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Jon ‘maddog’ Hall

Linux Journal

  • IP Voice 2008 - Lisbon, Portugal - March 5th to 6th, 2008 -

    IP Voice 2008 ( will be held in Lisbon, Portugal on March 5th to 6th, 2008, and with the main audience of this conference being targeted to enterprise customers and communication carriers.

    There have been a number of Open Software Phone projects that have happened in the past year and which continue to move forward: more>>

  • Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit - Austin, Texas - April 8th to 10th, 2008 -

    Unlike a lot of the events that I discuss in my Blog, the Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit is a "by invitation only" event with a twist. Normally for "invitation only events", the potential attendee sits by the phone with their prom clothes on, waiting for the call that may or may not come. more>>

  • Campus Party, February 11-17, 2008, Sao Paulo, Brazil -

    After speaking at the Florida Linux Show on February 11th, I return ever-so-briefly to the New England area to re-pack my bags and head for Sao Paulo, Brazil to attend Campus Party (February 11th to 17th, 2008). more>>

  • LPI Community Corner

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    Richard Stallman’s Blog

  • Orders against reporting on sexual abuse -

    UK newspapers were ordered not to report on sexual abuse by politicians, and the records of these orders appear to have been destroyed, or else the orders were fake.

    Either way, it is very fishy.

  • Altruism -

    Experimental subjects paid more to protect strangers from electric shocks than to protect themselves from shocks.

    The article ends with a very good refutation of one of the typical fallacious cynical attacks against altruism.

  • Australian public broadcasting attacked -

    The Australian government is attacking public broadcasting for not being right-wing.

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    Sérgio Amadeu


  • Descobertos e (re)misturados - Este artigo foi escrito por Fabianne Balvedi originalmente para a edição n.45 da Revista ABCDesign, codinome “Origens” ( ) Era junho de 2004, e eu estava em uma das apresentações mais badaladas do FISL V – Quinto Fórum Internacional Software Livre. Apesar de trabalhar com programas de código aberto desde 2001, fazia muito pouco [...]
  • CANDIDATO dos TUCANOS DEFENDEU TRABALHO INFANTIL. JUSTIÇA COMPROVA - Jonas Donizete, desesperado, despreparado, orientado pelos mesmos marketeiros de Alckmin e Serra, tentou nos programas de TV dizer que nunca tinha apresentado nenhum projeto favorável ao trabalho infantil. Como não conseguiu impedir o acesso ao projeto de lei 9236/1997, de sua autoria, no site Câmara de Vereadores, solicitou à Jutiça Eleitoral o bloqueio das denuncias, [...]
  • JONAS DONIZETE, DO PSB, DEFENDE TRABALHO INFANTIL - Jonas Donizete, candidato de Alckmin e dos tucanos a Prefeitura de Campinas, apoiado por Luiza Erundina, apresentou o vergonhoso projeto que defende trabalho de crianças a partir de 7 anos de idade. O pior é que ele mente na TV e diz que nunca apresentou o projeto. Ele aposta na ignorância. Então, desafio ele e [...]
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    GNU`s News

  • FSF Blogs: The sharks move in; lobbyists pushing forward on TPP agreements -

    On October 16th, WikiLeaks released an updated draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Strategic Partnership Agreement chapter on copyright, patent and other proprietary interests. A previous draft had been released last year. If you aren't familiar with TPP, it is a multinational trade-agreement that is being developed through a series of secret negotiations that when enacted will have a vast effect on civil liberties, including the ability of users all around the world to enjoy software freedom.

    We have been following and opposing these negotiations both in person and online for many years now. We wrote earlier this year about the dangers posed by these secret negotiations. This latest leak reveals that the countries involved in the TPP negotiations are coming closer to acceptance of a whole host of problematic agreements:

    • Penalizing the circumvention of digital restriction management, even for non-infringing uses. Previous leaked versions of the negotiations were poised to repeat the miserable failure of the United State's DMCA anti-circumvention exemption regime. While the current draft has moved away from implementing this broken system elsewhere, it still leaves in place a system where users can face penalties for circumventing digital restrictions management. Worse still, these penalties can apply even when the circumvention is done for non-infringing uses.
    • Perpetuating indefinite terms of copyright. The current draft shows the parties solidifying agreement around extending the term of copyright restriction, potentially up to life of the author plus 100 years. The U.S. has extended the term of copyright several times over the past decades, and accepting the maximum proposed change would once again break the basic bargain of the copyright system. This term would push perpetual copyright into other countries as well.
    • Failing to block the patenting of software. The current draft once again leaves open the possibility of software coming under the heading of patentable subject matter. The disaster of software patents in countries where they already exist is one of the greatest threats to user freedom, and a regime that does not block the patenting of software will only expand this problem elsewhere. Most troubling is the proposal by Mexico specifically stating that signing parties should be able to exclude software from patentable subject matter. This would be great news, if not for the fact that they are the only country signed onto the proposal.

