loathing and open core: Bradley M Kuhn published an interest blog post at the weekend explaining why he believes Canonical is about to go down the open core licensing route and heavily criticising the company for doing so. My take on the post is that it is the worst kind of Daily Mail-esque fear mongering and innuendo. Not only does Bradley lack any evidence for his claim, the evidence he presents completely undermines his argument and distracts attention from what could be a very important point about copyright assignment. The premise? Mark Shuttleworth has admitted that he plans to follow the open core licensing strategy with Canonical.

Eight Reasons to give the E17 Desktop a Try: During the three and a half years I have spent using Linux I have tried every different type of desktop under the sun and of them all Enlightenment’s E17 is my personal favorite. The following are a few reasons why it may be worth breaking out of your Gnome/KDE comfort zone to give E17 a try.

Oracle wants LibreOffice members to leave OOo council: A group of key OpenOffice.org (OOo) contributors and community members recently decided to fork the project and establish The Document Foundation (TDF) in order to drive forward community-driven development of the open source office suite. Oracle has responded to the move by asking several members of TDF to step down from their positions as representatives on the OOo community council.

London Stock Exchange smashes world record trade speed with Linux: The London Stock Exchange has said its new Linux-based system is delivering world record networking speed, with 126 microsecond trading times. The news comes ahead a major Linux-based switchover in twelve days, during which the open source system will replace Microsoft .Net technology on the group’s main stock exchange. The LSE had long been criticised on speed and reliability, grappling with trading speeds of several hundred microseconds.

Oracle issues first OpenOffice.org 3.3.0 release candidate: Two months after the first beta arrived, the OpenOffice.org developers have issued the first release candidate (RC1) of OpenOffice.org 3.3.0, the next release of the Oracle owned open source office suite. According to the OpenOffice.org Wiki, the RC1 development version will be followed by a second release candidate and a quality assurance (QA) build prior to the final product release. Dates for the RC2, QA and Final version have yet to be confirmed.

Beginning of the end for Microsoft?: Ray Ozzie, Microsoft’s chief software architect, is leaving the company. There are a couple of moments in Microsoft’s long history that will be remembered as when the company changed forever. One of those is, naturally, when Bill Gates handed over the reins. The other will be the day that Ray Ozzie, Microsoft’s chief software architect, leaves the building.

WordPress Founder on the Key to Open Source Success: As a 19-year-old college student in 2003, Matt Mullenweg developed what has become the largest self-hosted blogging tool on the web. Two years later, he founded Automattic, which runs the content management system for WordPress and a handful of other web tools. WordPress — still free and open source — is currently used by more than 12% of the top million websites (this one included). In a recent e-mail exchange, Mullenweg discussed the open source movement, the shifting personal web publishing world, and the future of WordPress.

Redmond Delivers Another Big POS: In 1996, Microsoft got together with a group of companies that included NCR, Epson, and Fujitisu to produce OLE for POS (abbreviated OPOS), which stands for Object Linking and Embedding for Point of Sale.

LXer Article

In the Roundup this week we have news of IBM deciding to back Oracle’s OpenJDK instead of Harmony, Phoronix releases the 2010 Linux graphics survey results, 5 mistakes Linux newcomers make and lastly John E. Dunn gets the crazy idea to ditch Windows for Ubuntu. Enjoy!

IBM backs Oracle against Apache and Google’s Android: Oracle is no longer totally isolated on Java — IBM now stands with the giant, in a move that potentially stymies Google’s Android. IBM said Monday that it’s putting its efforts into the OpenJDK project, run by Oracle, and switching away from the Apache Software Foundation’s (ASF’s) Project Harmony on Java Standard Edition (Java SE).

Was Taken For Granted, Now Forgotten: I found a computing treasure in a local Goodwill store three weeks ago: a book about System/360 assembly language. (Assembly language is the human-readable form of the concrete instructions carried out by the computer.) In earlier years, this would have been a wonderful surprise, but a previous find precludes that from happening… Last year, I found a special treat in the discount bin of a local grocery store: a movie, in Mongolian. In the rural Midwest USA, that is difficult to surpass that for surprise finds.

2010 Linux Graphics Survey Results: Last month we carried out our fourth annual Linux Graphics Survey in which we sought feedback from the Linux community about the most common graphics drivers and hardware in use, what display/GPU-related features desktop users are most interested in, and collect other metrics to aide developers.

