OPEN SOURCE content
(Also see Music: Free Music Book Page 1 )
2016 Free Software Foundation's 30th anniversary
DEFINITION of Open Source
Nobody owns the code with "open source" software.
Micky Metts [ Ringleader on the Educational CyberPlayGround ] says use free software like Drupal for community building – networking, privacy, encryption and autonomy. What the government first did in the 1970s was the most free of a free software movement you could have.
Richard Matthew Stallman (born March 16, 1953), often known by his initials,rms, is a software freedom activist and computer programmer. He campaigns for software to be distributed in a manner such that its users receive the freedoms to use, study, distribute and modify that software. Software that ensures these freedoms (on receipt) is termed free software. He is best known for launching the GNU Project, founding the Free Software Foundation, developing the GNU Compiler Collection and GNU Emacs, and writing the GNU General Public License.
Stallman launched the GNU Project in September 1983 to create a Unix-like computer operating system composed entirely of free software. With this, he also launched the free software movement. He has been the GNU project's lead architect and organizer, and developed a number of pieces of widely used GNU software including, among others, the GNU Compiler Collection, the GNU Debugger and the GNU Emacs text editor. In October 1985  he founded the Free Software Foundation.
Stallman pioneered the concept of copyleft, which uses the principles of copyright law to preserve the right to use, modify and distribute free software, and is the main author of free software licenses which describe those terms, most notably the GNU General Public License (GPL), the most widely used free software license.
WHY USE OPEN SOURCE
Why Open Source is used as an alternative to buying Microsoft products.
Learn how to defend against the BSA Business Software Alliance dirty tricks that bully the small business owner in a rigged game that is stacked against you.
Video/audio tools you can use to record
Here are some free software tools to record
Freedom and community are the moral goals of software freedom.
Linus Torvalds wrote the GNU/Linux operating system code. You can still find the original kernal for download. The complete source code of many Linux kernel versions dating back to 1991 is freely downloadable from www.kernel.org; you can download the very first release (or view the release notes), the first semi-stable version (release notes), or the 1.0 release.
Eric Raymond Advocate
CopyLeft.net is a sort-of-profit company that supports free and open source software by donating a large portion of each sale to various organizations that develop or support the development of free software.
The Software Freedom Law Center
We provide legal representation and other law-related services to protect and advance Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). Founded in 2005, the Center now represents many of the most important and well-established free software and open source projects.
Open Source Initiative
(OSI) is a non-profit corporation dedicated to managing and promoting the Open Source Definition for the good of the community, specifically through the OSI Certified Open Source Software certification mark and program. We also make copies of approved open source licenses. The basic idea behind open source is very simple: When programmers can read, redistribute, and modify the source code for a piece of software, the software evolves.The Open Source movement is grounded in the computer industry. If the "free" model of intellectual property has more advantages than the proprietary model it will change all the rules for everything from publishing to you name it."Now that Unisys is shaking down websites that use GIFs for a $5000 license fee, you should burn all your GIFs too." ~ Don and The Cathedral and the Bazaar
OPEN ACCESS EDUCATIONAL CONTENT
forairan/PhpJava.java This snippet of code is syntactically valid in both PHP and Java, and produces the same output in both.
https://github.com/s-rah/onionscan by https://twitter.com/SarahJamieLewis
The purpose of this tool is to make you a better onion service provider. You owe it to yourself and your users to ensure that attackers cannot easily exploit and deanonymize.
Access To Knowledge Towards offering the appropriate scientific platform for researchers and scientists in Egypt and the region, the BA has recently joined hands with 11 participants representing European and Middle Eastern countries in the project “Linking Scientific Computing in Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean” (LinkSCEEM). LinkSCEEM is an EU funded initiative which targets building scientific and technological bridges between Europe and the Middle East and to advance computation-based scientific research, such as climate change, bioinformatics, data mining, cloud computing, among others. Through LinkSCEEM, the BA avails its Supercomputer as well as its visualization facility (VISTA) as an efficient platform for advancing science and technology in the region.
1/2012 The ramifications of the Research Works Act are worldwide and it must not be allowed to pass. The Research Works Act aims to make it illegal to require researchers to make their work publicly available. This Bill is a direct counter to the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) policy, which states that the results of publicly-funded research must be made open access in the PubMed Central repository within a year of publication. The Bill also seeks to prohibit federal agencies from including such conditions in their grants in the future. Open access funding rules such as those of the NIH, Wellcome Trust, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and others simply allow the taxpayer – who has paid for the research and the majority of the publishing process – to have access to the findings of that research. But publishers claim that open access is hurting their profit margin. So it’s not surprising that the two Congress-people putting the Bill forward, Democrat Carolyn Maloney and Republican Darrell Issa, are recipients of substantial donations from the largest scholarly publishing company, Elsevier. It has been supported by the Association of American Publishers (AAP), which represents scholarly and professional publications.
