Older Articles

In Defense of Negativity

Posted 3 Sep 2011 at 17:03 UTC (updated 4 Sep 2011 at 00:00 UTC) by mako

I have often heard criticism of "negative campaigning" in the free software movement. "Negative" campaigns speak out against proprietary software as opposed to "positive" campaigns which instead speak of the benefits of software freedom. This essays unpacks some of the arguments against negativity and makes the argument that negative campaigns, in some forms, can play an critical and important role in free software advocacy.

Read more... (3 replies)

Losing lifeblood: Advogato's marginal appeal

Posted 31 Aug 2011 at 10:16 UTC by chalst

Two days ago, gesslein announced his retirement, provisionally at least, from Advogato, saying No one can comment on my posts, and it doesn't seem to be reaching anyone.

Read more... (12 replies)

NHS Scotland Open Desktop Initiative

Posted 4 Aug 2011 at 17:49 UTC by lkcl

This article is written in response to the Question and Answer phase
of the NHS Scotland Open Desktop Initiative.
From the initiative's abstract:


NHSScotland is currently in the process of developing a set of standards to
support the development and building of the NHS Scotland Open Desktop.

The response takes into account the clarification of the initiative,
through the QA session, yet the response is also equally applicable advice
to any organisation wishing to have applications written that run across
a very diverse range of devices and platforms without having to develop
and maintain multiple versions of the exact same software.
Read more... (1 reply)

Evolution of Programming Languages

Posted 13 Jul 2011 at 16:51 UTC by badvogato

read about the sad news that Jeff Fox, Forth advocate, passed away on Chuck Moore's blog.

Read more... (3 replies)

Implementing spam protection in Wiki engines

Posted 2 May 2011 at 08:26 UTC (updated 2 May 2011 at 11:35 UTC) by audriusa

Spam is really a problem in many Wiki communities, often forcing at least temporary to restrict editing rights. Most of the recent attempts to find a solution focus around captchas and spam lists. Captchas may be efficient to some extent; the problem is that to make them unreadable for bots, they must be twisted enough to become also difficult for humans to read. Lists seem less and less efficient, often accumulating thousands of entries and still leaving enough gaps for spammers. Spammers frequently use the Wiki search box to check if there is already some spam on the site - this shows that Wiki may be purely maintained and they can add more. Hence it may make sense to implement the delayed indexing but it also delays indexing of legitimate content. Blocking IP addresses is also no longer useful due DHCP.

One of the solutions may be to use combined protection rather than relying on some single "killer" approach. The rationale is to make spammer to invest more and more work into building the spam bot. Requiring a complex bot does not make the attack impossible but may statistically eliminate significant percent of spammers that are not willing to invest enough resources.

Read more... (1 reply)

Triolet

Posted 7 Apr 2011 at 19:28 UTC (updated 8 Apr 2011 at 21:48 UTC) by badvogato

I came up with this triolet to add my two cents to a Chinese physicist and poet's view on Oxford debate 'Poetry is beautiful but Science is what matters' :

Verse and song gave birth to thee
fearful mechanical and scientific device
Love's but a dance
of verse and song sublime to thee
A whisper, a glance, this little death --
"Shall we twirl down in Elysian Fields ?"
Verse and song gave birth to thee
fearful mechanical and scientific device

Read more... (4 replies)

Diversity statement for Ubuntu

Posted 9 Feb 2011 at 07:36 UTC by chalst

mdz is drafting, with the help of Valerie Aurora, hypatia, and mako, a diversity statement for Ubuntu, and is seeking comments on the current draft.
Read more... (3 replies)

Bombono DVD reached 1.0

Posted 5 Jan 2011 at 12:21 UTC by murajov

Bombono DVD is a DVD authoring program for Linux. It is made easy to use and has nice and clean GUI.
Read more... (0 replies)

GNU recutils 1.1 released

Posted 23 Dec 2010 at 23:58 UTC by jemarch

I am happy to announce a new release of the GNU recutils, version 1.1.