Linux Gaming: Wine vs. Cedega vs. CrossOver Games: In previous posts, I have highlighted some of the outstanding new native Linux games that are coming out soon or have been out but may not be well known. For many Linux gamers, however, the pool of native Linux games is still too small. As most already know, it is possible to play some Windows games in Linux using Wine. Additionally, there are two prominent commercial spin-offs of Wine that are both designed specifically for gaming: Cedega and CrossOver Games. At one time, there was little difference between the three, other than the graphical configuration interfaces

Top 5 mistakes by Linux first-timers: With the arrival of Ubuntu 10.10, the list of reasons to try Linux for your business just got a little longer. The free and open source operating system is now more user-friendly than it’s ever been before while still offering the many security and other advantages it has over its competitors. If you’re among the legions of new Linux users out there, congratulations on making a smart move! Now that you’re on your way to a lifetime of freedom from high costs, vendor lock-in, constant malware attacks, and the many other disadvantages associated with Windows and Mac OS X, you should be aware of some of the classic mistakes Linux newcomers sometimes make.

Here’s a crazy security idea – ditch Windows for Ubuntu 10.10 Linux: After some days with the latest Ubuntu Linux desktop release, I was planning to devote a few graphs to extolling its many virtues. This is not a hard exercise because Ubuntu 10.10 is exemplary, about as good as it gets at doing the main things desktop operating systems were originally invented to do. It’s refined, uncluttered, comes with plenty of apps for most people and, most of all, it’s stable and fast. It runs happily in 1GB of RAM, something no version of Windows has done since the obsolete XP. There’s even a netbook edition with larger icons.

Is Linux Gaining share at Windows Expense? Maybe, Maybe not: The study also doesn’t shed much light on potential hybrid deployments where Linux is deployed alongside Windows and Unix. “We didn’t ask that question exactly,” McPherson said. “I bet you are correct that many would be hybrid, and that would be good to ask next time.”

KDE 4 vs. GNOME 3: An Early Comparison: How will GNOME 3 compare to KDE 4? The picture is still emerging, since GNOME 3’s official release is still months away. However, with GNOME Shell available as a preview in the latest GNOME releases, a general outline is starting to be visible. Of course, some elements cannot be compared yet. It would be unfair, for instance, to compare panels in any detail, because in the previews GNOME Shell’s panel has neither applets nor configurations. Nor, for that matter, can much be said yet about the upcoming KDE 4.6, which should be the latest version when GNOME 3.0 is released.

LXer Article

Some of the big stories this week included Steve Ballmer saying Android isn’t free, Bruce Byfield talks about Ubuntu’s real contribution to FOSS, Google makes aggressive counterclaims in the Oracle suit, Glyn Moody asks; Is Microsoft running out of steam? and last but not least Scott Charney, a Microsoft VP says that infected PCs should be banned from the internet. You have to read it to believe it. Enjoy!

Fork You, Oracle!: The open source community viscerally reacts to Oracle’s acquisition of Sun. Well it finally happened, as we all knew it would. Oracle bought Sun and promptly pissed off a lot of people with its heavy-handed ways. Anybody who has followed Oracle’s past antics shouldn’t be surprised by its behavior since acquiring OpenOffice, nor the reaction from the open source community which can be simply summed up as follows:Ballmer: Android ain’t free. Microsoft gets paid.: On the back of the news that Microsoft (MSFT) is suing Motorola (MOT) for patent infringments related to Android, Steve Ballmer tells the Wall Street Journal that HTC is paying a license fee for its use of Android…and that other Android manufactures may be forced to do the same.

The OpenOffice fork is officially here: It’s not that Oracle wishes ill of The Document Foundation and its take on OpenOffice, LibreOffice. Oracle just isn’t going to be having anything to do with it. When The Document Foundation released the beta of LibreOffice, the group wanted to speed up the rate of changes to the notoriously slow OpenOffice office suite software project and make significant improvements to OpenOffice, such as adding Microsoft OpenXML format compatibility to the program. This suggestion received support from all the major open-source and Linux powers: Red Hat, Novell, and Ubuntu. Even Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu, announced that they’d place LibreOffice in next spring’s update of Ubuntu.