Publicly funded research being undertaken by researchers who are often themselves (in Australia almost exclusively) also publicly funded, is written up and submitted to a publisher. The publisher sends it back out to the academic community to peer review the work, for no charge. Many of the editors of journals are also academics who again are doing the work gratis. The publisher then adds the journal design to the article and publishes it, charging disproportionally large subscription fees for access to the work. These fees are paid by university libraries, again, with public funding.
Transforming Scholarly Publishing through Open Access: A Bibliography is now available with links to many included works. All versions of the bibliography are available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.
OA XHTML: http://digital-scholarship.org/tsp/w/tsp.html
OA PDF: http://digital-scholarship.org/tsp/transforming.pdf
Low-Cost Paperback: http://digital-scholarship.org/tsp/transforming.htm
This bibliography presents over 1,100 selected English-language scholarly works useful in understanding the open access movement's efforts to provide free access to and unfettered use of scholarly literature. The bibliography primarily includes books and published journal articles.
"The Horizon Report," an annual guide to tech trends, comes out next week. And it's predicting a new technology king: open content. “Far more than a collection of free online course materials, the open-content movement is a response to the rising costs of education, the desire for access to learning in areas where such access is difficult, and an expression of student choice about when and how to learn,” the report says.
The Open Content Alliance, is making the material available to any search service. The Boston Public Library and the Smithsonian Institution, suggest that many in the academic and nonprofit world are intent on pursuing a vision of the Web as a global repository of knowledge that is free of business interests or restrictions. the Boston Library Consortium of 19 research and academic libraries in New England that includes the University of Connecticut and the University of Massachusetts, said it would work with the Open Content Alliance to begin digitizing the books among the libraries' 34 million volumes whose copyright had expired. The Library of Congress has a pilot program with Google to digitize some books. But in January, it announced a project with a more inclusive approach. With $2 million from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the library's first mass digitization effort will make 136,000 books accessible to any search engine through the Open Content Alliance. The library declined to comment on its future digitization plans. The Open Content Alliance is the brainchild of Brewster Kahle, the founder and director of the Internet Archive, which was created in 1996 with the aim of preserving copies of Web sites and other material. The group includes more than 80 libraries and research institutions, including the Smithsonian Institution.Open Content Alliance is a trademark of the Internet Archive.[source]
Open Access Week, Digital Scholarship released version one of the Institutional Repository Bibliography. This bibliography presents over 620 selected English-language articles, books, and other scholarly textual sources that are useful in understanding institutional repositories. Although institutional repositories intersect with a number of open access and scholarly communication topics, this bibliography only includes works that are primarily about institutional repositories. Most sources have been published between 2000 and the present; however, a limited number of key sourhttp://bit.ly/1tsW5sces published prior to 2000 are also included. Where possible, links are provided to e-prints in disciplinary archives and institutional repositories.
The OER (Open Educational Resources) Common is a database of open source content related to education. Usually sites like this are devoted either to K-12 or higher education resources — this one has both. From the front page you can browse by tag, subject matter, or grade level. Find college courses or K-12 lesson plans. Search lectures, labs, or syllabi that are open to adapt for your own use. Browse the Categories or Collections for what interests you. Many of the resources we point to are published using a Creative Commons license.
2016 OUR HEROINE
Alexandra Elbakyan, the developer of Sci-Hub a 27-year-old bioengineer turned Web programmer from Kazakhstan (who's living in Russia) is the developer of Sci-Hub, a Pirate Bay-like site for science. Free and searchable access "to most publishers, especially well-known ones." Search for it, download, and you're done. It's that easy.
Elbakyan, finds herself entwined in a US copyright and hacking lawsuit brought by one of the world's leading scientific publishers, New York-based Elsevier. That's the same publisher Swartz named in his 2008 "Guerilla Open Access Manifesto," a brief paper extolling the virtues of illegally freeing scientific research stuck behind the paywall.
What is really unethical is to restrict access to scientific information, and for what reason? To make money! Someone can argue that publishers need to pay for expenditures, however I see that research papers published more than 20 years ago are also behind paywalls; it is hard to believe that expenditures to publish these papers are still not covered by 2015.
RIP OUR HERO
Open Knowledge Activist
Aaron Swartz WAS a teenage writer, coder, and hacker. He was a finalist for the ArsDigita Prize for excellence in building non-commercial web sites at the age of 13. At 14 he co-authored the RSS 1.0 specification, now used by thousands of sites to notify their readers of updates. He's a member of the W3C's RDF Core Working Group which is developing the format for the Semantic Web and Metadata Advisor to the Creative Commons. He's also the author of rss2email, xmltramp, HTML diff, and html2text. [More...]