Read more... (0 replies)

Unicode 6.0 is released

Posted 12 Oct 2010 at 20:25 UTC by roozbeh

Unicode 6.0 was released today. Here is the link to the announcement: http://www.unicode.org/press/pr-6.0.html

The following changes should be interesting to the Persian and Iranianist computing community (based on an original post to the Persian Computing list):

Read more... (0 replies)

Piracy and Free Software

Posted 11 Oct 2010 at 16:51 UTC by mako

Over the last few years, many advocates of access to information have gathered and organized under the banner of piracy. Should FLOSS and free culture advocates embrace advocates of piracy as comrades in arms or condemn them? Must we choose between being either with the pirates or against them? I believe that, unintuitively, if we take a strong principled position in favor of information freedom and distinguish between principles and tactics, a more nuanced "middle ground" response to piracy is possible. On free culture and free software's terms, we can suggest that piracy is not ethically wrong, but that it is an shortsighted and unwise way to try to promote sharing that we should not support.

Read more... (3 replies)

MongoDB 1.5.7 - 1.6RC2 is out and ready for testing

Posted 31 Jul 2010 at 14:37 UTC by anderson

In a message posted by Eliot at Mongo DB list

Read more... (1 reply)

Horseshit on a stick "Can Open Source be secure" BCS riposte

Posted 27 Jul 2010 at 23:50 UTC by lkcl

An article published by the BCS was brought to my attention, and it was full of such glaring omissions and implicit attacks on free software that it had to be dealt with. initially written as a comment, it quickly extended way beyond the length of the original article...

Read more... (2 replies)

Coding challenge - reverse a string

Posted 16 Jun 2010 at 15:58 UTC (updated 16 Jun 2010 at 21:55 UTC) by fzort

It's simple. That's the point.

Read more... (17 replies)

Python GUI Proposal

Posted 12 Jun 2010 at 13:37 UTC by lkcl

in the longest thread i've ever contributed to rather than sparked off as a flame-war, i describe why i think that leveraging web browser technology is a much better way to create a widget set.

Read more... (0 replies)

The behavioral economics of free software

Posted 25 May 2010 at 19:36 UTC (updated 26 May 2010 at 13:26 UTC) by mdz

People who use and promote free software cite various reasons for their choice, but do those reasons tell the whole story? If, as a community, we want free software to continue to grow in popularity, especially in the mainstream, we should understand better the true reasons for choosing it—especially our own.

This is a repost of an article originally posted at http://mdzlog.alcor.net/2010/05/25/the-behavioral-economics-of-free- software/

Read more... (1 reply)

Auditory recognition module for artificial intelligence

Posted 14 May 2010 at 20:03 UTC by mentifex

The AudRecog mind-module for auditory recognition in artificial intelligence (AI) tests user input one character or phoneme at a time to recognize words and morphemes that will activate a concept in the AI Mind or extract meaning from an idea.

Read more... (4 replies)

Hacking computers, hacking life

Posted 14 Apr 2010 at 17:09 UTC (updated 14 Apr 2010 at 17:46 UTC) by proclus

Some of you may not know that in addition to my admin responsibility at GNU-Darwin, I am a biochemist and protein crystallographer, as well as the X-ray lab manager and systems admin for the Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry Department at Johns Hopkins University. Here are some Hopkins links.

http://biophysics.med.jhmi.edu/xtal/ http://biophysics.med.jhmi.edu/love/

The main reasons that I went into life sciences were to increase intelligence and longevity, which is like hacking computers, but it is hacking the body instead.

Read more... (7 replies)

YMDXDWEG6BY7

Posted 12 Apr 2010 at 16:40 UTC by proclus

YMDXDWEG6BY7

Read more... (4 replies)

proclus/GNU-Darwin Lives!

Posted 29 Mar 2010 at 17:33 UTC by proclus

I've been keeping this journal the way it was in 2000 for historical archival reasons. If you are interested in current information, here are some up to date links.

Read more... (1 reply)

1037 older articles...

Suggest a story

New Advogato Features

New HTML Parser: The long-awaited libxml2 based HTML parser code is live. It needs further work but already handles most markup better than the original parser.

Keep up with the latest Advogato features by reading the Advogato status blog.

If you're a C programmer with some spare time, take a look at the mod_virgule project page and help us with one of the tasks on the ToDo list!