Ubuntu’s Real Contribution to Free Software: Reactions to Ubuntu are rarely balanced. Too often, people love or hate it so extravagantly that the opinions negate themselves. Often, the reactions are so extreme that a fair assessment of the popular distribution is difficult. Add some genuine mis-steps, and the assessment seems almost impossible. So exactly what does Ubuntu contribute to free software? The answer, I think, is different from what those in either extreme seem to believe.

Google Answers Oracle, Counterclaims, and Moves to Dismiss Copyright Infringement Claim: Google has filed its Answer with Counterclaims to Oracle’s patent and copyright infringement complaint, and how! It’s a very aggressive and confident response to Oracle’s complaint. Google asks that Oracle’s complaint be dismissed, for a judgment in favor of all its counterclaims, for a declaratory judgment that Google has not infringed or contributed to any infringement of any of the patents, a declaration of the invalidity of all the Oracle patents, and a declaration that all Oracle’s claims are barred by laches, equitable estoppel and/or waiver, and unclean hands. It wants Oracle to have to pays its costs and expenses of this litigation, including Google’s attorneys’ fees and expert witness fees, asking for a judgment that this is an exceptional case warranting it.

Is Microsoft running out of steam?: People forget that the central purpose of patents is to encourage real innovation, not simply reward people for being the first to file for even obvious ideas with over-stretched patent offices that set incredibly low bars. The world of patents has become perverted in recent years: patents are seen as valuable things in themselves – the more the merrier – irrespective of whether they do, truly, promote innovation. Worse: in the world of software, they are actually brakes on that innovation, particularly as they begin to interact and form impenetrable patent thickets.

One Billion Dollars! Wait… I Mean One Billion Files!!!: The world is awash in data. This fact is putting more and more pressure on file systems to efficiently scale to handle increasingly large amounts of data. Recently, Ric Wheeler from Redhat experimented with putting 1 Billion files in a single file system to understand what problems/issues the Linux community might face in the future. Let’s see what happened…

Whither the weather? Linux CLI solutions: Command line weather app is example of why the cli is good. The command line is a great place to get weather information. Here, I discuss one cli-app for current conditions and forecasts, in the larger context of why you would ever want to use the command line anyway. There are several ways to use your computer to check the weather. One is to use the Nakob Weather Rock method. Suspend the computer using a rope from a tripod of sticks. If the computer is swaying, that means it is windy. If the computer is wet, that means it is raining.

Mozilla upsets net world order with Bing on Firefox: The Firefox 4 search toolbar will offer Microsoft Bing as an alternative to Google, as Mozilla takes another step towards its traditional nemesis — and apparently hedges its bets against its traditional sugar daddy. As Mozilla announced this morning with a blog post, the latest English-language version of Mozilla’s open source browser — due for release in November — will retain Google as the default search engine. But for the first time, Bing will be listed in the pull-down that lets you change the default. Google will be first on the menu. Yahoo! — now powered by Bing — will be second. And Bing will be third.

Are there too Many Consortia?: Companies that participate in hundreds of standard setting organizations (SSOs) often bemoan the continuing launch of more and more such organizations. Why, they are wont to ask, are so many new ones being formed all the time? And indeed, the aggregate participation costs for such companies in terms of membership dues and personnel are very high.

Sick PCs should be banned from the net says Microsoft: Virus-infected computers that pose a risk to other PCs should be blocked from the net, a senior researcher at software giant Microsoft suggests.

LXer Article

In this week’s LXWR OpenOffice.org gets liberated, a nice review of Linux Mint, The GNU Project celebrates its 27th birthday, Jono Bacon talks about how Ubuntu gets built, a case for Linux in schools, Rad Hat’s CEO makes it on Mad Money, Microsoft sues Motorola because of Android and a LXer Feature by our own Hans Kwint on the choices Windows and Linux users both have. Enjoy!

LibreOffice: OpenOffice.org Liberated: It has been a long time coming, but finally it happened: OpenOffice.org has been forked under the name of LibreOffice. The Document Foundation will oversee the development of LibreOffice. According to the press release, “The Document Foundation is the result of a collective effort by leading independent members of the former OpenOffice.org community, including several project leads and key members of the Community Council.” Red Hat, Canonical, Google, and Novell are among the backers of The Document Foundation and the new fork.