LAW & DISORDER / CIVILIZATION & DISCONTENTS “We’ve lost a fighter”: Hundreds gather to mourn Aaron Swartz "Pushed to his death by his government," lamented his father.
Here is an except from the speech given by Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman, Aaron Swartz's girlfriend, who is convinced that the US justice system led to his suicide. She says, "Aaron's death should radicalize us."
Open Library Project
"An interview with Aaron Swartz, creator of the "basic framework" of the new Open Library Project now sponsored by Internet Archive. His comment on existing bibliographic tools: "I can search an academic library or WorldCat, but the quality of data is pretty weak - you can get basic bibliographic info, but no reviews and weak search and a painful interface and most require a subscription." Read More Here"
The searchable indexes below expose public domain ebooks, open access digital repositories, Wikipedia articles, and miscellaneous human-cataloged Internet resources.
OpenLearn: Mathematics and Statistics
The Open University had long been dedicated to the proposition of providing high-quality educational materials for persons all over Britain and the world. They were one of the first universities to place such materials online, and their OpenLearn website has received high marks from many quarters. This particular section of materials on their site is devoted to providing instructional units in both math and science. Currently, the site contains about 30 different units, and visitors can stroll through these units and take in their materials at their leisure. The units include such titles as Modeling pollution in the Great Lakes, Exploring data: graphs and numerical summaries, and Using vectors to model.
LibriVox: free audiobooks
LibriVox volunteers record chapters of books in the public domain and release the audio files back onto the net. Our goal is to make all public domain books available as free audio books. We are a totally volunteer, open source, free content, public domain project.
Sakai is an online Collaboration and Learning Environment. Many users of Sakai deploy it to support teaching and learning, ad hoc group collaboration, support for portfolios and research collaboration.Sakai is a free and open source product that is built and maintained by the Sakai community. Sakai's development model is called "Community Source" because many of the developers creating Sakai are drawn from the "community" of organizations that have adopted and are using Sakai.
Open Social Networking
- Affelio "Affelio is open-source social networking software / architecture. It has following features: (1) distributed architecture (2) Internet-wide scalability, (3) Extensivity with opened Affelio API for developers, and (4) high custamizability with skins/templates."
- AstroSPACES "AstroSPACES is the world's first open source social networking solution. Coded from scratch, it is highly efficient and very easy to use."
- blogBOX "blogBOX is a free and open source social networking system written in PHP. Future versions will be written i Python/Django."
- Elgg is an open source social networking platform based around choice, flexibility and openness: a system that firmly places individuals at the centre of their activities. Your users have the freedom to incorporate all their favorite tools within one environment and showcase their content with as many or as few people as they choose, all within a social networking site that you control. Elgg represents a shift from aging, top-down classroom technologies like Blackboard to what e-learning practitioners call personal learning environments -- mashup spaces comprising del.icio.us feeds, blog posts, podcast widgets -- whatever resources students need to document, consume or communicate their learning across disciplines. "Elgg is an open source social networking platform developed for LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) which encompasses weblogging, file storage, RSS aggregation, personal profiles, FOAF functionality and more."
- FlightFeather: Social Networking Platform "FlightFeather's goal is "social networking for everyone". This means that anyone should have a chance to run a popular social networking site -- on minimal hardware, and without wasting bandwidth."
- FriendPortal - An Open Source Friendster "An open-source, Friendster-like social networking portal and news site written in PHP. Post and read news plus browse through contacts like you would in Friendster, Orkut, Tribe.net or Ringo with the knowledge that your personal information is safe."
- Geek Grep "GeekGrep is a Django based social-networking system designed to get geeks connected with each other. The main feature is a database of geek codes and the ability to search them. See our project web site for a design template of the future site."
- (GPL) Nikto is an Open Source web server scanner which performs comprehensive tests against web servers for multiple items, including over 3300 potentially dangerous files/CGIs, versions on over 625 servers, and version specific problems on over 230 servers. Scan items and plugins are frequently updated and can be automatically updated (if desired).
OPEN SOURCE TAX CREDIT
0pen source tax credit -- March 20, 2006
by Russ Nelson 1-315-323-1241 crynwr.com
Corporations can write-off their work developing software in many ways, and so can individuals.
I looked into this issue in my role as the executive director of the Public Software Fund. If you own copyright on a work, and you donate that work to a 501(c)(3), you can deduct the fair market value of that work. No changes are needed to tax law.
The difficulty here is that you need to determine the fair market value. You can pick a number from the air if you want. Or you can pay a professional for a valuation of the work that will stand up in tax court. There are people who will do this for a percentage of the value of the work. I expect, though, that they would be grumpy about valuing something worth less than, say, $100.
So what would a contribution to an existing open source project be worth?
