Hot on the heels of the Gtk+ 3.8 release comes GNOME 3.8. There are a few general UI improvements, but the highlight for many is the new Classic mode that replaces fallback. Instead of using code based on the old GNOME panel, Classic emulates the feel of GNOME 2 through Shell extensions (just like Linux Mint's Cinnamon interface). From the release notes: "Classic mode is a new feature for those people who prefer a more traditional desktop experience. Built entirely from GNOME 3 technologies, it adds a number of features such as an application menu, a places menu and a window switcher along the bottom of the screen. Each of these features can be used individually or in combination with other GNOME extensions."
sfcrazy writes "Google has announced the Open Patent Non-Assertion (OPN) Pledge. In the pledge Google says that they will not sue any user, distributor, or developer of Open Source software on specified patents, unless first attacked. Under this pledge, Google is starting off with 10 patents relating to MapReduce, a computing model for processing large data sets first developed at Google. Google says that over time they intend to expand the set of Google's patents covered by the pledge to other technologies." This is in addition to the Open Invention Network, and their general work toward reforming the patent system. The patents covered in the OPN will be free to use in Free/Open Source software for the life of the patent, even if Google should transfer ownership to another party. Read the text of the pledge. It appears that interaction with non-copyleft licenses (MIT/BSD/Apache) is a bit weird: if you create a non-free fork it appears you are no longer covered under the pledge.
An anonymous reader writes "Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, was arrested on Tuesday in relation to a Swedish sex-crime case, the London Metropolitan Police said. Interpol, the international police agency, had issued a 'red notice' last week for Assange, who had been hiding out in an undisclosed location till recently. The notice is not equivalent of an arrest warrant, but he was charged with sex crimes and was put on the 'wanted' list."
But isn't this a good thing? Whether they succeed and advance the state of Linux on the desktop or they fail and other distributions, focusing on other things, retake their current lead because of those 'other things', the Linux desktop will benefit.
Logged in as root again?
Frequent Slashdot contributor Bennett Haselton writes " Amid the latest 'sexting' controversy, here is a proposal for a scientifically objective method to determine whether a picture constitutes child pornography. This is a harder problem than it seems, but not for the reasons you'd think. And it raises questions about how the same scientific principles could be applied to other matters of law." Hit the link below to read the sextiest story on Slashdot today.
Keith found a New Scientist story about fractals and quantum theory. The article says "Take the mathematics of fractals into account, says Palmer, and the long-standing puzzles of quantum theory may be much easier to understand. They might even dissolve away."
An anonymous reader writes "The Walt Disney Co and Hulu.com have restarted talks over offering shows from Disney's ABC television network on the online video distributor owned by NBC Universal and News Corp, paidContent.org reported on Friday, citing unnamed sources." The real question to me is when will they stop screwing around with Boxee users?
Thomas M Hughes writes "At Blizzard's World Wide Invitational, it was just announced moments ago that the game studio will be developing and hopefully releasing Starcraft II. I imagine much more news will come in the next few days, as the flood gates are now open."
AbsoluteXyro writes "PETA is going to be pissed. London Entertainment Guide (Slightly NSFW) breaks the news that electronics giant Sony, in another stroke of marketing brilliance, decided to decapitate a goat and invite guests to "reach inside the goat's still-warm carcass to eat offal from its stomach" as a PR stunt to promote God of War II at a recent party in Athens. Images from the party, including at least one showing the freshly decapitated goat's head hanging by it's corpse by a thread of tissue, have been published in a two page spread in the latest edition of Playstation Magazine. Interestingly, Sony UK has refused to say how the goat was killed, but judging by the pictures, we can guess."