Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
Back for a limited time - Get 15% off sitewide on Slashdot Deals with coupon code "BLACKFRIDAY" (some exclusions apply)". ×

Submission + - Has Mark Shuttleworth gone overboard? 3

Linux Torvalds writes: From the article on softpedia which qoutes "Mark Shuttleworth Asks Devs from Different Desktop Environments to Work Together" from Ubuntu Online Summit 2015, which begs us to ask "is he paying attention to any open source development outside of the kingdom of Canonical ?"
Canonical has already started work on making Snappy Package Manager (a replacement for apt based dpkg package manager) and Mir (a replacement for the X window server system) for Ubuntu. But since features promised by Snappy Package Manager are already available in Nix Package Manager, so essentially there is no need to make new one. Similarly Canonical could contribute to make X windows better but instead they are making a new one.
Which makes me wonder has Mark Shuttleworth gone overboard? What do you think?
Hardware Hacking

Submission + - Blind Accessibility, VAXen, and BSD

Mortimer.CA writes: The most recent BSDTalk (#143) has an interview with Deborah Norling (who's blind) where she talks about: command-line accessibility, documentation quality, using (serial port) Braille and speech systems on old PDPs and VAXen/s, GUI screen readers, and SIMH.
Operating Systems

FreeBSD 7.0 Bests Linux In SMP Performance 288

cecom writes "After major improvements in SMP support in FreeBSD 7.0, benchmarks show it performing 15% better than the latest Linux kernels (PDF, see slides 17 to 19) on 8 CPUs under PostgreSQL and MySQL. While a couple of benchmarks are not conclusive evidence, it can be assumed that FreeBSD will once again be a serious performance contender. Some posters on LWN have noted that the level of Linux performance could be related to the Completely Fair Scheduler, which was merged into the 2.6.23 Linux kernel." Update: 03/06 21:32 GMT by KD : An anonymous reader sent in word that Linux kernel developer Nick Piggin reran the benchmark today and came to a different conclusion: In his benchmark Linux was faster than FreeBSD.

Submission + - AMD/ATI's opensource efforts revealed

mattaw writes: Phoronix have revealed in some detail the plan of AMD/ATI to support a community written Radeon opensource driver.

To whit, they are releasing specs and some example code under NDA and an opensource library that connects to the card's BIOS. They already have XOrg developers onboard and have also attracted Jerome Glisse who reverse engineered ATI cards to make the Avivio driver (incidentally probably killing that driver but the new ATI open driver will surely benefit from his excellent work).

While not completely open, this is pretty open for starters, HOWEVER I for one am not certain of things like support for hardware video decoding or extra on board hardware (TV-Out etc.).

Checkout the final comments: "The aim of this open-source driver is not to overtake the fglrx driver but rather is designed for those who just want a working desktop with 3D capabilities and basic video playback. This new driver is ideal for FOSS enthusiasts and those wishing to run the latest development kernels and versions of X.Org."

Still there is no argument that this is a brilliant result.

Feed OpenBSD Foundation opens its doors (

Yesterday the OpenBSD Foundation debuted as a Canadian nonprofit organization intended to serve as "a single point of contact for persons and organizations requiring a legal entity to deal with when they wish to support OpenBSD in any way."
Linux Business

Submission + - BMC throws down open source licensing gauntlet (

An anonymous reader writes: BMC threw down an open source licensing gauntlet at OSCON by making several open source integration projects available under the BSD License. Claiming that the BSD conferred the most freedom on developers, and doesn't mandate what they can or must do with code they modify BMC's open source leader whurley continues to shock the systems management marketplace into submission publicly challenging HP, IBM, and CA to follow suit and provide their users and developers with true freedom. Linux Today , eWeek , The Register , and industry analyst James Governor all are shocked and impressed by this move, but the real question is...Can HP, CA, and IBM possibly keep up with BMC's new open source leadership and their unexpected openness.

Thus spake the master programmer: "Time for you to leave." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"