Some Open Source licenses require that any change you actually use, you must publish as open source software. Other Open Source licenses require that you make freely copyable and include source of any code you publish. Yet other Open Source licenses allow you to distribute derived works under any license you want. How to value contributions?
It seems to me arguable that you can deduct whatever you could sell the first copy for. When Cygnus Software was an independent company, they would sell the first copy of a gcc port for six or seven figures.
A comparable price would be the price of full ownership of any comparable piece of software.
A less reliable valuation would be the salary of someone paid to do a comparable work-for-hire. Since the employer owns the copyright (for work done in the USA) absent any agreement, the employer is in effect buying the copyright. It's less reliable because the employer is buying the copyright in advance. They're taking a risk that the employee will write junk, and hoping they'll write a masterpiece. That's where the unreliability of this valuation comes from. Makes any one valuation less arguably correct.
Does that get anybody to thinking about filing revised federal income taxes for the past three years based on the value of software whose copyright you assigned?
 To be legally donated, the copyright must be assigned, in writing.
 By which I mean OSI Approved Open Source licenses.
 The IRS will not impose a penalty if you can make a reasonable argument for a deduction even if the deduction is disallowed on audit. They expect you to deduct aggressively. You would then have to pay interest and the avoided taxes.
 You can write off up to half your income, but only half your income. Don't think you'll get away without paying any taxes.
OPEN SOURCE FREE CLASSROOM COURSEWARE TOOLS
FREE JOURNALS - DOAJ Directory of Open Access Journals
- OMICS International through its Open Access Initiative is committed to make genuine and reliable contributions to the scientific community.
The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health is pleased to welcome you to the initial phase of its pilot OpenCourseWare (OCW) project, providing free and open access to the School's most popular courses to students, self learners, and educators anywhere in the world.
MIT's OpenCourseWare: A free and open educational resource for faculty, students, and self-learners around the world. OCW supports MIT's mission to advance knowledge and education, and serve the world in the 21st century. It is true to MIT's values of excellence, innovation, and leadership.
CADDIE.NET Course Server Portal, http://ken.mit.edu/DevShell/desktopDefault.aspx?tabindex=0&tabid=301 The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has built a portal-development application designed to help institutions set up and manage distance-education programs. Called Caddie.net, the software, which can be downloaded free, allows users to build various portals for the different aspects of a distance-education program. Portals can be built, for example, for registration, course management, or online testing. the application is similar to those sold by Blackboard or WebCT. that you can control yourself. Developed to be highly scalable across institutions and countries, it can support an unlimited number of courses and students. The CADDIE Collaborative Architectures for a Distributed Instructional Environment is designed to take advantage of the wide range of collaboration technology available on today's highly calable Web Platforms, including messenger, voice over IP and real time and streaming video.
Moodle 1.7 http://moodle.org/
The word moodle is an acronym for "modular object-oriented dynamic learning environment", which is quite a mouthful. What Scout Report readers should know is that Moodle 1.7 is a tremendously helpful opens-source e-learning platform. With Moodle, educators can create a wide range of online courses with features that include forums, quizzes, blogs, wikis, chat rooms, and surveys.
Nicenet - Internet Classroom Assistant
Open Text Summarizer - "The Open Text Summarizer is an open source tool for summarizing texts. The program reads a text and decides which sentences are important and which are not. OTS is both a library and a command line tool. Word processors such as AbiWord and KWord can link to the library and summarize documents while the command line tool lets you summarize text on the console. The program can either print the summarized text as text or HTML. If HTML, the important sentences are highlighted. The program is multi lingual and works with UTF-8 encoding."
HelpMaker is an application to create help files without an expensive word-processor, without having the manage multiple files. Writing help files is called help authoring. You can make whole help files using HelpMaker. HelpMaker makes WinHelp, RTF, HTML-Help, Websites, PDF files. HelpMaker has no limitations, no time-outs, no nags, no adware, no banner ads and no spyware. It is 100% free. Other than this product, there is no free help authoring tool for RTF, WinHelp, HTML-Help, WebHelp and PDF.
Free software that can be used to teach computer science concepts.
- Scratch for middle school students. Scratch is a drag-and-drop environment that kids can use to create 2D animations and games.
- Alice for High school students. drag-and-drop environments for creating 3D movies and games. Alice and Scratch do not require you to be the administrator to install. You can simply download these and copy them to the student's home directory.
- Squeak is a "media authoring tool"
Create Online Activities and Games with Squeak It's a free, open-source, multimedia programming environment for kids, educators and everyone who is interested in developing games, simulations, or just have fun exploring the power of computers. It works on PCs, Macs and linux-based machines. Software that you can download to your computer and then use to create your own media or share and play with others.