Goodbye OpenOffice. LibreOffice, Here I Come!: I was ecstatic today to hear the news that former members of the OpenOffice.org Foundation have decided to create a fork of OpenOffice called LibreOffice. This fork will be a democratic and community-driven project, free from the dubious motivations of Oracle Corporation. I suspected that someone would eventually do something like this, but I was not expecting it so soon.

Windows users face as many choices as Linux users: A while ago, Graham Morrison wrote: “The trouble with Linux: there’s too much choice”. Implicitly, the article refers to “more choice than with Windows”. The article led to reactions from Carla Schroeder, Caitlyn Martin, Alastair Otter and Ron Miller. While the articles provided for an interesting discussion, none of them addressed the fundamentals of Linux distributions and choice of desktop software in my opinion. Because from an objective point of view, Windows users face as many choices as Linux users do. But most Windows users are just not aware of all the choices they’re making.

5 Intriguing KDE Apps : The beauty of an open development platform is that anyone can take a stab at creating an application. KDE, which is built upon the Qt application and UI framework, is a shining example of this. A quick look at KDE-Apps.org reveals that new apps are added daily. I periodically browse through the latest KDE apps to see if anything stands out, and I found these five, some of which are in early development.

Linux Mint: the tastier Ubuntu: Launched in October of 2004, Linux Mint has rapidly emerged as one of the most popular desktop Linux distributions. In this review, LinuxTrends takes a look at the latest Linux Mint release and finds it to be preferable to Ubuntu (on which it’s based) in several significant ways.

Happy 27th Birthday GNU Project!: A hearty Happy 27th Birthday to the GNU Project! Here is a link to the original announcement of the GNU Project posted by Richard Stallman on September 27, 1983. Without the GNU project FOSS as we know it today would not exist. Thank You to everyone who works and has worked on the GNU project over the last 27 years. You have helped make the world a better place. We at LXer take our hats off to you.

How we build Ubuntu: Ubuntu is one of the most polished Linux distributions available, fusing the work of a global community of contributors who provide a diverse range of skills to make Ubuntu what it is. While we all enjoy the fruits of a new Ubuntu release every six months, many people have asked the team over the years how this wide range of contributors manage to come together to build a new Ubuntu release.

Linux in Schools: Why schools should have students use and learn Linux instead of some other OS. What computer operating system should students learn at school? Most schools use MS Windows or Mac, but a number have switched or are in the process of switching to Linux. For schools the advantages are lower costs, greater security, no viruses or spyware, easier upgrades and better reliability. Lastly, there are very few licensing hassles or concerns about pirated software.

Red Hat Linux is Mad Money: Over the years, I’ve heard a lot of different people try and explain the economic proposition that open source and Linux offers. One of the best such explanations I’ve ever heard came on CNBC’s Mad Money show this week during which host Jim Cramer was interviewing Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst. With Red Hat, Cramer noted that it is a disruptive force and that’s what makes it attractive. His view is that in tech, disruptive forces are the most valuable types of companies.

Microsoft sues Motorola over patents, citing Android phones: Microsoft has filed suit against Motorola, alleging that the mobile phone maker’s Android-based smartphones violate nine of the Redmond company’s patents. Motorola promised to “vigorously defend” against the allegations, citing the strength of its own intellectual property portfolio.

I have been playing drums for over twenty years now and I consider myself a pretty savvy buyer when it comes to drums and cymbals and all the things that go into building a drum kit out of something other than felt and cardboard. That said I just want to put out a word of caution for those of you who ‘beat the skins’ like me, but may not be the most mechanically inclined. Like me.

I have had many people compliment me on my drum kits over the years and it is a testament to the level of OCD that I therapeutically release upon them. I like my drum kit to look as good as it sounds and I have been lucky enough to find cymbals, drums and such for a lot less than the retail they usually go for. On occasion though I have to do some upkeep on them and I have always gladly taken to such things as they come up. But not being very mechanically inclined as I am has brought with it some challenges to say the least. All I know is that I don’t mind the thought of dying while playing my drums, I just don’t want to die while fixing them..;-)

I know some of you must be thinking; “So what are you getting at Scott?” Good question..