    These are just a few of the problems with the subject matter of the negotiations, not to mention the over-arching problem of the process being hidden from the public. We have asked for your help in the past in opposing TPP, but the fight is still not over. Here's what you can do to help:

  • grep @ Savannah: grep-2.21 released [stable] -
  • parallel @ Savannah: GNU Parallel 20141122 ('Rosetta') released -

    GNU Parallel 20141122 ('Rosetta') has been released. It is available for download at:

    Haiku of the month:

    Hadoop bit too much?
    Want a simpler syntax now?
    Use GNU Parallel.
    -- Ole Tange

    A central piece of command generation was rewritten making this release beta quality. As always it passes the testsuite, so most functionality clearly works.

    New in this release:

    • Remote systems can be divided into hostgroups (e.g. web and db) by prepending '@groupname/' to the sshlogin. Multiple groups can be given by separating groups with '+'. E.g. @web/www1 @web+db/www2 @db/mariadb
    • Remote execution can be restricted to servers that are part of one or more groups by '@groupname' as an sshlogin. Multiple groups can be given by separating groups with '+'. E.g. -S @web or -S @db+web
    • With --hostgroup you can restrict arguments to certain hostgroups by appending '@groupname' to the argument. Multiple groups can be given by separating groups with '+'. E.g. my_web_arg@web db-or-web-arg@db+web db-only-arg@db Thanks to Michel Courtine for developing a prototype for this.
    • Bug fixes and man page updates.

    GNU Parallel - For people who live life in the parallel lane.

    About GNU Parallel

    GNU Parallel is a shell tool for executing jobs in parallel using one or more computers. A job is can be a single command or a small script that has to be run for each of the lines in the input. The typical input is a list of files, a list of hosts, a list of users, a list of URLs, or a list of tables. A job can also be a command that reads from a pipe. GNU Parallel can then split the input and pipe it into commands in parallel.

    If you use xargs and tee today you will find GNU Parallel very easy to use as GNU Parallel is written to have the same options as xargs. If you write loops in shell, you will find GNU Parallel may be able to replace most of the loops and make them run faster by running several jobs in parallel. GNU Parallel can even replace nested loops.

    GNU Parallel makes sure output from the commands is the same output as you would get had you run the commands sequentially. This makes it possible to use output from GNU Parallel as input for other programs.

    You can find more about GNU Parallel at:

    You can install GNU Parallel in just 10 seconds with: (wget -O - || curl | bash

    Watch the intro video on

    Walk through the tutorial (man parallel_tutorial). Your commandline will love you for it.

    When using programs that use GNU Parallel to process data for publication please cite:

    O. Tange (2011): GNU Parallel - The Command-Line Power Tool, ;login: The USENIX Magazine, February 2011:42-47.

    If you like GNU Parallel:

    • Give a demo at your local user group/team/colleagues
    • Post the intro videos on Reddit/Diaspora*/forums/blogs/ lists
    • Get the merchandise
    • Request or write a review for your favourite blog or magazine
    • Request or build a package for your favourite distribution (if it is not already there)
    • Invite me for your next conference

    If you use GNU Parallel for research:

    • Please cite GNU Parallel in you publications (use --bibtex)

    If GNU Parallel saves you money:

    About GNU SQL

    GNU sql aims to give a simple, unified interface for accessing databases through all the different databases' command line clients. So far the focus has been on giving a common way to specify login information (protocol, username, password, hostname, and port number), size (database and table size), and running queries.

    The database is addressed using a DBURL. If commands are left out you will get that database's interactive shell.

    When using GNU SQL for a publication please cite:

    O. Tange (2011): GNU SQL - A Command Line Tool for Accessing Different Databases Using DBURLs, ;login: The USENIX Magazine, April 2011:29-32.

    About GNU Niceload

    GNU niceload slows down a program when the computer load average (or other system activity) is above a certain limit. When the limit is reached the program will be suspended for some time. If the limit is a soft limit the program will be allowed to run for short amounts of time before being suspended again. If the limit is a hard limit the program will only be allowed to run when the system is below the limit.

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    Debian Project News

  • The Debian Community combats Global Warming with a Freeze - The Release Team is proud to announce that Debian 8.0 "Jessie" is frozen. Further updates to this release will be restricted to bug fixes only.
  • The newsletter for the Debian community - With the freeze occurring as planned on November 5, Lucas Nussbaum blogged: "This is quite an achievement from the project as a whole, and the Release Team specifically. First, we froze on the date announced more than a year ago, and the freeze seems to have been well respected by all maintainers. Second, with 310 RC bugs at the time of the freeze, we are probably breaking a record for all recent Debian releases. Could we have the shorter Debian freeze ever? Given that FOSDEM is 12 weeks away, could we even release before FOSDEM, and have a big party there to celebrate?"
  • Tokyo area Debian study group - The Tokyo area Debian study group held its 119th meeting starting with a Debian common sense quiz, moving on to a discussion of the LibreOffice package in Debian and desires to see more upstream and downstream support. They also had a hands-on event for debian-installer beta2 for Debian 8 "Jessie".