This is an open source replacement for Microsoft Office. It includes a word processor (to replace Word), spreadsheet (Excel), presentation software (PowerPoint) and database (Access). It will open up Microsoft Office files and save to Microsoft Office formats (except for the database part, which is a bit more complicated than Access ... at least for me!). It also has some cool features that Office doesn't have, like saving Word documents as PDF files or saving PowerPoint presentations as Flash files. OpenOffice doesn't contain a Microsoft Outlook equivalent. You'll need to look elsewhere for a program to manage e-mail. Mozilla's free Thunderbird offers many of the same e-mail features as Outlook.
Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird (http://www.mozilla.org/)
Web browser (Firefox) and e-mail client (Thunderbird) that are both open source. Supposedly they are much more secure than Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Outlook Express, although they both have their own security issues. But they also have some neat features that Microsoft's products don't.
Lightning is a free calendar add-on for Thunderbird. Or download Sunbird. It provides the same features as Lightning in a free standalone program.
A word processor is great for creating general documents. But if your documents are professionally printed, you need a desktop-publishing program. Scribus is much like Microsoft Publisher or Adobe InDesign.
Google Earth (http://earth.google.com/)
Many of you have probably seen or heard of this one. A GREAT tool for viewing satellite images of the world. I have it on my laptop and will show it to my students on the LCD projector once in a while ... they LOVE it.
Open source space simulation ("virtual planetarium") software.
SciPy (pronounced "Sigh Pie") is open-source software for mathematics, science, and engineering. It is also the name of a very popular conference on scientific programming with Python. The core library is NumPy which provides convenient and fast N-dimensional array manipulation. The SciPy library is built to work with NumPy arrays, and provides many user-friendly and efficient numerical routines such as routines for numerical integration and optimization.
Freeware ZIP file utility ... can archive files in ZIP format, and expand ZIP files as well. VERY good user interface, and lots of features. The suite version includes some other neat tools, too, like FTP software and a password manager.
PDF converter. Basically it adds a printer to your system called PrimoPDF ... when you "print" to this printer, it actually creates a PDF file. So in theory, it can be used with any program to create free PDF files.
The OpenCD http://www.theopencd.org/ creates a CD of open source and freeware programs. In addition to the programs, the CD includes a bootable version of the Linux operating system (which can also be installed if you want to use Linux permanently). You can download the entire CD image, which can then be burned easily onto a CD, or you can download each program individually. .
The Open Source Development Labs (OSDL) offers free public patent library database of patents donated to the open source community. The library is a catalogue of patents whose owners have agreed not to exert any control over the technologies as long as they are used to improve the open source community. The OSDL offers a clearinghouse for information about patents, where they came from, what they do, and under what conditions they can be used. The site should free open source developers from much of the uncertainty they have when using patented technologies in their development efforts.
Rename* http://www.1-4a.com/rename/ file renamer takes all of those digital camera files with the same name and allows you to rename them to something that makes sense. It also fits on a floppy and does not need to be installed.
Open source bulletin board package.
It's very easy to use and the interface is intuitive and user-friendly.
- Software Downloads
- Region free Tools: 2 tools to make your Hollywood Plus & Software DVD Player region free
- Source codes: source codes for all the open source tools you can find on this page
Open Source development website, with Open Source code and applications, provides free services to Open Source developers, including project hosting, version control, bug and issue tracking, project management, backups and archives, and communication and collaboration resources.
Manhattan Virtual Classroom
is a password protected, web-based virtual classroom system that includes a variety of discussion groups, live chat, areas for the teacher to post the syllabus and other handouts and notices, a module for organizing online assignments, a grades module, and a unique, web-based email system open only to students in the class. Developed at Western New England College, Manhattan is free, and is released under the GNU General Public License.
FormMail is a generic HTML form to e-mail gateway that parses the results of any form and sends them to the specified users. This script has many formatting and operational options, most of which can be specified within each form, meaning you don't need programming knowledge or multiple scripts for multiple forms.
CODEWEAVERS RUNS OFFICE WITHOUT WINDOWS 3/02
Codeweavers unveiled software that allows corporate users to run Microsoft Office and Lotus Notes without a Windows operating system. The product, called CrossOver Office, eliminates the need for a Windows operating systems license as well as a Windows emulator which, traditionally, have tended to weigh down the speed and performance of desktop applications. Crossover uses Wine. 1.1.2. Emulation versus Native Linking Wine is a UNIX implementation of the win32 libraries, written from scratch by hundreds of volunteer developers and released under an open source license. Anyone can download and read through the source code, and fix bugs that arise. The Wine community is full of richly talented programmers who have spent thousands of hours of personal time on improving Wine so that it works well with the win32 Applications Programming Interface (API), and keeps pace with new developments from Microsoft. Wine can run applications in two discrete ways: as pre-compiled Windows binaries, or as natively compiled X11 (X Window System) applications. The former method uses **emulation** to connect a Windows application to the Wine libraries. You can run your Windows application directly with the **emulator**, by installing through Wine or by simply copying the Windows executables onto your Linux system. The other way to run Windows applications with Wine requires that you have the source code for the application. Instead of compiling it with native Windows compilers, you can compile it with a native Linux compiler -- gcc for example -- and link in the Wine Libraries as you would with any other native UNIX application. These natively linked applications are referred to as Winelib applications. The Wine Users Guide will focus on running precompiled Windows applications using the Wine **emulator**.