I have a double bass drum pedal on my kit so I can play double bass stuff without having to lug around an entire second bass drum just to do it. It makes my kit fit on a lot more stages and is more visually pleasing because you can actually see me behind my kit instead of being hidden behind a wall of drums. The pedal I have I got used for $75 bucks which was a great deal because they retail for at least three times that amount.

I have had the pedal for several years now and the springs that make the pedal come back off the head when you are playing I had noticed were not as strong as they once were. I had adjusted them as far as I could and there was no more room and I was having to bury my foot into the pedal just to get the thing to do what I wanted. So I got the great idea to replace them. Easy right? Riiiight..

I was alright with taking them off the pedal and such and not breaking or killing anything in the vicinity. I went to the music store I frequent and asked if they had replacements and they referred me to my choice of hardware store. I was amazed for some reason to think that the guys at the music store would not be able to help me. Am I the only person who has ever wanted to replace the springs on his bass drum pedal?

It gets better..

So I take the springs with me to an ACE hardware near my house and a nice older lady helps me find springs that are roughly the same size so they will fit in the area of the pedal for them and to make things even better they are at least two or three times stronger than the ones I was replacing. Awesome I thought, I will not have to adjust them all the way out, I’ll have some ‘wiggle room’ and it should leave me room to adjust them later if I wish. I buy them and rush home to install them and get cracking on learning some new songs for a band I am trying out for next week.

I installed them easy as pie, they are stronger just l like I thought and the pedal feels better than brand new. I am doing all kinds of cool double bass fills I haven’t been able to do for some time and having a grand ole’ time…

All of a sudden, PING!

I instinctively duck out of the way as one of the connectors that holds the spring to the pedal fulcrum snaps and ricochets off the ceiling above my head, off the floor tom, back off the ceiling, off my snare and then veers to bounce off the far wall of the room and disappear into thin air never to be found. If it had hit me I am certain that I either would have died or had quite the scar to wear proudly for the rest of my life. I wasn’t sure if I needed a drink, or a depends..

Note to self; If your going to replace springs that are a lot stronger than the ones you had, you should replace the connectors too. Oh and your shorts in case you poop in them from the scare it gives you.

Needless to say I went back to the hardware store and got some small plant hangers made out of real steel that I then bent slightly to fit and son of a gun if my pedal is not working fantastically and I am alive to tell the tale of how I almost killed myself doing what I love..

LXer Article

Could things be more exciting in the the world of FOSS right now? Yes it could, but let’s not be too hasty..

Oracle buys Sun and proceeds to use its patent portfolio to sue Google for infringement. Openoffice.org is going to have to split off or separate itself from Oracle somehow or change its licensing to remain free. Paul Allen unloads a patent Gatling Gun on every big name is the Tech industry. Is it going to be Red Hat or VMware that will take over the ailing Novell? Mandriva has broken into pieces. I’ll keep going if you let me..

It seems that the SCO trial has finally come to an end but even in the settling of the dust the lawyers can’t stop filing motions. The Oracle-Sun deal looks to be the next long term big story in FOSS I believe. The possible implications for FOSS with Oracle now owning one of the most extensive technology patent portfolios outside of IBM mean that there are more exciting times ahead, if that is what you want to call it.

All the while Microsoft still puts out tasty pieces of FUD every so often and I have come to find it reassuring in its consistency. But again Oracle could easily displace Microsoft as the Darth Vader of FOSS if they decide to go on the offensive with their patents, which looks likely to me. Larry Ellison is certainly tall enough for the part..

Ubuntu continues to grow, deepen its impact and cement its status as “The other word for Linux” to those who probably have no idea what FOSS is but are ten times more likely to have heard the word Ubuntu before Linux. I say that because I have been the person talking about Linux and/or Free and Open Source Software with someone for their very first time, many many times. I have seen how in the last several years Ubuntu has permeated the tech industry, just in name alone most of the time, many people having heard of it but not knowing exactly what it is. It is truly amazing.

It has looked to me like the tide continues to rise in the world of FOSS and as such its visibility does too. Things have continued to change at an ever quickening pace since my time managing our newswire. In the past decade alone Linux and FOSS have gone from their stone age to the space age. Could it be that FOSS is growing up too fast for its own good? Much like in the 19th century American West? Are we getting too big for our own britches?