|The Linux home page||OpenSource Schools|
|Gnutella is FREE||Redhat|
|Linux How To's||CoffeeCup HTML Editor for Linux|
|Video Editing Software|
|Bringing Video to Linux||Enigmail, a GnuPG "plugin" for Mozilla 0.9.9 release|
Ubuntu manifesto: Great software should be available free of charge and should be usable by people in their own language regardless of disability. Also, people should be able to customize and alter their software in ways they deem fit.
Get started with linux by downloading Ubuntu
Get Involved with the Ubuntu women
irc @ irc.linuschix.org #linuxchix
If you have a slow old computer then use the light version of Ubuntu called Kubuntu
After you install unbuntu then install sun java.
Filter software for schools -
Linux combination of Squid and SquidGuard. They are both free, come with extensive "blacklist" updates and are fully customizable to allow or deny sites that are not correctly filtered in the pre-configured blacklists.
GIMP is a powerful open source image-editing program that is comparable to PhotoShop.
Project "FABULA PATWA" questions? ask Robert PhilipsThis is the first release of fabulapatwa which is the mozilla variant of the bilingual courseware product of the European Union.
FABULA project involving principal project partners in the fields of bilingual education and literacy, human-computer interaction, interface design, typography and software development from the University of Reading and the University of Brighton in the United Kingdom and DTP Workshop in Dublin, Eire. Integral to the project has been the close participation of Fabula's evaluation partners, educational institutions specialising in the support of bilingual learning and culture in the Basque Country, Catalonia, Friesland, Ireland and Wales. Fabula is funded by the European Commission as part of the Educational Multimedia Taskforce. Fabula is an easy-to-use program which allows children and teachers to create their own bilingual, multimedia storybooks complete with digital photos. FABULA http://fabula.xmlw.ie/
The source code is not available at this time, but if you interest in reviving it and you want more information contact and .
Bilingual stories help children learn other languages by using words, sounds and pictures to explore the similarities and differences. Fabula can be used to create stories in any pair of languages, but the five nation team which worked to develop this package – teachers, children, software engineers, translators and researchers – is particularly interested in the lesser used languages of Europe, such as Welsh, Irish, Catalan, Basque and Frisian. The Fabula software was created using Mozilla. The Maker is built upon the Editor and is used to create stories. The Reader is built on top of the Browser and is used for viewing the stories.
open source projects
Dreamwidth (http://wiki.dwscoalition.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page)blogging software. Community is around 75% women. (Perl)
- Archive Of Our Own (http://archiveofourown.org/ ) fanfiction management software. Community is >90% women (Ruby on Rails)
- GnuCash (http://gnucash.org ) accounting software has a thriving, friendly community? (C and Scheme)
- Plover Steno (http://stenoknight.com/wiki/Main_Page )- world's first open source stenography project. Founded by a woman. (Python)
- Growstuff (http://wiki.growstuff.org/) centers around managing in-real-life food gardens. (Ruby on Rails)
- Also check out your local hackerspace, if there is one:
http://hackerspaces.org . There's lots of intersection between
hackerspaces and the FOSS community.
Open Source Security
Better Protection at a Lower Cost
In this opinion piece, Steve Schlesinger argues that open-source software offers enhanced security over proprietary commercial solutions. This appears counter intuitive at first glance, as open-source software allows anyone the ability to see every line of code, including the vulnerabilities. Schlesinger contends that open-source software is more affordable, more secure, and it's flaws are discovered and fixed faster. For example, a SecurityPortal study published in January 2000 found that open-source vendor averaged just over 11 days to patch bugs found in its operating system software. By contrast, Microsoft averaged 16 days and Sun Microsystems took nearly three months to patch their software. Open-source software also benefits from public peer review. And finally, open-source projects tend to develop strong communities of support, which lowers the cost and response time of support.
Defense Department Issues Open Source Policy By Thor Olavsrud June 3, 2003
The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) last week distributed a memo putting open source software on a level playing field with proprietary software when it comes to use within the department, though the memo also warned that those using open source software (OSS) must comply with "lawful licensing requirements" and be aware of what those licenses entail.
NSA Mimics Google, Annoys Senate July 17, 2012
In 2008, a team of software coders inside the National Security Agency started reverse-engineering the database that ran Google. They closely followed the Google research paper describing BigTable — the sweeping database that underpinned many of the Google’s online services, running across tens of thousands of computer servers — but they also went a little further. In rebuilding this massive database, they beefed up the security. After all, this was the NSA. Like Google, the agency needed a way of storing and retrieving massive amounts of data across an army of servers, but it also needed extra tools for protecting all that data from prying eyes. They added “cell level” software controls that could separate various classifications of data, ensuring that each user could only access the information they were authorized to access. It was akey part of the NSA’s effort to improve the security of its own networks.
But the NSA also saw the database as something that could improve security across the federal government — and beyond. Last September, the agency open sourced its Google mimic, releasing the code as the Accumulo project. It’s a common open source story — except that the Senate Armed Services Committee wants to put the brakes on the project. In a bill recently introduced on Capitol Hill, the committee questions whether Accumulo runs afoul of a government policy that prevents federal agencies from building their own software when they have access to commercial alternatives. The bill could ban the Department of Defense from using the NSA’s database — and it could force the NSA to meld the project’s security tools with other open source projects that mimic Google’s BigTable.
The NSA, you see, is just one of many organizations that have open sourced code that seeks tomimic the Google infrastructure. Like other commercial outfits, the agency not only wants to share the database with other government organizations and companies, it aimed to improve the platform by encouraging other developers to contribute code. But when the government’s involved, there’s often a twist.
The U.S. government has a long history with open source software, but there are times when policy and politics bump up against efforts to freely share software code — just as they do in the corporate world. In recent years, the most famous example is NASA’s Nebula project, which overcame myriad bureaucratic hurdles before busting out of the space agency in a big way, seeding the popular OpenStack platform. That said, the Accumulo kerfuffle is a little different. In trying to determine whether Accumulo duplicates existing projects, the bill floated by the Senate Armed Services committee uses such specific language, some believe it could set a dangerous precedent for the use of other open source projects inside the federal government.
The NSA at ‘Internet Scale’
Originally called Cloudbase by the NSA, Accumulo is already used inside the agency, according to a speech given last fall by Gen. Keith Alexander, the director of the NSA. Basically, it allows the NSA to store enormous amounts of data in a single software platform, rather than spread it across a wide range of disparate databases that must be accessed separately. Accumulo is what’s commonly known as a “NoSQL” database. Unlike a traditional SQL relational database — which is designed to run on a single machine, storing data in neat rows and columns — a NoSQL database is meant for storing much larger amounts of data across a vast array of machines. These databases have become increasingly important in the internet age, as more and more data streams into modern businesses — and government agencies.
With BigTable, Google was at the forefront of the NoSQL movement, and since the company published its paper describing BigTable in 2006, several organizations have built open source platforms mimicking its design. Before the NSA released Accumulo, a search outfit called Powerset — now owned by Microsoft — built a platform called Hbase, while social networking giant Facebook fashioned a similar platform dubbed Cassandra. And this is what bothers the Senate Armed Services Committee.
The Senate Armed Services Committee oversees the U.S. military, including the Department of Defense and the NSA, which is part of the DoD. With Senate bill 3254 — National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 — the committee lays out the U.S. military budget for the coming year, and at one point, the 600-page bill targets Accumulo by name. The bill bars the DoD from using the database unless the department can show that the software is sufficiently different from other databases that mimic BigTable. But at the same time, the bill orders the director of the NSA to work with outside organizations to merge the Accumulo security tools with alternative databases, specifically naming Hbase and Cassandra.
The bill indicates that Accumulo may violate OMB Circular A-130, a government policy that bars agencies from building software if it’s less expensive to use commercial software that’s already available. And according to one congressional staffer who worked on the bill, this is indeed the case. He asked that his name not be used in this story, as he’s not authorized to speak with the press. At this point, the staffer says, the committee isn’t concerned with the man power the NSA required to built the database. But it doesn’t want the government using Accumulo if there are larger, more active communities developing projects such as a Hbase and Cassandra. He says that the committee encouraged the NSA to build its security controls into existing open source projects, but that the agency declined to do so.
The NSA press office could not immediately provide someone to officially discuss the matter. But for Gunnar Hellekson the chief technology strategist in U.S. Public Sector group at Red Hat, the open source software outfit — the committee has gone too far. He argues that since Accumulo has already been built and open sourced, the committee has no business intervening.
“When Accumulo was written, it was definitely doing new work,” he tells Wired. “Some of its differentiating features are being handled by other pieces of software. But other core concepts are unique, including the cell-level security…. That’s are incredibly important feature, and to do it properly is incredibly complicated.”