Something I am starting to see as well are the beginnings of the far-reaching effects of Open Source ideals in communication and philosophy, which have the possibility of positively touching everyone on the planet. I can only imagine what the impact of FOSS on human society will look like in the next 20 or 30 years. I have started to see these things and ask myself these questions recently and I wonder what others would say in response to them. So I’m asking, what do you think?

LXer Article

The big stories to hit our newswire this week raised some questions it seems. We have Joe Brockmeier asking why e-mail is still stuck in the 1990’s, who is in the running to buy Novell, could it be VMWare or possibly even Red Hat? Steve Rosenberg is intrigued by the latest Linux Mint, a review of TinyCore 3.0, Linux applications with peculiar names, the bully in the Linux schoolyard and to wrap things up we have some Microsoft FUD on how Android is not really free. Enjoy!

TinyCore Linux 3.0: Graphical Linux distribution under 11 Megabyte: If you thought Damn Small Linux or Puppy Linux is small, hold your breath. Tiny Core Linux is a minimalistic GNU/Linux distribution based on Linux kernel 2.6, it comes with graphical environment and provides facility to download and install applications from the Internet and it fits into 10MB of ISO file.

Here is the New Open Source: A recent column in The H Open posed a question: ‘The “best open source software for business” list contains almost exclusively well-known contributors. Is there no more new open source?’ It’s an important issue, because it picks up on a persistent line of criticism that goes all the way back to the famous 1998 Halloween Document, an internal Microsoft strategy report that offered perhaps the first deep glimpse into the company’s thinking about open source..

Court Upholds End-User License Agreements: The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recently ruled that End-User License Agreements (EULAs) are absolutely binding, thereby making resale, redistribution, modifications and any other terms forbidden within the agreement illegal.

Why is Linux Email Stuck in the 90s?: Email, love it or loathe it, there’s no getting away from it. On an average day I process hundreds of emails, but haven’t yet found an open source mail user agent (MUA) that I really like. Ten years ago this wasn’t surprising, but today? Why aren’t open source mailers keeping up with the rest of the Linux desktop, and being blown away by Gmail?

The Bully In The Linux Schoolyard: There are plenty of people who have offered explanations for why Linux thrives anonymously on servers and as Android on smartphones but lags behind on the desktop. Though reasons abound, at least one significant one is a self-inflicted wound: the Terminal Bully.

First impressions of Linux Mint Debian — I’m more than a little intrigued: Linux Mint, long known as a multimedia-ready spin on Ubuntu, has gone deeper and released a Mint distro based not on Ubuntu but on Debian Testing, and my first impressions running the system from the live DVD is that this is a game-changer in the Linux world.

Novell Sale: VMware Among the Bidders?: It sounds like Novell is nearing a deal to sell itself. Newspaper and wire report rumors suggest VMware is bidding to buy Novell’s SUSE Linux business, with another buyer to potentially acquire Novell’s other businesses. Here’s the speculation plus insights from The VAR Guy.

Red Hat in the market for Novell?: Red Hat, Inc. was named by the Wall Street Journal yesterday to be one of the potential purchasers of Novell, which the New York Post announced would sell itself in two parts; Linux will go to a strategic buyer and the remainder will be sold to private equity, Jefferies reports. The other companies mentioned were VMware, Oracle, and EMC.

Linux Applications With Peculiar Names: I’m sure most of us were put before in the situation of discovering a new great application, but had to stop and try to figure out how to actually read and spell its name letter by letter.

Linux and Too Many Choices: A perennial whinge is “Linux and FOSS have too many choices! It’s confusing and scary!” So what’s the answer, a single global dictator? It must be the season for recycled anti-Linux whinges, because in the past few weeks I have had the pleasure of wading through a flurry of stories about Linux has too many choices, Linux is not ready for prime time, Linux is too expensive just like proprietary software, and FOSS is amateur hour and all insecure. We’ve heard it all before.

Microsoft says patent-infringing Android isn’t really free: Google’s open source Android operating system is not as free as it seems, Microsoft argues, because it infringes a number of patents. When asked whether open source models created problems for vendors with licensed software, the software giant went on the offensive. “It does infringe on a bunch of patents, and there’s a cost associated with that,” Tivanka Ellawala, Microsoft financial officer told MarketWatch. “So there’s a… cost associated with Android that doesn’t make it free.”