Not All Open Source Projects Are Created Equal
The bill benefits Hbase and Cassandra — two very popular open source projects. But it certainly undermines the progress of Accumulo, and that’s a particular worry for Oren Falkowitz, one of the developers of the database, who has left the NSA to start Sqrrl, a company that seeks to build a business around Accumulo in much the same way Red Hat built one around the Linux operating system.
Like Hellekson, Falkowitz argues that since Accumulo already open source — and its backed by the Apache Software Foundation, a major open source steward — it doesn’t violate government policy. “The launch of sqrrl validates the success of Apache Accumulo as a project,” he says, pointing out that sqrrl has received funding from two well-known venture capital firms. “Accumulo’s technical strengths are not limited to government use cases, and already, we’ve seen interest and adoption of Accumulo by financial, healthcare, and a broad range of other commercial firms.”
He also argues that Accumulo is still quite different from other BigTable mimics. BigTable and other similar database splits massive amounts of data into tiny pieces and spreads them across potentially tens of thousands of servers. But unlike any other platform, Falkowitz says, Accumulo lets you tag each tiny piece of data so that it can only be accessed by certain outside servers. This is useful not only to the NSA, he says, but to other government organizations and health care outfits legally required to separate data in this way.
“Basically, each [data object] has an extra label that’s attached to it, and you can use that to authenticate and authorize users against each object,” Falkowitz says. “Most systems do that at the columns or the rows level of the database.”
Red Hat’s Hellekson — who has blogged about the issue on multiple occasions — goes further, arguing that the bill could undermine the progress of open source projects well beyond Accumulo. The bill doesn’t just ask that the DoD prove that the Accumulo project is no more costly than the likes of Hbase and Cassandra. It wants proof that Accumulo is a “successful Apache Foundation open source database with adequate industry support and diversification.”
“It doesn’t take much imagination to see that same ‘adequacy criteria’ applied to all open source software projects,” Hellekson writes. “Got a favorite open source project on your DoD program, but no commercial vendor? Inadequate. Only one vendor for the package? Lacks diversity. Proprietary software doesn’t have a burden like this.”
If the bill passed with the current Accumulo language intact, the onus is on the chief information officer of the Department of Defense to determine whether Accumulo can be used within the department. But whatever the verdict, it would not bar the NSA from using the database — just the rest of the DoD.
11/03 Critical new vulnerability in the Linux kernel that could enable an attacker to gain root access to a vulnerable machine and take complete control of it. The vulnerability is in all releases of the kernel from Version 2.4.0 through 2.5.69, but has been fixed in Releases 2.4.23-pre7 and 2.6.0-test6.RedHat Inc. and the Debian Project, both have released advisories warning customers of the issue and providing information on fixes. A slew of products from other vendors, including, MandrakeSoft S.A., SuSE Linux AG and Caldera International Inc., also are vulnerable.
OSDL tells users to ignore SCO threats February 11, 2004
The Open Source Development Labs (OSDL), home of Linux creator Linus Torvalds, has published a paper by Columbia University Professor Eben Moglen advising Linux customers to ignore legal threats from the SCO Group until its copyright litigation against Novell is resolved. Prof. Moglen argues that by suing Novell, SCO has admitted that its own claims to Unix ownership are in doubt, and no judge would hold a user liable for infringement in such a case. Regardless of who wins the suit, users should still be able to use Linux without purchasing a license from SCO or Novell, since both have contributed code under the General Public License. Many customers continue to deploy Linux despite SCO's copyright claims, ignoring legal threats until a final court ruling.
LIBRARIES USE IT
Article about a library (NPL) in Ohio who is using the free software Koha package to replace expensive proprietary software in their library. According to the article, "Thus far, Koha has been a gift to the libraries that have adopted it since its initial release. As each system converts to Koha, it has added additional functionality to the application. Since the application is licensed under the GPL, that means that all users of the application benefit from the incremental efforts of the developers." Or, in other words, each library that contributes to the improvement of the software benefits everyone else that uses it. Imagine the money that could be saved by public institutions that switch to free software and how a cooperative approach makes much more economical sense.
Graham Stewart on one man's crusade to push open source software - February 12, 2004
The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/online/story/0,3605,1145674,00.html
The local public library seems an unlikely place to start a software revolution, but that's where one man has begun his campaign to encourage the use of open-source software.
Bob Kerr, a member of the Edinburgh Linux Users Group, has convinced more than 80% of Scotland's public libraries to stock OpenOffice - the free, open-source alternative to Microsoft Office.
Kerr has put together a CD package containing versions of the software for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. Once accepted by libraries, borrowers can take it home, copy it and use the programs free. In return, they get word processing, spreadsheet, graphics and presentation software that is broadly compatible with Microsoft's Word, Excel and PowerPoint.